How much Ghz do I really need?

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Pfs8b, Sep 20, 2008.

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  1. Pfs8b

    Pfs8b Newbie

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    i've been doing some store and online browsing (microcenter, best buy, online), and my needs are, i suspect, pretty limited. that being said, my current desktop crawls and i want my computer to be fast for the limited things i do and i don't want it to go out of date in the next couple of years. so with that in mind, i'll probably by a 64-bit computer b/c, well, why not? rather not end up buying something that's made obsolete in the near term. i understand my needs for RAM, but i really have no idea what i actually need for cpu ghz. One salesman at microcenter helpfully explained to me that, for my needs, the chokepoint will never be my cpu ghz, but instead will be the internet connection/speed. so, my QUESTION: how much ghz do i really need? i.e., for my needs, is there a difference between a 1.4ghz processor and a 2.2? i will never run a math program, crunch numbers, run a database program, and probably will never play a game on my computer. thanks much for any guidance.

    1) What is your budget?

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    ideally 14, but budget may push me to 15

    3) Please select your country's flag as a post icon and tell us what country are you buying this in.


    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?

    Don't know brands well enough to say

    5) What tasks will you be performing with the notebook?

    word processing, internet surfing, music, maybe pictures

    6) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places or leaving it on your desk?

    yes, i travel for work (this will be a personal computer, limited use for work), and i'd like to take it on plane

    7) Will you be playing games on it; if so, which games? no

    8) How many hours of battery life do you need? up to 4

    9) Do you mind buying online without seeing the notebook in person? not really, but i'd probably check out the brand at a local shop first

    10) What OS do you prefer? Windows (XP or Vista), Mac OS, Linux, etc.
    i'm open to windows xp, vista, or mac os

    Screen Specifics
    no preference

    11) From the choices below, what screen resolutions would you prefer?

    no real preference; i might watch the occasional movie, but not often

    12) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen?

    probably glossy, but no real preference

    Build Quality and Design

    13) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you? no

    14) When are you buying this laptop and how long do you want this laptop to last?

    i'd like to buy by Oct 1 and have it last at least 3 years

    Notebook Components

    15) How much hard drive space do you want; 40GB to 500GB?

    probably 160 is enough, but i'd buy up to 250

    16) Do you need an optical drive? If yes, a CDRW/DVD-ROM, DVD Burner or Blu-Ray drive?

    yes to dvd burner -- i backup music/software on dvds
  2. thebigpants27

    thebigpants27 Notebook Evangelist

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    I have a P8400 2.26ghz Core 2 Duo(the newest generation... the 45nm ones), 2 gb of ram, a 160gb 5400 rpm hd, and vista runs flawlessly. If you are looking for a machine that runs well and is reliable, i would check out the IdeaPad u330, Ideapad y510, Thinkpad R400, Thinkpad T400, Sony Vaio CS, Sony Vaio NS, Apple macbook.

    Those are all good cheaper options for you if your not gaming. The lightest of the bunch is the Ideapad u330 at 1inch thick and with a gaming card, etc it only weights like 4.5 lbs(i believe). In terms of the cheapest, that would be the vaio CS, NS, and Idepad y510.

    The most durable is the Thinkpad T400. The screen sizes are the u330 at 13.3 inches, the CS at 14.1, the T400 at 14.1, the R400 at 14.1, the NR at 15 inches, the ideapad y510 at 15 inches.

    They all have dvd burners... cheapest bang for your buck+lighest+most powerful for 1000 bucks is the u330. But, you can get the vaio CS with 3gb of ram, the p8400, AND a BLURAY drive for 1000. so good luck. They all have 160+ gb hardrives. Just make sure you get 2gb of ram or more...

    PM me if you have any questions! I just bought my notebook so ive done tons of research and don;t hesitate to give me rep points :D
  3. WarlordOne

    WarlordOne Notebook Evangelist

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    Are you going to be editing pictures or jusy archiving them? I'd say you'd be fine in the 1.5Ghz range unless you want to do photoshopping or ripping CD which would benefit from a 2ghz or so CPU.

    Either way I don't have a laptop to suggest because just about any basic or midrange notebook would do a good job fitting your needs. I would make sure you get a C2D and integrated graphics.
  4. roliax

    roliax Newbie

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    First of all I'd like to start out that with a laptop of that price range you're usually either look at either an Intel C2D T5750 (ghz) or amd Turion 70/80 (2.0/21ghz). That is more than sufficient in your needs. I am actually running an AMD Athlon x2 TK-55 1.8Ghz on a $350 Acer and it runs vista with areo flawlessly. I just want to mention also that the Athlon is an older family of processors which are slower/less efficient. It runs Warcraft 3 decently.

    You may opt for a faster CPU if you really want to run photoshop fast but I think you are going to be just fine. Just as the guy at Microcenter said, it's going to be your internet that will effect your internet speed rather than your cpu.

    Also, it would help ALOT if you reformat your hard drive or have some one else remove the bloatware from your computer. If you do not know how/have time/know someone, places like Best Buy can usually do it for $30. It's really worth it not to have random, useless things running in the background.
  5. allfiredup

    allfiredup Notebook Virtuoso

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    I can be a rather demanding "power user" at times, but I've never "needed" anything beyond a 2.0GHz Core 2 Duo, if even that. I currently have a 2.26GHz Intel P8400 and it's flies no matter I throw at it!

    I bought an HP Pavilion dv9000t in May '07 and it had a 1.66GHz T5500 processor AND a 256mb nVIDIA 7600-series graphics card. With a discrete graphics card to boost performance, the T5500 was plenty fast enough for average tasks.

    Hopefully, that will help you put some perspective on the choices that are available.
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