How Will You Test the Core Duo’s Performance?


The Core Duo iMacs have been out long enough that everyone’s gotten into the mix and penned their experiences with the speed and performance of the new machines. That’s all well and good, but until we each have out own opportunity to put a Core Duo through its paces, we won’t really be satisfied, will we?

My question, is what test or tests will you use to judge this new breed of Apple hardware. And please spare us the ‘xbench’ and similar responses – I’m looking for real world tests. Things that will demonstrate a real performance boost in your daily computing.

I’ll start it off:
Browsing webpages with Flash in them. I don’t know what it is, but I could be running nothing but Safari, and have a Flash webpage open, and MenuMeters starts reading as if my CPU were getting the defibrillator. Firefox, Camino, doesn’t seem to matter the browser, Flash has its way with my Powerbook. It was like that on my 1ghz G4, and it’s like that on my 1.5ghz G4.

I’d be a happy man if Flash doesn’t own those Core Duo machines.

Ok – now you.



I’m ripping a DVD right now on my brand-new Macbook (dual core Intel 2.0GHz, 2GB RAM). I’m getting an average of 63fps at the moment, with a time of about 35 minutes to complete the process if the estimation is correct. Both cores are in use with the Handbrake process using about 173% CPU on the Activity Monitor.


So has anyone gotten the new Macbook yet? I know it’s shipped. I’m dying to get one, currently working with a 1GHZ Pbook, it’s just gotten so slow I can’t take it. Especially compared to my Imac G5, if the new Macbook ran as fast as my Imac, i’d be super happy. I use photoshop and flash allot and in response to the first post, the slowness of the flash player on a MAC is painfull. So I’m really dying to hear from someone who has actually gotten the Macbok and has used Photshop and Flash with Rosetta.


@Sam, let us know … actually since i’m not in urge to buy a new machine I’ve settled down waiting some time!

@nick: personally I’ll try to do some real multitask, aka have two sessions of iTunes, one ripping a cd at full quality, and the other burning a cd, and then mixing in some other application that could invoce cpu shared access to the cache and some calculation (aka a photoshop sequence of operation during a SETI-like thing in the background).

everyday stuff, in the end …


IMO, Apple didn’t give us (developers) enough time. Not nearly enough time. Our staff is small and I didn’t need to get sidetracked with rewriting a carpload of code to deal with endian issues. It’s far from “click the Intel radio button in Xcode”.

Anyhoo, here are some drag racing results that developers will care about; building our product (MultiAd Creator) in Xcode:

Distributed build with dual 2.3GHz G5, dual 2GHz G5, and dual 800MHz G4: 23 minutes.

Core Duo iMac: 18 minutes.

Hot damn. Although I wouldn’t call it a great test, because the G5 that was the host is connect via AirPort Extreme, so I’m sure that added a bunch of time overall. There was also something weird with the iMac when I ran this test – it was compiling 6 files at a time. Normally it only does 2 at a time.

Even when you consider the things that made this a less than desirable test, you have to consider that the Core Duo is a low end chip. Macintels will only get faster, especially when real machines (towers) come out.


I’ll measure the MacBook by how much it burns my privates after 2 hours of use on my lap.


To all you lucky people with the new Core Duo’s… Have you tried Handbrake – encoding an MP4 (h264) from a VIDEO_TS folder on the HDD? Im wanting to see the speeds of this encodng as i get pretty high speeds on my old Dual G4 MDD 1.25gHz.

The settings i use is:
MPEG4 h264, 608×363, 912kbps, 25fps, non-deinterlaced, 2-pass
stereo, 128kbps, aac

I usually get about 12fps… and would take about 4-5hours for a 60minute video.

the intel build of Handbrake is available from the homepage (


Jeffrey Lee

Eventually (March 7) when my MacBook Pro arrives I am planning to put Rosetta through a couple of tests… since 99% of my software has yet to be converted :( (Macromedia Studio, Photoshop CS2). I’m confident that these apps will run faster under Rosetta than they do on my 1.07 ghz iBook.

To put the intel chip to the test though I plan on doing a bit of rendering with Maxwell ( Hopefully the Intel version will be out in time.

I think this is my biggest concern with the Intel line. Either Apple did not give developers enough time or they arn’t as interested in getting their software out for the Intel line. Either way, I’m sure it will be faster than the iBook. I hope though with this model the screen is brighter and the power adapter doesn’t fray.

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