Apple’s all-new Mac Studio desktop computer has arrived. The Mac Studio was introduced during Apple’s “Peek Performance” special event on March 8 after being exclusively disclosed by 9to5Mac. It has M1 Max and M1 Ultra CPUs, a redesigned design, and various networking options.
Below, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of all the features and specifications for Apple’s first all-new Mac desktop brand in years.
The Highlights of Mac Studio
The starting price is $1,999.
Configurations featuring M1 Max and M1 Ultra chips are available.
Unified Memory Up to 128GB
SSDs up to 8TB
Date of publication: Pre-orders begin March 8, with deliveries beginning March 18.
Mac Studio Design
To put it simply, the new Mac Studio’s design resembles a trio of Mac minis placed on top of one another. It has the same physical dimensions as Apple’s famous Mac mini but is noticeably taller to accommodate the cooling system required for the M1 Max and M1 Ultra CPUs within.
Despite being larger than the Mac mini, the Mac Studio offers an amazingly compact design for the amount of power contained therein. Apple claims the computers have a 7.7-inch footprint and a 3.7-inch height. It is made entirely of metal and includes rounded sides and a black Apple logo on top.
It includes an “innovative thermal architecture” with a system of double-sided blowers, as Apple defines it. The back and bottom of the Mac Studio container include over 4,000 holes, which Apple claims helps direct air through the internal components for cooling.
The Mac Studio is available exclusively in silver. Apple also announced new silver-and-black versions of its Magic Keyboard with Touch ID, Magic Mouse, and Magic Trackpad in conjunction with the Mac Studio event. These are intended to be used with the Mac Studio and Studio Display but are offered separately.
Mac Studio Connectivity
The Mac Studio has the most ports and connectivity options of any modern Apple desktop computer. The ports on the rear of the Mac Studio are as follows:
- There are four Thunderbolt 4 ports.
- Ethernet port 10Gb
- Two USB-A connectors
- One HDMI port Headphone jack for professional audio
- Two USB-C ports are included on the front of the Mac Studio for easy access to different connections. These ports provide a USB-C connection at 10Gb/s for Mac Studio setups powered by the M1 Pro Max processor. However, Mac Studio setups with the M1 Ultra offer a 40Gb/s Thunderbolt 4 connection.
Additionally, the front side of the Mac mini features an SD card port. According to Apple, this is a UHS-II SD card slot, which offers data transfer rates of up to 312MB/s.
Finally, the Mac Studio supports a variety of cutting-edge wireless networking stands. WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 are included.
Mac Studio Performance
However, where the Mac Studio truly shines is in terms of performance. Apple offers the Mac Studio two distinct processors: the M1 Max and the M1 Ultra.
The M1 Max was previously featured in the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models introduced in 2021. However, the M1 Ultra is a whole new processor now accessible exclusively in the Mac Studio (as of release date).
The M1 Ultra is simply two M1 processors coupled through Apple’s Ultra Fusion technology. According to Apple, this permits the construction of a semiconductor with 114 billion transistors, the “largest ever in a personal computer chip.”
What type of performance is enabled by this? Apple has some rather remarkable data comparing the M1 Ultra to Intel processors:
- CPU performance is up to 3.8x quicker than the top 27-inch iMac with a 10-core processor.
- CPU performance is up to 90% quicker than the Mac Pro’s 16-core Xeon processor.
- CPU performance is up to 60% quicker than the 28-core Mac Pro.
- Graphics performance is up to 4.5x quicker than the 27-inch iMac and up to 80 percent faster than the fastest Mac graphics card currently available.
- Transcoding video is up to 12x quicker than the 27-inch iMac and 5.6x faster than the 28-core Mac Pro.
- Apple claims that in real-world operation, this M1 Ultra chip can play back 18 streams of 8K ProRes 422 video, which “no other computer on the planet” can do.
Mac Studio Configurations and Price Information
The entry-level Mac Studio, priced at $1999, includes the following specifications:
- M1 Max processor with a ten-core CPU, a twenty-four-core GPU, and a sixteen-core Neural Engine
- 512GB of SSD storage 32GB of unified memory
- The entry-level Mac Studio with an M1 Ultra processor is priced at $3,999 and comes equipped with the following specifications:
- The M1 Ultra processor features a 20-core CPU, a 48-core GPU, and a 32-core Neural Engine.
- 64 GB of consolidated memory
- SSD storage capacity of 1TB
- As is customary, these configurations are essentially interchangeable, and you may upgrade individual features of the Mac Studio but not all of them. The greatest amount of unified memory used is 128GB, whereas the maximum amount of SSD storage that can be used is 8TB.
What Is Included Within the Box?
The Mac Studio comes with a few accessories, like the Mac mini. Regardless of the setup you pick, you’ll receive only the Mac Studio and a power cable in the box.
This means that you must provide your keyboard, mouse/trackpad, monitor, and any other accessories that you may want or desire.
Fortunately, Apple has released a new Studio Display to compliment the Mac Studio, although the lowest configuration choice is somewhat hefty at $1,599.