Originally Posted by Quakeboy02
this seems to fit my particular needs well, as there is still plenty of horsepower left when I have two of the cores maxed out.
Wouldn't that mean it doesn't fit your needs well?
I think that is the reason for selecting a faster dual core for home use instead of a more expensive quad core.
For example, I'll compare my own typical computer use at work to my typical computer use at home:
At work: My four core system is usually running a big software rebuild with four copies of the compiler running in parallel, each using almost all of one core and almost 2GB of my 8GB of ram. Disk I/O, even with caching and buffering, prevents any one compile from reaching 100% of one CPU. While I wait, I post to online forums. There is just about enough CPU power and memory left over from the compiles to allow that. A faster (but less than twice as fast per core) dual core system would make the whole thing take much longer to complete.
At home: My faster (per core) dual core system often has a single threaded process maxing out one core, while the other core is much more than enough for servicing all the overhead of the network interface and timer and mouse, etc. plus surfing the net. (My 8GB of ram is largely wasted, but it didn't cost much and having it doesn't hurt anything). If I had two more cores they would contribute nothing. If the speed per core were lower (no matter how many extra cores came with that) I'd be waiting longer for whatever it is I'm waiting for.
If you have two cores working and two idle (as you seem to have described) you're in that same typical home computer workload. The extra two cores contribute nothing. If the first two cores had been faster, whatever the computer is doing would be done sooner.