Apple’s new line of MacBooks ditched Intel in favor of Apple̵
For example, MacBook Air has no fan at all. On the plus side, if you remove the fan, the machine will run completely silent. However, its removal didn’t add more battery as some might have hoped. Instead, Apple has added a heat spreader to keep the machine cool.
At first glance, not having a fan might seem like a disadvantage, but you should remember that Apple’s iPhones and iPads have been doing a tremendous job for quite some time and there are no fans in them either. With the amount of performance you get from this machine, you may be able to throw away your old laptop.
On the other hand, you would think the MacBook Pro would have a completely different cooling system based on previous reviews. You would be wrong. iFixit found that the fan used in the M1 Pro, exactly same as in the latest generation Intel model. But thanks to the much better efficiency of Apple’s SoC, the fan doesn’t spin as often. And when it does, it is whisper quiet.
Both notebooks use the same M1 chip, but Apple uses a method called ‘binning’ to distinguish the lower machine. To put that in layman’s terms, all M1 chips have eight GPU cores, but some have an eighth core that is not fully functional or does not meet Apple’s standards. So instead of throwing them out, the company just shuts down the eighth core and ships it as a seven core model. Therefore, there is a version of the MacBook Air with a seven-core GPU, while all other models have eight.
Of course none of these notebooks have been upgradeable in the past and that doesn’t change suddenly because of M1. That means you have to be very careful about what you buy when you first order your computer. What you see is what you get. And this time you have no choice of processor and the RAM is integrated directly into the SoC. All you can choose is storage and memory, which are limited to 2 TB and 16 GB respectively.
As always, iFixit does a masterful job of taking apart the latest gadgets and giving us a sense of how difficult it is to fix and what has changed. Check out the full teardown to see comparisons between the new MacBook internals and Intel models.