The latest Mac Studio machines feature Apple's M1 Ultra chip, which is essentially two M1 Max chips joined together. This makes it the most powerful Mac in the current range. However, it seems a new Mac Pro is still in development and will push the limits even further.
An M2 Ultra chip is likely to be released in 2023, alongside M2 Pro and Max models which are expected to replace the existing M1 versions at some stage in the new year – though the timescale is unknown.
According to Mark Gurman in his Bloomberg newsletter (opens in new tab) last weekend, the new Mac Pro will feature the M2 Ultra chip, which will offer a 24-core CPU and a 76-core GPU — assuming then that a new M2 Max will offer half that (12-core CPU and 38-core GPU).
All that culminates in a mind-blowingly fast machine that could cost twice as much as the current Mac Pro. That's all great news for power-hungry users, but another option it seems is unlikely to happen.
Originally there were rumours of an even faster chip that would combine four M2 Max chips to create an M2 Extreme. This could have offered a 48-core CPU and a 152-core GPU, which has got to be enough to power a small planet. It seems though, that this is no longer in the works.
Apart from being lost as to who would need that kind of power, I feel the rumoured M2 Ultra is more than enough for the Mac Pro. Though if that power is also made available in a new Mac Studio, the Pro needs to offer something extra. That could be the expandability we've seen on previous Mac Pro models or simply storage capacities. It does suggest that we could be looking at a much smaller machine that previous incarnations – I did love the trash can design though.
Personally, I'd love to see that M2 Max chip inside a 27-inch iMac – an iMac Pro maybe. As well as in updated MacBook Pro models.