Geekbench: Psystar v. Mac mini (and all three MacBooks)

Geekbench: Psystar v. Mac mini (and all three MacBooks)

Summary: Yesterday I posted Xbench benchmarks of the Psystar Open Computer against the latest shipping Mac mini and all three Apple notebook computers and the Open Computer beat the Mac mini 147 to 99.Some suggested Geekbench 2 benchmarks should also be run.

TOPICS: Apple, Hardware

Yesterday I posted Xbench benchmarks of the Psystar Open Computer against the latest shipping Mac mini and all three Apple notebook computers and the Open Computer beat the Mac mini 147 to 99.

Some suggested Geekbench 2 benchmarks should also be run. If you’re not familiar with Geekbench 2, scores are calibrated against a baseline score of 1000, the score of a Power Mac G5 running at 1.6GHz. One thing to keep in mind is that Geekbench 2 only measures processor and memory performance, which is why, for example, MacBook and MacBook Pro scores are so similar, despite both having radically different GPUs.

Configurations are as follows:

  • Psystar Open Computer, 2.2GHz Core 2 Duo, 2GB RAM, 10.5.2
  • Mac mini, 2GHz Core 2 Duo, 2GB RAM, 10.5.2

Geekbench Psystar 3244

Geekbench Mac mini 2936

Higher scores are better.

Again, the Psystar beat the Mac mini 3244 to 2936. You can can compare these results to all shipping Macs, and most shipping PCs on the Primate Lab blog.

Update: Geekbench 2 results from all three shipping MacBooks are after the jump...

Configurations are as follows:

  • MacBook Air 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo, 2GB RAM, 10.5.2
  • MacBook, 2.16GHz C2D, 2GB RAM, 10.5.2
  • MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Penryn) C2D, 4GB RAM, 10.5.2

Geekbench MacBook Air 2200

Geekbench MacBook 3070

Geekbench MacBook Pro 3327

Click over to Primate Labs and download a free copy of Geekbench 2, then run on your Mac to see how it compares to other Macs. Don't forget to upload your results, a larger sample size gives everyone better data to look at.

Note: for the above tests I used the 64-bit version of Geekbench 2 (build 2.0.16) which are only available in the registered version (US$20).

Topics: Apple, Hardware

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  • Pystar vs Mac Mini Benchmarks

    Anyone can make a fast computer in the case size of a Transit Bus!!
    What should have been done is test machines with similar
    configurations as much as possible or find some way to weight the
    results to compensate for spec differences. That should be a Tech
    Bench feature to enter certain things like, processor speed, drive
    speed, bus speed, GPU type, etc, then make weighted adjustments
    so you are comparing Apples to Apples. I mean large Red Delicious
    from Washington vs smaller Red Delicious from Chile.
    The Major differences I see which could cause score disparity is
    Processor Speed, Drive Speed, and the Major difference in GPU, each
    one of those items could cut 100+ points off the Mac Mini score.
    • Let's summarize

      [i]Anyone can make a fast computer in the case size of a Transit Bus!![/i]

      So what you are suggesting is that performance benchmarks should be somehow weighted by a factor based on the style of the machine. In other words, the Mini isn't [b]really[/b] half as fast as the Psystar (for twice the price) because the Mini is more stylish. Maybe the same idea could be applied to drag racing? In other words, if my Audi A4 loses to your Mustang, I should get the win anyway because my car is nicer? Uh huh.

      [i]That should be a Tech Bench feature to enter certain things like, processor speed, drive speed, bus speed, GPU type, etc, then make weighted adjustments so you are comparing Apples to Apples.[/i]

      This suggestion is, I'm sorry to say, even more ridiculous! What you are asking for here is that all benchmarks are multiplied by some factor so that no matter what hardware you have, you will score the same as any other machine? In other words, my 1.6 GHz PC isn't [b]really[/b] slower than your 3.2 GHz PC because, after all, I have a slower processor!
      • NZ - Mac users don't get it -

        if they did they would using something else :-)

        and having a month's worth of beer/wine/pizza with the savings
        Paul Fletcher
        • Apparently PC users are poor judges of space

          maybe even distance. It's a historical fact that because
          laptops have far greater heat issues and concerns that they
          are often less powerful and far more expensive than their
          desktop counterparts. Same size issues are to be taken
          into effect for the space saving Mini...DUH! The Mini
          serves a purpose for a lot of people who don't want or
          need a large box taking up valuable space in their
          apartment, dorm or even house. Space has value and for
          some if not many smaller is better. How difficult is this
          concept for some?

