7 Best CPU & GPU Combos in 2022 (Budget, Mid-tier, High-end)

Best GPU and CPU Combo

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In today’s article, we’re going to dive deep into the 7 best CPU and GPU combos in 2022 to help you get the perfect one for your next build and save some money in the process. With so many choices in the world of graphics cards and processors, picking which ones go together well can be especially difficult.

Knowing which GPU gets along best with each CPU is something that can help you immensely when building or upgrading your PC, and ideally, you want to get the best parts for the job. It’s our job at PC Mecca to check out all of the latest hardware and find out which ones are best for certain uses.

If you are a video editor or gamer, you are going to have different needs than someone just looking to use their PC for office work. Additionally, if you have a limited budget, knowing the best CPU and GPU for the job takes a lot of weight off your shoulders when putting together your PC build.

7 Best CPU & GPU Combos in 2022 Round-Up

The table below will give you a quick look at the seven best CPU and GPU combos currently available on the market. To read a full review, simply click on ‘review>>’ in the respective row.

Product

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Rating

1. Intel Core i9-13900K + Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090

''The Best CPU & GPU Combo Money Can Buy in 2022''

9.9

2. Intel Core i7-13700KF + Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080

''Best Value for High-end Gamers and Creatives''

9.8

3. AMD Ryzen 5 7600X + Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti

''Best for 1440p Gaming and Creatives''

9.7

4. AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5975WX + AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX

''Best for Workstations''

9.6

5. Intel Core i5-13600KF + Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060

''Excellent CPU & GPU Combo for 1080p Gaming''

9.5

6. AMD Ryzen 5 5500 + Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti

''Best for Light 1080p Gaming''

9.2

7. Intel Core i3 10100F + Nvidia GeForce GT 1030

''Best Starter Combo''

8.7



1. Intel Core i9-13900K + Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090

”The Best CPU & GPU Combo Money Can Buy in 2022”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Raptor Lake | Socket: LGA 1700 | Cores: 24 | Threads: 32 | Base Frequency: 3.0 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 5.8 GHz | TDP: 125 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 16.384 | Base Clock: 2.235 MHz | Boost Clock: 2.520 MHz | Memory: 24 GB GDDR6X | Memory Clock Speed: 21.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 384-bit


Intel Core i9-13900K + Nvidia RTX 4090

REASONS TO BUY

  • By far the best CPU and GPU combo you can buy in 2022
  • Unmatched processing power
  • Superior performance for 4K, high refresh rate gaming
  • Excellent combo for professional creators and small businesses
  • Overall 15-20% performance boost compared to the previous generation
  • Future-proofed
  • Bragging rights

REASONS TO AVOID

  • Very power-hungry
  • The RTX 4090 is huge; make sure you’ve got enough room in your case
  • Premium price 

Our Rating:   9.9/10

We’re going to start off our list with the best of the best; the Intel Core i9-13900K + Nvidia RTX 4090 are the most powerful processor and graphics card combination that money can buy in 2022.

If you find yourself doing a variety of tasks, such as video editing, graphic designing, 3D rendering, or even streaming, having the best hardware possible will make your experience all the better.

Additionally, if you’re looking to play games on the highest settings on a 4K monitor with a high refresh rate, this combo will deliver excellent frame rates, no matter the game you’re playing.

We’ll get the drawbacks and disadvantages out of the way early because, realistically, there aren’t many. The biggest drawback to this combination is that it is simply expensive–If you are on a budget, you may want to consider other options.

Besides that, if you’re a casual user, you won’t ever use all of the incredible raw processing power this combo offers, meaning you’d be wasting your money anyways.

Other disadvantages to this GPU and CPU combo are the space and power requirements; you need a lot of both! The Intel Core i9 is one of the most power-hungry processors on the market, and the RTX 4090 is no less guilty. If you don’t have at least a 1000-watt power supply, you will need to get one.

Additionally, you’ll want to make sure you have a very large PC case to house your parts since the RTX 4090 is simply massive, much bigger than any other card on the market.

If you’re willing to put up with these drawbacks, though, the Intel Core i9-13900K is a truly impressive CPU. You’ll need a socket LGA1700 motherboard to run this processor, which will add a bit of expense to your PC build, but once you get past that, you are left to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Although, if you’re upgrading a 12th-generation CPU, you’ll be all set.

