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Picking A Platform: Comparing Intel And AMD

Build It: Picking Parts For Your Kid's Entry-Level Gaming PC

Selecting the Right CPU and Motherboard

Our first decision sets the stage for the rest of our build. Should you buy an AMD APU or an Intel CPU with HD Graphics? Intel’s Pentium G620 and Celeron G530 CPUs are a little cheaper than AMD’s A8-3850 and A6-3650. But most of that savings is negated by Intel’s generally more expensive motherboards. In the end, we're left to consider slightly more affordable Intel-based solutions.

We aren't including the AMD A8-3870K CPU in that comparison either, since it's quite a bit pricier and only makes sense for overclocking. The -3850 is a more budget-friendly choice.

Pentium G620
Celeron G530
Core Frequency2.7 GHz 2.4 GHz 2.9 GHz
2.6 GHz
Cache512 KB L2 + 3 MB L3 512 KB L2 + 2 MB L34 MB L2
4 MB L2
Turbo FrequencyNo Turbo No Turbo No Turbo
No Turbo
TDP Rating 65 W 65 W 100 W
100 W
Lithography32 nm 32 nm 32 nm
32 nm
Integrated Memory ControllerDDR3-1066 DDR3-1066 DDR3-1866 DDR3-1866
Integrated GraphicsIntel HD Graphics
850 MHz Base
1.1 GHz Max Freq.
Intel HD Graphics
850 MHz Base
1.0 GHz Max Freq.
Radeon HD 6550DRadeon HD 6530D
H67 Chipset
H67 Chipset
A55 Chipset
A55 Chipset

One Intel CPU, well-cooledOne Intel CPU, well-cooled

AMD's A8-3850 can quickly push smaller heat sinks to their limitsAMD's A8-3850 can quickly push smaller heat sinks to their limits

Bottom Line

Right out of the gate, we see that Intel's solutions have a slight advantage over AMD's from a pricing standpoint. Next, we'll take a look at how to keep these respective platforms cooled adequately, quietly, and inexpensively.

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