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6 Best CPU for RTX 3070 (2023)

Despite the release of the RTX 40 series cards, the RTX 30 series is still viable in 2023, and the RTX 3070 is still regarded as being top tier when it comes to gaming at 1440P. I’d still recommend building around the RTX 3070 simply because the prices are far more affordable compared to what they used to be during the RTX 30 series launch.

I understand that picking the right CPU for a particular graphics card can be difficult, especially when there are thousands of processors to pick from. I am here to narrow down the number of CPUs by determining how they work with the RTX 3070 so you don’t have to.

In this buyer’s guide, we will be focusing on both Intel and Ryzen CPUs as they both have amazing options. Intel CPUs are known for their strong single-core performance, and Ryzen is known for its amazing multicore performance.

In a hurry? No worries, I’ve compiled the list in a table down below!

[amazon table=”1257″]

Best Intel CPUs for RTX 3070

Intel processors are renowned for their remarkable single-core performance and IPC (instructions per cycle) throughput, making them suitable for gaming. The elevated IPC throughput permits Intel CPUs to process more instructions per cycle than their rivals, resulting in fewer cycles needed to complete a particular job.

This equates to better performance in gaming circumstances where a single core usually carries out the game’s logic. Moreover, Intel CPUs usually have higher clock speeds than their competitors, enabling them to further intensify their single-core performance. The combination of these aspects renders Intel CPUs an ideal selection for gaming with the RTX 3070.

We will be concentrating on Intel’s 13th iteration processors, such as the I9 13900K, I7 13700K, and I5 13600K, to combine with the RTX 3070. These CPUs boast an impressive upsurge in single-core execution when compared to prior generations(12th, 11th, 10th), rendering them optimal for gaming and other strenuous activities. They tout enhanced clock rates, more cores, and greater cache sizes, allowing for an impressive enhancement in performance.

Intel I9 13900K | Best LGA 1700 CPU for RTX 3070

I9 13900K for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 3.0 GHz(base) 5.8 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 24(performance + efficiency cores) 32(performance + efficiency threads)
  • Microarchitecture: Golden Cove
  • Socket: LGA1700
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 125W(base) 253W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Best gaming performance on the market
  • Best multicore performance on the market
  • Ideal for multithreaded applications
  • Will not bottleneck the RTX 3070

Reasons To Avoid

  • Can get quite hot

Review

If you’re trying to leave no performance on the table, and want to have a future-proof system, then the I9 13900K will make that a reality. The RTX 3070 will suffer minimal bottlenecks even at the lowest of resolutions; you will absolutely get the most out of the RTX 3070 with the I9 13900K.

It is a bit overkill in my opinion, and you could definitely pair the I9 13900K with a better graphics card, but if you already have the RTX 3070 and are looking for a CPU upgrade, I’m only pointing you in the direction of the most powerful CPU. The 13900K will generate higher frame rates compared to the 13700K and any Ryzen competitor due to the high single-core performance.

If you’re not going to be gaming, and you need a CPU for streaming, 3D Modelling, or video editing, then the I9 13900K makes even more sense due to the multi-core nature of the processor. It has 24 cores and a boost clock speed of 5.8 GHz, any multithreaded task you throw at it won’t be an issue.

For gaming, just be aware that the majority of the cores will go unused which could be a huge waste of money since you’re not getting the full performance of your CPU. That’s why I’d recommend something a little more conservative such as the I7 13700K, it has fewer cores, but the single-core performance is quite identical.

If you utilize the I9 13900K with a well-capable motherboard, you can reap the benefits of “instant 6GHz” which is a feature exclusive to GIGABYTE Z790 motherboards. This will push the I9 13900K to run at 6GHz which is really impressive, and you will see the additional performance in many gaming scenarios.

The main competitor to the I9 13900K is the Ryzen 9 7950X, and these are both top of the line processors that are built to handle CPU-heavy tasks such as video editing, 3D modeling, and Software encoding.

My qualms regarding the I9 13900K revolve around its heat management and power consumption. It is apparent that, when the CPU is used at its maximum capacity (in my case, with software compilation and CAD programs), the I9 13900K will easily reach temperatures of 90C, and the power usage may be a cause for apprehension. However, this is the cost of having one of the top processors on the market.

