Which CPU should I buy? is the basic question that comes to anybody’s mind when he decides to purchase a computer, the task is highly confusing due to the high amount of configurations available in the market. CPU or Central Processing Unit is the main part of any computer that performs all the thinking and processing works, it analyzes the commands provided by you and process them to provide you with the desired results. But a CPU too consists of various other parts that help it to think, like motherboard, processors, graphics card, RAM are some of its main parts that help it to provide you with the desired results.
The CPU matters a lot, whether you’re upgrading your existing system or building a new PC as a higher clock speed and core count can make a major difference in performance, while providing smoother gameplay and faster completion of intensive tasks such as video editing, graphic designing and coding. Additionally , the CPU you choose will also dictate your motherboard options, as each processor only works with some specific CPU socket and set of chipsets.
What CPU Should I Buy?
When you’re out buying a CPU, you’ll have to decide on which is the best processor available currently or else wait n watch what the next-generation chips offer. AMD’s Ryzen 3 CPUs have continued to impress overall in the low budget segment, while Intel continues to iterate on its 14nm Skylake-based architecture which means that despite price drops on a per-core basis, Intel’s Core i9 10th gen is not that impressive, though the Core i5 10th gen is much more appealing to those primarily concerned with gaming and mainstream computing tasks.
Still, those Intel CPUs have been hard to find since launch, while the Ryzen 7 37000X and 3800X are easily available and are considered great alternatives that also come with in-box coolers. The 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X brings even more performance to the “mainstream” CPU market that can easily get a nod over the Intel’s top-end mainstream 10th gen processors.
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Which CPU Should I Buy? – Features
There are various features that you should look for while buying the CPU of your dream. Whether you want to upgrade your system or buy a new system the features given below will help you out significantly to lay your hands on the best Central processor so that you can carry out your work without any hiccups, lags or any other obstructions. To buy the best CPU you need to know the various specification details that each CPU models provide and the pieces of information shared below ill significantly help you out with that task.
A Core is a processor within a processor. Therefore, if one core does a discrete task, the other one can do something else. Almost all the laptops have a minimum of two cores. The higher-end models have four cores or eight cores.
It is a process where the CPU splits each physical core into virtual cores, also known as threads. The Intel’s dual-core CPUs use hyper-threading to provide four threads while the quad-core CPUs provide eight threads and the octa-core CPUs provide 16 threads making them the most powerful unit out there.
The clock speed is the number of cycles per second that the CPU can execute. The unit of measurement is GHz and the higher the number, the better it is. Still, it is not the only factor that determines the processor speed.
The Turbo Boost function enhances the clock speed temporarily from its base frequency to a higher one to complete a task quickly. The Core i3 models do not have this feature whereas most of the Core i5 and Core i7 have it.
Most of the time arises where you need frequently used information to complete repetitive tasks this is done through cache memory. The cache is a small amount of RAM directly on the CPU and most of them have about 1 MB to 4 MB of cache.
Thermal Design Power (TDP)
The TDP or Thermal Design Power is the number of watts the CPU uses. A better performance will need a higher usage. However, it can result in higher power consumption and temperatures.
Processors to Look For
There are various processors to choose from Intel as well as AMD.
- Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 3
- Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5
- Intel Core i7 or AMD Ryzen 7
- Intel Core i9 or AMD Ryzen 9
Intel releases a new processor generation every 12 to 18 months. To keep the pace with the generations, Intel provide new generation that are faster and more efficient than the earlier ones. However, they do not move the processor line to the new generation at the same time. Let us look at some Intel CPU platforms released over the years.
- 5th Generation – Broadwell – Released in 2014
- 6th Generation – Skylake – 2015
- 7th Generation – Kaby Lake – 2016
- 8th Generation – Kaby Lake Refresh, Kaby Lake G, and Coffee Lake – 2017 and 2018
- 9th Generation – Skylake microarchitecture, Coffee lake Refresh microarchitecture – 2018
- 10th Generation – Cascade Lake Miroarchitecture, Ice Lake Microarchitecture – 2020
Choosing the Core i5 over the Core i3 is always advisable. However, you should also know the importance of the processor or product lines. Intel has four main lines, each having its set of Core i3s, i5s, and i7s. Each of these lines has its TDPs ranging from 4.5 Watts to 45 Watts. While AMD can also be a great viable option.
ENTRY-LEVEL CPU Should I Buy
The entry-level processor lines are for those who want a system just to perform some simple tasks that don’t require high specifications on a PC, this is where you’d want to start. All combinations in this section of Intel i3 processors or AMD Ryzen 3 processors have an iGPU except the Intel Core i3-9100F, while you can also get a cheap graphics card to run some low-end graphic works but avoiding them can be great way to save money on the CPU and spend the savings on a better GPU.
MID-RANGE CPU Should I Buy
Things start to get interesting as you enter the mid range segment as with the introduction of the new AMD Ryzen 3, it seems like a entry-level processor line, but it turns out that they have enough horsepower to put the Intel Core i7 to shame. You’ll find fewer combinations in this segment with integrated graphics as more people tend to opt for a discrete GPU. It’s just the Intel CPUs and the lone Ryzen 5 that have built-in graphics.
It would also appear that most Intel combinations are very expensive and going with the current market rates for the Intel processors are higher than their AMD counterparts and the motherboards are equally pricier. The two together drive up costs too much.
HIGH-END CPU Should I Buy
When you really want to be a hardcore gamer with no holds barred and get a good all-rounder machine that’s destined to last a couple of years easily, then these are the combinations that you should be looking at. Most CPUs in this high-end segment have 8 core / 16 threads and are also really good overclockers. The AMD 2nd Gen Ryzen 7 being an exception since it’s from an older generation, but AMD has made decent improvements to clock speeds with the 3rd Gen Ryzens and it really shows.
If it was a pure frequency-based competition, then Intel easily moves ahead, but since core counts are being utilised by a lot more applications, the overall performance of AMD processors leaves Intel behind.
WORKSTATION CPU Should I Buy
When you are out choosing a CPU should I buy, a workstation is the best CPU so far in the world and is highly used by the digital media professionals and to set them at home or at the office will take all the cores that you can throw at them. With the introduction of the new AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors, it has made this task quite simple. These massive core-count processors are just shy of being called servers but they are so amazingly build that even server processors from two years ago will be ashamed of their configurations.
None of these processors have integrated graphics simply because no person buying a work-station processor is going to skip on getting a powerful graphics card to match.
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When choosing a CPU, first ask what you’re going to do with it, then see how much you can budget for it after you’ve figured out how much you’re spending on other components like your SSD, RAM, GPU and PSU. While processors are important, there’s no point in pairing a high-speed chip with weak graphics or a slow, spinning mechanical hard drive if you are not that of a gaming type of person.
Going through all the above pieces of information about specs like clock speed and thread count is highly beneficial and will easily eliminate the confusing question, which CPU should I buy, and help you to land the best CPU making you the best gamer or designer in town. So, quickly buy the best gaming cpu.