• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

Question New Apple SoC - M1 - For lower end Macs - Geekbench 5 single-core >1700

Page 2 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

Eug

Lifer
Mar 11, 2000
23,015
536
126
These are very much the three low-end machines. Low-end means, uh, low-end...

Don't waste time complaining that high-end doesn't exist; the only interesting question is how many months until Apple announce it.
They are selling the Intel Macs alongside the M1 Macs. The 13" Intel MacBook Pro can be configured with up to 32 GB RAM, and the Intel Mac mini can be configured with up to 64 GB RAM. But they are the higher end Intel models.

This is classic Apple. They hamstring the first iteration with something, only to fix it in the second generation.


The MBA replaces all Intel models, but the MBP only replaces the lower-end, two-port Intel models, and the high-end Intel models remain in the lineup. Same for Mac Mini.

The M1 is probably an A14X with added IO and such, and I'm guessing the 16GB RAM ceiling and the 2 port limit is associated with that. I expect the M1 will be faster for both CPU and GPU than Tiger Lake, but it's pretty clearly a first foray into the world of Arm Macs. Will be interesting to see if the Bloomberg 8x4 core, which will certainly appear in the 24" iMac next year, also gets backloaded into the high-end Macbook Pro 13 and Mac Mini models. Otherwise we're probably waiting for Fall 2021 to see 13" Macbook Pros with 32 GB RAM, 4 ports, etc.
Sounds about right.

The low end M1, high end Intel does make sense though. Cuz lower end consumers are less likely to be locked to Intel-specific software.
 

tamz_msc

Platinum Member
Jan 5, 2017
2,802
2,475
136
Were the games they showed running native? Or were they x86 originals deliberately shown to make the point that "we're good enough, even at emulation"?
You get my point; emulated doesn't show us what the GPU can do under ideal circumstances.
Only Baldur's Gate 3 might have required emulation - the rest were titles unknown to me which I'm hoping are MacOS/iOS exclusive titles which might be running native. We'll need more details.
 

awesomedeluxe

Member
Feb 12, 2020
69
23
41
Screen Shot 2020-11-10 at 2.20.51 PM.png

I guess this is the biggest question left about the M1. Anyone want to take a guess? I'll venture it's just plain old dual channel LPDDR4.
 

SarahKerrigan

Senior member
Oct 12, 2014
219
232
116
Were the games they showed running native? Or were they x86 originals deliberately shown to make the point that "we're good enough, even at emulation"?
You get my point; emulated doesn't show us what the GPU can do under ideal circumstances.
The Baldur's Gate devs were in the "porting our software is easy" video, so I would be surprised if the video of it wasn't native - but anything's possible, I suppose.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Tlh97 and name99

IvanKaramazov

Member
Jun 29, 2020
55
95
51
The Baldur's Gate devs were in the "porting our software is easy" video, so I would be surprised if the video of it wasn't native - but anything's possible, I suppose.
Yeah, I expect Baldur's Gate is native. Larian is also bringing Divinity Original Sin 2 to the iPad sometime soon, so it seems like they're supporting Apple's Arm efforts in general.

EDIT: Also note this tweet from the head of the Apple Silicon Graphics Drivers Team, who explicitly calls at Larian as a partner.
 
Last edited:

Eug

Lifer
Mar 11, 2000
23,015
536
126
Memories of A12X vs A12Z:

There are 7 core and 8 core GPU variants of M1.

I guess this is Apple's version of binning.

MacBook Air - 7-core or 8-core GPU
MacBook Pro - 8-core GPU
Mac mini - 8-core GPU
 

IvanKaramazov

Member
Jun 29, 2020
55
95
51
Memories of A12X vs A12Z:

There are 7 core and 8 core GPU variants of M1.

I guess this is Apple's version of binning.

MacBook Air - 7-core or 8-core GPU
MacBook Pro - 8-core GPU
Mac mini - 8-core GPU
I feel like it gives some room for speculation about eventual SKUs in the future. 7 core binned chips for the entry MBA and 8 core for the high-end MBA and entry MBP13. Presumably in the next generation something like a more-CPU-core M2X binned for less functional GPU cores on the middle MBP13 and full-cores on the high-end MBP13 and the MBP16, and so forth.
 

