Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
59,283
23,259


We've heard Apple's overview of the the M1 Pro and M1 Max Apple silicon chips and we've seen benchmarks of the CPU and GPUs, but AnandTech has done a technical deep dive into the capabilities of the new chips that's well worth reading for those who are interested in learning more.

m1-pro-vs-max-feature.jpg

According to AnandTech, the M1 Pro is a new implementation of the M1 chip, but designed "from the ground up" to offer more performance. AnandTech says that this is the more interesting of the two chip designs because it offers "mostly everything that power users will deem generationally important in terms of upgrades."
The CPU cores clock up to 3228MHz peak, however vary in frequency depending on how many cores are active within a cluster, clocking down to 3132 at 2, and 3036 MHz at 3 and 4 cores active. I say "per cluster", because the 8 performance cores in the M1 Pro and M1 Max are indeed consisting of two 4-core clusters, both with their own 12MB L2 caches, and each being able to clock their CPUs independently from each other, so it's actually possible to have four active cores in one cluster at 3036MHz and one active core in the other cluster running at 3.23GHz.
The higher-end M1 Max is identical to the M1 Pro, with the exception of the GPU and the media encoders.
The GPU and memory interfaces of the chip are by far the most differentiated aspects of the chip, instead of a 16-core GPU, Apple doubles things up to a 32-core unit. On the M1 Max which we tested for today, the GPU is running at up to 1296MHz - quite fast for what we consider mobile IP, but still significantly slower than what we've seen from the conventional PC and console space where GPUs now can run up to around 2.5GHz.
AnandTech's M1 Pro and M1 Max overview goes into much more depth about the unified memory, the power behavior, and CPU and GPU performance. All in all, AnandTech says that these new chips "truly feel like SoCs that have been made with power users in mind," and performance metrics have been boosted "in all vectors."
The chips here aren't only able to outclass any competitor laptop design, but also competes against the best desktop systems out there, you'd have to bring out server-class hardware to get ahead of the M1 Max – it's just generally absurd.
The site was expecting significant boosts in performance, but "didn't expect some of the monstrous increases that the new chips are able to achieve." The chips outclass any competing laptop design, and also rival the best desktop systems available.

Article Link: AnandTech's Deep Dive Into M1 Pro and M1 Max Highlights Performance and Efficiency Improvements
 
Last edited:

huge_apple_fangirl

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2019
704
1,147
The memory advancements are really cool. But the graphics performance in games is kind of disappointing. I don't think they really talked about GPU compute either? On the whole, great SoCs, but I feel like M1 was more impressive overall, especially in power efficiency.
 

KPOM

macrumors P6
Oct 23, 2010
17,427
6,842
The memory advancements are really cool. But the graphics performance in games is kind of disappointing. I don't think they really talked about GPU compute either? On the whole, great SoCs, but I feel like M1 was more impressive overall, especially in power efficiency.
I think the issue with games is that there aren't very many optimized for Apple Silicon, either the CPU or Metal.
 

Lights87

macrumors newbie
Sep 29, 2020
19
13
Has anyone seen any tests on where 14 inch in throttling before the 16 inch? Curious at what point throttling would start
 
  • Like
Reactions: macpot

tlab

macrumors regular
Dec 12, 2017
105
144
A bit disappointed they didn’t highlight the frolicking whales in the top left or spooky ghosts in the upper right and the bottom of the Max.
 

jdb8167

macrumors 601
Nov 17, 2008
4,222
3,835
A bit disappointed they didn’t highlight the frolicking whales in the top left or spooky ghosts in the upper right and the bottom of the Max.
One thing Anandtech did speculate on is whether the die shots are actual or synthetic. It appears that the Neural Processor is duplicated on the die in the picture. It seems odd that if they had 32 NPU cores on the M1 Max that they wouldn't enable the extra cores.
 

Michael Scrip

macrumors 604
Mar 4, 2011
7,645
11,592
NC
Has anyone seen any tests on where 14 inch in throttling before the 16 inch? Curious at what point throttling would start.

I'm interested in this as well.

But you'd think Apple would have put a beefy enough cooling solution in the 14 inch. It's thick enough.

I'm sure Apple doesn't want a repeat of the previous-gen models where reviewers were rendering video in a freezer!

:p
 

huge_apple_fangirl

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2019
704
1,147
I think the issue with games is that there aren't very many optimized for Apple Silicon, either the CPU or Metal.
Very possible. Apple has put a lot of effort into graphics on the hardware side, but they need to improve Metal and be more proactive about getting developer support for it.
 
  • Like
  • Love
Reactions: Borin and Mr.PT

jdb8167

macrumors 601
Nov 17, 2008
4,222
3,835
The memory advancements are really cool. But the graphics performance in games is kind of disappointing. I don't think they really talked about GPU compute either? On the whole, great SoCs, but I feel like M1 was more impressive overall, especially in power efficiency.
The only games that Anandtech benchmarked are not even Apple silicon ported yet and likely to be badly ported even to macOS x86-64. I don't think it means much unless you really intended to buy one the MacBook Pros to play games. That wouldn't be a particularly smart use of your dollars.
 

Realityck

macrumors 603
Nov 9, 2015
6,206
9,066
Silicon Valley, CA
The site was expecting significant boosts in performance, but "didn't expect some of the monstrous increases that the new chips are able to achieve." The chips outclass any competing laptop design, and also rival the best desktop systems available.
Great that AnandTech now has a technical article focused on the M1 Pro/Max performance and efficiency.
 
  • Like
Reactions: beach bum

falkon-engine

macrumors 6502a
Apr 30, 2010
857
2,137
They also say "... 224GB/s and this appears to be the limit on the SoC fabric that the CPUs are able to achieve, as adding additional cores and threads beyond this point does not increase the bandwidth to DRAM at all. It’s only when the E-cores, which are in their own cluster, are added in, when the bandwidth is able to jump up again, to a maximum of 243GB/s.

While 243GB/s is massive, and overshadows any other design in the industry, it’s still quite far from the 409GB/s the chip is capable of. More importantly for the M1 Max, it’s only slightly higher than the 204GB/s limit of the M1 Pro, so from a CPU-only workload perspective, it doesn’t appear to make sense to get the Max if one is focused just on CPU bandwidth."
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.