Best Budget Gaming CPU

Looking for the next best CPU for your gaming rig, perhaps you’re a pro gamer who is in need of an upgrade or casual who’s just starting out. In 2021 with how far requirements have progressed, it can be stressful to pick the right CPU for your PC. However, in this article, we’ll be helping you to pick the best budget gaming CPU that suits your needs. Remember that when shopping for the best budget gaming CPU, you’ll want to balance performance and features with your pc budget. But not to worry as all the options mentioned in the list will help you choose the best CPU for you.

The list included both AMD and Intel processors. Also, I need to mention that the price may vary depending on when you read this so check the on your own. Also, the list is not from best to worst or worst to best. I just put it in a random place. So check out the full list.

Best budget gaming CPU at a glance:

  1. Ryzen 5 3400G
  2. Ryzen 3 3300X
  3. Ryzen 5 3600
  4. Ryzen 9 5900X
  5. Intel Core i7-10700K
  6. Ryzen 5 5600X
  7. Intel Core i5-10600K
  8. Intel Core I5-8400
  9. Intel Core I9-9900K

Read more: CPU and GPU Bottleneck detailed and easy explanation

AMD Ryzen 5 3400G

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 4 / 8
  • GPU Cores: 11
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.7GHz/4.2GHz
  • Architecture: Zen+
Ryzen 5 3400G best budget gaming CPU

The Ryzen 5 3400G is a great processor for those who are on a very tight budget but still want to enjoy gaming. The 3400G is the upgrade version of 2400G. It comes with the RX Vega 11 integrated graphics, allowing you to enable the playable framerate for various recent game titles with low-medium graphics settings. This CPU eliminates the need for a graphics card, which allows using the money on different parts like RAM or SSD.

The Ryzen 5 3400G is based on a 12nm process with an optimized Zen+ architecture. Resulting in a great improvement in overall performance, also a higher CPU and GPU clock speed compared to the previous generation. The processor comes with a beefier bundled cooler, which not only just keeps the CPU cooler, also gives you a little bit of room to overclock.

The Ryzen 5 3400G consider as one of the best budget gaming CPUs/APU. So, if you are on a very tight budget this CPU is all you need.

AMD Ryzen 3 3300X

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 4 / 8
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.8GHz/4.3GHz
  • Architecture: Zen 2
Best Budget Gaming CPU

Looking for a processor, which unlocks a new level of performance while still on a tight budget? The AMD Ryzen 3 3300X is for you. With 4 cores and 8 Threads, that can push the graphics card to its full potential. Ryzen 3 3300X based on Zen 2 architecture with 7nm process technology, push the processor at its peak performance, also enable the support of PCIe 4.0.

Talking about clock speed, the 3300X’s base is 3.8 GHz and can boost all 4 cores up to 4.3 GHz. Provide the best possible performance while gaming. The included Wraith Spire cooler is enough to keep the processor temperature reasonable. But still, for overclocking the CPU you might need an aftermarket cooler. However, the low price point of the CPU, not only makes the 3300X is best budget gaming CPU in the market, but also allows your budget for a better graphics card.

AMD Ryzen 5 3600X

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 6 / 12
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.8GHz/4.4GHz
  • Architecture: Zen 2
Best Budget Gaming CPU

The Ryzen 5 3300X is the best mid-range processor in terms of gaming and productivity. In its price point, this CPU is value for money. In terms of performance, at the base clock speed, the 3600X beat the Intel i5-9600K, which is also more expensive than the 3600X. Speaking of clock speed, the Ryzen 5 3600X tick at 3.8 GHz at stock and boost to 4.4 GHz.

Though in gaming Ryzen 5 3600X is slightly underperformed than the 9600K, but still a very good CPU for gaming. Ryzen is known for its best in terms of productivity. If you’re looking into overclocking, the Intel processor provides a better result, but you also need better cooling for that. Significantly adding to the cost. On the other hand, AMD already provided a better, capable Wraith Spire cooler.

AMD Ryzen 9 5900X

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 12 / 24
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.7GHz/4.8GHz
  • Architecture: Zen 3
Best Budget Gaming CPU

AMD Ryzen 9 5900X is currently the best CPU in the market for gaming in productivity. Thinking of gaming, streaming, or productivity tasks such as video editing or rendering, well the 5900X offers great value. The 5900X offers the ultimate in gaming performance. It is the uncontested gaming processor in the market but it is quite overkilling if you prefer only gaming.

However, in productivity workloads, this chip’s 12 cores and 24 Threads chew all the workloads with no problem at all. Making it one of the best all-rounders. Build on the latest Zen 3 Architecture, this processor offers some great features like PCIe 4.0, compatible with 500 series motherboard, excellent single-threaded and multi-threaded performance. If you are looking for the best of the best, well this is for you.

Read more: How much ram for gaming you actually required to play new triple-A games?

Intel Core i7-10700K

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 6 / 8
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.8GHz/5.1GHz
  • Architecture: Comet Lake
Best Budget Gaming CPU

With excellent gaming performance, high overclocking performance, and reasonable cooling requirements although lacking a bundled cooler the Intel Core i7 sure does have a lot to offer, priced at just under $400. Do you care all about gaming performance or you like to just prefer Intel over AMD? Well, the core i7 10700k is a faster chip with overclocking capabilities. In terms of gaming performance, the overclocked i7 10700K matches with Intel’s flagship Core i7 10900k.

The 8 cores and 16 threads of this processor operate at a 3.8 GHz base and 5.1 GHz boost. Although the Core 10 gen Intel’s processors are not fast as AMD’s 5000 series, with overclocking you can expect some extra performance from Intel. It also has integrated graphics which not the case for AMD’s 5000 series processor.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 6 / 12
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.7GHz/4.6GHz
  • Architecture: Zen 3
Best Budget Gaming CPU

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X acquire a high top spot in the gaming PC market. With 6 cores and 12 threads at a price point of $299, the 5600X beat the Intel I5-10900K in terms of gaming and application workload. From the last-gen, the price is 50% more higher. But also brings extra gaming and application performance to justify the premium. The 5600 is the most power-efficient desktop processor.

The 5600X’s six cores tick at a 3.7 GHz clock rate and a boost to 4.6 GHz. Providing great performance in gaming and productivity. With only a 65W TDP rating, this processor runs at a very low temperature, which also means low fan noise. The 5600X a well-rounded processor that can handle the latest game titles to play on a high refresh rate monitor also to streaming.

Intel Core i5-10700K

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 6 / 12
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 4.1GHz/4.8GHz
  • Architecture: Comet Lake
Best Budget Gaming CPU

For gamers who looking for a peek in gaming performance or PC enthusiasts who like to upgrade their processors without having expensive supporting components, or those who simply like Intel’s chips over AMD, the Core i5-10700K is a solid processor with a great price point. It isn’t as fast as the AMD’s Ryzen 5 5600X but has an integrated graphics processor and competitive pricing. So it’s a solid alternative.

Intel’s Core i5-10700K comes with double the Core count compared with the previous generation Core i5-9600K. It has 6 cores and 12 threads clocked at 4.1 GHz base and 4.8 GHz boost. The increased thread counts, paired with higher boost frequencies across the board, result in a much faster gameplay experience than the previous-gen Core i5. That makes this processor a great value for high-refresh-rate gaming.

Intel Core I5-8400

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 6 / 6
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 2.8GHz/4.0GHz
  • Architecture: Coffee Lake 14nm
Best Budget Gaming CPU

Intel’s 6 core coffee lake core i5 trades blow away much pricier previous generation core i7 chips. But it is most impressive when paired with a dedicated graphics card. Its pros are that it often beats the previous generation core i7 7700k flagship CPU on multi-core tests. And of course that it has the best-in-class gaming performance when paired with a dedicated graphics card.

Unfortunately, however, its cons are that it’s not unclocked for overclocking and requires a new motherboard despite the Z370 chipset offering no new features. So try and take that into consideration when deciding on whether or not you want to make your purchase. Though in terms of gaming the I5-8400 is one of the best budget gaming CPUs.

Intel Core I9-9900K

Basic Specification:

  • Cores / Threads: 8 / 16
  • Base / Max Boost Clock: 3.6GHz/5.0GHz
  • Architecture: Coffee Lake 14nm
Best Budget Gaming CPU

The Intel’s Core i9-9900k main street flagship CPU is a spirited performer no matter what you task it with. If you don’t need the RAM bandwidth or PCI express lanes of Intel’s core x or AMD’s Threadripper platforms, this chip is peak silicon for a new build. Its pros consist of having 2 more Cores in the previous top coffee lake CPU, which is a significant upgrade for those in search of good performance.

The 9900K comes with 8 Cores and 16 threads clocked at 3.6 gigahertz and 5.0 gigahertz respectively. It also has a flamethrower for multi-thread applications while also having a 5 gigahertz peak one core clock for single-threaded apps and an unlocked multiplier. Although the 9900K is not the best budget gaming CPU, it is the best gaming CPU if you have enough budget.

Conclusion

And that’s it. These are the best budget gaming CPU you can consider buying for a new PC build or if you plan to upgrade your processor for a better gaming experience. In this list, some of the CPU has higher-price and falls under flagship category. I still include those if your budget allow. Otherwise there are plenty more option to choose.

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