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AMD FX Vs. Intel Core i3: Exploring Game Performance With Cheap GPUs

Benchmark Results: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Performance Target: 30 FPS Minimum

Between our first sub-$200 gaming CPU article and now, Bethesda released a Skyrim patch that greatly improves performance. This game was particularly processor-dependent last time. That's not so much the case now.

There’s almost no differentiation between CPUs. Average frame rates are dismal, though, so let’s see how these competing platforms fare when the settings are lowered to facilitate better performance.

Performance Target: 40 FPS Minimum, 60 FPS Average

Little changes until we install AMD's Radeon HD 6950. Suddenly, Intel's Core i3-2100 takes off with a notable lead. The FX-4100 delivers playable frame rates, but the Sandy Bridge-based CPU maintains a 10 FPS spread.