Fortunately, finding a great processor couldn’t be any easier. Both AMD and Intel offer great processors that possess more power than the average user will harness at affordable prices.
An office or “everyday” computer is used for all sorts of applications, MS Word, PowerPoint, email, surfing the internet, watching videos, gaming, etc… It’s unlikely that this sort of computer would be used for highly intensive application on a regular basis, so a top of the line dual or quad core CPU might be overkill if you’re on a budget amd cpu for sale. Any low to midrange CPU would be a great and affordable complement to this system.
You may be surprised to hear this, but gaming performance is really about the video / graphics card. If you want to make a somewhat affordable gaming rig that can actually play games, take the money you save on the processor and invest in a better video card. Any dual core processor should suffice.
This depends on your programming environment and the types of programs you are writing. If you are using the latest versions of Visual Studio, you probably want to invest in a good dual core
processor, since the IDE can be huge CPU hogs. At any rate a decent dual core should cover all bases with power to spare.
Whether you’re a 2D or 3D artist you should probably invest in a quad core with the latest instruction set (SSE 4, etc…) Applying filters on large images or working with 3D models are complex computer processes that take a lot of CPU power to perform. I’m no graphic artist, but I would assume that waiting for filters to be rendered and applied to an image or model isn’t something a graphic artist enjoys.
In most cases video encoding is an extremely time consuming process with encodes that can take days to complete. If you intend to do a lot of video encoding, invest in a good quad core with the latest instruction set (SSE 4, etc…). If you can’t afford a good quad core then a cheaper processor will work, it’s just going to take a lot longer, so you’re going to have to run the computer all night and day.