Apple Mac goes ARM with BIG SUR

i never was an apple user and probably won’t ever be one but i find the transition to ARM kind of exciting. the x86 monoculture was really getting boring.

now if only something similar happened with an open RISC-V design… :slight_smile:

Yeah while AMD recently is on a good track.
It took them quite some tries and years.
A lot of their previous designs were failures.

Now the threadripper is killer. But sometimes I am curious if that is the best design too?
Sooner or later this also might run into the same technical / material issues Intel has too.

I think the problem is that right now there aren’t many players that can customize ARM the way Apple can. They don’t have the resources, the expertise or the license required. They would have to rely on the likes of Qualcomm. I know there have been some headway in the server space but how does that translate to the PC/Consumer space?

Yeah it took Apple around 10 years to arrive where they are right now and a massive R&D budget.

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Currently only MS is offering something Arm-related like Apple

Could do for an interesting match, thou I think Apple is going to win. At least, because they’re investing a lot of money in it…

MS seems not have learned from the first windows RT fiasco. What I find most shocking is the bad battery. ARM tech is in theory a very battery friendly platform in its current form.

I do own two surface products and the concept is in general pretty good when you use it for modeling and 2D sketching.

I was surprised to see that Apple did not mention windows running on their ARM hardware even through it is 64 bit for ARM and should run at least in a VM.

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The patches are here:
https://developer.blender.org/T78710

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Cool. I’ll be curious to see what this entails.

Me not be a programer and just glancing at the commit notes, it looks like a port to ARM and nothing more. Or are there future implications for Metal?

That’s right.

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but what does this mean? there were working ARM builds of blender before that. did they require some manual changes before building and now there is an official patch which makes this work out of the box?

i guess if the apple transition turns out to be a success maybe players like qualcomm will give it a try too with mainboards + cpus for pcs?

They had to compile the libraries for ARM. Besides that, there are plenty of adjustments in Cycles to make sure it uses CPU accelerations.

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There were builds for ARM Linux. This is a patch for ARM macOS.

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Hi, working on Blender for ARM starts:

https://developer.blender.org/rB9b9cbabd96f5f3c8911c3670cd8ddd6789619c1a

Even I am not an Apple fan it would be nice if Blender for ARM is ready before Mac ARM systems are shipped.

Cheers, mib

I am not an Apple fan but prefer macOS hahaha.

So this is actually some good news.

I am still curious about the future of Blender openGL UI and if the UI would actually be ported to Metal too.

And then there is the big GPU question …

Hi, there he (Stefan Werner) go again:

https://developer.blender.org/rB52d469531b1ec1ea237b1b40a5e8dcbe06eb5c4c

Cheers, mib

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I am not sure about those Youtube people

He makes a claim that metal API and optimisation helped speed up significantly

I agree with almost everything he said in that video except about the Mac Pro.

I expect the Mac Pro will move over to Apple Silicon too and with integrated Apple GPUs but they’ll use multiple SOCs in the Mac Pro to get the high core counts for the CPU and multiple GPUs. Apple’s desktop SOCs are said to be very different to their mobile SOCs so expect the new Apple Silicon Macs to be a step forward from where current Intel Macs are even those with dGPUs.

If the Mac Pro had two or four SOCs it’ll have two or four GPUs which is far more likely than Apple creating a single powerful PCIe based GPU for the ridiculously small Mac Pro market. It would be incredibly expensive to produce on such a small production run even if their Arm silicon is cheap to make.

Also GPUs on PCIe buses is everything they’re trying to avoid with their new strategy.

I don’t think Apple will update the Mac Pro one final time with Intel or AMD hardware, if there is another Mac Pro it’ll be Apple Silicon based and will be very different to the cheesegrater of 2019. There’s a chance the Mac Pro may be retired and the iMac Pro is the highest end Mac Apple will sell, only time will tell.

Good points actually

I think many assume the new macs will be iPad chips in a Mac which will not be the case

Only the instruction set will be the same.

The 2019 Macpro is still very good also when some say you can get it for cheaper as a self made pc. Commercial alternatives are equally priced.

Those machines will work for quite some time before they get replaced.

The 2019 Macpro has a very smart cooling system which with Apple silicon you don’t need so if there will be a Macpro it will be quite different.

they can’t cheat the laws of physics. that arm cpus will consume much less power when performance is comparable to desktop x86 chips (at the same node size) will have to be seen. i would be very surprised if there was much difference. a little maybe. :slight_smile: