What is a Good Processor Speed for Your Laptop? [Guide]

CPU is an important component of any computer. The speed of CPU determines how smoothly your laptop runs. However, not everyone uses a laptop for the same reason. Different needs require different CPU speeds.

If you use a computer for editing videos and photos, a different speed is required than someone who uses it for gaming. Unfortunately, there are no clear rules about which CPU is the absolute best. It ultimately depends on the usage.

There are many different types of CPUs on the market that are suitable for different tasks. If you don’t know which CPU speed is ideal for your laptop, we have a solution for you.

What is the Best Processor For My Laptop

There are so many good processors for laptops. The Intel Core is one of the best on the market. However, its competitor – the AMD processor – is a tough competitor. Choosing the best processor for your laptop depends on the frequency and intensity of your work.

What is a good processor speed

If you’re looking for a good processor, you shouldn’t assume that the more expensive one or the latest one is the best. Although Intel’s Core i7 processor or AMD’s Ryzen 7 are more expensive and better than the older models, the differences in processing aren’t as obvious for everyday tasks.

If you mainly want to write, stream or just surf, Intel’s processors like the Core i3 or Core i5 are sufficient. AMD’s Ryzen 3 and 5 models are also a good choice for basic needs.

For demanding games with sophisticated graphics or editing 4k videos, a higher-end processor is required. Intel’s processors like the Core i7 or AMD’s processors like the Ryzen 7 are perfect choices. Keep in mind that higher processors will drain your laptop’s battery faster.

How can I know Which Processor is on My Laptop

Every laptop runs on a processor made by either Intel or AMD. If you’re not sure which processor model is in your laptop, you can find out here.

If you’re running Windows 10, follow these simple steps. First, right-click on the Start menu and select Task Manager. Next, go to the Performance tab and find CPU. This will show the name and speed of your CPU.

Task manager Performance CPU

Another way to find CPU information is through the settings menu. Go to Start > Settings > System > About. There you will find information about your OS, processor, and RAM.

About Your PC Windows 10

If you’re running Windows 7, you can find your CPU model and speed in the Control Panel. Once you open the Control Panel, look for the System and Security tab. Then right click on it and navigate to the System tab. There you’ll find the model and speed of your CPU.

AMD Ryzen vs Intel Core Processor

Intel processors like the i3, i5 and i7 have dominated the market for a long time. But AMD Ryzen processors perform just as well as an Intel processor. To know which processor is better, we should take a closer look at the spec sheet.

Core i3Basic4.6 GHz90 W
Ryzen 3Basic4 GHz65 W
Core i5Middle4.1-4.6 GHz65-95 W
Ryzen 5Middle4.2-4.4 GHz65-95 W
Core i7Top-notch4.7-4.9 GHz65-95 W
Ryzen 7Top-notch4.4-4.5 GHz65-105 W
Source: Intel and AMD Processor Differences

If we look at the numbers, Intel’s processors are more promising than their competitors. Between the Core i3 and the Ryzen 3, Intel’s processor is the clear winner in terms of clock speed. However, the Core i3 is more power hungry. That’s easily remedied by charging your laptop properly, though. So between the two, the Intel processor is the better choice.

Intel’s Core i5 and Ryzen 5 are neck and neck. Both offer the same capabilities. However, Intel’s numbers are slightly better. Both Intel’s and AMD’s top-notch processors offer great values. Both processors are fast when it comes to heavy workloads. However, if we judge the processors by numbers, 4.9 GHz is clearly better than 4.5 GHz.

The base models are suitable for streaming and watching YouTube videos. With the mid-range models, you can use apps like Adobe Photoshop and even play some average games. The high-end models are mainly suitable for intensive video editing or for games that require high computing power. However, Intel’s processors are generally a bit more powerful.

Which Intel Processor is the Best

Intel 10th gen processors

If you want to know which of Intel’s processors is the best option for you, you need to understand the specifications. The first aspect you should pay attention to is Hyper-Threading. This allows a single physical processor core to act as two virtual cores. Generally, the more cores a processor has, the faster it computes. Intel’s processors like the Core i3 and i7 both support Hyper-Threading, but the Core i5 doesn’t.

