Question what are in order of importance the specifications of a CPU that matter most in light PC use? (office, meetings, Google)?

Nov 18, 2022
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hello, I should buy a laptop for a friend of mine, and I wanted to know if it is true that in such uses (absolutely not heavy) the architecture, the IPC and all the rest of the CPU counts more than the frequency and very large numbers of core.
 

Colif

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Well, if PC is just going to sit around and do nothing all day, there is no point having lots of cores that just sit around and don't do anything. Nor does it matter how fast they are... to a point. You don't want too slow as it gets in way of actually doing anything.

I probably wouldn't go below 4 cores/8 threads or you start to struggle doing anything

The rest of PC is more important in that case really.

I just did a 2 hour test and 1st question here feels like a continuation :)
 
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Aeacus

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For office PC, the metric (importance) would be:
  1. Single-core performance
  2. Dual-core performance
  3. Quad-core performance
Most office apps + web browsing uses single core, thus why single core performance would be #1.
Some apps can use dual core (two cores) and that is also something to look at.
While quad core (4 cores) are good when you run several apps at the same time and CPU has cores to assign to different apps.

The newer the CPU architecture - the better single-, dual- and quad-core performance.
E.g when comparing same SKU but different generation. Like i3-10100 (10th gen) vs i3-12100 (12th gen),
comparison: https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i3-10100-vs-Intel-Core-i3-12100/4075vs4126

Nowadays, even Core i3 has 4 cores and 8 threads, more than enough to any office PC. You might want to even look at Celeron or Pentium CPUs, for lower cost and core amount, but don't go too low/cheap.
 
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For office PC, the metric (importance) would be:
  1. Single-core performance
  2. Dual-core performance
  3. Quad-core performance
Most office apps + web browsing uses single core, thus why single core performance would be #1.
Some apps can use dual core (two cores) and that is also something to look at.
While quad core (4 cores) are good when you run several apps at the same time and CPU has cores to assign to different apps.

The newer the CPU architecture - the better single-, dual- and quad-core performance.
E.g when comparing same SKU but different generation. Like i3-10100 (10th gen) vs i3-12100 (12th gen),
comparison: https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i3-10100-vs-Intel-Core-i3-12100/4075vs4126

Nowadays, even Core i3 has 4 cores and 8 threads, more than enough to any office PC. You might want to even look at Celeron or Pentium CPUs, for lower cost and core amount, but don't go too low/cheap.
thank you very much:) I have last question:
About the iGPU of a laptop which receives the processed video from a more powerful desktop PC which acts as a virtual machine (the desktop does the calculations and the laptop only receives the video signal, such as streaming video or similar to cloud gaming ), on the iGPU which receives the signal already processed by the dedicated gpu (on the desktop pc) ROP, TMU, execution unit and shadow unit do anything in decompressing and reconstructing the data stream? which of these specifications does something in playing the video (processed and sent from the desktop PC)?

I ask this because I am comparing the Intel UHD Graphics iGPU (32EU) with the Intel Iris Xe Graphics (80EU) to figure out which one is more suitable to decide which cpu the (cheap) laptop on which I will use the computing power of my PC must have a professional landline (with rtx 4090). (Intel i5-12600hx has UHD, intel i5-12600h has Iris). And I don't know if the fact that Iris Xe has "3.4x more texture fill rate" and "3x more pipeline" would help in this case where the laptop only reports streaming video. and or already done stream (from dedicated gpu of the desktop PC)?
 

Aeacus

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(the desktop does the calculations and the laptop only receives the video signal, such as streaming video or similar to cloud gaming ), on the iGPU which receives the signal already processed by the dedicated gpu (on the desktop pc) ROP, TMU, execution unit and shadow unit do anything in decompressing and reconstructing the data stream?
If i understand correctly, then laptop is used as streaming PC, to upload the already processed video signal to the internet? :unsure:

If so, then there is no good way to receive the live video feed, for laptop then be used to upload it, other than using a capture card. So that laptop can accept the video signal. While what iGPU it has in it, matters little, only as to show the video stream on the screen. Whereby the entire CPU within laptop can be dedicated to streaming process.

Further reading from here, namely "PC #2: Dedicated Streaming PC" chapter,
article: https://www.logicalincrements.com/articles/streaming

While the article talks about streaming gaming, same can be applied to other video streams as well, e.g Google Meet/Zoom video streaming.
 
