Benchmarks for Apple’s unannounced but almost certainly real M2 Max have appeared in Geekbench results (opens in new tab), which shows a 12-core processor running at 3.54GHz and backed by 96GB of RAM. The rumored chip, which would be used in forthcoming MacBook Pro and Mac Studio models, offers a slight increase in performance over the existing M1 Max if the Geekbench run is accurate.
The Geekbench 5 results are for a ‘Mac14,6’ computer running on unreleased macOS 13.2 software. It manages a single-core score of 1,853 and a multi-core score of 13,855. If accurate, this is a little disappointing, as an eight-core M2 MacBook Pro hits (opens in new tab) 1,899 in the same single-core benchmark. However, the greater number of cores in the M2 Max machine sees it pull ahead in the multi-core ranking, with the M1 scoring 8,737 (5,000 points behind). However, all the M-class Macs trounce an Intel iMac from 2020, with that machine’s Core i7-10700K at 3.8GHz scoring (opens in new tab) 1,250 in the single-core test and 8,157 in the multi-core.
A report from Taiwan’s DigiTimes (opens in new tab) claims Apple will move from the M2’s current 5nm TMSC process to a 3nm node for the M2 Pro. Of course, Apple hasn’t announced this development, but manufacturing capacity at TSMC was reportedly booked by Apple back in the summer.
The previous generation M1 chips were eventually available in four guises: vanilla, Pro, Max and Ultra, with the upper-level chips having more cores and beefier GPUs. While the Mac mini, iMac, MacBook Air, a few MacBook Pros and the iPad Pro got basic chips, most MacBook Pros come with a choice of M1 Pro or M1 Max (opens in new tab), with the new Mac Studio (opens in new tab) able to be specced with an M1 Ultra (opens in new tab), which is two M1 Pro chips stuck together. While the M1 has eight or 10 CPU cores, the differences between the chips are mainly expressed in the number of GPU cores and the amount of RAM in the package.
It’s not unreasonable to expect M2 to go the same route, and while so far we’ve only seen M2 in the 2022 MacBook Air (opens in new tab) and a single MacBook Pro model (as well as an iPad Pro), we expect the processor to make its way through the entire Mac computer range, even perhaps infiltrating the Mac Pro, which is still an Intel-only zone.