          Pagan jim
          James Quinn
          • Clarification please...

            So if I understand your point correctly, a better test would be for the tester to remove the shells from the Macs (non-laptops, of course) and then run the tests so that they can have more airflow and dissipate heat better?

            If this were done, and if the Mac still lost to the clone, would you THEN accept the results? I just want to make sure I understand your rationale.

            I do agree that heat is a greater issue for laptops and small form factors in general, but some of benchmark tests can be run in very short time periods.

            Assuming that the naked Macs were now faster, the argument might be that they had an unfair advantage because their chassis were removed. Hence, I would suggest opening up the clone as much as possible as well.

            Then everyone might be able to accept the results whatever they end up being.
          • Apples and Oranges?

            I think what Pagan is saying is that if you look at Psystar. It's a tower. It isn't optimised to run as a laptop or the Mini would be.

            Every PC user knows that a laptop will never be as good as a desktop or Tower because manufactorures remove components shorten instruction set, basically anything they can to save space and reduce heat.

            So now we have Psystar more or less a mac tower but with lower end CPU's. You can't fairly say you are going to compare a 3.0 GHz Power Mac versus a 2.0 GHz Psystar. So, the author looked for Mac's in the low end CPU range and chose the laptops and the mini.

            And as one would expect if comparing an HP laptop versus an HP desktop or any other PC makers ware, the desktop smoked the laptop.

            In this case the Psystar a tower smoked what amounts to four laptops.

            Pagan merely, pointed out that even though these smaller computers are slower there is still a valid reason for buying them.
          • Nope.....

            It's well known that to run in a small case vs a large open one
            even the same processor must run cooler and that often
            means slower. How could you not know this!?!

            Pagan jim
            James Quinn
          • No, they should be comparing a Mac mini to a Shuttle PC. [nt]

          • Right, so...

            You can choose the space, or you can choose better performance. It's not that difficult...we get it already.

            Of course for many other people, saving some much needed cash on their computer has more 'value' than having space-saving eye candy. Not everyone can afford the high price Mac toys. How difficult is this concept for some?
          • high priced toys?

            WHAT??? MACS may be that or status quo for some
            however there are others in the work force (many in
            multimedia) such as companies that produce movies,
            music, and commercials just to start. When it comes to
            using graphic programs NO Vista can keep up with what I
            do unless I want to deal with constantly having my system
            freeze up. On a daily basis I use about half of the
            programs in Premium Adobe CS3 'at the same time'. Not to
            mention other programs like Aperture 2, Quark, Final Cut
            Studio and others that require MORE memory than the
            average PC will support. NO I don't do this on my laptop
            which is a NEW MacBook Pro with 4GB of memory because
            things get logged jam, stop working, and quit. Instead I
            use a NEW MAC PRO Tower with 16GBs of memory and 3
            graphic cards. TOYS you say? Next time you are watching
            your favorite show, movie, or cartoon realize MACs are the
            blue collar machine used to create the finished product.
            next time your reading your favorite magazine or viewing
            ANYTHING in print ANYWHERE realize these ads are created
            on Macs.
          • I question your reading skills...

            Where in the world did you get the idea that I was talking about the professional workforce? The blog was talking about benchmarking computers that are (most likely) bought mainly by consumers for personal home computing. The responses from the Mac community argued space over performance (and getting girls). I argued price over eye-candy...and you argued professional graphics work? Dude, you really need to comprehend what you're reading before you fire off knee-jerk responses.

            I'm not even sure I get your point. The Macs I worked on for 5 years in advertising were the buggiest POC computers I have ever seen (OSX Tiger? I never really paid that much attention to which version of OSX they were...). Programs crashed on almost a daily basis, major font issues between other Macs in the building, and at least three times during those 5 years I witnessed those computers freeze up entirely. But then again, I'll agree that experiences differ for different folks.

