Apple Silicon and Big Sur

Apple Silicon and Big Sur


This week Apple announced three new Mac models based on Apple's new M1 processor; a MacBook Air, a Mac mini and a MacBook Pro 13".

The new M1 processor is the first step in Apple's transition towards ARM-based Macs. Early benchmarks indicate that the M1 outperforms the 16-inch MacBook Pro in terms of CPU power and according to Apple the GPU is faster than the on-board GPU's of comparable Intel CPUs. As such the M1 is a powerful CPU, but it does not have the power of discrete GPUs. You can read more about the M1 CPU on Apple's website.

In order to prepare Capture for the transition of Macs to ARM we acquired a "developer transition kit" earlier this year. It is a prototype Mac based on the A12Z ARM CPU inside a Mac Mini, the same CPU that sits in the latest iPads.

We have tested the current public release of Capture on the transition kit with macOS Big Sur and it runs fine. That is, the Intel compiled version of Capture 2020 in an ARM Mac under Rosetta 2. Since most of the heavy lifting happens on the GPU, the impact of running under Rosetta is hardly noticable.

We have also built an ARM version of Capture 2021 and run that on the same transition kit without problems (as seen in the image). Here we have had to disable some features, as other libraries we rely on, such as NDI, have not yet been made available with macOS ARM support. Either way we intend to release Capture 2021 for macOS as a "universal binary" with native support for both Intel and ARM.