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If i understand correctly, then laptop is used as streaming PC, to upload the already processed video signal to the internet? :unsure:

If so, then there is no good way to receive the live video feed, for laptop then be used to upload it, other than using a capture card. So that laptop can accept the video signal. While what iGPU it has in it, matters little, only as to show the video stream on the screen. Whereby the entire CPU within laptop can be dedicated to streaming process.

Further reading from here, namely "PC #2: Dedicated Streaming PC" chapter,
article: https://www.logicalincrements.com/articles/streaming

While the article talks about streaming gaming, same can be applied to other video streams as well, e.g Google Meet/Zoom video streaming.
no, I don't have to stream, I just have to receive the video signal (processed by the desktop PC) on the laptop. This is because I have a landline with a 3090 and a €300 laptop, and I need to work on the laptop because I'm not always at home, but I don't do streaming or even gaming, but I program, work in the areas of AI, Deep learning and machine learning, and I do 3D rendering. The question remains the same
 

Aeacus

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Here's comparison between 32EU and 80EU iGPUs,
link: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Iris-Xe-G7-80EUs-vs-UHD-Graphics-G1-Ice-Lake-32-EU_10395_9871.247598.0.html

Now, the 80EU is quite a bit better than 32EU, by having a bit higher base and boost frequency and quite a bit more pipelines. The number of pipelines built into the GPU dictates in part how fast the video card can process data to the screen.
Further reading about GPU pipelines,
wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphics_pipeline

Did this answer your question?
 
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Here's comparison between 32EU and 80EU iGPUs,
link: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Iris-Xe-G7-80EUs-vs-UHD-Graphics-G1-Ice-Lake-32-EU_10395_9871.247598.0.html

Now, the 80EU is quite a bit better than 32EU, by having a bit higher base and boost frequency and quite a bit more pipelines. The number of pipelines built into the GPU dictates in part how fast the video card can process data to the screen.
Further reading about GPU pipelines,
wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphics_pipeline

Did this answer your question?
thanks, even if I was talking about the Intel graphics UHD 770 (12th generation processors), the one present on the i5-12600hx or on the i3-1215U. However if in case the Intel Iris Xe continues to be better than this Intel UHD 770 (for mobile) in bit rate and higher pipeline, that's fine with me, I will choose a laptop with that iGPU.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Windows itself always benefits from highly threaded performance, as there are always a significant number of processes running or engaged with performing tasks, so Windows running ANY office application would absolutely benefit from both stronger cores and more of them. To a point. And with mobile parts this is a much bigger question than with desktop parts because the majority of mobile parts still have fairly limited numbers of cores and hyperthreads.

What are you doing that you THINK you need a better than iGPU for? Because, there are no office applications, Google browser usages or virtual meeting utilities that require a high end graphics adapter. The 3d rendering, sure, that might definitely benefit to a great degree by having a higher end graphics adapter, even a discreet adapter, but it also matters quite a bit WHAT 3d rendering applications you are running, what you are DOING with that application, exactly, and whether the "doing" of them is highly time sensitive or not. Keep in mind also that the GPU isn't the only way to do this. CPU rendering is very much a thing as well.

Not sure what you mean by a "landline with a 3090"? In most countries, "landline" refers to a phone connection, not anything related to graphics adapters or computers aside from possibly dial up connections.
 
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Windows itself always benefits from highly threaded performance, as there are always a significant number of processes running or engaged with performing tasks, so Windows running ANY office application would absolutely benefit from both stronger cores and more of them. To a point. And with mobile parts this is a much bigger question than with desktop parts because the majority of mobile parts still have fairly limited numbers of cores and hyperthreads.

What are you doing that you THINK you need a better than iGPU for? Because, there are no office applications, Google browser usages or virtual meeting utilities that require a high end graphics adapter. The 3d rendering, sure, that might definitely benefit to a great degree by having a higher end graphics adapter, even a discreet adapter, but it also matters quite a bit WHAT 3d rendering applications you are running, what you are DOING with that application, exactly, and whether the "doing" of them is highly time sensitive or not. Keep in mind also that the GPU isn't the only way to do this. CPU rendering is very much a thing as well.

