tenthousandthings

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tenthousandthings
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  • Early M2 Max benchmarks may have just leaked online

    blastdoor said:
    I've been waiting for a thread to post this in, I guess it can go here. The tl;dr version is there has been one other unusual, long time interval in the past history of Apple Silicon, between the A10 and the A10X, and that is the only case where Apple switched process nodes in between. This fact could indicate that the reason for the similarly long interval between the M2 and the M2Pro/Max (at least) is because of a process node change.

    Below is a history of the A-Series and M-series to date. This is selective, but everything here is accurate and known, not speculative. I don't track every device. For Macs, I only note those that are not transitional. For example, for the M1 I only list the iMac 24" -- every other M1 Mac was transitional. I also track the TSMC process nodes.

    A4 (March 2010) iPad 1 :: iPhone 4
    A5 (March 2011) iPad 2 :: iPhone 4S
    A5X (March 2012) iPad 3 

    A6 (September 2012) iPhone 5
    A6X (October 2012) iPad 4

    A7 (September 2013) iPhone 5S :: iPad Air 1

    A8 (September 2014) iPhone 6 [TSMC 20nm]
    A8X (October 2014) iPad Air 2 [TSMC 20nm]

    A9 (September 2015) iPhone 6S :: iPad 5 [TSMC 16nm]
    A9X (November 2015) iPad Pro 1 [TSMC 16nm]

    A10 (September 2016) iPhone 7 :: iPad 6 :: iPad 7 [TSMC 16nm gen3]
    A10X (June 2017) iPad Pro 2 [TSMC 10nm]

    A11 (September 2017) iPhone 8, iPhone X [TSMC 10nm]

    A12 (September 2018) iPhone XS :: iPad Air 3 :: iPad 8 [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]
    A12X (October 2018) iPad Pro 3 [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]
    A12Z (March 2020) iPad Pro 4 :: Developer Transition Kit [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]

    A13 (September 2019) iPhone 11 :: iPad 9 [TSMC 7nm gen2 "N7P" (P = Plus)]

    A14 (October 2020) iPhone 12 :: iPad Air 4 :: iPad 10 [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 (November 2020) iMac 24" :: iPad Pro 5 [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 Pro/Max (October 2021) MacBook Pro 14" 16" [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 Ultra (March 2022) Mac Studio [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]

    A15 (September 2021) iPhone 13 :: iPhone 14 [TSMC 5nm gen2 "N5P"]
    M2 (June 2022) MacBook Air 4 :: iPad Pro 6 [TSMC 5nm gen2 "N5P"]

    A16 (September 2022) iPhone 14 Pro [TSMC 5nm gen3 "N4"]

    Notice the long time interval between the A10 and the A10X. In every other case (the A6/A6X, A8/A8X, A9/A9X, and A12/A12X), there is one month between the release of the flagship iPhone SoC and the flagship iPad SoC. Only the A10 and A10X have a nine-month gap between them. How is that different from the others? It's the only one with a process node change. Moreover, it's a big jump, from the third generation of TSMC's 16nm node to its new 10nm node.

    The second thing to point out is that all of the M1 SoCs share the same process node. That's currently our only M-series data point, so we can't draw any conclusions, but I've arranged the releases in a way that highlights the fact the M-series has replaced the X variants.

    Next, a lot of speculation has been made about future 3nm TSMC process nodes. But TSMC has two still-upcoming 5nm nodes: gen4 "N4P" (P = Plus) and gen5 "N4X" (X = Extreme). The N4X node is especially intriguing with respect to a new Mac Pro: https://pr.tsmc.com/english/news/2895 -- I don't know about you, but this press release, with its emphasis on HPC, advanced packaging, and "the common design rules of the N5 process," reads like a recipe for M2 Ultra/Extreme SoCs.

    In conclusion: if the past history of the A-series is any indication, the long, likely eight- or nine-month gap between the M2 and the M2 Pro+ probably indicates a process node change. It still seems too early for TSMC's 3nm tech, so that leaves the N4P and N4X nodes. Here's a wild guess for what the end of my list above will look like prior to the start of a new cycle with the M3.

    M2 Pro/Max (March 2023) iMac 24" :: Mac mini 6 :: MacBook Pro 14" 16" [TSMC 5nm gen4 "N4P"]
    M2 Ultra/Extreme (June 2023) Mac Studio :: Mac Pro [TSMC 5nm gen5 "N4X"]
    I had totally lost sight of that process difference between the A10 and A10X. I had pretty much given up hope that the M2 Pro etc chips would be on anything other than 5nm, but you point to a really interesting historical data point! 

