Core 2 Duo Vs. Dual Core

October 8, 2007

Best Chip Ever!As I wander around my place of employment (Office Max) selling electronic gadgets and computers to various people, I am always amazed at the sheer amount of misinformation man will share with his fellow man… or woman as the case may be. Probably my favorite is when people write checks out to Office Depot and then go on to ask why I can’t accept it. Here are a few choice quotes, as heard by me, in regards to computers and technology:

Girl 1: “So, um, can I like run a Mac program on this monitor?”
Knowledgeable Boyfriend 1:
“No babe, you need to get one of those iTune monitors that its compatible with… I’ll ask this guy if they have any of the touchscreen models…”

Codger 1: “Does it look like any of these computers have the Internet?”
Codger 2: “Nope. These guys never sell the Internet here… who would ever buy one of these computers without the Internet?”

Daughter 1: “Dad? Can I use a wireless mouse with my HP [laptop]?”
Dad 1: “No, it has to have a wire or the Internet will stop working on a laptop.”

Occasionally someone will come in with a slight misunderstanding as far as technology goes and I need to gently explain the nuances between the bits and pieces. One such example was with Intel’s naming scheme regarding microprocessors for a desktop computer system.

Many people understand the idea of ‘Intel Inside’… which means there is an Intel processor, inside your computer. Fairly straightforward. More recently though, the idea of Core processors (that is, Intel’s creation of two processors, or chips, on a single piece of silicon, or die) has been forcibly injected into the consumer’s mindset. It doesn’t help matters that Intel has released more than 4 different classes of Core processors, all with slightly similar names. In fact, one of the chip sets is called the Core 2 Duo… or basically, the Core 2 2, which must be a joke that the Marketing Department at Intel thought would be really funny.

If you are looking at computer systems and see a computer that has an ‘Intel Inside’ sticker and are wondering just what exactly is inside, I have a handy little list for you to use for reference. Feel free to print this out and distribute it to all of your friends:

GPF Guide To Intel Processors
(Newest to Oldest)

  • Intel Core 2 Extreme: so fast its un-affordable; active
  • Intel Core 2 Quad: one piece of silicon with 4 processors on it; active
  • Intel Core 2 Duo: today’s most popular Intel processor; active
  • Intel Pentium Dual-Core: used in low-end systems and some laptops; discontinued

I believe I have held back the tides of misinformation and confusion once again. You will have to excuse me while I remove a can of soda from a customer’s DVD player.



  1. I believe that Intel is still producing the Pentium Dual-Core chips. I’ve seen a new lines of laptops from most of the major manufactures offering this chip.

  2. That is a good point Noah. I should not have been so hasty in throwing up ‘discontinued’. It looks as though they won’t be ending active production of that chip set until November of this year, so I was a bit hasty. I bet we will see quite a few systems coming out over the next 6 months in the sub $1000 range that are going to be loaded with Intel’s Pentium 4 Dual Core line, at least until the warehouses full of the things are depleted.

    I meant to add this link. It’s not too tech-y and quite informative about Intel’s processor line-up, past and present.


  3. This is HILARIOUS Jeremy. I can only imagine the flabbergasting pseudo tech-talk you must hear during the course of a day. Soda can in DVD player? Wha? Not even I have done something like that.

  4. Actually Pentium Dual Core if it is a four number coded processor is a cut down Core processor. They just decided to keep the Core name for their medium to premium ranges and for those people who only know Pentium they sell them on with less cache and virtualisation turned off. Some of the laptop Celerons are already Core based, so are Core 2 Solo with less instrauctions. Core is basically Pentium M, which is fork of Pentium 3 after the hot dead end that was Pentium 4.

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