Not sure what you mean by a "landline with a 3090"? In most countries, "landline" refers to a phone connection, not anything related to graphics adapters or computers aside from possibly dial up connections.
I'm referring to the fact that I use the desktop PC as a virtual machine, which processes and sends the signal to the laptop. With this method hypothetically I could play at 1440p at 140hz ultra settings in god of war on the laptop with the integrated. And I wanted to know if the laptop iGPU in this case did something in receiving the video stream from the desktop PC, Eaco said that in this case it is the iGPU pipeline that works, the iGPU that receives the video signal (as happens on Netflix , it doesn't happen that to watch a 4K movie the gpu renders all the pixels as it would in gaming). For this reason I will opt for a laptop with a CPU that has an Intel Iris Xe iGPU (hopefully it has more pipelines than the intel UHD 770). Now the problem is just understanding how to search and find laptops on the market, I don't know if there is a sort of pcpartpicker, but with laptops, where you can set filters, for example the laptop cpu model, and it gives you the list of handsets, or an excel list or whatever. Now I'd be interested to know which laptops are equipped with these processors
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Newegg and Amazon as well as some others give you the ability to filter like that to a degree for laptops but to a much lesser degree than with PCPP since laptops are generally not entirely configurable. Sites like Clevo and others that actually allow you to custom specify parts might be better in that regard, but also a lot more expensive.

You can absolutely specify CPU and GPU type on Amazon under the laptops section.
 
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Newegg and Amazon as well as some others give you the ability to filter like that to a degree for laptops but to a much lesser degree than with PCPP since laptops are generally not entirely configurable. Sites like Clevo and others that actually allow you to custom specify parts might be better in that regard, but also a lot more expensive.

You can absolutely specify CPU and GPU type on Amazon under the laptops section.
on Amazon it only lets me set the manufacturer, Intel i5, the frequency and the number of cores, but despite this I can't find laptops with these processors, most of them have 11th or 10th gen cpu
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
You can specify in your search terms on the site. For example, search for "12th gen Intel laptop" and then refine by choice of i5, i7, etc., and by specific graphics adapter type, memory capacity, storage devices in the results.
 
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Here's comparison between 32EU and 80EU iGPUs,
link: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Iris-Xe-G7-80EUs-vs-UHD-Graphics-G1-Ice-Lake-32-EU_10395_9871.247598.0.html

Now, the 80EU is quite a bit better than 32EU, by having a bit higher base and boost frequency and quite a bit more pipelines. The number of pipelines built into the GPU dictates in part how fast the video card can process data to the screen.
Further reading about GPU pipelines,
wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphics_pipeline

Did this answer your question?
I should buy a laptop with one of these processors:
I5-12500H
I5-12600H
I5-1235U
I5-1245U
I5-1240U
I5-1250P
I5-1240P
I5-1230U
all 12th cpu with the Iris Xe (not the i7 because surely they will be more expensive, and my budget is 400-650 (max 700)
can I open a new thread where for help choosing a laptop or do I always ask here? I need help mostly because on Amazon it seems that there are no laptops with any Intel 12th, even an i3 (if there are, there are a couple and they cost 1000-1200 €). So I don't really know how to find them, there are no apps that allow you to filter precisely. It would be really great if I could know which are all the laptops that have all those cpu listed there, regardless of everything else (RAM, SSD, screen, etc.), and then I choose among those. But the problem is that I can't find them.
 
Look at sources other than Amazon that have better sorting capabilities. Newegg for instance.

You might be able to sort well at the manufacturer's site....HP, Lenovo, Asus, Dell, whatever you might buy.

Amazon sorting is not good as a rule.

Find candidates and get the full name and model number, all possible details.

Then go back to Amazon and see if you can find them.......if that is where you will buy.
 
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Look at sources other than Amazon that have better sorting capabilities. Newegg for instance.

You might be able to sort well at the manufacturer's site....HP, Lenovo, Asus, Dell, whatever you might buy.

Amazon sorting is not good as a rule.

Find candidates and get the full name and model number, all possible details.

Then go back to Amazon and see if you can find them.......if that is where you will buy.
Ok thanks:)
 
hello, I should buy a laptop for a friend of mine, and I wanted to know if it is true that in such uses (absolutely not heavy) the architecture, the IPC and all the rest of the CPU counts more than the frequency and very large numbers of core.
The state of performance of modern CPU's that for light duty use as described you probably can't go wrong.

