Everything Apple announced at ‘Scary Fast’ Mac M3 event

Apple Scary Fast M3 event
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At its Halloween-themed ‘Scary Fast’ event, Apple doubled down on its in-house silicon, unveiling upgraded Mac devices powered by the new M3 generation.

Broadcast live to the world, the pre-recorded presentation emphasised how adept Macs are at handling hard work. After an eerie night flyover shot of Apple Park, Apple CEO Tim Cook emerged from foggy surrounds to introduce the new range of devices aimed at enabling “the best work of our lives.”

After the recent launch of the iPhone 15, this event solely focused on Mac computers. Since launching the M1 system on a chip (SoC) in 2020, Apple has moved further and further away from the Intel hardware previously found in its computers. Today, the tech giant shared its intent to push computing tech further. Here’s everything Apple announced during the presentation.

New M3 generation of chips to power Apple Mac

In a big move for Apple, it announced three new SoCs at once: the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max. Labelled “the most advanced chips for a personal computer”, the M3 range provides faster and more efficient performance. Up to 128GB of unified memory and 40 GPU cores indicate that Apple is swinging for the fences.

Arguably the biggest change between generations is in the graphics department. Said to be the “largest leap forward” on an Apple chip, the GPU includes several major additions to its architecture. Dynamic Caching more efficiently allocates memory to tasks, and hardware-accelerated ray tracing comes to Mac for the first time.

It was only earlier this year that Apple launched the M2 Pro and M2 Max chips, so the latest hardware has come thick and fast. Combined with a big push to make Mac a gaming platform, the M3 series looks to wield even more graphical power in a versatile SoC.

24-inch iMac M3 refresh

Billed as Apple’s all-in-one computer slash display, the iMac is one of the first devices to use an M3 chip. For now, only the 24-inch iMac gets the upgrade, fitted with the base-level M3. It jumps from the M1 platform to the latest hardware, with up to 24GB of memory, an eight-core CPU, and 10 GPU cores.

On the outside, it’s still a slim and colourful 4.5K display. It’s what’s on the inside that counts, after all. Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 come as standard features now, meaning faster wireless connections with reduced latency.

As is tradition with Apple announcements, there’s minimal delay between the reveal and availability. The M3 iMac is available to order now ahead of next week’s release.

MacBook Pro laptops also get the M3 treatment

Less than 12 months after launching the M2 Pro and M2 Max MacBook Pro laptops, Apple revealed M3 equivalents. In the same 14 and 16-inch variants, you can get a MacBook Pro in M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max flavours.

As alluded to earlier, an M3 Max MacBook Pro can house up to 128GB of unified memory in addition to a 40-core GPU. That’s a staggering amount of power in a laptop. It also comes in a sleek Space Black finish, which is more of a very dark grey, but it still looks cool. Similar to the iMac upgrade, there’s not much else in terms of new hardware features, just an overall performance boost.

When compared to the M2 Pro and M2 Max versions, the M3 MacBook Pro laptops start at $300 more expensive. Although this is unlikely to deter the high-end users primed as the laptops’ main audience, it still stings when everything else also costs more. 3D modellers and video editors will benefit from the GPU enhancements, while gaming on a Mac draws closer to a mainstream reality.

You can watch a full replay of the Scary Fast presentation via Apple’s YouTube channel for further details. Battles over whose silicon reigns supreme will take place in the coming months, with the Intel Core Ultra appearing to bring an Apple-like design to Windows PCs.

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