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Apple M1 vs Apple M2: What’s the difference?

Apple has officially unveiled a new Apple M2 chip for the MacBook Air 2022 and 13-inch MacBook Pro laptops, but how does it compared to the preceding M1 processor?

While we haven’t been able to test the M2 chip ourselves just yet, we’ve rounded up all of the specs and performance claims provided by Apple to give you good idea of how it differs to the previous-gen chip.

Keep scrolling to learn everything we know about the M2 chip and what sort of upgrades you can expect it to bring to future Apple products.

Release date

The Apple M1 chip launched back in 2020, debuting inside the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro.

The Apple M2 processor will launch in July 2022, also debuting inside the latest models of the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Specs

Apple has confirmed that the Apple M2 chip will be built upon second-generation 5nm architecture. On paper, that’s not a huge upgrade on the Apple M1 chip, which also uses a 5nm node. However, Apple has still managed to add a whopping 4 billion more transistors to ensure a significant performance boost.

Interestingly, Apple hasn’t increased the core count for the CPU, with both the M1 and M2 sporting an 8-core CPU comprised of 4 performance cores and 4 efficiency cores.

Apple has been more generous with the GPU though, with the M2 sporting up to a 10-core GPU while the M1 maxes out with an 8-core CPU.

Apple also claims the M2 has up to 24GB of LPDDR5 memory. In comparison, the original M1 chip only supports up to 16GB of unified memory.

Performance

What kind of performance is the M2 chip capable of? We only have Apple’s claims to go off right now, so it’s worth taking everything with a pinch of salt for now.

Apple claims the M2 chip is 18% faster when it comes to CPU speeds. Since it doesn’t have any additional cores, this performance bump is likely due to the improvements made to the Apple Silicon architecture.

According to Apple, the M2 chip’s GPU is 35% faster than the M1 GPU. The extra GPU cores have clearly made a big difference here, making the M2 processor a very good option for heavy graphics workloads such as gaming and video editing.

We’ll be updating this article when we’re able to benchmark the M2 chip, so make sure to bookmark this page to find out more.

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