Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB
Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

Locked Out of my Own Desktop: Confusing, but an Easy Fix Found

Locked desktop!

Somehow, macOS Monterey, the successor to macOS Big Turd, has locked me out of my own desktop. Just out of the blue, things stop working—my desktop is locked and read-only.

I can no longer create or save files or change files on my desktop. It doesn’t matter which application or tool I use (application, command line,Finder, etc)—my Desktop is read-only and unusable.

Logout does nothing, reboot does nothing.

Locked out of desktop!

I thought there might be a damaged or defective com.apple.macl extended attribute on my desktop folder, created by some mysterious Apple bug.

Even the Finder just beeps if I try to duplicate something on my desktop or copy anything there. No alert, or message... confusing!

Command line commands fail, apps fail, etc.

diglloydMP:Desktop lloyd$ cat > test.text
-bash: test.text: Operation not permitted

diglloydMP:~ lloyd$ xattr Desktop
com.apple.macl
diglloydMP:~ lloyd$ xattr -pv com.apple.macl Desktop
Desktop:

UPDATE: somehow, something locked the desktop folder.

The solution is to unlock it by unchecking the Locked checkbox. But how did that box seemingly check itself? And why does the Finder not say/do anything with a locked desktop, even when logging in?

I didn’t even realize that folders could be locked (though only the immediate contents are locked when a folder is locked, not the contents of subfolders).

Locked out of desktop!

 

Upgrade Your Mac Memory
At much lower cost than Apple, with more options.
Lloyd recommends 64GB for iMac or Mac Pro for photography/videography.

Scalability of Focus Stacking: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs Apple 2019 Mac Pro 28-Core XEON W

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

This is an insightful study of just how CPU cores scale on a real-world computing task.

As well as just how and why the 2019 Mac Pro outperforms the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra on this task.

2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra: CPU Core Scalability (Focus Stacking, Zerene Stacker)

Includes an actual vs theoretical graph accounting for the downclocking of the CPU cores.

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

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Scalabilitiy of CPU cores for focus stacking in Zerene Stacker: time vs number of CPU cores
Intel XEON W 28-core in 2019 Mac Pro vs M1 Ultra 2-core
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Reader Comments on Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

See the in-depth review of the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra.

Apple Mac Studio, front and rear

Gene F writes:

The more test reviews I see the more I think software hasn’t caught up to the M1 Ultra yet. For instance, almost no existing routines exploit the difference between the 48 and 64 cores. And there’s already hints of an M2 chip. 

MPG: correct that some “catch up” time is needed. We can expect future improvements, both on CPU and GPU support. Just 6 months ago Adobe stated this about Photoshop:

Everything written in OpenCL is being rewritten for Metal on macOS this year. OpenCL and OpenGL are dead. I believe SmartSharpen is at the top of the list to move to Metal off of OpenCL.

However, it is also true that most software has not caught up with the 2019 Mac Pro, or the iMac Pro (now discontinued). Because it’s hard to do well, and that means time which means money.

And it is also true that many computing tasks are constrained to serial (in-order) execution in full (eg hashing) or at one or more choke points in the process (eg focus stacking). Non-parallizable tasks inherently limits the number of CPU cores that can be used productively ("scalability").

Which leaves us with tasks that can benefit from multiple CPU or GPU cores. But it’s a lot more complicated to program software for that than to just run it as one “thread”.

And so the M1 Max and M1 Ultra will take years to catch up, the same reasons that most of the 28 CPU cores on my 2019 Mac Pro so often go unused.

Still, unprecedented memory bandwidth of the M1 Ultra chip should reset expectations for the scalability of certain tasks. With 2.6X the memory bandwidth of my 28-core 2019 Mac Pro, the 20-core M1 Ultra has 3.7X the memory bandwidth per active core (4.5X faster per performance core). Developers that saw diminishing returns because of memory bandwidth need to rethink their assumptions.

