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Yet another looking for laptop thread and processor discussion

Pedantyc 4,502 566 September 9, 2015 at 05:41 PM
Recently sold off my gaming laptop and I need something lower end for some more standard usage.

One thing I am noticing is that most i5 and i7 laptops are just 2 cores. How exactly does this make them any better than their i3 counterparts since they are not running quads?

Are there any likely candidates for quad core i5s that I can find at a lower price used since most everything is using an i5u?

Still hoping to stick with a 13" or below form factor here.

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#2
Quote from Pedantyc View Post :
Recently sold off my gaming laptop and I need something lower end for some more standard usage.

One thing I am noticing is that most i5 and i7 laptops are just 2 cores. How exactly does this make them any better than their i3 counterparts since they are not running quads?

Are there any likely candidates for quad core i5s that I can find at a lower price used since most everything is using an i5u?

Still hoping to stick with a 13" or below form factor here.
With laptop processors, pay a lot of attention to the letter that comes after the model number, as it tells you a lot about the power and battery life of the chip.

Y processors are tablet/netbook ~5W parts
U processors are ultrabook ~15W parts
M/MQ/HQ are laptop/desktop replacement ~35-~45W parts.

If you want a quad core processor, you're getting into the i7 MQ parts. For example, the i7 4700MQ is a 4 core / 8 thread CPU: http://ark.intel.com/products/751...o-3_40-GHz. Edit: Digging around intel's site some more, there are no mobile quad core haswell (http://ark.intel.com/products/fam...rs#@Mobile) or broadwell (http://ark.intel.com/products/fam...rs#@Mobile) i5's.

Among the U parts, which are the most common in consumer laptops these days, the i5 line gets you Turbo Boost, and the i7 line gets you... something I'm sure, but the difference doesn't seem as pronounced as in the desktop processor line to me either.
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Last edited by quotidian September 9, 2015 at 05:58 PM
#3
even though they're dual core they may have more cache or a higher clock speed, or some additional instruction sets depending on the specific use case.
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#4
Quote from quotidian View Post :
With laptop processors, pay a lot of attention to the letter that comes after the model number, as it tells you a lot about the power and battery life of the chip.

Y processors are tablet/netbook ~5W parts
U processors are ultrabook ~15W parts
M/MQ/HQ are laptop/desktop replacement ~35-~45W parts.

If you want a quad core processor, you're getting into the i7 MQ parts. For example, the i7 4700MQ is a 4 core / 8 thread CPU: http://ark.intel.com/products/751...o-3_40-GHz

Among the U parts, which are the most common in consumer laptops these days, the i5 line gets you Turbo Boost, and the i7 line gets you... something I'm sure, but the difference doesn't seem as pronounced as in the desktop processor line to me either.
Ah, forgot about turbo. That would be the only real difference for the U i5's and i3's then. I will take a look at the MQ models then. I have been checking out some M's but keep finding that they are only dual cores as well.

I may just break down and get an i3 since I really don't need to do much on it, I just have high demands for products.

Also, are the A8 or A10 AMD chips worth even looking at? They seem to perform worse and cost more than even the dual core i5Us. That didn't seem right.
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Quote from Pedantyc View Post :
Ah, forgot about turbo. That would be the only real difference for the U i5's and i3's then. I will take a look at the MQ models then. I have been checking out some M's but keep finding that they are only dual cores as well.

I may just break down and get an i3 since I really don't need to do much on it, I just have high demands for products.

Also, are the A8 or A10 AMD chips worth even looking at? They seem to perform worse and cost more than even the dual core i5Us. That didn't seem right.
No, the AMD chips are pretty terrible. To their credit, they dedicate more transistors to graphics and beat Intel in terms of onboard GPU power, but Intel's onboard graphics are good enough to handle anything you wouldn't want an external GPU for anyway.

Since you replied, I figured out that you can follow links on that Intel site to get a full list of processors by series and generation. There are links up thread now if you didn't see them.
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#6
Quote from quotidian View Post :
With laptop processors, pay a lot of attention to the letter that comes after the model number, as it tells you a lot about the power and battery life of the chip.

Y processors are tablet/netbook ~5W parts
U processors are ultrabook ~15W parts
M/MQ/HQ are laptop/desktop replacement ~35-~45W parts.

If you want a quad core processor, you're getting into the i7 MQ parts. For example, the i7 4700MQ is a 4 core / 8 thread CPU: http://ark.intel.com/products/751...o-3_40-GHz. Edit: Digging around intel's site some more, there are no mobile quad core haswell (http://ark.intel.com/products/fam...rs#@Mobile) or broadwell (http://ark.intel.com/products/fam...rs#@Mobile) i5's.

Among the U parts, which are the most common in consumer laptops these days, the i5 line gets you Turbo Boost, and the i7 line gets you... something I'm sure, but the difference doesn't seem as pronounced as in the desktop processor line to me either.

Good explanation, Processor families are important too. You generally don't get much in terms of clock speed but you will see some improvement in performance, biggest improvement has been in battery life and graphics power. Research the chip before comparing different machines/models of laptop.
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Quote from LiquidRetro View Post :
Good explanation, Processor families are important too. You generally don't get much in terms of clock speed but you will see some improvement in performance, biggest improvement has been in battery life and graphics power. Research the chip before comparing different machines/models of laptop.
Yeah, that's a good point. When the dust settled on Broadwell, I never did look back to see how it compared to Haswell. The initial debut was a bit of a flop, but mostly because they were trying to squeeze way too much into a 5W thermal envelope. Now that the 15W and higher Broadwells are out, I wonder how they compare to Haswell on equal footing.
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#8
Quote from quotidian View Post :
Yeah, that's a good point. When the dust settled on Broadwell, I never did look back to see how it compared to Haswell. The initial debut was a bit of a flop, but mostly because they were trying to squeeze way too much into a 5W thermal envelope. Now that the 15W and higher Broadwells are out, I wonder how they compare to Haswell on equal footing.
I haven't looked into it much either. Aside from benchmarking my several year old ivy bridge in my old laptop and being surprised on how well it was still stacking up I haven't looked at processors in a while.

Aside from trying to get the same performance (not really) for much lower power to use passive cooling these laptop chips haven't improved much. Graphics has improved, but I would still like some present day options for full powered chips.
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Last edited by Pedantyc September 10, 2015 at 10:11 AM

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#9
Managed to find this for just under $300. Hopefully it isn't pure garbage but was inside what I was willing to deal with for price and appears to outperform the i7 and i5 U processors that I keep seeing.

Dell Latitude E6230 12.5"
i7 3520M 2.9GHz
8GB ram
128GB SSD
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#10
Most manufacturers decided to skip over the "standard" power Broadwell chips because they knew the standard power Skylake chips would be available just 3 months later.

Skylake just released at the beginning of September, so I'd expect to see quite a few laptop refreshes coming now including quad core 6xxx chips.
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