            I personally can't afford to keep up on Macs for my home computers and I've not had a problem with XP yet that has made me want to quit using it. I am happy with my tower which fits quite nicely in the space I have. I just find it ludicrous that there are Mac fanatics defending their product by insinuating that you can't get a date unless you have a space saving, catchy-looking Mac computer.
          • That concept will be...

            very difficult and expensive once Apple bricks those illegal
            clones with their next OS update. This Piss-Star computer
            probably doesn't worry Apple too much right now. Once
            these guys start making serious money, it will become worth
            while to Apple to sue them out of existence. Then all those
            suckers that thought they could save a little money up front
            will be left holding a big useless doorstop, having pissed
            their money away. Well, perhaps not quite useless, maybe
            they can install VISTA.
          • Upgrade?

            Who said anything about upgrading? Skipping the upgrade is a small price to pay to save big while still being able to upgrade hardware to your heart's content. If Apple can claim that their machines aren't broken, then who really needs to 'fix' it with an upgrade?
          • SPACE is often a concern for a variety of reasons..

            I disagree on the whole toy argument but that's a different

            The whole point of my post was to point out that you can't
            fairly compare a system designed to be compact with one
            that does not have the same heat/speed constraints...

            Pagan jim
            James Quinn
      • Silly boy.....

        What he was suggesting is the metrics are false. A laptop
        is usually more expensive and slower than a desktop
        because of SIZE not style. If you need a laptop however it
        is a value and you buy one. A desktop is cheaper because
        you don't have the heat issues and space issues that a
        laptop has. Same thing with a Mini. Many people both
        home users, college students in dorms and businesses
        have space issues. Space is expensive for everyone after
        all even one's apartment or home has money attached to
        the space it occupies. So since the Mini is much like a
        laptop in it's reduced space configuration and that space
        can be a factor for some if not many than to do a speed
        test against a desktop is unfair. Pystar should be tested
        with it's own Mini and not a simple desktop then the
        comparison is fair otherwise it's a false none apples to
        apples test. Useless really.....

        But you are smart enough to know that already...right?

        Pagan jim
        James Quinn
        • Actually, what the benchmark test prove

          is that if you want an economical computer then you steer away from Macs since Apple's low end computers can't compete with an even cheaper clone. If you like the style and don't care about how much money you have to spend then a Mac might suit you. The mini was introduced to woo the PC market, but these tests show that you're better off with a PC if you need a low end economical computer.
          • Opinions vary......

            There are two ways of looking at this. If you want an
            economical space saving computer device then obviously
            the Mini is for you. If you don't have a concern about
            space and don't care about upgrades and patches to your
            OS then taking a chance with a startup company maybe
            worth the gamble. Still will it be around in a year or so?
            What about your warranty? Any service history? Since
            Apple makes OSX to run with it's hardware what if Apple
            makes some "turn on a dime" changes to OSX? What about
            these guys can they respond?

            There are always going to be tire kickers. Those who think
            just because they paid 299.00 for Dell's latest ahem
            computer they got a good deal. Heck there are those who
            take Dell's 299.00 price and walk into a local shop and see
            if they can save another 10 or 5 bucks even. Still I can't
            blame Apple any for not wanting to do business with these
            sorts. They are a chunk of the market but I think to date
            Apple has proven over the years that it's a chunk not

            Pagan jim
            James Quinn
          • EXACTLY, Alanjane! Apple doesnt OFFER a lowball desktop...

            and Psystar is offering a "clone" in the least expensive form it could find, attempting to attract those customers who have been wanting the "Mac experience" without PAYING THROUGH THE NOSE for it!

            I've been OFF the Mac platform for 3.5 years now because when it came time to upgrade the last time, and liking to be a "power user," I just could no longer justify the MANY EXTRA DOLLARS I had to pay for essentially equivalent hardware just to use the Mac OS. Apple "addressed this" with the Mac Mini," BUT the Mac Mini DOESN'T allow for any kinds of expansion and so forth, because it's NOT a tower, with the standard expansion slots and so forth... Apple offers NO low-end option in tower configurations, and NOW it's biting them in THE BEHIND!

