Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

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

Apple has launched a new M1 Pro chip for the MacBook Pro, but how does it compare to original Apple M1 processor?

While we haven’t been able to test the new M1 Pro chip just yet, we’ve dug through all of the specs and Apple’s own performance claims to determine which is the best processor for you.

So without further ado, here are the major differences in the Apple M1 vs Apple M1 Pro face-off. 

The M1 Pro is only available in the MacBook Pro

The Apple M1 is currently available in the MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, iMac 2021 and the latest Mac Mini. It’s also powering the newest generation of Apple’s iPad Pro.

The Apple M1 Pro only features inside the new MacBook Pro 2021 laptop. However, it could potentially make an appearance in the likes of the iMac and Mac Mini in the future too. This means that devices powered by the M1 Pro will be significantly more expensive than those with an M1 processor. 

The M1 Pro is faster than the M1

The Apple M1 Pro has been designed as a more powerful variation of the standard M1 chip, helping to boost the performance to a level that satisfies professional creators. 

The M1 Pro features a maximum total of 10 CPU cores, including 8 high-performance cores, and 2 energy efficient cores.

Meanwhile, the M1 only has 8 CPU cores, with an equal balance of high-performance and energy-efficient cores.

Apple M1Apple M1 Pro
High-performance cores48
Energy-efficient cores42
Credit: Bloomberg

With two additional cores compared to the M1, as well as a greater focus on performance over power efficiency, the M1 Pro reportedly offers 70% faster processing speeds.

The M1 Pro can handle high-end graphics workloads

The boost in graphics cores is arguably the most exciting improvement for the M1 Pro. The Apple M1 currently only features a total of 8 GPU cores, whereas the M1 Pro sports 16.

Apple M1Apple M1 Pro
Graphics Cores816

Apple claims the M1 Pro is 2x faster than the M1 chip when it comes to GPU performance, which means you should see faster speeds when completing tasks such as video editing, animation or even gaming.

With all this in mind, it’s best to think of the M1 Pro chip as a more powerful alternative to the M1. If you won’t need the extra graphics firepower that the M1 Pro provides, you’re probably best off sticking with the vanilla M1.

M1 Pro laptops will likely have a shorter battery life 

Since the M1 Pro has fewer energy-efficient cores than the M1, it’s likely that it will see a shorter battery life.

While the 14-inch MacBook Pro has a 70Whr battery, which is larger than the 58.2 Whr cell found inside the 13-inch MacBook Pro, it still lagged behind in Apple’s battery life claims.

The 14-inch MacBook Pro has a battery life of 17 hours for video playback, while the M1-powered 13-inch model can last even longer with 20 hours of stamina. Of course, as the 16-inch MacBook Pro shows, Apple can make up for the worse power efficiency by simply fitting a bigger battery into the laptop.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2003, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.

Trusted Reviews Logo

Sign up to our newsletter

Get the best of Trusted Reviews delivered right to your inbox.

This is a test error message with some extra words