Apple March Event: The M1 Ultra comes to the Mac Studio
The Apple Silicon M2 was expected, but we got the M1 Ultra. And the Mac Studio, a desktop PC that is probably only aimed at professionals.
Although "M1 Ultra" sounds like any smartphone, the new chip from Apple has a lot going for it. It is based on the Apple M1 Max, the system-on-a-chip (SoC) of the most powerful Macbooks.
The M1 Ultra is essentially two M1 Maxes connected together. Apple had planned this from a long time ago and built the M1 Max in such a way that it can be connected to other chips of the same design type. Apple calls this multi-die architecture UltraFusion.
The problem: The M1 Ultra is twice as big as the M1 Max. In return, the chip achieves a lot:
- 800 GB/s memory bandwidth
- Up to 128 GB RAM
- 20 core CPU
- Of which 16 are High Performance Cores
- Of which 4 High Efficiency Cores
- 64 Core GPU
- 4 Video Encode Engines
2 Video Decode Engines
The M1 Ultra is physically two chips, but your Mac will recognize it as one. This means that the machine should be of particular interest to video producers -Adobe After Effects is shown in the video. And it's with the "machine" that Apple is taking its time. After the presentation of the chip comes a presentation of the features. But the computer in which the M1 Ultra is installed is missing.
Mac Studio: Power, but not for home use
In the first image of the Mac Studio, a card reader is fixed, alongside two USB-C ports that are also compatible with the Thunderbolt 4 standard. The whole device is milled from one piece of aluminum and resembles an Apple TV box, it's just thicker. Much of the height is the cooling unit.
In the back, you'll find two USB-A adapters, an HDMI port, a network adapter and a 3.5-millimeter audio jack. Of course, Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth are also available.
In total, you can connect four 4k displays and a 4k TV to the Mac Studio. The Mac Studio comes in an M1 Max configuration and an M1 Ultra configuration. The latter configuration is advertised as having video producer capabilities. Up to 18 Apple ProRes streams can be handled by the Mac Studio without performance degradation, it claims.
The Mac Studio is definitely not a device for private use. The computer is aimed at professionals and those who need completely over-the-top speeds in their daily lives. Video producers, engineers, 3D animators, musicians... These are the ones Apple made the Mac Studio for.
The M1 Max configuration costs from 2199 francs or 2299 euros, the M1 Ultra version sells from 4399 francs or 4599 euros.
Mac Studio Display: A screen, perhaps with a stand
Fittingly for the Mac Studio, Apple has introduced a screen called Mac Studio Display. The specs read like a cross between an iMac and an iPad. Behind the 27-inch screen diagonal hides an A13 Bionic SoC. This chip powers the same 12MP camera you'll find in the iPad. Three microphones should help in video conferencing.
The Mac Studio display resolves in 10-bit color depth at 5K - 14.7 megapixels at 218 pixels per inch - and can be mounted on a stand in Portrait Mode as well as Landscape Mode. At the back of the screen you will find three USB-C ports and a Thunderbolt 4 connector.
The screen costs 1699 francs or 1794 euros upwards.
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