Saturday, Feb 20, 2021, 20:22 Mac: Software

MacBook Pro M1 Outperforms High-End PC In Photo Editing But Not Video Editing

The newest M1 Macs' 2 greatest strengths are without a doubt photo and video editing, as documented by countless benchmarks and YouTube videos. However, application speed is somewhat dependent upon whether or not applications are compiled for Apple Silicon or run on the new architecture via Rosetta 2. A professional photographer has now determined the extent of these performance differences with a practical test.

MacBook Pro M1 vs. AMD Ryzen 9
CNET photographer Andrew Hoyle tested his MacBook Pro M1 against a high-end PC equipped with AMD's 16 core Ryzen 9 3950 X, 128 Gigabyte SSD, and RTX Titan GPU from Nvidia. First, however, he compared the speed of native M1 apps with their Intel variants. To test this, both versions of Photoshop (the Apple Silicon version is still in beta) were made to combine 19 RAW photos and then combine them into one image using focus stacking. According to Hoyle, this is a task that he performs almost daily – as he predominantly produces product photos.



Photoshop For M1 Destroys The Intel Version
The M1 Photoshop Beta accomplished the aforementioned task in 69.5 seconds, whereas the Rosetta 2 Intel version of the program needed 147.2 seconds, slightly more than twice as long. The Windows computer was just barely beaten by the MacBook Pro and took 73.2 seconds – an impressive result, given that the MacBook Pro M1 isn't a "high-end" computer.

Windows Computer Outperforms M1 Mac In Video Exporting
A different result was realized with Adobe Premiere. The Intel variant of Photoshop took 385 seconds to export a full HD video – considerably more time than the version optimized for M1 Macs, which took 204 seconds. The increase in speed seen on the M1 Mac was reduced in comparison to the previous task. The Windows PC with its Ryzen CPU and Nvidia GPU clearly beat the MacBook Pro in this task, taking only 80 seconds.

MacBook Pro M1 Holds Up Well In Tasks With Other Apps
Hoyle's tests run on other applications also showed that the M1 Mac was capable of holding up against the Windows PC in a wide variety of situations, even when Rosetta 2 was used. For example, the not-yet-optimized version of Capture One was only slightly slower on the M1 Mac than on the Windows PC at importing 100 RAW photos. The M1 beta version from DaVinci Resolve Studio ran extremely fluid. By the end of the various tests, CNET's Hoyle was quite impressed with the MacBook Pro M1's performance.

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