The Intel Core i9-13900K is a 24-core hyperthreaded beast of a CPU with 32 threads and a base clock speed of 3 GHz. When called upon, this processor can boost its core clock speed up to 5.80 GHz, which is a marginal improvement over its predecessor.

What’s more, when overclocked, you can reach clock speeds even higher if you really want to push the envelope. When liquid-cooled, you can expect speeds of 6.5 GHz+. The highest recorded speed of the 13900k was an astonishing 8.8 GHz, becoming the new world record.

If you’re comparing the Intel Core i9-13900K to the previous generation, you’ll find that Intel has sufficiently improved performance output thanks to the new Raptor Lake architecture.

Benchmarks showed an effective increase of 10%+ over the previous generation in both single and multi-core performance. If you already have a 12th-generation Core i9, it may not be worth upgrading, but if you are coming from a much older CPU, the improvements will be noticeable.

We didn’t have to do a lot of searching to find the ideal graphics card to pair with such a legendary CPU. The RTX 4090 came on the scene in October of 2022 and immediately shattered benchmark records of every other GPU ever released, especially in gaming benchmarks. Currently, there is no better card for high-resolution gaming.

Loaded with 24GB of DDR6X Vram and combined with a 384-bit memory bus width, the RTX 4090 has more than enough power behind it to tackle any graphics-intensive task. Besides excelling in video editing and rendering, this GPU really shines at 4K gaming.

We compiled benchmarks from some of the most demanding popular games to get a feel for how the RTX 4090 performs, and the results are just what you would expect from the best GPU on the market. The fact is that the RTX 4090 is complete overkill for every game out there, especially with DLSS 3. But if you’re looking to invest in a card that’s also future-proof, there is no better option.

At 4k, we tested a couple of games, and the results were impressive, to say the least. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla run stable with 120+ FPS, and Watch Dogs: Legion showed average frame rates around the 90 FPS mark, even on the highest possible settings. Far Cry 6 was even more impressive, showing an average of around 110 FPS, again on the highest settings with Ray Tracing on.

Additionally, Cyberpunk 2077, a notoriously demanding and difficult-to-run game, maxed out at around 55 FPS on average, even on Ultra settings and 4K resolution. Benchmarks for lower resolutions are even higher, but with a card like this, there is no reason to game on anything less than 4k ultra HD.

All in all, if you’re looking to build a versatile and future-proof PC for 4K gaming, streaming, and video editing, there is no better CPU and GPU combo than the Intel Core i9-13900K and Nvidia RTX 4090. If money is no object and you want the best of the best, this combo won’t let you down. Just make sure you’ve got a powerful PSU to power these chips and ample room in your case to accommodate the RTX 4090.

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2. Intel Core i7-13700KF + Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080

”Best Value for High-end Gamers and Creatives”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Raptor Lake | Socket: LGA 1700 | Cores: 16 | Threads: 24 | Base Frequency: 3.4 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 5.4 GHz | TDP: 125 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 9.728 | Base Clock: 2.210 MHz | Boost Clock: 2.510 MHz | Memory: 16 GB GDDR6X | Memory Clock Speed: 22.400 MHz | Memory Interface: 256-bit


Intel Core i7-13700KF + Nvidia RTX 4080

REASONS TO BUY

  • Excellent performance for the money
  • Fantastic combo for both 1440p and 4k gaming
  • Lots of processing power for video editing and 3D rendering
  • 20% less performance compared to the i9 and 4090, but 40% savings
  • Doesn’t require anything special in terms of motherboard
  • Fairly power efficient (even compared to AMD chips)

REASONS TO AVOID

  • Less VRAM for heavy rendering
  • Still over $1000

Our Rating:   9.8/10

If you can’t afford or simply don’t need the raw processing power of the RTX 4090 and the i9 combo, we’ve got for you an excellent option that performs similarly while letting you save nearly $1000. Enter the Intel Core i7-13700KF and the Nvidia RTX 4080, a killer combination for the majority of applications.

If you enjoy playing games in 4K and streaming, this combo won’t let you down in the slightest. What works well for gaming inevitably works great for video editing and content creation as well. Most importantly, for around 20% less performance across various applications, you’re saving 40% more compared to the i9 and RTX 4090–So in terms of value, this combo wins by a long margin, especially if we only talk gaming.

