[OS X TeX] speed of typesetting on a MacBook?

William Adams will.adams at frycomm.com
Thu Jan 12 07:00:26 EST 2006

On Jan 11, 2006, at 8:38 PM, Nathan Dunfield wrote:
> One would expect TeXing on the new MacBook to be very fast.  The  
> processor from which the Intel Core Duo processor is derived, the  
> single core Pentium-M, turns out the some of the highest TeX  
> benchmarks of any processor (laptop or not).  For instance,
> 	http://www.nslog.org/latex.html
> is somewhat out of date, but it shows a 1.6 Ghz Pentium-M laptop  
> being 38% _faster_ than a Dual 2GHz Powermac G5.   (There's a 17in  
> Powerbook on the list, too, a 1.33 Ghz, which is 3 times slower  
> than the Pentium-M.)   Of course, whether this benchmark is really  
> representative of ones actual daily TeXing tasks is another  
> matter.  However, it seems reasonable that a lower-bound on the  
> MacBooks' performance would be that of a random recent Pentium-M  
> laptop, so you could probably do a couple tests on a friends PC  
> laptop to get a better idea of how much performance you'd actually  
> gain here.

FWIW, here's the time for my new Dual 2.3GHz G5 1.5GB RAM:

Output written on source2e.pdf (445 pages, 1243204 bytes).
Transcript written on source2e.log.
7.230u 0.420s 0:07.91 96.7%     0+0k 0+16io 0pf+0w

on the third run.

So if the MacBook is going to be faster than a Pentium-M, I think  
it's a pretty clear win for it.


(who wishes Apple had chosen a more appealing moniker for the  

William Adams
senior graphic designer
Fry Communications

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