It’s been a little over a year since Apple introduced the redesigned 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, powered by the M1 Pro and M1 Max processors. At WWDC ’22, Apple announced the successor to the M1 chip with the M2 and made it available in the new MacBook Air and the 13-inch MacBook Pro. However, the 2021 MacBook Pro models remained “untouched”, as Apple had not yet upgraded the M1 Pro or M1 Max processors.
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Apple today announced M2 Pro and M2 Max, two next-generation SoCs (systems on a chip) that take the breakthrough power-efficient performance of Apple silicon to new heights. M2 Pro scales up the architecture of M2 to deliver an up to 12-core CPU and up to 19-core GPU, together with up to 32GB of fast unified memory.
M2 Max builds on the capabilities of M2 Pro, including an up to 38-core GPU, double the unified memory bandwidth, and up to 96GB of unified memory. Its industry-leading performance per watt makes it the world’s most powerful and power-efficient chip for a pro laptop. Both chips also feature enhanced custom technologies, including a faster 16-core Neural Engine and Apple’s powerful media engine.
That’s all changed as not only did Apple introduce three new products, but these devices are all now powered by Apple’s M2, M2 Pro, or M2 Max processors. According to Apple, the M2 Pro is built on the second-generation 5nm process technology, while consisting of more than 40 billion transistors — nearly 20 percent more than M1 Pro, and double the amount in M2.
Additionally, Apple confirmed that both the M2 Pro and M2 Max chips feature the company’s “next-generation 16-core Neural Engine” which is “up to 40 percent faster than the previous generation.” Both of these are also said to include an updated Security Enclave to provide “Apple’s best-in-class security”.
Apple M2 Pro
With the Apple M2 Pro processor, you will be able to configure it with up to 32GB of RAM, along with opting for a 10-core or 12-core CPU. The end result is a computer that is up to 20% faster than the 10-core CPU found in the 2021 M1 Pro MacBook Pro. And as for graphical performance, Apple states that speeds are “up to 30 percent faster than that of M1 Pro.
Apple claims that the M2 Pro, in a 16-inch MacBook, will provide 40% faster performance with image processing in Photoshop compared to the M1 Pro and is 80% faster than the Intel Core i9. Xcode compile times were also used as a point of reference, with the M2 Pro coming in 2.5x faster than the Core i9 MacBook Pro and 25% faster than the M1 Pro. To go along with the performance gains, the M2 Pro offers hardware-accelerated H.264, HECV, and ProRes video encode and decode.
Apple M2 Max
As you might suspect, the Apple M2 Max is the more powerful of the two processors announced and is Apple’s most impressive SoC to date. If you’re a professional looking for a powerful machine to use anywhere that you go, this will be the one to grab. Memory bandwidth comes in at 400GB/s, which is double that of the M2 Pro, while also supporting up to an incredible 96GB of RAM.
Unlike the M2 Pro, the M2 max “only” uses a 12-core CPU, as you won’t be able to configure it with a 10-core CPU. But Apple states that the GPU is “even more powerful” as it can be configured with up to 38 cores, making it up to 30% faster than the last-generation M1 Max. Another major difference between the M2 Pro and M2 Max is that the latter “features two video encode engines and two ProRes engines, bringing up to 2x faster video encoding than M2 Pro.”
Longest Battery Life In A MacBook
Something that Apple has been lauded for ever since unveiling the M1 chip is the battery life that is possible on its devices. But it seems as though Apple wasn’t content with keeping things the same, as the company claims the new MacBook Pro will be able to reach up to 22 hours on a single charge.
We’re hoping to get our hands on one of the new M2 Pro or M2 Max devices announced, so we’ll be sure to compare it to the M1 Pro MacBook Pro that we have and let you know whether you really need to upgrade. Until then, let us know what you think about Apple’s new processors and if you plan to upgrade from your current machine.
Andrew Myrick is a freelance writer based on the East Coast of the US. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is having a never-ending supply of different keyboards and gaming handhelds that end up collecting more dust than the consoles that are being emulated.