Buying a Windows Laptop vs Macbook Pro hardware specifications

Buying a Windows Laptop vs Macbook Pro hardware specifications

It seems there is a huge range of laptops available from many top brands, but which is right for you?

It would be nice to find if there is anything faster than our DELL desktop bought in 2019. Laptops have become the desktop replacement for many, and even myself finding it much more convenient to manage websites and almost everything else including video rendering. Our DELL optiplex is an i7 with 8 cores, yet i7 laptops and generally quad-core unless one is willing to spend over £2000 for a core-i9 workstation version. However there is intel’s competitor the AMD Ryzen models available.

Having reviewed a few laptops I’ve purchased at each generation chipset, the current 11th generation hit the mainstream market in late 2021. That said the 12th Gen Alder Lake chipset is out and already in some systems.

12th Gen Intel® Core™ mobile processors announced at CES 2022. With an all-new performance hybrid architecture. supports platform technologies like DDR5 memory, Thunderbolt™ 4 connectivity and Intel® Wi-Fi 6E (Gig+). Performance cores—or “P-cores”—maximize single-thread performance and responsiveness, while efficient cores—or “E-cores”—deliver scalable, multi-threaded performance and efficient offload of background tasks for modern multi-tasking.

Intel® Core™ i9 Processors deliver up to 10 unlocked cores for seamless 4K Ultra HD and 360 video, robust gameplay, and multitasking performance.

Intel® Core™ i7 Processors packs the power of up to 8 cores for accelerated computing supporting high-end gaming, connectivity, and security.

Intel® Core™ i5 Processors have exceptional performance for home and business PCs, with up to 6 cores for gaming, creativity and multitasking.

Processor Cores141414141012128
Processor Threads2020202016161612
Number of P-cores66666444
Number of E-cores88884884
Intel® Smart Cache (L3)24MB24MB24MB24MB24MB18MB18MB12MB
Max Turbo Frequency (GHz)3 up toP-core554.
Base Frequency (GHz)3P-core2.

Our 2019 9th Gen desktop has 2666mhz DDR4 RAM, yet most laptops have the same or slower in 2021. But good old HP on the other hand whom both my previous laptops are from, are using 3200mhz in both their budget and high end range models.

Looking at individual hardware components as upgrades it is possible to find that PC Motherboards support the following fast specs:

  • RAM: 3600Mhz, 4400mhz DDR4
  • DDR5 Memory, up to 6400(OC) MHz
  • Cores: 12
  • Nvme: PCIe® 5.0
  • Core i7, Core i9
  • RAM of 128 GB
  • 4K OLED display
  • BUS Clock speed 4800 MHz, 5333 MHz (O.C.)
  • WiFi 6 and 2.5G LAN

Many of these items at those specifications are not for sale yet but it is something to keep in mind if building your own system. As for laptops, there are mobile versions, usually with lower core numbers unless going for high end price range. But generally not worth it unless you have a load of simultaneous multi-tasking software. The exception comes if buying a Macbook.

what about the specs of Apple Laptops

There are a few main differences apart from the obvious price, they now come with an M1 CPU and all have retina displays.

Apple’s 8-cores M1 chip is essentially a combination of four “Firestorm” high-performance cores and four “Icestorm” energy-efficient cores.

The MacBook Pro come with an 8 or 10-core CPU in their new M1 Pro chips with a 14 or 16-core GPU. The M1 Max version, however, comes with 16-Core or 32-Core GPU. All of the M1 processors come with a 16-core Neural Engine.

All memory included with the Mac Pro is either 2666MHz or 2933MHz.

SpecificationApple M1 (2020)Apple M1 Pro (2021)Apple M1 Max (2021)
CPU Cores8 coresUp to 10 coresUp to 10 cores
CPU Performance Cores4 coresUp to 8 coresUp to 8 cores
CPU Efficiency c0res4 cores22
GPU cores7 or 814 or 1624 or 32
Neural Engine Cores161616
Manufacturing Process5nm5nm5nm
Transistors16 billion33.7 billion57 billion
Unified Memory8GB16GB16GB32GB32GB64GB
Memory Bandwidth68.25GB/s200GB/s400GB/s

Macbook Pros price ranges from £1400 up to £3,299.

For a good spec Windows Laptop you would be looking at a price range form £799 up to £3000. But remember to watch out, you do not want a bottleneck by having slow RAM.

The Core i9 processor is around 4% faster than the M1 Max chip.

Having a more powerful CPU that trades battery life in favour of raw performance.

12900HK vs M1
Intel 12th-gen vs Apple M1 processors: Performance provided by Intel