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Apple Silicon Macs
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Waragainstsleep
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Nov 11, 2020, 05:19 PM
 
Its been over a day and theres no thread discussing them post announcement. I feel like thats weird.

They look pretty good. Apple didn't make a huge deal about it, or maybe it was the lack of a live gasping audience, but the Air being faster than 98% of Intel laptops sold in the last year is pretty damn good. I'm disappointed they weren't a little more aggressive with their pricing. Just a little.
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reader50
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Nov 11, 2020, 07:02 PM
 
I'm not following Apple to proprietary CPUs. So the announcement didn't interest me much.

If Apple announced they were selling and/or licensing the new M chips, and that they're all socketed going forward, I'd get interested. But without that, the Mac is becoming a disposable phone. No upgrades available. (Internal) expandability is a red line for me.
     
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Nov 11, 2020, 07:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I'm not following Apple to proprietary CPUs. So the announcement didn't interest me much.
You don’t have to care about CPU architecture, core count, cache sizes and the like. You look at what comes out at the other end, and I don’t think you can be anything but excited. If Apple’s claims are anywhere remotely correct, which e. g. Anandtech thinks they will be (based on benchmarks of the A14, this will be a huge improvement for users. You don’t need to care what is in the new MacBook Air and 13” MacBook Pro, but do you want 15+-hour battery life? Oh yes! Do you want a GPU that is multiple times faster? At lower power. What about a fanless computer that is completely silent and has no moving parts apart from the keyboard? I think this is huge. Then there is instant on and other things.

I’m surprised anyone with an affinity for technology isn’t excited.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
If Apple announced they were selling and/or licensing the new M chips, and that they're all socketed going forward, I'd get interested. But without that, the Mac is becoming a disposable phone. No upgrades available. (Internal) expandability is a red line for me.
It’s been like that for a while. A quality x86-based Windows notebook like Microsoft’s Surface Book isn’t anymore repairable or upgradable than a MacBook. CPU architecture has nothing to do with it. Computers are becoming like cars: ever more reliable and ordinary people don’t need to and want to open them up. I think they are getting better.

Personally, I just changed my buying behavior like 6 years ago or so.

The interesting question is what will happen with the Mac Pro. But I reckon this is going to be one of the last machines to migrate to ARM.
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Nov 11, 2020, 08:12 PM
 
I plan on buying a Mac mini. Undecided whether base model or not. I only use PDF app, Word, Safari, chat apps, and email. My photo collection is quite large though.



I'm not worried about app compatibility unlike the OS 9 to OS X transition. At least the apps will look the same.

The interesting thing is that the same chip is being used in all 3 Macs including the MacBook Pro, which has 1 GPU core more (enabled).
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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 11, 2020, 09:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I'm not following Apple to proprietary CPUs. So the announcement didn't interest me much.

If Apple announced they were selling and/or licensing the new M chips, and that they're all socketed going forward, I'd get interested. But without that, the Mac is becoming a disposable phone. No upgrades available. (Internal) expandability is a red line for me.
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
You don’t have to care about CPU architecture. It’s been like that for a while. A quality x86-based Windows notebook like Microsoft’s Surface Book isn’t anymore repairable or upgradable than a MacBook. CPU architecture has nothing to do with it.
Actually with the late Intel models, the soldered RAM and SSDs was entirely a choice. With the M1 its a feature. Kindof. The RAM is now integrated into the CPU die. So is the SSD controller. there appears to be significant performance benefits from doing things this way. The same was never really true of the Intel Macs.
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Nov 11, 2020, 10:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Actually with the late Intel models, the soldered RAM and SSDs was entirely a choice.
It's a choice made by more and more notebook makers, not just Apple. Apple may have initiated the trend, but the industry has largely followed it (except for some niches, of course). Arguably the best PC notebooks (e. g. the Surface Book) are built as hostile to upgrading and repairs as most of Apple's products are nowadays. I think they have been going overboard with pentalobe screws and the like, but unless there is a right to repair, I don't think anything will change.
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
With the M1 its a feature. Kindof. The RAM is now integrated into the CPU die. So is the SSD controller. there appears to be significant performance benefits from doing things this way. The same was never really true of the Intel Macs.
But IMHO that's just because Intel isn't offering that. Just have a look at the architecture of the PS5 and the latest XBox, and you see tons of similarities: shared memory between CPU and GPU, balanced performance characteristics between CPU and GPU tailored to the application, etc. It is no coincidence that this is made by AMD.

