What is the Best Processor for Laptop | Intel Core i3, i5 and 7 processors

What is the Best Processor for Laptop ? Intel Core is the name that has been using Intel for its micros since 2008 or so. To better understand what each of them has to offer, we need to know the development cycle that this manufacturer uses and which they call tick / tock . This way of developing the micros has two phases one is called tick and the other tock: What is the Best Processor for Laptop


What is the Best Processor for Laptop ? Intel Core is the name that has been using Intel for its micros since 2008 or so. To better understand what each of them has to offer, we need to know the development cycle that this manufacturer uses and which they call tick / tock .What is the Best Processor for Laptop | Intel Core i3, i5 and 7 processors

This way of developing the micros has two phases one is called tick and the other tock: What is the Best Processor for Laptop 

Tick. Micros are nothing more than small functional blocks that connect with each other. If we can reduce the size of these blocks we can perform more tasks using the same hardware. When Intel ticks, what decreases is the minimum size you can use to create the transistors that are the basic blocks, the bricks with which these devices are created.

Tock. The architecture of a processor is the map that defines the elements that compose it and how they interconnect each other. A different way of distributing the blocks can make the micro behave in a totally different way.

Well this is not how Intel works, first it reduces the size of its transistors and then improves the architecture or adapt the needs it wants to meet. What is the Best Processor for Laptop ?

First generation

The first generation Intel Core are replacing the Core 2. Not all Core first generation are the same since in 2008 there was already some i7 , in 2009 appear the i5 and in 2010 the i3 . As you can understand the architecture of an i7 of 2008 does not have much to do with that of a 3 of 2010.

There are versions that use lithographs of both 45 and 32 nanometers. Among the improvements with respect to the previous micros are that they add the memory controller inside and that they have the graphic card integrated in the same encapsulate. What is the Best Processor for Laptop

Second generation

It is a tock, ie a new architecture.

It appears in early 2011 and its codename is Sandy Bridge . Added AVX instruction set, designed to accelerate the processing of images, sound and 3D. Other instructions such as AES used in cryptographic programs are also added.

Its lithography is 32 nanometers and the graphic card is added inside the micro. 10% to 20% faster than the previous generation . Especially allows overclocking , so much that many users have skipped several updates thanks to this.

Third generation

What is the Best Processor for Laptop ? There is a reduction in size, specifically at 22 nanometers, it is a tick, its code name is Ivy Bridge . Almost does not improve performance at the same speed, only between 1-5% gain. About a 20% gain in the graphic section. Adds support for PCIe 3.0.

Above all, consumption is reduced. DirectX 11 support is added and the level three cache size is increased .

Fourth generation

What is the Best Processor for Laptop ? It is a tock and its codename is Haswell . Intel is trying to improve energy efficiency thinking of not losing market share of portable devices. Above all, consumption is reduced when the equipment is not used.

Between 5 and 10% improvement in the number of instructions per clock cycle.

As in each of the new generations is especially noticeable in the integrated graphics card. The included in these was twice as fast as the one you found in a second generation micro.

New instructions such as AVX2 and FMA3 are added for video and sound coding. In addition TSX is added for the creation of applications that take advantage of the cores of the processor. The enthusiast version brings support for DDR4.

Fifth generation

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? It’s a tick, it’s reduced to 14 nanometers, its code name is Broadwell . They are half as small as in the fourth generation. It follows the path set by Haswell in terms of consumption.

Less than 5% improvement over Haswell at the same clock frequency. The fifth generation core are those that have brought the DDR4 memories to the public.

Sixth generation

It’s a tock, it hits the market almost at the same time as Broadwell and is called Skylake . Adds technologies like the configurable TDP designed for 2 in 1 equipment and tablets.

Follow the path of adding new sets of instructions like the AVX3.2 Less than 5% improvement at the same clock speed.

Intel Core Processors Third or Fourth Generation, Which one to buy?

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? Intel processor maker at the beginning of June launched its new Fourth Generation Micro Core, hitherto known by its codename Haswell .

Expect, as it could not be otherwise, great things about this new family of micros. However Intel surprised everyone with a few processors thought more for the mobile environment than for what had until then been central objective of the company that were desktop PCs .

To better understand what these microphones are, let’s start with some history:

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Ivy Bridge. Third Generation Core processors is what Intel calls a “tick” in its tick / tock design process . This means that with respect to the previous series the manufacturing process has been improved and that the internal architecture has not been touched at least not substantially.

