With every new release, it's assumed that Apple's tech is getting better, and by better we mean faster. But new reports have suggested that the new versions of the MacBook Pro – the 14-inch and 16-inch models, as well as the 2023 Mac mini, may not exactly be pushing the envelope.
We previously reported on the M2 MacBook Pro 13-inch base models being slower than their predecessors, as a result of having one SSD chip rather than two. And it seems that nothing has changed with the new models. 9 to 5 Mac has reported that once again, the base model of the new 14-inch MacBook Pro appears to feature fewer NAND chips than the last generation, which means that SSD read and write performance is actually worse than the previous generation.
@ZoneofTech also came to similar conclusions – see below.
BREAKING: We’ve just discovered that the base 14” M2 Pro MacBook Pro (512GB) is considerably slower than the previous 14” M1 Pro model. Apple is likely using single SSD modules again (like the base 256GB M2 Air and M2 MacBook Pro). More testing to come. pic.twitter.com/3kMiHVDxaFJanuary 24, 2023
So, will this difference in chip actually make a difference to real-world usage? Zone of Tech ran some tests (see video below) and found that performance was affected when using Lightroom, with a hefty image import taking 8 seconds in the M1 Pro, and 18 seconds with the M2 Pro. But, this was the only area where the M2 Pro MacBook was slower. In all the other tests, including those on Blender and Final Cut Pro, it out-performed its predecessor.
And according to Tech Radar, the 1TB and other configurations don't have the same problem. So if you're worried about performance, you may have to shell out for the more expensive configurations. Though we'd expect creatives who are used to dealing with a lot of files will want to have the most storage they can afford anyway.
The Mac mini M2 also apparently has the one NAND module rather than the two in the previous generation. But to be honest, we've just tested it, and we had no complaints whatsoever about its speed. See our Mac mini (M2) review for more details.