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chucker
 
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2021-08-05, 02:56

Yeah. (Though even 500 nits doesn't compete too great against sunlight. The Apple Watch has 1,000 nits for a reason…)
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
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2021-08-05, 11:03

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
Ah, wrong way to compare brightness. Do the same test outside on a sunny day, you'll notice.
Hmmm. Hadn't thought about that.
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turtle
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2021-08-05, 13:28

So my son decided to take Mrs T's 2019 MBP and now Mrs T wants her TouchBar. First person I've heard actually want it. She does so I guess I know what I'm going to have to buy now.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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kscherer
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2021-10-05, 11:40

Time to get this page going again.

Macrumors published an Anandtech link that demonstrates the performance improvements of the A15. Apple claimed the A15 was 50% faster than the competition, and Anandtech called them out for "lying" (my word, not theirs). It turns out the A15 is actually 62% faster, not 50%. And the new GPU is "absolutely astonishing", and that is a quote!

Double system cache (same size as M1)
50% more L2 cache
Better power efficiency
New CPU microarchitectures

Downside: More throttling, but apparently the danged thing is so fast even when throttled that it crushes the competition!

I'm super excited for the M1X / M2X or whatever Apple calls the thing we all know is coming in a few weeks.

- AppleNova is the best Mac-users forum on the internet. We are smart, educated, capable, and helpful. We are also loaded with smart-alecks! :)
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Last edited by kscherer : 2021-10-05 at 12:37.
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psmith2.0
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2021-10-05, 12:35

This may prove to be the best thing Apple has ever done, rolling their own.

They pretty much already stood alone (at least in the consumer/mainstream arena) when it came to the hardware + OS/apps part, but they still had to rely on others for the underlying muscle/function.

Supply shortages/constraints aside (and they won't last forever), they are now firmly in the driver's seat, across the board...their hardware, running their OS/apps and now powered by their guts/processors. Can you imagine the position that puts them in, to where they have full control to tweak/optimize those three things for maximum impact?

I'd say that puts the platform in a damn good place for some time to come.

I love that they're doing this. I wasn't sure I'd ever see it happen, but it's awesome that I am.

What other outfit - normal, affordable mainstream ones (I'm not talking $19,000 custom, specialized server/enterprise shit that nobody's going to buy/receive for Christmas ) - can say this? I can't think of any. All the others are a box from this company, running an OS from that company, with processors/graphics from yet another company. No comparison between that and what Apple should be able to accomplish in the years to come, with all those things under their thumb/roof.

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2021-10-05 at 12:49.
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Frank777
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2021-10-05, 14:13

Yes, it's a given that Apple's M-chip year-over-year performance will be spectacular, for the first half-decade at least.

And I'm sure the M1X will be exciting to watch. Looking forward to the bigger iMac, whenever it arrives.


But what I really want - when the M1X is out - is a real simulation from Ars or Anandtech of what it would take for Apple to equal the performance of the Xbox Series S and PS5 in an Apple TV. It simply has to be possible, in a much smaller, cheaper package than those two others.

I imagine that Apple can equal the Nintendo Switch with current A-chip tech right now.
Given the rate of annual improvement and the possibility of adding cores as they please, it can't be that far off.
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chucker
 
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2021-10-05, 15:32

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post
I imagine that Apple can equal the Nintendo Switch with current A-chip tech right now
Heh. The CPU in the Switch is roughly on par with that of an iPhone 5s at single-core tasks, although it beats both the 5s and 6 at multi-core tasks.

The GPU fares better, but… the Switch isn’t going to win any awards for performance, nor does it seek to.
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Frank777
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2021-10-05, 16:51

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
Heh. The CPU in the Switch is roughly on par with that of an iPhone 5s at single-core tasks, although it beats both the 5s and 6 at multi-core tasks.

The GPU fares better, but… the Switch isn’t going to win any awards for performance, nor does it seek to.
Why on Earth hasn't someone bought Nintendo and discontinued the hardware already?

