We have with us the Core i3-10320 quad-core desktop processor from Intel's new 10th Gen Core "Comet Lake" desktop processor family. This is a rather rare part as it's positioned between the more popular i3-10300 and the Core i5-10400 six-core parts. The Core i3-10320 retails at $160, same as the Core i5-10400F. The rationale behind this product could be to offer four high clock-speed cores with HyperThreading for gamers who don't need lower clocked 6-core parts, yet. The i3-10320 also comes with integrated graphics, which the i5-10400F lacks. You need to pony up $180 for the i5-10400 that comes with it. The Core i3-xx3xx series traditionally represented a segmentation within the Core i3 brand-extension from the i3-xx1xx series, by usually offering more L3 cache and higher clock speeds. While both the i3-10100 and i3-10320 are 4-core/8-thread parts, the latter has 8 MB of L3 cache, while the former makes do with 6 MB.
The Core i3-10320 is essentially a Core i7-7700K with a 60% discount, and the lack of an unlocked multiplier. Both are 4-core/8-thread parts with 8 MB of L3 cache and use "Skylake" CPU cores, although the i3-10320 is designed for the more modern LGA1200 platform and clocked higher: 3.80 GHz base frequency compared to 4.20 GHz for the i7-7700K, and 4.60 GHz maximum Turbo Boost frequency compared to the 4.50 GHz of the i7-7700K. So you could think of the i3-10320 as an i7-7700K with a tiny automated overclock from your motherboard. The i5-10400/F, in comparison, is clocked at 2.90 GHz base with up to 4.30 GHz boost.
This kind of processing muscle is coming to you at just $160 because of the fierce competition from AMD, which has forced Intel to increase core and thread counts generation over generation. Intel also had to bump clock speeds and figure out new power-management algorithms. As we mentioned earlier, the Core i3-10320 in this review isn't an unlocked processor like the i7-7700K, so you can't overclock it by dialing up the base clock multiplier. Intel has enabled other ways to squeeze more performance out of this chip, such as overriding its power limits to help it hold onto boost frequencies better, overclocking the DMI and PCI-Express graphics buses, and notching the base clock itself up to 103 MHz.
In this review, we take the Core i3-10320 for a spin to test a couple of hypotheses: firstly, whether it's worth sacrificing two full cores in favor of higher clock speeds and integrated graphics if you're mainly gaming, compared to the i5-10400F. It will also be interesting to see if the extra cache compared to the i3-10100 finally accounts for anything due to the higher clocks. We are testing the Core i3-10320 across four configurations in this review. The first (green bar) is the processor completely at stock, out of the box, with the motherboard made to respect Intel specs, but with the standard memory clock for our CPU reviews. The second (brown bar) sees us run the memory at DDR4-2666, which is the maximum memory clock possible for this processor when paired with cost-effective H410 and B460 motherboards. The third configuration (red bar) represents an overclocked processor by dialing up its base clock to 103 MHz and relaxing the power limits. The fourth configuration (blue bar) sees us max out the turbo frequency by relaxing the power limits.
|Price||Cores / |
|Core i3-10100||$130||4 / 8||3.6 GHz||4.3 GHz||6 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 3 3100||$100||4 / 8||3.6 GHz||3.9 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 1400||$105||4 / 8||3.2 GHz||3.4 GHz||8 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 3 1300X||$115||4 / 4||3.4 GHz||3.7 GHz||8 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 1600||$110||6 / 12||3.2 GHz||3.6 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 3 3300X||$120||4 / 8||3.8 GHz||4.3 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 2600||$120||6 / 12||3.4 GHz||3.9 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i3-8300||$140||4 / 4||3.7 GHz||N/A||8 MB||65 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i3-10300||$150||4 / 8||3.7 GHz||4.4 GHz||8 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 5 1500X||$140||4 / 8||3.5 GHz||3.7 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 2400G||$150||4 / 8||3.6 GHz||3.9 GHz||4 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 1600X||$150||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.0 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 2600X||$150||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.2 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i3-10320||$160||4 / 8||3.8 GHz||4.6 GHz||8 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Core i5-9400F||$180||6 / 6||2.9 GHz||4.1 GHz||9 MB||65 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-10400F||$160||6 / 12||2.9 GHz||4.3 GHz||12 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 7 1700||$170||8 / 16||3.0 GHz||3.7 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 1700X||$170||8 / 16||3.4 GHz||3.8 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Core i5-10500||$200||6 / 12||3.1 GHz||4.5 GHz||12 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 5 3600||$175||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.2 GHz||32 MB||65 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 2700||$170||8 / 16||3.2 GHz||4.1 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i5-8400||$180||6 / 6||2.8 GHz||4.0 GHz||9 MB||65 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Ryzen 7 2700X||$195||8 / 16||3.7 GHz||4.3 GHz||16 MB||105 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i3-8350K||$195||4 / 4||4.0 GHz||N/A||8 MB||91 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-8600K||$250||6 / 6||3.6 GHz||4.3 GHz||9 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-9600K||$200||6 / 6||3.7 GHz||4.6 GHz||9 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-10600K||$265||6 / 12||4.1 GHz||4.8 GHz||12 MB||125 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 5 3600X||$205||6 / 12||3.8 GHz||4.4 GHz||32 MB||95 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|