Intel vs AMD test, in your laptop one will be better than the other

At equivalent prices and equipment, should you buy a laptop PC equipped with an Intel or AMD processor? Are there any performance differences between the two?

This is the eternal question that haunts some users when investing in a new configuration: should you opt for a laptop PC equipped with a intel processor or on the contrary turn to an equivalent configuration, but which integrates a AMD chip ?

Image 1: Intel vs AMD test, in your laptop one will be better than the other

While the outsider of the two processor giants is becoming more and more competitive against the No. 1, and some manufacturers – such as Asus – are planning to offer their machines in both Intel and AMD versions in 2022, the dilemma is more relevant than ever. Our colleagues from Tom’s Hardware have therefore embarked on a series of tests in order to provide an answer. And as we will see, the answer depends on the use you intend to make of your machine.

We compared two identical PCs

For the results to be relevant, the tests must be carried out on two configurations as close as possible, which is not easy. In this case, we asked Acer to provide us with two models of its ultrabook Swift 5which has the advantage of being available on both platforms.

The two laptops are equipped with identical equipment, except for the processor: a Intel Core i5-1135G7 in the first case, of the Tiger Lake family, and a Ryzen 5 5500Uwhich exploits the Zen 2 architecture of the founder AMD.

Of course, it is still too early to be able to carry out this comparison with the latest chips from the two founders. Indeed, configurations equipped with chips Intel’s Twelfth Generation Alder Lake are just beginning to be marketed, while the AMD Ryzen 6000 series processors, with their new Zen 3+ architecture and new RDNA 2 graphics chip, will land in the coming weeks. We will not fail to repeat our tests to find out if these new generations of components are a game-changer…

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Core i5 and Ryzen 5, two different technical sheets

In the meantime, and as the 2021 chips will continue to be present in a large number of machines for a few more months, here are the technical characteristics of the Intel and AMD components present in the Acer Swift 5:

  • Intel: processor Core i5-1135G7 11th Gen “Tiger Lake U” (4 cores / 8 threads, @2.4/4.2GHz, 10nm burn, 28W TPD) and integrated Iris Xe GPU
  • AMD: processor Ryzen 5 5500U 5th generation “Lucienne” (6 cores / 12 threads, 2.1/4.0 GHz frequencies, 7 nm engraving, 15 W TDP) and AMD Radeon 7 integrated graphics processor
  • The rest of the equipment is identical, since it includes 16 GB of DDR4-4266 memory (with timings of 36-39-39-90 on the Intel model and 40-39-45-90 on the AMD configuration) , as well as a 512 GB NVMe SSD.

    Our test protocol

    To decide between the two processors, we used around thirty applications, including specialized benchmarking software (3D Mark, PC Mark, Cinebench, etc.), but also real professional software which makes intensive use of the computing power of Intel and AMD chips, in the fields of programming, scientific calculations, 3D image synthesis, CAD, etc.

    Here are the conclusions we can draw from the results obtained while the two laptops were working while connected to the mains:

    Intel or AMD: which is better for gamers?

    Even without a dedicated GPU, of the Nvidia RTX type, the Intel Tiger Lake generation chip is doing better than its competitor in this area, thanks to a Intel Iris Xe graphics more efficient than the Radeon iGPU 5th generation Ryzen processors (+23% on average).

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    Image 2: Intel vs AMD test, in your laptop one will be better than the other

    Of course, this does not transform the Acer Swift 5 Intel into an ultrabook gamer! But the Iris Xe chip still makes it possible to run certain sophisticated games (Fortnite, The Division or Rise Of The Tomb Raider for example) in correct conditions (with rather fluid animations, comprising between 30 and 40 frames per second), in Full HD and as long as they are run in minimal graphics mode. We had already seen this fairly satisfactory behavior of the Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor with games during our recent tests of Asus ultrabooks:

    Intel or AMD: which is better?

    When it comes to performing a large number of very repetitive operations, as is often the case when using graphic creation applications for example, the Ryzen 5 5500U processor is essential compared to the Core i5. The AMD chip takes full advantage of its advantage in terms of the number of physical cores (6 against 4 only for the Core i5). Remember that (well-programmed) applications are designed to use these calculation units in parallel in order to reduce calculation times as much as possible.

    And even if the average of our various tests (with applications like Blender, LuxRender, 7zip, Solidworks, Catia, etc.) does not show a doubling of performance in favor of AMD, the advantage of the Ryzen 5 5500U over the Core i5-1135G7 is still significant: 24% !

    Image 3: Intel vs AMD test, in your laptop one will be better than the other

    Intel or AMD: which is the best processor for office automation?

    By using the PC Mark 10 benchmarking application, which runs a script that simulates a work session using different office and multimedia applications (Gimp, Libre Office, etc.), we see that the two configurations return almost the same performance indices.

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    This can be explained by the fact that the differences in performance of the CPUs and iGPUs of the two founders are attenuated by those of the other other components of the system, such as the SSD or the memory.

    Intel or AMD: which offers the best battery life?

    Finally, we measured the autonomy of the two configurations using the test integrated into the 3D Mark application and with the brightness of the screen adjusted to 200 nits. We then see that the Swift 5 in the AMD version remains in operation much longer than the Intel model (+ 2 hours and 30 minutes!).

    We also note that – when the two configurations are running on battery – the laptop with the Core i5 is faster. But this is not really important, because it is very likely that when using the PC on battery power, it is to perform simple operations, such as consulting websites, reading emails, videos, etc. . The important thing, in the end, is above all not to run out of electricity. In this case, AMD therefore pulls out of the game better…

    Image 4: Intel vs AMD test, in your laptop one will be better than the other

    Read also > Comparisons and tests of the best laptops 2022 by brand

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