    I'm still not very optimistic, though. There was a pretty long gap between the M1 and the M1 Pro/Max, too. 
    Ugh, I forgot another obvious possibility for this hypothetical M2 Pro/Max+ process node change: N4 (already in use for the A16)… 

    I purposely avoided the question of where M2 Pro/Max would be placed in the history, under A15 or possibly under A16. The split between the iPhone 14 (A15) and the iPhone 14 Pro (A16) is unprecedented, so who knows what that means going forward.

    The long gap between the M1 and M1 Pro/Max was likely due to multiple factors—we don’t know the original Apple Silicon release timetable, so we don’t know how long the MacBook Pro 14" 16" launch was actually delayed, not to mention the M1 Ultra and the Mac Studio and Studio Display. 
    watto_cobraradarthekat
  • Early M2 Max benchmarks may have just leaked online

    I've been waiting for a thread to post this in, I guess it can go here. The tl;dr version is there has been one other unusual, long time interval in the past history of Apple Silicon, between the A10 and the A10X, and that is the only case where Apple switched process nodes in between. This fact could indicate that the reason for the similarly long interval between the M2 and the M2Pro/Max (at least) is because of a process node change.

    Below is a history of the A-Series and M-series to date. This is selective, but everything here is accurate and known, not speculative. I don't track every device. For Macs, I only note those that are not transitional. For example, for the M1 I only list the iMac 24" -- every other M1 Mac was transitional. I also track the TSMC process nodes.

    A4 (March 2010) iPad 1 :: iPhone 4
    A5 (March 2011) iPad 2 :: iPhone 4S
    A5X (March 2012) iPad 3 

    A6 (September 2012) iPhone 5
    A6X (October 2012) iPad 4

    A7 (September 2013) iPhone 5S :: iPad Air 1

    A8 (September 2014) iPhone 6 [TSMC 20nm]
    A8X (October 2014) iPad Air 2 [TSMC 20nm]

    A9 (September 2015) iPhone 6S :: iPad 5 [TSMC 16nm]
    A9X (November 2015) iPad Pro 1 [TSMC 16nm]

    A10 (September 2016) iPhone 7 :: iPad 6 :: iPad 7 [TSMC 16nm gen3]
    A10X (June 2017) iPad Pro 2 [TSMC 10nm]

    A11 (September 2017) iPhone 8, iPhone X [TSMC 10nm]

    A12 (September 2018) iPhone XS :: iPad Air 3 :: iPad 8 [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]
    A12X (October 2018) iPad Pro 3 [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]
    A12Z (March 2020) iPad Pro 4 :: Developer Transition Kit [TSMC 7nm gen1 "N7"]

    A13 (September 2019) iPhone 11 :: iPad 9 [TSMC 7nm gen2 "N7P" (P = Plus)]

    A14 (October 2020) iPhone 12 :: iPad Air 4 :: iPad 10 [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 (November 2020) iMac 24" :: iPad Pro 5 [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 Pro/Max (October 2021) MacBook Pro 14" 16" [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]
    M1 Ultra (March 2022) Mac Studio [TSMC 5nm gen1 "N5"]

    A15 (September 2021) iPhone 13 :: iPhone 14 [TSMC 5nm gen2 "N5P"]
    M2 (June 2022) MacBook Air 4 :: iPad Pro 6 [TSMC 5nm gen2 "N5P"]

    A16 (September 2022) iPhone 14 Pro [TSMC 5nm gen3 "N4"]

    Notice the long time interval between the A10 and the A10X. In every other case (the A6/A6X, A8/A8X, A9/A9X, and A12/A12X), there is one month between the release of the flagship iPhone SoC and the flagship iPad SoC. Only the A10 and A10X have a nine-month gap between them. How is that different from the others? It's the only one with a process node change. Moreover, it's a big jump, from the third generation of TSMC's 16nm node to its new 10nm node.

    The second thing to point out is that all of the M1 SoCs share the same process node. That's currently our only M-series data point, so we can't draw any conclusions, but I've arranged the releases in a way that highlights the fact the M-series has replaced the X variants.

    Next, a lot of speculation has been made about future 3nm TSMC process nodes. But TSMC has two still-upcoming 5nm nodes: gen4 "N4P" (P = Plus) and gen5 "N4X" (X = Extreme). The N4X node is especially intriguing with respect to a new Mac Pro: https://pr.tsmc.com/english/news/2895 -- I don't know about you, but this press release, with its emphasis on HPC, advanced packaging, and "the common design rules of the N5 process," reads like a recipe for M2 Ultra/Extreme SoCs.