Turbo Boost is another important feature of a processor that you can use to speed up your tasks. For example, when you’re playing a demanding game or editing a large file, your processor will activate Turbo Boost to provide extra speed. This is a useful feature offered by Intel processors like the Core i5 and i7. However, the Core i3 doesn’t support Turbo Boost.

The size of the cache is also an important factor. The cache is the memory of the processor. The Core i3 has a cache size of 3 Mb, while the Core i5 has a cache size between 3 Mb and 6 Mb. The Core i7 is around 4-8 Mb. Intel’s Core i3 has two physical cores, while the i5 and i7 have both dual-cores and quad-cores.

ProcessorPhysical CoresHyper-ThreadingTurbo BoostCache Size
Core i32YesNo3 MB
Core i52-4NoYes3-6 MB
Core i72-4YesYes4-8 MB
Source: Differences between Intel’s processors

Intel’s Core i3 is best for people who don’t use their laptops for editing or gaming for ease of use. Instead, it’s perfect for browsing or streaming. The Core i5 is a mid-range performer that handles average tasks smoothly, including moderate gaming. The Core i7 is suitable for users who have an intense workload that requires multitasking.

Which Generation of Intel CPU is Better

Intel’s 10th, 9th and 8th generation cores all use 14nm manufacturing. However, there are minor improvements with each new generation. To find out which core is better for you, let’s take a look at the specifications.

The 10th generation processor offers Hyper-Threading in all processor models, from the i9 to the i3. Earlier generations don’t offer Hyper-Threading in all processors.

The 10th generation core offers higher speed potential compared to the 9th or 8th. There are features like Turbo Boost and Thermal Velocity Boost that will make your device run smoother and faster during demanding tasks like graphics-intensive games or 4K video editing. The cache size of the 8th generation core is a maximum of 12 MB. The 9th generation Intel Core has a maximum cache size of 16 MB, while the 10th generation offers 20 MB.

Generational improvement in graphics and media Intel CPU
Generational improvement in graphics and media (Intel CPU)

Deciding which core of generation is the best depends on personal utility. If we look at the absolute numbers and specifications, the 10th generation is the best. However, if you don’t really use your laptop for intensive work, the older generations are also a good choice.

Which Feature of a Processor is More Important

Each feature of a CPU is equally important. All features work together to ensure smooth operation. Hyper-threading, for example, is very useful when you need extra cores for your tasks. The number of physical cores determines the efficiency of the processor. It allows you to multitask seamlessly, while the clock frequency determines the operating speed.

Ideally, you want a balanced processor. So, a processor that offers all these features is an optimal choice. However, if you only use your laptop for surfing or watching videos, you can compromise on the number of cores and choose a CPU with a medium to high clock rate.

Hyper-threading is a great feature offered by most processors these days. If you have a processor that only has a couple of physical cores, hyper-threading can practically double that number. So if you have a processor with 1 or 2 physical cores, Hyper-Threading can solve that problem.

Your needs will determine the various CPU features you need. If you plan to do a lot of gaming, a CPU with a higher clock speed is a better choice. If you need to render large videos for your work, it’s better to have more physical cores.

How do You Identify Your Processor?

To know which model and generation of processor you’re using, you just have to look at the digits indicated on the processor.

Intel Processor Names and Numbers

Each processor has four digits followed by a letter. The first digit identifies the generation, while the following three digits of the product number are the SKU. SKUs are usually assigned in the order in which processors of each generation and product line are developed. And the letters tell you what function the processor performs best.

Intel Processor Suffix

Intel processors ending with the letter K are fast processors with a high clock rate, while U processors are designed for power-saving laptops and G processors have built-in graphics.

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes a laptop fast?

A laptop with a moderate to high clock speed will give you a fast running laptop. This is because the clock speed of the CPU determines how fast instructions are executed. As a rule, a fast processor with a good clock rate can execute instructions every second.

Most processors today have multiple physical cores. This allows the processor to compute over a billion instructions in one second. With a high clock speed and multiple physical cores, your laptop won’t only run faster, but also smoother.

The cache and RAM are equally important for a fast laptop. The cache is super fast at calculating and executing instructions. A processor with more L2 or L3 cache stores more data for you, along with processor information. If your laptop has more RAM, it’ll store more data. Slowing down your laptop isn’t a problem with a better RAM.