The mainboards of computers have gotten more and more sparse over the years, but at a certain point Intel was the limiting factor. Remember when you needed a sound card? Or an IDE/SCSI controller card? More integration has benefits away from performance, too.
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Nov 12, 2020, 02:14 AM
 
I was just going to bitch about it because I’m stuck with Adobe’s timetable.
     
Doc HM
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Nov 12, 2020, 05:43 AM
 
Not Apple Silicon but I with a client yesterday who (because average users really don't read the tech press) just pushed the button on a 2020 spec 27in iMac. Since he was transitioning from a 2006 white polycarbonate 20in machine he was looking forward to a substantial improvement in speed. Obviously. So what went wrong?
Well, first off he probably should have waited, having hung on since 2006 I guess a few more months wouldn't have hurt but now he's got end of era tech instead of next era tech. Ah well.
Also, and because he's non tech he listened to his family who said "Just get the cheapest one, whatever it's going to be loads better than your old one". So he spent £1800 on the base spec 256GB (no upgrade option on the website for this model), to replace the 2006 machine with the nearly full 1TB machine. Can you see what's happened here?
Never mind. It's sub-optimal but surely we can just pop in a bigger drive, or get apple to do it. Er, nope. A desktop class machine for use in creative industries with only 256GB of non upgradable flash storage.
We did find a solution which of course involved iCloud so his photo library is in the cloud with optimisation for storage, his doc and desktop are in the cloud and his music is... still on the old iMac. Which means despite the new super super quick integral flash storage nearly all his opening and closing of stuff and looking at photos is actually slower on the new iMac than the old one. Nice!
Of course "some stuff" will end up cached to the Ssd and open quick but his day to day experience of the new machine will be, well, shit.
I can just about go with the need to integrate with laptops (just) but on an iMac? That's just madness. Even you spec up to 1TB (you can only do this on the mid and top tier machines), given the life span of these machines and the typical user that's going to become an issue again at some point.
And of course in the end he did cook his own goose by buying the iMac then going away for 3 weeks leaving in its box to run out Apple's 14 day return window. A quick check with Apple confirmed that they were unwilling to extend this. They suggested using iCloud (well duh!) or er, buying another iMac. I suspect this will be this customers last Apple product.
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Nov 12, 2020, 08:45 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Actually with the late Intel models, the soldered RAM and SSDs was entirely a choice. With the M1 its a feature. Kindof. The RAM is now integrated into the CPU die. So is the SSD controller. there appears to be significant performance benefits from doing things this way. The same was never really true of the Intel Macs.
The SSD controller moved into the T-chips a few years ago, so the storage itself would have been completely custom and proprietary to Apple. I doubt that keeping an after-market option alive would have been worth the compromises involved in slotting the chips.
     
reader50
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Nov 12, 2020, 01:54 PM
 
@Doc, is the client willing to add an external drive? 2TB SSDs are a lot less than they used to be, and even a large external HD would be a big speed improvement over cloud storage.
     
mindwaves
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Nov 13, 2020, 03:22 AM
 
Kind of related but updated to Big Sur and so far like the interface changes. It actually fixed the Calendar application which can now scroll now!

Love the new iOS esque widgets.
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Doc HM
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Nov 13, 2020, 06:58 AM
 
Big Sur mail is poop. There's no visual differentiation between the tool bars etc part from the thin line that vanishes when you mouse away, AND the tools needed to manage your mail are now way over on the right above the actual mail making it much harder to do tasks. Also the returned bottom preview layout sucks really a very large amount.
Still the round corners are nice
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Nov 13, 2020, 07:01 AM
 
The new interface is generally very tidy and the colours/icons etc all look very well engineered. apart from, and I am aware that this is probably the smallest niggle ever, the notifications icon in system prefs, ooft! Who's job was that one?
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Nov 14, 2020, 12:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
Kind of related but updated to Big Sur and so far like the interface changes. It actually fixed the Calendar application which can now scroll now!