It goes from using a gate width of 32 nanometers to a 22 nanometer. In this way two can be included in the same area where there was only one before. It is possible, therefore, to add more elements and blocks of computation making the micro have a greater benefits.

Intel specifically calls this generation as “tick +” because it not only leverages to improve the manufacturing process but also improves the integrated graphics card, very important for mobile devices, where the manufacturer has always had a great ballast.

Haswell. Fourth Generation Intel Core processors are what Intel calls a “tock” ie a redefinition of the internal architecture of these devices.

At the time of design you can focus on making a team faster, or more energy efficient. Intel thinking of the market for tablets, smartphones where it is behind schedule based on ARM designs decides that this generation will be redefined thinking only of these devices.

Above all, it reduces consumption when the device is not used, essential for mobile devices that are mostly waiting to be used but at the cost of increasing consumption when you are using it. This may sound like a contradiction. Also of course improvement, and in what way, the internal graphics to allow greater performance.

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How are Third and Fourth Generation Core Processors similar?

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? These are some of the elements that both groups of processors have in common:

Nuclei. By using the same manufacturing technology in transistors in both generations the number of cores was not wanted to vary so you find identical models in this regard.

Cache. The size of the level three cache memory is one of the most important aspects when defining the processor you are buying because it is related to the features that will be able to offer you. As with the number of cores Intel has decided to keep it constant.

Frequency of operation. Both the third and fourth generation processors offer the same characteristics in terms of operating frequency .

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How are Core 3 and 4 Generation Differentiated?

Here are some of the differences:

Computational efficiency. Haswell manages to process between 5 and 10% more instructions than Ivy Bridge at the same operating frequency. Nothing to shoot but something is something.

Instruction set. The new micros implement certain instructions designed to accelerate applications such as games, image processing or video coding. In this case the best is expected of up to 25%, but the problem is that it needs the program designers to use them.

Consumption. The power consumption of both processors has nothing to do. Haswell is able to reduce the expense that he makes on hold but at the cost of increasing it when you are using it. This leads to a paradox and is that the Fourth Generation micro have a TDP or maximum consumption greater than the Ivy Bridge.

Socket. Sockets using both micros are different thus forget about buying a motherboard for Ivy Bridge and then upgrade to Haswell. In particular Haswell’s socket for desktop PCs is known as Socket H3 or LGA 1150 and the Ivy Bridge, LGA 1155.

Integrated graphics card. The integrated graphics cards consume much less than the discrete ones and if they are inside the processor we are talking about even more energy efficiency. So Haswell has focused on improving the performance of the previous generation in this element.

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Who should buy an Intel Third Generation?

As it could not be otherwise the arrival of the Fourth Generation Core has brought a fall in the price of thirds which makes them more attractive for many users.

Totally recommended for example for those who like games because with what you save you can invest more in the graphics card. It is also a serious choice for those who use it just to navigate or with Word programs since you will not notice the differences in performance.

Who should buy an Intel Fourth Generation?

Obviously for anything that sounds mobile. For example it is ideal for tablets or laptops.

When the applications make use of all the new instructions surely they will be micros much more advisable.

I5 or i7 Third Generation, which to buy

Intel considers Ivy Bridge as a “tick +” since apart from the improved manufacturing process it also makes changes in certain parts of the micro especially in the integrated graphics card

It will be in the next generation of Intel, the Fourth Generation Core when the manufacturer improves the internal architecture.

How can you distinguish them?

Intel Core i5 and i7 processors use the following nomenclature i5-3XXX, i7-3XXX, which makes it fairly straightforward to differentiate them.

There are four i7 processors, which are second generation or Sandy Bridge , in which Intel has used the same numbering: the 3970X, 3960X, 3930K and 3820. So be careful not to give you a cat for a hare.

How are they alike?

To make this comparison I will compare two processors the i7-3770 and the i5-3570, with a price difference of $ 132.

Nuclei. Both have 4 complete cores inside.

This is more than enough for almost any workload. Unfortunately, there are few applications that can take advantage of more of them.

Frequency of operation. Although the maximum operating frequency they can achieve thanks to Turbo Boost is different, the basis is exactly the same 3.4 GHz .

Instruction set. Both have the same set of instructions . Among other processors , AVX supports the acceleration of certain multimedia processing and AES applications that are used in cryptography.

