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Best CPU for RTX 2080 (AMD, Intel, Gaming)

What CPU is good for RTX 2080?

We choose the RTX 2080 as our GPU for today as it is an absolute beast when it comes to performance. Whether we talk about gaming or professional use, the RTX 2080 has a good price vs. performance ratio.

Moreover, it is one of the better graphic cards from NVIDIA and requires a powerful processor that can take its performance to the next level. So, we listed some of the best processors Intel and AMD have to offer that can work well with this video adapter.

A good CPU for RTX 2080 is one that can match its performance and avoid bottlenecking. A bottleneck on RTX 2080 will occur when low end CPU limits the performance of another component, resulting in lower frame rates and reduced gaming experience. 

The RTX 2080 is a high-end graphics card that can handle 1440p and 4K gaming at high settings, so it needs a powerful CPU to keep up with it.

A CPU will bottleneck a 2080 if it is too slow or too weak to keep up with the high-end graphics card.
Whether a CPU will bottleneck a 2080 depends on the resolution and framerate you are targeting. In general, the following CPUs are likely to bottleneck a 2080:

  • Intel Core i5-9400F or lower at 1080p and high framerates
  • Intel Core i7-7700K or lower at 1440p and high framerates
  • AMD Ryzen 5 3600 or lower at 4K and high frame rates

The RTX 2080 requires a high-powered processor that grants the customer an ultimate gaming experience. We’ve review the top 6 CPUs that you can pair with RTX 2080.

Our Recommended list of the Best CPUs for RTX 2080

  1. Intel Core i5-13600K : Overall Best CPU for RTX 2080
  2. AMD Ryzen 9 5900X
  3. Intel Core i5-12600K
  4. AMD Ryzen 7 5700G
  5. Intel Core i7-11700K
  6. Intel Core i7-10700KF

CPU Requirements for RTX 2080

  • Minimum 6 Cores
  • At least 12 Threads
  • Minimal DDR4 memory
  • Boost rate of 4.2 GHz at least
  • PCIe 3.0 minimal
  • 16 MB Cache minimum

RTX 2080 VS. GTX 1080 Ti 

  • Turing vs. Pascal Architecture
  • 1515 MHz vs. 1480 MHz Core Clock Speed
  • 1800 MHz vs. 1582 MHz Boost Clock
  • 215W vs. 250W TDP
  • GDDR6 vs. GDDR5X Memory Type
  • 2 vs. 1 Fan Count
  • 3 vs. 3 DisplayPort

1- Best CPU for RTX 2080 : Intel Core i5-13600K

Intel Core i5-13600K Desktop Processor

Our first choice for the overall Best CPU for RTX 2080 is the Intel is the Core i5-13600K, which contains 16 cores and 20 threads. Built on Raptor Lake architecture, it can work perfectly with the RTX 2080 video adapter.

Starting at a 3.5 GHz base clock, it obtains the peak boost clock of 5.1 GHz, which is enough for swift gameplay. Furthermore, the unlocked multiplier improves gaming and other heavy tasks.

UHD Graphics 770 model of graphics is integrated that enhances the graphics of videos and games. A 125W TDP is calculated in this component, so the need for a CPU cooler is there.

Both DDR4 and DDR5 memory types are supported by this processor so that the user can also use their existing motherboard. Moreover, if the user needs a new motherboard, 600 and 700 chipset-based ones are the way to go. LGA 1700 socket should be available in the motherboard so that the Core i5-13600K can fit into the user’s system.

Games like Age of Empires IV and Battlefield V gave 100+ fps at 1440p resolution, resulting in clear and accurate gameplay. In addition, PCIe 5.0 support is provided that performs twice as well as PCIe 4.0. Finally, the Core i5-13600K cost is quite reasonable compared to its opponents, making it a great choice for people with a budget.


We take the Core i5-13400 against the Core i5-13600K as they have alike traits. Though the 13400 processor is cheaper, has low TDP, and has a bundled cooler, the 13600K performs better, has 4 more cores and 4 more threads, and has higher CPU and boost clock rates.


  • LGA 1700 socket
  • DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 support
  • Budget-friendly


  • Requires a CPU cooler
  • Consumes high power

2- AMD Ryzen 9 5900X

AMD Ryzen 9 5900X Desktop Processor

The Ryzen 9 5900X is the best AMD CPU for RTX 2080, it has several notable attributes, like 12 core count and 24 threads. Built using the Zen 3 architecture.

Base frequency starts at 3.7 GHz and achieves a boost clock rate of 4.8 GHz, which is great for a great gaming experience. PCIe 4.0 support is provided in this component, which improves the bandwidth speed. A TDP of 105W is measured in this processor, so some cooling mechanism needs to be used with this system.

A maximum of 128 GB RAM with DDR4 memory is granted in this gaming CPU, reaching the highest memory speed of 3200 MHz. In addition, an L3 cache of 64 MB is provided for increased data retrieval rates for a swift working system.

To fit inside the motherboard, it needs the AM4 socket; X570 and B550 chipset-based motherboards are preferred with this processor. Giving 100+ fps in games like Rainbow Six: Siege and Hitman: Absolution, it is perfect for professional gaming.

AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Premium technology is supported by this processor, which is great for people working in the Virtual Reality field. However, the Ryzen 9 5900X is one expensive piece of equipment with all new features. Moreover, it is perfect for gaming as well as professional work like photography and videography.


We compare the Ryzen 9 3900X against the Ryzen 9 5900X since they have homogenous attributes. However, the Ryzen 9 5900X is a better choice as it is cheaper, has better core and thread performance, and has a higher Max turbo clock frequency than the 3900X processor. 


  • Excellent gaming performance 
  • AM4 socket
  • Low TDP 
  • DDR4 support
  • Unlocked multiplier
  • PCIe 4.0 support


  • Requires CPU cooler
  • Expensive

3- Intel Core i5-12600K

Intel Core i5-12600K Desktop Processor

Another CPU from Intel that you can pair with RTX 2080 is the Core i5-12600K since it has 10 cores and 16 threads, all built using the Alder Lake architecture.

Beginning at a 3.7 GHz base clock, it can reach the peak boost clock of 4.9 GHz, which is great for smooth gameplay. A Built-in UHD Graphics controller is present that improves the video quality and graphics. Since a TDP of 125W is measured in this component, some cooling mechanism is needed to lower the heat levels.

For fast data transfer rates, both DDR5 and DDR4 memory types are compatible with this device. Furthermore, a maximum of 128 GB memory size is allowed by this processor, which can reach a peak speed of 4800 MHz.

Intel grants an L3 cache of 16 MB, increasing data retrieval rates as frequent commands are kept here. LGA 1700 socket must be present in the motherboard, so the user needs to have the appropriate motherboard. Well-known  games like Far Cry: New Dawn and Witcher III gave 100+ fps on 1440p resolution. 

Whereas games like F1 2020 at 2160p resolution gave 100+ fps, making it a great choice for e-sports people. Furthermore, the Core i5-12600K comes at a competitive price, resulting in being one of the good choice CPU for RTX 2080.


For this task, we consider the Intel Core i5-12400 against the Core i6-12600K since they share similar features. Although the former CPU has low TDP and is cheaper, the 12600K has more cores and threads, performs much better than the 12400, and has higher CPU and Max turbo clock rates.


  • Exceptional performance in gaming
  • DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 support
  • Overclockable


  •  High power consumption

4- AMD Ryzen 7 5700G

AMD Ryzen 7 5700G Desktop Processor

Moving on, AMD’s Ryzen 7 5700G is one of the most well-regarded processors as it has several notable features. Containing 16 threads and 8 core count, it pairs well with high-end video cards like RTX 2080. Maximum boost clock of 4.6 GHz is obtained, whereas the base clock frequency starts at 3.8 GHz, which is great for smooth gameplay.

Having one of the great integrated graphics models, the Radeon RX Vega 8, it can resolve multiple queries simultaneously. A TDP of 65W is measured in this processor, as it has a bundled cooler, the AMD Wraith Stealth, which keeps the heat levels in check.

To improve the data transmission speed, DDR4 memory is used, which has enhanced data integrity and consumes less power. L2 cache of 16 MB is provided to the user for smooth delivery of games and other heavy processes. PCIe 3.0 is offered instead of PCIe 4.0, which might be a downgrade for some users. Popular games like Borderlands 3 and Far Cry 5 gave 100+ fps, resulting in being a great option for competitive players.

An AM4 socket is mandatory in the motherboard so the user can use this processor. Customers have many motherboard options to choose from, as several versions contain this socket. Furthermore, the Ryzen 7 5700G has a competitive price tag as it provides ultimate gaming performance to its users.


For this task, we take the Ryzen 7 3800XT with the Ryzen 7 5700G since they have similar attributes. Though the 3800XT has increased CPU and boost rates, the 5700G is cheaper, performs better, and contains bundled cooler and integrated graphics.


  • Exceptional performance
  • Fast results on iGPU
  • Bundled cooler
  • AM4 socket


  • PCIe 3.0 

5- Intel Core i7-11700K

Intel Core i7-11700K

The Intel Core i7-11700K and RTX 2080 are a powerful combination. It’s a powerful desktop processor that has 8 cores and 16 threads, and can boost up to 5.0 GHz. Also, i7-11700K is compatible with the latest LGA1200 socket and the Intel 500 series motherboards and select 400 series chipsets. It is also unlocked, meaning you can overclock it to achieve higher performance.

When paired with the RTX 2080, a high-end graphics card that can handle 1440p and 4K gaming at high settings, the Intel Core i7-11700K offers excellent performance in both gaming and productivity.

In most games, the i7-11700K CPU will not be a bottleneck, and the GPU will be able to reach its full potential, in return you will get high frame rates and smooth gameplay.

The Intel Core i7-11700K can deliver an average of 141.3 FPS at 1080p, 106.3 FPS at 1440p, and 63.8 FPS at 4K with the RTX 2080 at ultra quality settings in various games. It also performs well in multi-threaded tasks, such as video editing, rendering, and streaming.

