Apple ARM Based MacBooks and iMacs to come in 2021

Axman

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Eh, dead end, I assumed there was more Apple to it than there is.
 

Algrim

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Really good pros and cons being brought up here. I know, for my work, if Apple makes Macs (iMacs, MacBooks, Mac Pros) using ARM, I would see no justification for requesting/using a Mac at work: If I have a Mac I can work with product sources that come from both a Mac and a PC/Windows.
 

IdiotInCharge

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The point we keep bringing up over and over is that it will be native to native.
Software will need to be recompiled for ARM, however, that's all that will be needed for those applications that have already been developed using the latest tooling.


As for the overall discussion -- remember Windows 8? The idea of seamlessly switching between touch-centric and desktop-centric interfaces, potentially with the same apps?

Where Apple is going isn't at all new. The difference is that they are putting much more effort into it than Microsoft did, and from a technical perspective, look much more likely to succeed in implementation, regardless of whether their fruits are accepted by consumers or how they're received in tech forums ;).
 

IdiotInCharge

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I know, for my work, if Apple makes Macs (iMacs, MacBooks, Mac Pros) using ARM, I would see no justification for requesting/using a Mac at work: If I have a Mac I can work with product sources that come from both a Mac and a PC/Windows.
It's highly unlikely that Apple will switch over to ARM completely in the foreseeable future. If they start shipping 'desktop' systems with ARM CPUs, they'll just be installing the ARM executables of apps instead of the x86 executables. They've done all the work to make that possible, however, actual ARM hardware isn't anywhere close to satisfying the performance needs that x86 satisfies today, and x86 is also a moving target (Intel's latest stumbles being a bump, not a hard stop, and AMD looking to keep up).
 

Verge

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It's highly unlikely that Apple will switch over to ARM completely in the foreseeable future. If they start shipping 'desktop' systems with ARM CPUs, they'll just be installing the ARM executables of apps instead of the x86 executables. They've done all the work to make that possible, however, actual ARM hardware isn't anywhere close to satisfying the performance needs that x86 satisfies today, and x86 is also a moving target (Intel's latest stumbles being a bump, not a hard stop, and AMD looking to keep up).
mac pro not mentioned or implied in any news
 

raz-0

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Yup. One of the highest valuated companies that has market dominance in multiple consumer markets is completely stupid. They can’t do anything right and anything to the contrary is just lies.

Ooh you are brilliant. The fact that apple has a 1.5 trillion market cap means they can't possibly be idiots or lack caution or market insight. Yet Microsoft, a 1.4 trillion market cap company were idiots.

Even if apple has their act together on the OS side, which historically is not a guarantee, if you think the 3rd party software developers do, you are mistaken. Some might. Most don't. The real wildcard is how many of the ios app developers are prepared to move their good mobile apps onto a more traditional laptop. Which might be default make you make some ooh that could be neat sounds, but then you ahve to add in apple staunchly resisting the concept of 2-in-1s and touch screens.

They'll have a hard time convincing people to buy a $2k dicking around on the internet platform when they already sell one for under $1k. It'll need to be able to do real stuff.
 

UnknownSouljer

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Ooh you are brilliant. The fact that apple has a 1.5 trillion market cap means they can't possibly be idiots or lack caution or market insight. Yet Microsoft, a 1.4 trillion market cap company were idiots.

Even if apple has their act together on the OS side, which historically is not a guarantee, if you think the 3rd party software developers do, you are mistaken. Some might. Most don't. The real wildcard is how many of the ios app developers are prepared to move their good mobile apps onto a more traditional laptop. Which might be default make you make some ooh that could be neat sounds, but then you ahve to add in apple staunchly resisting the concept of 2-in-1s and touch screens.

They'll have a hard time convincing people to buy a $2k dicking around on the internet platform when they already sell one for under $1k. It'll need to be able to do real stuff.
You wasted a lot of hot air. Your response should have been: "I agree".
 

Snowdog

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It's official. Switching to ARM. Supposed to be finished transition in a two year window:
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/202...ap-for-moving-the-first-macs-away-from-intel/

No details on what the new HW will look like, but they really seem to have mastered emulation much better than Microsoft, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, was running pretty good in emulation on the Developer HW.