Consumption. Both have a TDP or theoretical maximum consumption of 77 Watts. This is one of the biggest improvements due to the change in manufacturing technology.

Integrated graphics card. Although the integrated model is different, features like Quicksync or supporting up to 3 monitors at the same time are common to both.

What is the difference between them?

Threads. The i7 has support for Hyperthread and the i5 does not. This means that the operating system will see 8 cores in i7 and 4 in i5.

This technique simulates having 2 virtual cores for each of the real ones. This way you can offer 8 instead of four to the different programs.

Cache. The i7 has 8 Mega Cache Level 3 for the 6 Mega I5. In this case we have a clear winner.

The memory system of a PC works hierarchically, that is, we have several levels ranging from the processor to the hard disk , through the RAM . Only within one of these micros have we already 3 levels. It will be the processor in charge of having the data that are used the closest to the cores thus causing the performance to increase.

This element will make all kinds of applications benefit, not like Hyperthread for example, which is a feature that will only be used on certain occasions.

Graphic card. The i7 in this case comes with the model HD 4000 for the 2500 that has inside the i5. The first one is at least twice as fast as the other.

Turbo Speed. The i7 reaches 3.9 GHz by 3.8 GHz that the i5 can work.

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What advantage is gained by Hyperthread?

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? The fundamental difference between an i7 and an i5 is the Hyperthread. The advantages you can get are:

Fewer locks. Although it is very difficult to saturate a processor with 4 cores may be some cases.

Speed. Higher speed when dealing with certain 3D imaging applications like 3D Studio, application of filters on photographs with programs like Photoshop, video editing in utilities like Cinebench but never reaching the benefits that would give you 8 cores.

Which one to buy an i7 or an i5?

If you care about the budget and you are going to use it to play an i5 with a better graphic card is better option. The i7 is only designed for those who have no problem spending and only seek performance.

The i7 is a great processor without a doubt but justifying such a high price is complicated especially when you can spend the budget difference in RAM, an SSD hard drive or other improvements .


I7 Laptops. All include the hyperthread technology that allows them to work with two tasks for each physical core . The finished models in QM and XM have four cores and M two. As you can understand the differences are quite large between the two. However and as it could not be otherwise the M will have greater autonomy.

I5 Laptops. In this case we find two-core micros with hyperthread support.

I7 Desktop. All have four physical and hyperthreaded cores.

I5 Desktop. Desktop i5s lack hyperthread technology. They are by so many the only ones in this family that do not include it.

My recommendation on the desktop is clear choose only i7 if you need more benefits and you can afford it.

In addition to these differences the i7 include somewhat more cache memory and a higher operating frequency .

3rd Generation Core

Intel is able to improve the manufacturing technology of its micros, being able to create transistors of 22 nanometers by the 32 of its previous generation. Improvements in performance and consumption are sought.

These processors come with the codename of Ivy Bridge .

Same as above but the series U and Y are designed for ultrabooks and tablets that have two cores inside and hyperthread. Interestingly the i5 as the i7 designed for this type of equipment have the same cores. But the i7 have more cache memory and a higher frequency of operation.

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Fourth Generation Core

They are based on the new Haswell architecture . It improves especially the integrated graphics card .

The i5 for laptops, at least those appeared to date have four cores. Everything stays the same on the desktop.


If you are looking for a new computer that suits you desktop PC the difference is clear hyperthread and more than level three cache memory and some more operating frequency on some models.

In the portable models the difference is less clear getting to have models with double of nuclei of the same family.

What is hyperthread?

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? Hyperthread is a technology developed by Intel that allows a team to use each of its cores to perform two tasks at a time. .

For the operating system it is as if you have twice as many kernels working. The improvements are especially true in programs that use more cores or in those capable of giving problems due to blockages. The improvements range from minimum figures up to 20% faster.

Comparison with AMD

The closest thing to AMD is CMT but this technology replicates almost the entire core except the floating point unit so it is not exactly the same. It’s more AMD talks about complete drives not like Intel does.

Is it worth buying an i7?

For desktop PCs for most non-users. Only if you want the latter and you can afford it. The i5 segment is undoubtedly the one that gives better benefits at a lower price.

In the world of laptops is different because it comes into play the consumption of battery. It already depends on your needs because the spectrum is extended considerably.

