Apple M4 and iPad Pro break performance records when doused in liquid nitrogen

Liquid nitrogen being poured on the back of an iPad Pro with M4 chip
(Image credit: The_Floating_Brothers (BiliBili))

If you happen to have a keg of liquid nitrogen around, you, too, can break single-core performance records with an M4-powered iPad Pro. However, for safety reasons, we don’t recommend that. 

As spotted by Notebook Check, a team in China used liquid nitrogen to cool the Apple M4 chip for some performance tests. 

The group, The Next_Floating_Brothers, posted their results on the Chinese platform, BiliBili, which is a combination of YouTube, Twitch and Crunchyroll for the Chinese market. 

As part of their testing, the Brothers cooled the back of the iPad Pro with liquid nitrogen. The nitrogen is excessive but it does have a boiling point of -320 degrees Fahrenheit. 

The super-thin, 5.1mm iPad Pro with 1 TB or 2 TB of storage features a full M4 chip but is not actively cooled. So, the Floating Brothers test does illustrate that Apple is losing some performance by not including a fan or other active cooling method. 

For comparison, without liquid nitrogen being poured on the back of an iPad Pro, our testing showed a Geekbench single-core result of nearly 3,700. That already bests tablets from Google, Samsung and Lenovo. And it makes one of the fastest chips on the market beating Intel’s Core Ultra 9 and AMD’s Ryzen 9 chips. 

iPad Pro M4 Geekbench test with liquid nitrogen cooling

(Image credit: Geekbench)

When cooled with liquid nitrogen, the M4 chip scored 4,001 points, a Geekbench record. On the Geekbench best list, the next highest score would be the Intel Core i9-13900KS, with only 3,110 points. Even Apple’s iPhone 15 Pro running the A17 chipset tops out at 2900.

Geekbench 6 tests raw performance and will give different scores for the single-core and multi-core performance. In the case of the M4, the liquid nitrogen scores from the Floating Brothers were actually at or just below the tests that we performed sans super-cooled liquid.

Our tests had a multi-core score of 14,512 points. The two tests that Floating Brothers submitted to Geekbench featured scores of 14,905 and 13,595. However, we understand that Geekbench 6 tests don’t last long enough to test throttling, which might affect multi-core performance up or down.

To retirate, this was on the top-of-the-line, fully specced iPad Pro. The 1TB and 2TB variants come with 16GB of RAM built-in and a full M4 chip with a 10-core GPU and 10-core CPU.

The smaller iPad Pros with 516GB or 256GB storage capacity have only 8GB of RAM and a 9-core GPU. Most people won’t notice the difference day to day.

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Scott Younker
West Coast Reporter

Scott Younker is the West Coast Reporter at Tom’s Guide. He covers all the lastest tech news. He’s been involved in tech since 2011 at various outlets and is on an ongoing hunt to build the easiest to use home media system. When not writing about the latest devices, you are more than welcome to discuss board games or disc golf with him.