Best APUs for UHD 1080p Gaming in 2021

Best APUs for UHD 1080p Gaming in 2021

Gone are the days when your PC needed a CPU built-in Intel. Things have changed; everyday innovations are starting to come into our lives, and technology has become advanced to make life more comfortable and interesting than before.

You got it right..! To make the competition tougher and build better developments for Intel CPUs, the AMD, in 2011, came up with the introduction of APU as an alternative to CPU. The APU is an abbreviation of Accelerated Processing Unit and consists of both CPU and GPU cores on the same processor.

That’s why, to make things clear for you, we have compiled a list of the best APUs that you can get in this year. This article now covers almost 6 APUs that are excellent in their performance. But first, see the answer to the frequently asked question.

Now Let’s have a closer look at the best APUs by AMD for gaming as well as other tasks

  1. AMD Ryzen 5 3400G – Best for Mediocre gaming
  2. AMD Athlon 200GE – Best for entry level gaming
  3. AMD Ryzen 3 3200G – Perfect for AAA-titles
  4. AMD Ryzen 5 2400G – Best APU for HTPC and VR
  5. AMD Ryzen 3 2200G – Cheapest Mid Range AMD APU
  6. AMD A12-9800 – Best A-Series APU

List of Best APUs by AMD for gaming

1. AMD Ryzen 5 3400G

Best AMD APU for gaming

AMD Ryzen 5 2400G
Specifications
APU ModelAMD Ryzen 5 3400G
CPU Cores / Threads4/8
GPU Cores11
Base Clock3.9 GHz
Graphics Clock1.4 GHz
UnlockedYes
TDP65W
Reasons to Buy
  • Overall Best APU for the money
  • VEGA 11 graphics
  • Compatible with 300/400 series AM4 motherboards
  • Offers 30fps on most AAA games titles
Reasons to Avoid
  • Needs Bios update for older motherboards

Among the latest AMD APUs, the Ryzen 5 3400G is actually the best APU for gaming and video streaming. The processor comes with the power combined with advanced Radeon graphics for excellent gaming performance and productivity solutions. Due to its impressive gaming performance and credibility, the processor absolutely deserves first place.

The processor already features RX VEGA 11 graphics that offer quite powerful speed, and you won’t need to buy an expensive graphics card after this deal. Besides, it comes with a clock speed of 3.7 GHz, which can be boosted by overclocking up to 4.2 GHz, which is really a big improvement in APUs. Besides, the iGPU that the 3400G comes with operates at 1,400MHz, which is surprisingly a bit faster than the previous model, 2400G.

The performance and graphics potential enable the processor to run the AAA game titles without a problem. But unlike a combination of premium CPU + graphics card, which offers a frame rate beyond 60 frames per second, this processor fairly lags and offers speed at 30 frames per second.

The silver lining of this processor is that it is now equipped with 4 cores, 8 threads, and an exclusive 6MB of cache. The latest feature that 3400G comes with is its auto overclocking by the built-in metal TIM powered by AMD’s precision boost drive. The chip, in addition, has AMD’s CPU cooler to prevent overheating issues.

Overall, priced under $150, the AMD 3400G is worth buying APU, which you can use to make an excellent above-level gaming desktop. The core has an upgradable socket which means you won’t need to worry about upgrading your machine afterward.


2. AMD Athlon 200GE

Best for entry level gaming

AMD Athlon 200GE
Specifications
APU ModelAMD Athlon 200GE
CPU Cores / Threads2/4
GPU Cores3
Base Clock3.2 GHz
Graphics Clock1 GHz
UnlockedNo
TDP35W
Reasons to Buy
  • Solid performance for entry-level gamers
  • Great value for the money
  • Ultra-low-power requirement
Reasons to Avoid
  • Not unlocked
  • Not as powerful as other processors

From day one, AMD has been working to provide inexpensive products that can provide the same performance as premium products. Still, the company sticks to its plans and never disappointed its loyal customers. In the same lineup, the company has introduced its new masterpiece, “the Athlon 200GE”. Ranked as the best APU under $100, the AMD Athlon 200GE is an affordable yet the most competent processor in this price range.