Love the new iOS esque widgets.
I generally like the design, but I have three gripes:
(1) Whatever you want to call the replacement of sheets is objectively worse. Sheets were amazing, because they were clearly visually attached to a window. The new design is just not as good.
(2) The “grabbable area” of a window title bar is smaller and less predictable. I am having trouble shuffling browser windows around, because I sometimes wouldn't grab the window even though I have “depressed” the “mouse” button.
(3) The icon next to a document's name is hidden by default. I drag-and-drop documents via the document icon a lot.

There is also another thing I noticed: the design seems too bright if that makes any sense. My eyes feel a bit strained when I look at the windows for too long (in day mode).
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ghporter
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Nov 14, 2020, 07:18 PM
 
So is the M1 a (high end) SOC device, or is it more a “more highly integrated” CPU?

With RAM and SSD management on the same die as the processor, I can see a lot of streamlining of functions, making the computer much faster. But what’s the real impact, particularly with Big Sur - which I’m guessing is optimized for this chip, but may also have a LOT more “stuff” that could actually need a much faster CPU/interface system to still seem snappy.

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OreoCookie
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Nov 15, 2020, 02:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
So is the M1 a (high end) SOC device, or is it more a “more highly integrated” CPU?
Apple calls it a SoC, but the distinction is getting increasingly blurry. SoC in the past meant low performance, but this is evidently no longer the case. Similarly, in the past “unified memory architecture” (where CPU and GPU share memory) was a negative, because it mean low-performance graphics. Nowadays, though, Sony's new Playstation 5 and Microsoft's new XBox (whatever-the-suffix-may-be) both use “shared memory” and have very, very good performance.

Historically, though, the trend towards putting more and more things on chip and on die is unmistakable. Many moons ago the memory controller was an external piece of silicon.

The other interesting trend is the use of chiplets, which AMD currently uses to great effect to massacre Intel. They mass produce small CPU core chiplets, which are (essentially) identical for many of their products and separately, different IO chips. This way they can produce a 6-core CPU with the same tech as a 64-core CPU. If Apple can license that tech, that'd open the door for massively powerful Macs.
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
With RAM and SSD management on the same die as the processor, I can see a lot of streamlining of functions, making the computer much faster. But what’s the real impact, particularly with Big Sur - which I’m guessing is optimized for this chip, but may also have a LOT more “stuff” that could actually need a much faster CPU/interface system to still seem snappy.
If you want to see Apple's values and where it thinks the future lies, look at the die area of the different bits and pieces. Apple needn't have included such a big neural engine if it believed that adding two more CPU cores would increase real-world performance more. Or they could have added more GPU cores, etc.
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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 15, 2020, 08:44 AM
 
The M1 is clearly a very close relative of the A12X/Z. What do we think Apple will do for the iMacs and 16" MBPs? Same chip for both? More CPU cores seems probable. I guess they'll need to shoehorn some more RAM in there too.
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Nov 15, 2020, 09:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
The M1 is clearly a very close relative of the A12X/Z. What do we think Apple will do for the iMacs and 16" MBPs? Same chip for both? More CPU cores seems probable. I guess they'll need to shoehorn some more RAM in there too.
It seems to me that Apple could have called the M1 the A14X and it might have looked exactly the same. I think for the 16” MacBook Pro and the iMacs you need support for more RAM and more cores. I have seen rumors of a 8+4-core model, which seems reasonable to me. The other point is graphics: you’d probably want significantly more graphics horsepower than what the M1 has. Also, I think Apple could put the chip for the 16” also in the Mac mini and the 13”.

