Review: MacBook Core 2 Duo get a discrete performance boost

The update of the MacBook has focused on the change of processor to the new Core 2 Duo. Processor speeds, however, remain the same with a 1.83 GHz setting and two 2 GHz settings available in white or black housings. These last two models also incorporate other changes, the most notable being the increase in cache memory from 2 MB to 4 MB, as well as higher capacity hard drives, SuperDrive drives with faster DVD recording and more memory installed as standard.

What is the end result of these changes? The 2 GHz white setting has proven to be the fastest Core 2 Duo model with a Speedmark 4.5 rating of 178; which is about a 7 percent improvement over all other MacBook systems. Those responsible for this performance include a 22 percent improvement in MP3 encoding with iTunes, a 21 percent increase in Photoshop tests, and a 19 percent improvement in video encodings using Compressor.

If you are an iBook or PowerBook user thinking of upgrading for any reason, then you should note that the new 2GHz white MacBook Pro was 35 percent faster in our Speedmark tests compared to the PowerBook G4 1.67 GHz, and 35 percent faster than the 1.42 GHz iBook G4. Even the MacBook Core 2 Duo is faster compared to such systems on each of the tests performed, including the tests of Photoshop made under Rosetta.