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macOS Sonoma system requirements: Is my Mac compatible with macOS 14?

2023 June 8
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Check the official macOS Sonoma system requirements to see if your Mac is supported because Apple has trimmed the device compatibility list for macOS 14.

Announced at the WWDC23 in June and launching publicly this fall, macOS Sonoma brings new capabilities like interactive widgets on the desktop, FaceTime improvements, enhanced gaming support, new features in Safari, and so on.

Apple has trimmed the device compatibility list for macOS Sonoma. Whereas the previous macOS Ventura update supported older Mac computers released as far back as 2015, macOS Sonoma requires a 2018 Mac or newer.

macOS Sonoma system requirements

The only exception is the Mac Pro, released in 2017 and discontinued in 2021, which will run macOS 114 just fine. But if you don’t own an iMac Pro or your Mac is a 2017 model or older, you’ll need to upgrade to a newer model to run Sonoma.

macOS Sonoma system requirements:

  • iMac Pro (2017 and later0)
  • iMac (2019 and later)
  • Mac Pro (2019 and later)
  • Mac Studio (2022 and later)
  • MacBook Air (2018 and later)
  • Mac mini (2018 and later)
  • MacBook Pro (2018 and later)

Apple silicon-exclusive features

Marketing image showcasing gaming on a MacBook Pro using AirPods and a PS5 controller

System requirements for major macOS updates have increased in the past few years, especially after Apple began transitioning Macs to home-grown silicon in 2021. The transition is now over, and Apple no longer builds new Intel Macs.

However, many macOS features continue to rely on advanced machine learning. That’s why Apple is increasingly leaning on the Neural Engine in its custom chips. For example, Siri now works when you just say “Siri,” but you need a Neural Engine in Apple silicon for that, which Intel Macs lack.

The Neural Engine is a dedicated coprocessor that runs machine learning tasks in a battery-friendly manner without burdening the CPU or the GPU.

Helping older Macs run macOS Sonoma with OpenCore

If your Mac is incompatible with macOS Sonoma, the OpenCore team is updating its excellent utility, called OpenCore Legacy Patcher. Its head Mykola Grymalyuk said on Twitter that an updated OpenCore boot loader will arrive within six months.

They’ve already patched a 2013 Mac Pro to run macOS Sonoma. Eventually, the tool will make various Macs released in 2017 compatible with Sonoma, but as said earlier, some features will only work if your Mac has Apple silicon.

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