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Centrino or Pentium 4?

By rliu ยท 19 replies
Mar 24, 2005
  1. What are the advantages a Centrino processor has over a Pentium 4 processor for use with laptops? I want more technical details than just Centrino is especially built for mobility and is more efficient.
  2. isatippy

    isatippy TS Rookie Posts: 497

    A Centrino might run a litte cooler but thats about it I think.
  3. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    If those factors are not important to you, what do you want a laptop for?
    Prime objective of a laptop is long battery life.
    Secondary is connectivity, and how easy can it be.
    Thirdly, the weight.
    If you really want a laptop, wait until the ATI PCI-Express equivalent comes out (very soon), combined with a 2GHz Centrino. Look at Samsung laptops for the longest battery life. Look at Sony for the prettiest with the longest life for a pretty laptop.
    'Nuff said.
  4. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +7

    In many cases yes, but not always.

    Laptop use varies considerably. Whilst you might favour long battery life, what does the person who carts the laptop back and forth between his or her office and home every day want? Maybe they never use it on the move, and always have a power outlet to plug it into. This person might prize weight (or lack of) as the main objective.

    In the desktop replacement market (people who just use a machine on their desks, but want it to be a cool laptop rather than an ugly desktop) probably don't care about battery life or weight. They probably care about specification - good processor, good memory, good upgrade path, lots of connectors, etc.

    If, on the other hand, you ARE an on-the-move laptop user, yes you DO care about battery life. You have also probably discovered that no matter how long the battery lasts, you always wish it lasted longer. So you buy an extra battery. And you have to carry that about with you too. So you prize battery weight (or lack of) as a main objective, as well as battery life.

    As some who is becoming increasingly laptop oriented, I can say that I want ALL OF THE ABOVE and more in my laptop. And that's a pretty hard thing for manufacturers to follow.
  5. Charles Hammond

    Charles Hammond TS Rookie Posts: 59

    No such thing as a Centrino Processor!

    Centrino refers to a type of chipset with wireless technology.
  6. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    Centrino is not a chipset, nor a processor, nor any such technology. Centrino is a marketing term. Only laptops that have the Pentium-M as CPU, the Intel 855M as chipset, AND Intel's PRO WLAN adapter, can have the Centrino logo

    P4-M at 2ghz will outperform a P4 Prescott at 3ghz in all things sans memory bandwidth, and it uses far, far far less power.
  7. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +7

  8. isatippy

    isatippy TS Rookie Posts: 497

    Cool!! :grinthumb
  9. rliu

    rliu TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 55

    So would you say Intel Centrino laptops are better for games than Pentium 4 3-3.4 Ghz laptops?
  10. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    That depends. A Centrino-labeled laptop with at CPU at 2ghz or more is going to give you an overall better experience, however the P4 @ 3ghz+ is still going to have way more memory bandwidth (at least more actual bandwidth).

    It also varies on what onboard video card there is. If you give us two laptops including specs to compare it to we could give you a better answer.
  11. isatippy

    isatippy TS Rookie Posts: 497

    P4 are way better for gameing.
  12. xmaxflix

    xmaxflix TS Rookie

    Centrino is far better than a P4 for a laptop. It's lightweight, has longer battery and generates less heat. This unit are for people that are always on the go.

    The LORD gives wisdom, from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding.
    ---Proverbs 2:6
  13. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    way to go Soul Harvester you said it.
    go with the moble chip it comes with 2mb cache
    check out the chipsets that will work with it
    does the 3.2 P4 have this?
    PS looking for cheap MB with the 855 chipset HaHa
  14. shadow_29

    shadow_29 TS Rookie Posts: 211

    hey rliu,as i see it the answer lies on 2 things first what are your need and second what is your budget.if you are purely looking for a portable gaming rig that would run doom3 and hl2 like a screensaver than you might want to check dell xps and other hardcore gamer dedicated manufacturers.the only downside to an xps and its like would first be its battery life which would be lucky to scrape off 45-50 minutes of real world performance,the other its weight.i think pentium 4 is better than mobility interms of gaming performance(i think its fsb is slower than p4's)so pentium m becomes a solution only when gaming isnt a big part of the equation and battery life and weight is.the biggest problem with pentium m chips is the video card that most of the oem carry 80%of them have onboard graphics like ati mobility or intel chipset,this is the most crucial thing for gaming,you might get your hands on radeon m 9200,9700 or geforce go 5200,5600 designed especially for laptops but still the performance boost would be nothing compared to a pure gaming laptop with geforce go6800.
  15. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    Yeah. The so-named Intel "eXtreme" graphics are anything but. Crap of the crap. Mobile Radeon and Mobile GFFX tend to be pretty decent, as far as laptop accelerators go.
  16. rliu

    rliu TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 55

    Which of these two is better than for gaming, excluding the Dell XPS because it is a bit pricey, an Acer Travelmate 8005 with 1.8 Ghz Intel M processor, 512 MB DDR SDRAM and ATI Mobility 9700 128 MB or a Fujitsu Siemens Amilo 1845 with 3.2 Ghz P4 processor, 512 MB DDR SDRAM and the same graphics card.
  17. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    The 3.2 p4 will definately have an edge. If you aren't expecting long battery life and are using this as a desktop replacement, the 3.2 will give you more raw power.

    Or you should just be very sneaky and get a mobile athlon 64 :D
  18. shadow_29

    shadow_29 TS Rookie Posts: 211

    well both of them are good for gaming but like soul harvester said p4 would give you an edge in gaming etc.however this shouldnt be the only concern,first of all you have to consider your budget and your mobility needs pentium m(centrino)is the only true notebook processor in this situation while the pentium 4 would classify it as a portable pc or a desktop replacement(a trade off between raw power and power requirement),then consider the brands acer vs. fujitsu and then the look and weight of it.

    an mobile amd 64 would be sweet but amd isnt a very good competitor in comparison to others in the notebook market.they will soon be launching a new chip designed specifiaclly for notebooks which is true 64 bit with help from via and other mobo manufacturers/oems,you can check them out at any site(thg,register) with is coverig cebit in hannover germany.
  19. splinterxcell

    splinterxcell TS Rookie


    hey guys... can i join in this? i am in a similar situation as rliu. .. i want a gaming laptop between like 1,200-1500 that can play games like battlefield, call of duty, army and such..
    does this cpu look like it would be good for gaming?

    Processor Brand: Intel
    Processor Class: Pentium M Processor
    Processor Number: 750
    Processor Speed: 1.86 GHz
    Bus Speed: 533 MHz
    Mobile Technology: Centrino
    L2 Cache Size: 2 MB
    Memory Speed: PC-2700 (333MHz)
    Memory Technology: DDR-SDRAM
    Installed Memory: 1 GB
    Maximum Memory: 2 GB
    Hard Drive Capacity: 100 GB
    Drive Controllers: IDE (Ultra ATA/DMA)
    Rotational Speed: 4200 RPM
    DVD Read Speed: Not specified by manufacturer
    DVD Write Speed: Not specified by manufacturer
    Additional Drives: DL DVD+/-RW
    Sound Support: Digital Audio (16-bit)
    Video Chipset Brand: Intel
    Video Chipset: Graphics Media Accelerator (GMA) 900
    Shared Video RAM (Max): 128 MB
    Resolution: 1280 x 768
    Display Size: 14.0 in
    Display Type: Active Matrix LCD (TFT)
    Port Connectors: 3 Universal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0
    1 Audio - Headphone-out
    1 Audio - Microphone-in
    1 Video - VGA (15-pin)
    1 Video - TV Out (S-Video)
    1 RJ-11 (modem)
    1 RJ-45 Ethernet (LAN)
    1 Expansion Port 2
    1 IEEE 1394 Firewire (4-pin)

    Card Slots: Memory Stick
    Memory Stick Pro
    SmartMedia Card
    Secure Digital(SD)/MMC
    xD-Picture Card
    (1) Type II / Type I CardBus
    Network Support: Ethernet (10/100 Mbps)
    Wireless Protocol: 802.11b
    Modem Speed: 56 Kbps
    Input Devices: Keyboard
    Battery Life (average): up to 3 Hours
  20. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,243   +446

    The CPU looks fine - but the video is going to be the real problem with that machine. I think you'll be hard pressed to get a decent gaming laptop for that budget. You'll need to raise that by a few hundred dollars at least IMO - and on top of that wait for one of those rebate specials to come up at the same time.
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