Thanks to some benchmarking and teardowns of the latest M2 Mac Mini models and new M2 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, we’ve learned that due to a particular hardware decision the previous generation of these Macs are actually faster in some aspects – let’s check it out!
Just like with the newest M2 MacBook Air, even though the M2 chip itself is faster and can provide faster read/write speeds on the SSD, Apple’s decision to limit the lesser storage options to fewer NAND chips has greatly hampered speeds.
9to5Mac cracked one of those puppies open and found the same situation inside the base models of the new M2 Pro MacBook Pro – fewer NAND chips at a higher capacity:
Like the base level M2 MacBook Air, the base level of the latest 14″ MacBook Pro seems to feature fewer NAND chips – at a higher capacity – than the last generation. This results in SSD read and write performance that’s dramatically lower than the previous generation.Derek Wise – 9to5Mac
This decision to include fewer, higher capacity NAND chips for the SSD on base model M2 Mac Mini and M2 Pro MacBook Pro models can account for up to 30% – 50% read/write speed loss over the last M1 generation models… that’s a lot.
Sure, higher capacity is nice and all but to limit the base models even more than they already are is an odd choice. Naturally, the M2 chips are faster overall and it would make sense for anyone who actually needs a new M2 Pro MacBook Pro to get the upgraded capacity storage models anyway, but the base model M2 Mac mini will be incredibly popular and could be a customer’s first entry into the Mac ecosystem.
Those first-time customers deserve to have an un-hampered experience. Most won’t notice, but anyone who wants to look up reviews or researches their purchase will learn about this limitation.
MacRumors noted in their article on the topic that they’ve reached out to an Apple spokesperson for additional information, but haven’t heard anything yet – so we have to assume Apple doesn’t consider this to be a huge issue.
Well, just like most things Apple – we can’t have newer, next generation products without there being at least one downside. Maybe next year!