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Quad or dual for new laptop used for 3-d graphics

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Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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August 16, 2011 7:13:05 PM

Hello,
I'm wondering what would be better for a new laptop. I currently have an imac with 3.06ghz intel dual core and 4 gb ram. Its from 08' so the ram is topped out. I'm thinking about getting a laptop to run the software and be mobile. I use Cinema 4d and Mudbox for the modeling. The laptop Im thinking of getting is:
Processor: 2.0GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7
Memory: 8GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2X4GB
Hard Drive: 750GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm

Does anyone know if this would be faster then my current setup when it comes to rendering out video or if I'd be better with another setup on a laptop? Keep in mind I need it to be MAC.

Thanks for any suggestions and help!!
Erocks5
a c 572 D Laptop
August 16, 2011 7:38:05 PM

Hello erocks5;

Definitely a step up in CPU power.
Here is a big list of laptop CPU benchmarks with a few desktop parts in the mix for comparison.
(make sure the Show desktop and notebook CPUs option is active. Use the Restrict button if you need to change it.

I7-2630M is ranked #19, i5-2400 desktop quad core is ranked #5, Core 2 Quad (Desktop) Q9550 is ranked #24 and desktop Core 2 Duo E6850 is #50, etc.

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August 16, 2011 8:18:11 PM

Thanks for your help WR2. I just wanted to make sure if I am going to spend the money that it will be worth it. I know my desktop right now gets bogged down when i hit a few hundred thousand polygons on a model but I have watched people do millions of polys without a hiccup. It drives me crazy when your in a good flow on a model and the computer decides its tired... lol
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a c 572 D Laptop
August 16, 2011 9:04:00 PM

CINEMA 4D supports Hyperthreading. I just don't know how effective that is in actual performance.
You could be looking at an upgrade from 2 cores / 2 threads to 4 cores/ 8 threads.
Let us know how it works out when you get a chance.
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August 16, 2011 9:39:13 PM

WR2 said:
CINEMA 4D supports Hyperthreading. I just don't know how effective that is in actual performance.


This is the old "your mileage may vary". In Toms benchmarks and in some real world tests, a quad core with slower clock speed than a dual core will still outperform it. It all depends on how the software operates. If you know in advance that your software will utilize more cores/threads then you are probably better off with a quad core.

For home use the decision used to be the same- dual core with fast clock speed or quad core with slower clock speed, but not anymore. We have plenty of very fast quad core processors. They cost a little more and they use more power, but I've found that they work better sometimes even if you aren't doing things that you know will utilize multiple cores. My CAD workstation has a dual core at 3.8GHz, my home computer has a quad core at 3.4GHz. I occasionally find that I am doing one thing in one window, running plots in another window, etc. and the dual core machine slows way down, but I have yet to slow down the quad core machine.

The laptop is a harder choice though because you still have to battle lower battery life and more heat output with the quad core. However it sounds like a quad core would work out for the OP.
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