Apple announces M1 Ultra, its most powerful computing chip yet

Apple announces M1 Ultra, its most powerful computing chip yet

Apple recently launched the M1 Pro and the M1 Max chips alongside its new MacBook Pro notebooks. Now, the company is taking things to a whole new level with the new M1 Ultra chip. The M1 Ultra is said to be the most powerful variant of the original M1 chip that debuted a couple of years ago. The new M1 Ultra chip is going to be powering the new Mac Studio desktop computer.

According to Apple, the M1 Ultra uses the company’s UltraFusion architecture, effectively fusing two separate M1 Max chips into a single SoC. Yes, it’s essentially a combination of two M1 Max chips offering 128GB of unified memory. The M1 Ultra packs 114 billion transistors and features 800GB/s of memory bandwidth and 2.5TB/s interprocessor bandwidth. The M1 Ultra, in case you are wondering, is a 20-core processor with 16 high-performance cores and 4 high-efficiency cores.

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The new M1 Ultra chip also has a 32 core Neural engine and a 64-core GPU to power through even the most demanding tasks. Apple says the new chip offers up to eight times faster GPU performance compared to the M1 chip. It’ll be interesting to see how it comes to the M1 Max chip, though.

Here’s a quick look at the features the new Apple M1 Ultra brings to the table:

Apple M1 Ultra features

The new M1 Ultra chip also features support for hardware-accelerated H.264, HEVC, ProRes, and ProRes RAW. All that is being handled by two video decode engines, four video encode engines, and four separate ProRes encode/decode engines. As is the case with every new Apple chip, the M1 Ultra also offers industry-leading performance per watt. The new M1 Ultra chip can deliver more performance while using as much as 100W less power. Since Apple didn’t exactly mention any competing chips, this is something we’ll have to put to test once we get our hands on the new machines powered by this particular chip.

Apple M1 Ultra comparison to M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max

The new M1 Ultra chip, as we mentioned earlier, will debut in a Mac Studio desktop that Apple is announcing alongside the new chip. We expect this new chip to eventually make its way to other devices, though. In addition to the new chip and the Mac Studio, Apple has also announced the new iPad Air with M1 chip, and a couple of other interesting products.

About author

Karthik Iyer
Karthik Iyer

Karthik covers PC hardware for XDA Computing. When not at work, you will find him yelling at his monitors while playing video games.

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