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What is Dual Core and 64-bit
Dual-core processors contain two processing cores on one chip increasing efficiency and speed while running multiple programs, this means a significant increase in response and performance when running multiple applications simultaneously.
Having two processors working together, each one taking care of different applications reducess those annoying processing pauses, and Switching from one program to another without waiting for the computer to catch up.
64-bit systems can process twice as much compared to a 32-bit system. The most significant difference between a 32-bit and a 64-bit system is the amount of memory that they support, 4 GB limit for 32-bit machines and a almost unlimited amount of RAM for 64-bit systems, I think its something like 10 - 16,000,000 GB which doesent realy matter since most motherboards can only handle between 4 - 16 GB plus buying that much Ram would be expensive.
Why choose Dual Core
I always noticed my old AMD 3000+ processor was running at high temps (about 55 degrees+), I've went through many heatsinks and fans trying to find a quiet one with no luck always had to settle for a high speed fan that made a noisy system.
I've tried running multiple programs and applications on my 4200+ processor (more than I need or ever would use) and I haven't been able to get the temp above 41 degrees which means less fans and low fan speeds which makes a much quieter system, perfect if you leave your computer on 24/7 like I do.
2. Speed & Loading Times
I started up a few programs that I use on a regular basis on my old AMD 3000+ and then on my AMD 64 X2 4200+ to determine to loading speeds these are the results:
AMD 3000+ between 25 - 38 seconds
AMD X2 4200+ between 8 - 14 seconds
MX 2004 on AMD 3000+ between 9 - 27 seconds
DW 8 on AMD X2 4200+ between 3 - 12 seconds
AMD 3000+ between 15 - 38 seconds
AMD X2 4200+ between 5 - 28 seconds
I also installed 3D Maxx, my mate uses it for 3d modeling, he runs a intel P4 2800 and it took him 18 minutes to render a simple characters head while I did it in just over 4 minutes, thats about 75% faster, you should of seen his jaw drop he has to do that kind of rendering quite a few times a day.
As seen above I use those programs on a regular basis and most of the time I need them running at the same time, this was a problem for me when doing so on my old AMD 3000+ system, often they would freeze for long periods of time and even worse they would simply crash... taking my unsaved work with them, one of the ways around this was to only work with one program running at a time but this very time consuming having to switch back and forth as you can see by the times above.
Since moving up to dual core my system has became more stable, which makes my day more enjoyable... a lot less agrivation and I get more done.
I haven't actually noticed a difference using dual core while playing games on there own, but I did notice one Friday when my anti-virus program was due to run that there was a very slight lag or jitter in game play just as it started, on my old system it was very noticeable, I would usually have to pause the game till the scan settled down a bit.
I would probably recommend if your a gamer your money might be better spent on a faster single core processor.
I would defiantly recommend this processor it has the power to deal with even the most intensive programs, if your a gamer and you have an interest in doing something more with your computer... now or in the near future I would still recommend it.
Its a great low cost introduction into the dual core and 64-bit market
Take note that there is two socket types, the new AM2 socket which means you may need a new motherboard, and a socket 939 version, if you have the socket 939 board you only need to flash your bios.
There is faster X2 processors on the market but at a higher price this X2 may be a better choice at present when taking into account the price of the motherboard as well.
Thanks for reading