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The upcoming Mac Pro may be based on M1 chip, not M2

Apple’s Mac Pro lineup is supposed to be the company’s most powerful desktop computer. Seeing how powerful the M1 Pro and M1 Max silicon are, one would think Apple would put the next-generation M2 processor in the upcoming Mac Pro. Apple will apparently continue using its M1 chips in the Mac Pro according to leaks.

This tidbit of information comes from well-known Apple tipster Dylan (@dylandkt on Twitter). He goes on to note that Apple will complete its transition to its own silicon at end of Q4 2022 and that the Mac Pro will indeed be the last device to make the switch.

Close up of a Mac Pro glowing in a red light.
Alessio Zaccaria on Unsplash

Instead of the M2, the Mac Pro will instead “be a further extension of the M1 beyond the cores of the M1 Max.”  Though that’s likely to disappoint those who were hoping for a super-powerful M2 version of the Mac Pro, the news isn’t all bad.

Earlier leaks suggest that the next iMac will contain a monster 20-core chip called the M1 Max Duo. It basically fuses two M1 Max chips together and features a 20-core CPU, a 64-core GPU, and up to 128GB of RAM. The current maxed-out MacBook Pro today has an M1 Max chip with a 10-core CPU, 32-core GPU, and up to 64GB of RAM and completely demolishes the current Mac Pro.

Keep in mind that for the current Mac Pro to even compete with the M1 Max it has to use the 28-core Intel Xeon W processor with the Afterburner card.

The Apple Silicon transition will end by Q4 of 2022. The Mac Pro will be the last device to be replaced. The Mac Pro’s processor will not be an extension of the M2. The processor of the Mac Pro will instead be a further extension of the M1 beyond the cores of the M1 Max.

— Dylan (@dylandkt) January 17, 2022

Additionally, Apple seems to introduce new chips in their lower models first before going whole-hog with the professional computers. The 2022 MacBook Air is expected to get the M2 chip along with a significant redesign that also includes a mini-LED display.

For those still holding out for the M2 upgrade, those chips are rumored to be made on TSMC’s 4nm process node. The smaller node size will enable Apple to increase performance while maintaining battery efficiency. Given how powerful and efficient the current M1 MacBook Air is, it’ll likely become even more so with the M2.

If that wasn’t enough, the rumored M3 chip will allegedly be made on a 3nm node that would be able to fit four dies of up to 40 cores. Apple aficionados definitely have much to be happy about in the coming months and years.

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