1.4
Check Prices $117
9.7
Check Prices $1059
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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i3-8100 4-Core 3.6GHz Core i7-3970X 6-Core 3.50GHz
Red Dead Redemption 2 45% 19%
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 8% 40%
Cyberpunk 2077 24% 31%
Fortnite: Chapter 2 20% 56%
Need For Speed Heat 23% 32%
The Outer Worlds 58% 12%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 58% 12%
Zombieland: Double Tap - Road Trip 45% 19%
Borderlands 3 45% 19%
FIFA 20 4% 42%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i7-3970X 6-Core 3.50GHz is massively better than the Intel Core i3-8100 4-Core 3.6GHz 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 Core i3-8100 4-Core was released over three years more recently than the Core i7-3970X 6-Core, and so the Core i3-8100 4-Core is likely to have far better levels of support, and will be much more optimized and ultimately superior to the Core i7-3970X 6-Core when running the latest games.

Both CPUs exhibit very powerful performance, so it probably isn't worth upgrading from one to the other, as both are capable of running even the most demanding games at the highest settings (assuming they are accompanied by equivalently powerful GPUs).

The Core i7-3970X 6-Core has 2 more cores than the Core i3-8100 4-Core. 6 cores is probably excessive if you mean to just run the latest games, as games are not yet able to harness this many cores. The cores in the Core i3-8100 4-Core is more than enough for gaming purposes.

The Core i7-3970X 6-Core has 8 more threads than the Core i3-8100 4-Core. The Core i3-8100 4-Core has one thread per physical core, whereas the Core i7-3970X 6-Core uses hyperthreading and has 2 logical threads per physical core.

Multiple threads are useful for improving the performance of multi-threaded applications. Additional cores and their accompanying thread will always be beneficial for multi-threaded applications. Hyperthreading will be beneficial for applications optimized for it, but it may slow others down. For games, the number of threads is largely irrelevant, as long as you have at least 2 cores (preferably 4), and hyperthreading can sometimes even hit performance.

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 i3-8100 4-Core and Core i7-3970X 6-Core 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 i3-8100 4-Core has a 0.1 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. As such, we need to look elsewhere for more reliable comparisons.

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 Core i7-3970X 6-Core has a 512 KB bigger L2 cache than the Core i3-8100 4-Core, which means that it, at worst, wins out in this area, and at best, will provide superior gaming performance and will work much better with high-end graphics cards.

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 Core i3-8100 4-Core has a 85 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Core i7-3970X 6-Core, and was created with a 18 nm smaller manufacturing technology. What this means is the Core i3-8100 4-Core will consume significantly less power and consequently produce less heat, enabling more prolonged computational tasks with fewer adverse effects. This will lower your yearly electricity bill significantly, as well as prevent you from having to invest in extra cooling mechanisms (unless you overclock).

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameCoffee LakeSandy Bridge-E
MoBo SocketFCLGA1151LGA 2011/Socket R
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date05 Oct 201701 Nov 2012
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores4vs6
CPU Threads4vs12
Clock Speed3.6 GHzvs3.5 GHz
Turbo Frequency3.6 GHzvs4 GHz
Max TDP65 Wvs150 W
Lithography14 nmvs32 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Max Temperature-vs66.8°C
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size-vs384 KB
L2 Cache Size1024 KBvs1536 KB
L3 Cache Size6 MBvs15 MB
Max Memory Size-vs64 GB
Max Memory Bandwidth-vs51.2 GB/s
Memory Channels-vs4
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

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

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size-vs52.5mm x 45.0mm
Revision-vs-
PCIe Revision-vs2
PCIe Configurations-vs2

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe Intel Core i3-8100 4-Core 3.6GHz is a low-end CPU based on Intel's 8th Gen 14nm, Coffee Lake microarchitecture. It offers 4 physical cores clocked at 3.6GHz. It is one of the first ever Intel Core i3 quad-core CPUs. It does not have an unlocked multiplier and cannot be overclocked. It has 6MB 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 65W. It is on par with competitor processors. Among its many features, Intel Enhanced Speedstep 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. As of 2017 it is the second most powerful Core i3 CPU Intel has ever released, while its four-cores make it an excellent choice budget choice for gaming.Core i7-3970X 6-Core 3.5GHz is an extreme processor based on the 32nm, Sandy Bridge architecture.

It offers 6 Physical Cores (12 Logical), initially clocked at 3.5GHz, which may go up to 4.0GHz and 15MB of L3 Cache.
Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost and Virtualization are activated and the processor has multiplier unlocked.

The processor DOES NOT integrated any graphics. and has a rated board TDP of 130W.

Compared to Core i7-3770K there's an overall 34% performance boost. Its performance is exceptionally good and enough for even the most demanding applications.

Vendor-Specific Features

Intel Quick Sync VideoIntel Quick Sync Video
Intel InTru 3DIntel InTru 3D
Intel InsiderIntel Insider
Intel Wireless DisplayIntel Wireless Display
Intel Flexible DisplayIntel Flexible Display
Intel Clear Video HDIntel Clear Video HD
Intel vProIntel vPro
Intel Hyper-ThreadingIntel Hyper-Threading
Intel Virt. Tech. for Directed I/OIntel Virt. Tech. for Directed I/O
Intel Trusted ExecutionIntel Trusted Execution
AES New InstructionsAES New Instructions
Intel Anti-TheftIntel Anti-Theft
Idle StatesIdle States
Intel SpeedStepIntel SpeedStep
Thermal MonitoringThermal Monitoring
Execute Disable BitExecute Disable Bit
Intel VT-x with EPTIntel VT-x with EPT
Embedded OptionsEmbedded Options

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