M1 Pro and M1 Max: the most powerful chips Apple has built

Apple has announced two new chips for their Mac computer systems, the M1 Pro and M1 Max. The company claims these are the most powerful chips they have ever created.

M1 Pro

The M1 Pro has a 10-core CPU and is up to 70 percent faster than the previous M1 chip. In addition, it offers a GPU with up to 16 cores that are up to two times faster than the M1. Compared to the latest 8-core PC chips, Apple quotes up to 1.7 times higher CPU performance and seven times faster GPU performance. These speed boosts are all achieved while using up to 70 percent less power. The chip also supports up to 32 GB of unified memory.

M1 Max

The M1 Max has the same 10-core CPU as the M1 Pro. However, it adds a powerful 32-core GPU to deliver a graphics performance up to four times more than the M1. The chip achieves these impressive GPU figures while using up to 40 percent less power than similar high-end GPUs in the largest PC laptops. The M1 Max also supports up to 64 GB of unified memory.

ProRes acceleration

The M1 Pro and M1 Max chips are ideal for video. Both chips include an Apple-designed media engine to accelerate video processing while maximizing battery life. In addition, dedicated acceleration for the ProRes video codec allows the playback of multiple streams of 4K and 8K video. The M1 Max has two ProRes accelerators enabling it to transcode ProRes up to ten times faster than a previous generation MacBook Pro, as seen in the latest MacBook Pro.

Apple M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max chips
Image courtesy: Apple

Thunderbolt 4

Other advanced technologies with these new chips include a new display engine capable of driving multiple external displays. There is also an additional integrated Thunderbolt 4 controller for more input/output bandwidth.  

macOS Monterey

Apple built the Monterey version of the macOS to take advantage of the M1 Pro and M1 Max. As such, it looks to deliver high performance and great battery life with the new chips.

The new 16-inch MacBook Pro laptops powered by the M1 Pro and M1 Max are available to order now.

Pete Tomkies
Pete Tomkies
Pete Tomkies is a freelance cinematographer and camera operator from Manchester, UK. He also produces and directs short films as Duck66 Films. Pete's latest short Once Bitten... won 15 awards and was selected for 105 film festivals around the world.

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