There are a lot of really good choices for the best CPU for gaming in the year 2023. Now that both Raptor Lake and Ryzen 7000 are out, a lot of people are using PCIe 5.0 compliance. Now, both team red and team blue fully support DDR5 RAM and PCIe 5.0 SSDs, so the future of gaming hardware will be very fast.
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Seven Top Gaming Processors in 2023
Here are the CPUs we think are the best for gaming. Find a good balance between performance, features, and your PC’s budget when looking for the best CPU for gaming. You can also look at our CPU benchmarks hierarchy to see how these processors compare to each other. Check out our 2023 CPU Buying Guide to learn more about how to choose the best processor for your gaming PC.
1. Intel Core i5-12600K
The Intel Core i5-12600K from the 12th generation is a great choice for the middle of the range. At around $300, it’s an affordable CPU with good speeds (around 3.70 GHz), but it’s the slowest one on our list. The 10-core processor has a good speed and works quickly. It has six performance cores and four efficiency cores. It has three speeds and a socket for LGA 1700.
The design uses a hyper-threading architecture, so you can count on this system to work well even with demanding programs that need a lot of power. It also has up-to-date and redesigned Intel UHD graphics. With the exclusive Intel 7 Architecture and microarchitecture built in to save power, the L3 cache can hold up to 16 MB of data. This improves performance and saves power.
2. AMD Ryzen 9 7950X
Experienced PC gamers know how important it is to be able to overclock your processor to get the most power. The AMD Ryzen 9 7950X has a base clock speed of 4.5GHz and can be boosted to 5.7GHz.
This makes it one of the fastest processors you can buy outside of high-end workstations. And with a total of 16 cores and 32 threads, the 7950X gives you lightning-fast speeds and a lot of power to start and run games with a lot of graphics. Plus, it can run almost any program you need to edit videos or photos or even model and animate in 3D.
It has AMD Radeon graphics built in, so you don’t need a separate GPU to play simple games. To get the most out of the CPU, you should pair it with a graphics card that is at least as good as an RTX 3050. Even if you don’t use Windows, you can use this CPU with the Linux Ubuntu operating system.
3. Intel Core i5-13400
The Raptor Lake Core i5-13400, which costs $221 and has 10 cores and 16 threads, and the Core i5-13400F, which doesn’t have graphics and costs $196, both improve on the performance of the previous-generation model, which has been the best mid-range gaming chip for a long time. But adding four e-cores makes performance better for threaded productivity tasks. Because it works with DDR4 memory, the 13400 is the best chip for mid-range gaming PCs. This makes it the best buy for around $200.
The chip has six P-cores that work at a base clock speed of 2.5 GHz and a boost clock speed of 4.6 GHz and support hyper-threading. For tasks that use all four e-cores at once, their top speed is 3.3 GHz. The 13400 supports cutting-edge connections like DDR4-3200 or up to DDR5-4800 memory, 16 lanes of PCIe 5.0, and four lanes of PCIe 4.0 from the chip for M.2 SSDs.
The 13400F’s main rival is the Ryzen 5 7600, which costs $229. In our 1080p tests, the Ryzen 5 7600 was 7% faster at both stock and overclocked speeds than the Core i5-13400. But the difference between the prices of these two chips isn’t as small as it might seem. This is mostly because Ryzen needs DDR5 and AMD’s B-series motherboards are expensive, which makes your build much more expensive.
Compared to the Ryzen 5 7600, the Core i5-13400/DDR4 F option and the lower prices of Intel motherboards can save $135 on the total cost of the system. Even though you have to pay 35% more for the Ryzen system and 25% more per frame to get a 7% boost in 1080p gaming performance, this makes it a much better deal overall.
4. Ryzen 7 5800X3D
AMD’s newly released L3 cache-improved X3D chips show how hard people are working to make CPUs better and better. When it comes out in the middle of 2022, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D will be AMD’s first step into 3D v-cache technology. This lets the company add more L3 cache to the chip and make gaming even faster.
The 5800X3D is the least expensive of the options on the list of the best CPUs for gaming. Still, it has great stats for a $300 part. Even if you can find cheaper options, the 5800X3D is still a gaming beast, which gives it an advantage over other products on the market. Still, that means it’s not as good as it could be at getting things done.
5. AMD Ryzen 9 7900X3D
The AMD Ryzen 9 7900X3D, which just came out and got great reviews, is one of the best CPUs for gaming and a lot of other tasks. Where the 5800X3D kind of falls short, the 7900X3D is a step up. It gives users the best of almost every world by letting them use powerful video editing and streaming features. These improvements come with a high price tag, which includes not only the chip but also the extra parts that are needed to make the 7900X3D work as well as possible.
Some of these parts, like the AM5 motherboard and the liquid water cooler, might not be the best for most people. Even better, this option is not the most expensive. The Ryzen 9 7950X3D is even more better, but it is harder to find at a good price. But for $600, the 7900X3D is a good choice if you want to be more productive and play games very well.
6. Intel Core i9-13900K
The Core i9-13900K is Intel’s fastest gaming CPU. It’s not quite as fast as AMD’s Ryzen 9 5900X3D, but it’s faster than the other Ryzen 7000 chips and has a better performance profile overall. At $569, it was better than AMD’s Ryzen 9 7950X in our gaming tests and in the most thread-intensive content creation tasks.
If you want to stream high-end games, this makes it a great deal. It is also the best way for an x86 processor to run a single thread. For the first time since AMD’s Ryzen came out in 2017, Intel now has more cores than AMD. The 13900K also has ways to connect that are up-to-date. It can use up to DDR5-5600 memory, and the chip for M.2 SSDs has 16 PCIe 5.0 lanes and 4 PCIe 4.0 lanes.
The chip has eight P-cores that can do hyperthreading and 16 E-cores that can only do one thing at a time. Together, they add up to 24 threads. With Turbo Boost Max 3.0, the P-cores have a base speed of 3.0 GHz and a top speed of 5.8 GHz. The base speed of the E-cores is 2.2 GHz, and with the standard Turbo Boost 2.0 algorithms, they can go up to 4.3 GHz. The chip also has 32MB of L2 cache and 36MB of L3 cache.
7. Intel Core i7-13700K
The Core i7-13700K, which costs $409, is much better than the Ryzen 7 7700X, which costs $399, and even better than the expensive Ryzen 9 7950X, which costs $590. It also plays games almost as well as Intel’s most expensive processor, the Core i9-13900K, which costs $589, but is much cheaper. You can also pay $395 to get rid of the graphics engine that comes with the Core i7-13700KF.
The Core i7 model is always better than the Core i9 model if you don’t need top performance for heavy productivity tasks. For its price, the Core i7-13700K is a great gaming chip with high performance. It costs $190 less than the best Core i9-13900K and can do 95% of what it can do. The 13700K is 18.8% faster than the previous generation 12700K and about the same as the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, but it beats it when it is overclocked.
Core i7-13700K is also a better choice than Ryzen when it comes to getting work done quickly. The Core i7-13700K has 24 threads, which are made up of 8 high-performance P-cores and 8 low-performance E-cores. The P-cores have a base speed of 3.4 GHz and a boost speed of 5.4 GHz. The E-cores have a base speed of 2.5 GHz and a boost speed of 4.2 GHz. Also, 30MB of L3 cache and 24MB of L2 cache feed the execution engine.
We have brought you a list of seven of our best gaming processors. We hope that you got whatever you were looking for. These processors are not just cheap or easy to afford but also powerful and compatible to your needs. You can get a very nice gaming processors for less than $400 these days, and it will run better than the average cheap processor from five years ago.