I found that 64 Bit single cores do take some time for rendering, Dual core processor can save you more than 40% in time.
While your processor may be one issue, the other would the the RAM, 512MB is a minimum requirement, If you add memory to your laptop you may find that you get a little bit or a quicker responce.
The IDE harddrives on a laptop are slow, they are normally 5400 RPM and therefore slower than a desktop 7200 RPM. You can buy faster drives and it is generally considered that the performance gain is around 50%.
There are also some laptops with SATA harddrive connections.
To answer the other question, as mark has said, alot of pro software is designed for dual processor /dual core and maks better use of the processors.
You would be better off comming of the laptop and on to a desktop to save some time. I say you have a laptop as you posted that you have a AMD 64 Turion, this is a laptops processor and not a desktop.
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