If you're terrific at characters and world building and just passable in developing hardware, why not just be a game studio?
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chucker
 
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2021-10-05, 17:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post
Why on Earth hasn't someone bought Nintendo and discontinued the hardware already?

If you're terrific at characters and world building and just passable in developing hardware, why not just be a game studio?
Because performance isn’t everything. I’ve never owned a Nintendo product, but I think their strategy is a winning one. It’s not about splashier graphics, it’s about gameplay. I’ve found that many AAA titles from the past decade are really the same concept washed over and over, and if anything, the recent tech just distracts from what could be a good game (but now there’s no budget left to accomplish that). In contrast, Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit is relatively low-spec but a great concept.

This arguably mirrors a Steve Jobs sentiment as well: you’ve got to start with the user experience, not the technology.

All that said: it’s frustrating that their 2021 OLED model still has the same hardware. It’s getting quite long in the tooth now.

Why not be a game studio? Well, for starters, that’s not a lucrative market unless you’re willing to screw kids over using consumable IAPs. And second, much like Apple, doing the hardware platform gives them control.

Like, literally, this is a lot like Apple of ol’: the hardware doesn’t win any spec contests and is hated by those who care about that, but the software and hardware package that’s the most joy to use.

But Apple has found a way, more or less by accident, to change even that part of the equation.
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Frank777
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2021-10-05, 17:28

Our family are longtime - and still - Wii users.
(I cannot upgrade the Wii as my father's entire circle of friends still compete in Wii Golf tournaments regularly.)

I understand that Nintendo refuses to get into a spec war, but I don't think it's the same as Apple's game.

If Apple ever went as long as Nintendo without upgrading hardware, there would be riots inside Apple Stores. When an Apple machine goes three years without an update, there's no shortage of Mac news site reviews and buyer's guides telling you not to buy it. If a Switch is really iPhone 5-era tech, that's even worse than I thought.

It's fine to put experience over specs - a la Apple - but definitely not cool to be so many generations behind technologically.
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chucker
 
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2021-10-05, 17:56

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post
I understand that Nintendo refuses to get into a spec war, but I don't think it's the same as Apple's game.

If Apple ever went as long as Nintendo without upgrading hardware, there would be riots inside Apple Stores.
Sure.

It all depends on the application.

Like, if the Mac were a machine focused on word processing and spreadsheets (like the Canon Cat from one of the original Macintosh folks, say), you could make the argument that it would do OK if it had the specs of a ca-2010 machine today.

But it doesn't; it has the demands of a broad array of applications, from web browsing to spreadsheets all the way to software development and video production and, for some particularly adventurous people, even games. And as long as we're still in an era where some of those (not exactly spreadsheets) continue to use the latest and greatest specs, well, people will demand that the Mac follow that path.

But for gaming consoles, there's sort of a bifurcation. There's games like Breath of the Wild that could look a bit better with newer specs, sure, but would they be significantly more fun to play? And then there's games that are indeed demanding of high specs, such as VR games.

I.e., I think Nintendo can afford to be a bit of a laggard here, and they know it. As a bonus, they don't just get high margins, but also very reliable, battle-tested chips rather than the latest and greatest which may have flaws and may not be available in massive quantities.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post
When an Apple machine goes three years without an update, there's no shortage of Mac news site reviews and buyer's guides telling you not to buy it. If a Switch is really iPhone 5-era tech, that's even worse than I thought.
Yeah.

(I checked, and it is indeed more favorable for the GPU. It comes close to the specs of the A10, i.e. the iPhone 7.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post
It's fine to put experience over specs - a la Apple - but definitely not cool to be so many generations behind technologically.
I guess in practice, I never really hear about Switch users who feel "boy, that game looks outdated and/or ugly". Which I suppose is a self-selecting bias: if they feel that way, they don't get a Switch.
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turtle
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2022-03-14, 14:03

Apple has release two upgraded flavors of this chip now and we get an idea that they are great from the graphs and stuff. However I decided to do a real work (for me) test and I'm underwhelmed by the M1. I have seen apps open really fast and stuff but I deal in video/images regularly so I did a down convert using Handbreak to compare the M1 in Mrs T's MBP to the i7 in my 2018 mini.

Taking a Blu-ray ripped to .mkv (Christmas Story ) I wanted to reduce the file size on my NAS using Handbreak. I used "Fast 1080p30" for both the i7 and M1. The i7 did the crunch in 50:13 (minutes:seconds) where the M1 did the same in 47:31.

So is the M1 just not the best option for what I'm doing? I have to admit, I was expecting a way faster reduction than I got. Being realistic I though maybe 2/3 - 3/4 of the down convert time. Not even three minutes seems horribly off.

I mean, sure it could be Handbreak, but it is universal so I would assume it would be an even comparison.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
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chucker
 
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2022-03-14, 14:30

Handbrake kind of depends on a lot of parameters. What codec? Is VideoToolbox enabled? Etc.

(As far as the CPU is concerned, it tests better than the Mac mini's i7-8700B in virtually everything. Even though the i7 has more performance cores (6 rather than 4), and on top of that has HyperThreading.)
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turtle
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2022-03-14, 14:41

See, that's why I expected it to be at least 20% faster but it isn't. I get that all the parameters mater, except that they are set the same on both machines. Seems like it would be a like for like test with the CPU being the only real difference. That is the model of mini I'm using CPU and all. I even have 64GB RAM in it which might make a difference, but shouldn't make that much if any since it is really a CPU task.

I will have to verify the codec settings are the same from one install to the other. I assumed the default "Fast 1080p30" would be identical from an Intel install to an M1 given it is Universal but I didn't verify that.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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chucker
 
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2022-03-14, 14:46

I don't really know the status of Handbrake. Maybe some of the ffmpeg stuff is still Rosetta.
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turtle
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2022-03-15, 07:54

Hmmm... hadn't though that it might just be ffmpeg under the hood and it not being Universal.

I should see if there is a brew install version of ffmpeg that is AS only. Then I can do basic ffmpeg only.

Either way, I was just expecting to see a dramatic improvement over the i7 and I just don't see it. I've run the transcode again and few times and it is always the same. Only about 3 seconds difference between the two CPUs.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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turtle
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2022-03-15, 08:33

Ok, so digging around that might just be it. I found this article that talks about someone upgrading from Intel to M1 Max and getting 10x improvement. Now I won't be using a Max, but I should still see some improvement. If not, then I guess I'll be pointed to a Max/Ultra in my next CPU. The change has been implemented into the version of Handbreak I've been using so this shouldn't be the reason I'm seeing slower processing.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
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PB PM
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2022-03-15, 08:51

I know some people have reported issues with M1 chips, likely due to faulty RAM on the Soc. If that is the case performance would take a big hit. Sounded like it only showed up when the system was under heavy loads for the most part, which makes sense. The M1 outperforms 9th gen i7s, so it should crush what your system has.
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turtle
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2022-03-15, 09:54

Well that isn't very awesome at all. I can tell you the fans on the M1 race loud during conversion so clearly it is getting worked out. I need to see if I can find a way to replicate they issue with hard data to test the RAM. I'm guessing something like memtest wouldn't work, but I haven't looked at all yet either.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
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PB PM
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2022-03-15, 10:17

It could still just be an optimization problem, rather than hardware, I haven’t see any handbrake related tests. Unfortunately I don’t know of any memtest like solutions that work for the Mac other than Apple hardware test, and I don’t even know if that exists in a form consumers can access anymore.
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turtle
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2022-05-10, 10:26


Intel showing off their new chip here with the M1 Max being the bottom.

Note the power requirement of these chips!

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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kscherer
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2022-05-10, 10:48

More importantly, note the obviously intentional omission of the M1 Max's power requirement.
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psmith2.0
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2022-05-10, 11:02

Enough people just look at the "longer, better" bars and that's more than enough. Intel - and others - know that. They know better to include/show all the variables. Even Apple will shade their little graphs/charts, but I think they know they don't really need to, such a degree.

