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basco
03-27-2007, 11:00 PM
I have a HP zd7000 laptop with a Pentium 4 3.0ghz cpu. Not a mobile Pentium 4 but a desktop Pentium 4 crammed into a laptop. The battery life is terrible but it's always plugged in so that is not much of a factor for me. My laptop is getting a bit long in the tooth and I'm going to be purchasing a new one pretty soon. I was hoping that some of you smart people could point me in the right direction on which cpu I should get. With all the new dual core cpu's and clock speeds not meaning as much as they used to it's very confusing as to which one to go with. Is a 1.66 ghz dual core cpu going to render faster than my current 3ghz cpu? I realize that the cpu is just one part on the computer and other components come into factor as to the overall performance of a machine. That being said the cpu is the most important factor when rendering, so I would like to get some clarity on how clock speed and number of cores compare to just using the clock speed of a cpu to know which one is the fastest.

Thanks,
-Richard

Phil
03-28-2007, 11:11 PM
www.blanos.com/benchmark

That should help you evaluate any performance change you might expect.

Speedmonk42
03-28-2007, 11:36 PM
Core 2 Duo, and while your buying one get it with a 4MB cache. So that means 2.0 or higher.

As for the number of cores, I think it might depend on how you set up the render. Some configurations take advantage or the dual core while others do not. Camera types I think.

I think the only decision to make if you are buying a new laptop is how fast a Core 2 Duo you can afford, balanced against the cost of the graphics card.

basco
03-29-2007, 02:41 PM
Thanks for the responses. Cost is going to be a big issue so I probably won't be able to buy the top of the line Core 2 laptop. I guess my biggest question is how does a 1.66ghz or 1.83ghz core 2 compare to my Pentium 4 3ghz cpu. I've looked around and I couldn't find a good comparison between my Pentium 4 (Northwood) and the mobile core 2 cpu's. I think one reason is my current cpu is a desktop cpu stuck in a laptop. It's also a pretty old cpu so finding good comparisons is hard.

Thanks,
-Richard

biliousfrog
03-30-2007, 09:43 AM
I've just asked the same question on CGTalk :D

I've stuck with AMD for years as they've been much cheaper & often faster, how does the Turion dual-core mobile processor compare to the Intel?

BTW that benchmark thing doesn't work for me, it won't allow me to scroll or select anything in the lists

basco
03-30-2007, 10:29 AM
I have an AMD dual core desktop machine and I really like it. As far as the dual core turion goes I pretty sure they are quite a bit slower than the Intel core 2 duo chips. I think there even slower than the original core duo chips. I have a friend with 1.66ghz core duo laptop, I'm going to render a test scene on my laptop then on his to see how they compare to each other. I'll post my results here when I get done. I have a benchmark scene that I came up with to test my machines.

biliousfrog
03-30-2007, 10:55 AM
I've found a few comparisons between Turion/Core 2 Duo...They've mostly shown that the Turion is marginally slower but costs on average a third of the price & is 64bit, where as the Intel is currently only 32bit. I'm not sure when the 64bit Intel chips will be released but I'm inclined to go with AMD at present...it depends on whether the ATi graphics work ok with LW8.5 as the AMD powered machines all seem to use the ATi cards, I've only used nVidia since v.6.

One of the things I need to consider is rendering as I also want the laptop to be used as a render machine. AMD & Intel process certain things differently such as procedural textures so a mixed machine render setup could cause problems with flickering animations...hence why I'm leaning towards AMD at he moment, cheaper & compatible with my current machines.

basco
03-30-2007, 11:18 AM
I think the core 2 duo's can execute 64bit code like the turions. The original core duo's and core solo's are only 32bit. I might be wrong but isn't the problem fixed in regards to procedurals being rendered slightly different on AMD and Intel machines? The video card is another factor in why I want to upgrade. My current laptop has a 64MB GeForce FX 5200 in it. Which is really not cutting it anymore. My native resolution is 1440X900 which is OK until you start up Lightwave and get bunch of windows open. I also use my laptop for video editing and dvd authoring so I need a laptop with a higher resolution monitor. I use Avid Liquid 7 for video editing which uses the GPU and CPU for rendering and FX. It's really time for an upgrade.

