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I'm about to buy a MacBook Pro 13" for my college studies, but I'm also buying it for iOS development purposes...

My question is, is the difference between an i5 Dual-Core Processor and an i7 Quad-Core Processor MBP really that big? I mean, what is the difference other than the number?

Thanks in advance

asked Jun 07 '11 at 17:25

Oscar%20Cisneros's gravatar image

Oscar Cisneros

edited Jun 07 '11 at 19:04

iTechnologyz's gravatar image


First of all, Koman90, the first MBPs that used i7 CPUs had dual core i7s, which were literally i5s with more L3 cache. Not much of an improvement in terms of performance compared to a true quad-core i7.

Second, HT doesn't make a 6 core CPU into a 12 core CPU. It only makes the CPU process more information at once, but will only make a difference in highly threaded applications.

Third, you CANNOT compare a Pentium 4 to any of the current Core iX series. Even per core, these i7s(first gen or not), will beat any Pentium 4 down without breaking a sweat....even if the i7/i5/i3 is single core variation at 2.0 GHz and the P4 is at 3GHz.

Back at the question though, the current MBPs have quad core i7s, unless whatever Apple store you are going to doesn't have stock of the latest MBPs yet.

answered Jun 07 '11 at 19:07

Billy%20Aoki's gravatar image

Billy Aoki

As far as hardware, yes, i'm not a mac guy though so depending on the way OS X "Handles" the processor may make a difference, but for the most part i7 is MUCH faster than i5, i5 is a dual core processor with hypertreading (HT) ("feels" like quad core) while i7 is quad core with HT ("feels" like an eight core). i7 extream or i7-900 series is six core with HT ("feels" like 12 cores!)

for more info on processor architecture see http://intel.ly/ihkIFU

answered Jun 07 '11 at 17:44

koman90's gravatar image


I just now realized that you said it was a dual core i7?! I don't think there is such a thing, i wloud get the 2.7ghz i7 by the current specs thoug as even if they are the same model, Dual with HT, that still equates to .3ghz * 2 cores * 2 threads per core = 1.2Ghz Overall difference, if you wanted to caclate the eqivelent Pentium 4 speed difference. Rember that formula as it is crucial in comparing processors; Clock Seepd * Cores (HT? *2) = Pentium 4 Equivlent.

answered Jun 07 '11 at 18:00

koman90's gravatar image


Running an i5 on a MBP is good enough for me to do iOS programming.

If you want better, i7 would be good.

answered Jun 07 '11 at 19:24

iTechnologyz's gravatar image


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Asked: Jun 07 '11 at 17:25

Seen: 5,762 times

Last updated: Jun 07 '11 at 19:24