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Gaming Shoot-Out: 18 CPUs And APUs Under $200, Benchmarked

Results: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

When it first came out, Skyrim was brutally hard on any processor other than a Core i5 or i7. But we've seen a number of patches that help fix the performance issues that previously plagued this title.

Only the Athlon II X3 and A4 APUs fall below the 50 FPS average, and only the A4s drop under 40. That's a lot different from what we saw in Picking A Sub-$200 Gaming CPU: FX, An APU, Or A Pentium? a year ago.

Intel's dual-core Pentium fares much better in Skyrim than it did in Metro 2033 or Far Cry 3.

An analysis of frame rates over time turn up no surprises. The only processor that falls below a 30-FPS minimum is the A4-5300.

The consecutive frame latencies are both short and consistent. Even the slowest dual-core APUs demonstrate a six-millisecond lag at the 95th percentile.