Alliante
03-30-2007, 02:04 PM
I'm using a new 1 year old Acer 8200 (http://reviews.cnet.com/Acer_TravelMate_8200/4505-3121_7-31679411.html)... except for the ATI card (I'm a Linux guy), it's great!

Next lappie will probably be the MacBook Pro (still an ATI issue, but at least the driver performance is better in MacOS)... unless we get a Linux version of Lightwave :D

nlightuk
03-30-2007, 02:19 PM
I have the same spec in my Alienware m7700 machine. I investigated the option of upgrading to a duo-core, but as far as I can tell, the chipset on the motherboard doesn't support anything except the HT PIV series chips.

Make sure you check that your motherboard supports the upgrade before you shell out the cash.

Of course, if anyone knows I can upgrade my machine, please let me know ;)

JGary
03-30-2007, 03:13 PM
[QUOTE=biliousfrog]
One of the things I need to consider is rendering as I also want the laptop to be used as a render machine. AMD & Intel process certain things differently such as procedural textures so a mixed machine render setup could cause problems with flickering animationsQUOTE]

I'm not sure this is true anymore. I have a desktop with a dual core AMD processor and a Dell XPS laptop with a Intel dual core processor. I've been using both to render out frames, sometimes splitting a sequence between the two, and have not noticed any difference between the images. Lots of procedural texures used in my renders as well. However, I am rendering with Fprime, so maybe it's a different story with LW's native renderer.

AbnRanger
03-31-2007, 02:13 AM
I have a dual-core AMD Turion...and that's because it was the best dual-core in the price range I had at the time.
However, Core 2 Duos are quite a bit faster...no doubt about it.

I had a friend using his Core 2 Duo powered Mac (with the same 2GB's of RAM I have), on my network, helping to render out a few scenes; and it smoked my Turion Laptop. Even edged out my AMD 64 X2 4400 (4GB) desktop (of course my desktop was running the network manager, so I don't know how much that may have slowed it down...but still)!

What you want to do is start looking at all the Core 2 Duo models...most of which have integrated Intel video chips.
Exclude all of those. Then find all the one's that have a DEDICATED Video card (like Nvdia 7400 or better)...you'll later thank yourself for doing it. Get the model with the best dedicated video card you can. The reason to focus on the video card is simple. All the other features (like CPU speed, Hard Drive speed and RAM capacity) usually are toward the higher end when a decent video card is included. It's hard to find one that fit's that criteria, under $1500.
But if you use it to do some of your 3D, and compositing work...it's money well spent. Go below that, and you're a bit hamstrung. The video performance in integrated chips are fine for watching DVD's, but they aren't intended, nor capable of handling graphics intensive applications like Lightwave, or composting apps like AE or Combustion.

Something like this woud be a good starter:
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/HP-Pavilion-15-4-Widescreen-Notebook-PC-DV6275US/sem/rpsm/oid/171960/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

AbnRanger
03-31-2007, 02:22 AM
If you can afford to go a little higher...one like this is more ideal:
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Toshiba-Satellite-17-Widescreen-Notebook-PC-P105-S9337/sem/rpsm/oid/171951/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

basco
03-31-2007, 03:19 PM
Well I tried my friends core duo machine last night. It is a Gateway with 2GB ram and a 1.66ghz(T2300) dual core cpu. I have a little benchmark scene of my own that I run on different machines to give me an idea of how fast Lightwave renders. As I said before I have a HP laptop with a 3ghz Pentium 4 with 2GB of ram. I rendered out my benchmark scene several different times with various settings. My friends 1.66ghz dual core machine was faster than my 3ghz P4 machine on every single scene I rendered. From 20 seconds to 60 seconds faster, depending on how the scene was setup. I would really like to test a 1.66ghz core 2 duo machine to see how it compares. I think the sweet spot might be to get a 2ghz core 2 duo machine.

