Skip to main content

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

Results: StarCraft II

StarCraft II is one of those titles that consistently shows Intel's CPUs in the lead. We've already seen a number of significant changes from our previous look at sub-$200 processors, though. Might a string of patches, including a post-processing anti-aliasing option, alter the outcome today?

Intel continues to dominate in StarCraft. But its Pentium G860 no longer embarrasses the competition from AMD like it did last year. In fact, it's now in the lower third of our line-up.

Charting out frame rate over time shows how this test speeds up as the benchmark progresses. This is because our test starts with a large number of computer-controlled units. The demand on the system lessens as they are destroyed.

On average, we see high consecutive frame time differences. Given the demanding start to our test, though, and the frame rate increases that occur as the benchmark progresses, there's a good reason we'd see this happen. 

The Llano-based APUs and Athlon II X3 get hit the hardest.