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Wednesday, April 27, 2005

CPU Basics -- Pentium vs Celeron

By: The Editor
The Celeron and Pentium Processors are two of Intel's best selling CPUs. They are found in a majority of desktop and mobile computer systems.

When comparing the two processors it should be first understood that there are different types of Pentium processors - the original Pentium all the way to the Pentium 4 (the latest Pentium processor). The Celeron processors are more or less the same, although you will find them in a wide variety of speeds. (continued...)

The Intel Celeron processor was always designed to be a low-cost alternative to the Pentium processor line. It is much like a car company that offers various priced cars from the luxury sedan to the economy compact. The Celeron is simply a downgraded Pentium, that almost anyone can afford (it is essentially the compact). To begin, Celeron chips have a smaller L2 cache 9128kb compared with 512kb in the Pentium 4 Northwood, which translates into slower processing speeds. In fact, current Celerons have a clock speed limit of about 2.0GHz, where as the Pentium for is capable of speed in excess of 3.0GHz. In addition, the Pentium runs at a lower core voltage because it is more energy effecient (1.75V vs. 1.5V).

In summary, the Pentium 4 is more powerful than the most advanced Celeron processor on the market. However, Intel has planned it to be this way. Many applications will work just great with a Celeron processor, despite a little less power than the Pentium 4. It is a way to save a little cash when buying a new pc - but don't forget the saying "you get what you pay for." Celeron processors are of good Intel quality, but they will never be as good as the Pentium.