Intel I7 13700K | Best LGA 1700 Gaming CPU for RTX 3070

13700K for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 3.4 GHz(base) 5.4 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 16(performance + efficiency cores) 24(performance + efficiency threads)
  • Microarchitecture: Golden Cove
  • Socket: LGA1700
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 125W(base) 253W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Amazing gaming performance without completely breaking the bank
  • Great multicore performance
  • Supports DDR4 & DDR5
  • Supports previous gen motherboards

Reasons To Avoid

  • Can get quite hot

Review

The Intel I7 13700K is a respectable pick for a gaming computer, particularly when paired with the RTX 3070. With the processor’s value-oriented price and impressive single-core performance, it guarantees an enjoyable gaming experience without incurring excessive expenses.

It is beyond doubt that the I7 13700K will prevail over the I9 12900K in the majority of gaming scenarios. In terms of both theory and practice, the I7 13700K proves to be excellent in all regards apart from the core count. The clock speeds are great, and the IPC is higher, consequently producing an appreciable gaming performance.

The I7 13700K exhibits commendable multicore performance, making it a viable option for workstations with heavy multithreaded loads. However, it is ultimately surpassed by the I9 13900K in this regard. Consequently, it is not recommended for those seeking to maximize their computing power.

In terms of overclocking, the I7 13700K has the potential to compete with the single core performance of the I9 13900K, this depends on the quality of the cooling solution, the proficiency of the motherboard, and the quality of the overclocking process. Moreover, with an RTX 3070, the 13700K could be competitive with the 13900K in terms of FPS whilst gaming.

When pitted against one another, the I7 13700K emerges as the superior processor, boasting twice the number of cores and identical boost clock speeds. This superiority is especially pronounced in gaming scenarios, where Intel’s processor is able to decisively outdo the 7700X.

The Intel i7-13700K is characterized by its low thermal output, a trait attributed to its fewer cores and lower clock speed. With fewer cores, power consumption is minimized, and a slower clock speed serves to further reduce energy demands.

This curbs the processor’s heat generation, ultimately improving gaming performance by allowing the processor to operate at higher frequencies while still staying within a viable temperature range. Moreover, the decreased heat output is beneficial to the CPU cooler, facilitating quieter functionality.

Intel I5 13600K | Best LGA 1700 CPU For Budget Gaming

13600K for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 3.5 GHz(base) 5.1 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 14(performance + efficiency cores) 20(performance + efficiency threads)
  • Microarchitecture: Golden Cove
  • Socket: LGA1700
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 125W(base) 181W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Best gaming performance on a budget
  • Supports DDR4 motherboards
  • Integrated graphics is available
  • Supports PCIE 5.0

Reasons To Avoid

  • Poor single-core performance compared to I9 and I7.
  • No stock cooler

Review

As a gamer interested in constructing a gaming PC without the need to perform taxing CPU operations, one may be drawn to an I5 processor due to its balance of performance and affordability.

The Intel Core i5-13600K is an ideal selection for a well-rounded gaming build, paired with the RTX 3070. Boasting a base clock of 3.5 GHz and a boost clock of 5.1 GHz, this processor is more than capable of leveraging the RTX 3070’s impressive graphical capabilities.

Moreover, with 14 cores and 20 threads, multitasking and streaming become an effortless, efficient endeavor. This pairing offers an optimal balance of performance and affordability for any gaming rig without sacrificing quality.

With thorough benchmarking, the Intel Core i5-13600K reveals itself to be a superior gaming processor compared to the i9-12900K, boasting a noteworthy 5 FPS advantage. Given the more accessible price tag of the i5-13600K, it is safe to proclaim this processor as a highly cost-effective choice for gaming.

The Intel Core i5-13600K and AMD Ryzen 5 7600X are both formidable contenders in the gaming space. Testing has shown that the two processors often exhibit a similar level of performance, with the i5 sometimes outperforming the Ryzen 5 and vice-versa.

The biggest downside the I5 13600K has is its multicore performance, and that’s only because the I5 13600K isn’t meant to be a multicore beast like the I9 13900K. If you are building a strict gaming machine, then the multicore aspect is pretty much eliminated.

