Just three days ago the AMD Radeon Pro 5600M debuted in Apple's MacBook Pro, where it will live as an Apple-exclusive part. But, although full specifications were shared, no actual benchmarks were available to compare performance, and with the 5600M featuring HMB2 memory instead of GDDR6, the performance gains were expected to be great, but made it difficult to predict just how great.
Now, Max from Max Tech got his hands on a 16-inch MacBook Pro with the Radeon Pro 5600M inside, and has kindly shared his performance numbers.
* Benchmark data not confirmed by Tom's Hardware
As you can see, the 5600M offers up impressive performance gains. It outpaces every other MacBook Pro tested in Geekbench 5 by quite a significant margin — Max Tech shows roughly a 50% increase in performance across the board compared to the GDDR6-driven Radeon Pro 5500M.
Performance is also compared to the 5K iMac Pro's, where results are a little less predictable. Compared to the Vega 48 and 56, performance is competitive, nearing, and even surpassing the desktops depending on which test is run.
Of course, we can't give full credit to the HBM2 memory. HBM2 is more about delivering high bandwidth in a smaller space. It takes the memory off-board from the GPU, and embeds it onto an interposer. The 5600M has two stacks of 4GB each, delivering 384 GB/s of bandwidth in a compact space. That's the same bandwidth as six 1GB GDDR6 chips, but with more memory in about one fourth the area. HBM2 also uses less power, which frees up some much-needed thermal room for the GPU to utilize, as most GPUs on the 16-inch MacBook Pro's have TDP's in the realm of 50 watts.
But the real gains in performance come from the GPU itself. The 5500M has 1536 stream processors, and the 5300M only has 1280 stream processors. The 5600M meanwhile gets 2560 stream processors, though at lower clock speeds. If we're talking compute performance, the 5300M can do 3.2 TFLOPS, the 5500M offers 4.0 TFLOPS, and the 5600M delivers up to 5.3 TFLOPS. So, 33% more compute and double the bandwidth gives a typical 50% boost to graphics performance.
This added performance comes at a steep price, of course: $800 to go from the 5300M to the 5600M (or $600 to upgrade from the 5500M 8GB). That brings the total purchase price tag well above $3000. Still, if you care about graphics performance, that's less than 33% (or less) more money for 50% more performance. Considering this HBM2 equipped 5600M appears to be a custom design specifically for Apple, it's no surprise to see the premium memory solution get a price tag to match.