Building your own computer can be very time consuming and rewarding at the same time. While piecing the new hardware together is usually a relatively easy task, picking out the right components in the first place is what can make it more troublesome. The first component that must be decided upon before any build takes place is the processor, as this will dictate which motherboard can be used and often the memory type.
With so many choices at your disposal, we understand it's hard not to become overwhelmed. Therefore we have taken a dozen processors priced within the $100 - $200 price range and pitted them against each other, so you can draw clear conclusions on what will suit you the best. We have also added a segment that compares all 12 processors on a clock-for-clock basis. This comparison of architectures aims to remove the operating frequency impact on performance and allows us to show you exactly how these CPUs perform side-by-side.
Besides the processors themselves, we will be also taking under consideration the value and performance differences between the platforms used, so motherboards and chipsets will be factored into the whole equation. And now, let's meet the contenders both from the green and blue camps...
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