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For the purposes of video editing (in a notebook), is there a significant difference between Core 2 Duo (2.88 GHz) processor and a Core i5 (2.66 GHz), all other things being equal?

Or is it the case that for that particular use case other components play a more important role (e.g. the GPU)?

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Disk I/O is usually the bottleneck Having more than one drive is usually better. One system drive and a work drive – Dave M Oct 5 '13 at 17:53
It also greatly depends on the software that you're using. If your software takes advantage of GPU rendering, the CPU will have less effect on performance than which GPU you have. – kobaltz Oct 5 '13 at 18:14
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Check out Anandtech's benchmarks or for future questions like this. According to Anandtech, there's certainly a difference between the two. It looks like you'd save the most time when it comes to encoding, though you'll save time all around.

Note: They didn't have the exact Core2Duo you specified, so I went with the model one step better.

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All Core i-x processors have Intel HD graphics, which are better than those of Core 2 Duo (Intel GMA).
So, if computer has no videocard, then Core i5 has better graphics than Core 2 Duo.
Also Core i5 has more threads (usually >= 4 threads) than Core 2 Duo, which can help him.

BUT software defines everything:
If that program is designed to use more CPU and less GPU, then your 2.88GHz is better.
If it uses more GPU (for effects and editing) then Core i5 is better.
If it can utilize all CPU threads, then Core i5 will win here totally.

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@abeln , Can you tell which video-editor do you want to use?? – Jet Oct 5 '13 at 19:34

I'd say that the i5 as a newer CPU would be a slightly better option, but it does also depend on things like your editing software (if it's GPU accelerated) and your disk IO. If I were given the choice of using ffmpeg on a Core 2 Duo or a i5, I would pick the i5. But as my newest computer uses a 3 GhZ Pentium 4 HT, I envy your two far superior CPU choices.

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