I think Apple strategy will be to introduce 2 more chips, perhaps with different variants (where e. g. a CPU core or a GPU block is a dud): one for the 16” MacBook Pro, iMacs, another for the Mac Pro and the iMac Pro.
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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 15, 2020, 08:42 PM
 
I don't see them renewing the iMac Pro to be honest.
The other interesting thing about the three M1 Macs is they all have the old chassis. I really expected them change things up to signify the shift and make things feel more different. The Mac Mini enclosure for sure seems like it doesn't need to be the size it is any more. The 13" MBP can sort of justify it by the battery but even then you wonder if it really needs that fan given the extra room in the case over the MBA. Its still plausible Apple might merge the two. Then anyone wanting really crazy battery life can do like they do on an iPhone and get a protective case with a battery built in for their MacBook/Air.

The Mac Pro is fascinating on a number of levels. Thats the one case I expect them to keep but what kind of chips would they have to build to justify the size and the cooling now?
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Nov 15, 2020, 08:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I generally like the design, but I have three gripes:
(1) Whatever you want to call the replacement of sheets is objectively worse. Sheets were amazing, because they were clearly visually attached to a window. The new design is just not as good.
Not sure if I am like the new sheets replacement, but they are more jarring. I never really liked the sheets, because the animation of it was just too slow, no matter what Mac you had. I wish it would just appear or animate 2x as fast.
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Nov 15, 2020, 08:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Its still plausible Apple might merge the two.
I hope they don’t. I want a “cheap”, headless Mac. For HTPCs, and render nodes.
     
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Nov 15, 2020, 10:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
It seems to me that Apple could have called the M1 the A14X and it might have looked exactly the same. I think for the 16” MacBook Pro and the iMacs you need support for more RAM and more cores. I have seen rumors of a 8+4-core model, which seems reasonable to me. The other point is graphics: you’d probably want significantly more graphics horsepower than what the M1 has. Also, I think Apple could put the chip for the 16” also in the Mac mini and the 13”.

I think Apple strategy will be to introduce 2 more chips, perhaps with different variants (where e. g. a CPU core or a GPU block is a dud): one for the 16” MacBook Pro, iMacs, another for the Mac Pro and the iMac Pro.
I am hoping for discrete graphics, but I’ll thinking that with the tile based rendering ONLY unlikely. Maybe some FPGA wizardry like the afterburner?
     
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Nov 15, 2020, 10:59 PM
 
When Apple made the jump to Intel, they also didn't initially change the chassis design. Kind of weird, but ok.

Integrating the RAM with the CPU/SoC may be good, but will forever mean non-upgradable Macs (unless the CPU is upgradable, but highly unlikely). However, I find it difficult for Apple to make 2 M1 chips, one with 8 GB of RAM and another with 16GB. It is possible to make both with 16GB and just software disable 8GB on the cheaper models?
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Nov 15, 2020, 11:15 PM
 
Well they’re disabling a gpu core so maybe? Binning?
     
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Nov 16, 2020, 12:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by Brien View Post
I am hoping for discrete graphics, but I’ll thinking that with the tile based rendering ONLY unlikely. Maybe some FPGA wizardry like the afterburner?
I expect that Apple’s Mac Pro and perhaps the iMac Pro will have discrete graphics cards. However, if you say discrete and mean fast, I think this is no longer correct and up-to-date. Integrated graphics can be just as fast as discrete graphics, Sony’s and Microsoft’s new consoles are clear evidence of that, and you are only limited by total power consumption and die area (= price).

GPU performance is by-and-large a question about power: how much power do you want to dedicate to the GPU. And if you burn 300 W with a top-of-the-line discrete card, you get much more performance than a 30 W mobile GPU, no matter whether it is discrete or “integrated”.