A second downside is the fact it doesn’t come with a stock cooler, this would be greatly appreciated since the I5 line of processors generally targets the budget market. So saving money on a CPU cooler generally means the consumer can focus on acquiring better parts.

Best Ryzen CPUs for RTX 3070

The Ryzen processor is an excellent pairing for the RTX 3070 for various reasons. Chief among them is its commended price-to-performance ratio, allowing users to reap high performance at a comparatively lower cost than Intel’s models.

What’s more, the Ryzen processor has remarkable single-core performance for gaming, optimizing games that rely heavily on single-core capability. Plus, its top-tier multicore performance provides exceptional support for multithreaded tasks, leveraging the processor’s full capabilities. All of these reasons make the Ryzen processor an optimal choice for pairing with the RTX 3070.

Ryzen 9 7900X | Best Top Tier Ryzen CPU for RTX 3070

RYZEN 9 7900X for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 4.7 GHz(base) 5.6 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 12, 24
  • Microarchitecture: Raphael
  • Socket: AM5
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 170W(base) 230W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Competitive gaming performance
  • High core count makes it ideal for multithreaded tasks (video editing, streaming, 3D Modelling, Music production)

Reasons To Avoid

  • Can get quite hot, requires at least a 280MM AIO
  • Not good for just gaming

Review

With its new Zen 4 architecture, AMD has made great strides in terms of Instructions Per Cycle (IPC) without increasing power draw. Additionally, the platform offers support for DDR5 RAM and PCIe 5.0, although users will need to switch from the AM4 platform to AM5, requiring a new motherboard and RAM if moving from a previous generation Ryzen CPU.

The Ryzen 9 7900X and Intel Core i9-13900K are both remarkable gaming CPUs, exchanging blows in gaming scenarios. Clock speed is not an ideal metric for determining which of these CPUs is superior for gaming; IPC (instructions per clock) is a more reliable predictor.

The 7900X has a higher IPC than the 13900K and a lower TDP, making it a more efficient option. However, the 13900K has more cores and threads, which could give it an edge in certain games. In conclusion, both CPUs offer stellar gaming performance and which one is right for you depends on your needs.

The Ryzen 7900X offers gaming performance that is close to the top tier, so it won’t be a bottleneck on the RTX 3070 even at low resolutions. With 12 cores, 24 threads, and a base clock speed of 4.7Ghz, it can easily manage any modern AAA game. Moreover, the boost clock speed of 5.6Ghz enables the processor to manage more demanding tasks such as streaming or video editing.

Even when functioning at full capacity, the CPU only drew up to 87W of power. The stock cooler kept temperatures consistent and low, peaking at 79C during stress testing. This is an impressive feat for a 12-core processor. AMD’s 65W processors are able to come shipped with a cooler due to their low wattage output, which pales in comparison to their X series’ 200W draws.

For just gaming, I would not recommend the Ryzen 9 7900X for the simple fact that you’re leaving a lot of the multicore performance on the table. While it can perform well at gaming, there are more reasonable processors such as the I5 13700K, the Ryzen 9 7900X is good for video editing, streaming, 3D modeling, and multitasking.

Ryzen 7 7700X | Best Mid Tier Ryzen CPU for RTX 3070

7700X for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 4.5 GHz(base) 5.4 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 8(cores) 16(threads)
  • Microarchitecture: Raphael
  • Socket: AM5
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 105W(base) 142W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Reasonable price point for gamers
  • Comes with integrated graphics
  • Impressive clock speeds

Reasons To Avoid

  • No stock cooler

Review

The Ryzen 7 7700X is an exemplary choice for gaming PCs, given its accessible cost and formidable core clock speed. Boasting a base clock speed of 4.5 GHz and a boost clock speed of 5.4 GHz, the 7700X can fuel the RTX 3070 with ample power.

Moreover, its 8 cores and 16 threads make it well-suited for more intensive tasks such as streaming and video editing. All in all, the Ryzen 7 7700X is a brilliant option for gaming PCs, with remarkable performance at an affordable price.

As a lover of technology, I find that the Ryzen 7 7700X and the I7 13700K are both top-of-the-line processors appreciated by gamers alike. The I7 13700K is usually regarded as the optimum choice for gaming due to its higher amount of cores and threads.

