Got a tip for us? Share it...

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

Resubscribe Now Close

Upcoming 12-Core Xeon CPU Destined for Apple's New Mac Pro Posts Impressive Benchmark Scores

Just days after Apple teased its upcoming radical redesign for the Mac Pro back in June, a Geekbench 2 result appeared to offer some data on just such a Mac Pro running a 12-core 2.7 GHz Intel Xeon E5-2697 v2 processor, 64 GB of RAM, and a custom build of OS X Mavericks. Many observers were disappointed to see that the machine received a Geekbench 2 score of just under 24,000, only marginally higher than a top-end 2012 Mac Pro, a machine that was considered by many to be outdated from the day it was launched.

Others had noted that prototype hardware, beta software, and a 32-bit Geekbench run were likely to have limited the performance seen in the benchmarks, with the final shipping version of the Mac Pro due for launch later this year perhaps seeing substantial improvements under a 64-bit version of Geekbench 2.

Tom's Hardware has now gotten its hands on this exact processor expected to make its way into the Mac Pro and put it through rigorous testing in a Windows setup, subjecting the system to numerous benchmarking tools including the 64-bit version Geekbench 2. While the results do not provide an exact answer to how well the chip will benchmark in a Mac Pro, it does offer some perspective on what kind of performance might be possible.
The leaked result was run using the free 32-bit build of Geekbench on a pre-release build of OS X Mavericks. Switching over to the paid 64-bit build of the benchmark adds SSE support, though that’s still a pre-Pentium 4 extension. Tab between the 32- and 64-bit runs on Xeon X5675-based systems and you’ll find that the SSE-capable build averages 14%-better performance.

Curious as to how the very same 12-core Xeon [E5-2697 V2] compared in Windows, I ran my own test on a 64-bit build of Geekbench and scored in excess of 30,000 points—more than 25% faster than the leaked number.
xeon_e5_2697_v2_blender
Strong performance in multi-threaded Blender 3D modeling benchmark

The full set of testing benchmarks pitted the high-end 12-core Ivy Bridge-EP Xeon processor against a variety of Sandy Bridge and other Ivy Bridge chips, as well as a Core i7-4770K Haswell chip, finding that the Xeon E5-2697 V2 generally topped the performance charts in multi-threaded tests but was beaten in many single-threaded tests by the faster chips with fewer cores.

xeon_e5_2697_v2_itunes
Relatively poor performance in single-threaded iTunes benchmark

As noted, the benchmark scores for the Xeon E5-2697 V2 generated from these tests won't necessarily translate exactly to a Mac Pro running OS X Mavericks, but they do provide some confidence that the redesigned Mac Pro will indeed be a significant improvement over its predecessor for the most demanding multi-threaded tasks.

Related roundup: Mac Pro

Top Rated Comments

(View all)

9 months ago
I really want one; but I really don't need a 4th mortgage.
Rating: 20 Positives
9 months ago
Now if only Apple would put TWO of these in the new Mac Pro, instead of only offering a single socket configuration...
Rating: 15 Positives
9 months ago

I really want one; but I really don't need a 4th mortgage.


I really want one, but I can't figure out how I will fit four hard drives in the thing.
Rating: 13 Positives
9 months ago
Why are Mac fans excited about the performance of a Windows system?

Especially when they know that there will be Windows systems with two of these chips - but Apples will have only one....
Rating: 12 Positives
9 months ago

What applications are you using or plan on using that requires more CPU than GPU that would need a second CPU? I'm just curious.


Safari, Mail and iTunes.
Rating: 10 Positives
9 months ago
Really curious to see the price points on the new MP.

Also, hoping for a new display.
Rating: 8 Positives
9 months ago
Hmm... And I just finished building my render machine with 2x 2687w xeons (16 cores) with 64gbs of ram and a GTX Titan.

I feel like I should have waited a few months?
Rating: 8 Positives
9 months ago
People still miss the forest for the trees: the Mac Pro is designed for the future, not the past, and gets much of its performance from the extra GPU. Luckily, I'm buying for the future too!

And that SSD!

It's really annoying to have a really powerful Mac Pro bottlenecked when you press "open with..." on something and have to wait for an external hard drive to wake up while Finder hangs.


I don't believe you're required to allow drives to sleep. And I don't think Thunderbolt makes drives sleep in some way that is different from internal bays.

P.S. It's fun to see people who would never buy 24 cores complain to other people who would never buy 24 cores that they wish they could buy 24 cores. "Bullet list marketing" at its finest :p Catchy specs over results? No mention of OpenCL, even from people who like to brag about performance numbers?
Rating: 7 Positives
9 months ago
It's really annoying to have a really powerful Mac Pro bottlenecked when you press "open with..." on something and have to wait for an external hard drive to wake up while Finder hangs.

Edit: I know that you can disable hard drive sleep but don't want to have them always awake, and I have already excluded them from Spotlight search.
Rating: 7 Positives
9 months ago
It may turn out that it has been worth the wait... As with anything price is a huge factor... if the entry model, as i expect is $2500... very good... if they can find a way to give us a base model for $2000, revolutionary... if it is $3000 I am sticking with a Hackintosh. (I will still buy it, but i will be grumbling the whole time)

I need to replace all my CAD stations... and I will not use iMacs... I really don't want to deal with trying to build and maintain Hacks.... I don't need huge drives on everyone.. I just need graphic and processor power.. and this looks like a great machine.
Rating: 7 Positives

[ Read All Comments ]