Select any two CPUs for comparison
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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Athlon II X3 450 Core 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz
Cyberpunk 2077 199% 147%
Hitman 3 303% 232%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 303% 232%
Resident Evil 8 232% 174%
FIFA 21 180% 131%
Grand Theft Auto VI 392% 306%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 190% 139%
Genshin Impact 127% 87%
The Medium 413% 324%
Far Cry 6 372% 290%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz is noticeably better than the AMD Athlon II X3 450 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 X3 was released over a year more recently than the Core 2 Duo, and so the Athlon II X3 is likely to have better levels of support, and will be more optimized for running the latest games.

The Athlon II X3 has 1 more core than the Core 2 Duo. However, while the Athlon II X3 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.

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 Athlon II X3 and Core 2 Duo 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 Athlon II X3 has a 0.04 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 2 Duo has a 4608 KB bigger L2 cache than the Athlon II X3, 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.

The Core 2 Duo has a 30 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Athlon II X3 (though they were created with the same size 45 nm manufacturing technology). What this means is the Core 2 Duo 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 CodenameRanaWolfdale
MoBo SocketSocket AM3+LGA 775/ Socket T
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date21 Sep 201010 Aug 2008
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores3vs2
CPU Threads-vs2
Clock Speed3.2 GHzvs3.16 GHz
Turbo Frequency-vs-
System Bus -vs1333 MHz
Max TDP95 Wvs65 W
Lithography45 nmvs45 nm
Bit Width-vs64 Bit
Max Temperature-vs72°C
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size384 KBvs128 KB
L2 Cache Size1536 KBvs6144 KB
L3 Cache Size-vs-
Memory Channels-vs2
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

Battlefield 3vs
The Elder Scrolls Vvs
Crysis 2vs
Need for Speed: Most Wantedvs
Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe 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.Core 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz is a middle-class Processor based on the 45nm Core micro-architecture.

It offers 2 Physical Cores (2 Logical), clocked at 3.16GHz 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.