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An idiot question about dual (or multi) core processor speeds

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#1 ChrisFlynn

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 02:16 PM

Dual core machines have 2 cores in one chip. So is the quoted speed (e.g. "1.8Ghz dual core") per core or per chip? Am I getting two flows of execution at 1.8Ghz each, or is effectively two 0.9Ghz cores amounting to a theoretical addition?

I currently have a 3.5 year old 2.6Ghz Celeron machine, so am pretty surprised to see that new machines now don't have speeds a lot of Ghz faster (RIP Moore's Law). What's a very approximate equivalent in dual-core terms of my 2.6Ghz Celeron, and does anyone have any recommendations? Is quad significantly better than dual? Are certain models better? Or is it all about the RAM these days?

The way I work is usually to have lots of things going on (I'm currently doing WAMP, ripping a CD, uploading, checking my email, have 5 browsers open - that's just light usage), and am not interested in gaming or graphics, if that helps...

#2 Daniel0

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 02:50 PM

Dual core processor speeds are per core, so if you have a 1.8 GHz dual core processor then you'll have two cores on that processor that each are able to run at that frequency.

#3 anonymous52090

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Posted 29 February 2008 - 07:03 AM

Any recent dual core processor will blow any Celeron away. The Celeron processor, even when it came out, was never a great chip. It was released to be a budget processor. I have also heard from some computer techs that Celeron's don't run at their full clock speed.

But it is not just the clock speed of a processor that matters, a lot of it is the architecture of the chip. Taking Intel's Core2Duo line for example, it has quite a few platforms the most recent being Penryn, and before Penryn is was Santa Rosa. And if you were to compare a 2.5Ghz Santa Rosa chip to a 2.5Ghz Penryn chip, the Penryn would come out about 10% faster - because of its better architecture. And the Penryn wasn't truely even a new platform, it was a "refresh" of the Santa Rosa platform so other performance gaps would be larger.


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