Apple confirm worst kept secret

Discussion in 'Apple/iOS' started by doobiedoobiedum, Jun 22, 2020.

  1. desertlap

    desertlap Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I went in to more detail in the end is near thread, but I want to point out again that the a12z is not what will be in shipping ARM MBP and iMacs.

    Apple has already said they will be optimized and specific for their intended use eg. a laptop chip will be different than the iPhone chip. If I was to guess it will something like the difference between a 5 watt core y and a 45 watt core I on the intel side.

    PS: Apple did something like this before with the switch to intel. The chip in the developer MacBooks was much lower performance than what was in the released MacBooks.

    Apple is merely providing a reference dev platform to get started.

    PPS; To paraphrase for technology, there are lies, damned lies, and benchmarks!
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
  2. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    I guess I'll have to accept the fact that I don't know enough about benchmarking to make sense of this.. :oops: Anyway, carry on! :cool:
     
  3. sonichedgehog360

    sonichedgehog360 AKA Hifihedgehog Senior Member

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    Sorry because I was unclear. This is the A12Z (as found in the latest iPad Pro) running iOS with single and multi-threaded scores in Geekbench 5:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This is the A12Z dev kit in macOS with the Rosetta 2 emulation layer. There is a drop of 25-35% and 30-40% in performance for single- and multi-threaded tests in Geekbench 5:

    [​IMG]

    That performance happens to be roughly on par with the Surface Pro X in the same round of tests in Geekbench 5 in Windows (edit: non-emulated):

    [​IMG]

    So I would wager Microsoft, while unemulated, is in a strong position performance-wise here with their almost year-old device Surface Pro X. Mind that their first "custom" silicon from Qualcomm is really just a slightly overclocked chip Snapdragon 8cx, which has roots, I believe, in the 855. It also did not have any razzmatazz of extra cores that Apple puts in their iPad A series processors.

    That means the 8cx now isn't even the latest and greatest from Qualcomm by today's standards, whose current flagship is the 865 and is a fair bit faster. That leaves Microsoft with plenty of growing room for the Surface Pro X 2 and its next processor, both from simply a new processor architecture and from more semi-custom design elements especially a larger core count.

    Also in their favor and defense, Microsoft has the expertise and support in the corporate niche that Apple is nowhere close (yet) to fully replicating in scope or intensity. Apple can tout their silicon can do this or that in running circles around the competition in special scenarios, but they lack that key component of familiarity and resources in corporate that puts them at a distinct disadvantage to the Microsoft juggernaut.

    Basically, take how Intel has an advantage at helping PC makers to design, integrate, and advertise their products every step of the way that AMD still does not. Multiply that difference by a factor of 10 or so here in describing Microsoft's advantage in catering to the specific and exotic needs of their corporate clients compared to Apple and that is where Microsoft stands for corporate support and expertise.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
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  4. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
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  5. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    ...and here is another comment from that thread which shows me that I have a lot more to learn:
     
  6. desertlap

    desertlap Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Yes the whole discussion is A LOT more complicated than just simple basic emulation.

    We are just learning and experimenting and I'm forbidden by NDA from speaking specifically, but generally...

    The more an app makes use of newer Mac OS Frameworks like Metal, the better the unoptimized performance. For instance- one of our device control apps runs without any changes by us at all at about the same speed as the last MacBook system.

    OTOH The more the app uses it's own "custom" code and libraries the slower it runs and in some cases not at all.

    Additionally we've seen things like apps that do a lot of floating point calculations are slower, but those that do integer calculations take little hit or may even run slightly faster due to the differences in performance differences between intel (which excels at floating point calculations) and ARM (integer ops)

    And of course a lot of apps contain a mix of floating point and integer ops

    Can't name names, but a couple of utilities show the difference quite sharply. The audio format utility, to convert FLAC files to mp3 (integer) is nearly as fast as it is on a MBP where as a video file conversion utility such as Mp4 conversion (floating point)will try anyones patience.

    PS: this is also why you are seeing some talk about it being more like a "wrapper" which is the code that gets created around an existing x86 binary at install time by the ARM Mac OS and additionally why a lot of the small apps cerated by individuals will be hit and miss performance wise or might not run at all.

    Apple did give developers one huge help with all this, when you install an x86 based app, the system creates a "manifest" for lack of a better term of exactly the stuff that gets unconverted and thus what developers need to focus on to become native.

    EDITED: To fix typos
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
  7. desertlap

    desertlap Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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  8. doobiedoobiedum

    doobiedoobiedum Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The first ARM Mac will be the Macbook Air refresh - the "Air" name may go and it will simply be a Macbook.

    Forbes suggests it will just use the A12z processor - more powerful processors will power the Macbook "Pro" lines.

    Article repeatedly uses the "benchmarking" comment but knowing most current Air users I know tend to be students running Photoshop* / writing essays and using Facetime, it makes sense.

    *Student use of Photoshop is not the same as a Graphic Design or illustration pro using Photoshop with thousands of layers, filters etc etc. or even a video editor using a more powerful Macbook pro

    For me, I am interested to see who wins out in the next stage regarding Adobe vs Affinity - Affinity already have a single purchase App that runs on iOS which will be supported by the new "Macbook" while Adobe promises, promises, promises.......
     
  9. darkmagistric

    darkmagistric Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The original point of the Macbook Air was to make a lighter and more portable Macbook. But with the current gen Macbook Pros being nearly as thin and light as the current Airs, I've felt the Air line was increasingly becoming irrelevant so I'm not surprised if they do abduct or eliminate the Air brand for the time being. But I think going back to just "Macbook" would be overall preferable. And consolidating the line to just "Macbook" for Arm, and "Macbook Pro" for Intel would make it easier for the transition period for the less tech inclined.
     
  10. thatcomicsguy

    thatcomicsguy Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    I just spent a couple of hours running through the latest trial version of Affinity Photo.

    It's good. I'm quite surprised. -I even worked out how do to text flowing around objects. (It's a bit of a hack since they really want you doing that sort of thing in their publisher package, but I'm doing a project with lots of text mixed with art right now and it's super handy to have it all in one place.)

    I'm going to do a few pages in AP and see. If I can cancel my PS subscription, that would be pretty cool. (Though, in a bitter sweet way. PS has been a part of my work life for more than 20 years!)


    ****************EDIT

    Holy cow! Affinity Photo is BUGGY.

    It's having a lot of trouble recognizing right clicks from my stylus. -I couldn't tell if I was going nuts or if my pen was broken or what.

    My stylus works as expected in every other application and on the desktop, but AP is ka-razy. It pops up random menus at right click, or (usually) not at all. It's really weird.


    **************EDIT 2

    It's a known issue. You can turn off Windows Ink in the preferences and that solves the right click problem.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2020 at 3:42 AM

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