I have two computers I've recently built in the last year. Though I read the latest benchmarks and the latest news stories and seen a ton of articles stating that Quad Cores are basically useless in the home environment my own observations have been a little different. Both Computers have a Gateway FPD2275W. Computer 1 is running a Merc Stealth Keyboard and Sidewinder Mouse while Computer 2 has a Logitech Wireless setup.
Processor: Phenom 9600
Graphics: Radeon 3870
RAM: OCZ 4GB
OS: Vista 64 Home Premium
HD: There is 2. One is a 250 WD and the other is a 500 WD.
Since I built the two I have noticed something peculiar. My family naturally gravitates to Computer 1. I have asked them about it and they all state that it just runs better. Not in a big way but that it does. I've noticed this too. Computer 1 seems more responsive, it seems to play Games better, there seems to be less lag, and less restarts. Neither are overclocked nor do I plan to overclock. Overall Computer 1 just seems to run better and has become are most used Computer in the house.
Computer 2 does have it's good points in that it runs the older games that Vista 64 won't but Computer 1 runs the new games better. Is it highly noticiable? Sometimes. Many times I will notice a stutter or lag on Computer 2 while the stutter or lag on Computer 1 is near to zero. When your used to being on a computer that runs smooth those times when your on a computer that doesn't becomes much more noticiable. So saying their is no difference between the Quad and Duel Core for the average family is wrong. At least in our family it is. The Duel Core was less expensive but I feel it was a mistake. There seems to be a big difference between the two.
Another subject is why I went with AMD over Intel? I'll be building a 3rd and 4th computer within the next year and I wanted the ability to be able to swap out parts easily. The 3rd and 4th computer will get the parts from Computer 1 and 2 as I upgrade. AMD makes the process uncomplicated for me. Cost was also a factor.
I do like the Merc Stealth Keyboard and that will be one staying in my buy list for a while. I'm also looking at the Logitech Air Mouse.
I would like to know from others who are in the same situation if they notice the difference like I do? What about the Triple Core vs a Quad and is there a big difference between the two in real life situations like I'm experiencing in my household?
I have seen this similar situation over the last 3-4 years in my house. My fiance would not stop going to my pc and I got agravated that I had to wait until she got off to get back on to do what I needed to do.
The two cpus at the time was an AMD semperon 462 socket vs Intel P4 3.0Ghz Prescott cpu. Needless to say the P4 system was more responsive in almost every aspect. Especially from waking from sleep mode.
I upgraded to an AMD 6000+X2 and set her up with my old P4. She was happy at 1st but soon found that my new system was more responsive that what I gave her.
She now has an AMD 5200 X2 and I have the Q6600 setup and Im back in the same situation. I have found that I will need to upgrade her to a similar setup to mine to get her more interested in using her own pc.
Its not really as much as dual vs quad as it is cpu architecture superiority from my experience although I do prefer my quad in most cases...