Macbook Pro 2.4 -> 2.6Ghz upgrade is well worth it, read this to see why

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jbg232, Nov 10, 2007.

  1. jbg232 macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    I'm considering buying a macbook pro and was wondering if the $250 upgrade from 2.4ghz -> 2.6 ghz was worth it as many others have probably wondered as well.

    I came across this site and was very surprised to find out that for the $250 upgrade the performance increase is about 38% for 2.6 ghz over 2.4 ghz (CPU benchmark of 1653 for 2.6ghz vs. 1197 for 2.4ghz).

    I don't think that 38% is something to snub your nose at and for $250 the money is probably well spent. Of course, I don't know that much about processor rating tools so if this is an outlandish comparison and I'm missing something, please tell me. I just wanted to share this for people who had the same question
  2. Type121 macrumors regular

    Jul 5, 2004
    You're reading that chart wrong. The 2.6GHz processor you reference is not the chip in the MBP. The actual difference should be in the high single digit percentages at best.
  3. jbg232 thread starter macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    I don't think that's correct. The way I understand the processor models is this:

    Core 2 Duo 2.0 Ghz 800 Mhz FSB 4MB Cache = T7300
    Core 2 Duo 2.2 Ghz 800 Mhz FSB 4MB Cache = T7500
    Core 2 Duo 2.4 Ghz 800 Mhz FSB 4MB Cache = T7700
    Core 2 Duo 2.6 Ghz 800 Mhz FSB 4MB Cache = T7800 OR X7800 = Core 2 Duo or Core 2 Extreme but there is NO difference between them - see below
    Core 2 Duo 2.8 Ghz 800 Mhz FSB 4MB Cache = x7900 = Core 2 Extreme

    source =,,

    The point is that the T7800 and the X7800 are the exact same chip and motherboard support for that chip according to intel's own documents as listed above. I included screen shots of those tables to make the point.
    BTW, some of the image got cut off in the core 2 duo shot but the table headings are the exact same (you can go to the website to verify this) - there are NO extra features of a core 2 T7800 compared to a core 2 extreme X7800 (ie Side step technology, 64 bit, etc.)

    Does anyone have an explanation for this because from what it looks like you are essentially getting an extreme processor when you buy the 2.6Ghz macbook pro and thus you DO get the added benefits of 38% performance increase as shown in the original tables.

    [EDIT] After doing a little more reading online it appears that the core 2 extreme processors are just unlocked processors allowing the manufacturer to change the multipler and overclock them. Thus, there is no question that a T7800 = X7800 as they are both just overclocked processors as are X7900's.

    Attached Files:

  4. AustinDing macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2007
  5. nikhsub1 macrumors 68020


    Jun 19, 2007
    mmmm... jessica.'s beer...
    the chart is wrong. Just look at how the 2.0, 2.2 and even the 2.33 compare to the 2.4, not much difference. The 2.6 would scale the exact same way, 2.4 to 2.6 is ~ 5% at best.
  6. tersono macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2005
    Hmm... there's lies, damn lies and statistics... or in this case benchmarks ;)

    Anyhow, even if those benchmarks DID show that amount of difference, there's no way in hell that a 200MHz speed bump is going to make that much difference to perceived performance. Hell, I have on my desk a 17" MBP 2.4 and a 2.0 iMac. I'm really hard-pressed to tell any difference between them when using stuff like Photoshop, InDesign, etc....
  7. jbg232 thread starter macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    Maybe for some reason those programs aren't stressing the processor enough to notice the difference or there is a bottleneck somewhere else on the systems ie bus, ram, etc...?

    I don't disagree that you guys are all probably correct, I even said that I was surprised when I saw the benchmark myself, but that's what I found out from my research. If anyone else has some HARD EVIDENCE comparing the 2.4ghz to the 2.6ghz cpu in terms of performance increase I would like to see it as I may be making a purchase and all the actual DATA (not opinions based on other cpus extrapolated to these chips) would be helpful. You are probably correct, but please show me the evidence....
  8. grosbide macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2007
    In theory, it's a 7.692% increase in speed. Considering that we are talking about dual core cpus, and that one core is 2.6 gig , that's a 7.692% increase of a 5.2gig cpu (if both cpus are used of course). I think that's not too bad at all. In fact I ordered one... ;)
  9. ihatebarakobama macrumors newbie

    Apr 24, 2008
    Not true

    The 2.6 in the MacBook Pro is actually Penryn series Intel Core 2 Duo T9500 processor, and is really not that much faster than the 2.4, in the high single digits percentage better. However, 6 MB of L2 cache is much better than 2 MB. This is great for running heavy apps (like FCP) and doing a lot of processor demanding effects. Worth 250 bucks? If you have the dough yes, but if you are barely able to afford it, it is not worth it. Note: the 2.5 and the 2.6 have the same amount of L2 cache and difference will be not really noticeable, but the same rule applies for 2.4 to 2.6 as far as whether you need it. Then again, I got the 2.6 cause my MacBook Pro is a thing of beauty
  10. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    2.4-->2.6 might see a slight difference (still not worth the $$) but 2.5-->2.6 no noticable difference (also not worth the extra $$).
  11. cherry su macrumors 65816

    cherry su

    Feb 28, 2008
    He's talking about the Mid-2007 MacBook Pros
  12. DaLurker macrumors 6502

