Macs to use ARM chips instead of intel

gsilbers

Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com

Apple is reportedly going to announce its transition from Intel to ARM chips for its line of Macs at WWDC, according to Bloomberg. The event kicks off on June 22nd (hosted virtually this year), and is the usual venue where Apple announces its big platform shifts. This year, we are expecting the unveiling of iOS 14, macOS 10.16, watchOS 7 and more.
 
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gsilbers

gsilbers

Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com
It’s been rumored for a while but seems to be finally going the be announced at the end of the month.


My guess is that it will be used on the MacBook Air first.

And hopefully developers don’t hace to redo every fukin plugin again like in the universal binary days... really don’t wanna go through that again
 

funnybear

Member
This is going to be a bloodbath for developers as the instruction set on an ARM chip is a totally different ballgame compared to an x86 architecture such as Intel or AMD.

For apps that mainly use abstracted low level SDKs that Apple provides that is not an issue (say productivity apps etc.) but for DSP and real time stuff such as DAWs and VSTis this will require huge engineering effort to port over.

Glad I live in the PC world!
 
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gsilbers

gsilbers

Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com
This is going to be a bloodbath for developers as the instruction set on an ARM chip is a totally different ballgame compared to an x86 architecture such as Intel or AMD.

For apps that mainly use abstracted low level SDKs that Apple provides that is not an issue (say productivity apps etc.) but for DSP and real time stuff such as DAWs and VSTis this will require huge engineering effort to port over.

Glad I live in the PC world!
Hopefully they’ll announce how developers do this between versions or porting stuff over in a simple way.
They know there is a lot of small developers out there playing the yearly fee.
 

Cinebient

Active Member
Great for iOS developers maybe and also there is already enough ported stuff from Fabfilter, Eventide, Staffpad, some really good orchestral sounds and synths are already as good as on mac/windows.
Some apps are even better than things i have on my mac.
Also things costs much less there. If Apple bring Logic to ARM i would happy make the switch. Some apps already performs better as on my mac, so ARM might even better for real-time audio apps.
The only thing i really miss on ARM/iOS is a big DAW like Logic. Everything else is already there for me.
 

Shad0wLandsUK

Senior Member
This is going to be a bloodbath for developers as the instruction set on an ARM chip is a totally different ballgame compared to an x86 architecture such as Intel or AMD.

For apps that mainly use abstracted low level SDKs that Apple provides that is not an issue (say productivity apps etc.) but for DSP and real time stuff such as DAWs and VSTis this will require huge engineering effort to port over.

Glad I live in the PC world!
From what I understand about this world (Windows - IT Systems Admin/Applications Support and a little Linux here)

I notice that there are lots of applications, platforms and systems coming out that are able to run ARM on either emulation or through the x86_x64 framework... so I think Apple would have learned their lesson from PowerPC (yes everyone raise your hand)!

So, I believe there is greater support for transition and migration here, in terms of coding and platform development? Correct me if I am wrong... after all I am not a developer :)
 

gh0stwrit3r

Active Member
I'm quite a noob on this subject. So hopefully someone could me some clarity about the chips :)

Currently I'm looking forward to upgrade to a new iMac. Rumors are that the new line-up will be announced and shipped soon, but I guess still with an Intel (10th gen I hope). I'm eyeing on that iMac for quite a while, but is it a good buy knowing Apple will take a jump towards using its own chips.

Is this something to be concerned about?
 

gtrwll

Active Member
I'm quite a noob on this subject. So hopefully someone could me some clarity about the chips :)

...

Is this something to be concerned about?
I think a comparison would be that someone changes the engine from a car working with gasoline to an engine working with diesel. It’s gonna take some work to rework some of the parts to work in the new system (clarification: I’m not a car mechanic :grin:)

It’s a different architecture than what they’ve used before, so I would be very, very surprised if there would be no problems along the way.
 
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gsilbers

gsilbers

Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com
I'm quite a noob on this subject. So hopefully someone could me some clarity about the chips :)

Currently I'm looking forward to upgrade to a new iMac. Rumors are that the new line-up will be announced and shipped soon, but I guess still with an Intel (10th gen I hope). I'm eyeing on that iMac for quite a while, but is it a good buy knowing Apple will take a jump towards using its own chips.

Is this something to be concerned about?

Maybe wait until the end of june to see the announcements. maybe new imacs will come out.

apple already went through a chip change with universal binary. from powerpc (made by ibm) to intel. so if you look into that history maybe it can help.

im sure apple learned from this so they are takign into account poeple that bought and will buy mac pro dekstops that last 10 years or more.

my guess is that it will be used on macbook airs and lower tier more portable /laptops since thats the main point of Arm chips. trying to compete with chromebooks and such.
 
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gsilbers

gsilbers

Part of Pulsesetter-Sounds.com
im betting the future of apple is ipadOS. its seems to be a good balance between mac os and ios.

but eventually will change to AppleOS on powefull ARM chips and this way documents, apps etc will be cross compatible and developers can just do one app for every device.
and also apple will not fall under the apple to apples comparison using the same intel chips.

ill check this post in 8years and see if it went that way :)
 

nolotrippen

Active Member
I'm quite a noob on this subject. So hopefully someone could me some clarity about the chips :)
Is this something to be concerned about?
I'm guessing you're not such a noob that you don't have a DAW and plugins that are already working under Intel and OSX. I had to buy a new iMac last year and there were no hiccups except Catalina which I avoided. So, what will be the hiccups be under a new processor and getting developers up to speed? It could be a real pain and take a while and you're sitting there without a new Mac!

My two bits, buy the best machine you can now and use for years to come.
 

Ivan M.

Member
This is going to be a bloodbath for developers
that's common :)

instruction set
That's probably not a big deal, as 99.99% stuff is done above assembler. There's also a so called accelerate framework with optimized math and routines.

DSP and real time stuff such as DAWs and VSTis
That's where apple's audio frameworks are used, and where the real pain is, as documentation is almost non existent
 

Shad0wLandsUK

Senior Member
that's common :)



That's probably not a big deal, as 99.99% stuff is done above assembler. There's also a so called accelerate framework with optimized math and routines.



That's where apple's audio frameworks are used, and where the real pain is, as documentation is almost non existent
And people say that I am a big ol' geek... I guess they don't know ---> this guy ;)
 

Nick Batzdorf

Moderator
Moderator
Is this something to be concerned about?
It does sound like they're coming out with a new iMac in the somewhat near future.

I believe it this time.

What confuses me is all the talk here a few weeks ago about how Apple couldn't possibly be coming out with a machine that supersedes the $50,000 Mac Pro, that ARM processors aren't as powerful, etc.
 

funnybear

Member
That's probably not a big deal, as 99.99% stuff is done above assembler. There's also a so called accelerate framework with optimized math and routines.
Instruction sets are unique to each CPU architecture and when you code in C++ or other high level languages (C++ is the most common for DSP work) your code is written against an available instruction set that your C++ compiler has access to and your code is optimized for.

AVX, SSE and MMX are some of the more common instruction sets used in DSP coding (they are all unique to the x86 architecture).

Note that architectures having "different" sets is not saying that they are "better" compared to other CPU architectures. It is not a question if you can port something but rather with how much effort (assuming that the new target CPU architecture offers you enough computational headroom with or without an alternative instruction set).

For example NI's Massive X VSTi requires a CPU that supports the AVX instruction set. So if NI will port the plugin, they will need to check if Apple's new ARM based chips provide an alternative instruction set to replicate the AVX based code and if not, will only be able to port the plugin if the chip has enough headroom using non-optimised code.
 
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