Select any two CPUs for comparison
VS

Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i7-3612QM 4-Core 2.1GHz APU A8-3520M Quad-Core
Cyberpunk 2077 10% 290%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 47% 425%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 6% 278%
Watch Dogs Legion 47% 425%
FIFA 21 2% 265%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 24% 342%
Godfall 112% 653%
Grand Theft Auto VI 80% 541%
World of Warcraft: Shadowlands 70% 507%
Genshin Impact 17% 195%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i7-3612QM 4-Core 2.1GHz is massively better than the AMD APU A8-3520M Quad-Core 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 i7-3612QM 4-Core was released less than a year after the APU A8-3520M Quad-Core, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

The Core i7-3612QM 4-Core and the APU A8-3520M Quad-Core both have 4 cores, which is not likely to be a limiting factor for gaming.

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 i7-3612QM 4-Core and APU A8-3520M Quad-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 i7-3612QM 4-Core has a 0.5 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 enough that it possibly indicates the superiority of the .

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 APU A8-3520M Quad-Core has a 3072 KB bigger L2 cache than the Core i7-3612QM 4-Core, and although the APU A8-3520M Quad-Core 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.

Both the Core i7-3612QM 4-Core and the APU A8-3520M Quad-Core have the same TDP of 35 Watts, but the Core i7-3612QM 4-Core has a lower lithography size, and so will affect your yearly electricity bills less adversely.

The Core i7-3612QM 4-Core and the APU A8-3520M Quad-Core both have an on-board GPU, which means that they will be capable of running basic graphics applications (i.e., games) without the need for a dedicated graphics card.

For an in-depth GPU comparison, click on the GPU comparison icon that you can find throughout Game-Debate:

On-board GPUs tend to be fairly awful in comparison to dedicated cards from the likes of AMD or Nvidia, but as they are built into the CPU, they also tend to be cheaper and require far less power to run (this makes them a good choice for laptops). We would recommend a dedicated card for running the latest games, but integrated GPUs are improving all the time and casual gamers may find less recent games perform perfectly acceptably.

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameIvy BridgeLlano
MoBo SocketBGA 1224Socket FS1
Notebook CPUyesyes
Release Date29 Apr 201230 Dec 2011
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores4vs4
CPU Threads8vs-
Clock Speed2.1 GHzvs1.6 GHz
Turbo Frequency3.1 GHzvs-
Max TDP35 Wvs35 W
Lithography22 nmvs32 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs-
Max Temperature105°Cvs-
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size256 KBvs512 KB
L2 Cache Size1024 KBvs4096 KB
L3 Cache Size6 MBvs-
Max Memory Size-vs-
Memory Channels-vs-
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

GraphicsIntel HD Graphics 4000 MobileRadeon HD 6620G
Base GPU Frequency650 MHzvs444 MHz
Max GPU Frequency1350 MHzvs-
DirectX11vs11
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 ReviewCore i7-3612QM 4-Core 2.1GHz is an energy efficient mobile processor based on the 22nm, Ivy Bridge microarchitecture.

It offers 4 Physical Cores (8 Logical), initially clocked at 2.1GHz, which may go up to 3.1GHz and 6MB of L3 Cache.
Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost and Virtualization are activated.

The processor integrates mildly powerful Integrated Graphics called Intel HD Graphics 4000, with 16 Execution Units, initially clocked at 650MHz and that go up to 1100MHz, in Turbo Mode which share the L2 Cache and system RAM with the processor.
Both the processor and integrated graphics have a rated board TDP of 35W.

Its performance is very good and sufficient for any of today's games.