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Apple’s M3 Max

 

A post by Mark Gurman as seen on  Bloomberg gives an insight into Apple’s M3 Max MacBook Pro 40 GPU cores and up to 48GB of RAM . Apple Inc. has begun testing its highest-end next-generation laptop processor, setting the stage for the release of its most powerful MacBook Pro ever next year.

The new M3 Max chip includes 16 main processing cores and 40 graphics cores, according to test logs from a third-party Mac app developer that were seen by Bloomberg News.The processor is at the heart of a high-end MacBook Pro laptop — a model codenamed J514 — that’s expected to debut next year.

 

Last week in Power On: Apple sees emerging markets rescuing it from a sales slowdown in the US and China.Apple Inc. is still a few weeks away from debuting its next set of Macs with M2 chips, but that’s not stopping it from readying a follow-up processor: the M3.

The company has begun putting next-generation Macs with the M3 chips through their paces, testing them with third-party apps to ensure compatibility with its software ecosystem. It’s not the first time that we’ve gotten an early glimpse at new chips through this process. The company has previously revealed specifications of the upcoming 15-inch MacBook Air and Apple Silicon Mac Pro, as well as many of the prior M2-based machines.

The company needs fresh ways to entice customers back to the lineup, and the M3 could help with that. Apple’s Mac business suffered a 31% sales decline last quarter, missing analysts’ already-downbeat estimates.

 

So what does the M3 look like? Well, at least one version in testing has 12 CPU cores, 18 graphics cores and 36 gigabytes of memory. That’s according to data collected by an App Store developer and shared with Power On. The CPU, the chip’s main processor, is made up of six high-performance cores that handle the most intensive tasks and six efficiency cores that kick in for operations that need less power.

The chip itself in this particular test is running in a future high-end MacBook Pro with the upcoming macOS 14.0 and likely is the base-level version of what will be the M3 Pro coming next year.

Here’s how that would compare with the entry-level M1 Pro and M2 Pro, M3 Pro:

M1 Pro (released October 2021):

M2 Pro (January 2023):

M3 Pro (in testing):

M3 Max (in testing):

If the chip in testing is indeed the base-level M3 Pro, that would mean the increase in core counts compared with the M2 Pro would be similar to the jump from the M1 Pro to the M2 Pro. It would have two more power-efficient CPU cores and two more graphics cores. In this case, the amount of memory is also jumping by 4GB on the top-end configuration.

If the M3 Max were to get a similar gain as the M2 Max (compared with the M1 Max), that would mean Apple’s next high-end MacBook Pro chip could come with up to 14 CPU cores and more than a whopping 40 graphics cores. Speculating even further, that would mean the M3 Ultra chip could top out at 28 CPU cores and sport more than 80 graphics cores, up from a 64-core limit on the M1 Ultra.

I’m sure you’re wondering: How can Apple possibly fit that many cores on a chip? The answer is the 3-nanometer manufacturing process, which the company will be switching to with its M3 line. That approach allows for higher-density chips, meaning a designer can fit more cores into an already small processor.

My belief is the first Macs with M3 chips will begin arriving toward the end of the year or early next year. While the first 15-inch MacBook Air with an M2 chip is set to arrive this summer, the company is already working on M3-based iMacs, high-end and low-end MacBook Pros, and MacBook Airs, I’m told.

 

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