            I've been waiting to see if Psystar was "for real." It's possible I may buy one if they stand the test of time for very long because it's starting to look like they're offering, for less money MORE than I can get from Apple, PERIOD.

            Apple's days of being the only show in town may be coming to an end, FINALLY... Microsoft has already seen some of this with the advent of competing OSes, and it's about time Apple had a come-uppance, since I believe they've just gotten a bit too arrogant.

            When they used a different processor and core components, at least they could make the argument that they DID employ different hardware, but they can't even make that argument any more (although their Towers DO have Xeon processors in them). Either Psystar will force them to rethink their marketing strategy and come up with some new, low-end products, or they WILL lose some market share.
            Jeff Hayes
          • That is a laugh...

            Pystar is offering a clone that can compete against what? Non expandable forms?

            Pystar?s computer top end can?t compare to Apple?s top end computer, don?t foo yourself. Pystar?s low end computer (Bare Bones) can?t compare to Apple?s either... at least for cost. Pystar?s computer actually is more expensive.

            Pystar?s computer with upgrades to make it comparable to the Mac Mini... at least in functionality, and not in price.

            Lets compare the differences:

            Mac Mini (Mid 2007):$599.00

            Slower Bus Speed. 766Mhz
            Has One FireWire 800
            Has 4 USB slots.
            Comes with a Wireless 802.11g Card built in.
            Comes with a Bluetooth Card Built in.
            Comes with iLife
            Comes with a Gigabit Ethernet Capabilities.
            Comes with a DVI & VGA output
            Comes With S-video & composite video output.

            Open Computer (Early 2008): $399 Standard, Upgraded: $906
            Is Expandable
            Has a faster processor
            has a faster Bus (800Mhz)
            Has a bigger and faster video card
            You have to buy 10.5 to have it installed for free: $150.00
            You have to buy Bluetooth and Wireless abilities: $144
            You have to buy Firewire abilities too: $50
            Does not have iLife pre installed: $80
            Does not have S-video & composite video output: $83

            Also there is nothing saying that you can?t upgrade the MacMini processor as well, Apple doesn?t support it, but we are talking about a hacked PC against a Mac...and you had the balls to upgrade your MacMini, you probably could do it without very little issue if you followed the guide here.


            That being said, I am looking right now, the Open Computer is not a system I would buy, you complained about being nickled and dimed? the Pystar computer does that to you if you want the same functionality as a Mac Mini...

            I would rather spend a little extra money outright, get a Mac Mini, then buy a hackintosh that has no actually authorization by Apple to sell their OS, or to make it work on their computer... and has no guarantee that when 10.5.3 comes out and people try to install it on a hackintosh that it will work.

            Open Computers won?t make Apple rethink their way of working, and I have given you a reason above. Please before you open your mouth think... because right now you are telling me you would rather spend $399 for a PC that can run Apple?s OS X, and have nothing of Apple?s ability...

            And for your information, I typing this on a Dual 1.25 G4, which came out 08/13/2002


            I am running 10.5.2 on it, I am running the latest version of office, and I am running the latest version the Adobe Suite on it with no slowdown or issues.

            I can play Doom 3 on it, and I can play Quake 4 on it as well, with no slowdown, or issues.

            I have only upgraded the video card, I have 2GB of ram in it (it came with it), and I have two 500GB Hard drives in it.

            I also upgraded it so everything is wireless as well.

            When I bought it, it cost me $1800... 300 a year, since I?ve had it. The video card cost me $120, the Bluetooth cost me $50, the Hard drives cost me $120 a pop... which comes out to be: 368.33 /yr spent.

            That is not nickel and diming you to death, that is a damned good investment. I also have it connected to two 20? Mac monitors.

            So tell me...oh Guru of Hypocrisy, where exactly am I being nickle and dimed?

            Also how can you compare the Pystar hackintosh and the Mac Mini together when a newer date release, using a desktop form and the lack of options that came with the Pystar machine when you and I both know that Open Computers are the ones that are truly nickle and diming you to death.
            Matt Ridge
          • You jumped ship after making the investment?

            You jumped ship after making the investment? Macs have a
            very high resale value. Upgrading isn't as expensive or as
            painful as you make it sound after buying your first machine.