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Best CPU for GTX 970

Asad Malik Asad Malik
Best CPU for GTX 970

If you want a processor that fits all the criteria that we look for in a processor, such as performance, cores, and price, then Ryzen 5 3600 is the processor that ticks all the criteria in the checklist. Based on the Zen 2 architecture the processor is a powerhouse that will perform with ease no matter what you throw at it.

The processor comes with 6 cores and 12 threads and has a base clock of 3.6 GHz and a boost clock of 4.2 GHz which is more than enough to perform any given task whether it’s for gaming or productivity. AMD brought the big guns to the battle when they released this processor to the market and it has received quite a lot of positive views from the community. We saw substantial performance gains over the previous-gen processors and it even supports being compatible with older motherboards, so you might not need to upgrade your board.

You can pair the processor with a mid-range B450 motherboard, or the more premium X570 one as well, to unlock the full potential of the PCIe 4.0 lanes. It is one of the best-performing processors in games and it has locked its place as one of the best processors that you can get for pairing it up with a GTX 970. The GPU will perform to its maximum ability and won’t be held back by the processor, as it is one of the best in the market right now.

Included in this guide:

1 AMD Ryzen 5 2600 AMD Ryzen 5 2600 Read More See On Amazon
2 Intel Core i7-4790K Intel Core i7-4790K Read More See On Amazon
3 AMD Ryzen 5 1400 AMD Ryzen 5 1400 Read More See On Amazon
4 Intel Core i5 8600k Intel Core i5 8600k Read More See On Amazon
5 Intel Core i5-9600k Intel Core i5-9600k Read More See On Amazon

The Best CPU for GTX 970 - Our Top Picks

  1. AMD Ryzen 5 2600
  2. Intel Core i7-4790K
  3. AMD Ryzen 5 1400
  4. Intel Core i5 8600k
  5. Intel Core i5-9600k

Table of ContentsShow

Best CPU for GTX 970 Reviews

The Pros:

  • huge step forward in performance section
  • has a backward compatibility with motherboards
  • has an improved value proposition

The Cons:

  • needs higher end thermal solution
  • only 20$ cheaper if compared with Ryzen 5 2500x

We will start by taking a look at the AMD Ryzen 5 2600 CPU as our starting point. With this CPU, you will be able to get a fairly affordable price and this will be one of the fastest processors to pair with GTX 900 Series GPUs.

The CPU can be overclocked to as much as 3.9GHz by using AMD’s stock CPU cooler right out of the box using AMD’s stock CPU cooler. During our testing of the CPU, we found that it performed very similarly to a Core i7 8700K, however, we found that there was a bit less headroom for overclocking compared to a Core i7 8700K.

It should be noted that AMD 5 2600 has excellent thermodynamics when it comes to heat dissipation compared to other CPUs in this lineup. If you push the processor to its maximum speed, there will not be a drastic increase in the temperature of the system despite the fact that you are pushing the CPU to its limits.

If the Ryzen 5 2600 is overclocked at 3.8 GHz, the temperatures can fluctuate between 50 and 60 degrees Celsius, depending on the workload the computer is under. Since you do get a stock cooler included in the box, there is no need to spend extra money on getting one if you already have the stock one, so there is no need to spend extra money on one if you already have it.

As far as raw performance goes, the Ryzen 5 2600 is a good performer, and it does not disappoint when it comes to the performance it delivers. You will not be disappointed with the CPU when it comes to gaming or any other general workload tasks that you may encounter in the future.

We were able to play a few games with the combination of this processor and the GTX 970 chip, such as Far Cry 5, WoW, GTA V, Fortnite, and so on, with no problem whatsoever. Most of the time, we were able to achieve over 60 frames per second with all settings pushed up to the max.

There is no doubt that this Ryzen 5 2600 is a great deal for those who are looking for a high-end CPU with decent overclocking potential and who are on a tight budget, but still want a powerful processor with decent overclocking potential.

As per PC-builds research, according to the benchmark tests conducted on the Ryzen 5 2600 and the GTX 970 graphics card in terms of performance, the Ryzen 5 2600 has a smaller bottleneck when compared to the GTX 970 graphics card.

Therefore, if you are playing AAA titles, you are likely to experience a minimal drop in FPS when playing them. Though the GTX 970 does come with a downside, as it comes with a lower video memory of only 4GB, which can mean a slight performance drop for some of the newer AAA and Esports titles.