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i7 Processor and Latest generations

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? On some models you will see 6 cores. In the version for portable PCs, however and to reduce consumption, it is possible to find models with 2 cores.

Hyperthread. All models have this feature by default. A physical core is able to simulate 2 virtual so that you can work with 2 tasks simultaneously.

Turbo Boost. It is very strange that an application uses all the cores of a processor simultaneously. This leads to the processor not using all the energy that can dissipate at a certain frequency. Turbo Boost , take advantage of this and accelerate only those cores that require the application with which you are working at a certain time.


Previous generation or first generation. The first to appear.

There are 3 models, based on the architectures Lynnfield, i7-8xx, Bloomfield, i7-9xx and Gulftown, i7-97x, i7-98x.

Lynnfield and Bloomfield were manufactured using a 45-nanometer gate width while Gulftown is a 32-nanometer processor. A smaller width causes them to be more energy efficient and may have more transistors in the same area.

All have 4 cores minus the Gulftown that have 6. Both as comments have Hyperthread.

All have cache of 8 megs less Gulftown 12 Megs. They do not include graphic card in the same processor as the following generations but if the controlled of memory and the one of PCI Express.

They support SSE 4.2 instructions, among others.

Second generation or Sandy Bridge. All versions of Sandy Bridge for desktop processors have 4 cores minus some versions for laptops that have 2. Only the 3930K has 6 cores.

There are versions for notebooks with 4 cores. Add a Q to its name and are a good recommendation for those seeking mobility and great features.

Memory cache 4 in portable versions up to 12 on some desktop.

It adds support for AVX instructions , Quicksync , integrated graphics card and memory controller .

The integrated graphics card models are HD 2000 or 3000 .

All these processors are manufactured using a transistor width of 32 nanometers.

Third generation or Ivy Bridge . Same as in the second generation in terms of cores. Ivy Bridge incorporates new 22-nanometer triple-gate transistor manufacturing technology.

Improvements are made to the graphics card in the integrated graphics card. Going from supporting Direct x 10.1 in the previous generation to Direct 11 in the new versions HD 2500 and 4000 .

Above all, apart from what has been achieved with the graphics card, improvements in consumption are achieved.

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Who is this processor for?

For someone who needs that power and can afford it. We are not before any processor is the best of the best. If your budget is limited always think that there are other elements inside the box of your PC that can be updated.

Is it necessary for a game?

A few years ago the games were associated with needing the latest in both graphics cards and processors. This has changed and now the element that can make these do not work as it should be the graphics card.

So if you have a game that does not just work investing in an i5 with a graphics card can be a very good option.

Skylake VS Broadwell processors

What is the Best Processor for Laptop? Intel creates its processors using a method that they call ” tick / tock ” in this way divide the process into two phases:

Tick. Manufacturing technology is improved , allowing smaller transistors to be manufactured . With each new tick Intel manages to reduce the area of ​​its transistors in half.

Smaller area means less power at the same operating frequency and more room to add more functional blocks. Sometimes, it is not normal, take advantage of this change to improve the existing architecture.

Fifth Generation Core processors are one tick and have made use of a 14 nanometer transistor manufacturing technology.

Tock. Completely redesigns the processor architecture.

With more or less the same number of transistors it achieves a more efficient design.

It is normal to see improvements of 5-10% of performances having the same frequency of operation. It is used to add support for new technologies.

Skylake or Sixth Generation Core are a tock.

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How are Skylake and Broadwell alike?

Both processors have the following in common:

Manufacturing technology. Well as I just said, both are created using a technology that allows to use 14 nanometers.

They are divided into the same families. We will have versions of both that will be divided into X, end, S for desktops, U for ultrabook and NUCs and Y for tablets.

Same number of cores. For example in desktop you will have four cores of maximum if we forget of the versions for enthusiasts in both generations.

How are Skylake and Broadwell different?

The differences are several:

New chipset. Broadwell will not need a new motherboard since it will work with the same ones as the Haswell micros , Skylake itself.

RAM. Skylake will be able to work with RAM , DDR3 and DDR4 . Modules up to 64 Gigabytes of memory.

PCIe 4.0. The new version of the PCI Express standard is expected to appear in Skylake’s extreme version by 2017.

Integrated graphics card. Skylake is expected to include several graphical iris pro models on some desktop processors. These cards have a built-in memory in the processor that acts as a level four cache accelerating both the processor and graphics operations.

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What is the Best Processor for Laptop?

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