Want to know how fast your Mac is currently running? Don't want to shell out for expensive software in order to quickly see how your critical components are performing? Then you need xBench.

This venerable benchmarking tool is simple to use, and capable of providing you with a quick look at the key components in your Mac. Once downloaded and installed (drag the program shortcut into the Applications folder from its disk image), launch xBench and you'll see it performs tests in seven categories: CPU, Thread, Memory, Quartz Graphics, OpenGL, User Interface and Disk Speed.

All seven are selected by default, but you can untick any you don't want prior to selecting your target disk (if more than one is installed or attached) and clicking Start. Then just sit back to watch and wait while xBench tests your system.

After about a minute, xBench will deliver the results of its benchmarking. You can save this for future use or click Submit to upload the results to the xBench site for comparison with others. Note your results will be publicly available for others to view.

If you opt to save your benchmark results, they'll be saved to disk and you can reopen them alongside any future benchmarks you run from the File menu for comparison purposes.

Despite its age, xBench remains a popular choice among Mac enthusiasts, and is a good tool for all kinds of uses, including benchmarking the effects of enabling TRIM support on SSD drives. 

Verdict

A decent tool for what it does – lacks more sophisticated benchmarking tools, but xBench is still worth checking out if you're wondering how an upgrade has affected your Mac's performance.