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iPad Air impressive in early benchmark testing

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The reviews of the upcoming iPad Air have been glowing — so glowing in fact that you'd be forgiven for thinking it was merely a case of Apple fan-boys unable to hide their excitement. Sure, the tech guys are excited, but what are the hard numbers? How does the iPad Air stack up in benchmark testing against previous models?

It turns out that the iPad Air stacks up incredibly.

Primate Labs tested the iPad Air using the cross-platform Geekbench Scores 3 benchmark tool and the results are impressive:

The iPad Air is more than 80 percent faster than the fourth-generation iPad and five times faster than the iPad 2. Given that the iPad Air is only a hundred dollars more than the iPad 2, Apple's decision to keep the older iPad around instead of the iPad 4 is odd. Perhaps they''re hoping customers will look at the specs and price difference, and go for the slightly more expensive, but significantly more powerful, iPad Air.

The iPad Air hits stores this Friday.

Geek bench antutu

Geekbench Score

Geekbench Scores

Samsung Geekbench

Primate Labs posts new iMac benchmarks

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The company that provides the amazing Geekbench benchmarking software, Primate Labs, has run its tests on the new 21.5-inch iMac and found that it's a pretty impressive piece of hardware.

Primate Labs tested all of the configurations of the new iMac, but it's the top-of-the-line unit sporting an Intel Core i7-3770S clocked at 3.1 GHz that tops the speed test for all iMacs. To quote the benchmark post, " Geek bench antutu The benefits of the new Ivy Bridge processors are clear; Samsung Geekbench the new Geek bench antutu high-end 21.5-inch Samsung Geekbench iMac is almost 10 percent faster than the old high-end 27-inch iMac."

The benchmark score for the high-end 21.5-inch iMac was 12,447, while that of the old (mid-2011) high-end 27-inch iMac was 11,410. A comparison to the high-end 2012 Mac mini shows that it's no slouch, either — it came in at 11,595. Of course, if you want to kick some serious computing butt, you'll still need to get a Mac Pro — the fastest 12-core unit weighs in at a Geekbench score of 22,271.

It should be interesting to see the results for the 27-inch iMac that will be shipping in about two weeks. The top-end unit features a 3.4 GHz Intel Core i7 that will likely leave the 21.5-inch model in the dust.

iPad Air: Unboxing, first impressions and benchmarks

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Today's the first day of availability for the new iPad Air, and after totally forgetting to order it online at 1 AM MT, I got onto the online Apple Store at around 7:30 AM to order one. After confirming that the model I wanted — 32 GB, silver, AT&T — was in stock at the Aspen Grove Apple Store in Littleton, CO, I pushed the button. I picked it up at around 11:30 AM, and was in and out of the store in about five minutes.

I'm one of those sick individuals who tends to hold onto the old boxes for my Apple products, so I was able to do a quick size comparison with the 3rd-generation iPad and iPad mini. The box was the same height and thickness as that of the iPad, but not as wide. With that silliness out of the way, it was time to grab the scissors and actually open the box:

I apologize for the video quality, but I get sooo excited with a new iPad. Some people like new cars, some people get excited about new clothes, I love new tech.

It's when you first get your hands on the iPad Air that you realize just how good a job Apple did at trimming the weight. It weighs only about 6 ounces more than an iPad mini, as you'll see in the weigh-in pictures in the slideshow below.

Gallery: iPad Air | 9 Photos
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I found the display on the iPad Air to be slightly brighter than that of the 17-month-old 3rd-generation iPad at the same brightness setting, and it had a slightly warmer tint to it. There's a side-by-side image in the slideshow that demonstrates this.

In terms of speed, the Air seems to be quite snappy. «Snappy» isn't a good quantitative unit of measure, so I installed Geekbench Scores 3 on all three iPads to get a much better picture of exactly how fast they all are:

Geekbench Score Comparison
SIngle-Core Score Multi-Core Score

iPad Air 1469 2675

iPad (3rd-Gen.) 262 494

iPad mini (1st-Gen.) 259 468
Yes, the iPad Air is FAST. All apps except Geekbench were shut down and the devices were restarted before running the benchmark. The device specs are as follows:

Device Specifications
Model iPad Air iPad (3rd-Gen.) iPad mini (1st-Gen.)

OS Version 7.0.3 7.0.3 7.0.3

Processor A7 @ 1.39 GHz A5X @ 1.00 GHz A5 @ 1.00 GHz

RAM 976 MB 988 MB 503 MB

Storage 32 GB 32 GB 16 GB
All in all, my initial impressions of the iPad Air are very favorable. I hope to do some additional tests in the near future for publication here on TUAW.