The 16-core, 24-thread Intel Core i7-13700KF is a powerful processor. Although it is a little pricier than some of the other options on our list, it makes up for it by being incredibly capable. With a base clock speed of 2.5 GHz (E-core), this CPU can boost all the way up to 5.4 GHz (P-core) when called upon.

Besides that, this i7 is also fully unlocked, so you have the option to overclock your CPU for increased performance. With a TDP rating of 125 watts, the i7-137000KF isn’t the most energy-efficient processor on the market, but if you are building for performance, this shouldn’t be a dealbreaker for you. Plus, it is more power efficient than its AMD counterpart.

Besides gaming, the Intel Core i7-13700KF is particularly good for content creation tasks. If you enjoy making and editing videos, you won’t be left waiting while your files render; this processor wraps it up quickly. In 3D benchmarks like the Cinebench R23 test, this processor scored 2126 points (single-core), and 31062 points (multi-core), beating the likes of the older Ryzen 9 5950X and even the newer Ryzen 9 7900X in both tests.

Even if this CPU did have integrated graphics, we would recommend pairing a high-performance graphics card with it just to get the most out of your PC. For that, the best option is, without a doubt, the Nvidia RTX 4080.

Based on the AD103 graphics processor, the RTX 4080 is loaded with 16 GB of high-speed GDDR6X VRAM, making it particularly good for loading massive, texture-filled games and applications. With DirectX 12 Ultimate support and other cutting-edge technology packed inside, this GPU is regarded as one of the best cards you can get for gaming. The only thing that can really top the RTX 4080 in the Nvidia lineup, is the more powerful RTX 4090. But as we mentioned, the performance per dollar is much better on the RTX 4080.

Where the RTX 4080 really shines is with 1440p and 4k gaming. We benchmarked this card with some of the most popular and demanding games to get a feel for how it performs relative to the competition. Additionally, we ran these games on the highest settings at full 4k resolution and were rather impressed with the outcome.

Popular games like Shadow of the Tomb Rider performed well on benchmarks, showing average frame rates of 270 at 1440p resolution and 151 at 4k on high settings. Another favorite, God of War, also performed very well, showing frame rates averaging around 180 FPS at 1440p and 125 FPS at 4k. Besides that, another fan favorite, Watch Dogs: Legion, performed similarly with 130 FPS at 1440p and 105 FPS at 4K on high settings.

Even super-intensive games like Cyberpunk 2077 were able to run at high quality without stuttering or dropping frames. Running in 1440p resolution, we saw an average of 110 FPS. Furthermore, at 4k resolution, we still saw a decent average of 65 FPS on high settings, making the RTX 4080 second only to the RTX 4090–even the 3090 Ti gets left in the dust. But keep in mind you still have DLSS 3 option at hand to boost your framerate.

For the gamer slash streamer and content creator who’s looking to get the best performance for the money, this combo is a no brainer. Although not as good as the Core i9 and 4090 combination on our list, you can still expect amazing performance, even beating the 3090 Ti from the last generation. Overall, we strongly recommend the Intel Core i7-13700KF and Nvidia RTX 4080–you’re getting an extremely high-performing and future-proofed combo without spending a ridiculous amount of money.

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3. AMD Ryzen 5 7600X + Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti

”Best for 1440p Gaming and Creatives”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Zen 4 | Socket: AM5 | Cores: 6 | Threads: 12 | Base Frequency: 4.7 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 5.3 GHz | TDP: 105 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 6.144 | Base Clock: 1.575 MHz | Boost Clock: 1.770 MHz | Memory: 8 GB GDDR6X | Memory Clock Speed: 19.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 256-bit


AMD Ryzen 5 7600X + Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti

REASONS TO BUY

  • Offers fantastic value for the money
  • Excellent performance across the board
  • Viable for all levels of gaming up to 1440p (and some light 4k gaming)
  • Puts some serious rendering and editing on the table as well
  • Highly power efficient
  • Great CPU for overclocking
  • Ray tracing and DLSS

REASONS TO AVOID

  • Lacks at 4k gaming
  • Older generation GPU
  • Limited rendering performance (both CPU and GPU)

Our Rating:   9.7/10

Ever since the release of the first Ryzen processors in 2017, AMD has been giving Intel a run for its money. Strong competition between Intel and AMD has led to the biggest advances in processor technology, particularly in the last few years. While Intel is still ahead, especially with the newest 13th generation of processors, AMD still makes excellent processors in the mid-tier category, and you definitely should consider AMD if you’re shopping in the 300-dollar price range.

