How does a notebook with 1.73ghz Pentium M Centrino 740 stack up against a notebook with 3.0ghz Pentium 4 HT?

Posted on 2007-11-27
Last Modified: 2013-12-09
Will a 3.0ghz Pentium 4 HT notebook with 2GB of ram and 7200rpm HD perform as well as as a notebook with an Intel 1.73ghz Pentium M 740 Centrino with 2GB of ram and a 7200rpm HD?---I don't care about battery life, just the computing-power comparison between the two.

I know the Pentium M Centrino is designed to give extended battery life, but how do they match up with respect to "power-computing". I would be interested in hearing from those with direct ownership experiences of both types of processors... Just looking to give away some points for some good technical conversation on this subject.
Question by:jazjef
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I can't find a direct comparison ... but it's easy to extrapolate from what I did find & conclude that the Pentium M 740 system will easily outperform the 3.0GHz P-IV.

Here's how I reached that conclusion:

(1)  This article does a good job of comparing the Pentium M 740 with a Pentium-D 840 (a 3.2GHz dual-core Pentium-D):
Note in particular their conclusion that the Pentium M 740 can "... just about hold its own against a 3.2GHz Intel Pentium D 840 ...".    Look in particular at the SYSMarks on page 3 ( )

... from the above, you can see that a Pentium-D 840 outperforms the Pentium M 740, but not by a large amount => and the Pentium M 740 comes remarkably close considering it's a single core CPU competing agains the dual-core 840.    The 840 is only 4% faster in data analysis, and no more than 35% faster in any of the scores (the average is about 20% faster).

HOWEVER, the CPU you want to compare it to is a single-core 3.0GHz hyperthreading Pentium-IV.   So ... look at the relative CPU mark benchmark here comparing a 3.0GHz P-IV HT CPU (the 530) with the Pentium-D 840:

The 840's score of 5300 is 40% higher than the 530's score of 3797.   Unfortunately the Tom's comparisons don't include SYSMark scores ... but the SYSMark is very heavily driven by CPU performance, so it's a reasonably good comparison tool.

So consider the following results:

      ... the Pentium-D 840 is about 40% faster than a Pentium 530 (a 3.0GHz HT P-IV)

     ... the Pentium-D 840 beats a Pentium-M 740 by 4% to 35% on varying tests, with an average of about 20%

Conclusion:   The Pentium-M 740 will easily outperform a 3.0GHz Pentium-IV HT CPU like the Pentium 530.

The difference won't be dramatic --> but the Pentium-M 740 system will clearly be faster.   In addition, it will run cooler (likely to improve reliability) and have better battery life (which you don't care about).    If, however, the Pentium 530 (or equivalent)-based system is appreciably less expensive, the modest difference in performance may make that a system worth considering.

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thanks garycase....this was exactly what I was hoping someone would post. EXCELLENT insight/research....

I was aware of the pcstats Pentium M performance article, but the insight into the TomsHardware comparison gives me the information that I wanted. I was wanting someone to interject an objective opinion outside my own and you have done that.  I currently use the P4 HT 3.0ghz configuration (Averatec 6130HS) and just purchased a Pentium M 1.73ghz (Averatec 4270-EH1) under the assumption that it would perform on a comparative level with respect to computing-power alone----however, I just needed a 'nudge' of objective insight to make me feel a bit more relaxed with the purchase. I can't wait to test them out side-by-side. I have been wanting a second laptop that was comparable to my P4, that didn't run as hot....  Do you have any recommendations about benchmarking programs (that are preferably 'free') for my side-by-side comparison?

Also, I can personally say that P4 HT notebooks do run hot... and the Averatec 6130HS has a rather poor cooling fan/system to boot, so it runs hot above/beyond most P4 notebooks. I am hoping to turn this Pentium M into my main notebook and 'beat the heat'......

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garycase earned 500 total points
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The problem with benchmarks is that they can vary quite a bit depending on what type of applications they are testing => that's why the benchmarks noted above in the pcstats article vary from 4% to over 35% difference.   But a good general purpose CPU-focused benchmark is CPUMark ... a free download at

This will give you a good feeling for the relative CPU performance between the two systems (I'd expect the Pentium M to handily beat the 3.0GHz Pentium).   Post your results here ... it'd be interesting to see how they actually perform with this benchmark.

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Haven't received the 1.73ghz notebook yet but the seller said I should get it this week. I'll then try some benchmark tasks on each and post the results..... I'll give you the 500 too... I can't find anything that says your research is inaccurate----everything you said is 'dead-on' accurate according to what I'm reading out there.


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