When Apple announced a brand new MacBook Air and MacBook Pro both featuring its custom M1 chip last week, the company did nothing if not talk up the internals of the machines. With both available today, users are already putting them to the test – and the performance of the MacBook Air is proving particularly impressive.
Apple claims that the updated MacBook Air is up to twice as fast as the previous Intel model (released this March), and benchmarks for the newly released machine have revealed that this isn't all talk. Could the Air finally join the Pro in our best laptops for graphic design list?
According to MacRumors (opens in new tab), SSD benchmarks for the M1 MacBook Air have revealed that the machine is indeed twice as fast as the Intel version, with a write speed of 2190 MB/s and a read speed of 2675 MB/s.
When Apple announced the new M1 Mac range, it explicitly stated that users can expect double the speed from, the new chip. "The M1 chip’s storage controller and latest flash technology deliver up to 2x faster SSD performance," the company said, "so previewing massive images or importing large files is faster than ever."
While users looking for the most powerful possible MacBook should opt for the Pro (the addition of fans means it can handle intensive tasks for longer), the Air's hugely improved performance could be truly exciting news for creatives looking for the ultimate combination of power and portability. It seems Apple's claims (opens in new tab) that the MacBook Air "will redefine what a thin and light notebook can do” may well be true, as the Air becomes more, well, Pro.
It's just as well that the new MacBook Air is hugely impressive on the inside. When it comes to the outside, we were disappointed that both the M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro look identical to their predecessors (is it too much to ask for a Mac that's actually new?).
Still, it's performance that truly matters to most creatives, and it seems the M1 MacBook Air could be Apple's first truly portable powerhouse. These benchmarks are an encouraging start for Apple's M1 journey, and we've no doubt some similarly impressive numbers will soon emerge for the MacBook Pro and Mac Mini. You can find the best deals on Apple's brand new Macs below, and don't forget to check out the best offers available as part of Apple Black Friday.
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