Intel Pentium G3258 Anniversary Edition Dual Core ProcessorEarlier this week Nate & I were able to get our hands on the Intel Pentium G3258 20th Anniversary Edition Processor to take for a ride. While he was doing this, he focused most of his time on the X86 performance of the 3.2GHz Dual Core processor. He did touch a little bit on the graphics performance of the Intel HD graphics on the G3258 as well as pairing the processor with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 TI for a run through of Metro Last Light. I wanted to take the $72.99 dual core Intel Pentium G3258 processor for a spin and focus on gaming performance with a solid discrete graphics card and see how it would stack up against the same system with an Intel Core i7-4770K processor which retails for considerably more. Instead of the using the latest and greatest graphics card on the market, I'm going to stick my hand into the stack of cards that are getting a little long in the tooth and may be something that has been upgraded in a primary rig that would be great in a dedicated LAN box or a Steam Box. I pulled out the ASUS Direct CU II GeForce GTX 670 graphics card to use today. It's not the latest and greatest card out there, but it certainly has plenty of performance to build a great rig with still and is very affordable. Since we have already covered the Intel Pentium G3258 in detail here, we aren't going to dwell on it to much today. For a quick refresher though, you can find the specifications for the Intel Pentium G3258 anniversary edition below.
|Intel Pentium G3258 Specifications|
|# of Cores||2|
|# of Threads||2|
|Clock Speed||3.2 GHz|
|# of QPI Links||0|
|Instruction Set Extensions||SSE4.1/4.2|
|Embedded Options Available||No|
|Max TDP||53 W|
|Thermal Solution Specification||PCG 2013C|
|Recommended Customer Price||BOX : $72.00 TRAY: $72.00|
|Max Memory Size (dependent on memory type)||32 GB|
|# of Memory Channels||2|
|Max Memory Bandwidth||21.3 GB/s|
|ECC Memory Supported||Yes|
|Processor Graphics||Intel® HD Graphics|
|Graphics Base Frequency||350 MHz|
|Graphics Max Dynamic Frequency||1.1 GHz|
|Graphics Video Max Memory||1.7 GB|
|Intel Quick Sync Video||Yes|
|Intel Clear Video HD Technology||No|
|# of Displays Supported||3|
Legit Reviews Test SystemBefore we look at the numbers, let’s take a brief look at the test system that was used. All testing was done using a fresh install of Windows 8 Pro 64-bit and benchmarks were completed on the desktop with no other software programs running. It should be noted that we average all of our test runs. There has been some concern of people testing a cold card versus a hot card, but we’ve always done out testing ‘hot’ since the site started back more than a decade ago.
|Legit Reviews Test System|
|CPU||Intel Pentium G3258||Live Pricing|
|Motherboard||GIGABYTE Z97X-UD5H||Live Pricing|
|Memory||Corsair Dominator Platinum 2133MHz||Live Pricing|
|SSD Operating System||Kingston HyperX 120Gb||Live Pricing|
|SATA & USB 3.0 Testing||Corsair Nuetron 240GB||Live Pricing|
|Power Supply||Corsair AX860I 860 Watt||Live Pricing|
|Keyboard||Corsair Vengeance K90||Live Pricing|
|Mouse||Corsair Vengeance M95||Live Pricing|
|Cooling||Corsair H100i AIO Water Cooling||Live Pricing|
|Graphic Card||ASUS GeForce GTX 670 Direct CU II||Live Pricing|
Intel Pentium G3258 OverclockingThe IntelPentium G3258 Anniversary Edition processor has a base clock of 3.2GHz. Nate was able to take his Intel Pentium G3258 to 4.8GHz, and with a little luck I will be able to hit at least that. Though I'm hoping I can bring it past 4.8GHz, with a little luck maybe even 5.0GHz! It seems that luck isn't on my side today, I wasn't able to get past 4.8GHz with the Intel Pentium G3258. Not that I'm disappointed with 4.8GHz, a 1.6GHz overclock on a $65 processor makes me as happy as can be. Rather than just running a couple of tests for stability, I'm going to include the overclocked performance results in all of the gaming benchmarks today!