Of the most promising features the processor comes with is its latest Vega graphics. Admittedly it has only three Vega cores; the processor is still an excellent addition for beginners to boost up the gaming performance at a minimum cost.

Don’t waste time and money if you want to compare Athlon 200GE with other high-end APUs by AMD, as the price is the only concern for this processor. However, if we compare it with Intel’s processors in the same price range, the little boy will definitely outperform its competitors at a considerable margin, let alone Intel’s Celeron models.

Besides, it is also far better than some of the AMD APUs, such as A10 that costs higher than this model. Since it is best for beginners, the processor features an AM4 socket, and you can upgrade to the Ryzen at any time in the future without any hiccups.

Performance-wise, the AMD Athlon 200GE boasts running eSports and 720p gaming experience in its full capacity without getting overheated due to its near-silent cooler included in the package. Besides, the processor lets you surf the internet and stream videos available in HD 720p.

Overall, the AMD Athlon 200GE is the cheapest APU for entry-level gamers looking for the best combination of price-performance ratio. The processor offers fast responsiveness and enables you to upgrade it to Ryzen in the future; that really is the biggest advantage.


3. AMD Ryzen 3 3200G

Perfect APU for AAA-titles

AMD Ryzen 3 3200G
Specifications
APU ModelAMD Ryzen 3 3200G
CPU Cores / Threads4/4
GPU Cores3
Base Clock3.6 GHz
Graphics Clock1 GHz
UnlockedYes
TDP65W
Reasons to Buy
  • Affordable APU with VEGA 8 graphics
  • Compatible with 300/400 series motherboards
  • Offers 30fps on AAA games titles
Reasons to Avoid
  • Needs a powerful RAM to run in full capacity

The next powerful processor on our list is none other than AMD Ryzen 3 3200G. Like its sister processor 3400G, the 3200G offers to play AAA-game titles at 30fps speed.

The processor is overclocking-enabled and offers more clocking than 2200G. Built with the 3rd Gen Ryzen series, the processor meets performance and affordability criteria in every sense. The VEGA 8 graphics and higher CPU clock make it even better than previous APUs built by AMD. The combined power of overclocking and graphics truly improved the gaming experience, and that’s why the processor can perform under stress while running AAA-game titles.

The only caveat in this beginner-level processor is the lack of multithreading capability, which is only available in dedicated CPUs by AMD like Ryzen 9 3900X, which is discussed at the end. But the good thing is that the processor comes with its own Wraith Stealth CPU cooler that, besides cooling the processor at a noticeable rate, saves a few more bucks for you.

Overall, capable of running high-quality games, this small, affordable, and CPU+GPU combo is really best for money. Though the APUs are new in the market and lack most of the advanced features, they have shown tremendous potential for growth in the future, and this is what we are seeing in new APUs being introduced.


4. AMD Ryzen 5 2400G

Best for HTPC and VR

AMD Ryzen 5 2400G
Specifications
APU ModelAMD Ryzen 5 2400G
CPU Cores / Threads4/8
GPU Cores11
Base Clock3.6 GHz
Graphics Clock1.4 GHz
UnlockedYes
TDP65W
Reasons to Buy
  • Powerful APU for beginners
  • Best integrated graphics available
  • Quad-core CPU
Reasons to Avoid
  • Single-threaded performance
  • Limited graphics capability

Going down further, the next impressive APU on our list is Ryzen 5 2400. Though not as powerful as other APUs like 3400G, it still can offer a decent price-performance ratio and works as a good APU for gaming purposes.

Before the release of its latest version AMD Ryzen 5 3400G, the 2400G was considered the best processor for the money. Granted, the APU comes with 3rd Gen processors, which means its graphics performance against Intel is still unbeatable in this price range. The processor allows playing the games at reasonably good graphics of 720p in medium to high and 1080p in low to medium resolution settings.

Like its predecessors, the processor comes with Vega 11 graphics, 4 cores, and 8 threads. Also, it features the same Cooler for a thermal solution. The best part of this processor is that it is VR-ready APU unlocked for overclocking and equipped with Radeon FreeSync technology.

The only downside is its limited graphics performance which cannot be increased. If money isn’t an issue, you may go up and get the 3400G.

Overall, the 2400G is the decent choice in affordable APUs solutions, which offers nice performance for newbies.

