GPU Performance

The Core i5/i7 offered in the 13-inch rMBP integrate Intel's HD 4000 graphics. Although it's a significant step above the HD 3000 (and everything that Intel made before it), the 4000 doesn't yet deliver dGPU levels of performance. Instead you get enough performance to drive older games (e.g. Half Life 2 Episode Two) at mainstream resolutions. Even Starcraft 2 wasn't too bad on the 13, but I had to run the game at 1280 x 800 with medium quality defaults. There's pretty much no chance you're going to run any game at the panel's native 2560 x 1600 resolution. Heavier workloads aren't going to fare well on the 13 either.

I'd consider the 13-inch MacBook Pro enough for light, casual gaming, or basically anything you'd run on a MacBook Air - but nothing more. OS X is still not a very robust gaming platform so I don't know how big of a deal this is, but if you care about GPU performance you're going to want the 15-inch rMBP instead.

Portal 2 Performance

Half Life 2 Episode Two Performance

Half Life 2 Episode Two Performance

Starcraft 2 - GPU Bench

Starcraft 2 - GPU Bench

Starcraft 2 - GPU Bench

Starcraft 2 - CPU Bench

Starcraft 2 - CPU Bench

Starcraft 2 - CPU Bench

General Performance Battery Life
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  • Spunjji - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    As of a few days ago Adobe updated Lightroom to include Retina support in the Develop window. That means the UI will scale while the image remains at a 1 for 1 pixel mapping and is unaffected by scaling. Reply
  • piroroadkill - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    In your chart noting the different screen ratios, you have Retina MacBook Pro under 16:9 - clearly incorrect, 2560x1600 and 2880x1800 for the 13 and 15 inch respectively are 8:5 ratios (16:10 in common terms). Reply
  • Beerfloat - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    A MacBook Pro needs a GPU, period. Sure, performance of the Intel solution is getting stronger, and may soon reach parity on the low end. But more importantly, the mature driver and ecosystem that Nvidia brings will still be an advantage for some generations to come.
    This kind of corner cutting is almost acceptable in the Air. But not in a Pro.
    Reply
  • Spunjji - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    Agreed. Shame, but definitely a compromise too far. Reply
  • mayankleoboy1 - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    " I definitely noticed the missing cores (and decrease in clock speed compared to the higher spec'd 15),"

    What are you doing that makes use of 4 real cores ? And is the 200mhz speed difference really noticable ?
    I would say that in normal surfing+office apps, a SSD would make all the differences between CPU redundant...
    Reply
  • jramskov - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    Lightroom would be one answer. Reply
  • mayankleoboy1 - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    But does Anand even use it ? Regularly ? Reply
  • tipoo - Friday, December 07, 2012 - link

    Why would someone buy this for "surfing+office apps"? It's meant to be a machine for professionals and high end users, hence Pro. Reply
  • smurray - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    What app is being used to measure the FPS of the UI during things like Safari scrolling? I currently have an 13" rMBP w/ the upgraded i7 CPU and am curious what my results would be compared to what was experienced in the review. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    For instantaneous tests like Safari (where you see the speedometer-styled FPS indicator), we use Quartz Debug. For average framerates over a period of time we use the GL Injection Tool. Reply

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