M3 chips in the center
Just as most had expected from the event, it was naturally the new M3 chips that were in the center. It is the third generation of Apple's own chips, which have gone in and replaced the Intel chips that were the basis for their laptops and desktops in the past.
The new lineup will consist of the M3, M3 Pro and M3 Max. All of them are based on a 3 nm architecture, which is the first time we see it on the PC market. It is the same architecture used in their latest A17 chips, in the latest generation of iPhones.
Together with the new efficient 3nm process, there will also be a good boost to the GPU part of the chip. It now comes with support for hardware accelerated ray tracing, mesh shading and Dynamic Caching.
The last feature is designed to optimize how much memory the system uses during its tasks, and thus of course want to make it all more efficient.
The M3 chip in its basic form comes with four performance cores and four efficiency cores along with up to 10 GPU cores and up to 24GB of RAM.
The M3 Pro comes with up to six performance cores, up to six efficiency cores and up to 18 GPU cores and a RAM max of 36GB.
Finally, there is the M3 Max, which comes with up to 12 performance cores, up to 4 efficiency cores, up to 40 GPU cores and a RAM max of 128GB.
Apple says that you can expect around 15% better performance compared to the M2, and up to 30% compared to the M1. On top of that, there is a good improvement of up to 65% on GPU cores.
New M3 based MacBook Pro
At the event, of course, new hardware was also presented, which comes with the new M3 chips. Centrally, there will be new 14" and 16" MacBook Pro versions with M3 chips.
At the low end, there will be a new entry level MacBook Pro. It is a 14" model that replaces the previous 13" model with M2 chip. The new model does not come with the Touch Bar that was part of the previous model.
The entry level model comes with only 8GB of RAM, which is almost an insult in a new laptop. Especially when you take into account that the price starts at just under 2500$. The jump up to 16GB of RAM will cost an additional DKK 1,800.
The limited hardware is probably a plan to drive sales up to the larger laptops. The upgrade to an M3 Pro based MacBook Pro means that you get 18GB of RAM and here the prices start at just under 3000$ for the 14" version, or just under 4000$ for the 16" version.
The jump up to an M3 Pro based MacBook Pro also opens up the new Space Black color that Apple showed off at their event. It is only available on M3 Pro and M3 Max based systems. Again a very classic Apple move to make a color option exclusive to the more expensive products.
If the leap is to be taken to the large M3 Max chip, then you start with 36GB of RAM and have to pay 5000$ for a 14" version, while you have to pay 5200$ out of pocket for a 16" version.
M3 based 24” iMac
On the desktop front, there was also M3 based new, with new versions of the iMac system. Along with the new M3 chips, there will also be a 4.5K Retina display, a 1080p built-in webcam and WiFi 6E.
There is an option for up to 24GB of RAM and then still in seven different color options. The prices of the new iMacs start at 2000$ for a version with eight CPU cores and eight GPU cores and then again only 8GB of RAM.
There are also new color-matched accessories, such as the Magic Mouse and Magic Keyboard, but despite the new switch to USB C on iPhones, the Lightning connector on the accessories is still a little disappointing. Now enter the battle Apple!
The new M3 based iMacs and MacBook Pro systems can be ordered now and will be available from November 7th.