Apple MacBook Pro with M1 Max Lags Far behind NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Laptop GPU in Gaming Tests

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Image: Apple

Benchmarks for Apple’s new M1 Pro- and M1 Max-equipped MacBook Pro models have begun surfacing from various tech outlets. One of the more comprehensive reports comes from AnandTech, which shared some benchmarks offering insight on how the new chips might handle modern games. The metrics reveal that even the more powerful M1 Max with up to 32-core GPU has trouble coming anywhere close to NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 3080 laptop GPU in games such as Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Borderlands 3, although that might not be shocking considering they’re x86 titles. Other tests such as the GFXBench 5.0 Aztec Ruins benchmark suggest that Apple may not have been exaggerating with its claim of the M1 Max offering graphics performance “comparable to that in a high-end compact PC pro laptop.”

AnandTech on Shadow of the Tomb Raider:

Image: AnandTech
Image: AnandTech

[…] the M1 Max in particular is CPU limited at 1080p; the x86-to-Arm translation via Rosetta is not free, and even though Apple’s CPU cores are quite powerful, they’re hitting CPU limitations here. We have to go to 4K just to help the M1 Max fully stretch its legs. Even then the 16-inch MacBook Pro is well off the 6800M. Though we’re definitely GPU-bound at this point, as reported by both the game itself, and demonstrated by the 2x performance scaling from the M1 Pro to the M1 Max.

AnandTech on Borderlands 3:

Image: AnandTech
Image: AnandTech

[…] Borderlands 3 ends up being even worse for the M1 chips than Shadow of the Tomb Raider. The game seems to be GPU-bound at 4K, so it’s not a case of an obvious CPU bottleneck. And truthfully, I don’t enough about the porting work that went into the Mac version to say whether it’s even a good port to begin with. So I’m hesitant to lay this all on the GPU, especially when the M1 Max trails the RTX 3080 by over 50%. Still, if you’re expecting to get your Claptrap fix on an Apple laptop, a 2021 MacBook Pro may not be the best choice.

Apple announced its M1 Pro and M1 Max chips last week, noting that they were the most powerful chips that the company had every built. The M1 Max features 10 CPU cores, up to 32 GPU cores, and up to 64 GB of unified memory.

Source: AnandTech

Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

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