I'd say look for long battery performance as a guide.
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
hello, I should buy a laptop for a friend of mine, and I wanted to know if it is true that in such uses (absolutely not heavy) the architecture, the IPC and all the rest of the CPU counts more than the frequency and very large numbers of core.
Your title questions, associated with a laptop, make me think of VERY different criteria. Keyboard and screen would be #1. Then RAM and storage. Last would be any CPU specs.
 
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Here's comparison between 32EU and 80EU iGPUs,
link: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Iris-Xe-G7-80EUs-vs-UHD-Graphics-G1-Ice-Lake-32-EU_10395_9871.247598.0.html

Now, the 80EU is quite a bit better than 32EU, by having a bit higher base and boost frequency and quite a bit more pipelines. The number of pipelines built into the GPU dictates in part how fast the video card can process data to the screen.
Further reading about GPU pipelines,
wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphics_pipeline

Did this answer your question?
in the end I decided, all I need is the choice between two laptops, so I ask you, again for the use described, very basic therefore: would you feel the difference between 8gb and 16gb of RAM? (On Windows 11). I know that 16 GB is needed in gaming, but for normal use, perhaps to keep a dozen Chrome, Word, Power point windows open, the archive with files, I think 8 GB is sufficient, even if it is a bit ' strict. What do you think about it? However I'm talking about absolutely not cheap laptops, so they are not accompanied by crap CPUs, however it seems strange to me that on one of these there are only 8gb. The 2 models are: https://www.asus.com/it/laptops/for-home/zenbook/zenbook-14-oled-ux3402/

 

Aeacus

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but for normal use, perhaps to keep a dozen Chrome, Word, Power point windows open, the archive with files, I think 8 GB is sufficient
Here, what the "normal use" means, differs.

To me, "normal use" is 1-2 tabs open in web browser, with 1-2 programs as well, e.g Word.
In this case, 8 GB of RAM would be enough.

However, the "new norm" today seems to be 10-20 or even more browser tabs open + several other programs: Word, Power Point, Discord, Zoom etc.
Due to the multitasking, 16 GB of RAM would be needed. Since with 8 GB, you can easily fill it with all the browser tabs alone, thus making the PC slow and sluggish.

Further reading: https://www.crucial.com/articles/about-memory/how-much-ram-does-my-computer-need
You'd classify as "intermediate user".
 
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Here, what the "normal use" means, differs.

To me, "normal use" is 1-2 tabs open in web browser, with 1-2 programs as well, e.g Word.
In this case, 8 GB of RAM would be enough.

However, the "new norm" today seems to be 10-20 or even more browser tabs open + several other programs: Word, Power Point, Discord, Zoom etc.
Due to the multitasking, 16 GB of RAM would be needed. Since with 8 GB, you can easily fill it with all the browser tabs alone, thus making the PC slow and sluggish.

Further reading: https://www.crucial.com/articles/about-memory/how-much-ram-does-my-computer-need
You'd classify as "intermediate user".
let's say that the programs I keep open I don't think are running, in this sense I almost always do one thing at a time. What I keep open are programs like: the file archive, a couple of Word documents, and 4/5 Chrome tabs, and that's it, I don't need to start more than 2 jobs at the same time, because either I scroll through the pages in Word , or I see 1 video on YouTube and that's it, or I write on the Word sheet without doing anything else with the programs open but stopped. In this sense, could 8gb be enough for me? Or is it a bit tight. My concern then is that with 8gb the computer will slow down in 4/5 years with the Windows 11 updates.
 

Aeacus

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DDR5 does have some benefits,
further reading: https://www.tomshardware.com/features/ddr5-vs-ddr4-is-it-time-to-upgrade-your-ram

As of which to go, 8 GB DDR5 or 16 GB DDR4, tough call. But i'd lean towards 16 GB DDR4, since while the DDR4 is slower than DDR5, it isn't by that much and multitasking fills up the RAM, quite a bit.

Even the old DDR3, at current date, isn't that slow. E.g my missus'es PC (Haswell, full specs with pics in my sig) is running DDR3 at 1866 Mhz and i can't tell a difference in RAM frequency, between her PC and mine (Skylake, full specs with pics in my sig), which runs DDR4 at 3000 Mhz. Nor does she, and she uses her PC for work (programming, loads of tabs etc.) Though, we both have 16 GB of RAM in our PCs.

