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BARE FEATS LAB - real world Mac speed tests

GAME SHOOTOUT:
fastest 2013 Retina MacBook Pro
vs fastest 2012 Retina MacBook Pro
and fastest 2013 iMac

Posted Saturday, November 2nd, 2013 by rob-ART morgan, mad scientist
November 7th, 2013 -- added results for Iris Pro forced to do the GPU work

How fast is the 2013 Retina MacBook Pro compared to the 'best' early 2012 Retina MacBook Pro? And how do both compare to the 'best' 2013 iMac? We have a sampling of games plus Heaven and Valley results.

GRAPH LEGEND
2013 iMac = 2013 iMac (27") with 3.5GHz Core-i7, 32GB of 1600MHz DDR3, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M GPU (4G), and 512GB PCIe flash storage
2013 rMBP 750M = 2013 Retina MacBook Pro (15") with 2.6GHz Quad-Core i7, 16GB of 1600MHz DDR3, NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M GPU (2G)*, and 512GB PCIe flash storage.
2013 rMBP IrisPro = 2013 Retina MacBook Pro (15") 2.6GHz Quad-Core i7, 16GB of 1600MHz DDR3, Iris Pro Integerated GPU (1G)*, and 512GB PCIe flash storage.
2012 rMBP = 'early 2012' Retina MacBook Pro (15") with 2.7GHz Quad-Core i7, 16GB of 1600MHz DDR3, NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M GPU (1G), and 512GB 6Gbps SATA flash storage

(
* gfxCardStatus was used to disable Dynamic Switching and force either the Intel Iris Pro or the GeForce GT 750 to run each app.) All three were running OS X 10.9 Mavericks

Diablo III -- Re-killing the Undead on the way to the village. Best Settings with Anti-Aliasing. (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

Left 4 Dead 2 (Steam) -- TimeDemo of a recorded game session. Best Settings and Anti-Aliasing. (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

Civilization V (Steam) -- The built-in "-LeaderBenchmark" was used at 1920x1200 since it is GPU intensive. (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

X-Plane 10 -- TimeDemo of the flight of F4F Phantom Jet in lightning storm. Best Settings. (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

Heaven OpenGL Benchmark -- Extreme Preset (1600x900). (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

Valley OpenGL Benchmark -- Extreme Preset (1600x900). (LARGER number means FASTER in FRAMES per SECOND)

INSIGHTS
Though the 2013 rMBP with GeForce GT 750M is only slightly faster than the 2012 rMBP with GeForce GT 650M, both models produce acceptable framerates for gaming at high quality settings and up to 1920x1200 resolution.

Notice we used gfxCardStatus to force the Iris Pro integrated GPU to run the same set of games. For best performance, you want to run games with the GeForce GT 750M enabled in the 2013 model. (You can insure that by disabling "Automatic Graphics Switching" in the System Preferences > Energy Saver tile.) By running the apps above in both GPU modes, we are able to inform those of you wondering if you should buy the model with Iris Pro only or the one with the GeForce GT 750M in addition to the Iris Pro.

The iMac is obviously superior to both laptops for gaming. Even at the native 2560x1440 of the 27" screen it can smoke them. Of course, hard core gamers will likely demand a Mac Pro with an advanced GPU to go even faster.

For Pro App test results, see our page featuring Final Cut Pro X, DaVinci Resolve, OctaneRender, etc.

Comments or Questions? Email me,

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WHERE TO BUY APPLE PRODUCTS
USA readers can help us earn a commission by using this Apple Store USA link or by clicking on any Apple display ad on this page. Students and Educators can save up to $200 on a new Mac by clicking HERE.

For UK readers, visit Apple Store UK.

WHERE TO BUY FACTORY REFURBISHED MACS
Apple Store USA has refurbished Macs with 12 month warranty that can be extended to 36 months with AppleCare. Pay attention to the GPU it comes with. Check with PowerMax, too, for used and refurbished Macs. They will even give credit for your trade-in.

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copyright 2013 Rob Art Morgan
"BARE facts on Macintosh speed FEATS"
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