From Sean Hollister’s “How fast are Apple’s new ARM Mac chips? It’s hard to tell” posted Tuesday on The Verge:
The company’s press release says very specifically that Apple’s new chips will “give the Mac industry-leading performance per watt,” and that’s a very deliberate turn of phrase. Apple’s arguing that by building the most efficient kind of chips it can — “the highest performance with the lowest power consumption” — it can achieve more raw performance by tipping the scales of that performance-per-watt formula toward more watts.
In other words, if you build a MacBook Pro-sized chip with a MacBook Pro-sized heatsink and enclosure, plus a MacBook-sized battery, your iPhone-esque processor theoretically has room to do a heck of a lot more work. But it’s almost always been true that ARM-based processors are more efficient than the competition, and the scales don’t tip on their own. Speeding up a chip isn’t just a simple matter of giving it more juice — you’ve got to design a beefy enough processor (or, say, the world’s fastest supercomputer) around that efficient architecture, and Apple isn’t bragging that it’s actually done that yet.
My take: Smart. I never think about the heatsink until my laptop is too hot for my lap.
P.S. “… the scales don’t tip on their own.” Words to live by.