Best CPU for NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti

EVGA RTX 3060 Ti XC
EVGA RTX 3060 Ti XC (Image credit: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

The best processor (CPU) for any GPU, including the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti, is one that won't bottleneck the graphics card. Even though the RTX 3060 Ti isn't the most capable 30-series GPU from NVIDIA, it's still worth buying a very powerful CPU if you can ensure that there's no bottleneck outside the best graphics card you can afford.

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We always recommend purchasing the best graphics cards you can afford. If this is the RTX 3060 Ti, then the processors we recommended here will pair up with the graphics card well. Luckily, the CPU market hasn't been decimated like the GPU market through the current worldwide tech shortage and pandemic. If you are looking for a GPU, we've got a guide on where to buy NVIDIA RTX 30-series graphics cards.

Any of the above CPUs will do a great job depending on the level of performance you're looking for, but the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X or Intel Core i9-10900K are where the serious performance lies. If you want to push 4K resolutions in modern AAA games, the Ryzen 9 5950X is the ultimate pick. It is, however, quite a bit more expensive than the Core i9.

If you have an Intel build and still want to push performance next to your RTX 3060 Ti, the Core i9-10900K is a great pick with 10 cores and 20 threads. As mentioned, the Core i9-11900K is available, though it doesn't offer enough of a performance boost to warrant the price difference. Stick with the 10th Gen chip for a much better buy.

For more buying options, be sure to check out our picks for the best processor for your custom PC.

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.