Best AM3+ CPUs [2021 Product Review]

It’s no doubt that AMD has been faring exponentially well in recent years because of the new innovations implemented in the latest chipsets. But can the same be said about the older ones like AM3+? Well, yes. From time immemorial, AMD has been doing nothing but ensuring that whatever they manufacture stands at the top, and AM3+ chipsets are no different in terms of batch processing and exhilarated performance window. Speaking from personal experience, I remember that I bought an FX series chipset in 2016, and still today, it’s working all fine without any issues on my second PC, which is dedicated to programming only. I told you my anecdotal experience to provide enough evidence that you can rely on AM3+ chipsets even in 2021 for playing a couple of years old games and for business purposes.

Today, I will be enumerating all the best AM3+ CPU that you can get hold of for your little working/gaming systems. So, without any further ado, let’s dive right into the listing!

List of 10 Best AM3+ CPUs

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Best Fastest AM3+ CPUCheck Price
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AMD FX-8350 4.0 GHz (4.2 GHz Turbo)

Best Fastest AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-8350 4.0 GHz (4.2 GHz Turbo)
AMD FX-8350 4.0 GHz (4.2 GHz Turbo)

AMD FX-8350 is a resounding chipset that ensures that operations are done at a withstanding rate. Not only this, but it’s a wonderful powerhouse for running contemporary games. For example, many users reported that they were able to run a copious number of games at a decent frame rate. What does this mean? Well, it indicates that you can rely on the FX-8350 for normal day-to-day gaming and tasks.

Apart from this, do bear in mind that the chipset doesn’t come along with a fan/heatsink, so you would have to purchase it at your own expense, and that’s the only downside of the CPU. Not to mention, the base frequency of the FX-8350 is 4.0 GHz, which can be boosted to up to 4.2 GHz. That’s wonderful because not many old chipsets are able to have boosted frequencies embedded inside the algorithms. On top of that, with this chipset, you get hold of around 8 cores, which correlates to 8 threads in general. For what it’s worth, the cache of the chipset stands at 8MB, which is significantly better than the previous generations. Last but not least, the processor requires around 125 watts of power supply, so do make sure that you have enough remaining wattages to power on the CPU. As for the performance of the CPU, it’s exceptional and to the point.

Pros
  • The processor can easily achieve 4.2 GHz of boosted frequency
  • Can run contemporary games at low-mid settings
  • 8 cores and 8 threads
Cons
  • Doesn’t come with a heatsink/fan
  • Expensive

AMD Phenom II X4 945 Deneb 3

Best Cheapest AM3+ CPU

AMD Phenom II X4 945 Deneb 3
AMD Phenom II X4 945 Deneb 3

If you don’t want a chipset to cost you an arm and a leg, then AMD Phenom II X4 945 could be your best option because you can get it at an extremely low price point. Because believe me, it only costs you around $60, and that’s it. Apart from this, the quad-core nature of the CPU makes it a resounding choice for small-based tasks, for example, coding and designing. Apart from this, the AMD Phenom II X4 945 has a good performance ratio because of its base frequency of 3.0 GHz, which is a good figure considering how cheap the chipset is.

Unfortunately, there are no boost or overclocking options, so do bear that in mind before finalizing the AMD Phenom II X4, as it’s an older chipset with little functionality in terms of clock upgrades. Do you know the best part about the CPU? Well, it’s backwards compatible with AM2+ and AM3; thus, making it an all-rounder choice for many people who don’t want to upgrade their motherboards. Moreover, this CPU offers a bus speed of 667 MHz, coupled with 4 cores and 4 threads. Last but not least, the AMD Phenom II was first released in 2016, so you would have to keep the time span in mind before contacting customer support for faulty integrations because you might not get anything feasible or valuable in return as feedback.

