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M1-equipped Macs go to Affinity Photo and beyond

Affinity Photo
(Image credit: Serif)

Serif's Affinity creative apps are ready to go on Apple’s new macOS Big Sur – and primed to deliver superfast performance on Macs with M1 chips.

Available now, the Affinity 1.8.6 update for macOS is ready to tap straight into the potential of Apple’s next generation of Macs, enabling users of Affinity Photo – as well as Affinity Designer and Publisher – to do more, faster.

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Ashley Hewson, Managing Director of Affinity developer Serif, says: “We’re proud that our Affinity apps are leading the way once again, this time in offering full native support for Apple’s new M1 chip.

“The architecture of the chip, particularly having such a high-performance GPU with unified memory with the CPU, is perfect for professional creative applications.

“The advantages are particularly noticeable when working on documents with thousands of pixel layers, vector objects and text. Edits to pixel layers are best handled on the GPU, while vector and text on the CPU. When you have unified memory it allows much faster handling of these complex documents.”

Serif was one of the developers to receive the DTK from Apple, to be able to develop for M1 before launch. It didn’t take long to get Affinity apps running natively on the new hardware.

(Image credit: Serif)

“Our fully-featured iPad apps already take advantage of very similar architecture on the A-series chips, so it actually only took us a day to port our Mac version to run natively on M1,” adds Hewson.

“In fact, ever since developing for iPad, we’d always hoped that chips with this architecture would eventually come to Mac, so we’re very excited that day is finally here.”

Mac customers with M1 can expect a more responsive user experience with respect to painting, pixel editing, filter effects, document rendering and more.

It also enables many more elements like adjustment layers and live filters to be maintained before performance suffers - allowing for a more non-destructive workflow, even on the most complex of documents.

“We have seen speed increases of over 3x faster running on the new MacBook Air. It just makes our apps run faster, smoother and feel more responsive than ever before.”

Existing users of Affinity apps on macOS can download Affinity 1.8.6 for free. Users adopting macOS Big Sur will notice some tweaks to the UI and app icons to match the new styling of macOS Big Sur.

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