The developer HW was only a an iPad Pro chip backed with 16GB of RAM.
 

bman212121

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It's official. Switching to ARM. Supposed to be finished transition in a two year window:
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/202...ap-for-moving-the-first-macs-away-from-intel/

No details on what the new HW will look like, but they really seem to have mastered emulation much better than Microsoft, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, was running pretty good in emulation on the Developer HW.

The developer HW was only a an iPad Pro chip backed with 16GB of RAM.
Keep in mind that game was hand picked. It's NOT really emulation of the GPU because the game was already built on top of metal. So they are likely able to just use the same API calls and handle them appropriately. Show a non metal game and it might fall to pieces.

I'd say the one obvious low key thing is we'll definitely see touch screen support. All of those design elements, especially things like the volume slider scream touch ready.
 

juanrga

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It's official. Switching to ARM. Supposed to be finished transition in a two year window:
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/202...ap-for-moving-the-first-macs-away-from-intel/

No details on what the new HW will look like, but they really seem to have mastered emulation much better than Microsoft, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, was running pretty good in emulation on the Developer HW.

The developer HW was only a an iPad Pro chip backed with 16GB of RAM.
Apple keynote

 

Snowdog

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Keep in mind that game was hand picked. It's NOT really emulation of the GPU because the game was already built on top of metal. So they are likely able to just use the same API calls and handle them appropriately. Show a non metal game and it might fall to pieces.
Are there still non-Metal games on MacOS with Apple deprecating everything?
 

bman212121

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Are there still non-Metal games on MacOS with Apple deprecating everything?
That's definitely a very interesting topic. Games like Factorio were not using Metal, but basically starting to be forced to go down that route. I'd say that move to push even non store apps to metal was to help this transition. But you could have bought starcraft 2 for your Intel Mac and that was always going to be OpenGL. It will be interesting to see if those work well or if at all on the new version of MacOS.
 

UnknownSouljer

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Are there still non-Metal games on MacOS with Apple deprecating everything?
No.
From a technical standpoint "yes" they exist, but that means they are legacy and no longer supported. But if you're talking about anything that works with the most current version of macOS Mojave, then no. Metal is the only graphics API available. It's now 64-bit only, Metal only.
 

bman212121

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No.
From a technical standpoint "yes" they exist, but that means they are legacy and no longer supported. But if you're talking about anything that works with the most current version of macOS Mojave, then no. Metal is the only graphics API available. It's now 64-bit only, Metal only.

There were rumors that Apple would completely remove support for OpenGL with the next OSX release (OSX 10.15). However, at the June 2019 WWDC event, Apple announced that they will still be supporting OpenGL in OSX 10.15 ("Catalina") but also stated that "now is the time to move" implying that this may be the last OSX release that will support OpenGL.
https://www.timeexposure.com/support_center_kb.php?action=article&id=860

OpenGL and OpenCL were officially deprecated in Mojave last year, though that's a little misleading since it implies that Apple had been actively maintaining and updating its support for those standards. In Catalina, as in every macOS version going all the way back to Mavericks, the macOS OpenGL implementation is stuck at version 4.1 (2010), and the OpenCL version is stuck at 1.2 (2011). This means that apps that still rely on those APIs on macOS will continue to run, provided they've been updated to meet the 64-bit-only requirement. But you shouldn't be developing new Mac apps that rely on OpenGL or CL for anything important.
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2019/10/macos-10-15-catalina-the-ars-technica-review/3/#h2

Nope, not actually true. OpenGL is still kicking around in the background, they just merely stated that they weren't going to update it and you should move away. I would say this WWDC is a pretty clear indicator as to why that timeline made sense. They don't really care either way if you continue to use non metal on your Intel mac for the time being because all of the new devices are going to require a recompile anyway. So let whomever is using an Intel Mac cling to their legacy code for another year, but that simply won't be possible once they transition to the next OS.
 

