Confused about processors

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Ahroo, Jul 21, 2007.

  1. Ahroo

    Ahroo Guest

    I'm toying around with the idea of getting a new laptop for video editing,
    and am considering a Gateway NX860XL. Included in the base price is an
    Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7200 (2.00GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache). For
    $180 more, I can upgrade it to an Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7400
    (2.16GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache). However, I am very confused as to what
    these numbers represent and if the extra .16 Ghz is worth $180.

    My current desktop (which is several years old) only has a Pentium 4, 2.4
    Ghz processor so it would seem that a 2.0 or a 2.16 would actually be
    slower! Or does a Core 2 Duo double the speed so that 2.0 translates into
    the equivalent of a single processor at 4.0 and 2.16 is 4.32?

    I should point out that I am NOT planning to do any HD editing. Were it not
    for the fact that I want to be able to sit anywhere (including outside when
    the weather is nice) to work rather than being stuck inside in a hot room, I
    would be content to stick with my current, outdated desktop. So I don't need
    the biggest, fastest. newest..... In fact, I plan to have XP installed
    instead of Vista so I don't have to go replacing a bunch of software and
    peripherals!

    Any help in interpreting what these processor specs mean would be greatly
    appreciated!

    By the way, the laptop comes with NVIDIA GeForce Go 7900 GS Graphics w/
    256MB DDR Video Memory - any comments on how this would be for video
    editing?

    Thank you.
    Ahroo, Jul 21, 2007
    #1
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  2. "Ahroo" <> wrote in message
    news:iUmoi.23615$...
    > I'm toying around with the idea of getting a new laptop for video editing,
    > and am considering a Gateway NX860XL. Included in the base price is an
    > Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7200 (2.00GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache).
    > For $180 more, I can upgrade it to an Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7400
    > (2.16GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache). However, I am very confused as to
    > what these numbers represent and if the extra .16 Ghz is worth $180.


    No.not unless your time is extremly valuable, and lets face it, if your were
    a billionaire
    you would not quibble over $180. It's at best 8% faster, you won't notice
    the
    difference.

    >
    > My current desktop (which is several years old) only has a Pentium 4, 2.4
    > Ghz processor so it would seem that a 2.0 or a 2.16 would actually be
    > slower! Or does a Core 2 Duo double the speed so that 2.0 translates into
    > the equivalent of a single processor at 4.0 and 2.16 is 4.32?


    The clock speed is slower however the pentium was a poor design and made
    little use of the faster clock other than to generate heat.
    Either new processor will be about 3 to10 times faster than your pentium
    depending on the appkication.



    >
    > I should point out that I am NOT planning to do any HD editing. Were it
    > not for the fact that I want to be able to sit anywhere (including outside
    > when the weather is nice) to work rather than being stuck inside in a hot
    > room, I would be content to stick with my current, outdated desktop. So I
    > don't need the biggest, fastest. newest..... In fact, I plan to have XP
    > installed instead of Vista so I don't have to go replacing a bunch of
    > software and peripherals!
    >
    > Any help in interpreting what these processor specs mean would be greatly
    > appreciated!
    >
    > By the way, the laptop comes with NVIDIA GeForce Go 7900 GS Graphics w/
    > 256MB DDR Video Memory - any comments on how this would be for video
    > editing?
    >
    > Thank you.
    >
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 21, 2007
    #2
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  3. Ahroo

    Paul Guest

    Ahroo wrote:
    > I'm toying around with the idea of getting a new laptop for video editing,
    > and am considering a Gateway NX860XL. Included in the base price is an
    > Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7200 (2.00GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache). For
    > $180 more, I can upgrade it to an Intel® CoreT 2 Duo Processor T7400
    > (2.16GHz, 667MHz FSB, 4MB L2 Cache). However, I am very confused as to what
    > these numbers represent and if the extra .16 Ghz is worth $180.
    >
    > My current desktop (which is several years old) only has a Pentium 4, 2.4
    > Ghz processor so it would seem that a 2.0 or a 2.16 would actually be
    > slower! Or does a Core 2 Duo double the speed so that 2.0 translates into
    > the equivalent of a single processor at 4.0 and 2.16 is 4.32?
    >
    > I should point out that I am NOT planning to do any HD editing. Were it not
    > for the fact that I want to be able to sit anywhere (including outside when
    > the weather is nice) to work rather than being stuck inside in a hot room, I
    > would be content to stick with my current, outdated desktop. So I don't need
    > the biggest, fastest. newest..... In fact, I plan to have XP installed
    > instead of Vista so I don't have to go replacing a bunch of software and
    > peripherals!
    >
    > Any help in interpreting what these processor specs mean would be greatly
    > appreciated!
    >
    > By the way, the laptop comes with NVIDIA GeForce Go 7900 GS Graphics w/
    > 256MB DDR Video Memory - any comments on how this would be for video
    > editing?
    >
    > Thank you.
    >
    >


    The Go 7900 GS uses about 20W of power (in 3D mode). Video editing, will run
    it in 2D mode. Most of the benefit of a GPU of that class, would be in gaming.

    http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=237

    The clock speed of the processor, cannot be directly compared to a Pentium of
    the past. First of all, you have dual cores, and programs vary as to how they
    will use them. Photoshop for example, has some filters that use both cores
    simultaneously. Each core works on half of the picture. Some of the other
    filters are single core only.