Additionally, you may be wondering: what graphics cards go well with a Ryzen processor? With the Ryzen 5 series processors offering excellent price-to-performance ratios, finding the perfect GPU to complement their performance is very important. We’ve found the perfect combination that offers some of the best value: the AMD Ryzen 5 7600X + Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti.

After thoroughly reviewing this combo, we can honestly say it makes the best-price-to-performance duo on this list for a few reasons. The Ryzen 5 7600X is a surprisingly powerful CPU considering the price. Sitting right between the Ryzen 3 and the Ryzen 7 on AMD’s processor hierarchy, the Ryzen 5 brings you the best mix of value and performance for both gaming and CPU-intensive applications.

The cores and threads stay the same in comparison to the previous 5000 series; however, the clock rate got improved significantly. The Ryzen 5 7600X runs at a base clock speed of 4.7 GHz, an improvement of 1 GHz over the previous generation, and a fantastic boost clock of 5.3 GHz. Thanks to that, and the new Zen 4 architecture, the CPU has vastly superior single-core and multi-core performance over the previous generation. Furthermore, the Ryzen 5 7600X uses just 105 watts of peak power, proving it is also very energy-efficient.

Speaking of improvements over the previous generation, the Ryzen 5 7600X now comes with integrated graphics. The CPU will is capable of some light 1080p gaming; however, we found the perfect match to complement the AMD processor: the Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti. This GPU is already over a year old, but due to the graphics chip shortages taking place over the past year, it has been hard to find until recently.

Now that prices are back to normal, the RTX 3070 Ti is looking like a more attractive choice for gamers who are looking for a powerful 1440p card. Compared to some of the other GPUs on our list, the 3070 Ti delivers better performance for the price. Based on the GA104 graphics processor, the 3070 Ti comes equipped with 8GB of the fastest GDDR6X VRAM, making it a formidable opponent to higher-end cards that use the same VRAM.

With full support for DirectX 12, Ray Tracing, and DLSS, the RTX 3070 Ti has everything you need to jump into the latest games. Although not the best graphics card for 4K gaming, the RTX 3070 Ti packs plenty of power to handle all of the latest games on 1080p and 1440p resolution. We compiled benchmarks for the most popular games running at 1440p resolution to see how this GPU performs in real-life scenarios.

Older games like Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege easily approached 200 FPS on the highest settings. Additionally, newer games like Resident Evil 3 approached 300 FPS. Furthermore, some of the most demanding games, such as Cyberpunk 2077 and Watchdogs: Legion, ran very well on high settings. In testing, we saw averages of around 60 FPS and 70 FPS, respectively. For a graphics card in this price range, the RTX 3070 Ti is definitely worth its salt.

Overall, the combination of AMD Ryzen 5 7600X and RTX 3070 Ti makes for a great duo for both competitive gaming as well as the newest releases at 1440p. There are more powerful components on the market; however, if you are looking for the best bang for your buck in general, you’ll be hard-pressed to find anything better.

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4. AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5975WX + AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX

”Best for Workstations”


CPU Specification

Architecture: AMD Zen 3 | Socket: sWRX8 | Cores: 32 | Threads: 64 | Base Frequency: 3.6 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 4.5 GHz | TDP: 280 W

GPU Specification

Cores: 6.144 | Base Clock: 1.900 MHz | Boost Clock: 2.500 MHz | Memory: 24 GB GDDR6 | Memory Clock Speed: 20.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 384-bit


AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5975WX + AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX

REASONS TO BUY

  • The best CPU and GPU combo for workstations
  • Easily handles 4K gaming
  • Excellent for complex rendering projects
  • Unparalleled processing power with the Threadripper 5975WX
  • The GPU offers excellent performance per dollar
  • AMD chips works perfectly together

REASONS TO AVOID

  • Super pricey (especially the CPU)
  • Less support than for Nvidia’s CUDA
  • Super power-hungry processor
  • Expensive motherboard needed

Our Rating:   9.6/10

The next CPU and GPU combo is for professionals, content creators, and video producers who can’t compromise on performance. When you use your PC to earn your living, whether it be producing content, video editing, or doing computer-assisted design, spending a ton of cash on the perfect parts ensures that you will have the fastest, most future-proof, and most profitable setup.