Doug S

Senior member
Feb 8, 2020
506
705
96
The M1 is probably an A14X with added IO and such
I wouldn't be at all surprised if the M1 and A14X are the same silicon, just with a fuse or two blown to cause it to identity itself differently. The M1 has an ISP, which probably doesn't have much function on a laptop that has a single camera of comparatively low quality (versus what you get on modern phones)
 

Eug

Lifer
Mar 11, 2000
23,015
536
126
I wouldn't be at all surprised if the M1 and A14X are the same silicon, just with a fuse or two blown to cause it to identity itself differently. The M1 has an ISP, which probably doesn't have much function on a laptop that has a single camera of comparatively low quality (versus what you get on modern phones)
Couldn't they leverage the ISP for some image software?
 

Gideon

Golden Member
Nov 27, 2007
1,188
2,179
136
Interesting. If they want to continue with the single SoC design for the 15" macbook nad imac, they probably need to use HBM2 there (at least i hope they do), otherwise the graphics perf will take a dive compared to last gen
 

IvanKaramazov

Member
Jun 29, 2020
55
95
51
I wouldn't be at all surprised if the M1 and A14X are the same silicon, just with a fuse or two blown to cause it to identity itself differently. The M1 has an ISP, which probably doesn't have much function on a laptop that has a single camera of comparatively low quality (versus what you get on modern phones)
Worth noting that they are using the ISP to attempt to sharpen the image on the webcam. I can't imagine you can do much to improve that terrible 720p camera, but I suppose we'll see.
 

Doug S

Senior member
Feb 8, 2020
506
705
96
Interesting. If they want to continue with the single SoC design for the 15" macbook nad imac, they probably need to use HBM2 there (at least i hope they do), otherwise the graphics perf will take a dive compared to last gen
I suspect the rumored 8+4 core chip will slide in those (and maybe be offered as an optional upgrade for the 13" MBP) and it will also have more GPU cores.

I would also not be surprised if that 8+4 chip was able to operate as a chiplet so 2 or 4 of them could be used to create a 16 or 32 core MCM for the high end stuff. But they said the transition would take two years (like I had previously guessed) so they have plenty of time to do a monolithic design for those should they choose to do so.

I wonder how a Mac Pro with 32 cores taken from a 3nm A16 would do against contemporary Intel and AMD based workstations?
 

Doug S

Senior member
Feb 8, 2020
506
705
96
Worth noting that they are using the ISP to attempt to sharpen the image on the webcam. I can't imagine you can do much to improve that terrible 720p camera, but I suppose we'll see.
That's hardly a computationally demanding process, certainly not worth using an ISP for unless you already have one laying around.
 

Entropyq3

Junior Member
Jan 24, 2005
22
22
81
The RAM isn't integrated into the SoC, it would be integrated into the package via stacking. Just like it is in the iPhone/iPad SoCs. Or so he's assuming.
The CGI assembly videos can be interpreted. I was basically asking the OP, Eug, where he got memory type, and cache size from. Didn’t see either in the presentation.
 

IvanKaramazov

Member
Jun 29, 2020
55
95
51
That's hardly a computationally demanding process, certainly not worth using an ISP for unless you already have one laying around.
For sure, I expect they're using it because it's there, essentially. Not a bad side benefit but I do wonder if they'll use it for anything else or if it's mostly wasted space on the Mac?
 

Eug

Lifer
Mar 11, 2000
23,015
536
126
The CGI assembly videos can be interpreted. I was basically asking the OP, Eug, where he got memory type, and cache size from. Didn’t see either in the presentation.
Hmm... I didn't realize that Apple had listed even more cache, separate for the high-efficiency cores. I'll adjust the first post.

f1605031779.jpg

f1605031791.jpg

As for the DDR4 memory, they didn't actually say that for the M1 chip, but they were describing a non-M1 logic board design like this:

Screen Shot 2020-11-10 at 4.26.30 PM.png

But then they go on to say all of that has been combined into M1.

f1605031716.jpg

I think it's reasonable to believe M1 uses DDR4 and not DDR5.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: amd6502

name99

Senior member
Sep 11, 2010
400
296
136
I can’t find that anywhere. Where’s this info from?
Likewise for the cache-size data.
Delete this, My bad. I misinterpreted something that slipped by during the presentation.

I'm no longer certain the RAM is LPDDR4, could go either way.
Anyone have better evidence.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY