The Apple Silicon discussion and experience thread

marcos_eirik

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A sum up of all the new MacBooks Pro:
 

killpanda

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I got my MacBook Pro Pro a little while ago, and the experience has been really smooth enough so far. The only pain point, as usual, is with the MX Master 2S.
I don't know if this thing is dying on me or if the software is just terrible, but every couple of days the scroll-wheel just stops working and I have to reboot the whole machine to get it back.
One of my multiport dongle also stops working after a while, but it had no problems on my M1 mini before. Luckily I have another one that works fine for now.
 

marcos_eirik

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I got my MacBook Pro Pro a little while ago, and the experience has been really smooth enough so far. The only pain point, as usual, is with the MX Master 2S.
I don't know if this thing is dying on me or if the software is just terrible, but every couple of days the scroll-wheel just stops working and I have to reboot the whole machine to get it back.
One of my multiport dongle also stops working after a while, but it had no problems on my M1 mini before. Luckily I have another one that works fine for now.
Yes, Logitech's software seems to be a little dodgy at times.

My MX keys did act strange occasionally with my old Windows desktop, where the volume would randomly rush straight up to max and refuse to go down, or rush down to zero and refuse to go up if I turned it up or down sometimes. The only thing that cured this was to switch it off and back on again and it worked again. But apart from this, my Logitech stuff, both the MX Keys and the MX Master 3 seems to work really well with my M1 MacBook Air. Interestingly, neither of them are the "Mac-version", but I have installed the Logi Options which is running (through Rosetta 2) in the background.
 

leviathan

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Damn, I've almost lost all hope... but today, over 3 months after the initial order date, the 16" MBP finally came! M1 Max / 64GB, 32 GPU cores all the things.

And it's pretty awesome. Very snappy, screen is awesome, battery life is awesome. Have yet to run anything really demanding on it, but just setting it up with all the apps I need for work and such is a breeze. Keyboard is a million times better than the butterfly-switch ones I've had to briefly use in the past couple years, and having never used the Touch Bar for more than a few minutes at a time, I'm sure not missing it.

Some minor issues though.

- I dislike how full-screen apps are handled with the notch - would much prefer them to render the menu and the tray at all times instead of just blacking out the area left and right.
- Font rendering on non-Retina external displays is horrible. Ok, this is a MacOS issue, not anything specific to the M1, still. Apparently there are fixes, gonna have to experiment around a bit.
- It's really heavy -.- If I knew just how bulky it is, maybe I would've gone for the 14". Maybe. Not likely, but maybe.
 

killpanda

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- I dislike how full-screen apps are handled with the notch - would much prefer them to render the menu and the tray at all times instead of just blacking out the area left and right.

You're in luck, they've added that option when they released these computers :)

Screen Shot 2022-01-24 at 9.30.42 AM.png
 

leviathan

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You're in luck, they've added that option when they released these computers :)

View attachment 3563837
Huh, it's almost like almost all the notch bashing online completely ignores available options and third-party apps that fix various issues :D Thanks for the hint, would've probably found this myself eventually, but my MacOS know-how is way out of date for now.

edit Hm, after testing a bit, not fully happy still. The setting applies to all screens, including external ones that have no notch, and on those the menu bar makes the full screen app smaller - not ideal for full-screen videos or games. Ideally I'd want this to be active for the MBP screen, but disabled for external screens. Need further research :)
 
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marcos_eirik

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- It's really heavy -.- If I knew just how bulky it is, maybe I would've gone for the 14". Maybe. Not likely, but maybe.
Congratulations on the 16" Max! It sure sounds awesome!

But it is a ch0nk. Some of the reviewers mentioned that, and went for the 14" in stead. However, the M1 Max is very taxing on the 14" chassis, especially with the battery and the thermals it has, Apple even throttles it so much that the 32c GPU kind of pointless in the 14", so you may as well just go for the 24c gpu. The 16" also has a much beefier cooling system than the 14".

My brother originally ordered a 16" 32c M1 Max with 64 GB ram and 1 tb storage. However, after the reviews surfaced he changed that to an M1 Pro with 32 GB ram, and 2 tb storage. He felt that the whole point with the switch to M1 was to get maximum battery life in that form factor, and he felt that he didn't need the M1 Max performance.
 

leviathan

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Tbh for me the 14" really isn't a viable choice, the reason being our IT being weird in what options they make available: the M1 Max is only available in the 16" chassis for us, 14" is M1 Pro only. And the Pro is out for me for two reasons: the RAM limitation, and support for only 2 external displays. So the 16" is really the only option, and ultimately I'm glad I went for it. Yes, it's a chonk - but it fits in my backpack, and is still comfy enough to use in my lap on the couch, so it's all good.

Having mentioned displays... I've toyed around with font smoothing settings, and still think it renders like absolute ass on non-Retina displays. And apparently the M1 Macs won't do any Retina resolutions on 1440p screens - although even if that worked, it'd result in all text being too large to be useful. Also tried BetterDummy, it actually kinda worked, but getting three mirrored dummies setup and configured correctly to match 3 external displays in the right configuration is an order of magnitude more fiddly than I'm willing to put up with.