AbnRanger
04-01-2007, 01:46 AM
Well I tried my friends core duo machine last night. It is a Gateway with 2GB ram and a 1.66ghz(T2300) dual core cpu. I have a little benchmark scene of my own that I run on different machines to give me an idea of how fast Lightwave renders. As I said before I have a HP laptop with a 3ghz Pentium 4 with 2GB of ram. I rendered out my benchmark scene several different times with various settings. My friends 1.66ghz dual core machine was faster than my 3ghz P4 machine on every single scene I rendered. From 20 seconds to 60 seconds faster, depending on how the scene was setup. I would really like to test a 1.66ghz core 2 duo machine to see how it compares. I think the sweet spot might be to get a 2ghz core 2 duo machine.Yeah, that's quite a bit more muscle, but regardless, you are going to want to get the best (dedicated...NOT integrated) video card you can afford. Even though 9.2's viewport performance (in Modeler) has taken a HUGE leap forward, you still need a beefy card to handle what LW will throw at it (and your video editor too...especially with Avid Liquid relying so much on your card...that's what I use right now too).

If you have to hold off a month to save up the extra cash...it'll be worth it.

Sande
04-01-2007, 01:01 PM
I recently bought MacBook Pro (Intel [email protected],33GHz) and from what I've experienced I can really recommend these processors - no matter what laptop you'll end up buying. This saved me in my latest freelancejob and after almost hundred hours of rendering (which would have been nearly 3 times as much with my desktop comp) the laptop was only a bit warm - I was expecting smoke and at least a bit melted keyboard before I started. :)

basco
04-02-2007, 05:24 PM
I would really like to get a 17" Macbook Pro but they're too expensive. I can get a comparable PC for a lot less money. The Macbook Pro would cost me $2800.00 while a similarly configured HP would cost me $1650.00. That's a $1150.00 savings. With that much money left over I could build a decent dual core desktop machine and use it for network rendering. Or maybe with that left over cash I could buy a Dell 24" or 30" monitor. I would really like to get a Mac but I just can't justify spending that much more money on a pc when I can get a comparable one for so much less. I hope this doesn't spark a "Macs are better than PC's. No way PC's are better than Macs." In the end they do the same thing.

AbnRanger
04-02-2007, 07:17 PM
I would really like to get a 17" Macbook Pro but they're too expensive. I can get a comparable PC for a lot less money. The Macbook Pro would cost me $2800.00 while a similarly configured HP would cost me $1650.00. That's a $1150.00 savings. With that much money left over I could build a decent dual core desktop machine and use it for network rendering. Or maybe with that left over cash I could buy a Dell 24" or 30" monitor. I would really like to get a Mac but I just can't justify spending that much more money on a pc when I can get a comparable one for so much less. I hope this doesn't spark a "Macs are better than PC's. No way PC's are better than Macs." In the end they do the same thing.For all the cutsey mac commercials (where the slacker-dude pokes fun at the supposedly boring PC guy), that's the very reason Apple continues to have such a marginal share of the overall computer market. It's the main reason that I've never considered a MAC...not even for a second.

archiea
04-02-2007, 08:04 PM
The big red button on the right is for Fprime....

http://www.boscovs.com/wcsstore/boscovs/images/store/product/images/040208113j6665.jpg

archiea
04-02-2007, 08:08 PM
For all the cutsey mac commercials (where the slacker-dude pokes fun at the supposedly boring PC guy), that's the very reason Apple continues to have such a marginal share of the overall computer market. It's the main reason that I've never considered a MAC...not even for a second.

Mercedes has a marginal sales compared to the ford Focus. Which car would people WANT to drive vs CAN drive....

scew market share...give me a machien that is solid and that works,.,,, and that run Mac OS.. Have you seen mac hardware? When they don't catch on fire, they are built solid and to last. I luv that the aluminum notebookis actual metal, not plastic.. The desktop machines are industrial design wonders.

