You can check the amount of cores you have in your CPU by using built in OS services like Task Manager, and System Information. You can also install and use trusted and free third party software like CPU-Z to find the information regarding your cores. And finally, you can use the manufacturer’s spec sheet online to figure out the amount of cores you have in your processor.
The amount of cores you have in your CPU is a direct gauge of its overall performance. Every CPU has separate benchmarks for single-core and multi-core performance. Hence it is quite important to know many cores you have in your CPU in order to find out how it will do on benchmarks like Cinebench R23 or Passmark.
While multitasking efficiency is the first thing that comes to mind when we talk about having many cores on a CPU, there are certain professional tasks like rendering and encoding that are heavily reliant on having a lot of cores as well.
On top of that, most of the newer games, particularly the AAA titles, make use of multiple cores for better performance as well.
5 Way to Check How Many Cores You Have
There are countless ways to check how many cores you have on your CPU in all environments including Windows, MacOS, iPhone or Android.
Let us talk about how to figure the amount of cores in each of these OS.
1. Finding How Many Cores You Have on Windows
On Windows there are several ways to check out the number of Cores your CPU has. We will have a look at a few ways:
- Using Task Manager
- Using System Information
- Using Command Prompt
- Using Third Party Software
- Using the Manufacturer’s Spec Sheet
i. Through Task Manager
The first method is through the Task Manager. Just right-click on the Task Bar and then choose Task Manager. In the interface of the Task Manager, select the Performance tab and look for the field marked as “Cores”.
This particular CPU, i.e, the Intel Core i7-7700HQ has 4 Cores.
Do Not Be Confused by Logical Processors
You must not confuse Logical Processors with Cores.
Logical processors are basically the amount of threads you have on your CPU. Every core essentially has as single thread. However, on CPU with multi-threading technology (i.e Intel Hyper-threading), they can have 2 threads per core.
The number next to the field marked as “Logical Processors” is 8 since the processor in question here, i.e the Intel Core i7-7700HQ, offers hyper-threading and thus has 2 threads per physical Core.
ii. Through the System Information App
The second method is to press the Windows Key + R to open the “Run” dialog box. Type msinfo32 and press Enter.
The System Information app will open. Choose “Summary” and look for “Processor” details. It will show you how many cores your CPU has.
iii. Using Command Line
To check the Core number on your Windows computer using the command line, open cmd and type the following:
wmic cpu get NumberOfCores
Then press Enter.
Also Read: How to Update Processors Drivers?
iv. Through Manufacturer’s Website
If you know the model name and number of your processor, you can head over to the vendor’s website to get all the information you need for the processor including the number of cores.
This is an excellent method to find out the number of Cores you have if you do not have the CPU installed in your PC yet.
Image: Intel Core i7-7700HQ Specs
v. Using Third-Party Software
You can also try third-party free software such as CPU-Z. With this software, you can not only check the amount of Cores your CPU has, but it will also give you a myriad of comprehensive information about your CPU.
Also Read: Is a Dual Core Processor Good for Gaming?
2. Number of Cores in a Mac
On MacOS, you can find out the number of cores you CPU has from the System Report service.
- Press the Apple menu placed in the top-left corner of the screen.
- Go to About This Mac, then System Report, then Hardware.
- You can check the CPU cores by looking at the “Total Number of Cores” below the “Number of Processors” number.
3. Number of Cores in an iPhone
While there’s no direct way to find the number of cores and other CPU characteristics in an iPhone, you can download and install the “Lirum Device Info Lite” app from the App Store.
4. Number of Cores in Android Devices
If you own an Android phone or tablet, it’s also easy to check the number of processor cores you have using an app called CPU-Z.
Along with the number of cores, this app gives you a plethora of information regarding the rest of device’s hardware.
Why Processor Cores Matter for Your Devices?
As mentioned earlier, every CPU has two benchmarks that you need to take in to consideration when purchasing them i.e Single Core and Multi Core.
When you review the benchmarks scores for processors using tests like Cinebench R20, Cinebench R23, Passmark etc, all of these offer separate results for single-core and multi-core performance.
The multi-core performance of a CPU is mostly judged based on, you guessed it, the number of cores it has.
If your tasks require the use of multiple cores then you need a CPU with a high score in the multi-core performance department.
These days almost everything utilizes multiples. Whether you are a someone who works on large and complicated excel sheets with a lot of formulas, or perhaps if you are someone who often does video rendering and encoding, then what you need a CPU with a high core count.
In fact, if you are a gamer, most of the AAA titles make sure of multiple cores these days.
Let us look how the Single-Core and Multi-Core performance scores vary from CPU to CPU using Cinebench R23 scores.
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X vs AMD Ryzen 7 5800X Single Core Results
Here you can see that both processors have more or less the same single core performance despite Ryzen 5 5600X having 6 cores and the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X having 8 cores.
Most of the tasks whether you are graphic designing, photo editing, creating floor layouts in CAD, or even gaming, leverage single cores the most.
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X vs AMD Ryzen 7 5800X Multi Core Results
Here you can see, quite intuitively, that the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X is 25% slower in multi core performance, compared to the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X, which has 25% more cores i.e 6 vs 8.
How Many Cores do CPUs Have These Days?
Considering the latest generations i.e AMD 5000 series and Intel 11th Gen processors, you can expect the following max amount of cores in CPUs.
Intel Desktop CPUs
- 10th Gen Intel Core i3: 4 Cores / 8 Threads
- 11th Gen Intel Core i5: 6 Cores / 12 Threads
- 111th Gen Intel Core i7: 8 Cores / 16 Threads
- 11th Gen Intel Core i9: 8 Cores / 16 Threads
AMD Desktop CPU
- AMD Ryzen 3 5000 Series: 4 Cores / 8 Threads
- AMD Ryzen 5 5000 Series: 6 Cores / 12 Threads
- AMD Ryzen 7 5000 Series: 8 Cores / 16 Threads
- AMD Ryzen 9 5000 Series: 16 Cores / 32 Threads
In this article, we talked comprehensively about how to check how many cores you have on different devices and also why having a lot of cores matters.
By being aware of the CPU cores, you get a better idea of the multi-tasking capabilities of your devices with different operating systems from Windows to macOS to Android.
It is also worth highlighting here that a Core in an Android or an Apple phone does not have the same architecture or the performance grade of those found on laptop and desktop CPUs.
Learning how many cores a CPU has is also important to in order to gauge whether you are overspending or not.
For instance, if you do not plan to work on tasks that require a very high core count, then you are better off going for an economical option i.e a CPU with a lower core count but with a good single core performance.