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What is Difference Between Dual Core and Core 2 Duo Processor?

Even though much faster processors are in use now, many people still wondering about the difference between a Dual Core processor and a Core 2 Duo processor. Both names are frequently used, but not many people know the difference between them. Question is: Is there actually a difference?

For manufacturers like AMD and Intel, clock speed is becoming harder and harder to push upwards. There was a time, not long ago, where average clock speeds doubled each and every year. Of course, there are limits and that growth is not reasonable anymore. Besides that, there are also other specs that determine the overall speed of a processor. Available cache memory and 32 or 64-bit architecture, for instance.

Last month, Intel launched its newest Ivy Bridge Processor, the next generation processor with 2-4 cores. The first benchmarks are really good and meets the high expectations like more speed and less power-consumption. The Ivy Bridge Processor will most probably appear in the expected new Macbook-Series and iMac-Series during the next WWDC that will be held on June 11th.

Ok, back to the original question:

General Difference Between Dual Core and Core 2 Duo Processor

The name ‘Dual Core Processor’ is a generic name for all the silicon chips that have 2 processors. Regardless of which manufacturer it comes from. Intel registered the name ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ for a more recent version of that same processor. AMD has another name for it: the X2-series.

So, we could say that a ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ is the same as a ‘Dual Core Processor’. But on the other hand, a ‘Dual Core Processor’ doesn’t have to be a ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’.

Mmm…think a moment about that one!

In general, the name ‘Dual Core Processor’ is used for the first generation, and the more advanced second generation is mostly called ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ for Intel, and X2-series for AMD.

Core 2 Duo Processor

Technical Difference Between Dual Core & Core 2 Duo Processor

  • The ‘Dual Core Processor’ consumes more energy compared with the second generation ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’.
  • The ‘Dual Core Processor’ has a 32-bit processor, while the ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ has a 64-bit processor.
  • The ‘Dual Core Processor’ has 2 Mb cache memory, while the ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ has 4 Mb.

As you can see at these basic technical specs. Intel's ‘Core 2 Duo Processor’ is much more advanced than the first generation ‘Dual Core Processor’.

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