The Pros:

  • excellent performance
  • NGPTIM
  • Runs cool

The Cons:

  • no improvements in graphics section
  • has a good overclocking variability

The Intel Core i7-4790K is a beast of a CPU that was made for older architecture GPUs such as the GTX 970, whilst the Core i7-4790K is a beast of a CPU from the past, this was one of the most popular overclockers' processors back then when it was so popular.

As long as the proper overclocking techniques are used, there is no doubt that the i7-4790K can be overclocked to extreme speeds if the right overclocking techniques are used. The quad-core CPU was one of Intel’s highest-end processors at the time, and it was also one of the most expensive things you could buy for a gaming computer during that era, so this was one of Intel’s most expensive processors.

Therefore, it is now possible to get CPUs that are more powerful than the Core i7-4790K, but they will not be able to match up well with the GTX 970 since it is an older GPU. You will find that this computer comes with a powerful quad-core CPU clocked at 4.0 GHz out of the box, so you will be able to get started right away. Since these are still hard to find in older Intel chips, it’s quite hard to find these kinds of specs in modern-day chips from the company because they are still hard to find in older ones.

The i7-4790K is also able to handle GTX 970 in addition to having a higher base clock speed than the earlier i7-4790K, making it an excellent choice when it comes to gaming when it comes to that CPU. Aside from that, if the GTX 970 didn’t have a lower VRAM level than the i7-4790K, then there would have been a deadly combination of the i7-4790K and GTX 970 when it came to PC gaming with the GTX 970.

It is likely that this CPU will be a suitable upgrade for you considering you come from something like the i5 4690K, which is quite an old processor. If you use a decent CPU cooler like the Noctua NH D15, the processor temperature is going to peak around 75 degrees Celsius, and that is exactly what you should expect from a CPU cooler like the Noctua NH D15.

There is no doubt that this is a great CPU for gaming and working with other applications like Blender, Photoshop, DaVinci, etc, among others. If you are concerned about the chipset support, you should consider the fact that the chipset supports an older Z97 chipset. In the current day and age, it is true that it is becoming more difficult to find motherboards with Z97 chipsets online and they are much more difficult to come by.


The Pros:

  • amazing performance
  • budget friendly
  • can produce more cores to the mainstream

The Cons:

  • doesn't come with an RGB cooler
  • not recommended for long run

When you’re moving from the FX-Series to the Ryzen platform and you’re looking for a reliable CPU to use, the Ryzen 5 1400 is one of the best CPUs to get. The processors in the FX-Series are a great upgrade over the processors in this processor. A low-budget CPU such as this can be paired with older GPUs such as the GTX 970 or 980 to give you the best performance.

A Ryzen 5 1400 with a GTX 970 card played and streamed PUBG at 1080p 30 frames per second with an average frame rate of 75 frames per second. In terms of overclocking, since the processor is clocked at 3.2 GHz by default, there’s very small room for you to go beyond that.

Thus, if you are an extreme gamer, this CPU is not suitable for you. There is no doubt that it’s a good CPU for gamers who are just starting out and are looking for a low-cost gaming PC to build.

Moreover, there isn’t a huge price difference between this CPU and the ones in the Ryzen 2000 Series. There is a price difference between the Ryzen 5 1400 and Ryzen 5 2600, with the former costing a bit less and the latter costing just over $200.

However, you can get two more cores and 12 threads for a bit more cash if you spend a bit more money. Even though the Ryzen 5 1400 has four cores and eight threads, it has enough juice to handle modern games at 1080p settings even if you have 4 cores and 8 threads on it. 

When it comes to building a gaming PC for the first time, Ryzen 5 1400 is one of the best choices for your money if you are just starting out in this business.

A CPU with a TDP of 65W will produce less heat than a CPU with a TDP of 100W, so it will run cooler under heavy workloads. You may also be able to cool down this CPU by opting for a low-budget CPU cooler as well.

The last thing to note is that when you pair a GTX 970 GPU with 1080p settings, you can expect a bottleneck of 0.19%. If you are on a tight budget, I would recommend installing the Ryzen 5 1400 CPU with the GTX 970 graphics card instead of the GTX 980.


