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meboy

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 12, 2012
389
312
Was thinking about getting a Mac Studio with M1 Max but concerned about speed. It's already been almost a year and Intel's 13th Gen are looking like a way better value prop.

Thought I should at least hook up my M2 Macbook Air to a 4k monitor and open all my usual multitasking stuff to see how it does rather than just using it as a secondary device with restricted use.
Same stuff on Windows with Intel 8th Gen 8700 (capped at 65w) would be anywhere from 7 to 12 GB of Ram use.
M2 Macbook Air is the 8Gb/256Gb config.

It didn't go well.
Yeah I've seen the benchmarks and I'm sure in some tasks the M1 Max might beat the 2018 Intel machine easily but in real use moving windows around, scrolling, heavy programs/browser stuff the M2 Air was dying well before I could get up to what would be about 8Gb ram use on the windows machine.
I'm also well aware of the different TDP's but I would've expected a lot more given all the hype.

Are the M1 Max chips really good or are people just looking at benchmarks/hype and convincing themselves they are?
 

Technerd108

macrumors 68030
Oct 24, 2021
2,947
4,152
M2 Pro Mac Mini would probably be a better fit for your use case and the base model with 16gb ram is priced pretty close to the base M2 MBA

Then after using the Mac Mini with M2 Pro on your 4k monitor I think you might have a very different experience.

On desktop Intel 13th gen does very well as long as the cooling solution is appropriate.

The main advantage a M2 MBA has is portability, battery life and medium to light use. It also works as well plugged in as unplugged something Intel and AMD just can't match in the mobile space but desktop is a completely different ballgame. Apple just shot there first bullet in that space with the Mac Mini. We will see what comes next. Considering you can get a base M2 Mac Mini for $599 and the well equipped Pro model for $1299 I think Apple is very competitive now
 
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meboy

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 12, 2012
389
312
sorry what do you mean by dying, is the UI draggy or laggy?

Yeah. Pretty surprisingly so.
It was clearly hurting well before I thought it should have been slowing down at all.

This with all the multiple monitor issues people post and I think I'm putting off Mac desktop for a while.
 

iamfredrik

macrumors regular
Jul 29, 2013
105
59
Yeah. Pretty surprisingly so.
It was clearly hurting well before I thought it should have been slowing down at all.

This with all the multiple monitor issues people post and I think I'm putting off Mac desktop for a while.

I have not experienced any lag when connected to a 4k monitor, but I have 16GB ram. However, are you sure that the monitor is connected at 60Hz? If it’s only 30Hz it would explain the lag.
 
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Cuesca

macrumors regular
Jun 20, 2012
118
149
I have the base MBA M2 as well, I bought it for a trip but I also wanted to use it for simple tasks so I won't have to use my power hungry desktop(2nd in household energy usage, 1st is a car that drove 20k miles in 2022). I usually have Safari with 4-5 tabs open, Pixelmator, Discord, Transmission, Mail, Outlook and Excel so far I did not experience any lag on my LG Ultragear 32" 4k 160hz monitor. My only issue is the refresh is limited to 60hz, but this could be due to the HDMI to USBC cable.

In regard to excessive SWAP usage, My Excel workload isn't that big but so I have yet to experience it. SWAP usually shows zero or a few hundred MBs.
 
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