For those who use their PC for more than just gaming and want a setup that can outperform all others without breaking a sweat, we have the perfect combination for you: the AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5975WX + the latest AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX.

There are definitely some drawbacks to this combination, mainly the price. When considering the highest-tier performance parts, you’ll quickly realize this pairing won’t come cheap. But the truth is, you’re paying for great performance, and that’s just what you get with this CPU and GPU combo.

With the Threadripper PRO 5975WX, you’re paying for massive processing power, and this CPU does not disappoint in that department. This processor is the king of multitasking, with 32 cores and 64 threads with a boost clock of 4.5 GHz, which can be pushed to 5 GHz with proper cooling. Additionally, the Threadripper stands out by providing a massive 128MB L3 cache, allowing you to speed through complex rendering tasks with ease.

But be aware that the Threadripper is designed for advanced tasks far beyond gaming. If you are working with large and complex projects, this CPU can mean the difference between waiting hours for a video project to render versus minutes. If you find yourself up against deadlines when creating content, a processor of this caliber effectively pays for itself.

We benchmarked the Threadripper PRO 5975WX to get an idea of its actual performance abilities. On the CPUMark benchmark, one of the most popular benchmarks for testing across multiple cores, the processor scored 76.300 points, only bested by the Threadripper PRO 5995WX with 99.500 points. However, the 5995WX comes equipped with double the cores and isn’t really a fair comparison.

Since a processor of this magnitude obviously doesn’t include integrated graphics, we had to find a sufficient graphics card to complement it. That’s where the AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX comes in.

We ultimately decided on the RX 7900 XTX for a number of reasons. The benefits of using an AMD graphics card with an AMD processor are many, but the most impactful benefit is the ability to use AMD Smart Access Memory.

With this technology, your CPU will be able to access 100% of your GPU’s graphics memory by expanding the data channel and maximizing bandwidth between the graphics card and processor. In short, it’s beneficial to use AMD processors and graphics cards together to maximize your performance gains.

Furthermore, we were pleased with the performance offered by the RX 7900 XTX in most categories. It excels in applications that require a lot of graphics memory, thanks to the 24 GB of GDDR6 and 384-bit memory bus width, which is on par with Nvidia’s flagship, the RTX 4090. High-bandwidth memory-intensive applications run very well, but so do more basic uses like gaming.

Even if you don’t plan to use your workstation for gaming, there is no arguing that this combination makes for a mean gaming machine. The RX 7900 XTX is an outstanding gaming GPU, and despite what some people say, goes neck-and-neck with the RTX 4090.

As a matter of fact, the RX 7900 XTX was extremely similar to the RTX 4090 when we benchmarked it with some of the most popular games. The RTX 4090 still offers better performance across the board, especially with Ray Tracing, but given the lower price, we’re happy to see the RX 7900 XTX do so well.

4K gaming is impressive with this card. At 4K with max settings, Forza Horizon 5 showed an average of 200 FPS, Red Dead Redemption got 90 FPS, and on God of War, we recorded an average of 101 FPS. Those are some impressive numbers for an outsider.

Overall, the combination of the AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5975WX and the AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX makes an ideal workstation setup for a power user. If you have money to burn, or if you’re a professional, this combination is one of the most powerful options on the market, and complex video editing projects or 3D rendering will be a breeze with this much power, not to mention 4K gaming.

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5. Intel Core i5-13600KF + Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060

”Excellent CPU & GPU Combo for 1080p Gaming”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Raptor Lake | Socket: LGA 1700 | Cores: 14 | Threads: 20 | Base Frequency: 3.5 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 5.1 GHz | TDP: 125 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 3.584 | Base Clock: 1.320 MHz | Boost Clock: 1.780 MHz | Memory: 8 GB GDDR6 | Memory Clock Speed: 15.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 128-bit


Intel Core i5-13600KF + Nvidia RTX 3060

REASONS TO BUY

  • The perfect combo for 1080p gaming
  • Puts lighter video editing and rendering on the table
  • One of the best CPUs and GPUs for the money
  • Good setup for overclocking
  • Very affordable
  • Doesn’t require liquid cooling
  • Fairly efficient overall

REASONS TO AVOID

  • Limited 1440p gaming
  • 4k gaming is out of reach

Our Rating:   9.5/10

Since the chip shortages and cryptocurrency mining boom of the past year or so, there has been little in the way of affordable mid-tier GPUs until recently. With few options for gamers wanting to upgrade their setups with more powerful graphics cards, it has been refreshing to see prices finally back to normal after so long.