5. AMD Ryzen 3 2200G

Cheapest Mid Range AMD APU

AMD Ryzen 3 2200G APU
Specifications
APU ModelAMD Ryzen 3 2200G
Threads4/4
GPU Cores8
Base Clock3.5 GHz
Graphics Clock1.1 GHz
UnlockedYes
TDP65W
Reasons to Buy
  • Good performance
  • Overclocking enabled
  • Cheaper option
Reasons to Avoid
  • Issue with new games
  • Not as fast as the newer models

The AMD Ryzen 3 2200G is the fourth most powerful APU available online. Just like the Ryzen 3 3200G, the 2200G is also equipped with an 8 Vega graphics card, a bit lower than 2400G, but in gaming performance, it is equivalent to the GT 1030.

The thing worth noticing about this processor is that it offers much better performance than its competitor Core i3-8100, which is pricier than this model. It means you will be getting performance equal to the i3 processor without wasting a lot of money. And, of course, the processor comes with a Stealth cooler.

Since the processor has become obsolete due to introducing the newer Ryzen 5 series, it still is competent. But we’ll first recommend the newer generation processor, which is available at a similar price. However, if you still think that the old id gold, then it might be the best option for you to choose.

Like the newer versions, it is unlocked to get the maximum overclocking out of it, and when a good RAM is working with it, its performance is awe-inspiring.

Go for this option if you plan to upgrade your GPU in the future; otherwise, the newer APUs are the most appropriate option to save money and time.


6. AMD A12-9800

Best A-Series APU

AMD A12-9800
Specifications
APU ModelAMD A12-9800 APU
Cores / Threads4/8
GPU Cores8
Base Clock3.8 GHz
Graphics Clock1.1 GHz
UnlockedNo
TDP65W
Reasons to Buy
  • Impressive performance
  • Best A-series APU
Reasons to Avoid
  • Lacks cooler
  • Dated architecture

AMD A12-9800 APU is part of the A-series APUs, which comes with Quad-core CPU and Radeon R7 graphics. The good part of this APU is its turbo clock speed of 3.8GHz, which can be overclocked up to 4.2 GHz. The GPU features 8 cores and offers a clock speed of 1.108GHz.

The APU can run all the older titles and most of the newer titles as per its specifications. The display performance offered by it is 720p-1080p, depending on the frame rates available. Overall, the APU is worth the money, considering what you will get in this range.

Unlike the G-series, the A-series lacks cooler with it, which is sadly the biggest disadvantage in these cards. If you have questions regarding APUs, don’t forget to read the FAQs about APUs to get the right answer.

APU vs CPU – Which is better?

As already discussed, the APU is a short form of Accelerated Processing Unit. The processors built by AMD are actually a perfect combination of CPU+GPU on the same chip. They are the true combination of two and offer both CPU and graphics processors at the same price. Interestingly, Intel also offers integrated graphics in some of its Core-series; they are not as perfect as AMD’s APUs.

AMD Ryzen APU

The caveat, however, is that the jack of all trades can’t compete against the master of a single trade. This is the reason, although you get two features in one place, you won’t be able to get the best out of it—neither in terms of CPU nor GPU. Granted, the processors can’t even compete with their competitors; they can still offer a better price-performance ratio which is a great advantage for some gamers who need affordable processors with both features.

For the entry-level gamers who don’t want to waste a lot of money in buying a dedicated CPU and a GPU, the APU can offer something good in half of the money.

Terms To Know

Clock Speed refers to the average speed of the CPU measured in GHz. It is worth mentioning that most of the APUs are built with Zen Architecture that gives good speed with its single core. Up to now, the Zen architecture employed in APUs has been a good update.

You must be clear in this point that the more cores your APU/CPU is built with, the better the APU/CPU will perform in multitasking projects. That is to say; you’ll better be able to handle multiple tasks with multicore CPUs. Besides, some graphics and video rendering applications usually require multicore CPUs to function effectively. But, normally, most of the standard games require a single core to work.

Think of it as additional virtual cores. I mean to say, Physically, there is one core working, but that one core acts as two to handle multiple tasks and processes. The same case applies here: more threads mean more capability of multitasking.

