26th November 2020

Apple M1 Machines: Benchmarks, Graphics And Beyond

Apple released three new machines powered by its first Silicon chip at their recent 2020 Mac event. While we enjoyed the presentation, it was a little vague — even for Apple fans like ourselves.

Despite this, to say we’re excited to see how they perform would be an understatement. So here, we explore what we know about the performance of the new MacBook Pro, MacBook Air and Mac mini models.


When running the CPU benchmark test on the M1 MacBook Air, many users were blown away by the performance. On single-core performance, the new M1 Air is 3.5x faster than its Intel predecessor. As for the multi-core score, it was 65% faster. When comparing the 13” MacBook Pro M1 to its Intel counterpart, we’re also seeing improvements of 65% and 90% on single and multi-core performance.

One thing worth mentioning is that while the previous Intel Macs would often get incredibly warm, the new M1 Macs remain much cooler. Even the fanless Air remains cool and, whilst it throttles back to maintain a cooler temperature, performance isn’t greatly hindered. The lack of fan noise on both models is also going to be a godsend to those who have complained about noise affecting Zoom meetings.


Apple claims that the new M1 GPU featured in the Silicon computers is up to 6x faster than those on previous Macs, and they aren’t wrong. Although the base model Air comes equipped with a 7-core GPU, rather than an 8-core GPU, the benchmark score destroys the Intel models.

On the Air, we’re seeing up to 2.7x better graphics performance – and on the MacBook Pros, it’s 3x faster. Even in apps not optimised for Silicon, there are still reports of Intel apps running 30% faster in Rosetta. What’s truly amazing is that the graphics performance of the 8-core GPU is almost as good as the graphics performance in the entry-level 16” MacBook Pro.

All of this performance and better thermals mean that users will benefit from much better battery life on these three models. In fact, it’s up to 2x longer than previous-generation Macs, allowing you to work without unnecessary battery drain.


When you attempt to install specific applications on the Silicon-based computers, you may notice that Rosetta is no longer natively installed. With that being said, you won’t have to wait long for things to load on Silicon-based computers as they seamlessly download and open applications with virtually no lag time. Something you will have to wait for, however, is the new Silicon version of your favourite apps.

At this moment in time, you can only install the previous Intel version of certain apps. Adobe has launched a beta version of Photoshop for Apple Silicon, although the full version won’t be coming until next year.

So, should you wait to upgrade to an M1 Mac? If you use a third-party niche app – and face time-critical deadlines – you may want to consider waiting until the applications can run natively. That way, you’ll benefit from the amazing performance that M1 brings. However, it’s hard to overlook the performance improvements over the previous Intel models. Personally, we’d probably find an alternative to that niche app and upgrade.

Leasing your Mac 

Of course, these devices do come at a price – but with performance as good as this, they’re great value. It doesn’t have to impact your cash flow either. Instead of spending a large amount in one go, you can choose to lease the device through Lease Loop.

We don’t just offer a fantastic leasing solution either. Our service is unparalleled and we take pride in supporting our customers in good times and bad, as their business grows. If you have any questions or need advice on which device best suits your needs, we’re here to help. We genuinely care about your business, so get in touch with us today.