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Core vs CPU Usage

post #1 of 2
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I understand the math (one core is 100% the other is 0% the CPU usage is 50%). However, what is the effect? For example, when playing a game two of my cores would be at 100% and my total CPU usage at 35%. Would having those two cores maxed be hurting my performance? What affects usage? If the same program uses 80% of the CPU on one computer and only 20% on another, what would be the difference- the number of cores or the speed or both?

Also I noticed some of my cores are "parked" in resource monitor. I have read something about having HT enabled and the parked cores are the virtual cores. Does this mean they are disabled?

Sorry for all of the questions. I just really want to understand exactly how this all works.
My Comp
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 6700k @ 4.7Ghz MSI z170a Gaming M7  EVGA GTX 1080ti FTW3 Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (4x4) @3000mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung SM951 256GB Samsung 850 Pro 256GB Cryorig Ultimate R1 Windows 10 
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QNIX QX2710 Evolution ll 1440p 27" NZXT HALE90 V2 850w NZXT Phantom 
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My Comp
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 6700k @ 4.7Ghz MSI z170a Gaming M7  EVGA GTX 1080ti FTW3 Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (4x4) @3000mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung SM951 256GB Samsung 850 Pro 256GB Cryorig Ultimate R1 Windows 10 
MonitorPowerCase
QNIX QX2710 Evolution ll 1440p 27" NZXT HALE90 V2 850w NZXT Phantom 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 2
It really depends on the software. If the software can only effectively use one thread, then you'll see a single thread maxed out while the overall processor usage would be much lower. Whether that affects performance is down to the speed of the CPU and how demanding the program is. However, even that can be misleading because Windows can distribute threads (work) over different cores as it sees fit, which can change how the picture looks. So in one instance you might have 25% use with 1 core at 100% and the others at 0%, or two cores at 50% and two at 0%, or all four at 25%. So generally speaking, the CPU usage number you are seeing doesn't really mean much.

Core parking is just Windows idling/disabling those cores and not sending any threads to them as a way to manage the CPU load and power use. Opinions vary on whether it really affects performance or not though - seems to in some instances, but then not in others.
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