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Windows 7: what can I do to improve laptop performance w/o getting a new one?

07 May 2011   #1

windows 7
what can I do to improve laptop performance w/o getting a new one?


I own an ASUS F3SA Notebook (manufactured in 2007) with 2GB Ram, Intel Core 2 Duo Centrino, Windows 7 32 Bit, 510 MB ATI Mobility Radeon Graphics card...

It appears that from running intensive calculation programs (like Cinema 4D when it has to performing a rendering), that my CPU performance is a bottleneck. I can run programs that take up 100% CPU but not take up 100% RAM at the same time.

After contacting the manufacturer, I found that I cannot upgrade the CPU on my notebook. I was told I could add more RAM, and/or upgrade my hard-drive, but I'm not convinced that will give me the improvements I'm looking for. Am I correct in this thought?

Is there anything I can do? Everything else in the laptop is working to satisfaction, I would hate to have to get a new notebook over this issue...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2011   #2
mickey megabyte

ultimate 64 sp1

as far as calculations go, there is no substitute for a faster cpu. that's the number crunching bit of the machine.

overclocking isn't recommended for a laptop, due to heat issues.

getting more ram, or upgrading to an ssd (solid state drive, to replace your hard drive) will certainly make the machine feel snappier and more responsive by rapidly increasing program startup and file access times - but it won't make those calculations any quicker - although it may help to 'feed them in' faster.

trouble with ssd's are they are still low capacity and expensive. hybrid solutions also exist which offer the best of both worlds - speed and capacity, although i've never tried one, and don't know how effective they are - i have read some good reviews.

i imagine if you're using cinema4d, you've got a lot of data to store, so hybrid is probably the best way to go, as there's not normally enough room in a laptop to have two drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2011   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

As MM says, it is the CPU that does the work in a rendering job. That is why people who are into video editing are willing to shell out big bucks for the newest, fastest processors when they come out. No other upgrade will affect the speed of the process as significantly as a faster processor.

That Core 2 Duo is pretty old tech, relatively. Any i series intel machine would be multiple times faster rendering, with the i7 being best suited for the task.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

07 May 2011   #4

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86

Processor running at 100% is not necessarily a bottleneck, it may simply indicate its busy. The criteria for bottlenecking AFAIK is the percentage of time the processor is busy and a queue length (no. of threads waiting for the processor to become free) more than 2. Maxing memory and ssd may give you some performance benefits. But cpu intensive tasks are best run on desktops that can house powerful processors with adequate cooling.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2011   #5

windows 7

thank you for the replies, looks like getting a new cpu is the best option.

I just wonder, are laptops manufactured nowadays more friendly to cpu upgrades down the road? It would be nice to have a laptop that I can upgrade select parts over the years instead of having to get a new one every 3-5 years or so.

Recently I considered building a custom powerhouse desktop, but I decided against it because I really want to ability to take my computer with me on the go and its not like my laptop is terribly obsolete for my purposes.

It is somewhat disappointing though that laptop technology or laptop consumer-friendliness isn't where I want it to be. Seems like a horrible waste (and not very eco-conscious) to have to start over with a new system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2011   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

Laptops are not typically marketed to the power user, but towards the "average" PC user. They are very rarely upgradable on the processor or motherboard and very often the graphics engine too. You are expected to replace the whole thing. Good for business, bad for you.

You can check a manufacturer like Alienware. They make high end laptops for power users (at extraordinarily high prices) that *might* have upgradable processors. They do have upgradable graphics.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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