UnknownSouljer

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https://www.timeexposure.com/support_center_kb.php?action=article&id=860



https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2019/10/macos-10-15-catalina-the-ars-technica-review/3/#h2

Nope, not actually true. OpenGL is still kicking around in the background, they just merely stated that they weren't going to update it and you should move away. I would say this WWDC is a pretty clear indicator as to why that timeline made sense. They don't really care either way if you continue to use non metal on your Intel mac for the time being because all of the new devices are going to require a recompile anyway. So let whomever is using an Intel Mac cling to their legacy code for another year, but that simply won't be possible once they transition to the next OS.
MacOS hasn’t supported new version of OpenGL for something like 7 years. So devs have moved away from it because there wasn’t compatibility for newer OpenGL calls.
The real issue was 32-bit support.
https://www.macgamerhq.com/opinion/32-bit-mac-games/

However I’m going to state that you’re going to have a real hard time showing a use case in which OpenGL hasn’t been depreciated to the point of being relevant in any Mac game. In other words there are zero OpenGL + 64-bit games that I know of.

The long push to Metal only and 64-bit killed it all off. The only people using OpenGL are legacy apps that aren’t games. The original question was specifically about whether or not there are OpenGL games that are compatible with Mojave. I would still say the definitive answer is: “no”.
 
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Lakados

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Compatibility shouldn't be a huge issue, most Mac developers have already transitioned to Swift and that is mostly drop in compatible between OSX and iOS with a few changes to the compilers options and the bulk of the incompatibilities being UI related. So anything sold in the iTunes store should have full support day 1 which is the bulk of the stuff out there.
 

bman212121

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MacOS hasn’t supported new version of OpenGL for something like 7 years. So devs have moved away from it because there wasn’t compatibility for newer OpenGL calls.
The real issue was 32-bit support.
https://www.macgamerhq.com/opinion/32-bit-mac-games/

However I’m going to state that you’re going to have a real hard time showing a use case in which OpenGL hasn’t been depreciated to the point of being relevant in any Mac game. In other words there are zero OpenGL + 64-bit games that I know of.

The long push to Metal only and 64-bit killed it all off. The only people using OpenGL are legacy apps that aren’t games. The original question was specifically about whether or not there are OpenGL games that are compatible with Mojave. I would still say the definitive answer is: “no”.
I'm going to assume you mean OpenGL only, because a lot of the games that existed if they received a patch to use metal still have OpenGL. Once again Starcraft 2 is a game that has OpenGL and 64 bit support. But it also does have support for metal now as well. If you read the forums a lot of players are using OpenGL still has it seems to crash less than metal does for that particular game. So I'd say it's still a thing in examples of games that started out as 32 bit / openGL and were patched to 64 bit / metal. Games which started out 64 bit and have only OpenGL support I'd probably agree with you on those are more likely to be unicorns. But as I stated above Factorio qualifies as one of those. They dropped 32 bit support before changing their graphics API on Macs, so for a period of time it was 64 bit only + OpenGL.

The other thing I want to point out is Mojave is 32 bit compatible, it's Catalina you're referring to which is 64 bit only.
 

bman212121

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you guys pre-orderin an ARM-based Mac?
I don't know who would be that eager to pick up a completely new device. History has also shown that first gen devices tend to get shafted when it comes to updates, so if you did pick one up expect it to have a shorter lifespan. I'm not sure if many people on this forum use or support Macs though otherwise this thread would be a lot longer by now.
 

Lakados

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I'm going to assume you mean OpenGL only, because a lot of the games that existed if they received a patch to use metal still have OpenGL. Once again Starcraft 2 is a game that has OpenGL and 64 bit support. But it also does have support for metal now as well. If you read the forums a lot of players are using OpenGL still has it seems to crash less than metal does for that particular game. So I'd say it's still a thing in examples of games that started out as 32 bit / openGL and were patched to 64 bit / metal. Games which started out 64 bit and have only OpenGL support I'd probably agree with you on those are more likely to be unicorns. But as I stated above Factorio qualifies as one of those. They dropped 32 bit support before changing their graphics API on Macs, so for a period of time it was 64 bit only + OpenGL.

