Arduino vs ESP32 are they not the same but faster ?

Hi All
Just been looking at some ESP32 LORA boards and as far as I know are programmed the same way as arduinos. I have no interest in wifi or internet connections at all...Im just looking a pure processing power when connected to some sensors. I did look at Teensy`s but they are way more expensive.
I am looking at real time rs232 sampling with unknown baud rates from variose sensors through out a machine. Sampling these outputs means I can simply send the same data back and get a similar machine reaction.
I am a beginner so I can't really understand fast optimised code ...so Im using basic code and throwing loads of power at it.

If you dont need the connectivity then look at the MKRZERO which is even cheaper than the LoRa models.

You will need to know a little about BAUD rates whichever board you choose as the TX side and RX side need to be the same.

Again generally not an issue if you are using the IDE's serial console but if using anything else to receive the data it will need to know a little.

The way the MKR boards use the serial port is quite good and adaptive too.