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Mac M3: What specs?


So after all this talk about how much faster the M3 Max Mac is, I'd like some advice on which model to get, and which items to add.


How many Cores can AC27 address? (M3 Max has options or 30 or 40. Can AC utilize them all?)

How much memory can AC use? What's the right balance? Is it better to have 30 cores w/ 96GB memory or 40 cores w/ 64GB? (Price of both machines are priced similarly.)


I usually get minimal storage, because it's easy enough to offload large items to the cloud.  Is there a reason to have more than 1 TB on the machine?




Operating system used: Mac Apple Silicon


It all depends on the size/complexity of the projects you are working on.

I am still running the M1 Max MBP with 32GB and everyhting runs smoothly.


PS: I usualy work on medium (up to 20k sqm) residential projects.

macOS Sonoma
John Gilchrist

How about the base model iMac M3?

8 core CPU, 8 core GPU, 256 GB storage, 8 GB unified storage, $1,299.00


My current machine is iMac 27, 2019, GHz 8 core Intel core i9, Radeon Pro Vega 48 8Gb, 64GB 2667 MHz DDR4. It has been good up to now but seems to be slowing down, 3d navigation can be jerky not smooth. I do moderately complex residential and multi family projects using Archicad 27.


Don't even consider touching the 8 gig model. I work on the same type of projects and each AC instance uses 5 to 8GB of RAM. Considering that the OS + the rest of the apps and the GPU share the same pool, you would bottleneck the system day one. Go for 16GB as a bare minimum. If you use to run 2-3 instances of AC at the same time, like i do, start considering 24 gigs or even more.


Storage doesn't matter much if you chose the M3, if you go with any of the M2 products stay away from the 256GB variant, it's slow af.


What would i do? I can't work without 2 monitors and i like to have my work with me handy at all times, so i would just remove the imac from the shortlist. I would chose between a 14" M2 Pro or a 13" M3 Air 16GB. They should be around the same price (M3 vanilla supports dual monitors now).

macOS Sonoma

Setup info provided by author