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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    desktop or laptop

    Hi

    I currently have a compaq presario 2511ea laptop (pentium 4 2.4 gig, 30gig HD and 386mb DDR) but also have a dekstop with Athlon 1.4 gig, 786mb SDRAM which also has a couple of expensive soundcards in it. Trouble is I find the laptop quite slow becuse of the shared graphics ram and am wondering whether it would be cheaper and easier to upgrade the CPU on the desktop for a faster computer. Funnily enough I seem to find the desktop faster anyway even though it has a slower CPU. Any thoughts on this? I have yet to find any way of using my Yamaha SW1000XG soundcard with my laptop.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: desktop or laptop

    First of all, I'm a meat-and-potatoes guy when it comes to sound and don't know anything about super-duper sound setups, so I won't touch that one. But, I'd wager that you have a RAM starved laptop on your hands. You didn't say which OS you're running, but if it happens to be XP your 386 is only slightly above the bottom threshhold for memory. Laptops are wonderful, but many of them tend to have unique sets of problems. It may be impractical or too costly to do so, but I would consider increasing that RAM if that's at all possible. There may be other system tweaks you could also do to help "production," but I bet memory is at the root of it.....

  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    Re: desktop or laptop

    Hi

    yeah you're probably right. I am running XP Pro and the graphics card takes 64mb of my ram automatically. Unfortunately lapop RAM for compaq is very expensive. Is there a major difference between DDR and SDRAM cos it could also work out very expensive to replace my desktop ram. Is there any major difference in speed between an Athlon XP 1500 and Pentium4 2.4 desktop running in a laptop?

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: desktop or laptop

    After the amount of memory the next thing that tends to slow down a laptop is the hard drive. Many desktops come with 7200 RPM disks nowadays with very low seek times. Laptops often have much slower disks. There's not much you can do about this.

    Mind you - I use a laptop for almost all my work and so long as it has plenty of memory I tend to get along fine.

    StuartR

  5. #5
    3 Star Lounger
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    Re: desktop or laptop

    The processors have a major difference. the XP 1500 is a 1.33GHz processor. Also if you want to upgrade the CPU in the desktop be sure the motherboard can support it. Many (and boy do I mean many) boards topped out at the 1.4 before going to the AMD XP class chip. Very few that I have run across have BIOS updates that delve into the XP chip.
    As for system speed, the HDD is probably 4,200 or 4,400 RPM vs. 5,400 or 7,200 RPM, Big difference.
    The quantity of RAM will make a difference but there is type and speed differences in RAM too, DDR 1600 (200MHz) , 2100 (266 MHz), 2700 (333MHz) and up as well as access time in RAM (7, 7.5, 8 and 10 nanoseconds).
    FInally, the laptop, being an intel chip may be using their (Intel's) Speed Step technology which slows the CPU down if you are using the battery, of the system is getting too hot (as laptops do), or if you are not asking a demand on the CPU (if you are using email and a word processor the CPU may drop as low as 1.3GHz - older ones went as low as 733MHz). Check for an updated Speed Step Driver from the manufacturer of the laptop or go straight to Intel's web site.
    If you want to buy RAM, DON'T get it from Compaq, I prefer Crucial however, www.kalhon.com, www.memman.com, www.4allmemory.com, and www.buymemory.com all sell at reasonable prices.
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