    For video editing, you'd want the editing tool to be modern enough to use
    both cores if possible. The other possibility, is you can do some kind of
    rendering with one core, while doing some other productive work with the
    other core. That is "user level multitasking", to take advantage of the
    two cores.

    To a first order approximation, the core clock speed is the sole determinant
    of performance. The other numbers you quote, are secondary issues, at the
    10% or less level.

    For clock rate, I'd multiply the core clock by a factor of 1.5 to 1.8,
    to get the Pentium equivalent. So a 2.0GHz core, would be closer to 3.0GHz
    on an old Pentium 4. And you have two of them, which in some circumstances
    doubles the performance. (With the software I run, I'd seldom see the
    doubling of performance, since most of the software I own will only
    use one core. That is why "doubling" because there are two cores,
    is a tenuous thing.)

    I'd say it will be faster than your old Pentium. But that is as far as
    I'd go in trying to quantify it. The way all these processor architectures
    work, is some programs benefit quite a bit, and others not as much, so you
    simply cannot compare all applications and expect the same performance
    multiplier. For example, a Sandra floating point benchmark doesn't seem
    to like the Core2 at all, and the floating point scaling factor for that
    benchmark only seems to be 1.0 . Integer scaling is closer to 1.8 .

    The cache helps decouple the processor, from the slower main memory subsystem.
    Your old Pentium could have had 512KB, while the dual core has 4MB total.
    Maybe that will help sometimes. Not every application benefits from cache.

    The FSB rate quoted, tells you how fast the connection between the
    processor and the Northbridge is. The Intel desktop processors coming out
    on July 22, have FSB1333 front side bus. Your processor is FSB667, which
    is reasonable considering the processor is a mobile and draws 34W as it
    is. (The chipset supports a maximum of FSB667 as well.)

    I'd say, as laptops go, your choice is reasonably drool-worthy. I don't know
    what the battery life will be like. I expect you'll want to keep a power
    plug handy.

    I like Gateway's choice of 2GB of RAM, considering Vista is their OS. Once
    you get WinXP on there, that should be very nice to work with.

    Is there any chance you can preview the unit in person ? The one thing
    I'd be curious about, is what the screen looks like. 1920x1200 max
    resolution is pretty high. Even if you could look at another 17" display
    at 1920x1200, that should give you some idea what to expect.

    Paul
    Paul, Jul 21, 2007
    #3
  4. Ahroo

    Guest

    >With the software I run, I'd seldom see the
    >doubling of performance, since most of the software I own will only
    >use one core. That is why "doubling" because there are two cores,
    >is a tenuous thing.)


    Just curious, but if you are running more than 1 program at a time
    (perhaps running a full system virus scan while typing a Word Doc)
    will the computer use separate cores for each process? In other
    words, will it usually use a different core for different programs
    that are running simultaneously and are actually processing data or
    performing computing functions?

    GP
    , Jul 30, 2007
    #4
  5. Ahroo

    Paul Guest

    wrote:
    >> With the software I run, I'd seldom see the
    >> doubling of performance, since most of the software I own will only
    >> use one core. That is why "doubling" because there are two cores,
    >> is a tenuous thing.)

    >
    > Just curious, but if you are running more than 1 program at a time
    > (perhaps running a full system virus scan while typing a Word Doc)
    > will the computer use separate cores for each process? In other
    > words, will it usually use a different core for different programs
    > that are running simultaneously and are actually processing data or
    > performing computing functions?
    >
    > GP


    That is what discussions like this one suggest. By default, when a task
    starts, the tick boxes for all the cores are ticked, meaning the
    task can be run on any core. A user can interfere with the process,
    by forcing the task to run on a particular core. And with some games,
    sometimes doing that is necessary, due to performance issues like
    stuttering.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/219947-28-assigning-processors-talks

    I don't really know how the Windows Task Scheduler works, and what
    it takes into consideration. At least on the CPU graphs, sometimes
    you see a single task cause "squiggles" on both CPU graphs, as the
    task bounces back and forth. With a good OS, the task won't know
    what is happening behind its back. When you'll start to care, is
    if your favorite game stutters.

    Affinity can be assigned by programs such as "runfirst", if you
    want to make a shortcut to launch a particular program on the same
    core each time. A number of software designers have provided such tools.
    This is just one example.

    http://www.activeplus.com/us/freeware/runfirst/

    Paul
    Paul, Jul 30, 2007
    #5
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