Benchmarks show modest performance gains with Apple's new Retina MacBook Pros

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2014
Apple's new Haswell-powered Retina MacBook Pros have started finding their way into the online score aggregator for popular benchmark suite Geekbench, less than 24 hours after their unveiling.

New 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro


Backed by Intel's latest silicon, the new MacBook Pros --?which first began showing up in late June --?achieve similar gains to those notched by the MacBook Air after its Haswell refresh. The laptops' appearance on the site was first noticed by MacRumors.

Single-core scores, which measure performance using only a single CPU core, average 3108 for the 15-inch model and 2823 for the 13-inch variant. Those scores represent modest increases of four and two percent, respectively, over the previous generation.

Despite the moderate upgrade in performance, Tuesday's hardware refresh was still rather significant. Moving to the new Haswell architecture, alongside efficiency improvements courtesy of OS X Mavericks's new power management features, allowed both the 13- and 15-inch models to make battery life gains, increasing to nine and eight hours, respectively, on a single charge.

The 13-inch model also slimmed down to the same 0.71-inch thickness as its larger-screened sibling, while both variants dropped $200 off of their base configuration price tag (Mac Price Guide).

Additionally, Apple introduced faster 802.11ac wireless networking and PCIe-based storage, and provided for expansion by equipping the laptops with twin Thunderbolt 2 ports.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    yojimbo007yojimbo007 Posts: 1,156member
    Gains... Longer battery life.. Faster wifi... And Cheaper ! Sounds like a winner !
  • Reply 2 of 26

    I thought battery life would have been much better. If the Air picked up an hour from Mavericks and the MBP 15" only picked up an hour? 

  • Reply 3 of 26
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,216member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Richard Getz View Post

     

    I thought battery life would have been much better. If the Air picked up an hour from Mavericks and the MBP 15" only picked up an hour? 


     

    Well remember the 15" MBP Retina has a true Core i7 not a dual core like MBA has, even when upgraded to a Core i7. It also has a 15" a screen, and its a retina. Also, the graphics are more intensive as well. The fact that they were able to pick up an hour with all of this stuff is amazing in itself IMO. 

  • Reply 4 of 26
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    yojimbo007 wrote: »
    Gains... Longer battery life.. Faster wifi... And Cheaper ! Sounds like a winner !

    The 13" should have better GPU performance by a large margin.
  • Reply 5 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macxpress View Post

     

     

    Well remember the 15" MBP Retina has a true Core i7 not a dual core like MBA has, even when upgraded to a Core i7. It also has a 15" a screen, and its a retina. Also, the graphics are more intensive as well. The fact that they were able to pick up an hour with all of this stuff is amazing in itself IMO. 


     

    The previous 15" rMBP had the i7 and GT 60M w/1GB so again I wonder why only the 1 hour moving to Hasswell? The new base 15" rMBP has Irus Pro, not the GT 750M. 

     

    I was expecting a wow like with the MBA

     

    Also, the processors are a bit lower. 

     

  • Reply 6 of 26

    Removing the graphics card from the base 15" rMBP was a stupid idea. What will happen to performance now?? 

     

    I was about to buy it, but now I'll have to think twice before doing so.. 

  • Reply 7 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by diesel View Post

     

    Removing the graphics card from the base 15" rMBP was a stupid idea. What will happen to performance now?? 

     

    I was about to buy it, but now I'll have to think twice before doing so.. 


     

    the base rMBP, correct, but the step up has the GT 750. 

  • Reply 8 of 26
    cash907cash907 Posts: 893member

    Who cares about the number crunching scores? Where are the GPU benchmarks?

    As far as thinness, where are the side by shots of the old next to the new?

  • Reply 9 of 26
    dugbugdugbug Posts: 283member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by diesel View Post

     

    Removing the graphics card from the base 15" rMBP was a stupid idea. What will happen to performance now?? 

     

    I was about to buy it, but now I'll have to think twice before doing so.. 




    iris pro 5200 is no slouch for integrated gfx.  It runs faster or nearly the same as the 650M from the early 2013 model in most benchmarks I've seen.  (though its not anything like the 750M in the new upper end).

     

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/6993/intel-iris-pro-5200-graphics-review-core-i74950hq-tested/16

  • Reply 10 of 26

    The main problem with my last-year rMBP is that too many applications (such as the iPhone/iPad simulator) switch to the discrete graphics card. In that mode the battery only lasts for about four hours. 

     

    Since the Iris Pro is much more powerful, it will be nice if most applications didn't resort to the GT 750M. That would significantly increase  battery life under higher (and actually more meaningful) loads.

     

    I'm waiting for some real-world tests ... :)

  • Reply 11 of 26
    winterwinter Posts: 1,238member
    I wonder if Mavericks allows you to manually switch between the Iris Pro or 750M?
  • Reply 12 of 26
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,216member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by diesel View Post

     

    Removing the graphics card from the base 15" rMBP was a stupid idea. What will happen to performance now?? 

     

    I was about to buy it, but now I'll have to think twice before doing so.. 


     

    Don't just assume that just because its integrated graphics, that its crap. I'm willing to bet the performance will be more than fine with the Iris Pro Graphics. 

  • Reply 13 of 26
    On Apple's website, they list the MacMini tech specs as having: 2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz) with 3MB L3 cache, or 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 (Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz) with 6MB L3 cache.

    All other Macs (aside from the MacPro) have either dual-core or quad-core Intel Core i5 or i7 in various GHz.

    Does this mean that ALL of the Macs in their line-up now have Haswell inside, including the MacMini? If not, then how can you differentiate whether or not a certain product line has the Haswell?