Features like Turbo Boost, which many processors have, will also speed up your laptop. The Turbo Boost feature is activated when you’re working with heavy applications and your processor feels that you need a bit more speed. Likewise, processors with this feature can increase the speed of your laptop when it needs more power.

Is the GHz or a processor more important?

GHz or clock speed is a feature of any processor. It’s ideal to get a processor with a good clock speed. Different processors offer different clock speeds. If we look at the intended use, a good processor seems to be more important.

GHz is one of the many features of a CPU. But besides GHz, a processor has some other important features. Turbo boost, hyper-threading, physical cores and even cooling systems are part of a good processor.

Only focusing on the GHz value can only be useful for certain work areas. For example, a good clock speed (GHz) is only useful for games that demand high speed from your processor. But a good processor ensures smooth operation and functionality overall.

Is a processor with a high GHz a good option for my laptop?

GHz determines how fast your processor calculates information in one second. A higher clock speed means faster operation. GHz comes into play when you play a lot of games or use memory-intensive applications.

If you’re just surfing or streaming videos on your laptop, a high GHz won’t be noticeable. However, even a processor with a low clock rate is sufficient to perform everyday tasks.

A processor with 3.4 GHz is considered a good clock rate. You can handle moderate to intensive games with it. But a processor with 2.0 GHz is also good if you only surf, read, write or watch videos.

Should I buy a laptop with a Core i5 or i7 processor by Intel?

Processors within the same family have common standard features. Choosing a laptop with a good processor can be tricky. You first need to know which model offers better specifications and numbers.

If you compare the Core i5 and the i7 from the same generation, the differences can be very small. The Core i5 has lower capabilities than the i7. The Core i7 will perform better when multitasking, editing large media files or creating media files.

Both the Core i5 and i7 have multiple physical cores. Both processors have four or even more cores. A processor with more cores means you won’t have a problem multitasking. It also depends on the generation of the cores. If the Core i5 belongs to Intel’s 9th generation and the Core i7 to the 7th generation, the Core i5 is the better choice.

If the Core i5 belongs to the 9th generation, the Core i5 is the better choice. The latest generation of cores offers better potential in terms of speed, efficiency and overall performance. Each successive generation has improvements and adjustments that were missing from the previous generations. However, if you compare within the same generation, the Core i7 performs slightly better than the Core i5.

Which is the best processor for gaming?

Gaming requires some of the best processors on the market. Unfortunately, playing with intense graphics pushes your processor to its limits. If you’re using a processor that can’t handle the overload, your laptop or PC may shut down or even lagging. Here’s a chart that shows you how different processors handle games.

Processor1080p Gaming Score1440p Gaming scorePhysical CoresGHz
AMD Ryzen 9 5900X100%100%123.7-4.8 GHz
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X97.21%98.42%83.8-4.7 GHz
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X77.82%84.50%163.5-4.7 GHz
Intel Core i9-10900K88.97%94.48%103.7-5.3 GHz
Intel Core i7-9700K79.09%86.84%83.6-4.9 GHz
Intel Core i7-8700K73.11%78.39%63.7-4.7 GHz
Source: Gaming benchmarks of Intel and AMD processors

It’s clear that the AMD Ryzen 9-5900X is capable of handling both 1080p and 1440p gaming without difficulty. It scored a perfect 100% in the benchmark test, which makes it a good option for gaming fans.

When it comes to Intel’s processors, the latest core generation performs the best. Thus, the 10th generation Core i9 outperforms its predecessors in the benchmark results.


There are so many processors out there, good and bad. Choosing one seems difficult when there are so many good options in the same price range. We hope our guide has helped you find the laptop with the perfect CPU for your needs. Remember that more expensive doesn’t mean better.

Have you found a good processor for you? How did you find it? We’d love to hear how you chose your processor. What do you look for in a food processor? Leave a comment below to let’s know your tips and tricks!

Chris Martin is a professional tech writer. He's been covering tech tutorials, hardware reviews, and more as a professional writer for over seven years now and it doesn't look like he'll be stopping anytime soon! In addition to writing about the latest gadgets on the market, he also covers topics such as how to set up your home network or troubleshoot any computer problems you may have.

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