My concern then is that with 8gb the computer will slow down in 4/5 years with the Windows 11 updates.
This, actually, is probable reality. Since newer software usually is more demanding, requiring more performance from PCs. Due to that, PC performance doesn't drop, per se, but since PC needs to put out far more, it makes the old system "slow and weak".

So, for future proofing, 16 GB would be better, despite being DDR4.

A bit of history:
When looking the RAM amount on gaming perspective, ~10 years ago 8 GB of RAM was the norm for any gaming build. Few years ago, 16 GB was the norm. While as of today, 32 GB of RAM is sometimes suggested for gaming rigs, especially when considering the new AAA titles, which require quite a lot of hardware performance and RAM amount.
For workstation use (3D rendering), the norm would be quadruple of what the norm is for gaming rigs. And for office use, norm would be half of gaming rigs.

Since 32 GB is currently sometimes suggested for gaming rigs, for office builds (like yours), i'd suggest 16 GB.
 
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Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
If this unit is meant to remain usably capable for you for another five years, I would get 16GB. It may not be necessary now but the memory requirements for practically everything has been climbing over the last few years and I don't mean just for gaming. Developers have gotten lazy and aren't optimizing for minimal specs like they used to, so I can fully see commonly used applications and programs as well as the OS itself steadily increasing during that time span and you don't want to have to ADD memory later, because that might create it's own set of problems with compatibility issues.

For example, Windows 10 only required 2GB of RAM for a 64bit installation. Windows 11 already requires 4GB as the minimum. I expect to see this continue to grow as time goes on so considering the cost of memory does not add that much to price of anything when going from 8 to 16GB, it makes little sense to not opt for more than you might actually need now, to avoid having problems later OR if you suddenly decide "Hey, I need to be able to somewhat resource intensive video editing or whatever it is that suddenly becomes a need" then you don't end up going "dammit, I knew I should have opted for more memory". Just my two cents on that.
 
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If this unit is meant to remain usably capable for you for another five years, I would get 16GB. It may not be necessary now but the memory requirements for practically everything has been climbing over the last few years and I don't mean just for gaming. Developers have gotten lazy and aren't optimizing for minimal specs like they used to, so I can fully see commonly used applications and programs as well as the OS itself steadily increasing during that time span and you don't want to have to ADD memory later, because that might create it's own set of problems with compatibility issues.

For example, Windows 10 only required 2GB of RAM for a 64bit installation. Windows 11 already requires 4GB as the minimum. I expect to see this continue to grow as time goes on so considering the cost of memory does not add that much to price of anything when going from 8 to 16GB, it makes little sense to not opt for more than you might actually need now, to avoid having problems later OR if you suddenly decide "Hey, I need to be able to somewhat resource intensive video editing or whatever it is that suddenly becomes a need" then you don't end up going "dammit, I knew I should have opted for more memory". Just my two cents on that.
Thank you so much for your precious information, but in the end I chose the Intel variant with 8 Gb, for 2 reasons: 1 I realized that my use on the laptop is much more basic and doesn't actually require 16gb of RAM. 2 95% of the time (that 5% is if I ever happen to program or render on the laptop because I can't on the desktop) 95% of the time the Intel 8gn build will be slightly faster, since the RAM doesn't fill up, and the cpu is faster. 3 Intel motherboard has better network card, and I found Intel Iris Xe iGPU is very good when it comes to decoding, Matrix IA and streaming, what I need to use desktop PC (via Cloud/streaming) on the laptop. For this reason, if one day I have to do something else with the laptop, I can connect it to the desktop PC and use its performance. Now it will have to arrive next week, the only doubt is whether a 14 inch is good for office use, and above all for a laptop that is as comfortable as possible, I think so, I wanted to get it smaller, but I feel the doubt that it is too small, however I will probably use it everywhere except on the desk (on which I have a fixed monitor with a 34 inch monitor), even on the bed, for one thing, so I think that a 14 inch is the right size. What do you think, I don't know if 15.6" is already starting to become a little bulky for a laptop that must be comfortable. I don't know if you have an idea of the measurements, what do you think? It's the right size for what you need should I do? Or 15.6 inches could have been better. (I'm just asking out of curiosity, I've got it anyway, and it probably won't change that much either)
 

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