These are the benchmarks of the Core i7-11700K and RTX 2080 in popular games. In Cyberpunk 2077: 80-100 fps at 1440p ultra settings, Red Dead Redemption 2: 60-80 fps at 4K high settings, Fortnite: 120-140 fps at 1080p competitive settings, Call of Duty: Warzone: 100-120 fps at 1440p high settings.

The Intel Core i7-11700K is a great processor for gaming and productivity when paired with the RTX 2080, but it also comes with some trade-offs in terms of power, temperature, and price.

6- Intel Core i7-10700KF

Intel Core i7-10700KF Desktop Processor

Intel is one of the best producers of CPUs in the world, and their Core i7-10700KF as it contains notable attributes. It has 16 threads and 8 cores and can handle top-tier GPUs like RTX 2080 Ti.

Furthermore, it can reach a peak boost clock rate of 5.1 GHz, while the base clock starts at 3.8 GHz. Unlocked for overclocking, this CPU is excellent for gaming performance. Hence, the TDP of this processor is measured to be 125W, so a CPU cooler is required, as the heat levels are increased due to the overclocking feature. 

For fast data transmission rates, dual-channel DDR4 memory can reach a maximum speed of 2933 MHz. While 128 GB is the maximum capacity allowed, that is more than enough for storing heavy data like videos and games.

Intel Optane Memory support accelerates memory speed and delivers smooth gameplay. Compatibility with the Intel 400 series of motherboards gives the user a good, said component for gaming performance. Socket type required to fit this processor is LGA 1200, which is present in a wide range of motherboards.

Games like Warhammer and Final Fantasy XV gave 100+ fps using this CPU, making it a good gaming option. A cache of 16 MB is available, which improves the data retrieval speed. Furthermore, the Core i7-10700KF comes at a reasonable cost, making it an affordable option for budget-conscious users.


We consider the Intel Core i7-5802K against the Core i7-10700KF as they share the same brand. Though the 5820K is cheaper, the 10700KF has more core and thread count, better performance, and lower TDP than the former model. 


  • Excellent gaming performance
  • PCIe 3.0 support
  • DDR4 memory
  • Affordable
  • Good boost clock rate


  • Not power efficient

Best CPUs for RTX 2080 Buying Guide

CPUs are the backbone of a computer system as it provides the computing power needed by the system. Moreover, the processor needs to be strong and should be able to push the video card’s limits and pixels. Our chosen graphic card, the RTX 2080, is a beast when it comes to 4K and 1440p gaming. So it needs a powerful CPU that can support this GPU and causes as little bottleneck as possible. Thus, we gathered a few processors that can support the RTX 2080 in its entirety. We recommend using the Intel Core i5-12600K, which has many modern features and pairs well with the RTX 2080 card. We discuss a few important factors so that even a novice user can make an informed decision.


Cache increases the data transfer rates of the memory, as the user’s frequent queries are stored here. So, it takes less time for the memory to retrieve the information the user needs to perform tasks. In this list, the Ryzen 9 5900X has the highest amount of cache, 64 MB.


Multi-cores are supposed to work at a low frequency while providing high computing power but consuming less power. So, the performance is better when the number of cores is high, and vice versa. Core i5-13600K has the highest amount of cores (16) in this list, and as a result, the performance of this processor is far higher than the average processor.

Clock Rates

High clock rates make sure to provide smooth and clear graphics of the games and videos the user is playing and streaming. Boost clock rate ranges between 4.2 GHz and 5.1 GHz, while the base clock is between 3.5 GHz and 3.8 GHz in this article. So, the performance will be enhanced and better when the boost clock rate is at its highest.

Cooling Functionality

Some processors come with a bundled cooler, a bonus point for customers as it keeps the heat levels in check. One such example is the Ryzen 5 3600, which includes the Wraith Stealth cooler. However, almost all the mentioned processors do not have the said component, so they need a CPU cooler to lower the system’s temperature. 

Socket Type

Motherboards contain a socket where the processor chip fits to work, and there are different sockets. Mainly, AM4 for AMD processors and Intel’s LGA 1200 and 1700 are mentioned in these CPUs. Thus, the motherboard should have these socket types to fit one of these processors. 


Which CPU Is Best For RTX 2080?

We recommend the, but there are many more options the user can choose from.

Is RTX 2080 Good For Gaming?

RTX 2080 is a great video card for gaming as it has several notable features that can benefit gamers.

Is RTX 2080 High-end?

Yes, the RTX 2080 is a high-end graphics card that is a beast in terms of performance and price.


  • Dave James

    Dave has been gaming since the days of Zaxxon and Lady Bug on the Colecovision, and code books for the Commodore Vic 20 (Death Race 2000!). He built his first gaming PC at the tender age of 16, and finally finished bug-fixing the Cyrix-based system around a year later. When he dropped it out of the window. He first started writing for Official PlayStation Magazine and Xbox World many decades ago, then moved onto PC Format full-time, then PC Gamer, TechRadar, and T3 among others. Now he's back, writing about the nightmarish graphics card market, CPUs with more cores than sense, gaming laptops hotter than the sun, and SSDs more capacious than a Cybertruck.

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