    Just curious because I'm needing to get a new MacMini soon. Thanx!
  • Reply 14 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macxpress View Post

     

    Don't just assume that just because its integrated graphics, that its crap. I'm willing to bet the performance will be more than fine with the Iris Pro Graphics. 


    It's faster for OpenCL tasks. For games it's still around 20-40% slower than even the 650M of last years rMBP. The 750M should be around 10-15% faster than the 650M from most estimates I've seen.

     

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Trubador View Post



    Does this mean that ALL of the Macs in their line-up now have Haswell inside, including the MacMini?

    No, it does not mean that since it clearly states HD4000 graphics for the Mini. HD4000 is Ivy Bridge.

     

    Quote:

    If not, then how can you differentiate whether or not a certain product line has the Haswell?

    Look at the graphics model.

  • Reply 15 of 26
    After waiting 7 months, I placed my order for a 2.6 GHz 15" rMBP with a 1TB Drive %u2026. can't wait to get my hands on it.
  • Reply 16 of 26

    Thanks, MJ! 

  • Reply 17 of 26
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MikeJones View Post

     

    It's faster for OpenCL tasks. For games it's still around 20-40% slower than even the 650M of last years rMBP. The 750M should be around 10-15% faster than the 650M from most estimates I've seen.


     

    Yah, I'd have preferred a mid range BTO option to the 750M.  At the current price it's above my company's max for a new notebook purchase and I'd have get additional approval.  I'd trade the i7 for an i5 to get the 750M for less than $2500.  Kinda sucks given that $2500 is a reasonable budget for a laptop.  But I need 16GB, a GPU and applecare.

     

    Even with the corporate discount the lowest end MBP with a GPU is now well over $2600.

  • Reply 18 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by capasicum View Post

     

    The main problem with my last-year rMBP is that too many applications (such as the iPhone/iPad simulator) switch to the discrete graphics card. In that mode the battery only lasts for about four hours. 

     

    Since the Iris Pro is much more powerful, it will be nice if most applications didn't resort to the GT 750M. That would significantly increase  battery life under higher (and actually more meaningful) loads.

     

    I'm waiting for some real-world tests ... :)


    What's needed is a change in the Energy Saver panel to allow users to specify: Automatic switching, Only use Discrete, Only use Integrated. It should never have been implemented as a check box.

     

    I was surprised that Apple went with the Haswell chips they did. I was expecting to see Apple use the direct replacements for the Ivy Bridge chips they previously used. Prices for the chips are virtually identical too.

     

    Below are the actual chips used in the early 2013 Ivy Bridge 15" rMBP, the Haswell replacement for that chip (same clock speed, same price) and the lower clocked and more expensive chips actually used in the late 2013 machines.

     

    Ivy: 3630QM (2.4GHz with HD 4000 graphics)

    Has: 4700MQ (2.4GHz with HD 4600 graphics)

    2013: 4750HQ (2.0GHz with Iris Pro 5200 graphics)

     

    Ivy: 3740QM (2.7GHz with HD 4000 graphics)

    Has: 4800MQ (2.7GHz with HD 4600 graphics)

    2013: 4850HQ (2.3GHz with Iris Pro 5200 graphics)

     

    Build to order CPU:

    Ivy: 3840QM (2.8GHz with HD 4000)

    Has: 4900MQ (2.8GHz with HD 4600)

    2013: 4960HQ (2.6GHz with Iris Pro)

     

    At first glance it's shocking that Apple deliberately chose to pay more for slower CPUs to go in machines already equipped with high performance graphics.

     

    I have a theory that explains their decision. During the unveiling it was mentioned several times that Apple is optimizing OS X to use OpenCL on integrated GPUs. If they had gone with the replacement models the CPU component would have been marginally faster, but the GPU would have been significantly slower. If Apple is going to make extensive use of OpenCL they will want the chip that provides the best combined CPU/GPU processing power.

     

    Handing a computing task to a Haswell chip and telling it to get the job done by any means necessary could be incredibly efficient if the GPU takes most of the parallel tasks while the CPU keeps the sequential ones. It could provide faster computation and lower energy use at the same time. Bringing another GPU into the mix could be even more efficient by handing the big number crunching job to the nVidia GPU while letting the energy efficient Iris Pro handle drawing the results on the screen.

  • Reply 19 of 26

    I'm fed up with Apple trying to remove dedicated graphics chip and not improving graphics compute performance across all Macs. A pro notebook costing $2000 has performance similar to an nVidia 650M (which is again just a mid-range notebook GPU)? That is honestly not good considering it has gargantuan screen resolution. I actually own a 2012 15" rMBP and I keep wishing it had more graphics performance and video memory for video, photo editing and 3D animations. Not impressed with the new 15" rMBP (though the price drop is always a welcome). Guess I'll wait for another year.

  • Reply 20 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by crysisftw View Post

     

    I'm fed up with Apple trying to remove dedicated graphics chip and not improving graphics compute performance across all Macs. A pro notebook costing $2000 has performance similar to an nVidia 650M (which is again just a mid-range notebook GPU)? That is honestly not good considering it has gargantuan screen resolution. I actually own a 2012 15" rMBP and I keep wishing it had more graphics performance and video memory for video, photo editing and 3D animations. Not impressed with the new 15" rMBP (though the price drop is always a welcome). Guess I'll wait for another year.


    The high-end rMBP is equipped with GT 750M and 2GB of GDDR5. The 760M and 780M are way too power-hungry to put in a laptop.

     

    Other than that, I remember a demo by the Adobe Premiere team made on the 15" rMBP last year. They've real-time video editing of a project containing no less than seven 5K streams, each one having a large set of effects applied (different for each stream).

     

    I can't really imagine what your expectations for a laptop are, but it is quite possible current high-end rMBP to be the last one having a discrete graphics card.

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