I am looking to get myself a new teenie laptop for portable coding. Acer have two nice little models that I am interested in. One being the Travelmate 3000 series, the other the Travelmate 3010 series.
The 3000 series machine has 1 gig of 533MHz RAM and a 2 GHz pentium M centrino 760 with the Intel 915GM motherboard
The 3010 series machine has 1 gig of 533 MHz RAM and a 1.66 GHz centrino core duo T2300 with the Intel 945GM motherboard
They both satisfy my criteria for portablity. I have a much more powerfull desktop that is a AMD Athlon 64 3500+ with 2 gig of 400MHz RAM on an Asus A8V Deluxe motherboard. This machine I can log into remotely to run my code if I have access to internet (the code can take from 15 hours onwards to complete a simulation undisturbed). So I can just alter my code on the go and run on this if I want to.
Now here is the source of my indecision. The 3000 series is more than capable as an expensive typewriter. However, if there is a possibility of having a machine that can also do a resonable amount of processing when testing the code on it, then I am tempted to go for a more powerfull and more expensive toy, ahem, sorry, tool.
A compiler can take care of optimising the code for utilising both processors. So, will the 3010 series laptop with faster RAM and two processors have a comptative speed at number crunching relative to my desktop if I had to run my code in the absence of internet access. I know it would outstrip the single processor laptop. I just want to know if the two slower processors and faster RAM make up enough performance to warrant getting one. If it can manage half the rate of the desk top then it would probably be worhtwhile owning else i will settle for a typewriter.
I don't really have a feel for how much a performance boost the faster RAM can give and what equivalent single processor speed the 1.66 GHz duo is. I am sure it is not naively 2x1.66 GHz...or is it? :?
Oh yeah, and one other question. Does anyone know if the heating of the duo is significantly more than the centrino and hence will a duo laptop be annoyingly noisy compared to the single centrino one?
Thank you for your help anyone who replies to this.
Tech Report just released a performance review of a core duo T2600 on a desktop mobo, and it is very powerful.
For single-threaded power, a 'Core' is just a bit faster than a Pent.-M at the same clock, so you're not losing much of your typewriter getting the core duo even though its slower. The Athlon64's are about the same clock for clock as a P-M & Core.
In fully multi-threaded operation, you get about 80% additional performance from the 2nd core. That's in the perfect situation, say applying a blur to an image in Photoshop - if a single will take 10 sec, a dual will take about 6 sec.
Now for your use... no idea. That depends on how parallel-izeable the software you're using is and whether the crunching you're doing is something that can take advantage of a dual core, or is it too linear, or require a lot of disk I/O, or... (too many to take a guess at)
As far as heat - if the 2nd core isn't busy, it's shut down so it doesn't produce any heat at all. The CPU's watt rating is the same on the core duo as on the P-M, so fan noise & battery life is probably similar.
My code is fully parallelised for running on supercomputers so it can cope with two cpus fine. I was just not sure what 1.66 GHz dual core was in old money (single processor values). It appears to make a significant difference so I will get the duo core machine.