A Core i5 PC is a step up from a Core i3 model. It's more powerful and can multitask easier, making it great for all sorts of tasks that require more horsepower like media creation or gaming but may be overkill if you just need an entry level PC to run basic tasks like office work, web surfing or streaming. PCs fitted with Core i5 processors are perfect for those looking to do a little bit of everything. These mid-range machines can handle more complex applications than entry level models and are generally better at multitasking as well.
Core i5 PCs will typically cost more than Core i3 PCs but will offer a noticeable performance uplift, particularly when working on more challenging tasks. i5 processors tend to be found in mid-range PCs - good all-round machines with enough power to run all but the most demanding of workloads. Core i5 processors are quad or six CPUs and since each core is in effect a mini processor capable of carrying out its own set of tasks, the more cores a processor has, the better.
When comparing different Core i5 PCs, you need to look at the processor’s clock speed which is expressed in GHz and measures the number of clock cycles the processor can perform per second. The higher this number, the faster the processor usually is and the more efficiently it can complete tasks. Don’t look at clock speeds in isolation though. Multicore processors generate heat and the more cores, the more heat can be an issue. For that reason, processors with more cores often run at a lower, cooler clock speed. Sometimes, it’s better to pick a processor with more cores running at a lower speed than a faster CPU with fewer cores; it depends on the type of applications you need to run. Refer to the software vendors for their recommended specifications before choosing.
Turbo Boost is a feature found on most i5 processors where the clock speed can be increased temporarily when a performance boost is needed. You won’t find this feature on Core i3 PCs though. Another feature that differentiates Core i5 PCs from Core i3 and Core i7 models is the processor cache. Think of this as a temporary storage area within the processor for fast access to information used repeatedly. The bigger the cache, the more data can be stored and the better the performance. Cache sizes increase up the Core range with i3 having the smallest cache sizes and i9 the largest.
There are other factors to consider before making your Core i5 PC purchase, including chassis size and design as well as physical features like ports and interfaces for connecting devices such as monitors, printers and external storage disks. There are also different types of computers available including tower PCs, desktops and small form factor PCs to suit both your individual preferences and available space.