So the obvious solution is, of course, to upgrade my home office setup to 3x 4K :D Good thing I was already in the middle of researching new monitors anyway, and the ones I'm currently trying are getting returned for several reasons - with them being only 1440p now getting added to the list. For now, ordered a single AOC 4K 27" for a test run, if it's good getting two more.
 

leviathan

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Well, there's a bit less capital investment involved, and they can also be shipped in boxes which makes it a bit easier :)

On the topic of actual Apple Silicon experiences: hot damn. I knew this thing would be fast, but I'm still blown away. It chews through compiling and running code like a goddamn high-end workstation on steroids, be it Kotlin or Typescript. Puts my Ryzen 3700X-based desktop with a NVME SSD to complete shame - all while running on battery and barely using any juice. This is almost embarassing :D and I haven't even done anything to load up the GPU part of the Max yet.
 

killpanda

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I've just discovered this gem of an app that finally allowed me to rid myself of the hell that Logi Options is:


It doesn't handle one of the button on my MX Master 2S, but it allows for gestures and various click patterns on the middle click, which is actually more useful. Crucially, so far I haven't needed to relaunch its daemon, and it doesn't wake up my MacBook right away when I put it to sleep like Options does.
 

Tram

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Okay, the iPhone 13 and 13 Pro are now available in green, the SE gets an A15 chip and 5G support, and iPad Air gets an M1 chip and new colors. Nothing particularly interesting there.

What is interesting, at least to me, is the new Mac Studio, as well as the Studio Display.

We've been hearing rumors of a new, G4 Cube-inspired Mac, and here it finally is! I think it's interesting, but overpriced. The base model is essentially a MacBook Pro without the display, keyboard, trackpad and battery, but better cooling. Its price is OK, one could say, but the upgraded, M1 Ultra doesn't seem like good value at all at $3,999. I know this is Apple, and that's the way they work, yada yada, but at $3,999, you open up a lot of possibilities in the PC world.

The Studio Display is an expensive display, but I can see it making sense for some users. Still, there is a possibility that the 5K panel is the same one as on the 5K iMac, and consecutively, LG UltraFine 5K, which was a much cheaper display, even if not as nice-looking and nicely built as this one.

But the real problem I have with these is that they're supposed to replace the 27" 5K iMac, which has been silently discontinued tonight. Just the base configuration of a Mac Studio + Studio Display is already over $3,500. Not to mention you don't get keyboard or mouse/trackpad then. And I doubt we'll get an M1 Pro and M1 Max in the Studio Display-like design at some point, which would essentially be a recipe for a new 27" iMac.
 

marcos_eirik

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Yes, looks expensive, but that is (with a few exceptions) usually the case with Apple.

The Mac Studio is the cheapest way into an M1 Max though, as the 14" MacBook Pro with the M1 Max (and 14" cabinet's thermal limits) is at least $3K for the binned M1 Max. My only dislike here is the boring Mac mini XL look they went with, I hoped they would give it the Mac Pro cheese grater front and back with the supreme airflow through the cabinet as a bonus. Looking at the top of the line Mac Studio from an Apple user's perspective, you are getting more performance than a Mac Pro with a 28 core Xeon and W6900 GPU (an almost $20K machine) for a 1/4 of the price, that is $1K less than the base Mac Pro.

Looking at the Studio Display it seems expensive at first glance, compared to the 27" LG Ultrafine 5K, but it comes with a much better camera, better speakers, better microphones and a much more premium build quality, than the plastic LG comes with, and the price difference (here at least) is not that big. The LG is 15K NOK, the Study Display is 18K NOK.

I think Apple has decided to replace the 27" iMac with the Mac Studio and Studio Display, as the 11mm thin design of the M1 iMac is most likely too tight for anything more powerful than an M1. Also, no white bezels on the Studio Display, so YAY to that...

Also, liked the green iPhone 13. If I was in the market, I would get a green 13 mini in a heartbeat. Also surprised that Apple gave the iPad Air the M1, that makes it the cheapest M1 device, I believe (if we ignore refurbished M1 Mac minis) And it makes most, if not all Android tablets look weak in comparison, and it will most likely receive updates for something like 7 or 8 years.
 

NecroJoe

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So, after Apple makes their 999th revision to the M1 Ultra, do you think they'll switch from numbers to letters? Let's see...what would that be 999+1 is 1,000...the MK Ultra, I guess?
 

marcos_eirik

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Mac Studio, base M1 Max, and base M1 Ultra vs. base iMac Pro and 5K iMac (10c Core i9, RX 5700XT, and 64GB ram)


TLDW: Ignore the clickbait-y title, the Apple Silicon Mac Studio gives you significantly more performance than the both of the iMacs. Even the base M1 Max outperforms both the iMacs in almost all of the tasks.
 

leviathan

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Not surprised. After working with the M1 Max / 64GB in the 16" MBP for a couple months now, I'm still continuously blown away by the performance shown on some tasks that pop up every once in a while. M1 Ultra must be an absolute beast in pro use.

Wonder how they'll adapt and/or scale the concept to the eventual M1-/M2-based Mac Pro. I guess even moar cores, and probably clocking it all much higher with an even beefier cooling setup and no constraints on power consumption.
 
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