Geekbench Scores

Geek bench antutu

Geekbench Scores

Geek bench antutu

Samsung Geekbench

Alienware Area-51m vs. Origin PC Eon-17X: Battle of the big laptop-desktop hybrids

id=«article-body» class=«row» section=«article-body»> Sarah Tew/CNET Years ago, one could make a legitimate argument that real high-end PC gaming required an actual desktop PC, Geekbench Score because so-called gaming laptops just weren't up to the task. Back then, you often paid a significant premium for Samsung Geekbench much slower performance, Geekbench Score and your laptop graphics hardware wouldn't age well at all.

January 2010 | TechspotOver time, however, the difference has narrowed significantly. So much so that starting with the GeForce GTX 10 series in 2016 and continuing with the new RTX 20 series, Geek bench antutu GPU leader Nvidia no longer splits mobile graphics off into a separate product line. The desktop and laptop versions share the same names and very close to the same capabilities.

But while gaming laptops are better than ever, thanks in part to those Nvidia's GTX and RTX GPUs, there's yet another level serious laptop gamers can aspire to. A very few laptops go that extra mile and include actual desktop components inside oversize laptop frames.

Now playing: Watch this: Alienware Area-51m promises power and upgrades 1:53 We've seen a handful of these ambitious experiments over the years, and right now two of the latest models have just been tested in the CNET Labs. The Alienware Area-51m and Origin PC Eon-17X both feature the desktop-class Intel Core i9-9900K and the new Nvidia RTX 2080 GPU. This combination made these our two top-performing laptops so far from all of 2018-2019.

What's the difference between these two? Here's where they diverge.

Cost
The Alienware is a hefty $4,499 as configured, which is pretty far up the laptop scale. The very similar Origin we tested (note it has 16GB of RAM versus 32GB in the Alienware) rings up at about $3,800. Component prices can shift quickly, so build-to-order systems like this may cost more or less depending on exactly when you order.

Design
Both of these are huge, desk-hogging monsters. For the Area-51m, Alienware says it spent years working on a top-to-bottom redesign. In my opinion, it doesn't go far enough, but it's still a carefully designed, aesthetically pleasing laptop that makes the most of its bulk. The Eon-17X, as in the case of most boutique gaming laptops, is built into a generic-looking off-the-shelf chassis that has hardly changed over the past few years. Many custom lid color and illustration options are available, but let's just say that you're really going for inner beauty here.

Upgradability
User-accessible parts have really been a major selling point of the Area-51m. Its desktop CPU can be replaced, and so can its semicustom GPU. But, it's not easy to get to those parts without doing some midlevel surgery on your system, and the GPU can only be replaced by hypothetical future compatible parts, which don't yet exist. 

Origin PC doesn't promise CPU or GPU upgrades, but the company does offer free labor on RAM and storage upgrades if you send the system to them. Origin PC, in addition to its stellar reputation for hands-on support, offers a much wider array of configuration options in its system-building tool, so you should be able to hit your dream specs pretty closely from the start. 

Sarah Tew/CNET These are both great gaming laptops, aimed at slightly different slices of the same high-end market. If you're looking for a laptop with the beating heart of a desktop, Samsung Geekbench here's our head-to-head guide to these two leading choices. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of products featured on this page.

Two laptops with desktop CPUs compared

System: Geek bench antutu Alienware Area-51m Origin PC Eon-17X

Price as reviewed (USD) $4,499 $3,750

Display size/resolution 17.3-inch, 1,920x1,080 display 17.3-inch, 1,920x1,080 display

CPU 3.6GHz Intel Core i9-9900K 3.6GHz Intel Core i9-9900K

Memory 32GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 3GHz

Graphics 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 8GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080

Storage (2) 512GB SSD RAID 0 + 1TB HDD 500GB SSD + 2TB HDD

Networking 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 4.1 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 4.1

Operating system Windows 10 Home (64-bit) Windows 10 Home (64-bit)
Geekbench 4 (multicore)
Alienware Area-51m 30,271 Origin PC Eon-17X 29,598 Note:
Longer bars indicate better performance. 3DMark Port Royal (RTX)
Alienware Area-51m 5,769 Origin PC Eon-17X 5,735 Note:
Longer bars indicate better performance. Metro Exodus RTX benchmark (fps)
Alienware Area-51m 62.24 Origin PC Eon-17X 60.22 Note:
Longer bars indicate better performance. Shadow of the Tomb Raider (fps)
Alienware Area-51m 121 Origin PC Eon-17X 114 Note:
Longer bars indicate better performance. See the Area-51m at Alienware
See the Eon-17X at Origin PC