We don’t yet know what Apple has in store for the upcoming Apple Silicon Mac Pro model, but Macworld has done some speculating based on the M1 journey.
It suggests that an M2 Extreme chip could be released next year to power a new Mac Pro…
After years of speculation about Apple ditching Intel chips in favor of its own ARM-based chips for the Mac, the M1 chip debuted in the MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, Mac mini, and 24-inch iMac in 2020.
This was followed in 2021 by the M1 Pro and M1 Max, both of which were available in 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, and in 2022 by the M1 Ultra, which debuted in the new Mac Studio.
In July, Apple restarted the cycle with the introduction of the next generation of Apple Silicon, the M2, in the all-new MacBook Air. We expect to see new MacBook Pro models with M2 Pro and M2 Max chips as early as later this month.
According to reports, Apple’s array of superlatives does not stop with the Ultra, and we will also see an M2 Extreme chip.
M2 Extreme processor
According to Macworld, Apple’s M1 approach involves effectively doubling up each chip to form the next one. On this basis, we can extrapolate a possible specification for an M2 Extreme. It implies that the lineup could look like this:
- M2: 8-core CPU, 10-core GPU, and up to 24GB of RAM
- M2 Pro: up to 10-core CPU, up to 20-core GPU, up to 48GB RAM (predicted).
- M2 Max: up to 10-core CPU, 40-core GPU, and up to 96GB RAM (predicted).
- M2 Ultra: 24-core CPU, 80-core GPU, up to 192GB RAM (predicted).
- M2 Extreme: 48-core CPU, 160-core GPU cores, up to 384GB RAM (predicted).
According to Bloomberg, a slightly more modest 40-core chip is in the works for the upcoming Mac Pro.
A redesigned Mac Pro codenamed Jade 2C-Die and Jade 4C-Die is expected to come in 20 or 40 computing core variations, with 16 or 32 high-performance cores and four or eight high-efficiency cores. The chips would also have graphics options with 64 or 128 cores. The computing core counts would exceed the 28-core maximum offered by today’s Intel Mac Pro chips, while the higher-end graphics chips would replace Advanced Micro Devices Inc. components.
Apple is also working on a 3nm process, which would allow for even higher transistor densities – though one recent report suggested that a 3nm process could arrive in Macs before the iPhone 15.
Most likely, the Mac Pro
The M2 Extreme, whether 40-core or 48-core, is most likely destined for the Apple Silicon Mac Pro. This long-awaited machine is set to arrive next year.
Apple was said to be planning an M1 Mac Pro but decided to wait for the M2 chips instead.