Are the Intel Pentium D and Intel Core 2 Duo processors the same?


No. Pentium D is basically two P4 Netbursts on the same silicon. Core 2 Duos are newer, faster, and more efficient.

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  • FYI - I rolled back the edit, because the edited "at lower clock speeds" is what efficiency is about. – MDMarra Apr 26 '10 at 21:36
  • Pentium D is one of the worst CPUs Intel ever made. Core 2 Duo one of the best. (For its price, for its time, for its power usage, that is, all things considered.) – David Schwartz Aug 30 '11 at 18:27

Even though they share the same socket- Socket 775- and may run on the same motherboards, they are not the same.

The Pentium D uses 2 Netburst architecture CPU cores on separate dies (two chips, one package), each with a small cache, sharing a single "quad pumped" Front Side Bus of 533 or 800 MT/s throughput (4 x 100MHz x 2=Double Data Rate) for desktop processors.

First generation Smithfield Pentium D's used a 90nM process and have very high power consumption. Each core has a small 1MB Level 2 cache.

Second generation Pressler Pentium D's used a 65nM process and have a somewhat high power consumption. Each core has a moderate 2MB Level 2 cache.

All Pentium D's are 64 bit and some Pressler's support VT for advanced virtualization. Extreme Editions added Hyper-Threading.

The Core 2 Duo processors have two Core 2 architecture CPU cores on a single die, often sharing a large 2nd level cache up to 12MB in size. They have a much broader range of speeds, mfg processes and applications than Pentium D and were commonly available in many FSB speeds from 533 to 1333.

All Core 2 Duo processors are 64 bit and none support Hyper-Threading.

When given the option, always choose a Core 2 processor, even if it has a lower Megahertz rating. Even the lower-branded Pentium Dual Core (essentially a Core 2 dual processor with a smaller, shared cache) above ~ 2.0GHz will best top end Pentium D's in processing and power efficiency.

Both are considered obsolete, as Intel is phasing out the Core 2 architecture in favor of Core i3/i5/i7.

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  • Core 2 Duos don't have L3 cache. L3 wasn't a standard feature until the Nehalem i7 Quads. Also, a Core 2 Duo is not two Core architecture CPU cores one one die. It is two Core 2 CPU cores on one die. The Core architecture is the ancestor of the Core 2s and was only used in mobile platforms. – MDMarra Apr 26 '10 at 21:52
  • I used to use the Core vs. Core 2 distinction too, until both Wikipedia and Intel gave up on it. – kmarsh Apr 27 '10 at 12:35
  • Intel never gave up on it, the Core series of chips were EOL when the Core 2 counterparts were released. They were never meant to be competing technologies, but the distinction has always been there. – MDMarra Apr 28 '10 at 2:41
  • Like the term Pentium, "Core" (with no modifiers) is now used by Intel as a class of components, instead of a specific family. – kmarsh Apr 28 '10 at 12:34
  • @MDMarra Core 2 are the Core architecture. Core Solo/Duo are rebranded Pentium Ms, which have more in common with Pentium 3 than with any other processor. – kinokijuf Mar 4 '12 at 16:11

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