Having shared memory comes with huge advantages, provided that memory bandwidth is sufficiently large. Memory controllers can burn power, though, too.
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
When Apple made the jump to Intel, they also didn't initially change the chassis design. Kind of weird, but ok.
I think this is smart from a product and marketing move, like car manufacturers putting newly developed engines into cars for the mid-cycle facelift. This way you can build on established technology for half the product. And in this case, to unsuspecting customers “everything looks the same”. Smart.
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
Integrating the RAM with the CPU/SoC may be good, but will forever mean non-upgradable Macs (unless the CPU is upgradable, but highly unlikely). However, I find it difficult for Apple to make 2 M1 chips, one with 8 GB of RAM and another with 16GB. It is possible to make both with 16GB and just software disable 8GB on the cheaper models?
The memory modules are on the chip module, but are separate chips. I don’t think they will disable half the memory, though.
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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 16, 2020, 05:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I hope they don’t. I want a “cheap”, headless Mac. For HTPCs, and render nodes.
I meant the MacBook Air and 13" MBP would merge. I still think there is a place for the Mini.

Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
In this case, to unsuspecting customers “everything looks the same"
I feel like its a double-edged sword. given the massive performance advantages, you want your customers to know its different to the old version. And they likely want any witnesses to know its the latest thing too.

I can only surmise that Apple is releasing these "stealth" models so they can transition the software base before they go for it with even better, mature CPU designs and some edgier cosmetic choices.


Its nitpicky I know but the Intel models did change a bit. The Mac Pro added a drive slot and the PSU moved from the bottom to the top. iMac and MacBook Pro got cameras added and a little slimmer. MacBook was quite a different beast from the iBook. The Mini was the only one that stayed as close as these ones have.
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Nov 16, 2020, 09:13 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I meant the MacBook Air and 13" MBP would merge. I still think there is a place for the Mini.
I have seen a shot of the innards of a new Mac mini and it is comical how much empty space there is. You just gotta think that this won't last long. Apple could either shrink the Mac mini to size or have it pack more of a punch in some model.
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Its nitpicky I know but the Intel models did change a bit. The Mac Pro added a drive slot and the PSU moved from the bottom to the top. iMac and MacBook Pro got cameras added and a little slimmer. MacBook was quite a different beast from the iBook. The Mini was the only one that stayed as close as these ones have.
You are right, a Mac geek like us could distinguish a PowerBook G4 Aluminum from a first-gen MacBook Pro. (I upgraded from one to the other.) Most people, though, could not. Or at least you'd be forgiven in confusing the change in ports with “just another update.” Ditto for PowerMac G5 and Mac Pro, me thinks. But I take your point.

I am a bit bummed that Apple stuck to the MacBook (Pro) moniker. I never loved that as much as I loved PowerBook and iBook.
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Nov 16, 2020, 12:18 PM
 
I imagine we will see an ultralight 12 inch MacBook Air at some point
     
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Nov 16, 2020, 05:20 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I am a bit bummed that Apple stuck to the MacBook (Pro) moniker. I never loved that as much as I loved PowerBook and iBook.
Yeah, its a clunkier name than PowerBook. It does however make instant sense to even the daftest of consumers.
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Nov 17, 2020, 06:28 AM
 
Lowest-end MacBook Pro with 8 GB RAM vs. iMac Pro with Vega 56 and 128 GB RAM:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads...-chip.2268919/

Exporting H.264 Sony 10 bit 422 footage with just one rec709 lut takes:

- 11 minutes and 30 seconds on his iMac Pro with Vega 56 and 128gigs of ram.
- 10 minutes and 20 seconds on the new MacBook Pro with 8gigs of ram.


30 seconds long H.265 canon 10-bit 422 footage at 100fps takes

- 80 seconds on iMac Pro
- 45 seconds on new MacBook Pro with ONLY 8 GIGS OF RAM


10bit 422 canon h265 8k ipb footage for 30 seconds with one rec709lut.

- 2 min and 47 sec on his iMac Pro vs
- 62 seconds on his MacBook Pro.
     
