i'm having trouble understanding how to read intel chip speeds

It's strange that the processors are at very similar speeds 9 years later.
I already explained that, twice.
Another factor to know, is Intel for over 5 years was incredibly stagnant due to severe lack of competition until 2018. From the 6th gen to the 10th gen used the SAME Skylake architecture for all cores, just mildly tweaked year after year.
The 6300U on the other hand says "5%" because it's a low power variant, that's what the U is. It's a 15W chip and lower clock speeds. So not only is it technically still faster, but it's doing it at 20W less power draw.
Your current runs at 45W, the 6300U runs at 15W. 30 watt difference, lower core clocks, and yet still manages to stay faster. On the desktop side, an i5 6500 isn't much faster than a i5 2500k. Differences in efficiency, that's about it explained in quote one. Let's also not forget, Userbench is not a good comparison.
Also did you mean *faster* RAM or just more RAM?
Faster and more RAM. You have DDR3, the 840 G3 uses DDR4. It will also have a faster SSD than what you can put into your current machine.
OK awesome thanks!

Someone else told me there isn't much difference b/w DDR3 and DDR4. So I guess you're saying that there in fact is. Is it significantly faster?
Is 8 GB RAM enough for my purposes (20 tab browsing, excel, videos, pdfs) or do I need 16 GB?
You said userbench isn't a good site. Is there one you recommend?
Your current machine will either be using 1066, 1333, or at best 1600MHz DDR3. These machines start at DDR4 2400 and HP likes to use 2666. Individually not that big of a deal, but as a combined package it adds up, especially in laptops where you're held back by power consumption.

No, not really. Userbench is bad because there's no control, it's just a bunch of users inputting data. When dealing with mobile it gets even worse.
Best case scenario you can find the laptops you're looking at on Notebookcheck and compare that way.

Tabs and Excel are RAM intensive, you'll want 16.
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