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Thread: Looking for Computer Tech Clarification

  1. #1

    Default Looking for Computer Tech Clarification

    So I have an intel core i3-3217u 1.8 GHz processor in my laptop. There's a game I want to try out, but the minimum processor requirement is a core 2 duo 2.4 GHz processor. I've tried looking my processor up, seeing what it could handle in comparison, and I've got people saying that it's both slightly better and slightly worse. I was hoping someone rather tech savvy could help here... Can my processor handle what the Core 2 Duo can? Would installing this game damage my hardware if it couldn't handle it?

    All my other system specs meet or exceed the minimum requirements easily.

  2. #2

    Smile

    Comparing your i3 chip to the 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo SP9400, the i3 chip appears to perform better in several benchmarks. I've no idea how each chip would perform when running games, but I'd be reasonably confident that the i3 chip would be a fair bit better. They're a lot newer than Core 2 Duos, so probably have a more refined/advanced instruction set.

    I'd hate to get it wrong, but I'm pretty sure you'll be fine.

    Mobile Processors - Benchmarklist - NotebookCheck.net Tech

    Oh -- and don't i3 chips address memory more efficiently too...? (Curse my ageing memory!)

  3. #3

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    Comparing your i3 chip to the 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo SP9400, the i3 chip appears to perform better in several benchmarks. I've no idea how each chip would perform when running games, but I'd be reasonably confident that the i3 chip would be a fair bit better. They're a lot newer than Core 2 Duos, so probably have a more refined/advanced instruction set.

    I'd hate to get it wrong, but I'm pretty sure you'll be fine.

    Mobile Processors - Benchmarklist - NotebookCheck.net Tech

    Oh -- and don't i3 chips address memory more efficiently too...? (Curse my ageing memory!)
    That's a great source! Straight up comparison. I'm going to try it out, and worse case scenario i can uninstall it and/or do a system restore. I don't think with those numbers it will damage anything, at the very least. Thanks for that!

  4. #4

    Default

    No worries!



    Quote Originally Posted by SnowTrees View Post
    Would installing this game damage my hardware if it couldn't handle it?
    Oh -- I must have missed that bit! No -- you won't damage anything by trying to run a game your PC can't handle. It should be designed to run properly at maximum load, so the worst that will happen is that you'll get poor performance in the game.

    If you've overclocked your motherboard, or all your fans are clogged with dust, or the CPU has become dislodged, then your system might overheat. If that happens it should power-down to prevent damage. If it doesn't, your chip might burn! But that really, really, really is a worse-possible case scenario! Running a game should never break anything unless there's something seeeeriously wrong with your PC!

    If you're particularly worried, you can run software like SpeedFan, which shows you fan speeds and temperatures in your PC: SpeedFan - Access temperature sensor in your computer

  5. #5
    PaddedPuppy

    Default

    Just to go over what Tiny said, if you go into your BIOS (Usually by pressing F2 or DEL repeatedly as soon as you switch on your computer) and just take a look through some of the settings in there it should show "CPU Shutdown Temperature" Just make sure thats switched on, and no higher than the maximum operating temperature of your processor as listed on the Intel website (105c) then no, no damage would be caused by your system. That isn't really necessary but just if you want to take extra care it may be worth looking at.

    If you don't really know much about computers, don't edit anything in there. If you change it to something your system doesn't like it may stop working.

    Anyway yes an i3 is generally going to perform much better than Core2Duo. With a game though, my worry wouldn't be with the processor, but with the graphics card. That is where computers will usually fall short of requirements.

  6. #6

    Default

    As a general note, the clock speed (e.g. 2.6 GHz) isn't the only factor that affects the amount of work a processor can do (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megahertz_myth). Another factor is something called instructions per cycle (IPC) which in simple terms says how efficiently it uses the clock speed to do things. You can run the same number of calculations taking the same time with either a lower IPC and faster clock speed, such as the core 2 duo, or a higher IPC and a lower clock speed like the i3.

    That's why the 4th gen i7 processors only have a top clock speed of ~3GHz, but are far more than only 25% more powerful than a core 2 duo 2.4 GHz as the clock speed alone would suggest. There's other stuff like hyper-threading and parallel processing that I don't know much about, but the bottom line is clock speed alone isn't a great comparison. A useful website is Compare Cpus where you can put in two processors and it compares the test results of both against each other, as well as giving you all the specifications.

    I'd say the i3 should have the processing power, but if you are running a game your graphics processing unit (GPU) is going to be your limiting factor. Unless you have a more expensive laptop you probably just have the integrated graphics on the i3, which will handle light things but nothing heavy.

  7. #7

    Default

    you should also be able to reduce the graphics and memory load through the game's settings.

  8. #8

    Default

    I somehow missed the graphics card factor... my laptop comes with an integrated intel 4000 GPU, and I looked it up for the game I want to try... it's borderline. I'll probably have to play on low settings, but eh, that's ok with me. Thanks again everybody.

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