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Early benchmarks for Apple’s new ARM-powered Macs show the hardware dwarfing the performance of all previous Macs on single-core tasks.
On Wednesday, benchmarks for the three new Macs began appearing on Geekbench, which lets anyone test their computer’s performance. They show the products scoring about 35 to 40 percent higher on single-core performance when compared to the last crop of Intel-powered Macs, which previously held the top spots.
The highest score came from the ARM-powered MacBook Air, which obtained 1,732 on single-core performance. And as you can see, the score soars above all previous Macs, including 2019’s Mac Pro desktop, which uses an Intel Xeon chip.
The score also tops single-core performance from AMD’s new Ryzen 5000 processors.
The new Macs were able to achieve the benchmarks, thanks to Apple’s new M1 chip, an 8-core CPU processor built with TSMC’s cutting-edge 5-nanometer manufacturing process. The chip also utilizes ARM’s computing architecture, which is found in the company’s iPhones and iPads.
Although the benchmarks are impressive, the new Macs fall back to Earth when you look at the multi-core performance, which hovers between 7,097 and 7,545. In contrast, the Mac Pro reigns supreme with a 18,950 score due to its 28-core Intel Xeon chip.
Still, the new Macs scored higher than a $2,999 16-inch MacBook Pro fitted with Intel’s i9-9980HK chip, which scored a 6,869 on multi-core performance. The 16-inch MacBook Pro was also the previous record holder among MacBooks for best multi-core performance.
Of course, Geekbench is only one benchmark provider among many, and there’s been plenty of debate about its accuracy. Nevertheless, the early scores lend some credibility to Apple’s claims that the upcoming hardware will offer massive performance gains over the company’s previous Mac products. Apple went as far as boasting that the M1 chip can outperform rival laptop processors at any power level.
The new Macs go on sale next week. The Mac mini starts at $699, the MacBook Air at $999, and the 13-inch MacBook Pro at $1,299. Stay tuned for our reviews when we can put the new hardware to the test.
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