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Benchmarks for Mid-2012 MacBook Pro and MacBook Air

With the first Mid-2012 MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models reaching the public, Primate Labs has collated some data from its Geekbench 2 benchmarking database to assess the raw performance of these systems compared to their predecessors.

For the MacBook Pro, Primate Labs has data on four different models: the new Retina model with 2.3 GHz and 2.6 GHz processors and the non-Retina model with 2.3 GHz and 2.7 GHz processors. The top-of-the-line 2.7 GHz system registers with a Geekbench average score of 12,303, roughly 16% higher than the top-of-the-line 2.5 GHz Sandy Bridge system from the previous generation.


Notably, the leaked MacBook Pro benchmark from mid-May does appear to have been legitimate, with details corresponding to the new non-Retina 15-inch MacBook Pro. That machine is designated MacBookPro9,1, while the 13-inch model is designated MacBookPro9,2. The Retina MacBook Pro appears as MacBookPro10,1.

On the MacBook Air side, top-of-the-line systems are seeing boosts of over 20% in Geekbench scores over their corresponding predecessors. As with the MacBook Pro, even the low-end systems of the new generation outperform the high end of the previous generation.


Geekbench testing focuses on processor and memory performance, providing comparisons of raw power between machines but only telling part of the story. But with these machines seeing significant boosts in graphics performance with the addition of Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics and/or the NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, and systems with solid-state drives using faster drives than in the previous generation, real-world performance should see marked improvement.

Related roundup: MacBook Air

Top Rated Comments

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33 months ago
Chess will run blazingly now!
Rating: 29 Votes
33 months ago
These kinds of benchmarks were more relevant in the powerPC days. Now it's pretty much, "Yup, those faster intel processors that we already saw the benchmarks of are in the new MBP."
Rating: 11 Votes
33 months ago
Can't wait for my 13" Pro to get here tomorrow!!! Bummed to not see any benchmarks for it yet though...
Rating: 6 Votes
33 months ago

Chess will run blazingly now!


No kidding! I remember back in the DOS days playing Battle Chess (or something like that...) and it took like 30 seconds to 2 minutes for the computer to think. ;)
Rating: 4 Votes
33 months ago
Interesting that the numbers are very similar to the leaked benchmarks from a few months ago, especially considering that there was an iMac benchmark too. Maybe Apple was developing two new products, the Retina MBP and some new iMac. Maybe instead of shadowing each other by releasing them the same day they decided to break their releases up, or perhaps the iMac isn't ready yet. Those benchmarks for the new iMac are the biggest evidence of a potential iMac release in the next month or so, IMO. A man can dream right?
Rating: 4 Votes
33 months ago

1.8 and 2.0 isnt hardly worth the extra investment on the air?


Upgrading from 1.8 (i5) to 2.0 (i7) costs $100, which is about 4.7% of the cost of the MBA 13" (i5) fully configured. For that you get a 1.3% increase in gb score.

I don't like that math.
Rating: 4 Votes
33 months ago

So if the Macbook Pro geekbench was legitimate, that would suggest the Ivy Bridge iMac was legitimate too. Can we expect a silent spec bump?

You can also see that the motherboard number in the leaked MacBookPro9,1 is exactly the same of the motherboard number in the benchmarks coming out. BIOS slightly different. Now i think they were indeed real on the MBP side, let's hope for the iMac too.
Rating: 3 Votes
33 months ago

Funny how the retina and same non-retina MBP scored with the retina being just slightly higher. Pushing 4x the pixels would think it would be less?

Geekbench is a CPU test so what the GPU is doing would not impact it in any way.

The one plausible explanation, if the difference was at least a couple of hundred points, might have been the improved cooling system in the RMBP, which would allow Turbo Boost to stay on for longer.

However, 44 points is an insignificant difference in this benchmark. I can run it over and over again and get such small variances on each run. This is due to the fact that it is run by users in an uncontrolled manner. Therefore the computer could be doing various things whilst the test is running.
Rating: 3 Votes
33 months ago

Pretty much...

Intel has such an advance in CPU performances over AMD that they focused this generation on the graphics (that still lag AMD integrated graphics but are much better than previous Intel offerings), and the implementation of a new foundry process (3D transistor to improve efficiency of the CPU) reducing consumption.

The final blow for AMD dominance in the integrated GPU market (for cheap laptop or small form-factor computers) is supposed to be Intel's next generation Haswell, with further improved graphics.

Whether we like it or not CPU single-threaded performances per GHz (most apps aren't well optimized) haven't evolved a lot in the last couple of years and GPUs have become more important with the introduction of OpenCL.

Ivy Bridge is a big leap in that regard since it's Intel's first Integrated GPU supporting it (OpenCL Programs ran on the CPU on Sandy Bridge defeating the purpose of OpenCL), personally that's one of the reasons I've been waiting for Ivy Bridge before making a purchase decision... And I'm still waiting since I was looking more for an iMac or mac mini even ^^.

On-die eDRAM appears to be next year's magic bullet for the IGP arena. Both Intel and AMD are working on getting a super shader packed IGP that is not crippled by sharing the DDR3 memory bus next year.

Haswell will have improved Ivy Bridge shaders but you are looking at a jump from 16 to a whopping 40 on GT3 and the inclusion of eDRAM. Hueg dies guaranteed.
Rating: 3 Votes
33 months ago

Here are some unboxed pics, forget the performance the retina display is incredible!

Unboxed MacBook Pro with Retina Display (http://blog.soundearphones.com/odds-ends/macbook-pro-retina-display-unboxing/)


That screen is MEGA crisp, even from looking at those compressed images on my iMac I can see how sharp that thing is . . . GEEZE!

That makes a 17" Retina even more drool worthy.
Rating: 3 Votes

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