Intel I3 4160 3.6GHz CPU Price Compare & Review

I3 4160 3.6GHz Processor Review

The Intel I3 4160 processor is a CPU at the higher end of the I3 family and now available with an affordable price tag. When selecting a processor for any system the task is a trade off between performance and price. More often than not it is a bad idea to purchase the best processor on the market when you can get a lower model that completes all of the tasks you want for half the price. Equally you do not want a CPU that you are going to need to upgrade in less than 6 months time. For a home theatre pc the Intel I3 4160 pretty much hits the sweet spot. For film and music media centres the I3 range will deliver great performance for all operating systems and media centre software packages. For this type of setup you could potentially take a lesser CPU but the I3 4160 will last! For gaming machines the I3 4160 will play the bulk of today’s top games (information correct at time of posting) and performance tests for a selection of PC games are shown below. The I3 4160 will also play all of the latest system emulators that support commercial games in the very best resolutions including Dolphin Wii Emulator, PCSX2 and some of the latest arcade systems. It is unlikely that the PS3 emulator RPCS3 will support I3 CPUs but commercial games are some way off and for now there are no system emulators that the I3 4160 CPU cannot handle.

Compare Intel I3 4160 Prices
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Intel I3 4160 Specifications

Frequency / Speed 3.6GHz Cores 2 Max Memory 32GB
Cache 3MB Threads 4 Memory Type DDR3 & DDR3L
Instruction Set 64-bit Power Consumption 54W CPU Graphics Intel HD Graphics 4400

Intel I3 4160 Installation

Installing the Intel I3 4160 CPU could not be simpler. The processor will only fit one way into the socket and this is clearly marked on the chip. In tighter media centre cases with little working space it is best to install your CPU and heatsink prior to seating the mother board. The standard CPU fan comes with all the paste you need and a single cable to fit to your motherboard. The Intel I3 4160 will fit all motherboards with a H3 socket type.

Intel I3 4160 Performance

The below video shows Call of Duty Advanced Warfare, FIFA 15 and GTA V all running on a gaming system with an I3 processor. Please note that your results may vary depending on your graphics chipset.

One of the big advantages of this CPU is the fact that it does not require any oversized cooling devices and the standard CPU fan that comes included in the package is more than enough (consider cooler upgrades for over clocking).

The table below shows the system emulator compatibility of some of the more resource hungry computer and games console emulators.

Emulator Name System Compatible Full Resolution
Dolphin Gamecube / Wii Yes Yes
PCSX2 PS2 Yes Yes
PCSX Playstation Yes Yes
Raine Arcade Taito Type Yes Yes
RPCSX3 PS3 Doubtful No

Reasons to Buy Intel i3 4160 CPU

  • CPU will play the majority of games and system emulators
  • Low cost due to the availability of i5 and i7 CPUs
  • Suitable for almost all HTPC media centre needs

HMP Verdict

Our verdict on this product is before the end of this post as the following content is geared towards the real computer techies and shows some of the more advanced features of the Intel I3 4160 CPU and not for everyone. In our humble oppinion the Intel I3 4160 should be more than enough for most HTPC media centre designs. It will run all of your films and music with ease and rarely go above 50% of its resource. For gaming media centres the I3 4160 will run the bulk of todays top PC games and the majority in top resolutions (graphics card dependant). In terms of computer and games console emulators this CPU will play all current emulators capable of running commercial games and in full resolutions. If your aim is portability and low power consumption then the Intel Idle States technology (outlined below) will reduce the energy requirements of your media centre. The best feature of this product is it’s price. With the Intel I5 and I7 CPUs now thrust into the market the Intel I3 processor series is now an affordable option for HTPC enthusiasts and with the CPU more than capable of running the very latest software application it is the perfect media centre CPU choice.

Advanced Features & Technologies

Intel Hyper-Threading Technology

Hyper-Threading allows multiple threads to execute on each core. This improves the efficiency of applications and allows multiple processor hungry pieces of software to run simultaneously with ease.

Intel Virtualization Technology VT-x

This technology will only aid your media centre if it is running on a virtual machine on either a Microsoft or VMware host but this is something that is growing in popularity. Intel Virtualization Technology works as like a hardware assist to virtualization software reducing complexity in virtual environments. The main aim is to reduce the overheads required for cache, I/O and memory, this improving the performance of your virtual machine and media centre.

Intel VT-x with Extended Page Tables EPT

Intel VT-x with Extended Page Tables EPT or second level address tables (SLAT) is another advanced feature for virtual media centres only and will without doubt aid virtual gaming machines. The technology is designed to improve the performance of memory hungry applications running on virtual machines and gaming certainly falls into this category.

Intel 64

Intel 64 will deliver 64bit computing to your home theatre solution. At present this is only important if you use your media centre for gaming. Many of the later system emulators are now 64bit installs and many games are now following suite.

Idle States

Want a low power consumption HTPC? Idle states or C states is designed  to reduce the power a processor uses when it is not required.

Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology

Another power saving technology designed to switch voltage and frequency in accordance to the CPU load.

Thermal Monitoring Technologies

TMT monitors the temperature of the CPU and regulates and manages the power going to it to keep your processor running a safe temperatures.


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