MacBook Pro with Core i7 processor benchmarks: 50% faster than Core 2 Duo model

Apr 13, 2010 - 9 Comments

macbook pro i7 benchmarks

The new MacBook Pro’s have barely been out a few hours and Gizmodo has already benchmarked the top of the line 15″ model that features a Core i7 processor running at 2.66Ghz, check out the graph above for the gains against the previous top-end model, the Core 2 Duo at 2.8Ghz. Even ripping a DVD with Handbrake took almost 40% less time on the new Core i7 chip. Some of the performance gain is undoubtedly the result of Turbo Boost, a feature of the Core i5 and i7 processors which take the 2.6Ghz MacBook Pro to 3.3Ghz in times of intense CPU usage. So the new Core i5/i7 MacBook Pro’s are confirmed to be blazing fast, pardon me while I mop up my drool.

After seeing these huge increases in performance, I’m a little confused as to why Apple didn’t put a Core i5 into my personal favorite MacBook Pro, the 13″ model. TechCrunch speculates that Apple chose to forgo haw computing power in favor of the extended battery life, but that seems like an odd compromise for a Pro machine. Apparently I’m not the only one who wonders about the use of an older CPU in the 13″ model, according to MacRumors, someone emailed Steve Jobs asking about it and received this response:

“We chose killer graphics plus 10 hour battery life over a very small CPU speed increase. Users will see far more performance boost from the speedy graphics.”

If the above benchmarks are any indicator of general speed increases when moving from a Core 2 Duo to the new Intel Core i5/i7 chips, I’m not so sure I agree with that statement, but I imagine some real world benchmarks on the 13″ will soon appear and we’ll have an answer. So while the 13″ models minor update has raised a few curious eyebrows, the specs of the new MacBook Pro 15″ and 17″ model are undoubtedly very powerful and quite enticing.

Anyone have an extra $2300 laying around? That MacBook Pro 15″ with a Core i7 chip and high-res screen is looking like a Mac lovers dream.

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Posted by: William Pearson in Mac Setups, News

9 Comments

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  1. Haunted says:

    The reason you don’t see the Core i5 chip in the 13″ is because of NVidia and Intels little hissy fit, since NVidia can’t make integrated chips for the i5. It’s not Apple’s fault, it’s Intel’s really. As a result, I don’t think the new MBP13 represents a pro machine at all, I would have a hard time recommending one.

  2. bythread says:

    the macbook pro 13″ is a big letdown, looks like i won’t upgrade after all

  3. jared says:

    Agreed, I don’t want a huge 15″ brick. Steve Jobs defends the new MacBook 13″ Intel Pentium II 133mhz processor here:

    http://www.9to5mac.com/steve-jobs-email-core-i7-duo-340973462

    Faster graphics- Why couldn’t it have had these anyway?

    and slightly longer battery life? The other MacBook Pro’s have 8 hours! That’s good enough for me.

  4. For me, the big story here (besides the processor bump,) is the greatly extended battery life. If the 10 hour claims are actually true, this really puts MacBooks light years ahead of any other laptop. This will be big for anyone who travels and don’t have ready access to AC power to constantly recharge their batteries.

  5. Eleanor Rigby says:

    I definitely wish the 13″ got the i5 too, but on the other hand as Marty points out the 10 hour battery life is amazing.

    Has anyone seen real world battery life tests for it yet? The only laptop I know of that gets 10 hours of battery are the tiny netbooks like the Asus 1008 series, but they have a Atom processor and 10″ screen plus you’re stuck with Windows XP (Hello 2001).

    I bet you by Christmas there will be a 13″ with an i5 though, and that’s when I’ll upgrade, I can wait it out, I think.

  6. blacklight says:

    Here is why the 13″ did not get the i5 or i3 chip:

    http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/2010/04/why-the-13-macbook-pro-didnt-get-a-core-i5-upgrade.ars

    If you’re too lazy to read, it basically says: Money in Apples pockets, plus they didn’t want to have to redesign the logic board yet because of Intel & NVidia’s lawsuits

  7. […] model, especially since the 13″ MacBook Pro really underperforms with its C2D chip in benchmarks next to the new MacBook Pro Core i5/i7 models. This refreshed MacBook with identical specs really suggests that the MacBook Pro 13″ […]

  8. rks9 says:

    sorry to depress,my $1200 Dell XPS 15 L502x i72630QM 8GB RAM 750GB ST9750420AS rates HIGHER on all tests. cheers.

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