Intel Celeron vs Intel i5 – Which CPU is Better for You? (Comprehensive CPU Comparison)

When comparing the Intel Celeron to the Intel i5 you have to keep in mind that the Celeron is a budget CPU targeted toward people looking to use their computer for simple tasks and the Core i5 is a mainstream processor targeted towards your typical consumer and gamers.

It is important to understand how these processors work and what they are meant for before comparing them which is what we will do next.

Intel Celeron CPU being compared to a Core i5
Intel Core i5 CPU being compared to a Intel Celeron

What is Intel Celeron?

Celeron is a CPU model made from the Intel brand, that supports lower-end, budget-friendly computer builds.

First made in 1998, the Celeron processor was a very popular option for entry-level computers that were used to complete simple daily operations.

Over the years the processor has improved, with the current releases being better in performance and pricing from its previous models.

The Intel Celeron aims for a budget-friendly experience.

Pros and Cons of Intel Celeron


Cost Efficiency

The budget-friendly objective is set in stone as the Intel Celeron is the most affordable processor from the Intel arsenal. It allows users who need something simple for basic needs to get it without breaking the bank or stretching their finances.

Integrated Graphics

Intel Celeron has integrated graphical capabilities to handle your graphical needs without needing or purchasing a graphics card separately. So you get much more for the single price of the processor when loading videos and accessing the web.

Best for Simple Operations

It’s an excellent match for daily operations with little to zero complexity attached, like surfing the web or creating documents. The processor also gives excellent support for running lighter software packages that you need to complete these simple tasks.

Low Power Consumption

You get to enjoy a lower consumption of power since it doesn’t handle demanding operations, giving you a better battery life. It also lets you worry less about Increasing your payment for electricity bills compared to higher-end processors with increasing demands


Low-end Performance

Intel Celeron is the cheapest and matches simple tasks, which means it can’t offer you good results for demanding operations. The reason is due to their low speeds making them slower for high-performance operations like video editing and gaming.

Upgrade Limitation

It’s harder and nearly impossible to upgrade the processor since it’s made for budget use and doesn’t allow for a specification increase. The processor is also mostly fixed firmly to the motherboard, increasing the difficulty of replacing it when planning an upgrade.

Multitasking Issues

The processor is less powerful since it doesn’t support hyperthreading and has lesser cores making it struggle with multitasking. You can only handle simple tasks with this processor due to its low-end capabilities.

Limited Graphical Performance

Celeron’s graphics capabilities integrated into the processor are only enough for low demands and can’t substitute for graphics memory. So, you will need to get dedicated graphics memory to satisfy the higher graphical demands you might need for other operations.

What is Intel Core i5?

The Intel Core i5 is the most mainstream CPU on the market right now. This CPU can do just about anything you need within reason. It is not the best CPU on the market, but it is certainly not the worst.

If you need a reliable CPU and aren’t 100% sure what you need it for the Core i5 would be the safest option.

Pros and Cons of the Core i5 processors

Pros and Cons of Intel Core i5


Great Performance

Intel Core i5 CPUs offer relatively good performance in gaming and workstation computers. This CPU is targeted toward the largest audience of computer users. The Core i5 processor is the baseline of performance for CPUs and is usually considered the best-value CPU because of its performance abilities and price range.

Average Power Consumption

The Core i5 has a pretty average power consumption having a TDP of between 15W and 95W. (This depends on what model i5 you have.)

Hyper-Threading Support

The processor supports hyper-threading, which makes it handle multiple operations simultaneously, increasing your benefits and reducing time when completing different tasks. 

To learn more about this check out: “What are CPU Threads?”

Integrated Graphics

Intel has done a fairly good job of keeping up with the performance of integrated graphics inside of their CPUs, and the Core i5 does not disappoint, especially with the new addition of Iris. Iris is the integrated graphics they put in their newest generation of CPUs which includes the newest models of the Intel Core i5.


More Expensive To Purchase

Although the Core i5 is a better CPU than the Celeron that also means it will come at a heftier price.