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

Thunderbolt 4 Dock

Thunderbolt 4 hub and ports!

Any Mac with Thunderbolt 3.


Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Fan Noise

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

See the in-depth review of the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra.

Apple Mac Studio, front and rear

Don H writes:

When you were conducting various tests on the Studio in yesterday’s heat, did you ever hear the fans ramp up? (I haven’t on my Max, but I wasn’t really stressing it.)

With all the questionable design decisions of Apple’s over-stylized hardware, it seems that they do a decent job addressing the thermal/noise balance. (Perhaps they learned a humbling lesson with the 2013 Mac Pro that was supposed to have a great, innovative cooling design but ended up throttling future CPU plans.)

Considering over half of the volume of a Mac Studio is taken up by cooling components (and most of its weight), I’d hope the payoff would be a near-silent machine under load.

MPG: Even at full computing load at 90°F in my office, the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra is not audible at 3-4 feet away, unless the office noise level is 28 dB or less (so quiet that many people have likely never experienced it).

The 2019 Mac Pro (a very quiet machine for a desktop) was quite noticeable under those conditions and even ramped up its fans. And my iMac 5K was a nuisance by comparison (when under load).

Apple has done a world-class and unprecedented job at keeping the fan noise level down ubelievably low. We’ve never before had this much computing power in so compact a package, and so quiet that in absolute terms it is surely unrivalled.

I always have to snort in derision when someone compares an “equivalent” but “cheaper” PC to a Mac. The PC is usually loud as sin.

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories


Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

REVIEWED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra — Now with Updated Results for Photoshop CC 23.4.1 — Big Speed Improvements

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

The release of Photoshop CC 2022 v23.4.1 vaporized most of the performance problemswith Photoshop CC 2022 v23.3.2, literally overnight.

The Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra now looks to be the fastest Photoshop Mac ever made, particularly for raw file conversion. My 2019 Mac Pro never looks so dated.

Adobe has improved raw file conversion speed considerably since early 2022.

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

Convert 100 Sony A7R IV 60-megapixel raw flies to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro
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Adobe Releases Photoshop CC 23.4.1 — FIXES Serious Performance Bugs on Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

With today’s release of Photoshop CC 2022 v23.4.1, the performance problems have vaporized, and the M1 Ultra is at least not meaningfully slower than the M1 Max. And a little faster in some cases, meaning about 25% faster than v23.3.2

UPDATE: I’m seeing signs that thermal throttling may be at play in the M1 Ultra, eg a test that over iterations gets slower and slower. I might have to wait until morning to test (it is 90°F in my office). Also, not all tests are faster, but as yet I am unsure if this is temperature related.
diglloydHuge, 20 iterations: average = 20.96 {17.24, 16.53, 16.47, 16.39, 16.28, 16.27, 22.86, 22.84, 22.85, 22.83, 22.84, 22.84, 22.84, 22.85, 22.88, 23.03, 22.85, 22.86, 22.85, 22.87}
UPDATE: does NOT look like thermal throttling. I suspect a memory leak problem now; after running one benchmark (panorama), Photoshop was at 100GB memory usage after 20 iterations, which is absurd. OTOH, the Mac Pro hit 230GB after only 14 iterations. Not sure what Adobe has wrought with this release, but that is beyond absurd.

llcUltra:diglloydUtil lloyd$ pmset -g thermlog
Note: No thermal warning level has been recorded
Note: No performance warning level has been recorded
Note: No CPU power status has been recorded

It does make one wonder if Adobe QC is asleep at the switch, not able to detect something as basic as a 20-core being 25% slower than a 10-core machine. Before shipping the dreck to customers. Dang. But at least things look a lot better now.

Call it good timing or bad?

Terrible timing because I have hours of work ahead to re-test and republish everything related to Photoshop, and on two machines.

GREAT timing because it means I can redo the tests to show what the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra can do. Had I sent the Mac Studio back, I’d be left with test results that would have been out of date overnight.

