2011 MacBook Pros benchmarked

The new MacBook Pro range has barely got used to living outside its box, but early benchmark scores are already starting to show some pretty amazing performance scores from Apple's premium laptops.

Primate Labs, which develops the GeekBench application for Mac speed testing, has put the full range under the microscope and has some pretty nice things to say about Apple's Sandy Bridge-powered offerings.

It turns out that, although the new models look much the same at first glance - despite the addition of the new Thunderbolt port - most of the good stuff is going on under the aluminium unibody shell.

Using GeekBench 2, which only measures the pure power of the memory and processors, Primate Labs found that the cheapest 2011 MacBook Pro is pretty much as nippy as the fastest model from the previous generation, and that the most expensive version is as much as 80 per cent faster than its predecessor.

In fact, the 17-inch 2011 MacBook Pro will give the currently available grown-up Mac Pro a run for its money in terms of pure processing grunt, leading Primate's Lab-bound geeks to remark that the new models "truly are portable workstations".