MacOS Big Sur Compatibility & Supported Macs List

Jul 2, 2020 - 10 Comments

macOS Big Sur Compatibility List

MacOS Big Sur is coming in the fall of 2020 with a big visual redesign and a variety of new features. You might be wondering if your Mac is able to run macOS Big Sur, or macOS 11 (or macOS 10.16 according to the beta installer), so with that in mind we’re going to share a list of Macs capable of running Big Sur.

Apple has a pretty good track record of providing software updates and support to their devices for years, but naturally not all Macs will officially support macOS 11 Big Sur. Whether you own a MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, MacBook, iMac, Mac mini, or Mac Pro, read on to figure out which Macs are able to run macOS Big Sur.

macOS Big Sur Compatibility List

We’ll be listing out all the MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, MacBook, iMac, Mac Pro, and Mac Mini models that are capable of running macOS Big Sur, as officially stated by Apple on their website. Basically if you purchased a Mac in the past few years (from late 2013 onward), then it’s pretty likely that your device is on the compatible Macs list, but let’s review the official list of supported hardware:

macOS Big Sur Compatible Macs

  • MacBook Pro (Late 2013 and newer)
  • MacBook Air (2013 and newer)
  • MacBook (2015 and newer)
  • iMac (2014 and newer)
  • iMac Pro (2017 and newer)
  • Mac Pro (2013 and newer)
  • Mac Mini (2014 and newer)

There you go, as you can see it’s basically any Mac released from 2013 and onward that officially supports macOS 11 Big Sur.

If you aren’t exactly sure when the Mac you own was released, you can find the make and model year of your Mac pretty easily in macOS.

Aside from raw hardware compatibility, there are some vague system requirements for macOS 11 too, and you’ll need to have adequate hard disk space available on the Mac to be able to install macOS Big Sur.

The list is fairly close to which Macs are able to run Catalina, but unlike the macOS Catalina compatibility list which was pretty much identical to the list of devices that were capable of running macOS Mojave, some older Mac models have been left out. Notably, the 2012 variants of the MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and iMac will not officially support macOS Big Sur. But don’t despair completely, because if you’re an advanced user and willing to take some risk, there will likely be a DosDude patch that allows MacOS Big Sur to run on older and officially unsupported hardware.

If you didn’t find your Mac in this list, your device will be limited to running macOS Catalina and will not be further supported by Apple when it comes to major software updates, though usually the prior two major releases continue to get security updates for several years.

On the other hand, if you did find your model in this compatibility list and you can’t wait to try out the upcoming update, you can enroll in the Apple Beta Software program to be eligible for the macOS Big Sur public beta when it comes out in a few weeks. Or, if you’re part of the Apple Developer program, you can download and install the macOS Big Sur developer beta right now.

Note that beta versions of macOS are under active development and are therefore far from a stable release, so we don’t recommend you to install this on your primary Mac. Beta versions often have stability issues and bugs that may prevent things from behaving as expected, or even worse. Always backup a Mac before running beta software you if go that route.

Of course you may also be curious about the other new operating systems coming and what they will support and run on, so check out a list of iOS 14 compatible iPhone models and iPadOS 14 compatible iPads too.

Is your Mac on the compatibility list of supported devices for macOS Big Sur? What do you think of the system requirements and supported hardware? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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Posted by: Hamlin Rozario in Mac OS X, News, Tips & Tricks

10 Comments

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  1. Dennis G says:

    Continuing to dumb down the user interface to the lowest format is so dissapointing!
    Task bar does not need boxes around the icons.

  2. Bob Englert says:

    I have decided that I am perfectly satisfied with High Sierra on my 2012 MacBook Pro 15.

  3. Daniel says:

    I used to LOVE a new OS edition…now even updating anything fills me with dread and regret. It seems like everything apple is perpetually a “beta”. For every new feature they add…two functions break.

  4. Donna D. says:

    Good point. I love my Mac and it has been running forever. That’s why I bought one. They are so much more expensive than they used to be. I won’t be upgrading anytime soon

  5. JohnIL says:

    Was glad to see my 2014 Mac Mini would see another Mac OS upgrade this Fall but honestly it does feel like after Catalina it started to show its age. Duel core 4th gen Haswell low voltage CPU doesn’t give me much confidence. But will have to wait and see how it performs over the next few months.

  6. TOTO says:

    MAC OS BIG SUR or MAC BIG BUG ?

  7. RobH says:

    Really wish they would guarantee updates for 10 years on hardware. I have a 2012 iMac that is absolutely fine for everything and yet it wont be supported for some unknown reason.

    • Lee says:

      I have to run the latest OS because of my job. But for anything at home they are staying on 10.14.6 Mojave. They say my 2011 mac mini cant run 10.14.6, but it does thanks to DosDude1. 10.15 is just rubbish, and from what I see from Mac OS BIG BUG it dont look any better, all rubbish geared towards mindless kids and “social networking”. Macs will soon become glorified iPads anyway, they are almost there now.

  8. Jeffrey Diehl says:

    iMac (21.5 inch, Late 2013). Running Mac OS Mojave 10.14.6.

    Catalina still has problems and I did not update to that.
    Big Sur will have problems through 2023 and then I’ll look for a new computer if this one has any unsolvable problems. Upgrading for the sake of upgrading is like the new apparel put forth every year by sports teams. Just another way to get $$ from the end user.

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