FutureMark 3DMark3Dmark Fire Strike Benchmark Results - For high performance gaming PCs Use Fire Strike to test the performance of dedicated gaming PCs, or use the Fire Strike Extreme preset for high-end systems with multiple GPUs. Fire Strike uses a multi-threaded DirectX 11 engine to test DirectX 11 hardware. Fire Strike Benchmark Results:
Benchmark Results: The Intel Pentium G3258 was able to score 5099 overall in Futuremark 3DMark Firestrike. The stock G3258 was ~80 points higher overall score but the Physics score was nearly 200 points higher. Once the Intel Pentium G3258 processor was overclocked to 4.8GHz, the Physics score jumped from 3320 to 5041! That's a gain of 51.8% from a 1.6GHz overclock! Not only did the physics score improve, the overall score improved by 400 points as well to a high of 5499!
Bioshock InfiniteBioShock Infinite is a first-person shooter video game developed by Irrational Games, and published by 2K Games. BioShock Infinite is the third installment in the BioShock series, and though it is not part of the storyline of previous BioShock games, it does feature similar gameplay concepts and themes. BioShock Infinite uses a Modified Unreal Engine 3 game engine and was released worldwide on March 26, 2013.
We tested BioShock Infinite with the Ultra game settings. Benchmark Results: At 1920x1080, the Intel Pentium G3258 was just a hair behind the Intel Core i7 4770K with an average of 94.34 frames per second compared to the 4770K's average of 95.69 frames per second. Overclocking the Pentium G3258 to 4.8GHz the gap was closed as the system averaged 95.21 frames per second, a gain of .9%. BIOSHOCK Infinite Medium Image Quality Settings Benchmark Results: I didn't see much of a difference between the processors while I had the image quality at the maximum so I dialed back the IQ to see where what would happen without all of the load on the GPU. Running BIOSHOCK on the medium IQ settings, the processors stacked them selves up pretty much the way I would expect. The Intel Core i7-4770K was the dominant force here with an average of 197.23 frames per second at 1920x1080 while the Intel Pentium G3258 averaged 136.07 frames per second. While the Pentium G3258 was overclocked it was able to pick up a couple fps and average 140.00 frames per second at 1920x1080.
Hitman: AbsolutionHitman: Absolution is an action-adventure stealth DirecX 11 video game developed by IO Interactive and published by Square Enix. It is the fifth entry in the Hitman game series, and runs on IO Interactive's proprietary Glacier 2 game engine. This game title uses the Glacier 2 game engine and was released on November 20th, 2012.
We benchmarked Hitman: Absolution with Ultra Settings. Benchmark Results: The Intel Pentium G3258 was able to average 31.47 frames per second at 1920x1080 at both overclocked and stock clock speeds but at 1280x1024 there was 3.33 frames per second difference between the two. Hitman Absolution Medium Image Quality Settings Benchmark Results: At lower image quality settings the Intel Pentium G3258 starts to become the system bottle neck. The G3258 averaged just over 46 frames per second at both 1920x1080 and 1280x1024. The Intel Core i7 4770K was nearly double that at 1920x1080 with an average of 81.8 frames per second and more than double at 1280x1024 with an average of 103.23 frames per second. Overclocking the Pentium G3258 helped to close the gap and was able to average 60.70 frames per second at 1920x1080.
On March 5th, 2013 Square Enix released Tomb Raider, billed as a reboot of the franchise. In Tomb Raider, the player is confronted with a much younger Lara Croft who is shipwrecked and finds herself stranded on a mysterious island rife with danger, both natural and human. In contrast to the earlier games Croft is portrayed as vulnerable, acting out of necessity, desperation and sheer survival rather than for a greater cause or personal gain.