AbnRanger
04-02-2007, 08:51 PM
Mercedes has a marginal sales compared to the ford Focus. Which car would people WANT to drive vs CAN drive....

scew market share...give me a machien that is solid and that works,.,,, and that run Mac OS.. Have you seen mac hardware? When they don't catch on fire, they are built solid and to last. I luv that the aluminum notebookis actual metal, not plastic.. The desktop machines are industrial design wonders.I used nothing but mac's in school. Still, I can say the same thing about the PC's I built myself...for about 1/3 to 1/2 the cost.
By the way, there's no way in Dell you can say that a nicely spec'ed HP or Dell system is a Ford Focus, and a Mac is a Mercedes.
You like what MAC offers...cool. However, I think I'll stick to paying alot less for the same level of performance or better...by building my own PC's...or buying a Windows laptop.

avkills
04-02-2007, 10:19 PM
We've had some problems with our Dell Core 2 Duo laptops. I think we bought about 50 of them and we are already replacing hard drives, motherboards, etc etc. They are fast though. I have a Mac Book Pro and to be perfectly honest, for the times I do need to run Windows, it seems to run it a lot better than dedicated boxes.

The bottom line is if you want a machine that is pre-built and solid, you're going to pay for it. Boxx is a prefect example.

-mark

Animapper
04-02-2007, 11:12 PM
I used nothing but mac's in school. Still, I can say the same thing about the PC's I built myself...for about 1/3 to 1/2 the cost.
By the way, there's no way in Dell you can say that a nicely spec'ed HP or Dell system is a Ford Focus, and a Mac is a Mercedes.
You like what MAC offers...cool. However, I think I'll stick to paying alot less for the same level of performance or better...by building my own PC's...or buying a Windows laptop.


Whoa people - this is how flame wars get going for no reason other than people get emotional about their tools. It's kind of silly if you think about it but this thread is getting to that point - however, it is also inaccurate from both sides right now. I've built 60+ pc's over the years and own macs too. Currently, you cannot buy the parts to build a comparable Xeon Dual quad for what you can buy a macpro 266 desktop and run windows on it. If I could have I would have but I couldn't beat the price.

I'm all for speed and quality. Whatever machine takes you there is fine. While the macbook pro is more expensive than a few toshibas and dells, when comparably configured it's fairly close. This one could be a toss-up. Quality nod goes to apple and has from quite a few forums.

All that being said - I'll never get emotional about these tools. If AMD comes in with a sweet new quad I'll leave Intel behind. As far as apple goes, it's pretty nice to have more options now that I run all my 3D entourage on macs running windows. I boot back into OSX and fire up Final Cut on my KONA LHe and edit High Def promos off the same rig. Pretty damn cool folks.

Regards,

AbnRanger
04-03-2007, 05:22 AM
Whoa people - this is how flame wars get going for no reason other than people get emotional about their tools. It's kind of silly if you think about it but this thread is getting to that point - however, it is also inaccurate from both sides right now. I've built 60+ pc's over the years and own macs too. Currently, you cannot buy the parts to build a comparable Xeon Dual quad for what you can buy a macpro 266 desktop and run windows on it. If I could have I would have but I couldn't beat the price.

I'm all for speed and quality. Whatever machine takes you there is fine. While the macbook pro is more expensive than a few toshibas and dells, when comparably configured it's fairly close. This one could be a toss-up. Quality nod goes to apple and has from quite a few forums.

All that being said - I'll never get emotional about these tools. If AMD comes in with a sweet new quad I'll leave Intel behind. As far as apple goes, it's pretty nice to have more options now that I run all my 3D entourage on macs running windows. I boot back into OSX and fire up Final Cut on my KONA LHe and edit High Def promos off the same rig. Pretty damn cool folks.

Regards,I'm not trying to persuade anyone to choose MAC or PC. Some prefer MAC's for whatever reason, and are therefore willing to pay more. It's your wallet...your choice. Whatever moves 'ya...then More power to 'ya.
Personally, I tend more toward the pragmatic side and the 2 following examples show that, indeed, there is a difference. I've seen the MacBook Pro, and I happen to think it looks cheaper than HP's, Dell's, or Toshiba's...but that's just my view. Taste is subjective. Beyond that, take a close look at the features/specs...then the price.