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

OWC ROVER PRO wheels for Mac Pro

No tools or hassle… just place your Mac Pro’s factory feet into the Rover Pro’s polished stainless-steel housings and secure with a few hand twists.

When you’re done moving your Mac Pro around, the Rover Pro makes it just as quick and easy to convert back to the factory feet for stationary use.

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Java Web Server Startup

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The 2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra toasts the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro and 2019 iMac 5K.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Web Server Startup

Java web server startup time
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro,

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Build Java App with Apache Maven

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The 2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra smokes the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro and 2019 iMac 5K.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Maven Build

Build Java App with Apache Maven
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro,
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TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Adobe Camera Raw Enhance Details

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The Mac Studio M1 Ultra ekes out an about 16% win over the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, and both M1’s easily beat out the Intel-based Macs.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Adobe Camera Raw Enhance Details

Adobe Camera Raw Enhance Details
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro

Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: SHA512 Hashing Speed Scalability

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

Intel Macs do great. M1 Macs, not so hot, running slower than a 2015 MacBook Pro for 1/2/3/4/5 CPU cores.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: SHA512 Hashing Speed Scalability

SHA-512 hashing speed vs CPU cores
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2020 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro 28-core, 2015 MacBook Pro:

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: diglloyd Photoshop Benchmarks

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

Inexplicably slow results from the Mac Studio M1 Ultra, coming in 26% slower than the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max as tested in early 2022. It seems that Adobe has gone backwards on Photoshop performance, at least in ordinary operations.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Photoshop Benchmarks

diglloydSpeed1 Photoshop benchmark
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2020 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro

Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Create Multi-Res Image Series

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The Mac Studio M1 Ultra disappoints big-time here, barely outpacing the M1 Max, and badly trailing the 2019 Mac Pro. For my work, this is my most important task, so this is a major disappointment.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Real World Photoshop: Make Multi-Res Image Series

Create multiple resolution aperture series (126 output images of varying sizes)
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro,

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Adobe Lightroom Import/Export

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The Mac Studio M1 Ultra leaves the other computers in the dust for Export JPEG, with the 2019 Mac Pro 28-core taking 74% longer! OTOH, the 2019 Mac Pro 28-core is all but a match on Import showing just how task-dependent it can be.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Adobe Lightroom Import/Export

Lightroom Import/Export: import 600 raw files, convert to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro:
Upgrade Your Mac Memory
At much lower cost than Apple, with more options.
Lloyd recommends 64GB for iMac or Mac Pro for photography/videography.

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW File Conversion, Hasselblad X1D

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The Mac Studio M1 Ultra shines, chewing through 50-megapixel Hasselblad X1D raw files in about 1.1 seconds each. Handily beating-out the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro, which takes 23% longer.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW file Conversion: Hasselblad X1D

Convert 100 Hasselblad X1D 50-megapixel raw flies to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro 28-core

Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW File Conversion, Nikon D850

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

The Mac Studio M1 Ultra processes 45-megapixel Nikon D850 raw files in just under one second each, at ~5% faster than the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW file Conversion: Nikon D850

Convert 100 Nikon D850 45-megapixel raw flies to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro 28-core

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW File Conversion, Sony A7R IV

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

Camera RAW file conversion is an area where the Mac Studio M1 Ultra shines, beating out all other Macs, chewing through monster 60-megapixel Sony A7R IV raw files in about 4/10 second each. Handily beating-out the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro, which takes a whopping 46% longer.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW file Conversion: Sony A7R IV

Convert 100 Sony A7R IV 60-megapixel raw flies to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW File Conversion, Fujifilm GFX100S, Fujifilm GFX50S

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

Chewing through monster 100-megapixel Fujifilm GFX100 raw files in about 8/10 second each. Handily beating-out the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro, which takes 27% longer.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW file Conversion: Fujifilm GFX

Convert 100 Fujifilm GFX files to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro 28-core

Adobe Lightroom Memory Usage: Excessive?

