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Intel i 7 quad core processor compared to core 2 duo

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December 4, 2009 6:32:02 AM

i'm looking at a Dell laptop and need info about the i7 720QM, vs. i7 820QM or instead, using the core 2 duo p8700.

What will be the real difference in actual performance for home use with each of these CPU's, minimal gaming, but Office 2007 and AUTOCAD 2008?
a b à CPUs
December 4, 2009 6:48:40 AM

Very noticeable in autocad, minimal in Office unless you have a habit of working with gigantic excel spreadsheets (in which case the i7 will be faster).

I'd get the i7. It probably isn't worth the money for the 820 over the 720 though.
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December 4, 2009 7:19:37 AM

Id agree with cjl its stupidity not to go with an i7 when you have the option to
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December 4, 2009 7:41:48 AM

Well, there are a couple of times when I'd lean towards a core 2. For a fairly thin and light 15", where cool running and battery life are priorities rather than raw processing power, I'd tend to lean towards a P series (25W TDP) Core 2. For performance though, there's no question. Get the i7.
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December 6, 2009 12:33:31 AM

i have a i7 on one of my desktops and TRUST me it is lightning FAST!
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December 6, 2009 6:16:23 AM

Quote:
How is it stupidity when it probably costs hundreds of dollars more and probably has half the battery life?

Of course if you have an unlimited budget and keep it plugged in all the time, its a no brainer.

The mobile i7s shouldn't have half the battery life - the TDP is only 10 watts more, and they dispense with the northbridge. I would expect their battery life under load to be a bit less, but due to the capability to shut down cores and the significant power saving capability, I wouldn't expect the idle battery life to be much different from a Core 2.
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a c 127 à CPUs
December 6, 2009 6:53:48 AM

Quote:
How is it stupidity when it probably costs hundreds of dollars more and probably has half the battery life?

Of course if you have an unlimited budget and keep it plugged in all the time, its a no brainer.


Because if the guy uses AutoCAD which is happier with a quad, its stupid to go with a dual.

And actually a I7 QM is actually pretty good on battery life for a quad. Better than the 920 that people shoved into laptops.
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December 6, 2009 10:23:35 AM

cjl said:
The mobile i7s shouldn't have half the battery life - the TDP is only 10 watts more, and they dispense with the northbridge. I would expect their battery life under load to be a bit less, but due to the capability to shut down cores and the significant power saving capability, I wouldn't expect the idle battery life to be much different from a Core 2.

Higher power consumption does not mean greater battery drain either. One has to look at efficiency to get a more accurate metric. If the i7 does 2.5x the work in the same time but draws 15% more power (just pulling numbers out of the air of course), it will finish much earlier and switch back to idle where it draws very little power, while the Core 2 will keep on draining the battery as it struggles to keep up. It will drain the battery faster, no doubt about it, but it will drain for alot less time.
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December 6, 2009 11:06:09 AM

That's presuming the same amount of work will be completed. It's also possible that the user would continue to run high load apps on the i7 until the battery ran out, resulting in 15% less battery life but getting ~2.2x the work done despite the shorter working time (using your values of 2.5x and 15%).
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December 13, 2009 12:45:31 AM

jimmysmitty said:
Because if the guy uses AutoCAD which is happier with a quad, its stupid to go with a dual.

And actually a I7 QM is actually pretty good on battery life for a quad. Better than the 920 that people shoved into laptops.



Thanks to everyone for the input. I will be on AC much of the time so battery life isn't as iimportant as having the raw power when I need it. I decided to go with the i7 820 QM even though it cost more. I didn't need to buy another copy of Word which partially offset the extra cost.
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