Many of us are wondering which processor to choose for our laptop or desktop computer among all those Intel processors. Despite the years, some users still find it difficult to compare Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 processors with each other. I am therefore offering you a small guide that will allow you to compare and choose for yourself the Intel Core processors that best suit your needs.

What people think about Intel?

As one would tend to think at first glance, a Core i7 does not have 7 cores any more than a Core i3 has 3 cores. The numbers are simply an indication of the processor’s processing power.

As you probably know, there are several models of Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7, and they are not all the same. Besides, there are two variants for each Core processor line: one for desktops and one for laptops. They should not be mixed because each variant has its characteristics.

As I told you before, you have to compare the processors in terms of their number of cores, their frequency, the size of their cache memory and whether they have certain technologies such as Turbo Boost and Hyper-Threading.

Read about AMD Processors: Best budget processor for gaming, why AMD is selling more? (Latest Processor for PC)

To begin with, the number of cores. This is the main difference between the Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7 processors, not the least of which is the number of cores. The more cores, the more tasks can be performed simultaneously.

Next, the frequency. This is a measure of how fast the processor will be able to perform the tasks. The higher the frequency, the better the performance of the processor.

However, you cannot rely solely on the number of cores or the frequency of a processor to evaluate its performance. Other factors must be taken into account to evaluate the power of a processor.

For example, consider a Core i5-3570 processor that has four cores and a 3.40 GHz clock rate. A Core i3-3240 is also clocked at 3.40 GHz, has Hyper-Threading technology allowing it to have four logical cores and is also much cheaper. At first glance, it would be more interesting to buy the Core i3 rather than the Core i5.

At first glance only! Even though the Core i5-3570 normally runs at the same frequency as the Core i3-3240, and even though both can handle the same number of tasks simultaneously (4 in total), the Core i5 benefits from Turbo Boost technology. 

This allows the Core i5 to reach a frequency of 3.80 Ghz! Since all Core i5 processors have the latest version of this technology – the Turbo Boost 2.0, they can all easily outperform a Core i3. On top of that, it’s better to have four physical cores (like the Core i5) rather than two physical + two logical cores (like the Core i3).

For a more detailed comparison of processor features, read the article on Intel Core Processor Performance Indices.

For a clear overview of the differences between the Core i3, i5 and i7 processors. Depending on your needs and your PC usage, one Core processor will suit you better than another!

One Processor For Each Profile

Generally speaking, what you should remember if you know absolutely nothing about processors: Intel Core i3 < Intel Core i5 < intel Core i7. The Core i7 is the most powerful processor offered by Intel, followed by the Core i5 and the Core i3. So far nothing complicated! 

Can you do the same thing on your PC depending on whether you have a Core i3, i5 or i7 processor? No, each processor corresponds to a particular profile. You must first think about what you want to do with your computer and then choose the processor that corresponds to your user profile. To help you situate yourself and choose the processor that best suits your use of the PC, I propose a small comparison between the three processors offered by Intel.

Intel Core i3: Gram Input


The Core i3 is the entry-level model, it can be used for basic office tasks, surfing the Internet, making audio and video calls, and playing HD video. The integrated Intel HD Graphics 630 graphics processor is not enough to play the latest video games, so you will need a dedicated graphics card. However, you will still be able to play old games or games that are not graphics-intensive.

Specifications :

  • Number of cores: 4 cores
  • Micro-architecture: Coffee Lake, 8th generation Intel Core processors
  • Socket: Intel LGA 1151 (compatible only with Intel 300 Series chipsets)
  • Etching fineness: 14 nm
  • No Hyper-Threading technology
  • No Turbo Boost
  • Cache Memory: 6 MB
  • Graphics controller: Intel HD Graphics 630

Intel Core i5: Mid-range


The Core i5 is the mid-range, faster for everyday tasks and, above all, much more powerful than the Core i3 in the field of video games and photo/video editing. Excellent value for money, more powerful than the i3 and much cheaper than the i7, it is an excellent choice today to turn to Core i5. Don’t forget to add a dedicated GPU (graphics card) so you can enjoy the latest video games. 


  • Number of Cores : 6 Cores
  • Micro-architecture: Coffee Lake, 7th generation of Intel Core processors
  • Socket: Intel LGA 1151 (compatible only with Intel 300 Series chipsets)
  • Etching fineness: 14 nm
  • No Hyper-Threading
  • Technology Turbo Boost
  • Cache Memory: 9 MB
  • Graphics controller: Intel HD Graphics 630

Intel Core i7: High-End


The Core i7 is the top of the range, offering the best possible performance for playing video games, editing videos and using heavy software such as modeling, animation and 3D rendering applications. Likewise, Best Motherboard For Core i7 9700k which is a great resource for how to pick the best motherboard for your PC.

It doesn’t perform much better than Core i5 in video games, so if you mainly use your PC for gaming, save money and turn to Core i5. However, when it comes to running heavy software like Adobe PhotoShop, Adobe Premiere Pro, VMWare Workstation Pro or Autodesk 3ds Max, the Core i7 with its 8MB of cache memory is the best there is right now.


  • Number of cores: 6 cores (+ 6 logical cores thanks to Hyper-Threading)
  • Micro-architecture: Coffee Lake, 8th generation of Intel Core processors
  • Socket: Intel LGA 1151 (compatible only with Intel 300 Series chipsets)
  • Etching fineness: 14 nm
  • Technology Hyper-Threading
  • Technology Turbo Boost
  • Cache Memory: 12 MB
  • Graphics controller: Intel HD Graphics 630

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