Rumors about Apple's next major release, the iPhone 15, are on everyone's lips. The truth is, it makes perfect sense; the September event traditionally garners the most attention in the Apple universe. However, there's another event, also in the fall, that could stand out above the rest this year.
An M3 Ultra that leaves the M2 far behind
This October, according to the rumours, we hope that Apple will unveil new Mac computers with new Apple Silicon Chips under the hood. As reported by Mark Gurman in the latest edition of his newsletter “power on,” the anticipated M3 Ultra is poised to become a benchmark in the world of chips.
The base model of the M3 Ultra represents a significant leap compared to its predecessor, the M2 Ultra. While the M2 Ultra featured a 24-core CPU, composed of 16 high-performance cores and eight high-efficiency cores, along with a 60-core GPU, the new M3 Ultra raises the bar with a 32-core CPU, consisting of 24 high-performance cores and the remaining efficiency cores, accompanied by a 64-core GPU.
On the other hand, in the higher range of Apple silicon chips, the top-spec M3 Ultra stands out with an 80-core GPU, maintaining the same CPU configuration as described earlier. In contrast, the highest-spec M2 Ultra lags behind with a 76-core GPU and also retains the same 24-core CPU configuration.
The most significant innovation lies in the increase in high-performance cores. These cores are designed to optimize high-demand tasks on devices, while efficiency cores handle everyday activities. In practical terms, this means that future Apple devices will be better equipped to handle resource-intensive tasks, such as video editing or graphic design, without sacrificing battery life or system efficiency.
Which computers are prepared for these chips
Now, what can we expect in terms of devices? The first batch of Mac computers with M3 chips is scheduled for October. This lineup includes a new 13-inch MacBook Air, a new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, and a 24-inch iMac.
However, the true breakthrough is expected in 2024 with the arrival of the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models equipped with M3 Pro and M3 Max chips. Further down the line, we may see refreshed versions of the Mac Pro and the Mac Studio, both powered by the powerful M3 Ultra we've been discussing. Gurman suggests that the M3 Ultra might only make its way to the Mac Studio and Mac Pro, but he adds “if Apple decides to continue producing them.”
The key point here is that with the level of power we are witnessing, the transition to 3nm chip manufacturing could result in enough energy efficiency that certain components in the higher-end range might no longer be necessary. One of the reasons for the existence of the Mac Studio, aside from extra ports and other minor changes, lies in the need for enhanced cooling capacity. The M3 chips could potentially reduce this need, resulting in designs more akin to the Mac mini.
The lingering question is, how far can Apple go? Just as with the Apple Watch X, if the M3 Ultra is just the beginning of the 3-nanometer era, what does the future hold? The 80-core GPU is undoubtedly an impressive advancement, but it's also a promise. A promise that Apple's chip technology seems to know no bounds, and in its constant pursuit of performance and power, it will continue to amaze and redefine market expectations.
Some of the links added in the article are part of affiliate campaigns and may represent benefits for Softonic.