It's a certain type of user/mindset that constantly chases their tails over the "biggest, fastest" and are swayed/impressed by such graphics. I've maintained for 15+ years (you can probably find the comments here, and in those AppleInsider threads, prior to 2004) that it's the system/OS I've bought into, and that I would still use a Mac if the processor was a Bic lighter glued inside a Folger's coffee can. Everything's going to get bested/leapfrogged at some point. I'm not changing computers (and platforms) every four months just because of something Intel says they're coming out with.

But for the builders, tinkerers and modders, they eat that stuff up. More power to 'em (literally).

But our stuff, being welded shut with a lightsaber, we're not able to play in that sandbox to such a degree. We buy the Mac that suits us, tricking it out as much as we're able on day of purchase, and then enjoy it for 2-5 (or 11 ) years.

Here's the only thing I kinda wonder/think about...without Apple's efforts on the M1 (and beyond), would Intel being moving forward in such a way? Did it take Apple doing what they did to light a fire or push them a bit harder? Had Apple never announced the move to their own stuff two years ago, what would the Mac w/ Intel situation be like now, May 2022? In other words, was Intel capable of this sort of thing all along and just felt no real push/drive, or have they gone out and hired a bunch of new, aggressive and envelope-pushing engineers and designers in the past 18-24 months, realizing "oh shit..."?

Because we seem to hear/see a lot of this stuff from them now, and really didn't 3-5 years ago. They seem to be flying their flag a little louder and more vigorously today. Is that a result of them realizing "we can't screw around...we're no longer the 800lb. monkey on this stuff? We can't sit on our thumbs and casually dribble stuff out on our timetable"?

What would currently-shipping Macs be using right now had AS never been announced/implemented? Would it be drastically ahead of what Intel was providing in 2019-2020? I don't follow that end of things as much, so I know know...I'm asking.

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2022-05-10 at 11:12.
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chucker
 
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2022-05-10, 13:37

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post

Intel showing off their new chip here with the M1 Max being the bottom.

Note the power requirement of these chips!
Keep in mind that’s only the power for the CPU and Intel’s integrated GPU. These will often be paired with an additional discrete GPU, so that’s another hundreds of watts right there.
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chucker
 
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2022-05-10, 13:51

Quote:
Originally Posted by psmith2.0 View Post
Enough people just look at the "longer, better" bars and that's more than enough. Intel - and others - know that. They know better to include/show all the variables. Even Apple will shade their little graphs/charts, but I think they know they don't really need to, such a degree.
I’m not really sure whom these products are for. Bragging rights?

The H-series is already a niche among laptops. The HX is clearly a niche within a niche. The high end of the H already has such high power requirements that it’s surprising that they bothered to go beyond. You could put these in a NUC (Mac mini-style) or a very unwieldy laptop that’s basically always on AC. But is that a huge market? Why not get a desktop tower with cheaper, beefier, more flexible components?

So, my money is on: mostly bragging rights. Look at what Alder Lake can do (asterisk asterisk asterisk)!

Quote:
Originally Posted by psmith2.0 View Post

But for the builders, tinkerers and modders, they eat that stuff up. More power to 'em (literally).
Eh. These are laptop CPUs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by psmith2.0 View Post
Here's the only thing I kinda wonder/think about...without Apple's efforts on the M1 (and beyond), would Intel being moving forward in such a way? Did it take Apple doing what they did to light a fire or push them a bit harder? Had Apple never announced the move to their own stuff two years ago, what would the Mac w/ Intel situation be like now, May 2022? In other words, was Intel capable of this sort of thing all along and just felt no real push/drive, or have they gone out and hired a bunch of new, aggressive and envelope-pushing engineers and designers in the past 18-24 months, realizing "oh shit..."?

Because we seem to hear/see a lot of this stuff from them now, and really didn't 3-5 years ago. They seem to be flying their flag a little louder and more vigorously today. Is that a result of them realizing "we can't screw around...we're no longer the 800lb. monkey on this stuff? We can't sit on our thumbs and casually dribble stuff out on our timetable"?

