Geek Patrol benchmarks the MacBook against the MacBook Pro, and concludes: “The difference between the MacBook and the MacBook Pro varies between 75% and 115%; sometimes the MacBook is faster, sometimes the MacBook Pro is faster. For CPU-intensive tasks, I doubt most will notice the difference between the MacBook and the MacBook Pro. Unfortunately, Geekbench doesn’t measure GPU performance, which is the biggest difference between the MacBook and the MacBook Pro. For GPU-intensive tasks, most users will probably prefer the dedicated GPU in the MacBook Pro over the integrated GPU in the MacBook.”
Benchmark: MacBook, MacBook Pro
About The Author
Follow me on Twitter @thomholwerda
2006-05-17 4:17 pmtaos
Funny, I actually share with your opinion of “a glorified PDA”, but that’s why I think MacBook went _backwards_:
it increases screen size to 13″, and weight to 5+ lbs!
Since we already have MacBook Pro, I was hoping for a 10″ to 12″, weighted about 4lbs or less, easy-to-carry PDA-like laptop from Apple.
There’re more than enough business laptop vendors in the market, MacBook Pro already covers that market for Apple, a super-portable fun laptop is what I expect from Apple, just like the ipods.
2006-05-17 6:06 pmddew
I totally agree with you.
I have a 12″ PowerBook G4. I bought it because of its small size, and because of the durability and quality of its case and keyboard. I bought it because I can easily fit it in my book bag and because I can fit it on any available space such as a small coffee shop table.
I had been looking forward to an Intel upgrade of this exact model ( size, case construction, keyboard ). I was very disappointed to learn yesterday that Apple considers its MacBook family to now be complete, even though there is no apparent replacement for my 12″ PowerBook.
Despite the fact that I write Java code and would definitely benefit from the performance improvements provided by the new MacBooks, I’d still rather have my 12″ PowerBook over any of the new MacBooks.
Along with the introduction of the glare-unfriendly “glossy” screens, the abandonment of the 12″ form factor suggests to me that Apple was not doing a very good job of thinking about usability for folks like me.
I really wish that the MacBook or even the iPod folks would take a look at how to fit an Intel upgrade of the 12″ PowerBook into the MacBook lineup. Until they or somebody else figures out a solution to that problem, I’ll just keep on using my PowerBook.
2006-05-18 1:25 amma_d
You’re kidding right? The macbook may have thermal paste issues but this isn’t indicative of notebooks being performance incapable…
Any longer, notebooks are viable for anything. Yea, you can even play games on them now; better than you could on a desktop 2-3 years ago. Which, for a gamer doesn’t sound that great (although apparently the 25lbs and extra trip to haul it have convinced many) but way back when you just couldn’t play games on notebooks; they had no gfx acceleration.
And as for everything else. You can do most anything, although video editing isn’t much fun, on a GHz CPU with a lot of RAM. Sure, photoshop is a lot more enjoyable on twice the machine; but modern notebooks are far more than twice a typical GHz in performance.
In contrast a typical PDA has to run software that’s not just broke down for high memory constraints (64MB, and other apps have to run too), extreme resolution constraints, and also quite a bit of processing constraints. Ever wonder why the graphics on Winmo look so simple? Because PDA’s are slow!
Thanks for the comparison, but it is a bit unfair, isn’t it? It would be nice to see mini via macbook benchmarks though.
ps: Anyway, they look just lovely, I wonder how does the keyboard feel like. Anyone?
It’s not the same OSX Build. It could impact a lot especially if the newer build of the MacBook adds some optimization…
I am not talking also about the 1.5 GIG of RAM difference!
Correct me if i’m wrong but The figures presented are quite misleading.
Benchmark MacBook MacBook Pro
single-threaded scalar 87 83(95%)
According to the figures displayed it’s obvious a waste of money to buy a Macbook Pro since the performance gain varies between -6 and +13 ( or should i say:94% – 113%?).
But i think the info could have been better displayed.
Edited 2006-05-17 19:43
I went against my better judgement and gave in to Steve Jobs’s Reality Distortion Field and bought one.
I must say they are wonderful, fast as could be, look excellent. I am still getting used to the keyboard though, the new style I have yet to make a judgement on (if you do not know what I am talking about go look at them at your local apple store). Best of all you can buy a low end model and upgrade it easily. The hard drive is upgradeable (read as not like the ibooks) and the RAM is easy to replace also with cheaper stuff from newegg.
Only problem is the heat. When you are doing some CPU intensive tasks (like compiling, damn -j4 is great) it gets HOT on the bottom side just like the Pros do. But for usual usage its fine.
A lot of people are bitching about the GPU in it. If you are just going to be using it as a standard laptop and not for games or high end graphics its fine, but I would not even try to run a game or some 3d tools on this thing as that would definitely overwork it.
No problems yet on it except for heat. If any pop up in the next few hours I will post them.
What a dreadful way of displaying the results and not the most objectively approached either…
Could have done with some nice graphs!!
Practically it’s a CPU-only benckmark composed by a plenty of different CPU-limited different stages (ok, as CPU tests they are good and complete)… cast above two machines that have the same CPU… weird!
It seem that differences come out only by some minor bottlenecks imposed by the two somewhat different mobos and firmware versions (or by statistical fluctuations).
It would be more useful adding some good-and-old tests like:
– draw/resize/move/overlay xxx windows with 3d effects and bells and whistles to see how and how much the GPU help even in daily interface usage;
– put the max amount of memory on the two machines and do memory intensive tasks, involving memory chunks of different sizes, to see if the mobos allow to expand the memory to the max promised without casting bottlenecks in performances and exploiting as needed the full CPU-memory bandwith
– do some disk speed test, since disks are many times the real bottleneck of the system performance (and disks specs are not as pubblicized as other more popular and more easy to understand specs), with small and large files and with few or many threads;
– do some tests about important interfaces, like network card, wifi, usb, fw etc… in order to list what one machine have and the other not and if some machine mount inferior components with apparently similar declared specs.
…like the new MacBook, especially the black one.
I read a lot of sites and have been convinced that performance + laptop is not a viable option any longer. The new MacBook Pro is hot, waaayyy too hot. The thermal paste is too thick, the CPU and GPU is hobbled to keep the heat down.
If they are pushig the envelope of what a laptop can handle now, what does that spell out for the future in regards to more performance requirements of new software?
I think we need to start thinking of laptops as a glorified PDA, can run a few small apps and such, but mostly act as a device to carry work back to the beast Tower at home.
The MacBookPro tricked out with a 7200 RPM drive and 2GB of RAM, which it will need both for any performance, and AppleCare will set one back $4500!!
I can get a Quad for that price and it will last 2-3 years longer and perform much better that the MacBookPro.