Review: 2.6GHz MacBook Pro

If you recall, on the same day Apple increased processor speeds and made other internal architecture changes to its MacBook range, it also announced the availability of a new faster MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo, with a processor speed of 2.6 GHz. The 2.6 GHz processor represents an additional EUR 230 option over the EUR 2,299 and EUR 2,599 models supplied as standard with the 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo.

At Macworld Lab USA we have purchased one of these 15-inch MacBook Pros with the fastest processor; And it should come as no surprise that this notebook was the fastest MacBook Pro to date.

Apart from the processor, the custom MacBook Pro shares the same technical specifications as the high-end notebook models introduced last June. In the case of the 15-inch MacBook Pro we used for testing, this translates to a 160GB hard drive and an Nvidia GeForce 8600M GT graphics card. For the purpose of product comparison, we have also incorporated the new 2.2 GHz model that currently represents the top of the MacBook range in our reviews.

The 2.6 GHz MacBook Pro showed a performance increase of around 5 percent over the 2.4 GHz model. This is slightly less than the 8 percent difference in processor clock speed. although our test suite is responsible for measuring more parameters than those exclusively related to the processor.

For tasks that require high processing power, such as rendering a scene in Cinema 4D, the 2.6 GHz MacBook Pro outperformed the 2.4 GHz model by more than 7 percent. In other tests, the 2.6 GHz system was also the fastest, although in these cases with a margin of around 5 percent.

As for the MacBook, this model remains at a short distance, except in the case of 3-D games where it continues to be penalized by the graphics chip that shares memory with the system. MacBook Pro models use graphics cards with dedicated memory.