It is very easy to mix up between a dual core and a core 2 duo processor due to the confusing and similar phonetics, especially by the new users. However, there are quite a few differences between the two.
Here in this article you will find all those major differences that will help you a great deal in differentiating between a core 2 duo and a dual core processor.
In This Article
- The overclocking ability as well as the size of the cache memory in a core 2 duo processor is usually higher than a dual core processor.
- All core 2 duo are dual core processors but the converse is not true.
- The bus speed and pipeline storage capacity of the dual core processors are usually higher than a core 2 duo processor.
- The core 2 duo processors are not as power efficient as the dual core processors due to their higher TDP.
15 Differences Between Dual Core and Core 2 Duo Processor
Dual core is the generic name of the processors that come with two cores in them on a single silicon chip.
On the other hand, the name core 2 duo is given by Intel to those processors that belong to their second batch of dual core CPUs.
The dual core processors come under the multi-core processor category.
However, in comparison, the core 2 duo processors fall under the category of extensive versions of dual core processors.
The dual core processors are much better in comparison to all other single core processors when it comes to performance.
On the other hand, the core 2 duo processors are better in terms of performance in comparison to the dual core processors due to their better overclocking ability.
4. Cache Memory
In general, the Level 2 cache memory of the dual core processors is 3 MB, while, in comparison, that of the core 2 duo processors is double than that, being 6 MB.
5. Overclocking Ability
In the dual core processors the overclocking ability is approximately 3.12 GHz.
On the other hand, you can overclock the CPU up to 4.0 GHz in a core 2 duo processor.
All core 2 duo processors are dual core processors as well but, conversely, all dual core processors are essentially not core 2 duo processors.
A dual core processor is much cheaper when you consider the available specs and speeds in the prevailing market. This is because the dual core processors are actually the relegated versions of the core 2 duo processors.
On the other hand, the cost of the core 2 duo processors is a bit on the higher side because these are the advanced versions of the dual core processors.
The dual core processors, just as the name signifies, execute all operations by using its two cores completely.
On the other hand, the core 2 duo processors can carry out several tasks at the same time due to its high overclocking ability and high clock speed.
9. Bus Speed
The bus speed of a dual core processor is usually 200 MHz while in comparison, that of the core 2 duo processor is 133 MHz.
10. Pipeline Storage
The pipeline storage of the dual core processors is 20 while that of the core 2 duo processors is 14.
The dual core processor is older in comparison to the core 2 duo processors and supports an older technology which puts it at a disadvantageous position.
On the other hand, though the architecture in which two cores are on the same processor is vaguely the same, that of the core 2 duo processors is more modern and advanced than the dual core processors.
12. Heat Generation
The dual core processors produce less heat in comparison to other previous versions of them.
However, on the other hand, the core 2 duo processors produce even lesser heat when compared with the dual core processors.
13. Power Efficiency
The dual core processors consume little power due to its outstandingly low TDP making it more power efficient.
In comparison, the core 2 duo processors are not as power efficient as the dual core processors.
14. Maximum Thermal Design Power
The maximum Thermal Design Power or TDP of the dual core processors is significantly low at 15 watts.
On the other hand, with a maximum TDP of 65 watts, the core 2 duo processors are nowhere near the dual core processors.
15. Clock Speeds
The clock speed of the dual core processors is quite acceptable, being about 2.33 GHz in the best situations.
On the other hand, the core 2 duo processors in the higher end can attain a higher clock speed of up to about 3.33 GHz.
Which is Better – Dual Core or Core 2 Duo Processor?
Since you know the differences between the dual core processor and core 2 duo by now, you have a fair bit of idea about which among the two is better.
However, the eventual choice will largely depend on your convenience, computing needs and other factors.
Though it will be unwise to label one as the best and discard the other completely since they both differ in features and functionality, here are some other facts and factors that will help you to make your final choice.
Now, take a look at some of the merits and demerits of the two processors.
