Apple MacBook Air With M3 SoC Seems to Be 20 Percent More Powerful Compared to M2 MacBook Air, Benchmarks Show


Apple unveiled new 13-inch and 15-inch models of the MacBook Air on Monday, equipped with the company’s M3 chipset. The 3nm processor was the biggest upgrade on the refreshed lineup, and Apple claimed that the new laptops were 60 percent faster compared to the MacBook Air models powered by the M1 chip. However, GeekBench scores for the tech giant’s latest offerings are now here. According to the benchmarks, while there still is a significant improvement of 20 percent compared to M2, and between 30 to 40 percent when compared to M1, it is not as high as Apple claims.

According to results shared by GeekBench, the MacBook Air with the M3 chipset scored 3134 in the single-core test and 12048 in the multi-core test. Notably, the processor features an octa-core CPU and a 10-core GPU, and it was clocked at 4.05GHz frequency. If you are not a performance fanatic, the benchmark scores by themselves may not mean much. However, when compared to the older Apple silicon, they highlight just how much more powerful the latest-gen laptops are.

GeekBench comparison shows that the 2024 MacBook Air models scored 18 percent more in the single-core test than the 15-inch MacBook Air with the M2 chipset launched in 2023. In multi-core performance, the difference was 20 percent. The performance difference increased further when compared to the M1 MacBook Air, launched in 2020. In the single-core test, the latest-gen Apple laptops scored 31 percent higher than the M1 counterpart and in the multi-core test, the difference in performance output was 37 percent.

Further, it also noted that the GPU has received significant upgrades with the M3 chipset, but GeekBench does not test GPU performance. Also, the benchmark testing is done for a short duration, which can increase even further in longer periods. Considering both factors, Apple’s estimate of the M3 MacBook Air being 60 percent faster than the M1 counterpart might be possible. There is no way to say for sure, however.

Both the MacBook Air 13 and 15-inch models feature Liquid Retina displays with a (2,560 x 1, 664 pixels) resolution with a peak brightness of 500 nits. The laptops are paired with up to 16GB of RAM and it is configurable up to 24GB of RAM. They also get up to 512GB of SSD inbuilt storage which is configurable up to 2TB. The new MacBook Air models also come with a MagSafe 3 charging port, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and two Thunderbolt/USB 4 ports for multiple use cases.

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