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How to Check Which CPU Your Mac Uses

The Apple logo.

The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the number-crunching brain of your Mac. Its characteristics determine how fast your Mac processes information. The type of CPU varies based on which model you have. Here’s how to quickly check which CPU is in your computer.

First, click the Apple menu at the upper left, and then click “About This Mac.”

Click the Apple menu at the upper left, and then click "About This Mac."

In the menu that appears, you’ll get a quick roundup of your Mac’s specifications, including the type of CPU it has next to “Processor.” In the image below, we see this iMac has a 3.5 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7 CPU.

In the "Overview" tab, the CPU is listed next to "Processor."

To get even more information on your Mac’s CPU, click “System Report.”

Click "System Report."

Click “Hardware” in the list on the left. The pane on the right will then display detailed information about your Mac’s processor, including all of the following:

  • The processor name and speed
  • The number of processors and cores
  • L2 cache size
  • L3 cache size
  • If hyper-threading is enabled

RELATED: CPU Basics: Multiple CPUs, Cores, and Hyper-Threading Explained

The "Hardware" CPU details.

When you’re done, just close “System Report.” You’ll know much more about your machine than you did before.

If your Mac has been a bit sluggish, there are several you can speed it up before shelling out for an upgrade. Knowledge is power!

RELATED: How to Speed Up Your Old Mac and Give It a New Life

Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a Staff Writer for How-To Geek. For over 14 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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