The Pros:

  • unlocked multiplayer
  • 6 cores
  • amazing performance

The Cons:

  • needs heatsink
  • doesnt have hyperthreading

With a good cooling solution, you will be able to get the most out of the Core i5 8600K even though it doesn’t come with stock fans. If you purchase a good additional cooler, you can get the most out of this processor. There is no question that this is one of those processors that most people will need at some point in their lives. As well as being fast, it is great for gaming as well. There is no doubt that this chip has the power that you will need for intense gaming sessions.

Furthermore, you can easily overclock it by pairing it with a good motherboard as well, if you pair it with a suitable motherboard. Considering the ease of installation, fast & reliable performance, and incredible power, this is a great buy. There is no doubt that Intel’s 7th and 8th generation of CPUs are the best because they feature more multi-threaded functionality compared to the previous generation.

The i5-8600K is still one of the best CPUs as of today if you look at it from the standpoint of pure and fast performance. Despite the fact that it does not feature HyperThreading, the processor provides excellent performance both in productivity applications and in games as well. Because it does not come with stock fans, an additional cooler is required, since it does not come with stock fans.

There is no need for any special installation skills, and it does not overheat. On the other hand, overclocking may result in more heat being generated. This can be one of the best processors you can choose for a build on a medium budget. This processor is more powerful than most on the market because of the 3.6GHz base frequency, the powerful cores, and the strong threads.

I would describe this processor as being a powerful and fast processor that does not consume much power unless you overclock it. You can unlock all the cores of your CPU without overclocking and be able to achieve almost the same performance without overclocking. For the medium-budget segment, it is the best 8th generation Intel CPU on the market. It is for this reason that we considered it to be the best processor for GTX 970.


The Pros:

  • single threaded performance
  • best for midranges
  • good value

The Cons:

  • has no additional cooler
  • needs z series motherboard to overclock.

This is the last Best GTX 970 processor that has been included in this list. One of the most impressive things about this CPU is the fact that it can easily handle 4K resolution. It performs great despite not having any installation problems, despite not having any installation issues.

 For a CPU to stay cool, a proper cooling system should be paired with it, as well as a reliable thermal paste application in order to prevent any overheating issues.

In terms of mid-range gaming CPUs, the Intel Core i5 9600K fits perfectly into the category of the Intel Core i5. The processor must use its six cores to receive the tweaking of the hardware in order to receive the tweaking of the hardware. As a result, the performance improves a little bit over time as a result of the process. The Core i5 9600K is a powerful gaming processor that does not impose any restrictions on any of your games. 

Besides the CoffeeLake architecture, it is also compatible with Intel Optane memory, which is based on the CoffeeLake architecture. Having a good cooling system is the most important thing, although you can also install a cooler aftermarket if necessary. 

As far as its price is concerned, it is the best deal for its qualities such as being easy to install, fast, and reliable. There is no need for you to worry about overclocking the CPU with this device since the multiplier is unlocked. As well as that, it is also easily overclocked on all four cores up to a maximum of 5GHz.

There is no doubt that the Core i5 9600K was made specifically for gamers and streamers. Overclockers will have no doubts about the device’s ability to produce excellent results. The gaming outputs and performance of this device are one of the best in the industry. 

This makes the users addicted to it for days on end. You will need to pair it with a Z-series motherboard in order to achieve satisfactory overclocking results unless you pair it with a Z-series motherboard.


Frequently Asked Questions

Can GTX 970 run 144hz?

The GPU is definitely good enough for 144Hz screens. At low/medium settings, you will probably get around 100 frames per second, but it will feel decently smooth most of the time as well.

What's better GTX 970 or 1060?

A comparison of GTX 1060 vs. GTX 970 from a gaming performance point of view will reveal that GTX 1060 offers a much higher level of performance than GTX 970 in terms of gaming performance as compared to its predecessor.

How good is a GTX 970?

A high-end Maxwell-based graphics card such as the GeForce GTX 970 is one of Nvidia’s latest top-of-the-line graphics cards and offers excellent value as one of Nvidia’s top-of-the-range cards. The GTX 980 has 13 SMMs (equivalent to 1,664 CUDA cores) and the same memory specifications, but it has a lower TDP of only 148 watts.

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Asad Malik
Asad Malik

My name is Asad Malik, and I have done my intermediate in Computer Science, and I really enjoy finding out about the newest tech products, buying them, and writing reviews on them.

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