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

After running some Import/Export tests with Adobe Lightroom Classic 11.3.1, I was startled to see its memory usage peak at 74GB, and even when it was done processing, it was still scarfing up a whopping 69GB memory. All to Import 600 raw files, then Export them to JPEG.

What does it do when you have a catalog with 50K images instead of 0.6K images?

By comparison, Adobe Lightroom Classic 10.4 on macOS Mojave on a 2019 iMac 5K used only about 5GB memory for the same test on the same file set.

It makes one wonder whether 64GB memory is enough for memory-hungry Lightroom.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra/Max and other M1 Mac buyers should probably be thinking in terms of 128GB memory if at all feasible, with 64GB a bare minimum. A sorry state of affairs, memory is not upgradeable on any of the M1 Macs as of mid-2022.

Adobe Lightroom Classic 13.3.1 memory usage after importing/exporting 600 raw files
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TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW File Conversion, PhaseOne IQ4

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

See the test notes for details on hardware configuration and software versions.

Camera RAW file conversion is an area where the Mac Studio M1 Ultra shines, beating out all other Macs, chewing through monster 150-megapixel PhaseOne IQ4 150 raw files in about 8/10 second each. Handily beating-out the 28-core 2019 Mac Pro, which takes 40% longer!

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: RAW file Conversion: PhaseOne IQ4

Convert 100 PhaseOne IQ4 150-megapixel raw flies to JPEG
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro 28-core

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Adobe Photoshop CC 2022: Filters — 2X CPU and GPU Cores and Memory = SLOWER

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

2X the CPU cores and 2X the GPU cores and twice the memory and the same clock speed are slower? Dumbfounded, but repeated tests keep showing the same dismal results for the M1 Ultra.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Photoshop Filters

Photoshop CC filters
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max, 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro

 

 


Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Focus Stacking with Zerene Stacker

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

I don’t think I’ve ever before been this baffled by how 2X the CPU cores can be 23% to 76% slower.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Focus Stacking with Zerene Stacker

CPU utilization discussion follows.

Zerene Stacker, focus stacking speed

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: IntegrityChecker, Verify (SHA512 Hashing, Multithreaded)

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

The inferior hashing speed performance of the Apple M1 Ultra and M1 Max shows up when I/O speed is high. Otherwise, the superior SSD speed gates the performance.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: IntegrityChecker Verify

IntegrityChecker Java hashing speed: 2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2019 iMac 5K, 2019 Mac Pro

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Memory Bandwidth

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

Similar to the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max except with double the memory bandwidth, the Apple Studio M1 Ultra is like an NBA basketball player next to a toddler.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: Memory Bandwidth

Real world memory bandwith through the file system using diglloydTools MemoryTester.

Memory Bandwidth: 2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra vs 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max and others

TESTED: Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: SSD Speed

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

TESTED

Similar to the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max in behavior, the Apple Studio M1 Ultra has a very fast, but rather erratic SSD performance. See the two tests and the discussion.

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra: SSD Speed

Real world speeds through the file system using diglloydTools DiskTester.

Sustained transfer speed writing 1000 files of 5.65 GiB each to 6TB ~= 25.65TiB APFS volume

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra SLOWER than M1 Max?

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

See previous comments on the Apple Mac Studio.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

Just started testing a maxed-out Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra.

UPDATE: the speed problems were (mostly) fixed by Photoshop CC 2022 v23.4.1.

Flabbergasted and no idea yet what‘s going on. But if even one or two more tests go this way, it looks bad for the M1 Ultra. And maybe I’ll reboot and everything will change and there is some weird macOS bug? I’ll do what I can to get to the bottom of it.

  • Zerene Stacker: M1 Ultra tests 25% to 89% slower than the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max.
  • diglloydSpeed1 Photoshop test: M1 Ultra tests 26% slower than M1 Max .
  • diglloydMedium Photoshop test: M1 Ultra tests 26% slower than M1 Max .
  • OpenSSL SHA512: M1 Ultra is 9% slower than M1 Max.

