MacBook Air 2011 Benchmarks Show Huge Speed & Performance Gains
The first benchmarks for the MacBook Air 2011 refresh (released alongside Lion) are rolling in, and they show that the Intel Core i5 processor in both the 13″ and 11″ variation are screamers. How fast? Well, just check out the Geekbench scores, which for both models are at least double the speed of the 2010 Core 2 Duo’s they replaced. In fact, the new MacBook Air’s are so fast that the speed of the new 1.7GHz Core i5 13″ model is faster than the 2010 MacBook Pro 17″ that was a 2.6GHz Core i7, as ElectricPig says:
To put these benchmarks into perspective, the 2010 17-inch 2.67 GHz Core i7 MacBook Pro scored 5423. For [$999] the 11-inch MacBook Air offers a benchmark on par with last year’s [$2499] 17-inch MacBook Pro.
Undoubtedly some of the speed increase is due to the ultrafast SSD, but it also shows the new Intel Core i5 contained within the 2011 MBA refresh is a screamer.
GeekBench scores are all well and good, but let’s see some real world tests shall we? MacWorld shows us their preliminary results of the 2011 MacBook Air 13″ Core i5 (times in seconds):
In the real world tests, the MacBook Air 1.7GHz Core i5 beats out both a 2010 MacBook Air Core 2 Duo and a 2011 MacBook Pro 13″ 2.3GHz Core i5 in some tests, especially anything dependent on the SSD like file duplication and ZIP archive manipulation. The only place where it scores lower than the model it replaces is with a GPU intensive task, which is unsurprising considering the relatively underperforming Intel HD 3000 GPU.
All in all these look like killer Macs, I can’t wait to try one out.
Update: More benchmark results! The following are from a fully decked out 2011 MacBook Air Core i7 at 1.8GHz, 4GB of RAM, and the 256GB SSD, and compare that model to the 2011 MacBook Pro Core i7’s as well as last years 2010 MacBook Air. Results courtesy of BareFeats:
Arguably the most disappointing results come from Portal 2 (gaming) performance, but that isn’t surprising considering the Intel HD 3000 Graphics GPU is relatively weak in comparison to the beefy GPU on the top of the line 2011 MacBook Pro:
These are killer Macs, I can’t wait to get one!
Amazon is selling some of these at a discount, be sure to check them out: