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Celeron Processor

Posted on 2013-12-02
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I am thinking about purchasing a new laptop with Intel® Celeron® Processor 1005M (3M Cache, 1.90GHz) w/ 4GB of RAM. When Celeron CPUs were introduced (10+ years ago), I remember purchasing one and found out it was so slow and decided to NEVER buy it again.

But that was a long time ago and wonder how much Celeron has advanced. Is it better now?
As seen below, the more $ I spend, the faster processor I can get, but not sure if it all worth it.

Intel® Pentium® 2020M Processor (2M Cache, 2.40 GHz)         $50
Intel® Core™ i3-3120M Processor (2.50GHz, 3MB L3 Cache)      $100
Intel® Core™ i5-3230M Processor (3M Cache, up to 3.20 GHz)   $200

I am going to use the laptop 99% of the time surfing the Internet, You Tube, Word/Excel/Access. So I may be able to get away with Celeron ... but because my son plays "League of Legends" occasionally, I was not sure if this Celeron will be adequate.

Thanks.
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Question by:sglee
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Andy M earned 308 total points
ID: 39689817
It's been a while since I last used a Celeron processor myself, though the wife's computer does have one and she's had no issues with performance for what she uses it for. They're not too bad for internet browsing, office applications, etc but may struggle a bit with gaming like League of Legends (especially if you're running a lot of background programs).

If you are going to need the system for gaming (even if it's only occasional) and you can afford the cost I would probably go for the i5 processor personally but it really depends on your budget - the i3 may also be sufficient for the game but I've never played it so not sure on how intensive it is.
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by:garycase
garycase earned 608 total points
ID: 39690350
Any of the modern Core-architecture Intel CPU's will give you plenty of performance for the usage you've outlined.   It's even fine for your son's game, although the graphics demands of the game may be an issue.   Note that while the integrated Intel graphics aren't as good as most dedicated video cards, the newest of these are good enough for modest gaming ... especially the HD4000 on the i3-3230M you're considering.

Here are the Passmark scores (CPU "horsepower") for each of the system's you're looking at, and the type of graphics adapter they have integrated.    While you likely don't need the extra "oomph" in the CPU, the better graphics capability of the 2500 (and especially the 4000) would definitely be an improvement in gaming performance.

Celeron 1005M - 1904   HD Graphics
Pentium 2020M - 2320  HD Graphics
Core i3-3120M - 3293   HD2500 graphics
Core i5-3230M - 3995   HD4000 graphics

The base HD graphics in the Celeron and Pentium is nowhere near as good as the later generation 2500 and 4000 versions in the i3 and i5.   Your gaming son would be far happier with the i3 or i5 :-)
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by:garycase
garycase earned 608 total points
ID: 39690359
... by the way, a Celeron of 10 years ago would have scored in the 250-300 range on Passmark's CPUMark => even a 3GHz Pentium-IV only scores 361.   The switch to the Core architecture a few years ago was a MAJOR change in CPU performance.
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39690390
@Morty500UK & garycase
So it sounds like I won't regret buying Celeron CPU machine if it is for Internet/Word/Excel stuff. Remember how slow Celeron PCs used to run? It was unbearable compared to Pentium.
With today's Celeron, say if Celeron CPU takes 5 seconds to open Internet/Word/Excel and i3/i5 takes 4 to 5 seconds, to me that is negligible because they are both plenty fast for me.
But if it takes 1 minute to load OS on Celeron where it only takes 20/30 seconds on i3/i5, then it is something to think about.

Based on your opinion, I understand I would be better off buying either i3 or i5 for my son due to heavy graphics demand.
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by:garycase
ID: 39690632
You're correct -- for Internet/E-Mail/Word/Excel the Celeron is just fine.    It's even okay for basic gaming ... I'm not sure how intensive the game you noted is (I'm decidedly NOT a gamer).   But clearly the i5 would be the best choice for gaming needs -- the HD4000 graphics is a good enough integrated GPU that it outperforms a lot of the basic dedicated cards.
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by:nobus
nobus earned 304 total points
ID: 39691887
the above is correct
however, since you have "bad" memories about the celeron, i suggest not to buy it again.
anytime it gets a bit slow, you'll suspect the celeron as a cause
but you'll have to weigh the cost versus this argument for your decision
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Expert Comment

by:garycase
ID: 39691900
The Celeron of a decade ago is a TOTALLY different processor than today's.

A decade ago it was a hamstrung version of an already-flawed Netburst architecture CPU.   Today, it's simply a lower-end processor in the Core architecture lineup.   The processing power of the Celeron above is more than 5 times that power of the most-power P-IV ever produced !!  (and of course the Celerons of that timeframe were FAR less powerful).
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by:sglee
ID: 39692681
I appreciate all the input!
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