Apple Mac Studio announced with 4.5x the performance of the 27-inch iMac
Apple has showcased the Mac Studio at today's 'Peek Performance' event, the first machine to launch with the M1 Ultra SoC. Also to be available with the M1 Max, the Mac Studio is effectively a scaled-up Mac mini, which Apple has not refreshed. As we have discussed in our M1 Ultra coverage, the Mac Studio will offer up to 20 CPU cores, 64 GPU cores and 128 GB of unified memory.
However, the Mac Studio will also come with up to 8 TB of storage, Bluetooth 5.0 and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity. Moreover, Apple has equipped the Mac Studio with six Thunderbolt 4 ports, plus two USB Type-A connections. As Apple's marketing images show, the Mac Studio has an SD card reader on its front panel, along with a 10 Gigabit Ethernet connection on its rear, an HDMI port and a built-in power supply. MagSafe has not made an appearance on the Mac Studio, though.
During Apple's presentation, it claimed that the Mac Studio with M1 Max would outperform a 16-core Intel Xeon-powered Mac Pro by 50% while delivering 2.5x faster performance than the Core i9 in the 27-inch iMac. Furthermore, it asserted that the M1 Ultra configuration would achieve 60% and 3.8x improved CPU performance compared to these two machines, respectively.
Similarly, the M1 Max GPU is slated to deliver 3.4x the performance of the Radeon Pro 5700 XT in the 27-inch iMac. By contrast, the M1 Ultra GPU extends this lead to 4.5x. As always, Apple did not provide any details or specifics for its claims.
The Mac Studio will start at US$1,999 with an M1 Max SoC, 32 GB of unified memory and a 512 GB SSD. On the other hand, the Mac Studio will cost US$3,999 for the M1 Ultra edition with 48 GPU cores. Additionally, this configuration will start with 64 GB of unified memory and a 1 TB SSD. In comparison, 128 GB of unified memory will be an US$800 upgrade, with 2 TB, 4 TB and 8 TB SSDs being US$400, US$1,000 and US$2,200 surcharges.
Incidentally, the 64-core GPU version is a US$1,000 upgrade over its 48-core sibling, which means that the Mac Studio tops out at US$7,999. Mac Studio orders will begin shipping on March 18 in the US.