This is ridiculous and if it holds for the other tests, count me out on the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra Fake. I’d suggest this: do not assume that the Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra performs as one would hope.

Is there a downclocked CPU in the M1 Ultra— substantially slower ones which guarantees inferior performance for many if not most tasks?

Apple System Report... Studiously avoids any mention of clock rate. Maybe that’s no accident. Nor do the online specifications or buying page discussion mention clock speed. That’s suspiciously vague.

Yeah, macOS has changed a little, and so has Photoshop, but ZereneStacker is running a native M1 Java virtual machine, and openssl has not changed.

David L writes:

The terminal tool “powermetrics” shows a lot of information and is refreshed continuously. I would recommend grep:ing on CPU or something to get a little less information.

DIGLLOYD: hadn’t heard of this tool, but it offers a fire hose of interesting stuff.


Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra Up And Running

Consult with Lloyd on your computer or photographic purchase, backup strategy, archival and storage strategy, etc.

See previous comments on the Apple Mac Studio.

A big thank-you to B&H Photo for sending the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD for review. This is exactly the configuration I would buy excepting a preference for a 4TB SSD (only to keep the cost down).

The Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra maxed-out system is here, connected to the Apple Studio Display. A svelte combo and I like the compact form factor. But $10K out of your bank account ought to feel nice (more than that with tax!). Glad it’s a loaner and not a line item on my CC.

No problems getting the display to sync, but of course one display usually works fine.

The initial setup was a demonstration of Apple’s “ship this dog, the calendar doesn’t lie!” quality assurance oxymoron. Numerous problems with Apple Migration Assistant made it a 3-hour ordeal until I could actually use the thing. Pretty design does not make up for broken functionality.

The Apple Mac Studio M1 is quiet but audible. In a quiet room it won’t annoy, but its presence will be heard at all times. Except perhaps by most people. I just notice things. Still, the crickets outside here at dusk are louder.

Each animal generally has enough brains to tan its own hide.

And so the M1 Ultra 20-core has (barely) enough CPU grunt to do SHA512 hashing to keep up with the SSD. Still 5.1 GB/sec ain’t bad, though it falls a bit short of the 13.6GB/sec of my 28-core 2019 Mac Pro.Hashing performance is just sucky on M1 chips, with Intel chips having special support. You’d think those fancy GPU cores could be brought to bear.

Note well that there is NO WAY to add fast storage to the Mac Studio. Get the biggest interal SSD you can as it’s 2X to 3X faster than anything you can connect with Thunderbolt. Still, the OWC Envoy Pro FX is no slouch, maxing out the Thunderbolt bus at about 2.8GB/sec.

IntegrityChecker Java automatically installed the "M1-support aarch" Java virtual machine, and runs flawlessly at about 4.7GB/sec on the internal SSD. It of course maxes out a gigabit ethernet connection, should you want to verify files over a network. But while 112MB/sec is superb for gigabit (near the limit of what is possible), 10-gigabit is mandatory for large data.

The 128GB of memory is far too little for my taste. It already constrains some development tests that are a breeze on my 2019 Mac Pro with 384GB memory, and I’ve been doing that for long hours lately. But Apple has presumably nailed 98%-or-so market coverage with the 128GB option. It would be a far more attractive machine (to me) with 192GB or 256GB memory.

Mark James of SoftRAID writes:

FYI: the M1 scales across thunderbolt ports. 2 of the Envoys, will give you 5GB/s.

For example, you can get 10GB read/writes with 4 thunderbolt drives if each can do 2800MB/s. the enclosed image is from 4 Thunderblades. (using AJA System test (full, not lite) 16.0.2).

I did not have fast standalone drives, but in theory 6 of the Envoy Pro FX would scale on the Ultra. Imagine 15GB/s on the Ultra.

