Just How Fast Are Steam Games On The Mac?

Steam is now available on the Mac. Great news for people who only own a Mac, but what if you're like me, and own both? Which is faster?

Tom's Hardware is on the scene to find out, using both a Macbook Pro and a "Hackintosh" - a non-Apple computer modified to run the Mac's operating system - to test the speed of Valve's Portal running in both Windows 7 and Mac OSX 10.6.

Sounds fair to me! Rather than pitting a Mac against a gaming PC, where the specs aren't really comparable, the benchmark instead shows the differences made by running the same game on the same hardware, only under different operating systems.

And there are differences.

Just How Fast Are Steam Games On The Mac?

Basically, thanks to a combination of work-in-progress code for the Mac version of the game and the inability of Mac drivers to keep pace, the Windows tests on both computers came back with significantly better results, especially on the Macbook Pro.

Now, if you've only got a Mac, don't worry. It's not like Portal is unplayable, and as any PC user can attest, any glitches or performance problems with the Mac version of Portal (or with Steam itself) are usually fixed after a volley of updates from Valve.

But if you've got both systems - or are running both operating systems on the one computer - as of May 2010, Windows is the way to go.

Steam for Mac Benchmarks: Windows Is Much Faster [Gizmodo]