    In conclusion: if the past history of the A-series is any indication, the long, likely eight- or nine-month gap between the M2 and the M2 Pro+ probably indicates a process node change. It still seems too early for TSMC's 3nm tech, so that leaves the N4P and N4X nodes. Here's a wild guess for what the end of my list above will look like prior to the start of a new cycle with the M3.

    M2 Pro/Max (March 2023) iMac 24" :: Mac mini 6 :: MacBook Pro 14" 16" [TSMC 5nm gen4 "N4P"]
    M2 Ultra/Extreme (June 2023) Mac Studio :: Mac Pro [TSMC 5nm gen5 "N4X"]
    blastdoorroundaboutnowmuthuk_vanalingamFileMakerFellerTheObannonFilewatto_cobraradarthekat
  • Tim Cook casts doubt on new M2 MacBook Pros in 2022

    mattinoz said:
    macapfel said:
    I have been waiting for an M2 iMac - in particular I am curious for some potential design adjustments. Nothing in the rumours mill about that?
    Given the bump hasn't happened to M2 as yet I wonder the iMac and MacMini might move to the M1 Pro instead of the M2. 
    Arguably a better upgrade than the M2 anyway especially given both desktops can run free in terms of power draw and heat the way a laptop/tablet can't and the studio starts with the Max chip so the Pro missing from the Desktop top line up would seem a natural fit. 

    Have the M1 pro as a good and better options available in stores have the M2 Pro as built to order best option. Next year rolls down as M2 and  M3. 

    I would think with a redesign of the mIni internals they could even have the same mainboard for both the Mac mini and iMac24. with the socket of the iMac plugging into a round power supply under it based on the power supply from the Mac Studio. 
    Makes sense, but it doesn’t explain the delay in the iMac and the Mini. The only thing that explains the ongoing delay is they are waiting to introduce the M2 Pro as an option.
    watto_cobramattinoz
  • Tim Cook casts doubt on new M2 MacBook Pros in 2022

    sunman42 said:
    DAalseth said:
    I hadn’t thought about it but I think your analysis is likely spot on. 

    Wasn’t the Mini one of the very first Macs with Apple silicon? It’s definitely due. But then it is the bottom end machine and I was surprised when it got Apple silicon so early. Maybe they figure that it can go longer between updates because it is just the Mini. Whatever the reason, I’ve got new computer fever. I can wait till early next year, (and my bank account would be happier if I did), but I was hoping not to have to. 
    The delay in introducing an up-speced Intel mini between 2014 and 2018 certainly made it appear that the mini was the poor stepchild in Cupertino.
    It did, however, get a shout-out from the CEO in October 2017: "I'm glad you love the Mac mini. We love it too. Our customers have found so many creative and interesting uses for the Mac mini. While it is not time to share any details, we do plan for Mac mini to be an important part of our product line going forward."

    The Mini, let's not forget, wasn't "one of the first" Macs with Apple Silicon, it was the first, in the form of the "Developer Transition Kit" = an A12Z SoC with 16 GB RAM inside a Space Grey Mac mini. The M1 Mini has carried on in that role, I think, as a low-cost way to test Apple Silicon. I got one early on and hooked it up to an old Thunderbolt Display, but that's been replaced now with a Studio Display in a configuration that is pretty much the 27" M1 iMac:


    dewmewatto_cobra
  • Tim Cook casts doubt on new M2 MacBook Pros in 2022

    IMHO, mostly what this means is that the lag between the Mx SoC and Mx Pro/Max+ SoCs is real. As the article points out, it was 11 months between the M1 and the M1 Pro/Max, and we know it was 6 months more for the M1 Ultra. 

    We got M2 in June 2022 and let’s say we get the M2 Pro/Max around March 2023. That’s 9 months between them, more or less, not wildly different from the M1 split. Then let’s say we get the M2 Ultra/Extreme SoCs at WWDC in June 2023 at the 12 month point. So you get a running cycle, with a year between the initial Mx SoC launch and the Mac Studio/Pro SoCs.

    Apple can launch a new cycle when it likes, but once it’s underway, it’s always this year-long progression from the base Mx to the Extreme.

    M3 October 2023
    M3 Pro/Max June 2024
    M3 Ultra/Extreme October 2024

    M4 June 2025
    M4 Pro/Max March 2026
    M4 Ultra/Extreme June 2026

    This lines up neatly with the rumors early on that Apple Silicon would be on an 18-month cycle.
    canukstormAlex1Nstompywatto_cobraFileMakerFeller