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I7 mobile question: dual vs quad core

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February 21, 2013 12:47:58 AM

I'm shopping for a work laptop and want to get as much power / performance as I can without going to Mac.

I was looking at some of the i7 options and was surprised to see that most of the smaller ultrabooks had i7 processors with 2 cores instead of 4 and only 4 Gb or Ram.

For the extra prices, it doesn't seem to be worth the extra costs, so I'm wondering if it's better to drop down to an i5 or go up in size/weight (which I really don't want to do) to get an i7 with 4 cores / 8 hyperthreading.

What is recommended? I'll be using Photoshop CS6 regularly and will sometimes use Premiere as well, along with the usual office programs / email (Outlook, Word, Excel, Quickbooks, etc.)

TIA,

Julie

More about : mobile question dual quad core

a c 152 à CPUs
February 21, 2013 1:07:59 AM

you'll really like how well the quad core works with abode stuff and the extra memory helps alot too.
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a c 480 à CPUs
February 21, 2013 1:16:39 AM

Ultrabooks are basically designed around a small/light design and relatively low power consumption. High power drain generally means short battery life unless you increase the size of the battery. That more or less cancels out the small/light design concept. Quad core CPUs uses a lot of power compared to dual core versions. I suppose most ultrabooks are equipped with only 4GB of RAM because RAM draws power so the more you have, the higher the drain.

If you want a quad core i7 then just look at some "regular" laptops. Ultrabook can be thought as "powerful for their size and weight". They are not as powerful as "normal" laptops can be because they run with less powerful 17w CPUs where as the typical laptop has a 35w CPU. The quad core i7 mobile CPUs use 45w. A pretty significant increase from 17w.

I believe a core i5 will be the optimal choice. The difference between that and a dual core i7 will likely be 1MB of additional cache and of course higher clockspeed. However, if you are after performance, then you will want a dual core i7 ultrabook.

If you are going to get a normal laptop, then by all means go with a quad core i7 CPU.
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February 21, 2013 5:28:37 PM

Best answer selected by jfk00ca.
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February 22, 2013 4:48:52 AM

Thanks for the input. I ended up opting for the Lenovo Thinkpad Edge 430 14" with a 17" quad core processor. It's bigger than I wanted, but I'll need the power so it seemed to be the best compromise in terms of size/weight/performance.
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a c 480 à CPUs
February 22, 2013 4:54:34 AM

jfk00ca said:
Thanks for the input. I ended up opting for the Lenovo Thinkpad Edge 430 14" with a 17" quad core processor. It's bigger than I wanted, but I'll need the power so it seemed to be the best compromise in terms of size/weight/performance.



WOW!!!

That's a huge processor. How did they fit a 17" CPU in a 14" laptop? Those Lenovo engineers must be geniuses.


:D  :D  :D 
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February 22, 2013 2:25:30 PM

The laptop is pretty thick, hope I am happy with it when it arrives!
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a c 480 à CPUs
February 22, 2013 2:41:25 PM

4.74lbs and 1.08" thick for a 14" laptop is about average.
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February 22, 2013 3:04:23 PM

I was comparing it to some of the 14" ultrabooks I was looking at... I do think the specs / size ratio are pretty awesome, which is why I decided to buy this computer!
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