Q:

How do you compare computer processor speeds?

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Quick Answer

The simplest method is to compare computer processors by their operating frequency, which is always stated in a manufacturer's description. Another reliable method is running a benchmark test on selected processors.

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Full Answer

The frequency of the central processing unit, generally given in multiples of hertz, determines the rate at which a CPU executes instructions. The greater the frequency, the more instructions the CPU executes each second.

However, there are more specifications that directly influence performance such as a number of cores or CPU architecture. Using multiple cores in a processor results in a better performance of the processor. Manufacturers also state details about caches, which are memories used by the CPU to reduce the average time needed to access data from the main memory. Generally, the greater the caches, the better the performance of a computer. Processor architectures are related to the length of instruction set, and they are often given in bits.

Another comparing method is CPU benchmarking, which is a type of measurement for processor performance. These measurements help users understand standards for computer functionality. Moreover, they provide a set of standards that allow users to compare the performance of different processors under the same circumstances. Running the CPU benchmark requires a specific program.

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