If you are looking to take advantage of the recent price drops in the graphics card market, there are plenty of options for you. Additionally, if you’re building a new 1080p gaming PC or upgrading your current build, you’ll want to make sure that you have a good processor to go along with it. We found a good combo that checks all the boxes for those looking to get into competitive gaming without breaking the bank: the Intel Core i5-13600KF and Nvidia Geforce RTX 3060.

We checked out this combo and put it to the test to find out what you can do with it. It definitely doesn’t stand up to the more premium offerings from Intel and Nvidia, such as the Core i7 and the new 4000 video cards, but for this price point, it is much more than we expected.

You’ll find that the Intel Core i5-13600KF is an excellent budget CPU with 14 cores and hyperthreading. In addition to that, you get a base clock of 3.5 GHz that can be further boosted to Intel’s guaranteed 5.1 GHz. If you have a proper cooling system in place, you’ll be able to push the CPU to 5.5 GHz easily–That also means a higher TDP at 125 watts (which will climp to 180-190 W) which is pretty high for a mid-tier processor.

Another thing to note is the “F” designation in this processor’s name. Basically, all that means is that the integrated graphics feature has been disabled, meaning you will need to supply your own graphics card. Obviously, if you have gaming on your mind, you were planning to do that anyway. The best graphics card we could find to pair with this CPU was the RTX 3060 from Nvidia. You could spring for the ‘Ti’ model; however, the RTX 3060 is plenty good for 1080p gaming.

We reviewed the RTX 3060 to see just what it is capable of, and overall the results are good for the price. Although it may not be the best graphics card money can buy, but we were still pretty happy with the level of performance offered by the RTX 3060.

Ignoring the fact that the RTX 3060 is over two years old already, the truth is that most gamers were not able to get their hands on this GPU until recently due to insane prices. With GPUs selling for well over MSRP for a while, the RTX 3060 is back down to a reasonable level once again. Furthermore, the price-to-performance ratio is actually really good.

Packing 8 GB of the older GDDR6 VRAM, thanks to its 192-bit memory bus width, the RTX 3060 still has a ton of power under the hood. With decent hardware raytracing abilities, the gameplay is snappy and responsive on this card. Additionally, this GPU makes a great choice if you are into competitive gaming.

We found that the RTX 3060 really shines when it comes to playing games at 1080p resolution. Furthermore, you’ll be able to turn the settings up to Ultra and still get decent frame rates. We tested this card on a wide range of the most popular games to get an idea of how it performs.

Older, less demanding games like Valorant and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Seige are no problem at all for the RTX 3060, with average frame rates close to 300. Games like Death Stranding and Shadow of the Tomb Raider were also very impressive, running at over 120 FPS even on the highest settings at 1080p.

In contrast, more demanding titles such as Assassin’s Creed Valhalla and Watch Dogs: Legion showed averages of over 60 FPS, which is not bad. Even highly intensive games like Microsoft Flight Simulator were still playable on the highest settings, although at a rather lackluster 40 FPS average.

Overall, the Intel Core i5-13600KF pairs very nicely with the Nvidia Geforce RTX 3060. This combo makes a great team if you are into competitive gaming and want something with a lot of power for your money. Being a mid-tier CPU and GPU combination, there are definitely better components on the market, but if you don’t want to overpay for a 1080p setup, the Intel Core i5-13600KF and RTX 3060 is your best bet.

