Apple's M1 chip smashes Intel and AMD in new single-thread benchmarks

Macbook Air M1
Macbook Air M1 (Image credit: Daniel Bader / iMore)

What you need to know

  • New Apple silicon benchmarks have revealed the power of the M1 chip.
  • It destroyed processors from both Intel and AMD in single-thread performance.

New benchmarks for the M1 Apple silicon chip reveal Apple's first attempt at a processor is faster than every single AMD processor and all but one Intel i9 chip in single-thread performance.

From Notebook Check:

The M1 Apple Silicon has jumped into second place in the current PassMark CPU Mark chart for desktop chip single-thread performance, with a current score of 3,550 points. This is a few points ahead of the Intel Core i7-11700K (3,542 points), which Gamers Nexus brutally described as a "waste of sand". While there's no chance of the Apple M1 catching the chart champion i9-11900K on 3,741 points, it might certainly be another sign that it could be Alder Lake, and not Rocket Lake, that offers a complete reversal of fortune for Intel.

As the report notes, the only chip it couldn't beat was Intel's i9-11900K processor, which costs almost as much as the M1 Mac Mini. Second in the desktop CPU rankings for single-thread performance, the M1 beat every laptop CPU on PassMark by some distance.

Apple introduced the M1 chip to its M1 MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac Mini in November of last year, and they're easily the best Mac devices available right now. The low-powered chip for Apple's laptops and base-model Mac Mini has proven to be something of a powerhouse, and Apple is likely to build on this growth when it releases the second generation of Apple silicon this year. In fact, benchmarks last year show that the M1-powered Mac can emulate x86 instructions faster than they can run natively on an Intel-powered computer.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9