The CPU is the mind of the computer. Hence, users concentrate on the processor the most when it comes to purchasing a laptop or a desktop computer.
Among CPUs, Intel and AMD are the most prominent. Intel has a fantastic range of CPUs ranging from the Core i3 to the Core i9 processors.
Besides, you have the 9th and 10th generation CPUs that come with excellent features.
One must admit that choosing the ideal CPU can be a tricky affair with not much to choose in the pricing between the Core i5 and Core i7 processors.
The Core i3 CPUs are suitable for budget users, whereas the powerful i9 chips are the best for content creation and other high-performance activities.
Selecting the perfect CPU between the i5 and i7 can be a challenge, primarily because the pricing difference is not much.
Here are some factors that should help you choose between the Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs.
Cores – The more, the better
All things remaining equal, the Core i5 CPU-equipped system costs less than the Core-i7 computer models.
When you compare these two chips on a one-to-one basis, the Core i7 is better at tasks like multitasking, media-creating and editing, high-end gaming, and other heavy workloads.
When you work with programs that can handle as many cores as it can get, it is better to have a CPU with a higher number of cores.
At the same time, it would be excellent if your CPU has hyperthreading and Turbo Boost functions.
Amongst the Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs, almost all 8th and 9th gen desktops and laptops come with a minimum of four cores. Some of them have six cores, as well.
The high-end gaming PCs can have eight cores. At the same time, the lowly priced Core i5 and i7 CPUs are dual-core processors.
Hyperthreading – Better at Multitasking
If you look at the desktop computers, you have the Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs separated by the numbers of supported threads and clock speeds.
Generally, both Core i5 and Core i7 have a similar number of cores. The 8th generation has six, and the 9th generation ones have four cores.
The advantage of the Core i7 CPUs is that they come with hyperthreading facilities. Therefore, they are better at multitasking.
Hyperthreading is useful for heavy-duty work like media creation, editing, transcoding, and web surging.
As gamers do not require hyperthreading, gamers are better off purchasing Core i5-powered computers.
Avid gamers can go for a combination of Core i5 CPUs and high-end graphics rather than a Core i7 CPU with less expensive graphics.
All Core i7 CPUs have hyperthreading on the desktops, whereas the core i7 chips do not.
The 9th generation CPUs do not have hyperthreading in Core i7 chips. They are reserved for the high-end Core i9 processors.
Cache – The more, the merrier
Compared to the Core i5 CPUs that have a maximum cache memory of 9MB, the Core i7 has 12MB.
The cache memory proves useful for editing and calculating spreadsheets. It also proves handy when multitasking.
Turbo Boost – Higher clock speeds
Turbo Boost is an overclocking feature that allows the CPU cores to run faster than their base clock speed.
Both the Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs have Turbo Boost, but the i7 processors have higher speeds. The advantage of Turbo Boost is that it enables quicker booting.
The thumb rule is that all else being equal, the higher the clock speed, the better it is.
However, Turbo Boost is not the only feature that decides the performance of a CPU.
The high-end gaming laptops require dedicated GPUs. These devices can increase the overall pricing of the computer. Therefore, the lower-end Core i5 chips and Core i7 rely on Intel HD or UHD graphics.
The advantage of integrated graphics is that they save power. Though the integrated graphics are not the best for gaming, these graphics solutions are designed for multi-display work and mainstream productivity.
The integrated graphics follow the same numbering system as the CPUs. The higher the number, the better it is. Thus, the Intel Iris Plus 650 is better than the Intel UHD Graphics 630.
High-performance Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs
Avid gamers and video editors need high-performing laptops for their activities. The Core X-Series and Y-Series Mobile CPUs are the best.
The Core i7 X-series processor has eight cores and can process 16 threads at a time. These high-performing CPUs are ideal for 3D rendering and 4K video processing.
If you add multiple video cards, these CPUs are suitable for high-end gaming.
The Intel Core Y-Series processors are the best for thin and light portable laptops. These processors consume less power and generate little heat. Therefore, there is no need for a cooling fan.
Which is the better CPU among the Core i5 and i7?
On the desktop front, the Core i5 is the perfect one for the mainstream users and those who care about performance. The Core i7 is for computer enthusiasts and high-end users.
As far as the portable laptops are concerned, it is better to ensure whether the chip supports hyperthreading and the number of cores it has. Depending on your usage, you can choose between the Core i5 and Core i7.
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Srinivasa is Vsbytes’s Editor-In-Chief. He Is A Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert And Has Been Interested In Computer Hardware, Software, And Gaming Right Since The Time He Was A Child.