The other thing I want to point out is Mojave is 32 bit compatible, it's Catalina you're referring to which is 64 bit only.
MoltenGL was/is pretty easy to integrate into any OpenGL ES project and manages to work with virtually no performance degradation. So lots of older OpenGL stuff was made compliant using that requiring little to no code rewrite.
 

UnknownSouljer

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you guys pre-orderin an ARM-based Mac?
Short answer: yes.
Long answer: if you want to continue using the macOS platform eventually you’ll have no other choice. So the question isn’t whether or not we’ll buy an ARM Mac so much as when that will occur (or otherwise what is your plans as to what to move to now that Apple is going all in on ARM).
I will likely buy one within 2 years of launch. We’ll see how things shake out.
 

Mylex

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I'm anxiously awaiting the comparison in work flow time in stuff like final cut or Photoshop/DXO photolab batches.
 

UnknownSouljer

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I'm anxiously awaiting the comparison in work flow time in stuff like final cut or Photoshop/DXO photolab batches.
I expect that one of the things people will do when they get their hands on ARM Macs will be to benchmark both timeline rendering and final rendering in programs like FCPX on roughly equivalent x86 and ARM machines.

Im assuming ARM will compare very favorably. Especially considering SOTT running seamlessly and quickly even in emulation much faster than equivalent $1000 x86 Macs have been able to do. I don’t think it will be a question of ARM being faster. It will be a question of how much faster?
 

Lakados

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I expect that one of the things people will do when they get their hands on ARM Macs will be to benchmark both timeline rendering and final rendering in programs like FCPX on roughly equivalent x86 and ARM machines.

Im assuming ARM will compare very favorably. Especially considering SOTT running seamlessly and quickly even in emulation much faster than equivalent $1000 x86 Macs have been able to do. I don’t think it will be a question of ARM being faster. It will be a question of how much faster?
I'm not super concerned about "Faster" with heavy software on the Macbook lineup, I mean if it is faster using the heavy stuff than great but their existing Adobe workload is pretty lite, here the big things are going to be heat and battery especially when presenting. Most of my mac users live with their macbooks being hooked to a projector which then uses the AMD GPU and it just ravages their battery life and gets pretty warm in the process.
 

bman212121

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I think the biggest thing about this transition is still more about the GPU than the CPU. For rendering if you're GPU accelerated now it will probably be a moot point in a MBP with a discrete video card. But anything with integrated graphics should see a substantial gain using Apple's processors.
 

jeremyshaw

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I think the biggest thing about this transition is still more about the GPU than the CPU. For rendering if you're GPU accelerated now it will probably be a moot point in a MBP with a discrete video card. But anything with integrated graphics should see a substantial gain using Apple's processors.
Depends. Intel's GPU compute stack is probably the most open and documented of them all (along with SDKs; not that Apple really cares or uses it). With few exceptions, most Macbook also use more powerful versions of Intel IGPs, that until Ice Lake, were rarely seen in other products. The two most notable non Mac implementations (again, before Ice Lake) were the XPS 13 (one generation got it as a mid-model refresh for half of a year) and generation or two of the Surface Pro. In both instances, they were thermally constrained even worse than the MBP was.

Either way, just because Intel IGPs are a joke on the windows side, didn't really reflect the same reality for Macbooks.
 

UnknownSouljer

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I'm not super concerned about "Faster" with heavy software on the Macbook lineup, I mean if it is faster using the heavy stuff than great but their existing Adobe workload is pretty lite, here the big things are going to be heat and battery especially when presenting. Most of my mac users live with their macbooks being hooked to a projector which then uses the AMD GPU and it just ravages their battery life and gets pretty warm in the process.
I disagree in general unless you're just talking about Photoshop. Video editing is basically the hardest thing you can do on a computer in terms of how demanding it is on every aspect of the system. There is a reason why the Mac Pro makes sense in the lineup, because a $2000 Afterburner add-in card is relevant when dealing with 1600Mbps raw video streams for on the fly rendering (which is to say, editing in real time in an NLE). More or less the only other things that are more demanding arguably than video editing is perhaps CG rendering (although clearly video editing is much harder on HD than CG is) or scientific applications.