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Nov 17, 2020, 08:00 PM
 
[set curmudgeon_mode=1]
     
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Nov 17, 2020, 09:38 PM
 
Damn.....I was so happy with my 2018 i5 mini.......
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Nov 17, 2020, 10:26 PM
 
All reviewers seem to LOVE the M1 powered Macs. Fast speed and amazing better life and app compatibility. Win, win, win.
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Nov 17, 2020, 10:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
All reviewers seem to LOVE the M1 powered Macs. Fast speed and amazing better life and app compatibility. Win, win, win.
… except for Linus who is a bit of a negative nelly.
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Nov 20, 2020, 06:33 AM
 
I'm starting to think these first generation AS Macs are intended just to inspire developers to transition their software and to demonstrate how good Apple Silicon is. I think Apple still has ideas about some more diverse and specialist models of Macs. Just the fact they haven't changed much in any of these first three Macs says they won't be around all that long. I was thinking that the MBP16 and iMac would get an M1X chip and perhaps they still will but I'm now wondering if they might get the same M1 but with some extra bolt-ons to facilitate their use for either video or CAD or audio or whatever Apple thinks people will want them for. Maybe something thats extra fast at compiling code?

What other specialist Macs/options do we think Apple might build?
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Nov 20, 2020, 06:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
What other specialist Macs/options do we think Apple might build?
None. Other than the Mac Pro which is an oddity in the line, Apple is a general consumer computing company now. Sure their stuff can be configured to offer enough power for most creative professionals etc but any ability in specialist areas is just going to be a result of overall performance being good enough.

The iMac Pro is a dead end and the Pro itself took nearly a decade to arrive and hasn't set the world alight.

Even looking back to the very start I'm not sure Jobs ever had a vision of Apple being a specialist in any particular field, he just wanted everyone to have a Mac, the fact that creative pro's etc adopted it was entirely accidental (well related to software being developed at any rate).
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Nov 20, 2020, 11:01 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
II was thinking that the MBP16 and iMac would get an M1X chip and perhaps they still will but I'm now wondering if they might get the same M1 but with some extra bolt-ons to facilitate their use for either video or CAD or audio or whatever Apple thinks people will want them for.
I don't think they will put the M1 in the 16" Pro.
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
What other specialist Macs/options do we think Apple might build?
I reckon they will end up with three families:

M1 family: MacBook Air, 13" MacBook Pro:
M1X family: 8+4 cores, more GPU, perhaps as a chiplet or equivalent. That'll be used in the 16" MacBook Pro and the iMac. Perhaps Apple will also put it in a higher-specced 13" MacBook Pro and a high-end Mac mini.
M1X Pro: This is for the iMac Pro and the Mac Pro. Expect a lot more cores, support for ECC RAM, many PCIe lanes, and the like.
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Nov 20, 2020, 07:11 PM
 
I ordered one. My first "new" personal Mac in 9 years.

An Air with 16GB RAM and 1TB Hard Drive. Very excited... 2-3 weeks for delivery though... boo...

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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 20, 2020, 08:51 PM
 
When I say specialist, I'm thinking some of the modular parts of the chips being beefed up or maybe the addition of extra silicon like the afterburner card.

Its hard to imagine that the Mac Pro chips will be that close to the M1 since you can't fit 1.5TB of RAM onto a single die with a stack of CPU cores. It would be the size of a dinner plate.
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Nov 20, 2020, 10:11 PM
 
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Nov 20, 2020, 10:31 PM
 
Anandtech reviewed the M1 in its most potent form, inside the Mac Mini. The TL;DR is encapsulated in the last line: “Overall, Apple hit it out of the park with the M1.”

Basically, the only CPU that can keep up with it in single-core performance is AMD’s Zen 3 — but at over 6x the power consumption. GPU performance is likewise great, handily beating the fastest discrete GPU in the 15” MacBook Pro. You need a current-gen discrete laptop GPU to get past it. But needless to say, the M1 does all that on a fraction of the power budget.

Anandtech did not test the Neural Engine or any other special function hardware, which undoubtedly will accelerate real-life workloads for us.

We should keep in mind that the M1 is going to be Apple’s slowest ARM-based CPU and GPU. One thing I have heard on The Talk Show was that switching resolutions was instantaneous. That’s one thing which annoys me: whenever I connect my external display at work, windows keep jumping around for about 5-10 seconds.

