Apple M1X vs M2 chip: What we know so far — and what it means for new MacBooks

Here’s Everything We Know About the Next Generation of Apple Silicone

It’s only been half a year since we met the Apple M1 chip, the company’s first product to design its own Mac chipset, and we can confidently say it’s been a huge success. It’s so good, in fact, that we awarded M1 the Breakthrough Award at our Toms Guide Awards for 2021.

The M1 chip has delivered a significant performance and power efficiency boost to every Apple product, including the MacBook Pro with the M1, the MacBook Air with the M1, and the Mac Mini with the M1. The M1 chip has no trouble running iOS and iPadOS apps natively, tying Apple’s Mac and mobile ecosystem more tightly than ever.

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Now we’re hearing a lot of rumors about what’s next for Apple Silicon. The earliest rumors we heard pointed to an obvious successor called the M2 chip, but over the past few months we’ve also heard enough about a potential M1 follow-up called the M1X that we now believe Apple will be able to use two new chips. Working on SoCs. A beefier version of the M1 chip, with more cores and more RAM, is expected to debut in the new 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro models later this year, and an entirely new chip called the M2 Expected to debut in the new MacBook. Aired in the first half of 2022.

So what is likely to be the difference, and what does it mean for you? Read on for a quick rundown of what we know so far about the long-running M1X and M2 chips.

Apple M1X chip: what we know so far

  • Expected to power the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro 2021
  • The M1X features 10 CPU cores, compared to 8 cores for the M1X
  • GPU can be 16-core or 32-core (up from 8-core) and up to 64GB of RAM

Apple has gotten a little confused trying and parsing everything we’ve been hearing about the future of silicon, as we’ve heard that future Macs will include more powerful chips branded either M1X or M2. However, earlier this year a MacBook Pro 2021 leaked from an iOS developer Delandkat (whose predictions of Apple on Twitter have been proven correct in the past) This helps to clarify things by suggesting that there are actually two chips in development: the M1 successor M2, and an improved version of the M1 known as the M1X. goes.

“The M1X is an extension of the M1 that will include more Thunderbolt channels, CPU cores, GPU cores, multiple external monitor support, and greater power draw,” claims Dylandkt. He predicts that these M1X chips will appear in the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, with an expected release date of late 2021. “These devices will feature a 1080p webcam, SD card reader, three Thunderbolt USB C ports, and both an updated MagSafe port and an HDMI port.”

Around the same time, Bloomberg published a report suggesting that the next iteration of Apple Silicon would come with 10 CPU cores, a marked improvement over the octa-core CPUs on the current M1 chip. The same Bloomberg report also suggested that the next generation of Apple Silicon could support up to 64GB of RAM and sport a GPU as large as 16-core or 32-core, which was an incredible improvement over the M1 chip’s K8. Looks like GB RAM and Octa-core GPU.

While it’s hard to believe that a new M1X chip from Apple could deliver a 32-core GPU and 64GB of RAM, it’s certainly possible. What’s more believable is the suggestion that Apple this year replace the M1X chips (or however Apple ends up branding a better M1) with slightly more Thunderbolt channels, CPU cores, and GPU cores on the refreshed 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros. will issue.

If that turns out to be true, what this means for the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros (or any other Mac that gets the M1X injection) is simple: a significant increase in performance and battery life, as well as The ability to natively run iOS and iPadOS apps. The return of MagSafe charging, the addition of an HDMI port, and (if the rumors turn out to be true) slimmer bezels will all be the icing on the cake.

Apple M2 chip: what we heard

  • Expected to launch alongside the new MacBook Air in 2022
  • Rumored to be manufactured on a 4nm process (versus 5nm for the M1)
  • Can have up to 9-10 GPU cores but only 8 CPU cores

As mentioned above, we’ve heard of both the M1X chip and the M2-branded M1 successor, alternatively. For example, back in April Nikkei Asia reportedly heard from sources that a new chipset called the M2 had entered production, which (if true) would mean that those chips would be available for Apple products by the end of this year. I will be ready to ship.

Now, it’s possible that this leak is correct and refers to the aforementioned improved M1X chips, which we expect to see in the long-rumored 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro refreshes, as they are still on the way for 2021. Hoping to start eventually. However, we’ve heard enough confirmed leaks and rumors to believe that there is a separate M2 chip, and it is quite different from the M1X mentioned above.

For starters, the M2 chip is rumored to be built on a 4-nanometer fabrication node instead of the 5nm process used for the M1. If true, this means better performance and efficiency than M1, as there are more transistors per square nanometer.

We’ve also seen reports from both Bloomberg and Dylandkat that Apple is on track to release a new MacBook Air sporting the M2 chip in early 2022. According to DelandkatOf course, the M2 chip could be a next-gen SoC (System on a Chip), built from the same foundation as the A15, which reportedly went into production in May before its rumored debut in the iPhone 13 later this year. had entered.

These renders by Devam Jangra give us an idea of ​​what the new M2-powered MacBook Air with thinner bezels and an iMac-like array of color options could look like

And while you might assume that a chip called the M2 would be better in every way than the one branded M1X, rumors suggest that the M2 may actually be a little less beefy. One of Bloomberg’s latest reports The claim is that Apple will ship the new MacBook Air in a bunch of new colors early next year, each with an M2 chip with 9-10 GPU cores but just 8 CPU cores. While these chips will still be faster and more performant than the current M1, there’s good reason to suspect that they’ll be slightly less fast than the M1X chips we expect to see later this year with the new 14- inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros.

Apple M1X vs M2 Chip: Outlook

Leaks and rumors over the past six months have painted a blurry, shifting picture of what to expect from the next generation of Apple silicon. Ongoing chip shortages have likely thrown a wrench in Apple’s production pipeline, making it even more difficult to predict when and what hardware the company will release next.

Still, it’s safe to assume that we’ll see a more powerful version of the M1 chip later this year or early next year. Recent leaks suggesting we’ll see an M1X chipset in the new MacBook Pro later this year, with the M2 chip appearing in the new MacBook Air in 2022, seems pretty reliable. But even if the people of Cupertino change things up, one thing is for sure: Apple’s silicon is a significant improvement over the Intel-based chipset that’s been powering Macs for years, and we can’t wait to see what’s next. What can .

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