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Configuration As Tested
This page covers the configurations used for testing.
Mac OS X configuration
The Mac OS X install DVD that comes with the 2011 MacBook Pro installs a system with the 64-bit kernel enabled.
All machines tested the 64-bit kernel OS X 10.6.6. Small to moderate performance gains are possible by running in 64-bit kernel mode.
MBP Dual i7 = MacBook Pro 2-Core i7 2.66GHz, 8GB, OWC Mercury Pro Extreme 240GB
MBP Quad i7 = MacBook Pro 4-Core Core i7 2.3GHz, OWC Mercury Pro Extreme 240GB
Mac Pro = 3.33GHz 6-core Westmere, 24GB, OWC Mercury Pro RE 200GB SSD
Mac Pro = 3.33GHz 12-core Westmere, 48GB, OWC Mercury Pro RE 200GB SSD X 3
The 2010 MacBook Pro 2-core was also available at 2.8GHz, which is a 5.2% faster clock speed than the 2.66GHz model used for testing.
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All tests with 8GB memory unless otherwise noted.
Memory of 8GB is not standard (costs extra), but it is foolish to spend $2500 on a MacBook Pro (more when you count extras including AppleCare), then cripple it with 4GB, at least if you’re a Photoshop or Lightroom or photography user.