Rosetta 2 Benchmarks Surface From Mac Mini With A12Z Chip

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While the terms and conditions for Apple's new "Developer Transition Kit" forbid developers from running benchmarks on the modified Mac mini with an A12Z chip, it appears that results are beginning to surface anyhow.

Image Credit: Radek Pietruszewski

Geekbench results uploaded so far suggest that the A12Z-based Mac mini has average single-core and multi-core scores of 811 and 2,781 respectively. Keep in mind that Geekbench is running through Apple's translation layer Rosetta 2, so an impact on performance is to be expected. Apple also appears to be slightly underclocking the A12Z chip in the Mac mini to 2.4GHz versus nearly 2.5GHz in the latest iPad Pro models.


It's also worth noting that Rosetta 2 appears to only use the A12Z chip's four "performance" cores and not its four "efficiency" cores.

By comparison, iPad Pro models with the A12Z chip have average single-core and multi-core scores of 1,118 and 4,625 respectively. This is native performance, of course, based on Arm architecture.


Article Link: Rosetta 2 Benchmarks Surface From Mac Mini With A12Z Chip
 
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SaxPlayer

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2007
609
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Dorset, England
We all knew that this would happen. However, we also know that the real Apple Silicon Macs will use a completely different chip, no doubt modified and optimised in ways we don't know about yet. While this is interesting (and I'll read all the news articles that come up about this), its going to tell us next to nothing about what's coming.
 

Madhatter32

macrumors regular
Apr 17, 2020
130
203
Apple needs to do better than this for desk top performance. I am a little scared now.

EDIT: I retract this statement due to all the negative reactions. But, Apple still needs to do better than this for desk top performance. I am not scared though.
 
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Arline

macrumors regular
Jun 10, 2010
213
54
Really underwhelming results, makes me wonder if it was the right time for Apple to do this, or maybe they should have waited a few more years for the silicon team to catch up to Intel, or maybe they should have just gone with AMD.

Edit: I retract what I said, clearly I didn't know enough to make a comment. Thanks everyone who corrected me.
 
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Rudy69

macrumors 6502a
Mar 30, 2009
658
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I thought one of the rules was no benchmarking for developers who received one. So much for that.
Yea because no one was going to do that :rolleyes:

It surprised me it took this long lol
- - Post merged: - -

Looks like these are only running on 4 cores, probably because apple didn’t bother to teach the thread scheduler how to optimize for a12z which will never be in any real product.
It could be a limitation of Rosetta 2
- - Post merged: - -

Really underwhelming results, makes me wonder if it was the right time for Apple to do this, or maybe they should have waited a few more years for the silicon team to catch up to Intel, or maybe they should have just gone with AMD.
This is a beta version of Rosetta 2 running on 2 year old hardware. This is why they didn't want benchmarks.

As someone pointed out it's not even using all the cores
 

Mescagnus

macrumors regular
Jul 12, 2008
248
306
Apple needs to do better than this for desk top performance. I am a little scared now.
Really underwhelming results, makes me wonder if it was the right time for Apple to do this, or maybe they should have waited a few more years for the silicon team to catch up to Intel, or maybe they should have just gone with AMD.
Remember that A12 is two years old. It is not a part of the "Family of CPU's for desktop" that will be in the first Apple Silicon Macs.
 

webpoet73

macrumors regular
Jul 29, 2010
117
15
Alpharetta, GA
Also would like to see Cinebench scores. From what I have read, this is dumbed down chip. I am no fan of moving to ARM, but IF the performance is there and some way to continue to use bootcamp, then ok. I have W10 installed in BootCamp and use it sometimes for playing games. I get 60FPS in Gears 5 on Radeon Pro 580X. The iMac monitor only supports 60Hz, so no big deal there.
 

cmaier

Suspended
Jul 25, 2007
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Also would like to see Cinebench scores. From what I have read, this is dumbed down chip. I am no fan of moving to ARM, but IF the performance is there and some way to continue to use bootcamp, then ok. I have W10 installed in BootCamp and use it sometimes for playing games. I get 60FPS in Gears 5 on Radeon Pro 580X. The iMac monitor only supports 60Hz, so no big deal there.
Cinebench scores on this machine, running on half its own cores, not being the same chip as macs will use, underclocked, and with a mobile, not desktop, GPU, will tell you nothing.
 

chucker23n1

macrumors 601
Dec 7, 2014
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Hm, so about 27.4% (single-core) / 39.9% overhead. That's not terrible for emulation.

Looks like these are only running on 4 cores, probably because apple didn’t bother to teach the thread scheduler how to optimize for a12z which will never be in any real product.
Could be.

Apple needs to do better than this for desk top performance. I am a little scared now.
I really wouldn't put too much thought into how indicative these are of real-world perf.

For starters, that chip is almost two generations old now. We already know the A13 is about 19% faster per core. We don't know what A14 will be like, but probably another several percent.

On top of that, a Mac mini has far more headroom than an iPad. They can put a much beefier CPU in there, probably with more cores, and likely at a higher clock.

And finally, of course, these are emulated results.
 

LeeW

macrumors 65816
Feb 5, 2017
1,419
2,145
Glasgow, Scotland
You all thought amazing results were going to be seen, you all thought Apple wouldn't actually think people would try and benchmark. Lol at all of you wanting more and more benchmarks like they will tell you anything.

Apple needs to do better than this for desk top performance. I am a little scared now.
This is the kind of response that makes you appreciate how little knowledge so many members here actually have of what is happening. And there will be more of these comments to come in this thread, many more.
 

Woochoo

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2014
401
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Really underwhelming results, makes me wonder if it was the right time for Apple to do this, or maybe they should have waited a few more years for the silicon team to catch up to Intel, or maybe they should have just gone with AMD.
A12Z is a 7W chip designed for a tablet, slightly underclocked (compared to the iPad Pro), yet it's almost there compared with the 28W range of i5 designed for laptops (way less thermal and energy constrained) in single and multicore. Keep in mind The A12Z CPU is basically the same 2018's A12X, so we are talking about a 2yo tablet chip if we only look at CPU benchmarks.

So knowing all this, how is that underwhelming?
 

RobbieTT

macrumors 6502
Apr 3, 2010
325
331
United Kingdom
Really underwhelming results, makes me wonder if it was the right time for Apple to do this, or maybe they should have waited a few more years for the silicon team to catch up to Intel, or maybe they should have just gone with AMD.
You are so right; if Apple does decide to launch a 2-year old design CPU, run it on just 4 of the 8 cores and under-clock it slightly and run everything through Rosetta then this benchmark will support your musings.

Many hold a view that Apple will not do any of the above. But you never know, you could be right.
 
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