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Is the Core i3-10100T CPU Good for Gaming?

Find out if Intel's Core i3 10100T processor is good for gaming.

10100T Good for Gaming Chuck Fortner / Unsplash

Last Updated: November 26, 2022

Written by Kevin Jones

When selecting a CPU for gaming, the most important characteristics are the frequency (clock speed), core/thread count, cache size, and supported memory type. Additional considerations, such as integrated graphics and overclocking needs, may also influence your selection.

In addition to discussing how good the 10100T is for gaming, this article will discuss our recommended:

Check another CPU:

Is the 10100T Good for Gaming?

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When using Intel's Core i3 10100T CPU for gaming, you can expect poor game performance with either a high-performance CPU cooler or a stock CPU cooler.

Check out our Recommended LGA 1200 Coolers below.

This performance assessment is based on the following characteristics of the CPU and their relevance to the latest graphics-intense games:

  • 6 MB of L3 cache is poor for performance
  • 4 cores allow for mediocre performance
  • 3.00 GHz base frequency
  • 3.80 GHz single-core max turbo boost frequency is good for performance (requires a high-end cooler)
  • Max stock DDR4 speed of 2666 MHz can be mediocre for performance
  • Lack of overclocking support cannot benefit performance
  • PCIe 3.0 support can be poor for performance (limits potential of fastest SSDs and GPUs)
  • The 10100T has integrated graphics support, but this performance assessment assumes you will use a graphics card. Integrated graphics support is mediocre or worse with the latest graphics-intense games.
Check out these Intel Core CPUs that are Good or Excellent for gaming:

Is the Cache Size of the 10100T Good for Gaming?

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A CPU's cache is a small amount of memory, close to the CPU cores, containing recently used data.

Games performance can improve as cache size increases, as it will reduce delays when retrieving commonly used game assets from memory.

An L3 cache capacity of at least 20 MB is ideal for game performance.

The Intel Core i3-10100T has an L3 cache capacity of 6 MB.

The 10100T's lackluster 6 MB of L3 cache is poor for performance with the latest graphics-intense games.

Is the Core Count of the 10100T Good for Gaming?

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Increased core counts can improve the performance of games that use them, but most modern games don't benefit from having more than 6–8 cores. Remember that cache sizes often increase along with core counts, so if you want to increase your L3 cache, you may need to get a CPU with more cores.

Intel's Core i3-10100T CPUs have 4 cores.

The 10100T's 4 cores allow for mediocre performance with the latest graphics-intense games.

Is the Clock Speed of the 10100T Good for Gaming?

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Single-core performance is essential for some games, as many don't take full advantage of multiple cores.

Turbo boost frequencies are only achieved under ideal circumstances. The safest strategy for consistent gaming performance with a basic cooler is to get a higher base clock speed processor. However, with adequate cooling, you may be able to maintain speeds near the max boost frequency.

The 10100T CPU's lack of support for overclocking cannot benefit performance with the latest graphics-intense games.

The processor has a 3.00 GHz base frequency and supports a 3.80 GHz single-core max turbo frequency.

The 10100T has a 3.00 GHz base frequency, which is the speed before boosting. You can reach these base frequencies even without a high-end cooler.

With a high-end cooler, the 10100T's 3.80 GHz single-core max turbo boost frequency is good for performance with the latest graphics-intense games. You can maintain these frequencies with a high-end cooler.

Is the DDR Support of the 10100T Good for Gaming?

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The 10100T CPU's support for DDR4 with a max stock speed of 2666 MHz can be mediocre for performance with the latest graphics-intense games.

Faster PC memory can improve game performance and frame rates, but using the fastest RAM may not have as much of an impact as upgrading your CPU and graphics card or adding more RAM.

Learn about our recommended RAM for the 10100T in Choosing the Best RAM for Intel's Core i3-10100T CPU.

What Does the T Suffix in 10100T Mean?

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Processor Name SuffixMeaning
T"T" means it is a power-optimized lifestyle CPU. In other words, it is designed not to use as much power and thus not generate as much heat. These CPUs are ideal for lower-performance small form factor PCs and are sold as part of a pre-built system.