Pros
  • Cheapest option available
  • 4 cores and 4 threads
  • Offers a 3.0 GHz as a base frequency
Cons
  • Can malfunction at times because of out-of-date features

AMD FX-Series FX-8150

Best Gaming AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-Series FX-8150
AMD FX-Series FX-8150

The next product on the list is FX-8150, which is a formidable entry in terms of versatility and performance binding. For example, the recently published reviews on e-commerce sites and forums like Reddit are filled with overwhelmingly positive entries that speak highly of this processor. Apart from this, the processor has a base frequency of 3.6 GHz, which is exceptionally high for day-to-day tasks. And thus, you can use the same processor for gaming too. But do remember that this processor has an AM3+ socket, and contemporary chipsets are using AM4, so yeah, you won’t be able to run games on high settings due to bottlenecks.

For what it’s worth, the chipset can easily achieve a figure of 4.2 GHz when on turbo mode. This is a wonderful thing because now your processor can process more tasks per unit of time, which ultimately leads to a faster transaction. Moreover, the chipset has around 8 cores and 8 threads which is a plus point if you intend to game on this processor. It’s worth mentioning that the processor was released in 2011, which is quite a long time ago, and any types of faulty algorithms may cause issues with the latest components that were only released recently. So, it’s better you pair up this processor with either compatible hardware or get those that are as old as the chipset itself to retain functionality. Overall, it’s a fantastic CPU that will not disappoint you even in the least.

Pros
  • Versatile
  • It can be overclocked to 4.2 GHz
Cons
  • It’s expensive when put against its release date

AMD FX 6100 Hexa-Core

Best Performative AM3+ CPU

AMD FX 6100 Hexa-Core
AMD FX 6100 Hexa-Core

AMD FX 6100 is a Hexa-Core processor with all the induced fundamental key features to run games at a decent setting. Not only this, but you can use the same processor for office-based tasks, for example, rendering and coding. Do you know the best part about the chipset? Well, it lies within the acceptable range of $80, which isn’t expensive at all, considering you are getting 6 cores and 6 threads with it. Apart from this, the base frequency of the CPU is 3300 MHz, which can be pushed up to 3900 MHz on turbo mode. This is something I always look out for in processors: Turbo and OC mode. So, if you are getting either of them, don’t think twice; just buy the processor already.

Moreover, with this processor, you are also getting a bus speed of 2600 MHz which is wonderful in terms of transacting data TO and FRO from the components. Furthermore, the chipset contains all the required commands like SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSE4 and SSE4.1 and 4.2. This is coupled with AES, AVX, and XOP commands that are relatively new in the field but required for running the latest games. Last but not least, the processor is quite performative in terms of processing, so you don’t have to worry about bottlenecks if you are using the chipset with a compatible GPU.

Pros
  • Highly functional
  • Decent price-to-performance ratio
Cons
  • A little outdated

AMD FX-8320 (3.5 GHz)

Best Flagship AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-8320 (3.5 GHz)
AMD FX-8320 (3.5 GHz)

Flagship models are my favourite, and I would definitely recommend them to my beloved readers. Well, AMD FX-8320 is a magnificent processor with a base frequency of 3.5 GHz. On top of that, the processor comes with 8 cores and 8 threads which are enough to run multiple processes at the same time, known as threading. Having said that, the AMD FX-8320 competes against FX 8150 (its predecessor) with a winning margin of 2.8%, which is wonderful considering the difference in price point between the two entries.

For what it’s worth, the chipset competes with the Intel Core i7-940, which is again worth noting. This just doesn’t stop here. You can achieve the turbo frequency mode when the CPU is at its limiting capacity. And the best part about this is that you can easily get 4.0 GHz on turbo mode, which is fascinating. Moreover, the AMD FX-8320 comes with 8MB of L2 and L3 cache combined with 348KB of L1 cache. So yeah, that’s something too as well. Last but not least, the processor is unlocked, which means you can put it for overclocking.