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6. AMD Ryzen 5 5500 + Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti

”Best for Light 1080p Gaming”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Zen 3 | Socket: AM4 | Cores: 6 | Threads: 12 | Base Frequency: 3.6 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 4.2 GHz | TDP: 65 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 1.536 | Base Clock: 1.500 MHz | Boost Clock: 1.770 MHz | Memory: 6 GB GDDR6 | Memory Clock Speed: 12.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 192-bit


AMD Ryze 5 5500G + Nvidia GTX 1660 Ti

REASONS TO BUY

  • Extremely affordable
  • Great 1080p gaming performance
  • Puts some light video editing on the table
  • Extremely power-efficient
  • Highly compact GPU
  • Very low requirements for cooling
  • The CPU overclocks well

REASONS TO AVOID

  • 1440p and 4k gaming is out of the picture
  • You’ll be forced to dial the settings back in most games
  • Limited processing power

Our Rating:   9.2/10

If you don’t have quite the budget to pick up one of the more expensive combos, there are still plenty of affordable options out there if you are trying to build a quality PC for gaming and other demanding applications. You shouldn’t have to spend a ton of money to put together a PC, especially if you don’t care about having a flashy design or breaking any benchmark records.

Additionally, if all you want to do is find the cheapest option, you might be tempted to just pick up an inexpensive prebuilt PC. Although not a terrible idea, you can almost always get better performance and also have more fun by building your own PC. We picked out the best combo for those looking to build a rig for 1080p gaming and light editing: the AMD Ryzen 5 5500 and Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660 Ti.

We reviewed this combo to find out what it is really capable of, and there are a few things we found interesting: although not as good as some of the other options on this list, this combo can actually be really competitive for most games. Additionally, the Ryzen 5 paired with the GTX 1660 Ti makes for a pretty satisfactory video editing workstation.

Checking out the AMD Ryzen 5 5500 processor, we didn’t expect to see some impressive performance, especially considering the fact that it is a standard Hexa-core processor with a max clock speed of 4.2 GHz. For the most part, we were pleased with the performance, and it’s also excellent for overclocking, but the Core i5 is still a superior processor–What’s great is that the 5500 is one of the cheapest, if not the cheapest Hexa-core processor on the market.

Since the Ryzen 5 5500 does not have support for integrated graphics, you’ll need to pair it with a decent GPU if you want to use it. We figured the best graphics card for the job (1080p content and games) would be the Geforce GTX 1660 Ti from Nvidia.

Although not a premium GPU, the GTX 1660 Ti still has some impressive specs for this price point. With 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM, the GTX 1660 Ti packs a lot of power into a small graphics card. You’ll find that 1080p gaming is where this card really shines. We went in with pretty low expectations, especially considering the low price point of this GPU. But overall, we were pleasantly surprised.

On high settings, we were able to run games like Apex Legends, Forza Horizon 4, and Fortnite while averaging a satisfactory 60 to 70 frames per second. Additionally, more demanding games like Metro Exodus, Just Cause 4, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider still showed good performance, with average frame rates between 35 and 45. Keep in mind that this card is best for older, less taxing games, and if you want to play newer releases, you will have to dial the settings back a lot in most cases.

You won’t get earth-shattering performance with the GTX 1660 Ti, and playing games on higher resolutions like 1440p or 4K is out of the question, but it is still a very satisfactory card for 1080p gaming. Furthermore, If you are looking to get into video editing or upgrade your workstation setup from integrated graphics, the GTX 1660 Ti is a great option. With sufficient VRAM and decent boost clock speeds, you can easily edit video in full 1080p quickly and easily if you have enough RAM.

Overall, the AMD Ryzen 5 5500 and Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660 Ti make a really good combo if you know what you’re looking for. There are definitely more powerful options out there if you are willing to spend a bit more, but if you already have an AM4 socket motherboard, you’ll easily be able to drop the Ryzen 5 5500 in and have no problems. Paired with the GTX 1660 Ti, you’ll be able to get up to speed with 1080p gaming and video editing in no time.

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7. Intel Core i3 10100F + Nvidia GeForce GT 1030

”Best Starter Combo”


CPU Specification

Architecture: Comet Lake | Socket: LGA 1200 | Cores: 4 | Threads: 8 | Base Frequency: 3.6 GHz | Max Boost Frequency: 4.3 GHz | TDP: 65 W

GPU Specification

CUDA Cores: 384 | Base Clock: 1228 MHz | Boost Clock: 1468 MHz | Memory: 2 GB GDDR5 | Memory Clock Speed: 6.000 MHz | Memory Interface: 64-bit


Intel Core i3-10100F + Nvidia GeForce GT 1030

REASONS TO BUY

  • Decent gaming performance for older games
  • Great starter combo for kids or occasional gamers
  • Can run a large number of games at 1080p
  • Extremely power-efficient
  • Highly affordable
  • Costs less than $200 (both components)
  • Low-profile GPU

REASONS TO AVOID

  • AAA titles and anything above 1080p is out of the picture
  • Video editing will be a huge struggle
  • The GPU will be a big bottleneck

Our Rating:   8.7/10

With so much chatter about expensive graphics cards and processors, it can be difficult to find any affordable options if you want to get into PC gaming. If you just can’t fathom the numbers on some of the high-end GPUs and CPUs out there, it can seem like there are no options for someone just getting started on the PC gaming journey.

Furthermore, if you mainly use your PC for typing documents, office work, studying, doing homework, and occasional gaming, it can seem hard to justify spending a ton of money on parts. Sure, you can go with a cheap prebuilt, but you’ll be sacrificing in terms of quality and customization. For those on a tight budget, there is still hope, and we have put together the best combo for light gaming and office work: the Intel Core i3-10100F + Geforce GT 1030.

After reviewing this combo thoroughly, a few things are glaringly obvious to us. The first thing is: that you’re not going to set any records or break any benchmarks. This combo is far from high-end, but if you’re trying to pinch pennies, it gets the job done.

Looking at the Core i3-10100F processor from Intel, we can honestly say it’s a decent CPU for the money. Being the cheapest processor on our list, we didn’t expect amazing performance, but the quad-core 10th generation i3 really surprised us. Seeing hyperthreading on a CPU at this price point is quite rare.

In contrast, every single Intel Core i3 processor up until this point has been a dual-core design. The 10th generation model is a real game-changer with 4 cores and 8 threads, and as long as it is paired with a decent graphics card, you’ll be able to use it for much more than just office work.

We figured the perfect graphics card to pair with the Core i3-10100F would be one of Nvidia’s older GPUs: the Geforce GT 1030. You’ll need to keep your expectations in check with a graphics card like this since it is not designed for heavy gaming. In other words, it is an office GPU first and a gaming GPU second.

That’s not to say that it can’t play games. In fact, we tested it with some of the most popular titles and found that it is actually quite capable. Games like Fortnite ran at around 55 FPS at 1080p on medium settings. Additionally, older games like Rocket League and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege ran similarly.

In contrast, more demanding titles like Far Cry 5 and Dirt 4 had to be turned down to the lowest settings to even be playable. If you are happy with 20 to 25 frames per second, you’ll be able to play at 1080p on low settings. Besides that, any demanding games like Cyberpunk or GTA V are out of the question.

One thing you’ll want to be careful of if you are considering this card is that Nvidia released two versions; one which has DDR5 VRAM and one which has an abysmally slow DDR4 VRAM. We tested the DDR5 version, and after hearing horror stories about the slow performance of the DDR4 version, we knew that it would be something to watch out for.

If you’re looking for a low-budget graphics card that doesn’t use a lot of power and fits in a small case, the Geforce GT 1030 is a great option. You might not be playing the latest games on the highest settings, but it is a decent choice if you are just getting started with PC gaming or want to occasionally fire up your old favorites.

Overall, the Intel Core i3-10100F and GT 1030 make a good team. Since the 10th generation Core i3 uses the LGA-1200 socket type, you can always upgrade to a more powerful CPU when you want to increase your performance. Furthermore, the GT 1030 is such a good deal, it is a great way to introduce your kids to building their first PC or for those on a tight budget wanting to get started playing PC games.

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In Conclusion

There are so many possibilities out there when combining GPUs and CPUs that finding the perfect combination can seem impossible. Hopefully, this list of the 7 best CPU and GPU combos in 2022 has cleared some things up for you and pointed you in the right direction.

Whether you are on a budget or not, getting the best performance for your money is ultimately what everything comes down to. The right combination of CPU and GPU can turn a good system into a great system. In contrast, buying the wrong parts can seriously cap your performance and make you regret your decision.

Either way, if you have any questions about picking the right parts for the job, feel free to drop a comment below, and we’ll be more than happy to help you out. We love hearing from you!

About Richard Gamin 183 Articles
My name's Richard and over the years, I have personally built many PCs for myself and my friends. I love gaming, programming, graphics designing and basically anything that has to do with computers and technology. If you ever need a hand with anything, feel free to contact me and I will be more than happy to help you out.

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