although a dual core processor will function in an entertainment system, you can probably see better video quality with a quad core processor, DDR3 memory, PCI16x video card, (not on board video), I prefer a high end video card such as ATI 5870.
Now some people would say that it is crazy to go through all that quad core stuff to watch video. I think, after comparing the cheaper to the more expensive, that the extra money was worth it in video quality and sound quality. (many of the quad core boards have surround sound on board)
I compared the high end video card to the less expensive, and I thought the quality was noticeably better with the 5870, especially watching streaming video.
So if I could pay for it I would go for the quad core.
the video card is supposed to process the video.
what you are feeding the quadcore processor that requires that much processing capability?
are you using four cores instead of two to keep the latency down?
the video program usually sends the video to the graphics card for processing.
sends the audio to the soundcard for processing.
any buttons or controls on the user interface would require the main processor.
you dont need a quadcore for that.
even if you are using the quadcore to reduce latency, probably a custom video player made yourself, you can use post-processing to get the same output.
from the time you press play until the time the video starts will increase.
its like having a buffer, because it is a buffer.
to the original poster..
dual core can be considered two physical cores.
it can also be considered the old technology name used for intel processors.
core2duo is much faster than their old 'dual core' processors.
if you are talking about two physical cores, the speed is dependant on the processor's design.