Pros
  • Overclockable
  • Amazing Max boost clock
  • 8 cores and 8 threads
Cons
  • Near to none

AMD FX-6300

Best Overall AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-6300
AMD FX-6300

If we are talking about a processor that’s an all-rounder with everything balanced out, then our fingers point at the FX-6300 chipset. First things first, it’s a marvellous chipset that comes with 6 cores and 6 threads. In 2021, 6 cores and 6 threads are good enough for playing games at a medium setting, but if you want to crank up the in-game settings, you would be required to have at least 8 core processors. Anyhow, the AMD FX-6300 is not a disappointment at all but works like a charm on a myriad of systems, including office-based workstations as well.

Apart from this, the performance of the AMD FX-6300 is quite impressive considering its base frequency which is at 3.5 GHz, and that automatically increases up to 3.8 GHz when the processor is 100% stressed. The only downside of the chipset is that you don’t get to overclock it. So yeah, if you are planning to push the chipset’s limit, you can’t because there’s no such headroom for increasing the frequency manually.

Last but not least, the maximum operating temperature of the FX-6300 is 70.5 degrees which is somewhat good for tropical regions.

Pros
  • Top-notch performance
  • Hexa-Core
  • Compatible
Cons
  • It cannot be overclocked

AMD FX-4300 3.8 GHz Quad-core

Best Alternative Budget AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-4300 3.8 GHz Quad-core
AMD FX-4300 3.8 GHz Quad-core

AMD FX-4300 is an alternative budget-friendly processor that will only cost you around $40. Have you ever imagined getting something this cheap? Well, if not, then now is the time because FX-4300 will be surprising you in many ways. Although the processor is quite old and doesn’t come with all the required commands for running the latest games, it’s still sufficiently programmed to meet your small-scale needs. For example, if you are into coding and rendering, and want to start developing a game, then this processor will be enough to make your dreams come true.

Do you know what’s amazing about this processor? Well, it’s open to overclocking. This means you can manually set the figure based off on how much heat the processor can endure. On top of that, the base frequency of the chipset stands at 3.8 GHz, which cranks itself up to 4.0 GHz when the processor usage skyrockets. All in all, AMD FX-4300 is a chipset that will not disappoint you even in the least!

Pros
  • Overclockable
  • Phenomenal clock speed
  • Extremely cheap
  • Quad-core (for small-scale tasks)
Cons
  • Not a good choice for high-end GPUs

AMD FX-Series FX-8120

Best Efficient AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-Series FX-8120
AMD FX-Series FX-8120

AMD FX-Series FX 8120 is a dream come true for many gaming enthusiasts as it brings in revolutionary features that weren’t present in its predecessors. First things first, the processor has around 8 cores and 8 threads which are sufficient enough for multi-tasking. You can game, code, run different encoders at the same time, and the CPU won’t even budge. It’s this fantastic! Apart from this, the base clock of the CPU is 3.1 GHz, which is good enough for the majority of the applications. But the best part about the CPU is that it can be boosted up to 4.0 GHz. It just doesn’t stop here. You can still overclock the CPU and maybe bring it to 4.2 GHz if you really know how to bring about the processor’s true potential.

Moreover, the AMD FX-8120 is an extremely efficient CPU that has around 8MB of L3 cache and 348KB of L1 cache. These caches work like a funnel and ensure that the CPU is fed each second with the required data with no delays. Last but not least, the operating temperature of the CPU is 61 Degrees, so make sure there’s a decent amount of airflow inside the case.

Pros
  • 8 cores and threads
  • Overclockable
Cons
  • Low max operating temperature (makes it the worst choice for tropical regions)

AMD Athlon II X2 240

Best Small Scale AM3+ CPU

AMD Athlon II X2 240
AMD Athlon II X2 240

Let me assert as clearly as possible that the AMD Athlon II X2 240 is not for gaming at all. However, it’s a well-thought-out processor for small scale tasks only. For example, with AMD Athlon II, you can probably perform coding and routine transactional orders. As for the rendering and playing games, it’s just not possible to have top-notch results with such a restricted CPU. Anyhow, the chipset still works like a charm on a myriad of setups. Just make sure that you are pairing it with a compatible GPU; otherwise, get ready to experience bottlenecks.

Apart from this, the processor has a base frequency of 2800 MHz with a bus speed of 533 MHz. On top of that, the chipset is cross-compatible on both the AM3 and AM2 sockets, so you really don’t have to worry about rolling back to the previous version of the motherboard. Last but not least, the secondary cache of the CPU is somewhat around 2MB which makes it a good candidate for processing data at a decent rate.

Pros
  • Efficient
  • Cheap
Cons
  • Can’t run the latest games

AMD FX-9590 8-Core

Best High-End AM3+ CPU

AMD FX-9590 8-Core
AMD FX-9590 8-Core

The last entry on the list is AMD FX-9590 which is an extremely expensive processor. Probably, it will cost you around $300+, but believe me, it’s really worth it. For example, with this processor, you can literally play modern games. So, what else does one need if they are able to run games flawlessly on a previous generation chipset! Anyhow, the base clock of the FX-9590 is 4.7 GHz which is a huge number. Do you know what’s surprising about this chipset? The boost clock of the processor is 5.0 GHz which is rarely the case with threadripper at times.

For what it’s worth, the processor is open to overclocking. All you have to do is pay a visit to the profiling section, and set a curve for the overclocking, and bingo; it’s done. The only downside of the processor is that its maximum operating temperature is 57 Degrees which is very low. The chipset might malfunction in hot and tropical regions. Apart from this, the AMD FX-9590 is a marvellous choice for gamers, renderers, and coders alike.

Pros
  • High base and boost clock speeds
  • Overclockable
Cons
  • Expensive
  • Low maximum operating temperature

Buyer’s Guide

Future-Proofing

It doesn’t necessarily apply to every chipset that has the AM3+ tag, but it’s in your best interest to make ends meet if you are not planning to upgrade anytime soon. Why would you invest in a CPU over and over again? So if it’s a short-term investment, it’s recommended to get any chipset; otherwise, go for those models that are closer to AM4 CPUs. This way, you will be able to future-proof your system from at least a couple of years.

Price Tag

It’s rational and practical to not spend a lot on such chipsets, which will become obsolete in a few years. Because at the moment, we already have AM4 chipsets and presumably a more refined version of the existing AM4 chipset in the coming years/months. So, why spend hundreds of bucks when you can get an AM3+ CPU at a reasonable price and then upgrade it to AM4 later on. That’s a good deal, I believe, but again, the choice is yours.

Performance and Gaming

Be it a 2-year-old chipset; if it’s unable to propel a decent number of FPS on the screen, then I don’t really think that CPU is worth a shot. Thus, you need to ensure that whatever chipset you finalize should have gaming capabilities, or to the say least, be performative and efficient in tasks like management, rendering and coding. This will save you from the hurdle of replacing CPUs at short notice, ultimately saving you time and money.

Final words

This brings us to a close. I hope the article was viable enough to give you a decisive stance. Anyhow, if you have any queries or questions regarding the entries, kindly let us know in the comment session. Apart from this, here are our three top recommendations for the best AM3+ CPUs:

  • If you want to game at a high setting, then buy off AMD FX-9590 8-Core
  • If you need something cheaper, then AMD FX-4300 3.8 GHz Quad-core is your best shot
  • For performance, I would recommend going for AMD FX-8350 4.0 GHz (4.2 GHz Turbo)

FAQ

The AM3+ was released in mid-2011, following the success of AM3, which was released in 2009. So yeah, currently, AM3+ is a decade old (the base chipset). But again, the newer models have more advanced features, so you don’t have to worry about that.

It’s AMD FX-9590 because of high core performance and withstanding base frequency. On this processor, you can run anything simultaneously without having a fear of your processor breaking down.

No, Ryzen processors use the latest AM4 socket, so you won’t be able to use those chipsets on the AM3+ motherboard.

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