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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i3-7101E 2-Core 3.9GHz Athlon II X2 270u
Cyberpunk 2077 40% 697%
eFootball PES 2020 35% 671%
Control 79% 920%
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 79% 920%
Total War: Three Kingdoms 124% 1175%
Borderlands 3 40% 697%
Grand Theft Auto VI 124% 1175%
Red Dead Redemption 2 88% 969%
F1 2019 87% 968%
Doom Eternal 35% 671%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i3-7101E 2-Core 3.9GHz is massively better than the AMD Athlon II X2 270u when it comes to running the latest games. This also means it will be less likely to bottleneck more powerful GPUs, allowing them to achieve more of their gaming performance potential.

The Athlon II X2 was released less than a year after the Core i3-7101E 2-Core, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

The Core i3-7101E 2-Core and the Athlon II X2 both have 2 cores, and so are quite likely to struggle with the latest games, or at least bottleneck high-end graphics cards when running them. With a decent accompanying GPU, the Core i3-7101E 2-Core and the Athlon II X2 may still be able to run slightly older games fairly effectively.

More important for gaming than the number of cores and threads is the clock rate. Problematically, unless the two CPUs are from the same family, this can only serve as a general guide and nothing like an exact comparison, because the clock cycles per instruction (CPI) will vary so much.

The Core i3-7101E 2-Core and Athlon II X2 are not from the same family of CPUs, so their clock speeds are by no means directly comparable. Bear in mind, then, that while the Core i3-7101E 2-Core has a 1.9 GHz faster frequency, this is not always an indicator that it will be superior in performance, despite frequency being crucial when trying to avoid GPU bottlenecking. In this case, however, the difference is probably a good indicator that the is superior.

Aside from the clock rate, the next-most important CPU features for PC game performance are L2 and L3 cache size. Faster than RAM, the more cache available, the more data that can be stored for lightning-fast retrieval. L1 Cache is not usually an issue anymore for gaming, with most high-end CPUs eking out about the same L1 performance, and L2 is more important than L3 - but L3 is still important if you want to reach the highest levels of performance. Bear in mind that although it is better to have a larger cache, the larger it is, the higher the latency, so a balance has to be struck.

The Athlon II X2 has a 1536 KB bigger L2 cache than the Core i3-7101E 2-Core, and although the Athlon II X2 does not appear to have an L3 cache, its larger L2 cache means that it wins out in this area.

The maximum Thermal Design Power is the power in Watts that the CPU will consume in the worst case scenario. The lithography is the semiconductor manufacturing technology being used to create the CPU - the smaller this is, the more transistors that can be fit into the CPU, and the closer the connections. For both the lithography and the TDP, it is the lower the better, because a lower number means a lower amount of power is necessary to run the CPU, and consequently a lower amount of heat is produced.

The Athlon II X2 has a 29 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Core i3-7101E 2-Core. However, the Core i3-7101E 2-Core was created with a 31 nm smaller manufacturing technology. Overall, by taking both into account, the Core i3-7101E 2-Core is likely the CPU with the lower heat production and power requirements, by quite a wide margin.

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CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameKaby LakeRegor
MoBo SocketNot sureSocket AM3+
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date30 Nov -000121 Sep 2010
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores2vs2
CPU Threads4vs-
Clock Speed3.9 GHzvs2 GHz
Turbo Frequency-vs-
Max TDP54 Wvs25 W
Lithography14 nmvs45 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs-
Max Temperature100°Cvs-
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size64 KBvs256 KB
L2 Cache Size512 KBvs2048 KB
L3 Cache Size3 MBvs-
Max Memory Size-vs-
Memory Channels-vs-
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

Graphicsno
Base GPU Frequency-vs-
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
DirectX-vs-
Displays Supported-vs-
Comparison

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size-vs-
Revision-vs-
PCIe Revision-vs-
PCIe Configurations-vs-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe Core i3-7101E 2-Core 3.9GHz is a Middle-Class CPU based on Intel's 7th Gen 14nm, Kaby Lake microarchitecture. It offers 2 physical cores (4 logical), clocked at 3.9GHz. It doesn't have an unlocked multiplier therefore it can't be overclocked using traditional methods. It has 3MB of L3 Cache. Level 3 cache is a static memory bank of a processor and it is used to feed it instructions. This processor also supports DDR4 based RAMs with maximum memory support of 64GB. It has a maximum Thermal Power Design of 54W. It is on par with competitor processors. Among its many features, Intel Enhanced Speedstep, HyperThreading and Virtualization are activated. It integrates Intel HD Graphics 630 on board. It has a base frequency of 350MHz which can go up to 1GHz as well as offering DirectX 12 support. This CPU is likely to offer good computational performance but may suffer from performance dips on higher resolutions and demanding applications.The Athlon II series is based on the AMD K10 architecture and derived from the Phenom II series. However, unlike its Phenom siblings, it does not contain any L3 Cache. There are two Athlon II dies: the dual-core Regor die with 1 MB L2 Cache per core and the four-core Propus with 512 KB per core. Regor is a native dual-core design with lower TDP and additional L2 to offset the removal of L3 cache. The three core Rana is derived from the Propus quad-core design, with one core disabled.

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