Intel claims its new Core i9 processor is faster than Apple’s M1 Max

Intel on Tuesday announced the 12th generation of its mobile processors focused on laptops and smaller computers. According to Intel, the new Core i9 processor is faster than the Apple M1 Max.

M1 Max is the largest chip Apple has ever built: 57 billion transistors and up to 64GB of fast unified memory.
M1 Max is the largest chip Apple has ever built: 57 billion transistors and up to 64GB of fast unified memory.

Filipe Espósito for 9to5Mac:

With frequencies up to 5GHz and 14 cores (with 6 high-performance cores and 8 energy-efficient cores), Intel says the 12th-generation Core i9 processor is the “fastest mobile processor” on the market.

The company explicitly compares the new Intel Core i9 12900HK with the Apple M1 Max… For comparison, the M1 Max chip reaches up to 3.2GHz with its 10 cores (of which eight are high-performance cores and two are energy-efficient cores).

Where Apple triumphs with its ARM-based Apple Silicon chips is energy efficiency. While the Intel Core i9 consumes up to 115 watts of power, the power consumption of the M1 Max chip stays around 60 watts most of the time, and hardly exceeds 90 watts when running at full performance.

As we’ve been seeing with the M1 Macs, the lower power consumption allows the construction of more compact machines that don’t suffer from thermal throttling and reduced performance. This is something Intel is unlikely to beat with the old x86 architecture.

MacDailyNews Take: This is being typed on a 16-inch MacBook Pro with an 8-Core Intel i9 (2.4 GHz) and we’re concerned the fan is going to fly out of its finely-crafted aluminum case. It sounds like a Cessna taking off.

Apple 16-inch MacBook Pro with an Intel i9 inside is hot garbage.

It’s one of the worst Macs we’ve ever used (still better than the best Windows PC ever made).

When it’s not plugged in, spinning our electric meter like Pat Sajak, we have to throttle it down using Turbo Boost Switcher Pro and dim the display to barely readable to get any reasonable battery life out of it at all.

Intel snail

It’s trash simply because of the antiquated Intel i9 inside.

The M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro models are pure joys to use on and off the desktop. Full speed, bright displays, no fan noise, no excessive heat, no need to throttling down via third-party apps to try to make the battery last. There is simply no comparison.

Intel is desperate. Intel makes inefficient junk that for years has ruined otherwise excellent MacBook Pros.

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28 Comments

  1. Well there’s opinion and then there’s facts.

    I have a 2020 M1 MBP. It’s nice.

    I just built a new desktop for myself based on the i9-12900K. Case, MB, 32 GB DDR5 RAM, 1 TB Samsung 980 Pro, Water Cooling and 1000 W Power Supply. $1700.

    Also, due to an open standard, I was able to repurpose my two TitanX (Maxwell) video cards ($2,200 from years ago) which are still relevant.

    Geekbench 5

    Single-Core Score 1910
    Multi-Core Score 17432
    Geekbench 5.4.4 for Windows x86 (64-bit)

    It’s also very quiet.

    I don’t expect desktop performance from my laptop, I don’t expect thinness or power savings from my desktop. Best of both worlds I suppose.

    And I’m grateful to Apple for embarrassing everyone else into action. Screw loyalty.

      1. Whisper quiet all the time.
        Power savings where it matters, and that’s the mobile computer.
        What would this level of performance cost me in a Mac? At what restrictive sacrifice?

        1. Your posts are one sided BS and have a knack for misrepresenting the limitations of the i9 compared to M1.

          You did not address my post: “You don’t expect desktop performance or power savings. Yup, resign yourself you can’t expect what is unavailable…”

          Spin it or deflect in your favor all you want we all read between the lines in your carefully worded posts…

          1. Let me put it another way….

            I want flat out speeds and feeds from my desktop. A full desktop is not size restricted and can have water cooling multiple video cards, it does not suffer from mobile restrictions and compromises. It is also fully serviceable and upgradable.

            Now, do tell me how you’re not “mobile biased”?

      1. I use that quote often. Most projects still have flaws and can be tweaked to death. I often quote SJ to helps get things out the door. The original quote was because the original Mac was unveiled, but the team was distraught because the space bar had to be pressed to continue the startup sequence. SJ told them that real artists ship and not to worry.

    1. I too cannot wait until someone does a laptop to laptop performance shootout across several difference performance measurements. Hopefully we’ll get one soon from BareFeats, Anandtech, or other. Anyone can make claims. Also, Intel has a long history of fudging canned, synthetic benchmarks. Remember the Dhrystone fiasco way back when?

  2. I seem to remember Qualcomm yearly claiming to match the previous version A series and when real life tests took place some time after the or blitz caught the eye they never got near to the promises. Let’s see what happens in this case, I suspect a similar outcome, certainly in anything short of a briefcase.

  3. The i9 is only powerful as the links within the processing chain. The processor is still limited by the heat it generates, the power it consumes and the narrow bandwidth it has to RAM. This in turns leads to a poorer customer experience with higher heat (i.e. wasted energy), noisy fans, bigger cases for heat dissipation, bigger power supplies, and bottlenecks when running intensive tasks.

    Apple’s ship has long sailed because they don’t have to endure the production delays, quality issues or design choices for the PC market that stifles Apple’s innovation.

      1. SoC is not written in Ledgers post. Meaningless hit an run deflection.

        Ledgers post let’s see if you up to HONEST debate both sides point by point, minus the usual cherry-picking, obfuscation and deflection.

        “The i9 is only powerful as the links within the processing chain. The processor is still limited by the heat it generates, the power it consumes and the narrow bandwidth it has to RAM. This in turns leads to a poorer customer experience with higher heat (i.e. wasted energy), noisy fans, bigger cases for heat dissipation, bigger power supplies, and bottlenecks when running intensive tasks.”

  4. However, the Max chip is an SoC and has other fast-process components built into it, so it’s definitely useful for mobile computing. I suppose Intel’s i9 easily takes the Max on the desktop platform. Apple’s chips are built specifically for Macs and that’s OK by me. It was nice to hear that Apple Silicon was strong and it still is. It’s just not the top dog anymore. Apple did it’s best and that’s a good thing. Intel is willing to throw everything at Apple and AMD to prove Intel can build the best processors in the world. They’re sinking enough money into chip-making so they better have good results.

    Apple will simply continue along with its set Apple Silicon plans and those plans are probably good enough to build some very powerful Macs in the future. I’m happy as even now Apple is selling computers at reasonable prices that are more powerful than what I’ll ever need.

    1. Correct on all counts, imo.
      Comparisons of these Apple SoCs to desktops is appropriate though since Apple uses them in desktops and, though correctly, they bragged they were faster than most desktops at the time.

      On the desktop, the time has passed, and Nvidia, AMD, Intel and others will not sit still.

      1. At some point, you’re still stuck using Windows OS. I honestly couldn’t care less about chip specs — every time I’m forced to use a Windows PC at work, I realize how happy I am using a Mac 99 percent of the time.

  5. Sounds like MDN needs to lubricate their fans’ bearings. With the alleged level of noise, imagine the heat that is generated by that fan that needs to be dissipated in addition to the heat from the other PC components.

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