Nonetheless, the 7700X is a great value for money, being approximately $50 cheaper than the 13700K(MSRP Wise). Even though the 13700K provides a slight edge in gaming, the cost-effectiveness of the 7700X makes it the preferable choice for gamers with a tighter budget.

The Ryzen 7 7700X is a formidable processor, now equipped with Integrated Graphics. This affords users of this processor the ability to use integrated graphics as a backup in the event of a graphics card failure. This feature is especially beneficial for those constructing a system with the Ryzen 7 7700X and an RTX 3070 graphics card, as it offers an additional layer of contingency.

The Ryzen 7 7700X is a powerful processor, adept at handling your most arduous tasks with potency. Unfortunately, it does not come with a CPU cooler, necessitating an additional purchase. This additional expense may not be expected by some users; however, there are many quality CPU coolers on the market that are compatible with the 7700X.

Ryzen 5 7600X | Best Budget CPU for RTX 3070

7600X for RTX 3070

Specifications

  • Core Clock Speed: 4.7 GHz(base) 5.3 GHz(boost)
  • Core Count: 6(cores) 12(threads)
  • Microarchitecture: Raphael
  • Socket: AM5
  • Max Memory Support 128GB
  • Integrated Graphics: Yes
  • TDP: 105W(base) 116W(turbo)

Reasons To Buy

  • Most budget-friendly Zen 4 Processor
  • Great price-to-performance ratio in terms of gaming
  • Supports DDR5

Reasons To Avoid

  • Poor multicore performance

Review

The Ryzen 5 7600X is a remarkable processor that won’t break the bank, ideal for first time builders or gamers. Boasting 6 cores and 12 threads, it has the multitasking capabilities to keep up with any task.

Furthermore, its 4.7 GHz base clock speed, along with a 5.3 GHz boost clock speed, make it an ideal match for intensive gaming and more. All in all, this budget-friendly processor has everything you need.

The Ryzen 5 7600X is an ideal selection for gamers seeking an impressive price-to-performance ratio. The single core performance that rivals the Intel i5 13600K, the 7600X operates at a core clock speed of 5.3GHz (boost) to provide a formidable performance advantage while gaming.

The Ryzen 5 7600X is an outstanding option for those seeking to future-proof their system, as it is equipped with the latest memory platform, DDR5, which is still in its infant state. This ensures that the Ryzen 5 7600X remains compatible with the newest memory technologies, making it the ideal choice for tech-savvy gamers.

The Ryzen 5 7600X offers a reasonable balance between gaming and general computing performance. However, its 6 physical cores and 12 threads limit its ability to handle more demanding multi-threaded tasks, such as video editing.

Its single-core performance is satisfactory, yet it cannot rival the multi-core performance of higher-end Ryzen CPUs. In comparison, its competitor, the I5 13600K is far more powerful, boasting 14 cores and 20 threads.

How To Pick The Right CPU For Gaming

When choosing a CPU for gaming, it is essential to consider the essential features that will provide the best gaming experience.

These features include single-core performance, core count and L3 cache. Having an understanding of these three specifications will ensure that you can make an informed decision.

Why Is Single-Core Performance Important For Gaming

When it comes to gaming, single-core performance is essential, as most games are best optimized for a higher performing single-core.

If multi-core performance was more important, we’d expect gamers to invest in CPUs with high core counts such as Ryzen Threadrippers or I9 processors.

However, this is not the case; games can still run smoothly on I5 or even I3 processors, as long as the single-core performance is adequate.

Single-core performance is composed of clock speed and IPC, which usually improves with each CPU generation.

Why Core Count Is Important For Games

The number of cores in a system does not necessarily reflect the Frames Per Second (FPS) output, yet games are programmed to make use of multiple cores for enhanced performance.

Furthermore, many gamers enjoy multitasking by streaming or playing music in the background, and having multiple cores helps to facilitate such activities; in addition to optimizing the operation of the operating system.

Why L3 Cache Is Important For Games

The L3 cache plays an integral role in gaming, as it facilitates rapid data exchange, far surpassing the speed of RAM.

Without sufficient L3 cache, the CPU must retrieve instructions from RAM, slowing down the operation.

The Ryzen 7 5800X3D is a prime example, as its expansive L3 cache allows for superior performance in gaming.

Also Read: Best CPU For RTX 3060 TI

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