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Core i5 vs Core i7 vs core 2 duo

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware' started by tanneji, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. tanneji

    tanneji Member

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    So its new laptop season and I sit here trying to figure out what I need. I'm not sure if I need a Core 2 duo, Core i5, or Core i7. I will be doing the usual ... occasional vehicle wrap set up (but not much ... vast majority of that on the desktop), web site work, illustrator, photoshop etc. Also, is a discrete graphics card necessary? I'll probably get one anyway for the occasional game but I have always been a desktop guy. I'm so used to getting whatever came with it knowing that I could upgrade along the way. Not so much with laptops. Anyway, any and all help would be great!

    Thanks all!

    Joel
     
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  2. Dice

    Dice Active Member

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    Great article on this topic recently on tomshardware: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/quad-core-cpu,2499.html

    If your playing any games, or doing any design work on it you definitely need a discrete video card.

    I would stay away from laptops for a design machine, you won't get as much bang for your buck.
     
  3. SignBurst PCs

    SignBurst PCs Very Active Member

    Ditto.

    The CPU question is a complicated one. It really depends on what kind of performance that you want out of your system. All three will get the job done, but the i5 and i7 systems will get it done FASTER. Intel made a big jump in performance with the i5 and i7 CPUs.
     
  4. tanneji

    tanneji Member

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    Thanks for that link to toms ... definitely helps a bit! I have a desktop but find myself being in need a laptop more and more often lately. For instance, we have been working on a monument sign with lots of back and forth with the client and it would be nice to be able to go to them with the laptop and sit in their office and design it with them. I have a great new desktop that the boss just got me with core i7 etc so it does the heavy lifting but I would like the supplemental laptop for home use, and as mentioned above. I just don't want to overspend but also stay current for a while.
     
  5. Dice

    Dice Active Member

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    I think with an i7 or an i5 you'll spend about 1.5-2x more. They are just now starting to inch into main stream so the prices haven't really come down.

    To keep costs down I would go with a Core 2, Upgrade the Ram to at least 4 gigs and get a good video card. A GOOD SSD would go a long way as well, i would get this separately.

    Keep your eye on TechBargins http://www.techbargains.com wait for a coupon or a deal that fits in line with what your looking for.
     
  6. Dice

    Dice Active Member

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    I don't know of these are still good, but man look at that Adamo Pearl! Drool......

    http://www.techbargains.com/news_displayItem.cfm/193812


    HOT - 40% Off Microsoft Store Laptop Markdowns (includes Dell Adamo, HP dm3, MORE) , Jan. 18 6 AM
    Microsoft Store still has deals on the following laptop computers. Free Shipping on all listed systems. Tax in most.
    Prices below are after coupon code: MSStore-PC-40%

    Dell Adamo 13.3" Laptop Computer (Pearl Color Only) $899.40 Free Shipping
    (4lbs; 13.3" 1366x768 LED; Intel Core 2 Duo ULV @ 1.2GHz; 2GB RAM; 128GB SSD; 802.11n + bluetooth; Windows 7 Home Premium; DVI-out; webcam; 1yr warranty)

    HP Pavilion dm3-1044nr 13.3" Laptop Computer $449.40 Free Shipping
    (3.9lbs; 13.3" 1366x768 LED; Intel Pentium SU4100 @ 1.3GHz; 4GB RAM; 320GB HDD; 802.11n; Windows 7 Home Premium; HDMI; webcam; 6-cell battery; 1yr warranty)

    Lenovo ThinkPad T400s Intel Core 2 Duo P9400 2.4GHz 14.1" Laptop for $929.40
    (3.9lbs; 14.1" 1440x900 LED; 4GB RAM; 120GB HDD; DVD burner; 802.11n; Windows 7 Home Premium; webcam; 6-cell battery)

    Lenovo ThinkPad X301 Intel Core 2 Duo SU9400 1.4GHz 13.3" Laptop for $959.40 (search item #: E662CBD4)
    (3.3lbs; 13.3" 1440x900 LED; 2GB RAM; 120GB HDD; DVD burner; 802.11n + bluetooth; Windows 7 Home Premium; webcam; 6-cell battery)
     
  7. tanneji

    tanneji Member

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    Hey thats not bad at all! Massive thanks for the link!
     
  8. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    One thing you will want to keep a look out for is the ULV Core2Duo processors as you would NOT want to do design work on these laptops. They could technically probably handle it, but it would be very very slow.

    I highly recommend getting a Core i5 or i7 processor as it will be the industry standard in the coming years, be compatible with future upgrades, and offer more performance overall than the Core2Duo. Most of the big name brands have now released i5/i7 versions of their notebooks. If you have the money I would also highly suggest looking into the business end of these notebooks as they will have hardware more capable with design work, such as dedicated Quadro graphics, higher resolution and higher quality displays, and better overall build quality.

    Take a look at the review of the upcomming HP EliteBook 8440w!
     
  9. tanneji

    tanneji Member

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    ^ THAT. IS. SICK. I want one haha ... A little more than 14 inch though
     
  10. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    If you take a look at the HP Business website they have several sizes of the new EliteBook notebooks coming, including the 14" (reviewed above), 15", and 17". They will also be having new ProBook notebooks. The ProBooks are very similar to the EliteBooks except for lack of aluminum construction, and often slightly less powerful graphics.

    Honestly I am contemplating very hard on purchasing the 8440w notebook when it is released. I had been eyeing the Dell Precision M4400 (even though I'm not a big Dell fan) until news of these new EliteBooks came along.
     
  11. Grafix USA

    Grafix USA Member

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    I just upgraded my desktop with the i7 processor and a Asus SuperComputer motherboard with 6GB DDR3 RAM. The combination is leaps better than my previous setup with an Intel Core 2 duo. Design programs large files run much faster without hanging up.
     
  12. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    Guam USA
    I updated to a 64bit i7(920) with 9 gigs of memory.
    I've been ripping some not so large files in Flexi Pro 8.6 the last few days and the rip times didn't seem all that much faster than my old dual core XP system.
    Popping open the task manager while Flexi is ripping shows just one of the cores getting any use and only a 12% load overall.
    Maybe I have the settings wrong in Flexi but it does not seem to use more than one core.

    wayne k
    guam usa
     
  13. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    Wayne you are correct, Flexi is currently not multi-threaded. I contacted SAi for clarification on this and was told that Flexi will only run a single thread for the main application itself, a second thread for Production Manager, and a third thread sending output from Flexi to Production Manager. This means that while you are designing only 1 core will ever be used by Flexi at the most. If you are also doing a print or rip then Flexi will use up to a maximum of 3 cores. Anything else would only be used by other applications concurrently running or by other applications that scale better and utilize more threads such as newer versions of Adobe.
     
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