updated 06:55 pm EST, Wed March 5, 2008
New MacBooks slower?
Primate Labs has taken a close look at the performance of Apple's lastest MacBook, and claims that the newest base model is slower than the previous generation. A performance comparison via Geekbench -- an application designed to test the speed of computers in various areas -- revealed higher scores for MacBooks released in early 2008 than the latest models offered by Apple. In overall performance the early 2008 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo MacBook scored 3,135 against a baseline score of 1,000, which signifies the score a 1.6GHz Power Mac G5 would receive. Conversely, Apple's late 2008 2.2GHz MacBook scored 2,890 -- significantly less than the slightly older model.
Interestingly, the early 2007 MacBook outperformed the current-generation system in almost every category. Only stream performance showed a slight uptick in performance for the latest MacBook over the 2007 model. Primate Labs concludes that the late 2008 high-end MacBooks outperform the high-end early 2007 systems, pointing to the newer model's increased processor frequency.
"Of course, the high-end MacBook (Early 2008) is faster than the high-end MacBook (Late 2007); it seems the increase in processor frequency is enough to overcome the smaller L2 cache in this case."
Primate Labs chalks up the newest base model's lower performance to Apple's inclusion of Intel's Penryn processor, which offers less L2 cache than the chips that shipped in early 2007 MacBooks.