The first M3 Macs are coming soon, here’s everything we know

Following the announcement of the M2 chip at WWDC 2022, we’re now on the cusp of Apple announcing the new M3 chip. The M3 chip is expected to be a major upgrade over the M2, switching to a new fabrication and production process that will offer a major boost in both performance and efficiency.

M3 chip specs

The biggest change to the M3 chip is that it will be manufactured using a 3-nanometer fabrication process. The previous two Apple Silicon chips for the Mac, as well as recent iPhone models, were all fabricated using a 5nm process. The “nanometer” fabrication size for a chip represents the distance between transistors on the chip. The smaller the distance, the better the performance and efficiency.

The reduction in fabrication size from 5nm to 3nm represents a major change. This will allow for a higher density of cores, while simultaneously meaning that the performance and efficiency of each core will improve.

Bloomberg has reported the base configuration of M3 Pro chip will feature 12 CPU cores and 18 GPU cores, with a maximum of 36GB of RAM. This suggests that the base M3 Pro chip has 2 more CPU cores and 2 more GPU cores compared to the baseline M2 Pro chip. The baseline M3 Pro will also apparently have a slightly higher RAM ceiling, supporting up to 36GB vs 32GB on the M2 Pro chip.

M2 chip production | M2 system on a chip

Theoretically, you can expect similar increases on the base M3, the M3 Max, and the M3 Ultra chips as well. As of right now, more details on the configurations for the broader M3 chip lineup haven’t leaked.

Macworld took a stab at estimating the potential performance gains for the M3 chip, based on past updates and the increase in cores:

As always, Apple may strike its own balance between efficiency and performance improvements. The company could lean more heavily into efficiency, thereby focusing on things like battery life improvements and opting for smaller performance gains. It could also do the inverse and keep battery life and efficiency roughly the same, while drastically increasing performance capabilities.

First Macs with the M3 chip

According to Bloomberg, Apple’s first Macs with an M3 chip inside will include the 13-inch MacBook Air, a new version of the 24-inch iMac, and an M3 MacBook Pro. Yes, that’s the 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar that remains a product in Apple’s lineup for some reason.

Higher-end Mac models, such as the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro, aren’t expected to be updated to M3 chips until sometime in early to mid-2024. These machines will be powered by the M3 Pro and M3 Max chips. At some point next year, Apple is also likely to debut the M3 Ultra chip in higher-end Macs such as the Mac Studio and Mac Pro.

In addition to the Macs with M3 chips, Apple is also prepping a new version of the iPad Pro with an M3 chip for some time in early 2024.

Delays and supply shortages

Given that the M3 chip will be TSMC’s first 3nm processor, it’s possible that it faces delays and production issues. In fact, TSMC has already said that the company is struggling to keep up with demand from its customers for 3nm chips.

We’ll have more details on the M3 chip in the lead-up to the release of the first M3 Macs, which is expected to happen as soon as October.

Follow ChanceThreadsTwitterInstagram, and Mastodon

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top