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Apple-2-33GHz-17-inch-MacBook-Pro-MA611LL-A/sem/rpsm/oid/166833/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Toshiba-Satellite-17-Widescreen-Notebook-PC-P105-S9337/sem/rpsm/oid/171951/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

By the way, the Toshiba easily has the best video card, for those who don't know what the branding numbers (ie Nvidia 7900 GS, ATI X1600) mean.

mattclary
04-03-2007, 06:33 AM
Try the link below. There or Newegg is where I will probably get a laptop from. Note that you can find other laptops that have metal shells other than Macs, there are a couple on this site I saw last week.


http://www.powernotebooks.com/index.php3


Not sure if this applies to Macs, but something to keep in mind:
http://www.powernotebooks.com/articles/index.php?action=fullnews&id=17

mattclary
04-03-2007, 07:03 AM
Man, I love finding this kind of stuff. So my Mercedes is really built by Ford????? :eek:

http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/000613.html



Asus W3J

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner.
Asus is the OEM who manufactures Apple's laptops, and it shows: the Asus W3J hits the sweet spot on all my criteria.


14" 1280x768 widescreen Core Duo
4.4 lbs without DVD-R
Clean, slimline aluminum design
Dedicated ATI x1600 graphics
A nifty swappable bay which supports DVD-R (included), blank bay for lightest weight, an extra battery, or an extra hard drive. "

Animapper
04-03-2007, 09:18 AM
AbnRanger - What about what I said about NOT being able to build a system cheaper?? You went right by that part of my post and continued with the cost factor??? Laptops, yes - workstations, NO.

I don't get it...

mattclary
04-03-2007, 10:25 AM
Currently, you cannot buy the parts to build a comparable Xeon Dual quad for what you can buy a macpro 266 desktop and run windows on it. If I could have I would have but I couldn't beat the price.


I'll have to look into this, don't have the time right now. My findings have been the higher-end you go in machines, the more you save by building it yourself.

It's hard to beat Dell or HP in the low end, but in the high end, it's pretty easy. Haven't compared directly to Apple in a long time.

avkills
04-03-2007, 10:33 AM
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Apple-2-33GHz-17-inch-MacBook-Pro-MA611LL-A/sem/rpsm/oid/166833/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Toshiba-Satellite-17-Widescreen-Notebook-PC-P105-S9337/sem/rpsm/oid/171951/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

By the way, the Toshiba easily has the best video card, for those who don't know what the branding numbers (ie Nvidia 7900 GS, ATI X1600) mean.

The GPU is the only thing on that Toshiba that beats the Mac Book Pro, and probably not by a huge margin either.

I'll digress because it really doesn't matter.

I think as long as you get a current Intel (Core 2) or AMD CPU and a dedicated GPU w/256 MB VRAM, and plenty of RAM you'll be fine running LW on any laptop.

-mark

mattclary
04-03-2007, 10:44 AM
I'll give you this, Apple's price is NOT a bad deal for the Mac Pro. I didn't get to the case and power supply, but it was getting close in price. You might save $300-$400 building it yourself.

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mattclary
04-03-2007, 10:52 AM
Where you will see the price difference rise rapidly is when you strat talking about upgrading the base Mac Pro configuration. Getting more memory or a better video card are going to cost a lot more than if you built it yourself.

archiea
04-03-2007, 11:21 AM
By the way, there's no way in Dell you can say that a nicely spec'ed HP or Dell system is a Ford Focus, and a Mac is a Mercedes.


yes you can, its called the OS... I have a PC at home, too and I use Linux at work. Also, if you combine the usabilityof mac hardware to run the two OS natively, there's added value there. Also, mac hardware as of late has been very competative in the speed department too... PC's definitly have their place, and in the world of volume computing its a factor. However to the individual user, The value of something may outweigh its cost.

archiea
04-03-2007, 11:28 AM
Where you will see the price difference rise rapidly is when you strat talking about upgrading the base Mac Pro configuration. Getting more memory or a better video card are going to cost a lot more than if you built it yourself.

Yeah, thats true, but you are paying for the "service" of getting a machien that you plug in and use.. as opposed to having build. Personally, I had fun building my PC, but htere is something to be said about a store bought PC..

mattclary
04-03-2007, 12:02 PM
but htere is something to be said about a store bought PC..

Yep, "not for me". ;)

avkills
04-03-2007, 12:38 PM
The only *built* PC (Wintel) I'd even consider is a Boxx.

-mark