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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Celeron M 550 2GHz Core 2 Duo U9300 1.2GHz
Cyberpunk 2077 1537% 1110%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 2104% 1529%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 1487% 1073%
FIFA 21 1431% 1032%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 1755% 1271%
World of Warcraft: Shadowlands 2445% 1782%
Watch Dogs Legion 2104% 1529%
Horizon: Zero Dawn 1755% 1271%
Grand Theft Auto VI 2591% 1889%
Genshin Impact 1140% 816%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core 2 Duo U9300 1.2GHz is marginally better than the Intel Celeron M 550 2GHz when it comes to running the latest games. This also means it will be less likely to bottleneck more powerful GPUs, allowing them to achieve more of their gaming performance potential.

The Core 2 Duo was released less than a year after the Celeron M 550, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

The Core 2 Duo has 1 more core than the Celeron M 550. However, while the Core 2 Duo will probably perform better than the Celeron M 550, both CPUs are likely to struggle with the latest games, and will almost certainly bottleneck high-end graphics cards. Both CPUs also have quite low clock frequencies, which means recent games will have to be played at low settings, assuming you own an equivalently powerful GPU.

More important for gaming than the number of cores and threads is the clock rate. Problematically, unless the two CPUs are from the same family, this can only serve as a general guide and nothing like an exact comparison, because the clock cycles per instruction (CPI) will vary so much.

The Celeron M 550 and Core 2 Duo are not from the same family of CPUs, so their clock speeds are by no means directly comparable. Bear in mind, then, that while the Celeron M 550 has a 0.8 GHz faster frequency, this is not always an indicator that it will be superior in performance, despite frequency being crucial when trying to avoid GPU bottlenecking. In this case, however, the difference is probably a good indicator that the Core 2 Duo is superior.

Aside from the clock rate, the next-most important CPU features for PC game performance are L2 and L3 cache size. Faster than RAM, the more cache available, the more data that can be stored for lightning-fast retrieval. L1 Cache is not usually an issue anymore for gaming, with most high-end CPUs eking out about the same L1 performance, and L2 is more important than L3 - but L3 is still important if you want to reach the highest levels of performance. Bear in mind that although it is better to have a larger cache, the larger it is, the higher the latency, so a balance has to be struck.

The Core 2 Duo has a 2048 KB bigger L2 cache than the Celeron M 550, but neither of the CPUs have L3 caches, so the Core 2 Duo wins out in this area with its larger L2 cache.

The maximum Thermal Design Power is the power in Watts that the CPU will consume in the worst case scenario. The lithography is the semiconductor manufacturing technology being used to create the CPU - the smaller this is, the more transistors that can be fit into the CPU, and the closer the connections. For both the lithography and the TDP, it is the lower the better, because a lower number means a lower amount of power is necessary to run the CPU, and consequently a lower amount of heat is produced.

The Core 2 Duo has a 21 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Celeron M 550, and was created with a 20 nm smaller manufacturing technology. What this means is the Core 2 Duo will consume significantly less power and consequently produce less heat, enabling more prolonged computational tasks with fewer adverse effects. This will lower your yearly electricity bill significantly, as well as prevent you from having to invest in extra cooling mechanisms (unless you overclock).

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameMeromPenryn-3M
MoBo SocketSocket PSocket 956
Notebook CPUyesyes
Release Date05 Sep 200719 Aug 2008
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores1vs2
Clock Speed2 GHzvs1.2 GHz
Turbo Frequency-vs-
Max TDP31 Wvs10 W
Lithography65 nmvs45 nm
Bit Width-vs-
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size64 KBvs128 KB
L2 Cache Size1024 KBvs3072 KB
L2 Cache Speed-vs-
L3 Cache Size-vs-
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

Graphicsno
Base GPU Frequency-vs-
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
DirectX-vs-
Displays Supported-vs-
Comparison

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size-vs-
Revision-vs-
PCIe Revision-vs-
PCIe Configurations-vs-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe Celeron brand has been used by Intel for several distinct ranges of x86 CPUs targeted at budget personal computers. Celeron processors can run all IA-32 computer programs, but their performance is somewhat lower when compared to similar CPUs with higher-priced Intel CPU brands. For example, the Celeron brand will often have less cache memory, or have advanced features purposely disabled. These missing features have had a variable impact on performance. In some cases, the effect was significant and in other cases the differences were relatively minor. Many of the Celeron designs have achieved a very high bang for the buck, while at other times, the performance difference has been noticeable. This has been the primary justification for the higher cost of other Intel CPU brands versus the Celeron range.Core 2 is a brand encompassing a range of Intel's consumer 64-bit x86-64 single-, dual-, and quad-core microprocessors based on the Core microarchitecture. The single- and dual-core models are single-die, whereas the quad-core models comprise two dies, each containing two cores, packaged in a multi-chip module. The introduction of Core 2 relegated the Pentium brand to the mid-range market, and reunified laptop and desktop CPU lines, which previously had been divided into the Pentium 4, Pentium D, and Pentium M brands.
The Core microarchitecture returned to lower clock rates and improved the usage of both available clock cycles and power when compared with the preceding NetBurst microarchitecture of the Pentium 4/D-branded CPUs. The Core microarchitecture provides more efficient decoding stages, execution units, caches, and buses, reducing the power consumption of Core 2-branded CPUs while increasing their processing capacity. Intel's CPUs have varied widely in power consumption according to clock rate, architecture, and semiconductor process, shown in the CPU power dissipation tables.