Showing FCPX running native and quickly on ARM is incredibly relevant in terms of showing off ARM's performance relative to x86.

As for your second part, that's going to be more about efficiency. Which ARM is clearly better at than x86. The A12Z can be operated fanless as shown in the iPad Pro. I'd imagine the same sized battery on ARM versus x86 will have a multiple hour increase in battery life across all applications.

I think the biggest thing about this transition is still more about the GPU than the CPU. For rendering if you're GPU accelerated now it will probably be a moot point in a MBP with a discrete video card. But anything with integrated graphics should see a substantial gain using Apple's processors.
I don't know about this. Based upon what they've shown the A12Z is CLEARLY faster than the Vega 20 from 2019. And I'd argue if its' capable of running SOTT in real time through emulation at 1080p maxed graphics then it's likely faster than the 5600 they just put in the current Macbook Pro 2020 lineup.

I think at this point ARM is clearly faster than all low power GPU options. You'd have to start looking at nVidia 2070's and above to start getting faster discrete mobile GPUs (which aren't an option in current Macbooks). And this is only when we're talking about the A12Z, essentially a 2 year old ARM chip. It's more than likely that an A13X or A14X will drop soon (along side iOS devices) that will be faster still in the GPU arena, especially when clocking it up and getting it into a laptop form factor with any amount of active cooling.
 
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Snowdog

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I think at this point ARM is clearly faster than all low power GPU options. You'd have to start looking at nVidia 2070's and above to start getting faster discrete mobile GPUs (which aren't an option in current Macbooks).
2070?

I think you are getting a bit carried away. There aren't a lot of cross platform GPU benchmarks but I rant into this one where a laptop 1060 is LOT faster than 11" iPad Pro:
103805.png
 

UnknownSouljer

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2070?

I think you are getting a bit carried away. There aren't a lot of cross platform GPU benchmarks but I rant into this one where a laptop 1060 is LOT faster than 11" iPad Pro:
View attachment 255775
I think you're right. I misspoke, likely more like a 2060. But that benchmark you're showing was also dealing with a different operating system and not macOS as well as not paired with 16GB of RAM or clocked up which the Dev kit is very likely to be.
If you want a more convincing graph, show what hardware it takes to run SOTT at 1080p maxed out at roughly 60fps. Because apparently the A12Z is capable of doing that through an emulation layer.
 

Snowdog

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I think you're right. I misspoke, likely more like a 2060. But that benchmark you're showing was also dealing with a different operating system and not macOS as well as not paired with 16GB of RAM or clocked up which the Dev kit is very likely to be.
If you want a more convincing graph, show what hardware it takes to run SOTT at 1080p maxed out at roughly 60fps. Because apparently the A12Z is capable of doing that through an emulation layer.
It's not that much faster than an MX150, so it's maybe about GTX 1050 level, certainly not RTX 2060.

A few Seconds of recorded company demo with unknown settings, and unknown frame-rate is not a better comparison.
 

UnknownSouljer

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It's not that much faster than an MX150, so it's maybe about GTX 1050 level, certainly not RTX 2060.

A few Seconds of recorded company demo with unknown settings, and unknown frame-rate is not a better comparison.
I would say using a can benchmark from Futuremark isn't really useful in terms of showing performance either. So I'm not sure what you're on about. An unknown framerate and unknown settings is far more relevant than anything Futuremark is going to show me. Especially since we are directly not talking about apples to apples.
We're not talking x86 vs x86. We're not even talking about x86 vs ARM. We're talking about x86 vs ARM emulating x86.

And again, these dev units are not even going to be end user hardware. This is likely a stop-gap to wow us again when actual Macbooks drop with a much faster A13x or A14x processor. But even still, this dev hardware is likely clocked up much faster as it's inhabiting the inside of a Mac Mini. So a benchmark showing a comparison to an iPad Pro and other parts is still not an end all be all indicator of performance to a higher clocked and actively cooled chip versus a passively cooled implementation that I have no indication whether it has throttled or not or if it was capable of maintaining clock speed or not or is even the same clock speeds or not.
 
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