The GTX 1060 is the most powerful card on the market, but you might be surprised to know that it can run on a low-end CPU like an i3 2120. Here’s what you need to know before buying your next GPU.

The gtx 1060 6gb is a graphics card that can be used in the gaming industry. It has been said to perform well with low end CPUs, but it does not have the processing power of higher end cards.

I purchased a Zotac Gtx 1060 amp edition for about $390 last week in India since the costs are so low. At the same time, I was relieved that I could finally get rid of my gtx 650 ti, which was underperforming. But I was also aware that my graphics card would be bottlenecked by my entry-level i3 2120 processor. So I had two options: update to the Skylake platform and purchase an i5 6600k processor with a Z170 chipset motherboard and DDR4 RAM, or get a high-end graphics card.


I chose to get the card first since upgrading to a more powerful CPU won’t make a significant impact with the gtx 650 ti. In a few weeks, I’ll update my CPU and motherboard anyhow. But what I really wanted to test was how well the GTX 1060 performed with this entry-level i3. I performed benchmarking in a variety of games and received the anticipated results. Is the i3 2120, however, a bottleneck? Check out the benchmarks to find out.

Specs for an entry-level setup include the following:-

i3 2120 @ 3.3 GHz processor

Asrock h61m-vs3 motherboard

Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 memory with a 1333MHz clock speed

450 Watts Corsair VS PSU

6GB GDDR5 Zotac Gtx 1060 Amp Edition GPU

1 TB WD blue 7200 rpm HDD

Battlefield 4: 1080p extreme settings with V-sync enabled.

In campaign mode, the minimum frame rate is 45 frames per second, the maximum frame rate is 63 frames per second, and the average frame rate is 60 frames per second.
Multiplayer (no AA, Vsync on): 48 participants The minimum frame rate is 47 frames per second, the maximum frame rate is 63 frames per second, and the average frame rate is 59 frames per second.
Multiplayer (no AA, no Vsync): 48 players FPS: 50, 107, 75, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50, 50

On ultra settings, the game ran smoothly with and without v-sync, but on multi-player, I had to disable anti-aliasing because the fps would drop to the 30s, rendering the game unplayable. I was getting 60 fps with Vsync on and 75 fps with Vsync off with no AA and everything maxed out.

I was shocked to find that when I adjusted the settings to medium, the fps remained the same, since battlefield 4 is a CPU-intensive game, and the i3 2120 would hold back regardless of whatever settings I used. I noticed that battlefield 4 was not obtaining enough fps when I watched footage of it on YouTube on a system with a GTX 1060 and a high-end CPU like an i7 6700K. On a high-end rig with the same GPU, people are getting 90-100 fps on average, which is significantly higher than mine.

V-sync: ON, 1080p max settings, Dying Light

36 fps min, 63 fps max, 56 fps average

The game flowed well. I was able to achieve a playable frame rate even with V-sync turned on. When I turned off V-sync, the minimum frame rate dropped back into the 30s due to the cpu, but the maximum frame rate increased to above 100. Overall, the average frame rate was 70+, but the gameplay was jerky and stuttering. That’s why I had no choice except to turn on the V-sync. When I watched gameplay of Dying Light on other high-end systems, I saw that it was mainly gpu demanding, yet I was getting excellent performance here.

TXAA, 1080p extreme settings, Fallout 4

Minimum frame rate is 31 frames per second, maximum frame rate is 63 frames per second, and average frame rate is 48 frames per second.

This game requires a lot of processing power, and the i3 2120 was obviously bottlenecking it. Although the average frame rates are adequate for gaming, seeing this on a GTX 1060 was disappointing. With i5 processors and the GTX 970, which is slower than the GTX 1060, people are achieving greater over 70 frames per second on average. I3 was causing the gameplay to stall once again.

V-sync: OFF, 1080 maximum settings, Tomb Raider 2013

Minimum frame rate is 49 frames per second, maximum frame rate is 79 frames per second, and average frame rate is 63 frames per second.

Everything in the parameters was maxed up, even the Hair quality. This is a clearly gpu-intensive game, and the i3 performed well. It’s completely playable, and the score never dropped below 50. I benchmarked it in-game using fraps, like I did with all previous games, and didn’t feel the need to utilize the in-game benchmark tool since it gave me an average frame rate of 85, which is much higher than in-game.

1080p extreme settings, V-sync enabled in The Witcher 3.

ON: Nvidia Hairworks: 34 fps min, 49 fps max, 42 fps average
Nvidia Hairworks is a company that creates hair. Off: 41 fps min, 69 fps max, 54 fps average

It exceeded my expectations. We all know Witcher 3 is a CPU-intensive game, and I can’t expect to achieve 60+ average frames per second with an i3 2120. With Hairworks turned off, I was getting 50+ average frames per second with V-sync enabled.

Conclusion and Result:

The outcome was as anticipated, and I was unable to fully use the gtx 1060’s capabilities. But I was curious whether individuals with earlier generation CPUs, such as the i5 3470 or i7 2600, would receive greater performance than the i3s if they upgraded to a high-end card like this. I performed this upgrade, but I wouldn’t suggest it to anybody since you don’t want to reduce the power of your card. Invest in a decent CPU before upgrading to a high-end graphics card. i3 processors can only support graphics cards up to the GTX 960, so pairing one with a GTX 980 equivalent is not a smart idea. However, if you want to update your CPU as well, acquiring one should be no issue.




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The i3 2120 is a good budget gaming computer.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”Will an i3 2120 bottleneck GTX 1650?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”
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Yes, a GTX 1060 can run the game at 60fps with high settings.”}}]}

Frequently Asked Questions

Is i3 2120 good for gaming?

The i3 2120 is a good budget gaming computer.

Will an i3 2120 bottleneck GTX 1650?

The i3 2120 is not a bottleneck for the GTX 1650.

Can a GTX 1060 run control?

Yes, a GTX 1060 can run the game at 60fps with high settings.

Related Tags

  • 1060 6gb
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Holly is the smartest person you will ever know (Or so she tells us lol). She's a gamer by heart, and an author by soul. Writing for the website g15tools is a dream come true for her - she loves being able to share her thoughts and insights with others who love gaming as much as she does. When she's not writing or gaming, Holly can be found spending time with her friends and family.