The 10100T model name doesn't have an F suffix. Non-F CPUs contain integrated graphics, and a separate graphics card isn't required if your motherboard includes video-output connectors (e.g., HDMI).

The 10100T model name doesn't have a K suffix. Non-K CPUs can not be overclocked.

Dell OptiPlex 3080 - Intel Core i3-10100T Dell OptiPlex 3080 - Intel Core i3-10100T Check Price on Amazon Amazon Affiliate Link

Cooling the 10100T

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A CPU cooler's TDP (Thermal Design Power) rating indicates how much heat it can dissipate in watts. If the cooler can't keep your CPU cool enough, your CPU may throttle (slow down), and your cooler will constantly run at full speed.

Intel CPU specifications indicate this power dissipation number as "Processor Base Power."

The Core i3-10100T has a TDP of 35 watts.

A CPU cooler can still work with a lower TDP rating than the TDP of a CPU. However, the CPU will eventually throttle itself to a lower frequency to allow itself to cool.

The CPU may not achieve or maintain maximum turbo speeds without adequate cooling.

Learn more in What is the Best Type of CPU cooler for a Gaming PC?.

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Locked Intel CPUs may come with a stock CPU cooler. These CPU models do not have a "K" in the name. While stock coolers will prevent your CPU from overheating, your CPU will throttle its performance during games and other intensive tasks. Higher TDP coolers will keep your CPU at turbo speeds for longer durations. Stock coolers are often quite loud at their maximum speed.

Best AIO Liquid Cooler: Enermax Liqmax III 360

  • This Enermax liquid cooler has an excellent cooling capability with a 360-watt TDP (Thermal Design Power).
  • Supports a variety of CPU sockets, including Intel LGA 2066, 2011-3, 2011, 1700, 1200, 1366, 1156, 1155, 1151, 1150 and AMD AM4, AM3+, AM3, AM2+, AM2, FM2+, FM2, FM1.
  • Quiet operation at 14-27 dBA.
  • Make sure your computer case dimensions support this, as it will take up a decent amount of space! Enermax Liqmax III 360 Enermax Liqmax III 360 Check Price on Amazon Amazon Affiliate Link

Best Dual-Fan Air CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15

  • Dual 140 mm fans provide 220-watt TDP (183 NSPR) of cooling capability.
  • Supports a variety of CPU sockets, including Intel LGA 1700, 1200, 1156, 1155, 1151, 1150, 2011, 2066 and AMD AM4, AM3, AM3+, AM2, AM2+, FM2, FM2+.
  • Quiet operation at 24.6 dBA. Noctua NH-D15, Premium CPU Cooler Noctua NH-D15, Premium CPU Cooler Check Price on Amazon Amazon Affiliate Link

Runner-Up - Dual-Fan Air CPU Cooler: Thermaltake TOUGHAIR 510

  • This CPU cooler doesn't have any fancy LED lights, but the dual 120 mm fans do a great job of cooling LGA 1200 CPUs.
  • Suppose you think this cooler will take up too much space. In that case, Thermaltake has a few single-fan TOUGHAIR variants which use different orientations.
  • This CPU cooler has a 2000 RPM max speed for optimal cooling.
  • 180-watt TDP (Thermal Design Power). Thermaltake TOUGHAIR 510 Thermaltake TOUGHAIR 510 Check Price on Amazon Amazon Affiliate Link
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Before purchasing memory, review your motherboard specification to verify which speeds are supported. For example, if a DDR4 motherboard stated that it supports "DDR4 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3300(O.C.) / 3200 / 3000," that would mean that it could support DDR4-3400, DDR4-3333, and DDR4-3300 with memory overclocking, and DDR4-3200 and DDR4-3000 at stock speeds. Motherboard specifications also indicate the maximum capacity per stick of RAM (DIMM) and across all slots.

Learn More About the Intel Core i3-10100T

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You can find detailed 10100T specifications on Intel's site.

Other Considerations When Building a PC

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Want to brush up on other new technologies to consider when building a computer? Check out these articles: