My initial experience with Apple M1 processor

My 1st Mac Mini

I am a Geek: I cannot deny it: I bought an Apple Watch Series 6 just after Keynote, I bought a Mac Mini M1 beginning of December. Today I am talkin about the Mac Mini

Let me say the impression so far is quite positive.I have ended up picking a 8 GB RAM — 512 GB internal disc size. I had been tempted to go for the 16 GB RAM configuration , remembering the sluggishness of my iMac experiences so far; however the larger delivery time and a conversation with Apple customer support pushed me to eventually pick the 8 GB version: Apple representative pointed out that due to different architecture of M1 processor, 8 GB are more than enough except from memory-intensive professional use.

My first month of usage proved that to be true. I bench-marked against my current Mac roster:

  • MacBookAir 128 GB SSD; a
  • MacBook Pro -2012 512 SSD/8 GB RAM (I replaced the original drive with a Samsung Evo and I expanded the RAM) 2.5 GHz Dual Core i5
  • iMac 2015 Intel 8GB 3.3 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7

Definitely it looks like a game-changer in term of speed and performance: the 8 GB RAM are definitely enough! Even with several application running I did not notice any significant slow down

Most SW did not present an issue. Even non-native applications that required Rosetta-2 showed a significant speed improvement.

Zoom actually prompted me to upgrade to dedicated M1 version.

Pdrive however is still giving me issues: normally through macFUSE I should be able to access the remote disk space on the cloud directly on Finder. However, although Pdrive already developed a dedicated version for Apple M1 processors, it seems that Big Sur 11.1 blocked the system extension using macFuse. In other words I am left using the Web interface to move files to PCloud.

I am now considering getting a 2nd iMac Mini for my son. This time however I am going for a different configuration: 16 GB Ram and 256 GB disc space. I am compensating the lesser internal disc capacity with an exteranl Samsung T/ SSD-USB-C driv: I hope this solution proves to be less costly. I opted for 16 GB instead of 8 GB mainly for availability issues.

Keep you informed about my progress!

Electronic Engineer with a passion for programming, Wireless communication, Internet of Things and others…