The Intel Celeron is a budget CPU so some models of the i5 will be more than triple the price of the Celeron CPU. However, the performance benefits you are getting are very much worth it especially if you have the budget for this kind of CPU.

Produces More Heat and Higher Power Consumption

With more performance comes more heat and power consumption. The fact that the i5 will have a higher power consumption means you might need to purchase a better power supply, and because it will also produce more heat you might also need to purchase an aftermarket CPU cooler. (Especially if you are overclocking.)

Overclocking Limitations

The Intel Core i5 hasn’t always been an overclockable CPU. Intel started making these CPUs overclockable right around the time that AMDs Ryzen CPUs started taking off with their overclocking potential. So, if you are overclocking you will need to get a more recent model of the Intel Core i5.

Differences Between Intel Celeron and Intel Core i5

CPU TypeIntel CeleronIntel Core i5
Core Count24 to 6
Thread Count24 to 12
Clock Speed1.1GHz to 2.8GHz2.5GHz to 5.0GHz
Thermal Design Power6W to 35W15W to 95W
Integrated GraphicsYesYes
Manufacturing Process14nm, 10nm14nm, 10nm
Cache Size1MB to 4MB3MB to 12MB
Graphics Base Frequency300MHz to 1050MHz350MHz to 1200MHz
Maximum Memory Supported8GB to 16GB32GB to 128GB
Virtualization TechnologyYesYes
Pricing (USD)$42 to $100$180 to $300
Quick Sync Video TechnologyYesYes
Hyper-Threading TechnologyNoYes (Most Models)
Supported Memory TypeDDR4, LPDDR4DDR4, LPDDR4

Clock Speeds

Intel Core i5 completes operations faster than the Celeron processor due to the difference in the clock speeds between them. Celeron has a speed ranging between 1.1GHz to 2.8GHz, while Intel core i3 speed is between 2.5GHz to 5.0GHz. The difference makes Celeron serve you for basic tasks but will lose to Intel core i5 when handling more intensive operations.


Celeron Is manufactured to be budget-friendly, making it fall among the cheapest components you can find on the market. On the other hand, Intel Core i3 satisfies more demands but has its pricing set above that of Celeron despite being affordable. You can get a Celeron processor for prices between $42 to $100, while Intel Core i3 prices go from $110 to $230.

Thermal Design

The thermal design of both offer different results based on performance, with Celeron consuming less power and generating less heat. The Intel Celeron has its TDP set at 6W to 35W, which is lower than the Intel Core i5 set at 15W to 95W. Intel core i5 also generates more heat proportional to the performance it offers, which is higher than Celeron.

Memory Support

The Intel Core i5 provides better support in terms of memory as its capable of handling 32GB to 128GB maximum memory. On the other hand, Celeron can only handle a maximum memory between 8GB and 16GB creating a gap between processors. The gap reduces Celeron’s ability to handle memory-intensive operations compared to Intel core i5 increasing the demand in the market.


Celeron doesn’t have hyper-threading support, which makes it lose out in efficiency when handling multiple operations simultaneously during use. However, the Intel Core i5 supports this feature and easily handles multiple operations running at the same time on your computer.

Threads and Cores

Intel core i5 processors are manufactured with more threads and cores than Intel Celeron processors, which makes the i5 perform better both when gaming and doing heavy computing tasks. Celeron has a max of 2 cores and threads each, while Intel core i5 comes with 4 to 6 cores complimented by 4 to 12 threads. This feature increases the performance of the Intel Core i5, making it more efficient and reliable than the Celeron processor.

You should also read More Cores or higher clock speeds when gaming.

Final Thoughts

Both Intel Core i5 and Celeron processors can be great choices depending on what you need to use your computer for.

Celeron is targeted towards very budget-friendly computers, that will function to browse the internet and complete very simple tasks.

Whereas, the Core i5 is a mid-tier CPU that can be used for gaming, simple workstations, and everyday use. To be honest both these processors are in two totally different categories.

If you want a more similar comparison for budget-CPU low-end CPUs you should check out: Intel Celeron vs Pentium CPUs.

If you are looking for a more mid-tier CPU with good value the Ryzen 5 vs Core i5 would be a better comparison.

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