The graphics performance of the Apple M1 is like a Radeon RX 560X, better than the Intel Iris Xe G7

by David Posted on 17 nov 2020, 19:20:00

Apple has delivered the first units of its new Mac with its own processor, the M1, and it will not leave anyone indifferent. It is manufactured at 5 nm by TSMC and inside there are 16 billion transistors, and compared to the A14 chip this M1 contains four major Firestorm cores, four minor Icestorm cores, and an integrated eight-core graphics unit. In the computing part it is around 50% more powerful, but in the graphic section it is more than doubled.

The design of the chip you have below, and you can also see the sixteen cores of the neural engine for artificial intelligence calculations, which is a unit that should not begin to be lacking in desktop computers. The operating frequency of the cores is 3.2 GHz, and the iGPU, according to my deduction from Apple’s data, is composed of eight cores of their own architecture, with 128 execution units or 1024 shaders running at 1270 MHz. That means 64 texturing units and 32 raster units.


Based on graphics performance data from AnandTech, the power would be around the Radeon RX 560X, which beats Intel’s Iris Xe G7 and AMD’s Radeon Graphics 8 as an integrated graphics unit. Which, for a new entrant in the desktop processor space, is not bad at all. The question is how this architecture will scale —Of I advance that surely enough well- to be able to cover with it the power from the simple MacBook Air to the Mac Pro. In less than two years it will be known.

The best test in games so far is the one indicated in Rise of the Tomb Raider, outperforming a Radeon RX 560X laptop, which is actually like the Radeon RX 560 desktop, so the comparison is quite valid. Considering that the M1 is running the game through Rosetta 2, the results are even more impressive. It reaches 39.6 f / s on average at FHD and very high quality with the FXAA activated. Compared to other graphics cards used in Mac, it is 50% faster than the Radeon Pro 560 in the MacBook pro from 2017. Its consumption in GFXBench Aztec It sits at around 17W, making it a good value for an iGPU of this power.

The funny thing about this is that to outperform the Radeon Pro 5600M in the MacBook Pro 16 you only need two M1s stuck. Come on, double the larger cores, double the iGPU cores, and the size won’t be much more than double the M1.

Below you have the summary of characteristics of several graphics cards, integrated and dedicated.

Graphics card comparison
M1 (iGPU) Radeon RX 560X Iris Xe G7 Radeon Graphics 8
Company Apple AMD Intel AMD
GPU Polaris Xe-LP Vega
GPU variant Polaris 11 Xe-LP Vega 10
Chip size 123 mm2 mm2 mm2
Foundry 5 nm TSMC 14 nm GlobalFoundries 10 nm Intel 7 nm TSMC
Multiproc. of data streams 1024 1024 768 512
Frec. base 1270 MHz 1175 MHz 300 MHz 1750 MHz
Rub. turbo MHz 1275 MHz 1350 MHz MHz
You rendering 32 16 24 16
You texture 64 64 48 32
Texture rate 81.28 GTexel/s 81.60 GTexel/s 64.80 GTexel/s 56.00 GTexel/s
Pixel rate 40.64 GPixel/s 20.40 GPixel/s 32.40 GPixel/s 28.00 GPixel/s
Rub. memory 4.26 GHz 7 GHz 4.27 GHz 3.2 GHz
Ifaz. memory 128 bits 128 bits 128 bits 128 bits
Memory bandwidth 68.16 GB/s 112.00 GB/s 68.32 GB/s 51.20 GB/s
Consumption 80 W W
PCIe slots 2
Con. PCIe 1x 6 pines
Computing power 2.60 TFLOPS 2.61 TFLOPS 2.07 TFLOPS 1.79 TFLOPS



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