So yeah, the M1 seems to be a home run.
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Nov 21, 2020, 01:00 AM
 
I doubt that Apple is going the chiplet route in the first generation. Their entire spiel is that unified memory architecture and how all of the main segments can access it at high bandwidth and low latency. They can easily double the Firestorm cores and the GPU while staying a reasonable size. They may also opt to improve yields by using harvested chips in some models, e.g. 6 active cores, in the same way that A12X is a harvested A12Z.

Going forward, we may all be going chiplet, but I don’t think Apple will go there in their first ARMacs.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 21, 2020, 01:01 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
When I say specialist, I'm thinking some of the modular parts of the chips being beefed up or maybe the addition of extra silicon like the afterburner card.
Modularity comes in many different ways. AMD achieves this by having CPU chiplets connect to an IO die. In principle, you could connect one or more GPU chiplets to the IO chiplet, too. This would take care of everything and keep costs in check. So you could make different versions of a product by simply connecting a different number of CPU and GPU chiplets. You could also opt for different RAM connectivity options.

If Apple wanted to have performance that rivaled and bested discrete GPUs in the class of product it aims for, I am doubtful it can do that by putting everything on one die. So that'd be a great way out. IMHO the only big obstacle I see to that is whether Apple has legal access to these technologies.
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Its hard to imagine that the Mac Pro chips will be that close to the M1 since you can't fit 1.5TB of RAM onto a single die with a stack of CPU cores. It would be the size of a dinner plate.
True, but I don't think you'd have to put everything on die, especially of power consumption is of no (big) concern.
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Nov 21, 2020, 02:34 AM
 
I was initially undecided between 8 or 16 GB of RAM, but upon watching the videos of people editing videos on their eight GB Macs with no issues, I’ve decided to save the $200 and order a 8GB model. I only do Word and PDF and browsing. Going to order the 512 GB storage model though.
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Nov 23, 2020, 09:32 AM
 
Now I'm considering replacing my old Mac Pro. If not with Apple Silicon, then maybe with a previous-gen i7 Mini that someone ditched for the new AS. Though it looks like those are still going for $1100+ on eBay, which would be enough to get a nice M1 Mini with 16GB and 512GB.

The only holdup would be that my Pro spends probably 70% the time booted in Windows for gaming. It'd be a shame to lose that.
     
Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 23, 2020, 04:30 PM
 
Do you have to dump the Pro if you get the Mini?
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Nov 23, 2020, 07:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
Now I'm considering replacing my old Mac Pro. If not with Apple Silicon, then maybe with a previous-gen i7 Mini that someone ditched for the new AS. Though it looks like those are still going for $1100+ on eBay, which would be enough to get a nice M1 Mini with 16GB and 512GB.
IMHO getting a used Mac Mini at those prices would be a giant waste of money. For that money you could get a new Mac mini that’d be faster in all circumstances, I reckon. And if you are not 100 % convinced that a Mac mini can replace your Mac Pro (e. g. because you need more RAM), just wait a little longer. I don’t think it is out of the question that once Apple releases the M1X or whatever the beefier sibling of the M1 will be called that there’ll be a Mac mini released with it.
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
The only holdup would be that my Pro spends probably 70% the time booted in Windows for gaming. It'd be a shame to lose that.
True dat. Trade-offs.
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Waragainstsleep  (op)
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Nov 24, 2020, 07:55 AM
 
I just watched a review using a Mac Mini with Logic Pro and it ran a 195 channel project with sample size at 188 I think and over 1000 plugins and it dealt with it. With 8GB RAM.
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Nov 24, 2020, 08:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I just watched a review using a Mac Mini with Logic Pro and it ran a 195 channel project with sample size at 188 I think and over 1000 plugins and it dealt with it. With 8GB RAM.
This is that video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIAUiFoYPtQ

Insane. And that is the lowest-end chip Apple is ever going to put in a Mac.

When our stuff is eventually ported to Apple Silicon a year or two from now, we'll have a whole new world to play in.
     
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Nov 24, 2020, 08:12 AM
 
For someone who doesn’t do audio, can you put that in perspective for us? I’ve seen the video and I had the impression they were gobsmacked. But I am lacking a point of reference.
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