Apple M4 vs Apple M3 – How Much of an Upgrade are We Getting Here?

Instead of debuting the new Apple M4 SoC inside a MacBook, Apple is doing it in the new iPad Pro. It’s thinner and blah blah blah. We’re not here to discuss tablets, we’re LaptopMedia after all. Today we’re here to offer some much-needed insights about the performance of this new M4 SoC and how good it will be when compared to the M3.

Let’s go and see what we can expect from the M4 SoC, as well as check out if you should consider upgrading.

The Cinebench R23 results are currently presumptive, based on the little information Apple has given out, and are subject to change.
We’ll be updating this article as soon as new information becomes available.

Specs table

We see that Apple is starting to ship more CPU cores with the M4, so we expect a decent increase in performance.

CPUCPU CoresGPU CoresMemory BandwidthUnified MemoryProcess Technology
Apple M4 (10-core CPU)4 performance cores + 6 efficiency cores10 cores120 GB/sN/A3 nm
Apple M3 (8-core CPU)4 performance cores + 4 efficiency cores8 cores or 10 cores102.4 GB/sup to 24GB3 nm


CPU benchmarks

The new chip M4 SoC, thanks to the additional cores and new architecture, squeezes out a 21% lead in the Geekbench 6 Mutli-core benchmark and an even bigger 22% lead in the Single-core benchmark.

CPUGeekbench 6 Single / Multi Score
Apple M43810 (+22%) / 14541 (+21%)
Apple M33135 / 12042

For a more real-life performance representation, we look to Cinebench R23. Here, based on the comparisons with M2, we expect a 25% increase, which would be mental for a year-on-year improvement. In a world where accustomed to single-digit annual jumps, this is a much welcomed change. Apple has been doing this with every year’s M-series chips, however, 25% is the biggest increase we’ve seen out of all M-series processors.

CPUCinebench R23
Apple M4Expected: 12542 (+25%)
Apple M310057

GPU benchmarks

The new GPU is a definite upgrade over the old one, with a 13% lead in the Geekbench Metal test.

GPUGeekbench 6 Metal
Apple M4 (10-core GPU)
53792 (+13%)
Apple M3 (10-core GPU)47686

When do you expect to see the new M4-based MacBooks? We’re betting on Q4 (Oct-Dec), which is the usual release date for MacBooks. While waiting, however, check out the current M3-based offerings, which are great devices. In fact, they give Windows laptops enough trouble that we’re now getting Snapdragon CPUs on laptops with Windows on ARM support.

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