Intel Alder Lake Core i9 processor is faster than the M1 Max, but playing dirty


A couple of weeks ago, Intel assured that its new processor Alder Lake Core i9 it was faster than Apple’s M1 Max. Now, with the first already on the market mounted on an MSI laptop, the corresponding comparisons have been made outside the laboratories of the North American chip manufacturer.

And the truth is that technically yes, the new Intel processor is faster, but if you look at the data, you see that in reality that “victory” is by the minimum, and making a couple of “trapdoors” to be able to do said affirmation.

On paper, if we only stick to the data that the application throws Geekbench, the benchmark in processor performance tests, Intel can claim that its Alder Lake Core i9 chip is faster than Apple’s M1 Max.

But the truth is that if you look at how the test is carried out, and under what conditions, the truth is that Intel cannot get much out of such a forceful statement.

These Geekbench tests have been carried out on a laptop specially designed for gaming, the MSI GE76 Raider. And the results of the raw processing power of the i9, are very good, but it only beats the M1 Max by 5%. Very fair, really.

In Geekbench 5’s multi-core CPU test, the Alder Lake Core i9 had a 5 percent lead over Apple’s processor. In the single core test, Alder Lake’s improvement was 3.5 percent. that’s basically a tie. An imperceptible difference for the user, without a doubt.

The i9 consumes three times more than the M1 Max

But Intel has not played fair to become the winner. During the Cinebench R23 multi-core test, the Alder Lake notebook was constantly consuming over 100 watts, with peaks between 130 and 140 watts. If we compare it with the consumption of the M1 Max, which was 39.7 watts, let’s say that to be a laptop processor is not an advantage.

So if we unplug the MSI from the electrical current, and use it with the battery, that superpower of the i9 to get to “overcome” the M1 Max lasts a sigh, while with the Apple processor you have autonomy of several hours without problem .

And the second “trap” is about the graphics performance of said MSI laptop. If you pair that Core i9 gaming laptop with its GPU Nvidia RTX3080Ti, so sure, the differences are dramatic if you compare it to the internal graph of the M1 Max.

The MSI achieves an OpenCL score of 143,594 against the 59,774 of the M1 Max. But that’s not a real comparison. Using only the integrated GPU of the Intel processor, things look very different. There Intel obtained only 21,097 points.

In short, the MSI GE76 Raider laptop is capable of squeezing the i9 processor to exceed the M1 Max by 5% speed, but being plugged in, because it reaches that speed consuming three times more than the Apple processor.

And in graphics performance, it wins the MSI as long as you use the dedicated graphics for Nvidia RTX3080 Ti gaming. If you pull the integrated one from Intel, you lose the comparison with the integrated one from the M1 Max. That said, the i9 wins, but by cheating.

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