What is a Quad Core processor?

A quad core processor is a single computing component with four independent processors called cores. Cores are the units that read and execute instructions in a program. The main concept behind quad core processor is that it helps in making your computing system multi-tasking. Actually if you have multiple cores then your computing system can split up the work between the cores so that the applications run faster with higher efficiency.

What is a quad core processor

In a quad core setup, cores 1 and 2 share a single cache memory and similarly cores 3 and 4 share same chare memory. If core 1 or 2 needs to communicate with core 3 or 4 then it has to use an external communication channel generally a frontside bus. Quad core processors are fabricated on 65nm silicon process technology. In quad core processors each core runs at low frequency, power is normally given to a single core and is then divided into four core and this results in higher performance per watt of power consumed.

Actually the key issue in quad core processors is that the software program that runs on them needs to know how to utilize the available cores. Statistically saying around 97% programs are single threaded that means they cannot use all the available cores in the CPU. Right now only 1-3% software programs (like Nero, Adobe etc) are designed so that they can use the multiple cores available in a computing system.

What does Quad Core Mean for Users:

  • Quad core processors are four dedicated physical threads.
  • Helps operating system and applications deliver additional performance.
  • Better multitasking and multi-threaded performance.
  • Workload is split between the cores.

Disadvantages of Quad core:

  • The power consumption is more as compared to dual core.
  • More Heat generation and hence it requires a good cooling system.
  • The over-clocking capabilities are inferior to dual cores.
  • The price is quiet high.
  • To use the available core, the architecture of the existing softwares should be changed for multi-threading capabilities.

Personal Suggestion for Quad Core buyers:

The first point I would like to put forward is Quad core computers are basically designed for high end users and not for general purpose users. So if you are not a big time multi-tasker you don’t really need it.

Second point is that if you look at the softwares that are currently available in market then you will get an impression that dual cores are better than quad cores as these softwares are single threaded, but if you are someone who wants to keep his\her computer upgraded for 5 years or so then you must go for a quad core.


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Ankit is the founder of Geek Revealed. He is tech Geek who loves to sit in front of his square headed girlfriend all day long. :D   You can find Ankit on FaceBook or Google Plus

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