    Mar 30, 2006
    I've been messing around with CPU's since the Pentium 3 era and I can guarantee you there's something wrong with those benchmarks. There is no way a 200mHz increase in speed will net you 38% increase in processing power.
  13. asmallchild macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2007
  14. Kaupa macrumors regular

    Apr 16, 2008
    i ran Xbench and i got 110 scores overall with my T7700. Two friends of mine got the new 2.6 and they both got 129 scores BUT with a 7200 HDD, which may make quite a few points in that score...
  15. ilp macrumors member

    Sep 13, 2007
    It's a $500 difference, not just 250 bucks. Was not worth it for me.
  16. amac4me macrumors 65816


    Apr 26, 2005
    How do you plan to use your MBP? You should consider how you're going to use your system and then decided if any performance gain is worth it.

    Simply relying on specs and benchmarks isn't the best way to approach this.

    Good luck with your decision.
  17. Taiphun macrumors newbie

    Apr 22, 2008
    Well, if you look at the original date and the date Barak Obama replied to, that's almost 6 months.

    Alot has changed since then, so the original post is not relevant anymore.
  18. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    People should learn to just leave dead threads alone. *shakes head*
  19. cmm26red macrumors regular

    Jan 29, 2008
    First, you need to do your research and clarify a few things because your question/comments are incorrect.

    If you are referring to the Merom CPU (MBP identifier 3,1), the 2.4 (T7700) and 2.6 (T7800) have PassMark scores of 1276 and 1304 respectively, which is a little more than 2%; not 36%. The X7800 is irrelevant to this conversation for two reasons. First and most importantly, it was never offered in a MBP because it consumes to much power (44w vs 35w from a T7700 or T7800). Second, the X7800 has different steppings (E1) than the T7700 or T7800 (G0).

    If you are referiing to the Penryn CPU (MBP identifier 4,1), the 2.4 (T8300) has a PassMark score of 1371 and no score is yet listed for the 2.6 (T9500). The closest comparison would be the 2.5 (T9300) with a score of 1682. I have no idea where you got your numbers from because they do not match what I am seeing on the chart. Furthermore, the upgrade from a 2.4 to 2.6 Penryn is a lot more than $250, so I am unsure where you came up with that figure also. One last thing to note, PassMark scores represent the mean collected from users running the software and sharing their results.

    Granted, while the T7800 comes from the same CPU as the X7800, its internal mechanics are different. As I mentioned earlier, in consumes 9 more watts of power than a T7800. It also has different steppings and this is probably why it has a notably higher PassMark score compared to the T7800. Nevertheless, the X7800 was never offered in a MBP so it is irrelevant to this conversation.

    As I said earlier, you are very unclear about your comments/question. Your thread title states a conclusion, however, you open up the thread with a question (although it lacks a question mark). Here are some other benchamrks comparing MBPs. According to the tests Macworld ran, the 2.4 (T8300) Penryn performed favoribly when compared to a 2.6 (T7800) Merom MBP:

    Here are some test barefeat labs ran. As you can see, there is not 36% difference between the 2.4 and 2.6 Penryn MBP (maybe 10%). If you could, please clarify your comments!
  20. font9a macrumors newbie

    May 31, 2008
    you must be completely high.

    the penryn 2.6 core 2 duo has a 6MB L2 cache. you must have gotten your informations from a cereal box.

  21. iatropoul macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2008

    I benchmarked my mbp T9300 with sisoft sandra under vista 64. Results are awful. Sandra gives me almost the half score of a T9300 processor should give! Any ideas? I installed Vista 64 using bootcamp! So this is a native installation. I don't run vista using fusion.
  22. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2008
    No. This is silly, and if you used your head a bit, you'd know it was completely impossible.

    It's not even close to 38% faster. It's more like 5-10% faster, and that considering it's got more cache (low-end model has only 3 MB).
  23. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    OMG @ bump...

    And reinstall drivers iatropoul .
  24. iatropoul macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2008
    These are my Xbench cpu results under mac os 10.5.4

    Results 80.44
    System Info
    Xbench Version 1.3
    System Version 10.5.4 (9E17)
    Physical RAM 2048 MB
    Model MacBookPro4,1
    Drive Type Hitachi HTS542525K9SA00
    CPU Test 80.44
    GCD Loop 139.46 7.35 Mops/sec
    Floating Point Basic 67.71 1.61 Gflop/sec
    vecLib FFT 56.00 1.85 Gflop/sec
    Floating Point Library 100.71 17.54 Mops/sec

    I remind you that I have a penrynn T9300 MacBook pro! Are these results normal? I think my cpu underperforms and I don't know why! :mad:
  25. Fabiano macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2008
    Palmas, Brazil
    I see it as paying +$500 just to see my battery life getting worse. I mean, obviously the 2.6 needs more power than the 2.4 do. Thats why I stay with 2.4 :)

Share This Page