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Intel® Core™ i7-640M (2.8~3.46GHz, 35W) w/4MB Cache - 2 Cores, 4 Threads - 2.5 GT/s

SO i'm buying a new laptop, which i have not done in 6 years. So i am not familiar with any of these cpu specs. It was the highest option for intel for this laptop. So i am assuming it is somewhat fast. But i'd like to learn what these specs mean.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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why the repost? –  Arjan Dec 26 '10 at 21:02
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5 Answers 5

up vote 13 down vote accepted

If you want to learn what the specs mean, let's start by breaking down all the components as a starting point:

Intel® are the manufacturer.

Core™ i7 is the family of chips, it is the highest of Intel's current families (i3, i5, i7)

640M is the exact chip model.

2.8~3.46GHz is the chip's standard, and "boosted", frequencies.

35W is the chip's TDP (Thermal design power - the amount of power the cooling system in your computer should be capable of dissipating).

4MB Cache - This is the amount of L3 cache the chip has.

2 Cores - the number of physical cores that make up the processor.

4 Threads - using hyper threading, this is the number of virtual cores that your OS can use (each physical core is hyper threaded in to two virtual ones).

2.5 GT/s - is the maximum data transfer rate of the chip.

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Excellent answer, thank you for breaking it down like that a+! –  Kevin Dec 26 '10 at 20:05
    
what unit is T as in 2.5 GT/s? –  Felix Dombek Dec 26 '10 at 21:32
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@Felix Dombek : It's billions of transfers per second. See en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transfer_(computing) . –  houbysoft Dec 26 '10 at 21:44
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Specs here http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=49666&processor=i7-640M&spec-codes=SLBTN,SLBZU

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It has a standard clock speed of 2.8ghz, but will turbo boost to 3.46ghz when needed. http://www.intel.com/technology/turboboost/

It has 2 cores on one die, each core has hyperthreading technology, so this give you 4 available process threads for multitasking. Core means individual processor.

Dual core http://www.webopedia.com/DidYouKnow/Hardware_Software/2005/dual_core.asp

Hyperthreading http://www.intel.com/technology/platform-technology/hyper-threading/index.htm

Don't expect very good battery run time with this processor.

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Thank you for the resources. –  Kevin Dec 26 '10 at 20:07
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Intel Core i7 is intel's fastest desktop/laptop processor to date.

Your processor listed runs at 2.8Ghz as a dual core but can boost up to 3.46Ghz when it needs the power.

More information about the processor can be found here: http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Core_i7/Intel-Core%20i7%20Mobile%20I7-640M%20CP80617004152AE.html

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As an extra note, it is a good chip, you won't be disappointed with it. –  Sandeep Bansal Dec 26 '10 at 19:18
    
Thank you for your answer. –  Kevin Dec 26 '10 at 20:06
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Ok, each core represents a physical cpu, so 2 cores its like having 2 cpu's sandwiched in one, thats good because each are independent from each other, and each core can run from 2.8 to 3.46 ghz depending on the temperature, so if your cpu is kept cool it can run up to 6.92 ghz of pure processing power. Threads: each core can be divided in 2 threads, each running at half the core's speed. About cache, thats a temporary place holder for information to be proceeded, the more the better. Two cores are good for most multitasker users, for regular usage i mean.

I hope i've helped

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Here are some i7 specifications from Intel.

That should give you a starting point on where the cpu sits in the mix. Look it over and you can do a comparison as well.

Here are the exact specs for your mobile CPU: http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=49666&processor=i7-640M&spec-codes=SLBTN,SLBZU

Keep in mind, that mobile does not = desktop. There are slight differences (chiefly power usage) between the two (as well as model number differences).

Pick one that 'fits' your usage. Hope that clears some up.

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