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AMD E-450 versus Intel Celeron 867

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March 25, 2012 3:21:22 AM

Not sure if this is a question for the laptop forum or CPU forum, but here goes. My old laptop (Acer Timeline with SU2700 single-core processor) is on the way out with what I'm guessing is a bad wire going to the screen...if I don't have the laptop hinge open at the right angle, a vertical stripe of the screen shows lines or "static" or a solid color. (Six weeks before I graduate, too. :(  )

Anyway, I'm looking at the Lenovo X130e laptop, which you can get with an E-450 for about $520, or with the Celeron 867 for just $20 more. I imagine both of those will spank the SU2700, and part of me wants to get the AMD system just to be "fair" (besides the SU2700, I'm running an i7-2600K on my desktop). But the impression that I'm getting is that the 867 will be noticeably faster in the CPU department and almost as fast in the GPU department, for a price increase of about 4%. Also, I'm guessing that if I wanted to play around with Linux (which I very likely will), I'd have fewer compatibility issues with Intel than with AMD.

I've spent a bit of time searching for a comparison between these two chips, and while there's a good amount of information on the E-450, there's (not surprisingly) very little information on the Celeron 867. So, does anyone have any useful information on how these two processors compare, both in terms of CPU and (GP)GPU power? Priorities for day-to-day use from high to low will be: software development, dicking around on the web, doing Office-y stuff, maybe some light gaming.

Thanks,
An Old Fogie ;) 
March 25, 2012 4:39:02 AM

Wow, okay. So, if PassMark is a reasonable indicator of CPU ability, then the 867 outperforms the E-450 to about the same degree as the E-450 outperforms the SU2700. So, I guess the real question is, how do they compare in terms of graphics. For instance, I know that the 867 does not support DirectX 11, while the E-450 does; however, given the power of these chips, DX11 seems kind of irrelevant. If the AMD chip outperforms the Intel by 50% or so in the graphics department, it would still be in the running for me...so how does Intel HD graphics running at 350-1000 MHz compare to 80 Radeon cores running at 500-600Mhz?
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March 25, 2012 1:29:33 PM

Quote:
Priorities for day-to-day use from high to low will be: software development, dicking around on the web, doing Office-y stuff, maybe some light gaming.
Unless your priorities have changed, the Intel might be the better choice. Ideally go to a store and try both laptops.

http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/lenovo-thinkpa... - 3DMark06 = 2175
http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/dell-vostro-v1... (based on the 867) - 3DMark06 = 4622 which they consider bad for that class of system.
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March 25, 2012 1:39:38 PM

You will have to decide which is more important to you and your needs. The e-450's gpu will beat the celeron like it wasn't even there however there is a lot that amd didn't do right with this apu. I got the e-350 and know it's weakness well. The celeron's performance per core per clock will cream the e-450 and the memory controller like wise. So if you are into games the e-450 can and will struggle along but has dx11 support. The celeron will perform pretty well in tasks that favor the cpu.
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March 25, 2012 1:55:14 PM

No one is certain of the new Ivy Bridge mobile CPUs release date, April thru June I think depending on model.
The Ivy Bridge are promising much better video performance and power efficency/battery life, you might want to wait for reviews before deciding on purchase.
Light gaming means an A-series AMD laptop or Sandy Bridge with GPU at the moment.

How much battery life and what games are we talking?
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March 25, 2012 5:02:16 PM

GhislainG said:
Unless your priorities have changed, the Intel might be the better choice. Ideally go to a store and try both laptops.

http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/lenovo-thinkpa... - 3DMark06 = 2175
http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/dell-vostro-v1... (based on the 867) - 3DMark06 = 4622 which they consider bad for that class of system.
Actually, the x130e review is based on the E-300, not the E-450, and the Vostro V131 is based on the i5-2410M. ;)  It's all good, though; it's hard to find valid comparisons when the system I'm looking at comes with four different processors and the only other laptop that I can find that uses the relevant processor comes with two other processors, too. Laptop shopping is kind of a pain in the rear end. :??: 

I found a review ( http://www.laptophug.com/2012/03/laptops-review-lenovo-... ) giving the 857 a 3DMark06 score of 2444, which beats out the E-300 at 2175. What that tells me is that the E-450 and 867 are going to be just about equal when it comes to graphics, which pretty much settles the matter for me, I guess...far better CPU and equal GPU for $20 seems like kind of a no-brainer.

