Intel Pentium Mobile Processors Compared: How to spot the best CPU for you budget laptop

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We get it. Not everybody needs a top dollar laptop with super duper high specs. Some of us just want a laptop for browsing the web, checking emails, watching videos on YouTube, messaging and updating our social media status. A budget laptop will do just fine but how to pick the right one.

When considering a budget laptop particularly one based on Windows laptop, you will come across the Intel Pentium line of mobile processors. The Pentium name has been around for ages. It was a brand name used by Intel to represent top of the line processors back when there were only Pentium and Celeron processors with the latter being the budget line. Fast forward to today, with the introduction of Intel Core processors, the Pentium line has been relegated to being the mid-budget line.

But buyers of budget laptops often get confused with the model numbers and speed rating or clock speed which may not necessarily represent the true performance of the laptop. We intend to break it down for you in simple terms. First, by listing the three most common processors carrying the Pentium brand in the market right now.

Intel Pentium Gold 4415U 2.30 GHz

First launch in early 2017, the fastest mobile processor (at the time of writing) from the Pentium 4000 series family is a dual-core processor clocking in at 2.30GHz with 2MB of SmartCache. Being the fastest, the processor does consume more than double the average power required to sustain the Base Frequency.

PassMark Average CPU Rating

Intel Pentium Gold 4415U @ 2.30GHz Dual Core 3154


The CPU consumes 15W while the other Pentium from the 4000 series, the Intel Pentium 4415Y only consumes an average of 6W. It is therefore more power hungry and will run down the battery on your laptop faster compared to the slower Intel Pentium 4415Y. Still, budget laptops that uses the processor is able to offer all day use per charge or up to 10 hours or more. HP Pavilion 14 Intel Pentium Gold laptop boasts up to 11.5 hours battery life. Given its faster performance, vendors and manufacturers sometime add the word Gold to distinguish it from the slower processors in the 4000 series.

The Intel Pentium Gold 4415U is by far the most common Pentium processor found on budget laptops. When choosing a budget laptop make sure you go for one that uses this processor. Couple with the right components such as fast memory, solid state drive storage and Full HD display, you are bound to get the best bang for your buck.

HP Pavilion 14 Intel Pentium Gold

HP Pavilion 14 Intel Pentium Gold Laptop on Amazon

Intel Pentium Silver N5000 1.10 GHz

Next, we have the Intel Pentium Silver N5000, a quad-core processor first introduced at the end of 2017. The processor has a base frequency of 1.10 Ghz but can be boosted up to 2.7 GHz when needed. It also has double the amount of cache at 4MB and a lower average power consumption of 6W. Looking at the Burst Frequency of Turbo Boost frequency alone, one might mistake this to be a faster processor than the Intel Pentium Gold 4415U but real word average tells a different story.

PassMark Average CPU Rating

Intel Pentium Silver N5000 @ 1.10GHz Quad Core Turbo Boost up to 2.70 GHz 2451


Running cooler and consuming less power, the processor is able to balance performance and power based on the systems requirements and workload. Laptops based on the processor such as the Acer Swift 1 tends to have very long battery life. The Acer Swift 1 boast 2 and a half work days use on a single charge or up to 17 hours.The other processor in the Silver series, the Intel Pentium Silver J5005 processor running at 1.50 GHz is designed for desktops.

Acer Swift 1 14-inch Intel Pentium Silver Laptop on Amazon

Intel Pentium 4415Y 1.60 GHz

Lastly, we have another processor from the Intel 4000 series. Intel Pentium 4451Y is the second fastest processor in the 4000 series introduced not long after the Intel Pentium 4415U in above. Hailing from the Kaby Lake family, the dual core processor clocks in at 1.60 GHz. It also has 2MB of SmartCache and runs at half the average power required to sustain its base frequency compared to the fastest processor on our list, using only 6W of power.

PassMark Average CPU Rating

Intel Pentium 4415Y @ 1.60GHz Dual Core 2197


It may be the slowest Intel Pentium processors and not as common as the faster Intel Pentium 4415Y but the processor found its way into Microsoft’s small tablet, the Surface Go. The efficient processor requires no active cooling, perfect for a 10-inch tablet, allowing the design to be slim and silent. Remember, 6W vs 15W on the faster Pentium 4415U. Still, the tablet is a runaway success with many happy owners.


Microsoft Surface Go on Amazon


Performance Comparison Between the Different Pentium Processors

We leave you with the performance comparison table and graph for three of the most common Pentium processors described above.

PassMark Average CPU Rating

Using the Pentium 4415Y as the baseline, the Pentium N5000 is 11.5% faster while the Pentium 4415U is nearly 43.5% faster. If you are after a full size budget laptop, aim to get one with the faster Intel Pentium Gold 4415U. The extra performance is sure to help speed things up whatever you do.

Intel Pentium 4415Y @1.60GHz 2197
Intel Pentium Silver N5000 @ 1.10GHz 2451
Intel Pentium Gold 4415U @ 2.30GHz 3154


Using the figures in the table above, we chart the graph below for ease of comparison between the processors.

Intel Pentium Mobile Processors

NOTE: The higher the average CPU mark rating based on real world samples, the better performing the processor.

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