Though at one point Apple heavily pushed the concept of an external GPU (eGPU), it seems the tech giant has ditched that direction altogether when it comes to its new M1-powered MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro and Mac mini.
While the tech giant’s new M1 Macs tout impressive CPU performance, none of the new computers are compatible with external GPUs via their two Thunderbolt ports.
Though eGPU use with Apple’s MacBook line likely never truly took off with creative professionals in the photography and video space given how expensive they are, it’s disappointing that these new Macs aren’t compatible with the devices. Apple first started pushing the concept of pairing the MacBook Pro with an eGPU with the release of the 2018 version of the laptop.
It’s also worth pointing out Apple’s new 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1 only features two USB-C ports instead of four. While this is consistent with the Intel version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro it replaces, it’s still a disappointing move on Apple’s part. Further, the M1 13-inch MacBook Pro is limited to 16GB of RAM while its Intel counterpart can be configured with up to 32GB of RAM.
With the $1,299 M1 MacBook Air being the only exception given it includes a seven-core GPU, all of Apple’s new Macs feature an integrated seven-core GPU.
Apple still sells Blackmagic’s Radeon Pro 580 eGPU in the Apple Store for $899.