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Intel Pentium G3258 CPU Review: Haswell, Unlocked, For $75

Results: Adobe CC

You wouldn’t expect a straight-up dual-core Pentium to hang with a Hyper-Threaded Core i3 and overclocked dual-module Athlon X4, but there it is.

Again, though, just look at the Core i5 in comparison. And that’s a 3.5 GHz CPU with 800 or 900 MHz of additional headroom available. A quad-core Haswell-based chip (or better) is the way to go when you’re doing heavy lifting.

The same conclusions apply to After Effects. Yes, overclocking does wonders for the Pentium G3258. But Intel’s Core i5 is so much faster. You can shave off 56% of the Pentium’s overclocked result by going with a stock Core i7-4790K if rendering performance really matters to you.

This chart reflects a pair of benchmarks, which need to be looked at separately.

If you run a lot of threaded filters, the red bars matter most. They show Intel’s Pentium G3258 and AMD’s Athlon X4 750K pretty much tied in their stock form. Overclocking helps them both quite a bit, and they both leap past Intel’s $140 Core i3-4330. The extra clock rate favors Intel’s Pentium a little more, though. No matter—if you’re an artist, strongly consider spending more on a quad-core CPU. The Core i5’s finish illustrates why.

Our OpenCL-accelerated numbers are far more problematic for AMD. The Intel CPUs get subtle speed-ups as we shift from stock Pentium to Core i3 to overclocked Pentium, and finally the Core i5. But the overclocked Athlon is 87% slower than the overclock Pentium. Based on what we’ve seen thus far, and knowing this test offloads work to the GeForce card, we have to imagine there’s an issue keeping Nvidia’s GK110 GPU fed on AMD’s platform. The A85X platform only supports PCI Express 2.0, but it’s hard to imagine transfer rates across the PCIe bus making this much difference.

Chris Angelini
Chris Angelini is an Editor Emeritus at Tom's Hardware US. He edits hardware reviews and covers high-profile CPU and GPU launches.