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Who's Got Game? Twelve Sub-$200 CPUs Compared

Benchmark Results: F1 2010

So far, all of our benchmarks have exposed limitations of our GeForce GTX 480 before falling over the value-oriented processors we're trying to road-test. F1 2010 is a different story entirely, though.

Apparently, this game is much more dependent on a capable CPU, despite its DirectX 11 engine, which is closely related to DiRT 2. The triple-core Athlon II X3 struggles, but the quad-core Athlon II X4 delivers much more compelling performance, running alongside the pricier Phenom II X4 models. The Clarkdale-based Core i3s stand toe-to-toe with the Phenoms, too.

This situation makes the Phenom II X6 1075T results stand out, as the processor delivers sub-par performance here. It doesn't make sense that the CPU with the most cores in the roundup musters the second-worst achievement in the roundup. When we took a closer look at this situation we found that disabling two of the 1075T's CPU cores resulted in better performance on par with the Phenom II X4. We've duplicated this odd result on two of our test systems, so it appears that F1 2010 has an issue with AMD's hexacore models.

In any case, the Sandy Bridge-based processors undeniably stand out in this benchmark, with the dual-core i3s easily besting AMD’s premium quad-core models.

  • Simulated CPU Chart: 3330 GHz

    o_O I'd like me one of those
    Reply
  • alidan
    id just love to point out, i personally will never again make a mistake of getting a hyperthreaded cpu over real cores. i made that mistake once, and never again.

    a pc will never be gaming only, unless you have more than one, in that case, for for the cheaper dual core hyperthreaded, but if you do anything else, get a real quadcore and don't even take into consideration the logical cores.
    Reply
  • lunyone
    I'm still thinking the AMD Athlon II x3's and x4's are the best buys around. If you take comparable configurations from AMD and Intel, AMD wins easily. Here is what I'm talking about below:

    AMD build w/AMD Athlon II x3 455 w/Asus 870 based mobo:
    $89 for Athlon II x3 455
    $90 for AMD mobo (Asus) w/6xSATA 3, 6 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0, 4 x DDR3 slots.
    ASUS M4A87TD/USB3 AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 AMD Motherboard
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131651

    Intel build w/i3 550 w/P55 based mobo (Asus also):
    $130 i3 550
    $150-$10 MIRc Comparable mobo (Asus also) 6xSATA 3, 6 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0, 4 DDR3 slots.
    ASUS P7P55D-E LX LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131634

    **These are all Newegg prices**
    AMD build (using the same Case/PSU/RAM/DVD parts in both systems)
    $179 + shared parts.

    Intel build (same parts shared w/AMD build)
    $280 + shared parts.

    This equals out to ~$100 price difference between the 2 builds, which to me is quite a bit!

    So in general when trying to factor in "Value" for the gaming buck I still see the AMD based system being the better buy. Assuming your using mobo's with about the same features. If you notice the Intel based mobo's will cost you more for similar AMD based mobo's. This is where a lot of the value comes from AMD. Don't get me wrong here, the Intel based system is very good system too, you just have to pay more for them.
    Reply
  • amirp
    @lunyone

    Yes the amd build is pretty cheap, but swap you're i3 550 with the i3 2100 and the p55 mobo with the p67 mobo, and you have a build that is now worth the $100 over the amd build
    Reply
  • amirp
    sorry I meant to add, the drawback is waiting for the SB mobo's to arrive

    also I think this conclusion summarizes well AMD's predicament in a months time:
    "the Core i3-2100 performs as well as (or slightly better than) AMD's Phenom II X4 970 flagship."

    Reply
  • dco
    Up until now, AMD's Pentium II X4

    I almost missed this typo an AMD pentium hmmm something seems wrong.
    Reply
  • So what everyone is saying is - AMD's old technology is getting beat by Intel's newest? This is to be expected.

    If the point is that Intel has the best budget system at the current prices - then yes, the point is made. But it looks more like you're trying to prove Intel is better just before AMD launches a new generation of CPU's. While I can't speak for anyone else, I'm at least going to give their next generation a chance.
    Reply
  • kashifme21
    Why even bother upgrading when most games are console ports, and dont need more then 3-4 yr old hardware to run maxed out?

    Certainly no one needs quad cores for web browsing and word lol.
    Reply
  • hardcore_gamer
    Don't forget the fact that these sandy-bridge CPUS can not be overclocked
    Reply
  • iam2thecrowe
    id like to see a core 2 duo comparison to the new cpu's. Everyone says they are old and slow, but in reality they are similar to an i3 without hyperthreading.
    Reply