The game has been built on Crystal Dynamics's game engine called the "Crystal Engine" and the graphics look fantastic. AMD and Crystal Dyanmic's worked on a new technology called TressFX Hair, which AMD describes as “the world’s first in-game implementation of a real-time, per-strand hair physics system” for this game title. We set the image quality to ultimate for benchmarking, but we disabled TressFX Hair under the advanced tab to be fair to NVIDIA graphics cards that don't support the feature. Benchmark Results: In Tomb Raider, there is very little performance difference between the various processors. The Intel Pentium G3258 was able to take the lead when overclocked with an average of 85.7 frames per second at 1920x1080 and 116.30 frames per second at 1280x1024. Between the stock clocks of the G3258 and the overclocked clocks, there is only .83 FPS difference at 1920x1080 and .47 FPS difference at 1280x1024. Tomb Raider Medium Image Quality Settings Benchmark Results: Tomb Raider doesn't show off the same performance gains and differences that we have seen in the previous game titles. At 1920x1080 all of the processors were pretty close with only 2.24 frames per second separating them. At 1280x1024 the Intel Core i7-4770K took a slight lead over the overclocked Pentium G3258 which hit an average of 231.43 frames per second.
Battlefield 4Battlefield 4 is a first-person shooter video game developed by EA Digital Illusions CE (DICE) and published by Electronic Arts. It is a sequel to 2011's Battlefield 3 and was released on October 29, 2013 in North America. Battlefield 4's single-player Campaign takes place in 2020, six years after the events of its predecessor. Tensions between Russia and the United States have beem running at a record high. On top of this, China is also on the brink of war, as Admiral Chang, the main antagonist, plans to overthrow China's current government; and, if successful, the Russians will have full support from the Chinese, bringing China into a war with the United States. This game title uses the Frostbite 3 game engine and looks great. We tested Battlefield 4 with the Ultra graphics quality preset as most discrete desktop graphics cards can easily play with this IQ setting at 1080P and we still want to be able to push the higher-end cards down the road. We used FRAPS to benchmark each card with these settings on the Shanghai level. Benchmark Results: In Battlefield 4 the $60 dual core Pentium G3258 was able to hit an average higher than the Intel Core i7-4770K when the G3258 was overclocked to 4.8GHz. While there isn't much of a difference, it's a clear sign here that frequency plays a bigger part in the Battlefield 4 performance than the number of CPU Cores. At 1920x1080 the overclocked Intel G3258 was averaging 59.14 frames per second at 1920x1080 and 85.55 frames per second at 1280x1024, the Intel Core i7-4770K averaged 58.67 frames per second at 1920x1080 and 85.15 frames per second at 1280x1024. It's not significant differences, and could be variances in the runs since this is a FRAPS benchmarked game, but it seems a little to consistent that the faster frequency chips are just slightly ahead. Battlefield 4 Medium Image Quality Settings Benchmark Results: The Intel Pentium G3258 was a bit of a bottle neck in Battlefield 4, still plenty playable with an average of 105.58 frames per second. The Intel Core i7-4770K was able to average 135.36 frames per second at 1920x1080 which is ~30FPS faster than the stock G3258, overclocking the G3258 to 4.8GHz closed the gap to only 3.1 frames per second with an average of 132.21 frames per second.
Metro Last Light
Metro: Last Light is a first-person shooter video game developed by Ukrainian studio 4A Games and published by Deep Silver. The game is set in a post-apocalyptic world and features action-oriented gameplay with a combination of survival horror elements. It uses the 4A Game engine and was released in May 2013. Metro: Last Light was benchmarked with very high image quality settings with the SSAA set to off and 16x AF. These settings are tough for entry level discrete graphics cards, but are more than playable on high-end gaming graphics cards. We benchmarked this game title on the Theater level. Benchmark Results: In Metro: Last Light the Intel Pentium G3258 saw some huge gains when overclocked! At the stock speed of 3.2GHz the G3258 averaged 42.33 frames per second at 1920x1080, when the processor was overclocked to 4.8GHz the performance at that resolution increased to 47.33 frames per second. That's a gain of nearly 12% from simply overclocking a $60 processor! The gains at 1280x1024 were even more impressive. At the stock speeds the system increased from 48.39 frames per second to 59.78 frames per second! That's a fuzz over 23%! Metro Last Light Medium Image Quality Settings Benchmark Results: Lowering the Image Quality settings to medium in Metro Last Light really showed the Intel Pentium G3258 being the system bottleneck. At the maximum resolution of 1920x1080, the G3258 averaged 50.29 frames per second while the Intel Core i7-4770K averaged 86.59 frames per second. Overclocking the ~$65 Intel Pentium G3258 to 4.8GHz increased the average to 66.36 frames per second which is a great performance boost for a budget chip!