What would currently-shipping Macs be using right now had AS never been announced/implemented? Would it be drastically ahead of what Intel was providing in 2019-2020? I don't follow that end of things as much, so I know know...I'm asking.
I would say the short answer is: yes. Apple does put pressure on the competition, but Intel was eventually get out of their Skylake / 14nm rut. The Ice Lake CPUs on some late Macs were already a nice jump; so was Tiger Lake, which Apple never shipped, and finally Alder Lake, which like Apple has a heterogeneous concept of performance cores mixed with efficiency cores.

The longer answer is more complicated because even with Alder Lake, real-world performance varies dramatically depending on thermal constraints, so, if you were to ask “given a form factor roughly like a MacBook Pro, and reasonably heat, noise, battery life, what can Intel actually deliver?”, well, it depends.

(AMD has also been doing poorly. They had a few good years with Zen, but Intel has made serious inroads, and AMD still sucks on power efficiency. What they did accomplish, perhaps, was force Intel to compete on price.)
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kscherer
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2022-05-10, 14:14

I would say that Intel's roadmap played very little role in Apple's plans. I suspect that Apple simply wanted to control the whole pie, but knew they had to do so in a way that made their products faster than Intel's, just so people couldn't constantly play the "Intel is better" card. Apple created their own processor for the iPad at a time when there were alternatives. They used those chips in the iPhone when there were clear alternatives. And they switched the Mac to AS even though AMD and Intel (and Qualcomm, for that matter) offered alternatives.

Silicon on the level of M1 Ultra takes many years to design; it takes many more to develop manufacturing processes; and still more to test and write software for. If I had to bet my nickels, I'd bet that the foundation for M1 Ultra was laid no less than five years ago, which is three years prior to Apple's announcement (Ultra was the goal, but they had to get there in steps). And I wouldn't be surprised at all if the long-term roadmap was drawn up right alongside the A4.

Someone sat down with a napkin (Steve Jobs?) and wrote something like this:

We have chips for our phones, but they aren't as good as we want
We want chips good enough for the upcoming iPad
We also want chips that can best Intel so we can use them in our Macs
We want all the chips
Hire people and get started

The more I watch this thing unfold, the more I realize that AS is all about Apple controlling their own future rather than worrying over whatever Intel is doing. They make engineering decisions so they can make the best products, not so they can "get away from Intel".

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turtle
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2022-05-10, 14:36

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
Keep in mind that’s only the power for the CPU and Intel’s integrated GPU. These will often be paired with an additional discrete GPU, so that’s another hundreds of watts right there.
That thought did cross my mind after posting the graphic. I just forgot to come in and post it.

It is a HUGE point though. Intel is chest beating on one point they can while staying quiet about the whole picture. Really though, the end user is either a Mac or a PC guy in the end. They will typically stay loyal to what they know because they know it.

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chucker
 
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2022-05-10, 14:59

Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherer View Post
The more I watch this thing unfold, the more I realize that AS is all about Apple controlling their own future rather than worrying over whatever Intel is doing. They make engineering decisions so they can make the best products, not so they can "get away from Intel".
Yes and no. If Intel were 40% ahead of Apple in performance per watt, going all-ARM in the Mac wouldn’t be tenable for Apple. They do have to compete, to a point.
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psmith2.0
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2022-05-10, 15:05

Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherer View Post
They make engineering decisions so they can make the best products, not so they can "get away from Intel".
Right, but, in this case, that might be kinda the same thing. If they knew, years ago, nothing they were seeing was matching up with what they wanted/expected, then yeah..."we need to start rolling our own; and we'll know better than anyone how to tailor it to our OS, software, hardware designs, etc.". Seemed a given, with the iPhone and iPad...I just don't know enough about the technical side, but I remember wondering, years ago, "if Apple can make the stuff that runs their phones and pads, will they someday be able to expand that and make stuff that runs their Macs?"

It took a while, but...yeah.

Makes sense to me, speaking as a bit of a thumb-on-everything/finger-in-every-pie control freak myself.
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