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1st generation quad-core i7 vs 3rd generation core i3/i5 - Buying Laptop

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May 21, 2013 3:14:10 PM

I have to compare these two mobile cpus. I'm confused because the benchmark results for the latest core-i5 or even 2nd generation are way too above the old core-i7. How much difference will it make with two additional cores in core i7 but low benchmark results and old technology?

for example if I can have
    - HP Elitebook 8540w with core-i7 720QM and 8GB RAM and 1GB Quadro 1800M for Rs. 58,000 (used)
    - or Dell Vostro D3550 core-i5 2520M and 4GB RAM and 1GB Radeon HD 6630M for Rs. 64,000 (new)
    - or Dell Inspiron N5520 core-i7 3632QM and 8GB RAM and 1GB Radeon HD 7670M for Rs. 73,000

and likes....
which one should I go for.

Considering there would be much difference in laptop class, like 'elitebook' vs 'inspiron', also in money '58000' vs '73000', tech age '2009' vs '2012', number of cores 'four' vs 'two', generations '1st' vs '3rd' and category 'i7 (advance)' vs 'i3 (basic)'. Where to strike balance?
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May 21, 2013 4:29:45 PM

Depends. What are you going to be using this laptop for?

The second and third generation of core processors was actually a very sizeable jump over the first generation, but that isnt to say it isnt capable. It is very capable.

What is this laptop for however?
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May 21, 2013 4:40:34 PM

Generally speaking, 2nd gen Sandy Bridge CPUs are on average 12% more powerful than 1st gen. 3rd gen Ivy Bridge CPUs are on average 6% more powerful than 2nd gen CPUs. That means 3rd gen Ivy Bridge CPUs are about 19% more powerful than 1st gen Core i3/i5/i7 CPUs.

Comparing 2 vs. 3 vs. 4 cores becomes more difficult since that depends on how many cores the program actually uses and how efficiently it can make use of the additional cores.

The following link shows benchmarks of the 3rd gen i7-3770k vs the 1st gen i7-950 CPU. Not exactly a fair comparison because the i7-3770k is clocked 460MHz higher. You should look at the video encoding x.264 benchmark since that can make use of all available cores and Hyper Threading; the i7-3770k performs better.

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/551?vs=100

Here's the quad core i7-3770k vs the 6 core i7-990x. Basically the same clockspeed, but the i7-990x has a 2 core advantage. Again, looking at the x.264 benchmarks, the i7-3770k still performs better.

Here's benchmarks using the 3rd gen dual core i3-3220 vs. a 1st gen dual core i5-540. The i3-3220 is faster by 240MHz.

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/677?vs=143


Hopefully, the above can give you a general idea with regards to performance.
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May 21, 2013 10:31:19 PM

I will be using this laptop for software development mainly, at times it will be needed to run multiple VMs. I want to know now will it still be OK if I go for that old processor? and not just processor, it is more of a laptop buying question. Like if I go for latest CPU, I'd have to buy a laptop (Inspiron) that is way too low in quality than the Elitebook
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