Question about "2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo"

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by superman666, Jun 25, 2007.

  1. superman666 macrumors regular

    Jun 25, 2007
    I come from purely windows computers, and have decided upon getting the 15" 2.4GHz MBP. I just had a stupid question that I've always wondered, which is what does the 2.4GHz duo mean... Like does it mean the computer will run at 2.4GHz x 2 (4.8GHz) ? I've always wondered this, because it seems like 2.4GHz itself would be kind of low. This relatively old PC I have now runs 3.00 GHz. But I probably just don't know what I'm talking about.
  2. basicfiend macrumors member

    Jun 13, 2007
    Intel Core Duo means that the CPU has two processing cores that operate in parallel, each one running at 2.4 GHz. The visible speed increase depends on how well the program takes advantage of the parallel processing capabilities of your computer. But it will roughly compare to a single core running at 4.8 GHz.

    In Intel Core 2 Duo, the 2 means that it's the second revision of the processor.
  3. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    You can't compare speeds in GHz across different processor lines. A single 2.4GHz core 2 duo core far out classes a 3GHz Pentium 4.
  4. basicfiend macrumors member

    Jun 13, 2007
    If you ignore memory bandwidth issues and slight machine code optimizations from generation to generation, then a 2.4GHz 2-core processor can perform as many operations per second as a 4.8GHz single core processor.

    What you really need is program-specific benchmarks, but that's the rough idea.

    The move from faster processors to multi-core machines is an engineering necessity. Intel and AMD are finding it impossible to fit more transistors onto a single core because of the clock skew that occurs in (spatial) large processors. Hence divide and conquer.
  5. zioxide macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2006
    The Celeron based on the Conroe core will probably outperform a P4 too. The core microarchitecture is much newer and better than NetBurst that was used in P4s.
  6. superman666 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 25, 2007
    heh, pretty interesting stuff to read. Thanks a lot for responding, i've always wanted to figure out what it meant.
  7. vtprinz macrumors 6502

    Nov 30, 2004
    As someone else mentioned, it's not a direct comparison. I guess it's easiest to think of the C2D as being more "efficient" than a Pentium 4. It was the same in the PPC days, with G4's and G5's typically having much lower GHz ratings but still having much better performance than the Intel processors of the time.

    On a side note, am I the only one that misses the simplicity of the PPC nomenclature? G3, G4, G5, simple, like it used to be with intel and the Pentium, Pentium II, Pentium III, etc. Now it just seems like Intel dishes out random names that give you no idea of where they are in the power hierarchy. Would a novice really understand whether a xeon, celeron, pentium, or core is better than the others? Then there are multiple versions of those processors. Pentium D vs Pentium 4, Celeron D, M versions, E versions, F versions. Don't even bother with the codenames. Clovertown? Merom? Santa Rosa? Woodcrest? Conroe? It's so easy to get lost in Intel-land these days.
  8. superman666 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 25, 2007
    Amen to that... I would much rather like the 'rising-numbers' technique than all these different weird 'planet-named' processors-types.
  9. scamateur macrumors member

    Feb 26, 2007
    Intel names

    The "internal" names Intel uses for its chips are those of rivers, rather than planets.

    Intel processors were widely known by their product numbers when they were 80286, 80386, and 80486. Intel switched to "Pentium" at the "586" point, precisely to confuse the succession of product for marketing reasons, and to create a trademark-able name. They further needed to make difficult direct comparisons between their models and AMD's competitors. They certainly have succeeded handsomely as far as the confusion goals are concerned.

    For much of the last decade or so, AMD made better high-performance CPU's. Only with the advent of the Core models has Intel been clearly the chip of choice.

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