Intel’s Alder Lake Core i9s are faster than Apple’s M1 Max

A benchmark confirms that Intel’s CPU imposes itself by a short head in terms of raw performance… provided you sacrifice power consumption.

As more high-end products come out with Intel’s 12th Gen processors, we’re starting to see more clarity about its real-world performance; we learned today via MacWorld that in terms of raw performance, the Core i9-12900HK would hold a candle to Apple’s dazzling M1 Max chip.

The specialized site submitted an MSI GE76 Raider equipped with Intel’s processor and a MacBook Pro 16 to the same Geekbench benchmark, one of the reference platforms for testing raw performance. In single-core, the Intel chip wins with a score of 1838 points, against 1778 for the M1 Pro. Same observation in multicore; the 12,244 points from the M1 Pro bow to the 13,235 points of the i9-12900HK. A difference not gigantic, but significant and sufficient to declare the chip of the blue team winner on this criterion.

A short victory that comes at a high price

On the other hand, this narrow victory, Intel is paying a high price for it in terms of consumption. If the fight was tight at the level of raw power, there is simply no possible comparison on this second criterion. To test this point, PCWorld and AnandTech respectively submitted a GE76 Raider’s equipped with Intel’s processor and a 16-inch MacBook Pro to the same Cinebench R23 benchmark. And in this little game, the Apple chip proved to be quite exceptional with consumption around 40W. In comparison, the i9 bites the dust; he spends most of his time around 100W, with peaks measured at 140W.

© Intel

Those who predicted that the 12th generation i9s would be faster but also much more greedy have therefore aimed squarely in the bullseye. It’s a pretty big difference, which should result in a very concrete difference in terms of autonomy. Indeed, many tests place the maximum autonomy of the MacBook 16” around 20 hours in video playback. According to PCWorld, under these same conditions, the GE76 Raider would only last… 6 ​​hours. A necessary comparison take with tweezers since the CPU is far from being the only determining variable at this level; but this blatantly illustrates the gap between the autonomy of devices equipped with these processors.

The spectrum of the future M2 chip

Is this victory of a short head in terms of performance enough to justify this humiliation in terms of consumption? The question remains open. But either way, it’s a small marketing win for Intel; the blue team can now rely on data from third parties to continue to claim that its chip is faster than Apple’s… for now.

Because if Intel can legitimately be proud of its 12th generation, a new challenge now awaits it at the turn: the announced arrival of the future M2, which MacRumors recalls is expected by the end of the year. And the competition just has to watch out. For its return to this market with a bang in November 2020, Apple struck very hard, with an exceptional M1 chip in many respects. The firm will certainly be keen to do even better, which already suggests a little gem of technology… much to the displeasure of Intel, which is just beginning to pick up the pace.

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