GuidesComparisonsIntel Core i3 Vs AMD Ryzen 3: Our Recommendation

Intel Core i3 Vs AMD Ryzen 3: Our Recommendation

We compare Intel and AMD's entry-level gaming CPU lineups in Core i3 vs Ryzen 3 to find the better lineup for budget PC gaming.

Expert Verified By

Intel Core i3

Rated: 7/10

AMD Ryzen 3

Rated: 4/10

Key Takeaways
  • Intel’s Core i3 CPU (12100F) was 42% faster in 1080P gaming than a Ryzen 3 (4100) CPU of the same price ($99) and year. 
  • All the AMD Ryzen 3 CPUs support overclocking, but only a few Core i3 CPUs support overclocking.
  • All CPUs from the Core i3 lineup contain integrated graphics, but not all Ryzen 3 CPUs have integrated graphics. 
  • Both the Core i3 and Ryzen 3 CPUs have similar power consumption numbers. 

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With how powerful CPUs have gotten over the last few years, many people can make do with the current entry-level chips as their daily drivers, but how do they stack against one another? Read our Core i3 vs Ryzen 3 comparison to find out!

Architectural Differences

This part of our comparison will focus on the difference in the build of the Core i3 and Ryzen 3 processors.

Core And Thread Counts

Core i3 CPUs initially had 2 cores and 4 threads until the 8th generation. Hyperthreading was introduced in the 10th generation, maintaining the 4 core/8 thread configuration through the 13th generation.

Initially, most Ryzen 3 CPUs had 4 cores/4 threads. With the Ryzen 3000 series, AMD moved to 4 cores/8 threads, although APUs initially kept the 4 cores/4 threads configuration. APUs were later upgraded to 4 cores/8 threads starting from the Ryzen 3 4000 series chips.

L3 Cache

Ryzen 3 CPUs typically offer 8 MB of L3 cache, with exceptions such as the Ryzen 3 4100 (4 MB) and the Ryzen 3 3100 and 3300X (16 MB each). In contrast, earlier Intel Core i3 models varied, with higher-end versions providing 4 MB or 8 MB of L3 cache and lower-end ones having 3 MB or 6 MB.

However, starting from the 12th generation, all Core i3 CPUs come with 12 MB of L3 cache. Comparing specific models, Core i3 or Ryzen 3 may have a higher L3 cache, but in newer generations like the 12th, Core i3 CPUs typically have the advantage.

Integrated Graphics

All desktop Core i3 CPUs have integrated graphics built into the chip, including low-power “T” CPUs. On the other hand, only Ryzen 3 CPUs with theGsuffix contain integrated graphics – these chips are classified instead as APUs (accelerated processing units). 


Only Core i3 CPUs with the K suffix support overclocking. Depending on the generation, you can also use BCLK overclocking or Intel’s Turbo Boost technology for newer models. On AMD’s side, all the Ryzen 3 CPUs, including G and GE variants, are overclockable by default. 

Power Draw

All Ryzen 3 CPUs aim for power efficiency, with a standard TDP rating of 65 watts and “E” SKUs drawing less power at 35 watts. Recent Core i3 CPUs also have similar or lower TDP ratings. For example, the 13th generation Core i3-13100 has a base TDP of 60 watts, while power-efficient SKUs are rated at 35 watts.

Performance Benchmarks – 1080p

It’s difficult to compare the performance of the Ryzen 3 vs Core i3 lineups, but we can look at the performance of two CPUs launched around the same time at similar price points.

Test Bench

God of War

 God of War at 1080P resolution.
God of War – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • In God of War, the Core i3-12100F achieves a solid average of 143 FPS, while the Ryzen 3 4100 trails behind by 40.1%, averaging around 102 FPS.
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 is also comprehensively beaten regarding the %1 low, managing 61 FPS compared to 97 FPS of the Core i3-12100F. 

Grand Theft Auto 5

Grand Theft Auto 5 at 1080P resolution.
Grand Theft Auto 5 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • Intel’s Core i3-12100F racks up 100 FPS on average in our GTA V test, and the Ryzen 3 4100 counters that with 75 FPS
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 only manages 45 FPS in terms of %1 lows, while the Core i3-12100F scores 68 FPS

Forza Horizon 5

Forza Horizon 5 at 1080P resolution.
Forza Horizon 5 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • Both the CPUs perform quite well, but there’s still a significant gap between them. The Core i3-12100F averages 195 FPS, while the Ryzen 3 4100 scores 155 FPS
  • Moving to the %1 lows, the Intel Core i3 12100F scores 129 FPS, and the Ryzen 3 4100 is 30% behind with 99 FPS


CS:GO at 1080P resolution.
CS:GO – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • In CS:GO, the Core i3-12100F achieves an impressive average of 521 FPS, surpassing the Ryzen 3 4100 by a significant margin of 91%, with the latter achieving around 272 FPS.
  • The Core i3-12100F recorded 142 FPS in terms of %1 lows; the AMD Ryzen 3 4100 scored 91 FPS in reply. 

Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption 2 at 1080P resolution.
Red Dead Redemption 2 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • In Red Dead Redemption 2, the Core i3-12100F secures a notable victory with an average of 112 FPS, outperforming the Ryzen 3 4100’s average of 77 FPS by 45%.
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 falls below the 60 FPS mark when it comes to the %1 lows, while the Core i3-12100F still maintains a healthy 81 FPS

Cyberpunk 2077

Cyberpunk 2077 at 1080P resolution.
Cyberpunk 2077 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • Yet again, the Core i3-12100F is the better CPU of the two, outscoring the Ryzen 3 4100 by 76% in our Cyberpunk test. It achieved a framerate of 90 FPS, while the Ryzen only achieved a framerate of around 51 FPS.
  • Coming to the %1 lows, the Intel processor showed twice as much performance – the Ryzen 3 4100 scores 30 FPS, and the Core i3-12100F scores 60 FPS

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds 

PlayersUnknown's Battlegrounds at 1080P resolution.
PUBG – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 scores 75 FPS on average, and Intel’s Core i3-12100F counters that with 115 FPS
  • Both the CPUs show terrible %1 lows – the Ryzen 3 4100 scores only 26 FPS, while the Core i3-12100F scores 43 FPS. This indicates poor game optimization. 

Microsoft Flight Simulator

 Microsoft Flight Simulator at 1080P resolution.
Microsoft Flight Simulator – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • The Core i3-12100F comes out on top again with 121 FPS in MS Flight Sim 2020. The Ryzen 3 4100 scores 90 FPS – a 34% difference. 
  • Intel’s Core i3-12100F falls to 90 FPS in terms of the %1 lows, while the Ryzen 3 4100 drops to 66 FPS

Days Gone

 Days Gone at 1080P resolution.
Days Gone – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • Another significant victory for the Core i3-12100F is recorded as it scores 156 FPS compared to 105 FPS of the Ryzen 3 4100. 
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 scores 41 FPS during the lowest %1 frame time, while the Core i3-12100F still scores a hefty 74 FPS

Hitman 3

Hitman 3 at 1080P resolution.
Hitman 3 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
  • In Hitman 3, the Core i3-12100F wins by a 54% difference in average framerates. The 12100F had a framerate of 133 FPS in this game while the 4100 had a framerate of 86 FPS.
  • The Ryzen 3 4100 scores 56 FPS at the %1 lows, trailing the Core i3-12100F by 55% with a framerate of 87 FPS

Overall Performance Comparison

FeaturedCore i3-12100FRyzen 3 4100
Average FPS129 ๐Ÿ“ˆ90 ๐Ÿ“ˆ
%1 lows81 ๐Ÿ“‰53 ๐Ÿ“‰
Winner: Intel's Core i3-12100F

In our 1080p gaming tests, the Core i3-12100F performed 42% higher than the Ryzen on average, completely dominating its competitor. The difference between the two chips was night and day, and it was very noticeable while gaming.

Price And Value

CPULaunch MSRPCurrent Price
Core i3 14100F๐Ÿ’ฒ109๐Ÿ’ฒ109
Ryzen 3 8300G ๐Ÿ’ฒ176๐Ÿ’ฒ149
Core i3 13100F๐Ÿ’ฒ109๐Ÿ’ฒ89
Ryzen 3 4100๐Ÿ’ฒ99๐Ÿ’ฒ65
Core i3 12100F๐Ÿ’ฒ99๐Ÿ’ฒ75

Though this tier of processors is not as wide as the rest, it still encompasses a wide price range from around $100 to $200. The newest entry in this series is the 8300G, which is substantially more pricier than its competition. Still, AMD is a bit cheaper in the long run.

Our Verdict

A table comparing the AMD's Ryzen 3 lineup to Intel's Core i3 lineup
Intel Core i3 vs AMD Ryzen 3 – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
Intel Core i3: From our comparison of fairly recent models of the two chips, the Core i3 came out much superior. Though it came at a higher price, it showed much better performance, to the point where its rival was put to shame in our gaming tests.

AMD Ryzen 3: Though these chips generally cost less than Intel processors, they exhibit poor performance. Our comparison showed that the Ryzen 3 4100 performed half as well as the Core i3-12100F in some titles, which negates its cheaper price tag.

So, to conclude our Ryzen 3 vs Core i3 comparison, the Core i3 lineup is much better than the Ryzen 3 lineup as it stands. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Intel Core i3 better than AMD Ryzen 3?

Intel’s Core i3 lineup is better than AMD Ryzen 3 regarding integrated graphics and variety. Depending upon the particular CPUs, Core i3 may also be faster. For example, the Core i3-12100F is faster than the Ryzen 3 4100.

Can an Intel Core i3 CPU be overclocked?

Only the Core i3 CPUs with the “K” suffix can be overclocked. You can still try overclocking your CPU using BCLK or Intel’s Turbo Boost option.

Is Intel Core i3 more expensive than AMD Ryzen 3? 

While some Core i3 CPUs may cost close to $150, most of them still cost around the $100 mark, which is the same price for an average Ryzen 3 CPU.

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