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2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra: SHA512 Hashing Speed Scalability

Unsure which Mac to get or how to configure it? Consult with Lloyd, and see recommended Macs for photographers and videographers.

MPG tested the $7999 Apple Mac Studio M1 Ultra 20-core CPU / 64-core GPU/ 128GB / 8TB SSD , provided on loan for review by B&H Photo, an authorized Apple Mac dealer. Please buy your gear at B&H Photo and OWC/ using any link from this site.

2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra


This test assesses raw hashing power (SHA-512) for 1..N CPU cores, the hash that IntegrityChecker Java uses.

Intel-based Macs have dedicated instruction support for fast hashing, and the Java Virtual Machine gives those instructions lots of love with native code support.

But on Apple Silicon, things look a lot less rosy.

If below are out of date: view current Mac wishlist and all current OWC wishlists.

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

Intel Macs do great. Fastest of all up to 10 CPU cores, is the 2020 iMac 5K, with the 2019 iMac 5K close behind (up to its 8 cores), and the 2019 Mac Pro (red line), which keeps going strong all the way to its 28 CPU core potential.

For hashing performance, the M1 Ultra and M1 Max cannot compete with a wheezing 7-year-old 2015 MacBook Pro 4-core (orange line), requiring 6 CPU cores just to match this aging Intel machine at 4 cores. Though they do pass the old MBP by once 7 or more cores come into play.

The 2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra (thick green line) scales close to linearly up to 20 CPU cores, matching or beating the 2021 MacBook Pro M1 Max from 1..10 cores and then carrying on all the way to 20 CPU cores. This shows that the design scales well.

The M1 Ultra and M1 Max both “flatten” their performance slightly as the efficiency cores are the last to be used (9 and 10 cores for M1 Max, cores 17/18/19/20 for the M1 Ultra). But that downwards bend at 10 cores for the M1 Ultra might be a hint that the system doesn’t always schedule performance cores as it ought—multiple runs show the same behavior.

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:
2022 Mac Studio M1 Ultra
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