Chris recently picked up an M1 MacBook Air. He did a data migration, and it crashed and never recovered. So he took it back to the Apple Store, and they fixed it. But what he wants to know is if he can now add a second monitor and how. Leo says that there's a single port on the MacBook Air, and you need an HDMI to USBC dongle to connect the monitor to the system. Leo got a Thunderbolt 3 dock from Anker, which is $250. So that's not cheap.
John thinks he could upgrade his 10-year-old MacBook Pro to make it faster. Leo says those older ones were great because users could upgrade the RAM and hard drives. Nowadays, they're soldered in. But even though he can upgrade it, he won't be able to run the latest OS on it. Is the M1 Mac Mini a good deal at $599? Leo says yes. It's a great machine. He can use a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard when starting up, but it works best with an Apple brand. Leo says that he will be very happy with the M1. It's massively faster and at $600, it's a good deal. What about 16GB of RAM?
Scott's wife is going to take her Covid relief check to upgrade her laptop. What MacBook should she get? Leo says that in terms of performance, the iPad Pro is in the same class. But she could be limited in terms of software. So it depends. The three Apple M1 Macs all have the same processor running at the same speed. The MacPro has a fan, but the Air doesn't. That's really the only difference. But for portability, the Macbook Air will be an excellent choice. She can't beat the 20-hour battery life. HOWEVER, there is going to be a new Mac event coming in a few weeks.
Leo says that Apple has been working overtime to make sure their new M1 Macs are able to support apps that could've been left behind with the shift to the Intel platform. The result is a platform that is much faster, with fantastic battery life. So fast, that Leo says M1 is going to change the computer world as we know it. Sadly, Apple will likely keep M1's architecture for themselves, as their "secret formula for coca-cola."
Leo's advice for upgrading: if you're a PC user, get the cheapest M1 you can to buy into the ecosystem. The road will be dramatic as time goes on.
Will is ready to buy a new Mac Mini with the M1 Apple Silicon processor. He wants to use it for photography. What monitor should he get? Leo says to avoid the Apple XDR display. It's just too damn expensive. The Mac Mini supports Thunderbolt and HDMI, so it can drive many models. Dell makes some really nice monitors for 200-300, but their UltraSharp line would be similar to Will's old iMac. You can get a 27" Dell UltraSharp for $359.
This past week at their "One More Thing" event, Apple officially announced three new Macs containing their new in-house Apple Silicon processors. The new M1 processor promises high performance at low power. Apple announced three new models, two laptops and one desktop. The models include a new 13" Mac Air, new 13" Macbook Pro, and a new generation Mac Mini. But this doesn't mean that Apple has completely abandoned the Intel platform.
Apple announced their M1 based Apple Silicon Mac laptops this week, including the 13" Mac Air, 13" Mac Pro, and the Mac Mini. Leo says it's the first generation, and that's causing many to wait. Leo also says that RAM is limited to 16GB because it has been wired into the logic board. Called Unified Memory Architecture, it's known to be faster. So maybe we don't need as much RAM moving forward as we think.
Apple is having another event on November 10th, and it will be about laptops centered on its upcoming Apple Silicon design. Based on the ARM processor, Apple has designed their chips to operate at lower power and with a more streamlined instruction set.
Dave wants to know why Apple is switching away from Intel. Leo says that Apple is moving on from Intel because they can't provide low power, high performing chips that Apple wants. The reason is that the development of processors by Intel has been stalled at 10nm, while Apple has gotten very good at developing ARM chips that are just as powerful for their mobile platforms (they are 5nm now).
Kevin wants to know about the recent MacBook. Should he go ahead and buy or wait until the new Apple Silicon models come out? Leo says that the current MacBook Pro is very nice with a 16" screen. But if you can wait, he would. The new Apple Silicon models will be fantastic since they're based on the iPad Pro chips running right now. So the hardware is field-tested and it won't take long for the intel Macs will be a bit dated. However, if you can't wait, Leo says that the Intel platform will be supported for several years. But if you can wait, Leo says you should. He is.