Two processors walk into a series of benchmarks… and it turns out it’s a bit tricky to tell which is which. Peter at Netbooked recently managed to get his hands on a Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3s with a shiny new 1.83GHz Intel Atom N470 processor and an S10-3 with the much more common 1.66GHz Intel Atom N450 CPU. And he put them to the test.

While the N470 clearly has a faster clock speed, it’s not that much faster than the N450. And so we probably shouldn’t be surprised that when Peter ran several benchmarks on the two computers, the scores weren’t very far apart at all. The Lenovo S10-3s scored slightly higher on most tests, but actually lagged a tiny bit in the graphics department.

The N470 gets a Windows Experience score of 2.5 compared with 2.3 for the N450. But that’s out of 7. Long story short, in real world settings you’re probably not going to notice any real difference between these two chips. Neither is going to make your computer fly, but both should be good enough for basic computing tasks such as web surfing, editing documents, or watching standard definition (or even 720p) video.

Sure, if you have the choice between a computer with an Intel Atom N450 and N470 processor, the N470 might offer a slight performance boost. But it’s probably not enough to justify paying much more for that computer.

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10 replies on “Intel Atom N450, N470 processors benchmarked”

  1. Back in my early days of computers, a cpu might go from 400 ghz to 600mgz. At any rate they where always noticeably faster. I haven’t seen any speed difference in years. Some cpus are hundreds more for a slight ghz of speed. If your not looking at benchmarks, it would be heard to tell the difference between a 2100ghz and a 2300 ghz cpu. I have a 4 year 2.1 core duo in my desktop, now I just overclock it to 3.2 to get my speed boost. In atom cpus I don’t think you can tell which is the fastest without a benchmark.Intel just has to come out with something new so we can buy it, and probably pay more for it.
    What I thought would happen a year ago is happening now, all the cheap netbooks are going away and they want $400 to $500 for anything with an atom cpu. No thanks

    1. 1.6 single core vs 1.6 quad core is a huge difference, just because the ghz number isn’t exponentially larger doesn’t mean they have not progressed. And most note/netbooks are going for lower power consumption and not more power because they are made for portability not gaming.

  2. This is the same crap going on for the past 15 years. We are given processors that are slightly faster than the previous processor. And the whole world is supposed to get excited.

    Let’s face it, even now, we can even get not just 1.83Ghz but 5.0Ghz. But, marketing strategy dictates, push out the improvements gradually, to keep society excited little by little.

    The netbook community is becoming as stupid as the desktop and notebook community. Getting excited over pathetic little improvement. Only sad people will pay a premium to buy the latest processor and become victim of the old marketing strategy.

    As for the desktop world, for the majority of people, a 5 year old PC performs as fast as the current latest processor for most day to day applications. (excluding graphics and gaming applications). Even if there is an improvement in speed, its so insignificant.

    Seriously, say you open Microsoft Word, today’s processor may take 0.5 seconds, but the 5 year old machine takes 1 second.

    You think its going to make a big difference in your life?

    The sam applies to netbooks. What has really improved since the N270?

    1. [quote] The sam applies to netbooks. What has really improved since the N270? [/quote]

      More battery life?

    2. I have to say, I’m in a unique situation to refute you on your performance issues. After having my Q6600 quad core blow up, and being forced to go back to a old AMD 64 single core setup I had sitting in my basement, the difference between the two is VERY noticeable. Not that the Q6600 was a world beater, but still. The P4 equivalent system is about 5 years old, and it’s noticably slower at literally EVERYTHING… Then again it’s only a windows score of 3.1 so those Atom processors you’re scoffing aren’t so far behind it. It’s also not fast enough to keep up with a lot of games, and the beautiful video card I salvaged out of the wreckage of my old computer is now being constrained by the CPU on games as simple as WoW if there’s anything going on in the background, and I mean virtually anything, so I desperately miss multiple cores…

      That said, I can’t see shelling out more for minor speed bump increases on a processor that is designed for power efficiency over performance. It’s a freaking in-order dual issue chip, how good is it ever going to be? There’s a lot more holding it back than the clock, and expecting a lot out of a minor clock bump is indeed foolish… I agree with you there.

      I think that people need to focus. If they’re buying a netbook, that’s one thing, get the best unit for the money. If you are at all concerned with performance, and need to have more oomph than a typical Atom will provide, don’t screw around, get a laptop, or a thin-and light if the size matters.

    3. Michael,

      Don’t be too ego. It is not that everybody have a new PC in the world, it is a good news for those just decided to buy a new PC. Minor improvement is always better than nothing! PC is not to be built for only those who already have it.

      N450 is 64-bit OS enabled! 64-bit OS run faster when the program you are using do a lot of double precision calculation. Note the software you install must also be 64-bit to take advantage of 64-bit OS.

      N470 with 1.8GHz run youtube 720P HD video better than N450! More smooth, less slide show.

      All this is done with less hardware, less power. Can you imagine 15W full load at Atom netbook vs 150W full load at simple 1.6GHz Pentium 4 desktop we use back in year 2003? It use 10x less power!

      If one like to power up his PC 24/7 not matter how, use of Atom is more environmental friendly! It reduce the gasoline burn in your local electric generator station to produce extra power for your 150W Pentium 4 system.

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