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Rumor: Apple to Switch Back to Nvidia for 2012 GPUs

Just a few years after it switched from Nvidia to AMD, Apple is once again rumored to be switching things up when it comes to graphics for its Mac line of computers. Semi Accurate cites sources that say Nvidia has won the next round of Macs, likely starting with the Ivy Bridge models set to arrive next Spring.

"About three years after the decision to boot Nvidia out of the company was made, and two years after the first ATI/AMD Macs in recent memory hit the shelves, you will see Nvidia Macs reappearing," Charlie Demerjian writes.

According to Demerjin, part of the reason for the switch was an earlier decision not to use AMD microprocessors in the Macbook Air. The story goes that Apple and AMD were working on an AMD Llano-based MacBook Air last spring but the machine was cancelled despite being 'really, really close to production' because of supply issues. The switch to Nvidia from AMD is seen as one of the 'repercussions' from that deal falling through.

The last Macs to pack Nvidia GPUs were the early-2010 MacBook Pros. However, as Semi Accurate points out, the market for GPUs at Apple is shrinking as integrated solutions from companies like Intel flourish and notebooks become smaller and thinner. Apple may still be using AMD for discrete graphics for its larger notebooks but it has switched its smaller laptops to Intel-only solutions.

  • Marco925
    And watch the prices go Up Up Up!
    Reply
  • back_by_demand
    nVidia's cheque must have cleared
    Reply
  • alhanelem
    why bother?
    Macs cant run games
    Reply
  • de5_Roy
    this is one of the biggest in-your-face-amd-fanboys proof of glofo's production issues with their 32 nm node.
    llano's versatility as a decent cpu and a strong gpu interested apple. if glofo provided apple with enough llanos, amd could have made a !@#$ load of money there. amd could have taken up an even larger share of gpu market from leader intel and 3rd place nvidia. not to mention llano could have resulted in a (hopefully) cheaper macbook air.
    intel's success in being chosen by apple is only a rebound choice. :P
    amd's trouble will only grow because next year intel will have ivb. amd's trinity is nowhere in sight. i think i saw wikipedia's entry about trinity's release date changed from q1 2012 to h1 2012.
    unless...you want to see dr laptops with fx. (i keep thinking about that for some reason :P)
    Reply
  • I stopped reading the crap from semiaccurate a long time ago. I try to avoid extremely biased sources.
    Reply
  • fazers_on_stun
    9328841 said:
    this is one of the biggest in-your-face-amd-fanboys proof of glofo's production issues with their 32 nm node.
    llano's versatility as a decent cpu and a strong gpu interested apple. if glofo provided apple with enough llanos, amd could have made a !@#$ load of money there. amd could have taken up an even larger share of gpu market from leader intel and 3rd place nvidia. not to mention llano could have resulted in a (hopefully) cheaper macbook air.
    intel's success in being chosen by apple is only a rebound choice. :P
    amd's trouble will only grow because next year intel will have ivb. amd's trinity is nowhere in sight. i think i saw wikipedia's entry about trinity's release date changed from q1 2012 to h1 2012.
    unless...you want to see dr laptops with fx. (i keep thinking about that for some reason :P)

    Yeah - the article is old news by now and has been discussed in several threads, but I agree - esp. the fact that AMD couldn't promise enough of the high-end Llano's due to yield problems with GF, has cost them a potentially pretty lucrative deal with Apple. According to some other rumors, AMD is pulling their 28nm production (Brazos updates anyway) from GF and going with TSMC. I dunno if the Southern Islands (AMD 7xxx GPUs) are affected or not, but if I were Rory Read, I'd pull those from GF as well, seeing as how some reports show TSMC's 28nm process to be around 45% higher performance than their 40nm process.

    I think AMD already knew this some time ago, and is one of the reasons for the recent 10% workforce layoffs. If they stay with GF as their fab, they're probably going to get in even more difficulty. So, time to pull the plug..
    Reply
  • EightyFour
    this means is that you're now overpaying for slightly different hardware?
    Reply
  • sonofliberty08
    yawn... buzz me if there are fusion or tegra mac
    Reply
  • ojas
    sad times for AMD...and it's tough for them, poor chaps. Nvidia's twice as big in terms of capital and Intel's 30 times bigger.

    I think the only thing stopping Intel/Nvidia from buying AMD/ATI is an anti-trust lawsuit.

    Actually, Intel could buy both AMD and Nvidia...and maybe even ARM...VIA is a bit big, but certainly within their budget. lol.

    Though going by this logic, Apple could probably buy IBM or MS.

    All sad thoughts...
    Reply
  • jimmy-bee
    alhanelemwhy bother?Macs cant run gamesTotal BS and you know it. Apple never really has sold itself as a gaming platform in the first place.
    I have a STEAM account out of necessity for part of my gaming on my gaming computer. One thing I noticed with my Macbook Pro one day was that if I put OS X version of STEAM on my MacI it will allow me to download all my games to it and run them under OS X. Pretty cool, I don't do it but I can. I also use a Mini Mac with XP boot-camped to play old legacy games on up to Oblivion that refuses to work on my big 7 gaming rig.
    Reply