PC Gear Lab

Best CPU for Fortnite in 2023

best cpu for fortnite

Compared to the rest of the AAA title games, particularly the simulation and strategy games, Fortnite does not require a top-of-the-line CPU to reach an FPS of 60 or even 120 or above.

Generally, when building a gaming rig, we recommend going for either the AMD Ryzen 5 or the Intel Core i5 series depending upon your brand preference or whichever is offering the best deal at the time you buy.

However, if you are strict on budget, then you can also opt for the cheaper CPUs from the likes of the Intel Core i3 series.

This is because unless you want to stream your gaming session on 1080p or 4k with software-based x264 encoding on Twitch or other platforms, you don’t need a high-performance processor for Fortnite.

But if your budget allows some leeway, then Ryzen 5 and Core i5 are the mainstream CPUs of choice because they are not just excellent for Fortnite but are also great for bigger and more demanding AAA titles. They are also great for productivity and for editing clips – for your Fortnite YouTube channel. 

Again depending on your budget and needs, you can opt for cheaper or more expensive processors. In the following article, we look at some of the best CPU for Fortnite from different price ranges.

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System Requirements for Fortnite

Minimum Intel Core i3-3225 Intel HD 4000
IRIS Pro 5200
Recommended Intel Core i5-7300U NVIDIA GTX 960
HD 7870

Before we start reviewing the recommended processors for Fortnite, it is worth a shot to look at what the official system requirements have to say.

For the CPU, the requirements are as follows

  • Minimum: Intel Core i3-3225 | 2 cores / 4 threads | 3.3 GHz
  • Recommended: Intel Core i5-7300U | 2 cores / 4 threads | 2.6 GHz – 3.5 GHz

Of course, the overall stability of the game also depends upon your graphics card as well as the RAM, but as for the processor the official requirements are as stated above.

It is also worth noting that the minimum requirements will not guarantee stable gameplay, particularly on high graphics. You may have to tweak the graphics settings.

Similarly, the recommended hardware is good enough for ensuring a stable 60 FPS Gameplay on 1080p (granted you have a decent graphics card). Playing on higher FPS and at larger resolution would certainly require a beefier processor.

The Epic Quality Preset

The Epic Quality was a new preset that was released due to the graphical overhaul that took place starting from Chapter 2 Season 7. 

Meeting this requirement isn’t a must, but for QHD gameplay at very high or EPIC graphics settings, it is recommended that you meet the following threshold.

Epic Intel Core i7-8700
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
AMD RX 6700 XT

How Do These Processors Compare with the Newer Processors of Today

Obviously, the processors mentioned in the system requirements are more or less obsolete. The Core i3-3225 was released back in 2012 whereas the Core i5-7300U was first seen in 2017.

The CPUs stipulated in the Epic requirements are also more or less obsolete.

Hence, if you are building a new PC, it is better to compare how these processors stack up against the newer generation of processors.

To do this, we will look at the Passmark benchmark results.

CPU Passmark Score
Intel Core i3-3225 (Minimum) 2,235
Intel Core i5-7300U (Recommended) 3,698
Intel Pentium G7400 6,771
Intel Core i7-8700 (Epic) 12,965
AMD Ryzen 5 5600G 19,880
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (Epic) 22,685
AMD Ryzen 5 7600X 28,774
Intel Core i5 13400 26,492
Intel Core i5 13600K 38,489

Hence you can see here that even the weakest of the current-gen CPUs i.e Intel Pentium G7400 is more than twice as powerful as the officially recommended Intel Core i5-7300U processor.

As such for playing on high graphics while maintaining a good 60FPS frame rate, even an Intel Pentium G7400 can suffice. I am not recommending this CPU per se, but just trying to prove a point that newer gen CPUs are too strong for Fortnite.

CPU Options I would point out for Fortnite are below.

Graphics Card with an Integrated GPU

CPU with an Integrated GPU for Budget Builds

Not only is Fortnite light on the CPU, it can also be played with merely an iGPU.

This is a game that has many layers to it. You can play it on a Potato PC or on a high-end machine DEPENDING on the graphics settings you choose.

The flexibility of the graphics settings allows this game to be played by the masses.

With that said, if you are on a budget and do not wish to spend on a dedicated graphics card, then a CPU with a good iGPU would do just fine granted that you keep the settings at low.

Ryzen 5 5600G with iGPU

AMD Ryzen 5 5600G

AM4 | Vega Graphics | PCIe 3.0 | DDR4
6 Core | 12 Thread | 3.9 GHz – 4.4 GHz

The cherry on the cake for mid-range CPU is that it costs almost, if not less, than the Intel entry-level i3 CPUs from the 13th gen. Of course, the drawback is that it is only based on the older PCIe 3.0 protocol and hence will not support the newer gen components such as gen 4 or gen 5 SSDs.

AMD Ryzen G series CPUs are perhaps the most popular GPU featuring iGPU. They have perhaps the most powerful iGPUs for a CPU.