nforce4max said:
You will have to decide which is more important to you and your needs. The e-450's gpu will beat the celeron like it wasn't even there however there is a lot that amd didn't do right with this apu. I got the e-350 and know it's weakness well. The celeron's performance per core per clock will cream the e-450 and the memory controller like wise. So if you are into games the e-450 can and will struggle along but has dx11 support. The celeron will perform pretty well in tasks that favor the cpu.
Actually, based on 3DMark06 scores (and yes, I know that it's a synthetic test), the difference in GPU power will probably be close to negligible. Couple that with the difference in CPU speed and presumably better Linux support...

walterm said:
No one is certain of the new Ivy Bridge mobile CPUs release date, April thru June I think depending on model.
The Ivy Bridge are promising much better video performance and power efficency/battery life, you might want to wait for reviews before deciding on purchase.
Light gaming means an A-series AMD laptop or Sandy Bridge with GPU at the moment.

How much battery life and what games are we talking?
Well, let's put it this way. Right now, I'm mostly playing d2x-rebirth on a GTX 570, which strikes me as a situation one might reasonably describe as "overkill". On the other hand, my current laptop, slow as it is, has no problem handling classic UT. I think the most graphically-intensive game I've really played was Portal 2. Basically, I'd like to be in a position where if some coworkers were all, "Hey, you wanna get together and play some games tonight?", I could handle, say, Team Fortress 2, Counterstrike, maybe UT3.

I've noticed that, on Steam, the Mac recommendations for the first two are HD 3000 graphics (which the Celeron technically isn't) and the minimum processor speed for a PC for UT3 is 2.0 GHz on a single core (which the Celeron also isn't). On the other hand, a Sandy Bridge core is quite a bit faster per clock than a Pentium 4 or even a Core 2, so it might be fine. The truth is, I don't know, so I'm asking. :)  We're talking a screen at 1366x768, though at 11.6", dropping the resolution down to 720p or even lower is probably not going to make a huge difference.

The battery life on the X130e is quoted at eight hours; I've seen tests suggesting that under normal use one might reasonably expect to get over seven. That's plenty good enough for me. Long battery life is somewhat of a priority for me; that's why I bought the Acer Timeline, two and a half years ago. I suppose it'll be less of an issue when I graduate and am not spending all day at school, but I am still very attracted to the idea of not having to worry about packing the power cord if I head off to the library or a coffee shop for however-many hours.

I know IVB is coming out in a few months (that's why it's like, "Why do you have to be dying NOW?!"). I suppose I might just borrow somebody else's laptop (it is an option available to me) and stick it out for the next six weeks, and then buy an IVB/Trinity laptop...but on the other hand, I find myself attracted to the X130e, and I suspect it (or its successor) won't be hitting IVB anytime soon, so...meh, yeah, I don't know. :( 

Thanks for all the input so far. :) 
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March 25, 2012 5:02:52 PM

walterm said:
No one is certain of the new Ivy Bridge mobile CPUs release date, April thru June I think depending on model.
The Ivy Bridge are promising much better video performance and power efficency/battery life, you might want to wait for reviews before deciding on purchase.
Light gaming means an A-series AMD laptop or Sandy Bridge with GPU at the moment.

How much battery life and what games are we talking?


I can say a few things about A and E series amd laptops. The e series sip power but amd overvolts the crap out of them ruining battery life but undervolting can bring up to an hour or more of extra battery life. The A series is the same way but when only on battery and not gaming underclocking and undervolting the cpu can extend battery life by about an hour. I've tested an SB i5 laptop and battery life wasn't so good.
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March 26, 2012 6:21:13 PM

Any thoughts on TF2 or UT3 on this machine? Or are even these less-intensive games beyond its reach? Maybe I should be asking this over in the GPU section, come to think of it... :) 
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March 26, 2012 6:44:45 PM

The gpu side of the E-450 is pretty decent compared to the one in the celeron but neither are really decent even for older and light weight games.
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April 3, 2012 9:21:08 PM

All right, well, thanks to all who posted. :)  I made the call today to go with the E-450 version of the X130e. In the end, it was a little bit of research, a little bit of speculation, and a little bit of not wanting to make Intel three-for-three with my most recent CPU purchases. Gotta keep both teams in the game, after all. :D 

While it was going to be pretty obvious that the Celeron was gonna smack down the E-450 in terms of CPU power, the situation on the GPU side was a bit less obvious. It seems that the SB Celeron chips only have six EUs compared to the 12 EUs in the regular i3, i5, and i7 lineup, with all the fancy graphics technologies chopped out.

