New in OS X: Get MacRumors Push Notifications on your Mac

Resubscribe Now Close

Early Benchmarks Reveal New MacBook Air Rivaling High-End 2010 MacBook Pro

Electricpig reports that early benchmarking data obtained by Laptopmag.com from Apple's new MacBook Air models released today demonstrate significant performance improvements over the previous generation and even other Apple notebooks. Testing was performed using the Geekbench benchmarking tools.


According to the report, not only do the new MacBook Air models at least double the scores of the previous generation in testing with Geekbench, but the new machines also compare extremely favorably to even high-end MacBook Pro models from last year.
The new 13-inch MacBook Air earned a Geekbench score of 5860, a bump in performance of over 100 percent compared to last year’s model. The 11-inch MacBook Air was even more impressive, skyrocketing from 2024 to 5040 for 149 percent increase.

To put these benchmarks into perspective, the 2010 17-inch 2.67 GHz Core i7 MacBook Pro scored 5423. For £849 the 11-inch MacBook Air offers a benchmark on par with last year’s £2099 17-inch MacBook Pro.
Geekbench testing focuses on processor and memory performance, providing comparisons of raw power between machines but only telling part of the story. Consequently, it remains to be seen how the new MacBook Air models will stack up in real-world situations, but early indications suggest that Apple's ultraportable lineup has indeed received a major increase in performance.

Related Roundup: MacBook Air
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Air (Don't Buy)


Top Rated Comments

(View all)

65 months ago
If only there was a 15" Air :rolleyes:
Rating: 15 Votes
65 months ago
Not entirely surprising, considering how aggressive the Turbo Boost is.

Everyone should keep in mind that Ivy Bridge is next year. This is when we should see a quad-core MacBook Air (and Mac Mini), and 8-core iMacs. Additionally, there will also be the move to 22nm fabrication processes in addition to 3D transistors, which should be comparable to a fabrication shrink itself.

If you think this year was a big boost, wait until you see what Intel has in store for next year.
Rating: 13 Votes
65 months ago

Maybe I am crazy, but Ive just realised that I want new 11inch MBA and Thunderbolt Display. Am I crazy? I need feedback. I want it mostly for Aperture and Photoshop. Cinema display has firewire so I can connect my external drives. Seems perfect. Doesnt it?


Sounds tempting, right? An external display/docking station for desktop-style use, 2nd-gen Core speed, SSD speed, plus the most portable laptop ever—all in one?

But you’re flat-out crazy if you’d consider an Air for serious work: I’ve done that (Photoshop, Flash, OpenOffice) for 3 years on my Air, and it means that ALL MY WORK is right there, ready to grab with one hand and run out the door! No synching needed, nothing to think about. I just have all my projects with me SO much more of the time than I used to with my 15” bulkmonster. And yet I can do everything I need right on the Air.

That means I’m never away from work :( My clients can get me to do stuff all the time!

Do yourself a favor: if you do pro work, get the bulkiest laptop you can, or a giant tower, and tell your clients you’ll "deal with it" when you get back to the office :)

Don’t get addicted to the Air like me. Save yourself.
Rating: 13 Votes
65 months ago
Hahahaha. Give the MBP a decent SSD, then we'll see what's faster.

Anyways, I'm mostly curious as to the IGP's performance.
Rating: 8 Votes
65 months ago

If only there was a 15" Air :rolleyes:


Keep in mind that the resolution of the 13" MBA is equal to that of the 15" MBP.
Rating: 8 Votes
65 months ago
I wonder if other benchmarks can reproduce this or if it is an artificial result. It seems hard to believe this year's 1.7 GHz processor can outperform last year's 2.7 GHz processor
Rating: 7 Votes
65 months ago
My late-2010 MBA 13 is all of a sudden feeling quite sluggish. And the keyboard is decidedly unlit. Oh, what to do...

;)
Rating: 7 Votes
65 months ago

I'm going to make a wild guess here and say that the MBP tested doesn't have an SSD? It doesn't seem to say on the site.


Hahahaha. Give the MBP a decent SSD, then we'll see what's faster.

Anyways, I'm mostly curious as to the IGP's performance.


Geekbench doesn't measure hard drive performance, so in fact the Macbook Air would only come out even further ahead if that were taken in account. It's strictly CPU and memory performance being measured here.

Do these benchmarks take into consideration the GPU?


Nope.
Rating: 7 Votes
65 months ago
BuTZ ThEY AR UndR PoWEReD anD HaZ ApLE Tax
Rating: 7 Votes
65 months ago
Fingers crossed that real-world performance approaches the 2010 MBP as well. It would a real problem solver for me.
Rating: 6 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]