This actually includes the GPU or Graphical Processing unit. In APUs, the graphics start with Vega 8 and go up to Vega 11 available till now.

Things to consider while buying the Best APUs for gaming

Choosing the best APUs for gaming is the most intimidating task when you plan to build a gaming pc for you, isn’t it? Well, that’s true, and there is no doubt about it. You have to be careful before going forward to the final decision, trust me.

Have you ever wondered how AMD Ryzen 5 has amazed the users with its unique features and high-grade construction? Believe it or not but it has taken the best position in the market right now. But AMD Athlon is also no more than an exception, seriously. Some high-level models are available to help you choose the best AMD APU that suits you perfectly.

But wait! Wait! Isn’t it look daunting to choose the one? Well, we are here to cope up with the situation with our detailed guide. You will find it comfortable to choose the one that suits all your needs reliably. So without wasting any time, let’s get right into our guide.

Consider clock speed

When you plan to get a high-performance APU, the first thing that triggers your mind is the clock speed. You have to consider it if you want to enjoy hardcore gaming, and it is essential even for professional gamers.

Quite simply, the rough APU speed per task is generally measured in GHz. And guess what? All APUs feature Zen architecture, which is undoubtedly great to provide you with high-grade performance and ensures versatility.

Moreover, the pretty rugged single-core performance is no more than a treat for many users, and it makes APUs a top choice of users. Whatever is your choice, make sure you choose an excellent APU processor meeting all your needs and desires.

Cores

Believe it or not, the best APU brand offers lots of cores to its users for effective working. Sounds impressive, right? Cores are essential when considering which APU will be the best to provide you high-level gaming adventure.

What’s next, by the way? The APU performs better when there are many cores attached, and it performs multiple applications and multitasking using several cores. You will get amazed by the core of the high-grade feature it provides to the users.

Moreover, different models come with different cores allowing the users to choose the useful one in all measures, right? It ensures the performance your APU will perform, especially during gaming.

Many models utilize one core, but some offer multiple cores, which feature many content creations allowing you to choose the best APU for gaming.

Threads

Another most considerable thing is the threads present on your APUs. They are vital as they profoundly affect gaming to a much greater extent. You have to be careful while choosing the best APU for Skyrim.

Sometimes threads may be accounted as virtual cores and are considered additional too. But when there is only one core, the thread works as two cores, especially when handling processes and different tasks. Almost all models come with threads for effective functioning, and you will get the best versions available here in our list.

Graphics

Finally, the graphics are worth considering when buying a premium APU to get incredibly high gaming levels. Have you heard of these graphics before? Well, let us tell you in detail! Graphics are vital whenever we talk about APU.

From VEGA 8 to Vega 11, there are various graphics on different APUs and are available on our list. You will get the ideal one for you, trust me. Ensure that you get comparable graphics that works effectively with your Pc and enable you to get the most awaited experience ever.

Budget

To be honest, a well-designed and fully-featured APU offers high performance costs relatively higher than some regular APUs. Well, that’s true. You have to be careful when considering the price. Never buy a model featuring a much higher price tag.

Despite buying something costly, buy an APU with all the necessary features at a reasonable price. You will get the best APU for the money if you consider all the essential features carefully. 

What’s the catch? Keep a balance between cost and quality before buying an APU for your next gaming adventure. Buy something that won’t make your pocket go deep down without compromising the design and characteristics.

Conclusion

After this whole discussion, if you are confused about: which is the best APU for gaming? It depends on the purpose, the money you are going to invest, and the type you will get. Overall the AMD’s Ryzen 5 3400G is actually the best APU for gaming and video editing. However, if money is still an issue, you may go for the lower option like Ryzen 2400G. In A-series, we found only one APU, AMD A12-9800; others in this series are obsolete and not worth the money. Now it is your personal preference which one you are going to get. Give your opinions and feedback in the comment section below. We will respond to the opinions and answer the questions you ask.


Share post on
Mathew Bradford
By Mathew Bradford

Hey! Mathew Bradford Here, A proud member of GamingExpert Team. I love playing games with new gaming gadgets. Our team is here to help you find the best gaming products, reviews of videos games and to help you decide which one is best for your. You can contact me if you need further assistance.



Gaming Expert is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.