If you are a tinkerer or on a very tight budget, the AM3+ socket that was released back in 2011 is still a viable choice in 2020. These CPUs and their motherboards are dirt cheap, so what is the fastest AMD AM3+ CPU?
AMD AM3+ CPUs are surprisingly diverse and there are many good choices here. No matter what you go for, you can’t make a mistake because they are so cheap. Even if you break the CPU, you don’t have to worry. It’s just like a beater car that you’d get to learn how to drive. It does not matter if it hits a pole or gets scratched because it is replaceable.
Another benefit that AM3+ CPUs have over Intel is that they offered more cores at a lower price. This translates even to today. We could say that the AM3+ socket was ahead of its time. So, what is the fastest AMD AM3+ CPU?
The overall best choice is AMD FX-8350. It has 8 cores and 8 threads, 8 MB of cache, and a base frequency of 4.0 GHz that boosts up to 4.2 GHz. This CPU is designed to use fewer cores if the workload is not high for maximum efficiency and better thermals. The CPU can easily be overclocked to 4.5 – 4.6 GHz. Some lucky people claim that they even got to 5.0 GHz stable, which shows how powerful this CPU can be. The record is over 8 GHz.
Even without overclocking, the performance is acceptable. You can expect to see playable framerates in modern AAA titles as well as acceptable rendering times in professional software thanks to its high core count and fast clock speed.
But is there a better choice? What is the fastest AMD AM3+ CPU if the price doesn’t matter? What about video editing? You will find the answers to all those questions below.
Fastest AMD AM3+ CPU
We have already mentioned the FX-8350 as the best overall choice if the price is factored in. But if you want to get the absolute best, then the answer is the FX-9590. Its launch price was $900, but now it can be found for much, much less. It is a beast of a CPU with 8 cores and 8 threads running at 5.0 GHz. The problem with this CPU is that it needs 220W.
What this means for you is that you need an amazing motherboard that can power it, a good power supply, and a good cooler. It was shipped with a liquid cooling system in the original box, but any liquid aftermarket cooler will do fine. This CPU is a better choice for professionals rather than gamers because you can find cheaper Intel CPUs that perform better.
Another great choice for professionals who do a lot of video editing is the FX-6300 Vishera. It is a very cheap CPU tailored specifically for that purpose with its six cores and six threads. It has a 16-way sub-cache feature which is great for moving data quickly.
The FX-8300 is also a viable choice for gaming on a very tight budget. It is a bit slower than the FX-8350, but with some overclocking and tweaking it can be an all right CPU if you cannot get your hands on the FX-8350.
There is also the FX-8370 black edition that is very similar to the FX-8350 but runs at 4.3 GHz instead of 4.2 GHz. As the performance difference between the two is marginal, you should only get this CPU if you find it for the same price or cheaper than the FX-8350.
The AMD AM3+ processors from 2011 can still provide a lot considering their old age. If you can find one of these CPUs from the list for cheap, you are on a roll. CPUs like the FX-8350 and FX-9590 can do well in modern games, especially if you push the FX-8350 to its limits through overclocking. You can expect them to run games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare at an average of 80 FPS when paired with a decent graphics card.
And for the professionals on a tight budget, these CPUs are solid options. Their 8 cores are great for fast rendering, but if you are on a tight budget, there is also the six-core FX-6300 that was designed for video editing. No matter what CPU you choose, you will not be disappointed as long as you pay a reasonable price for it.