Source: http://semiaccurate.com/2011/03/21/intels-sandy-bridge-...
Source: http://ark.intel.com/compare/59798,63918
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_Celeron_micr...

So, given that you can't ever exactly say that half the cores provide half the power, it still seems like it might be a fair assumption to say that the graphics in the Celeron are only about half as good as those in the regular Intel HD 3000 graphics. Then, I needed to find a side-by-side comparison of HD 3000 and 6320M. Well, they're not quite side-by-side, but I found a website that ran the same benchmarks on both processors:

Source: http://compare-processors.com/intel-hd-graphics-vs-rade...
Source: http://compare-processors.com/intel-hd-graphics-3000-vs...

The four benchmarks are 3DMark 03, 3DMark 05, Windows 7 WEI, and Cinebench R11.5
6310M: 5700, 3600, 5.7, 7.4
6320M: 6500, 4500, 5.9, 8.5
HD 3K : 8600, 6400, 6.2, 8.8

So, yeah. If the Celeron is about half the HD 3K results, the E-450 looks like the winning choice as far as the GPU side of things.

I've been using a SU2700 single-core CPU (Core 2-based) laptop for a couple of years, and yes, it can definitely be frustratingly slow. That being said, given that the WEI CPU score for the E-450 is 3.9 (up from 2.9 for the SU2700) and it's dual-core, I feel like I'm probably going to be okay with it for everyday use.

Source: http://notebooksnews.com/hp/dm1-e-450-review/

Thanks again for all of your input. If anyone wants to know how it is, I'll be happy to post my experiences with it once I use it for a bit.
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July 18, 2012 2:35:20 PM

Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer said:


Thanks again for all of your input. If anyone wants to know how it is, I'll be happy to post my experiences with it once I use it for a bit.



I am looking at a similar decision, how are you feeling about the AMD?
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July 18, 2012 3:20:18 PM

cornasdf said:
I am looking at a similar decision, how are you feeling about the AMD?

I really enjoyed the X130e while I was using it; it did a great job getting me through the rest of my final semester and was overall just a fun machine to use. However, I did just sell it to a family member to fund the purchase of a T430; with the impending threat of Windows 8 upon us all, I felt a strong sense of urgency to acquire a more powerful laptop with a larger/higher resolution screen that would last me for several years.

With regard to the X130e specifically, like I said, I really liked it. The keyboard was a joy to use, the machine felt very sturdy (though perhaps heavier than I was expecting, which isn't necessarily a bad thing) and the screen was great (specifically the matte finish and the high pixel density). My main complaint with it would have been the trackpad. Downloading new drivers from Lenovo's site made a big difference, but the integrated buttons were just...not that great, to be diplomatic about it. I got used to it after a while (and of course you can use the buttons above the trackpad) but I won't pretend that it was a great design choice, because it wasn't. I found the battery life to be around six hours in normal use. (wi-fi on, web browsing, &c.).

As far as the E-450 itself, I will say this. Initially, I felt like the processor was just a bit on the slow and laggy side, but now I feel like there may be things on Lenovo's install of Windows 7 that are slowing the system down overall and reducing the "snappiness" of the computer's feel. I say that because I installed Windows 8 RC on the machine (granted, on an SSD, rather than the stock 7200RPM HD) and the performance was really smooth. I know Windows 8 is supposed to be more efficient, so I don't know if that made a difference, or if it was that there wasn't any Lenovo software running, or what. I didn't actually spend too much time trying to optomize the Windows 7 install and my sister doesn't seem to have a problem with the speed, so that's about all I can say on that.

About the graphics, I do have to report that they were definitely not fast enough for Unreal Tournament 3. I don't remember trying anything else (the occasion never arose) but while things like the original UT would run, the graphics just aren't really powerful enough for gaming.
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July 18, 2012 5:45:37 PM

great, thanks for the write up...
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January 8, 2013 6:47:17 AM

One thing to watch out for when comparing benchmarks is if you are comparing real GPU cores to virtual ones. Some integrated solutions use additional hardware in conjuction with the CPU cores to provide GPU-like functionality. Those machines score very high on CPU or GPU tests but fall apart completely when a real application loads both the GPU and CPU at the same time.
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