Prior to wide availability, reviews of Apple’s new Mac Studio highlight its exceptional performance and pinpoint exactly where it fits into Apple’s product lineup.
Apple unveiled the second generation of the Mac Studio on June 5, featuring the inclusion of the M2 Max processor to deliver a noteworthy 25% increase in speed. The enhanced performance comes without any changes to the previous model’s design and chassis.
In March 2022, Apple introduced the initial Mac Studio model, which offered configurations equipped with either the M1 Max or M1 Ultra processors. The latest update now presents an enhanced selection, featuring the M2 Max and M2 Ultra processors.
Some of the first reviews of the new Mac Studio have appeared, echoing thoughts similar to those of the first generation reviews. Once again, reviewers praise the new model and point out its performance and expandability with its array of ports.
“Mac Studio has been a breakthrough for pros everywhere, and it’s at the heart of hundreds of thousands of home and pro studios across the world,” said John Ternus, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering. “Today, it gets even better with M2 Max and the new M2 Ultra, featuring even more performance and enhanced connectivity.”
Engadget: Mac Pro who?
A review from Engadget says that the new Mac Studio may even tempt the people who are considering getting the New Mac Pro, writing, “Years ago, some professionals would buy the Mac Pro for its sheer performance, while the internal expansion possibilities were more of an afterthought. The Mac Studio is a system made for them.”
The Mac Studio boasts an astonishing level of power that caters exclusively to the needs of the most demanding users, writes Devindra Hardawar, rendering the PCIe expansion of the Mac Pro unnecessary. Unlike previous reasons to opt for the Mac Pro, such as the ability to add additional RAM in the future, the integrated unified memory alongside the M2 chips eliminates this possibility.
Hardawar ends by saying that even if the built-in storage isn’t enough for some users, “external storage options are fast enough to deal with the demands of a video production shop,” thanks to Thunderbolt 4 and USB 4 on the Mac Studio.
Tom’s Hardware: Not that upgradeable
However, Tom’s Hardware points out that some people who need expansion may not be satisfied with the Mac Studio’s capability for expansion, since the components are not upgradeable. “Those users may want to consider the Mac Pro, which also comes equipped with the M2 Ultra, but in a bigger case that includes PCIe slots to add sound cards, storage cards, and more.”
Andrew E. Freedman ran plenty of benchmarks to test the Mac Studio, and was impressed that the machine was “extremely quiet” during intensive workloads unless he put his ear up against it.
Ars Technica: Best choice for pros
Andrew Cunningham reviewed the Mac Studio and believes it’s Apple’s most compelling professional desktop. Though there is likely still a “tiny audience” for the Mac Studio, the device is more than capable of handling many tasks.