Reader requests affect much of the work we do, and we constantly receive email asking for this one: compare Intel's older Wolfdale- and Yorkfield-based designs against today's budget-friendly Ivy Bridge-based processors. Well, you asked, and we deliver.
We use a brutal sequence depicting a worst-case scenario for how these processors handle Crysis 3. The game is so CPU-dependent that we'll start by dropping down to the lowest quality before moving on to more interesting settings.
While you will certainly see higher performance in other areas of this game, you can’t bypass this sequence while playing through the single-player campaign. At the least-demanding settings, not one of our dual-core processors could come close to matching the stock Core 2 Quad Q9550 for playability. We’re not going to condemn dual-core CPUs as unfit based on one game alone, but if this doesn’t improve with a patch of some sort, it's bad news.
Again we need to point out differences between Fraps' reported minimum frame rate and the logged data. In fact, we used this exact data as an example to seek feedback from AMD and Nvidia. While every one of these processors varied from one to three frames per second, the Core i3-3225 experiences a huge 11 FPS difference. The slowest second logged 30 frames, yet the minimum was reported to be 19.
Subjectively, both the Core i5 and Core i3 deliver a fairly smooth experience at these settings. The Q9550 was very playable once we overclocked it, but noticeably slower at stock speeds. Repeating this run two to three times on each dual-core CPU was an almost painful experience.
While I won’t say that the Core i3 or 3.4 GHz Core 2 Quad were completely unplayable, the Core i5-3570K is the only processor I can whole-heartedly recommend for Crysis 3. Very High details demand expensive graphics hardware, and big graphics warrant the balanced platform only a fast quad-core CPU (or higher) can deliver.
- Old Vs. New: Six Intel Processors, Benchmarked
- Test System Configuration And Benchmarks
- Results: Synthetics
- Results: Audio And Video
- Results: Adobe Creative Suite
- Results: Productivity
- Results: Compression
- Game Testing Methodology
- Results: Borderlands 2
- Results: Crysis 3
- Results: F1 2012
- Results: Far Cry 3
- Results: Hitman: Absolution
- Results: StarCraft II: Heart Of The Swarm
- Results: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
- Results: Tomb Raider
- Overclocking: More Voltage, Higher Clocks
- Overclocking: 3D Game Performance
- Power Consumption
- Performance Summary
- How Do Five-Year-Old CPUs Hold Up Against Ivy Bridge?