But you can also look into the newer 13th gen intel CPUs as well as the AMD Ryzen 7000 series CPUs for a good iGPU.

iGPU G3DMark Performance Score
AMD Radeon 
(Ryzen 7 5700G)
AMD Radeon 
(Ryzen 5 5600G)
AMD Radeon
(AMD Radeon 5 7600X)
Intel UHD 770
(Intel 13th Gen i7/i5)
Intel UHD 730
(Intel 13th Gen i3)
Intel Iris Pro (minimum) 1201
NVIDIA GT 730 823
(Entry level dedicated GPU for Reference)

As can be seen above the AMD Ryzen “G” series CPUs in particular and the newer Intel 13th Gen and AMD 7000 series CPU in generation have an iGPU more powerful than the Iris Pro stipulated as the minimum requirement.

(VIDEO) Fortnite on AMD Ryzen 5 5600G (iGPU only):

For a Mid Range Build

For a mid-range build, you are obviously going to have a decent dedicated graphics card installed.

The definition of a mid-range build is drastically different today than it was a few years back. Mid-range builds today cater to gamers who would like to play at FHD 120 FPS or QHD 60 FPS at high graphics.

High-end entails 4K gameplay or gameplay on multiple FHD or QHD monitors. 

So for a mid-range build for Fortnite, you’d obviously need to have a CPU that can have a decent parity with your graphics card and in this case, you can again stick with the mainstream Ryzen 5 or the Intel Core i5 from the newer generation.

The most current are:

  • AMD Ryzen 5 7600X (Passmark 28,774)
  • Intel Core i5 13400 – Low Performance i5 (Passmark 26,492)
  • Intel Core i5 13600K – Overclockable – High-Performance i5 (Passmark 38,489)

While the Core i5 13600K is more powerful than the AMD Ryzen 5 7600X, they both have the same performance/dollar ratio (if you take their MSRP cost ~$320 vs ~ $240 respectively)

Mainstream CPU for Fortnite

Intel Core i5 13600K

LGA1700 | Intel UHD 770 | PCIe 4.0/5.0 | DDR4/DDR5
14 Cores (6P/8E) | 20 Threads | 3.9 GHz – 5.1 GHz

But as far as the popularity goes, Intel Core i5 13600K seems to be the new reigning king for mainstream gaming processors.

Intel Takes the Thone: 15-13600K – GamerNexus

What Kind of Processor Do You Need for Streaming Fortnite?

Many Fortnite players love to stream their gaming sessions AND also love to play it on the highest graphics possible at the same time to make it look attractive to their audience.

BUT streaming is a WHOLE different ball game. Streaming your games is one of the most TAXING things you can do on your PC.

Why? because when streaming, your PC NOT ONLY has to handle the graphics processing for your game (at epic graphics probably), but also has to record AND broadcast your stream live.

When you broadcast your live streams or record them on your HDD, your gameplay goes through the process of ENCODING, and this is something that EATS through your CPU’s juice.

Encoding can be taxing on your system. x264 will utilize a lot of your CPU, resulting in lower FPS – stream.twitch.tv

Things become even tougher when the quality and the resolution of your streams is set to high. 

So long story short, get a beefy CPU if you are a Fortnite streamer!

8 Cores is the MINIMUM recommended.

Presets above Faster require CPUs with 6+ cores. – Twitch.tv

With that said Ryzen 7 7700X or Intel Core i7 13700K would be a good place to start with. The former is cheaper; whereas, the latter is more powerful.

A Fortnite Streamer's CPU

Intel Core i7-13700K

LGA1700 | Intel UHD 770 | PCIe 4.0/5.0 | DDR4/DDR5
16Cores (8P/8E) | 24 Threads | 4.2 GHz – 5.4 GHz


streaming build

You can also choose to build a dedicated streaming PC. That way, the primary CPU will JUST handle the gaming and would not be affected by the stream. 

The second PC will handle the streaming and broadcasting. This, however, is a costlier endeavor and reserved ONLY for the most seasoned of  Fortnite streamers.

Other Factors to Consider for a Fortnite Processor

Does Fortnite Use Multiple Cores? How Many Cores Does it Use?

According to a study conducted by Tomshardware.com, a CPU with two cores is quite sufficient for Fortnite with the highest graphics settings at 1080 resolution.

Fortunately, almost all of the processors these days feature way more than 2 cores. 4 Cores is the standard for even the weaker Core i3 and Ryzen 3 processors.

Single Core vs Multi-Core Performance of the Processor For Fortnite

Like most games out there, Fortnite does not scale very well with a high core count. As mentioned earlier, you would not see a drastic improvement on a processor with more than 2 core count.

Hence, if your goal is to primarily maximize the performance of the game, we recommend you look for a processor with an excellent single-core performance i.e a higher clock speed.

However, if you plan to play, stream, encode your streams using the processor, record your gameplay, and perhaps perform video editing for a Youtube gaming channel you own, then multi-core performance becomes very important.

Final Words

Fortnite itself is not a very demanding game, however, depending upon the graphics settings, and the resolution of your gameplay, the requirements of the CPU would change drastically.

The need for a better and more powerful processor would be even more pronounced once you start delving into streaming, recording, and editing your gameplay videos.

In this article, we looked at the best CPU for Fortnite for different types of needs, players, and budgets.

Abdul Rauf

Abdul Rauf is an IT and computer hardware specialist. Having done his degree in Computer Systems, he pursues his passion of computer hardware through writing detailed blogs and articles to demystify all the tech related jargon for a layman. Besides, hes a huge gaming nut and he's proud of it.

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