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How much processor speed do I need?

by Phreak Malik / November 13, 2008 11:36 AM PST

I'm looking to get a new laptop, something to replace my way too old Dell desktop. Right now I'm debating between the HP dv5t and the Dell Studio 15 or Inspiron 1525.

I've narrowed down what I really want (and can afford) for everything except the processor. I know that faster is better and that I should get as much computer as I can afford but how much do I really need?

The hp has a Intel Core 2 Duo T9400 (2.53 GHz)
The Dell's have either a Intel Core 2 Duo T5850 (2.16 GHz) or an Intel Core 2 Duo T8300 (2.4 GHz).

Will the 2.16 GHz T5850 suffice? Or should I go for the faster processor?

Any thoughts would be appreciated...

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by Renegade Knight / November 14, 2008 3:50 AM PST

So far I've found that 2ghz or better is fast enough for most all things and has been for the past few years.

RAM and Graphics have been the bottlenecks for some time.

My advice is to get the CPU speed that's in the sweet spot. Normally there is a list of speeds and there is a huge jump at one point. Get the one just below the jump.

That said Intel has come out with a new CPU that supports higher front side buss speeds. That chipset is worth getting as the faster RAM access will make a difference.

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Balance of power: Machine vs Batteries
by punterjoe / November 17, 2008 5:08 AM PST

For a desktop or a notebook that will almost always be on ext power this isn't a consideration, but if you plan to be on the road a lot, battery life may factor in when deciding how much performance you want. I guess you'd want to weight what you plan to do, how fast you want it done, and how you can tweak your system to offer a range of performance vs efficiency. Sorry to answer your question with more questions, but I learned the hard way that these are things best thought about before putting down your money. Silly

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