Battle of the CPUs: i3 10100F vs i5 10400 in Star Citizen

"Intel 10th Gen i3 10100F VS i5 10400 that is what we are testing today! Are either of them good enough to be the minimum spec CPU? I’ve tested against loads of different chips, with different RAM and different GPU’s!

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This video compares the performance of Intel’s 10th generation i3 and i5 CPUs in Star Citizen. The testing was done with two setups: one with slower RAM and a GTX 1660 for minimum spec testing, and another with faster RAM running at 3600 and a GTX 4080 for higher performance testing.

Throughout the testing, it was consistently found that the i5 outperformed the i3. The i3’s four cores and eight threads were not sufficient for handling the workload of Star Citizen, and it fell behind in performance. In contrast, the i5’s six cores and twelve threads proved to be more capable, especially when paired with faster RAM and a faster GPU.

For the minimum spec testing, all CPUs delivered playable performance, with the GPU taking on most of the load. However, the i5 10400 stood out as the recommended choice as it matched the performance of the 3600. In the mineral reset testing, which compares slower CPUs, the i3 consistently fell behind the i5 10400 and the i7-7700 CPUs, both sporting six cores and eight threads. With faster RAM, all CPUs showed improved performance, with the i3 also reaching above 30 FPS.

In the render thread test, which stresses the CPU, the i3 struggled due to its limited resources, while the i5 10400, i7-7700, and 3600 performed well. Faster RAM provided a slight increase in frames for the i5 10400 and matched the performance of the 3600.

In summary, the i3’s four threads and eight cores fell short in handling Star Citizen, making it less playable compared to the i5 10400. The i5 10400, in turn, proved to be a good candidate for a minimum spec CPU, offering playable performance throughout the game. The i7-7700, i5 10400, and Ryzen 5 3600 were all found to be in the same performance range and recommended for the game. Further testing with the i7-10700 will be conducted to explore the scaling between the i3, i5, and i7.