I have a GA-Z77X-D3H motherboard with 16GB RAM and a i3-3220 CPU which I know is kind of bottom of the barrel as far as CPU's go. I want to upgrade to a better one, but I can't seem to find a compatibility chart anywhere even on Gigabyte's website. I know that upgrades depend on BIOS type (so I've heard. like FA, FB or whatever) how can I tell what BIOS I have and what CPU's are compatible with my MB? I am retired and surviving on Social Security so I can't afford a lot. Also I have seen some used CPU's on Ebay and wondrered if they would be reliable? Any recommedations or help would be greatly appreciated.
As per the link in my previous comment you can see that your motherboard (socket 1155) supports both Intel 2nd gen (Sandy Bridge) and 3rd gen (Ivy Bridge) processors (the Core i7-3770 and 3770K being of the latter). I would not advise you to go with Sandy Bridge (2xxx) processors, even if you can find a very good deal, because they are no longer supported by Windows 10. Ivy Bridge (3xxx) processors, like your Core i3-3220, do harbor moderate support for Windows 10, so getting one would be the only sensible thing.
There always exists a slight chance even a system with an Ivy Bridge CPU (3rd gen) may not be able to run the latest versions of Windows 10 after update from Windows 7 or Windows 8 / 8.1 or through clean installation. However, getting an Ivy Bridge CPU over a Sandy Bridge one would still be recommended for the facts of more support, newer architecture and technology, and higher PCIe revision (3.0 opposed to 2.0 for Sandy Bridge). Furthermore, currently it seems that Sandy Bridge processors are absolutely not supported by Windows 10.
-> If you've got Windows 10 running on the Core i3-3220, it should run unproblematically on the faster Core i7-3770 or Core i7-3770K from the same generation (Ivy Bridge).
1 Upgrade only: If you bought a system that came with Windows 7, Windows 8
, or Windows 8.1*, refer to your original equipment manufacturer (OEM) about upgrading to Windows® 10.
The Core i7-3770 and 3770K (Ivy Bridge) are a lot faster than the Core i3-3220 and would be a very good option for an update.
If you could it would be good to make sure that the CPU on Ebay is in working order and that you would be able to return it should it prove flawed and retrieve your money back.
It would be good to make sure that you have a fine cooler which would suffice and good thermal paste (Noctua is quite the thing).