Select any two CPUs for comparison
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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core 2 Duo E8290 2.83GHz APU A6-3500 Triple-Core
Cyberpunk 2077 170% 167%
Hitman 3 263% 259%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 263% 259%
Resident Evil 8 200% 196%
FIFA 21 152% 149%
Grand Theft Auto VI 344% 338%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 162% 158%
Genshin Impact 104% 102%
The Medium 363% 357%
Far Cry 6 326% 321%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the AMD APU A6-3500 Triple-Core is marginally better than the Intel Core 2 Duo E8290 2.83GHz 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 APU A6-3500 Triple-Core was released less than a year after the Core 2 Duo, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

The APU A6-3500 Triple-Core has 1 more core than the Core 2 Duo. However, while the APU A6-3500 Triple-Core will probably perform better than the Core 2 Duo, both CPUs are likely to struggle with the latest games, and will almost certainly bottleneck high-end graphics cards. This should not affect games that are a few years old, and even the latest games should at least be playable on very low settings, as only recently have game developers begun to harness the power of multiple cores.

The APU A6-3500 Triple-Core has 1 more threads than the Core 2 Duo. Both CPUs have one thread 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 2 Duo and APU A6-3500 Triple-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 2 Duo has a 0.73 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 APU A6-3500 Triple-Core 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 Core 2 Duo has a 3072 KB bigger L2 cache than the APU A6-3500 Triple-Core, but neither of the CPUs have L3 caches, so the Core 2 Duo wins out in this area with its larger L2 cache.

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 2 Duo and the APU A6-3500 Triple-Core have the same TDP of 65 Watts, but the APU A6-3500 Triple-Core has a lower lithography size, and so will affect your yearly electricity bills less adversely.

The APU A6-3500 Triple-Core has an on-board GPU, which means that it will be capable of running basic graphics applications (i.e., games) without the need for a dedicated graphics card. The Core 2 Duo, however, does not, and you will probably have to look for a dedicated card if you wish to use it at all.

For in-depth GPU comparisons with the Radeon HD 6530D, click on the following GPU overview comparison icon (visible throughout Game-Debate), and choose a GPU from the list to compare against:

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 CodenameWolfdaleLlano
MoBo SocketLGA 775/ Socket TSocket FM1
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date10 Aug 200808 Aug 2011
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores2vs3
CPU Threads2vs3
Clock Speed2.83 GHzvs2.1 GHz
Turbo Frequency-vs2.4 GHz
Max TDP65 Wvs65 W
Lithography45 nmvs32 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Max Temperature72°Cvs71°C
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size128 KBvs384 KB
L2 Cache Size6144 KBvs3072 KB
L3 Cache Size-vs-
Memory Channels-vs2
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

GraphicsRadeon HD 6530D
Base GPU Frequency-vs443 MHz
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
DirectX-vs11
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 2 Duo E8290 2.83GHz is a middle-class Processor based on the 45nm Core micro-architecture.

It offers 2 Physical Cores (2 Logical), clocked at 2.83GHz and 6MB of L2 Cache.
Among its many features, Virtualization is activated.

The processor DOES NOT integrated any graphics. and has a rated board TDP of 65W.

It offers average performance. It will therefore become a bottleneck in today's demanding games.
APU A6-3500 Triple-Core is a performance CPU based on the 32nm, Lynx architecture.

It offers 3 Physical Cores (3 Logical), initially clocked at 2.1GHz, which may go up to 2.4GHz and 3MB of L2 Cache.

The processor integrates average Graphics called Radeon HD 6530D, with 320 Shader Processing Units, clocked at 443MHz, which share the L2 Cache and system RAM with the processor.
Both the processor and integrated graphics have a rated board TDP of 65W.

It offers average performance. This means it will become a bottleneck in some demanding applications.