Typically, a dual core processor allows easy multitasking since the processors, in spite of being linked, perform their functions separately but simultaneously.
It can carry out 64 bit instructions and also supports hyper threading.
For example, if you are listening to music and playing a game at the same time, one processor will handle the music listening aspect and the other one will manage your game play.
The dual core processors typically use two different types of buses to transfer data across the processor.
These are namely the Front Side Bus or FSB and the HTB or the Hyper Transport Bus.
Out of the two, the Hyper Transport Bus is more useful because it can increase the clock speed since the bandwidth is not shared between the CPUs.
The dual core processors also come with a few notable features that are quite useful for processing data and performing specific computing tasks.
Some of the benefits provided by the dual core processors due to these features include its consumption of less energy while operating and a much better performance of the caches.
Another significant benefit of it is its lesser occupancy of space due to the combination of the two chips onto one single Integrated Circuit or IC.
Most importantly, the design of the dual core processors is more stable and is ideal for multitasking. It is also quite reliable and user friendly.
Now, the dual core processors also have some advantages and disadvantages over a single core and a multi core processor which is also good to know at this point.
For example, when you compare a dual core processor with a single core processor, the most significant advantage of it is that it will offer a much better and faster performance in comparison to the single core processor.
The main reason behind this is that the processor can split the data for processing with the help of different units and can move the data through different types of threads.
And, when you compare the dual core processors with the multi-core processors, the former will offer an outstanding battery life since it has superb clock speed.
However, here are some of the disadvantages of a dual core processor.
When you compare them with a single core processor, the clock speed can be an issue because it will be significantly lower in a dual core processor while performing a single task sometimes for some specific programs.
This is because some programs may not run smoothly on a dual core processor as those would in a single core processor.
Also, at times, the consumption of electricity in a single core processor is much less as compared to that of a dual core processor.
When you compare the same with a multi-core processor, the major disadvantage of a dual core processor is that it will not be able to manage multiple jobs at once while the multi-core processors will do it easily.
This is because these processors have more cores and threads in them.
Moreover, the dual core processors are known to produce more heat as compared to a single core processor and are also more expensive than them.
And, when overloaded, the performance level of a dual core processor may drop significantly.
On the other hand, here are some of the good things and not-so-good things about the core 2 duo processors.
Typically, the Pentium M micro architecture makes the pipelines shorter in comparison to old Netburst architecture of the Pentium 4.
As a result of this architecture, the performance per clock is notably high in these processors while the maximum clock rate is low.
Some of the main features of the core 2 duo processors include the 64-bit support offered and the shared Level 2 cache.
It also comes with partial Intel Virtualization Technology, an M socket, and an execute disable bit.
All these features along with its design and build makes the core 2 duo processors pretty fast allowing it to handle most of the multitasking and multithreaded operations quite efficiently as compared with even some high-end dual core processors.
And, most importantly, there is a lot of headroom apparently for overclocking in these specific types of processors.
However, the cost factor of these processors can be a bit of a concern for ones who are on a budget.
Still, the core 2 duo processors will offer better performance for a higher cost.
A core 2 duo processor will be a better choice if you want better functionality and want to perform more processor-intensive tasks.
It will help in running more complex programs and apps on your computer easily and smoothly.
On the other hand, if you use your computer for routine and simple computing tasks involving internet browsing and using simple apps such as MS office, then a dual core processor will offer a decent enough performance as well as value for money in that case.
Now, with all these facts known to you, you must have a better understanding to make a comparison between the two processors should you have to make a choice between a dual core and a core 2 duo processor in future.
Nevertheless, the bottom line is that you should make your choice with an eye on the future which clearly indicates that the core count is in and clock rate is out. The final choice is of course yours.
Making a choice between two given processors is not an easy task, especially for the beginners who are seldom aware of the differences between them.
Thanks to articles like this one, things are made easier for them by letting them know the differences and even which is better among the two.