M1 has a Thunderbolt chip for each Port/bus. The front on the Ultra (only) are full TB, also.

MPG: I wasn’t aware that each port has its own Thunderbolt 3 bus. That’s a terrific improvement!

I don’t see it as production-practical to RAID-0 stripe separate devices on the ports this way (reliability would concern me greatly), but point noted as a possibility so long as those ports are not needed for other things. Presumably someone needing bandwidth that high would also need the ports for more stuff. Good for YouTube videos, but I don’t see it as a reliable and practical solution... but I would accept a 2-drive RAID-0 stripe as something viable, taking into account reliability and port usage.

TB3 cables have never been fully reliable for me, with to many random disconnects. I am loathe to use RAID-0 striping across busses/ports.

But as Mike J writes:

I have a 32 TB OWC Mercury Pro U.2 Dual attached to a port on my Studio Ultra. At first I configured it with RAID-0 and it was fast. But after getting kernel panics when trying to back up with Carbon Copy Cloner, I read the issues tab on the SoftRAID site. Unfortunately, kernel panics with Softraid and m1 macs are not unknown. I reconfigured the drive as raid 5, which slowed it down (nuts!) but it now works reliably.

MPG: I was aware of this issue, but not that it was still extant. Apple seems intent on degrading and ultimately eliminating 3rd-party software that performs key functions. But maybe it will all work out somehow.

I also ran into the nuisance issue: “SoftRAID 6.2.1 driver no longer allows SMB sharing” .

CLICK TO VIEW: Apple Mac Studio at B&H Photo

CLICK TO VIEW: Thunderbolt and Related Accessories

Don H writes:

When I switched over to my Mac Studio I used Migration Assistant for the first time, ever. All previous times I copied everything over manually and set up my preferences by hand. Part of the reason is I never really trusted the black-box nature of MA, and part was to start with a completely clean slate, no leftover app cruft or junk files from now-obsolete software on my new machine. It’s a lot of work but something I generally only did every five or six years or so, and also took the opportunity to reevaluate my preference settings on the newer version of MacOS.

My primary concern with MA was moving over my mail archive, some of which dates back to the late 80s. I have about forty or so sorting rules, and a hundred different folders for organizing all my old messages. In the past I could manually copy over my Mail folder from the Library folder, import it all into the new version of MacOS I was ‘upgrading’ to, and the folder structure would get rebuilt and populated. But that doesn’t carry over the sorting rules and user preferences that have become more opaque with each new version of Mail. So I figured I’d give MA a try with the new Mac Studio, and if it didn’t work then I could wipe the disk clean and try another approach. Much to my shock, Migration Assistant in Monterey actually got it all right, so with that done I then copied over all my other files.

Other than the complex and opaque Library folder, I manually copy over all my other folders without using MA. To do that I move all the contents to equivalently-named folders inside the /User/Shared directory (which preserves all my user permissions) and double-check everything with Integrity Checker before copying over to the new machine, where everything gets checked again.

The reason I move all that out of my home folder (other than the Library folder which stays intact) and into Shared is so that Migration Assistant doesn’t try to copy it all over itself, making the entire copy operation an all-or-nothing multi-hour success or failure. By taking my huge collection of user files out of the picture, Migration Assistant *only* acts on my mail archive and user preferences. That narrows down the scope of what it does and shortens the time spent using MA before I can see success or failure.

Then, once MA is finished, I use Carbon Copy Cloner’s ‘Re-verify’ feature to accomplish the copying task, which performs its own integrity checking as part of an overnight operation. And then I check once again with Integrity Checker. Belt and suspenders…

MPG: I am not a big fan of Migration Assistant, but it allows for relatively fast setup, and I have a lot of special stuff that could take me a few hours to deal with manually. For a machine I am testing and then returning within weeks, I elect faster/easier. For one I buy/keep, I would do it manually in order to leave behind artifacts and cruft from old stuff.

Apple Mac Studio: top-end configuration

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