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The G5: To MP, or not to MP

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
That is the question.

Current time: We have a DP 1GHZ G4, selling for $2999. Under the best circumstances, this thing could be equal to a 1.6-1.8ghz single processor mac

G5 time (2004? ): Rumor has it that the G5 will debut with 1.2, 1.4 and 1.6ghz chips. If so:

1. How would a 1.6ghz be vs 1.6ghz of G4 power?

2. Would it be worth the wait?

3. Can Apple dump DP so easily (after all that has gone into DP hype)

4. Does 1.6ghz sound better than DP 1ghz?

For me,
1 - G5 would be faster, marginally, as 64bit apps wouldn't be widespread (64bit Quartz might make it worth it!! )
2 - No
3 - No
4 - Yeah

Is this a likely senario? Hopefully not! If Apple would cram TWO G5's into the top model, a 1.6ghz G5 would be awfully more appealing. In retrospect, in one year, they would have moved from DP800 G4 to DP1600 G5 (note: presuming MWNY release). Respectable!


So, what are your predictions? Will Apple MP and own on the stage, or just take SP to the dance?
post #2 of 19
1. Good question. If you believe the rumor sits (you do believe the rumor sites don't you?)
the G5 will be a really, really fast hunk of Silicon which in addition to boosting the clock speed will get more done per clock, thus putting all matter of hurt on Intel et al. But that all assumes you believe the rumor sites on a piece of silicon that is still a mystery inside an enigma inside....

2. See #1

3.Well may be with all Silicon that will fail at first they can make a matching CPU keyring to go with new Macs, it would technically in a way be dual processor

4. Probably (No DP overhead and hopefully the G5 is at least marginally more efficient per clock

Hopefully the reports of mystery boxes coming from Cupertino that blow all the other Macs and PCs in the house away are indeed the fabled G5s that are coming soon to an Apple store near you. But the again Windows happens...
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post #3 of 19
I don't think Apple has given up on convincing people that there is more to computing power than clock speed. The G5 will help on the clock speed front but it will also go far beyond that. Apple is not above mixing and matching things in the pro line. You could easily see the low end of the three use a G4 while you get either a dual G4 or single G5 for the second model and a dual G5 for the high end. Nobody knows. Being a pro user I'm hoping for a G5 to come by July.

Don't under-estimate Apple's ability to keep all kinds of secrets from the world at large. It's been my observation that they have gotten better and better at it.
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post #4 of 19
Apple has an OS that can take full advantage of MP's so they need to push toward MP systems. This is especially important since they are working toward bieng major players in multi-media. Something to note, though an application might not fully utialize the MP ability of the computer, the OS does when multi-tasking. Since most people today run more than 1 Application at a time, anyone doing this will see some benefit. Another point is that as MP systems become more available, more programs will take advantage of this, just as more programs take advantage of Alti-Vec today than when the G4 came out.

Also, since the days of the G4 "wish-list" of specs multi-core processors have been proposed as possible additions to the Power PC line of processors. Selling people on MP systems will allow a great marketing campaign for Apple when it finally reaches silicon. This was also IBM's prefered direction instead of Alti-Vec if I remember correctly, so if Apple had chosen this direction we might not have seen the stand still Motorolla had with the G4, and , pure speculation, we would be anticipating the release of a quad core G5 possibly with the addition of a SIMD at speed of 1.6-2 ghz today instead of the G5 the rumour mills are proposing.
post #5 of 19
I don't see why they wouldn't do a MP config.

I'd be first in line to get one (assuming I had the money )
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post #6 of 19
The main reason we might not see a G5 MP config right away would be limited chip supply. Once production was in full swing and the yields were good I'd expect that we'd see G5 MP boxes -- after all with the faster and scalable bus design, the G5 could probably support 2x, 4x, or more.
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post #7 of 19
[quote]Originally posted by Programmer:
<strong>The main reason we might not see a G5 MP config right away would be limited chip supply....</strong><hr></blockquote>


Thank you....
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post #8 of 19
[quote]Originally posted by Programmer:
<strong>The main reason we might not see a G5 MP config right away would be limited chip supply. .</strong><hr></blockquote>

Excepted if apple wait to have a huge stock of G5 before releasing his next generation of powermac.
post #9 of 19
i doubt that the G5 will be multi core like the power 4 : too much transistors, and heat for a chip that can be used also for the embedded market.
It's more simple to make dual G5.

And just a personal guess, the more we will wait the G5 the more sophisticated he will be. personnaly i expect him for january, but with tremendeous power : a higher jump in performance than the G3 generation, and a new mobo with the lattest technology avalaible. Perhaps i say that because i fear that i cannot buy a new mac this year
post #10 of 19
Apple should not wait one second longer to release the G5, in ANY form, than they have to. Apple will be much better off to push the G5 out the door as a single processor than wait even a month to build enough supply to do dual processors.
post #11 of 19
[quote]Originally posted by The Swan:
<strong>Apple should not wait one second longer to release the G5, in ANY form, than they have to. Apple will be much better off to push the G5 out the door as a single processor than wait even a month to build enough supply to do dual processors.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Agreed, the bad marketing of having half the MOBO & Processor speeds of Intel is making it very difficult for them to be taken seriously in the top end. This is not a market share expanding situation people - at best, it's stop gap maintenance solution, and at worst - well, I don't wanna think about that.

In effect, Apple is becoming the Israel of the computer industry ... no room for retreat.
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post #12 of 19
If the rumored spec benchmarks are true, then a 1.6 GHz G5 will snack on dual 1 GHz Powermacs for brunch. The G5 is going to rock, and in dual form it will be downright scary.

OS X gives Apple every reason to make at least one dual G5 Powermac model. Signs point to Apple pursuing the high-end 3d/special effects workstation market--if so then a dual G5 is just the ticket. I don't think Apple is so dumb that they would ship both OS X and the G5, but forget to offer a dual G5 that OS X could exploit to the max.
post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 
My logic is as follows. Apple has a history of dumping MP in the dust, when it finds a way around the speed increase needed. Think back to the 400/450DP/500DP era. DP was beat on like hell, Apple poised it as the next britney spears. (I was working for apple at that time, did some animation work, who remembers that little movie with the speedo, something like G4, now Double Time? ).

Apple got their hands on the 733mhz G4, only 50% faster, and yet this warrented dumping MP. This chip was SLOWER than the DP500 (marginally) in DP optimised tasks.

Whats to say that won't happen again?

Why its more likely: We are not going up 45% or whatever, we are going up 60%

Why it is less likely: OSX is more MP aware, the speedup will be lessened. Also, Apple have since put even more PR hype into MP, can they shake more off just as quickly as before? Me don't think so.




Just a thought
post #14 of 19
It comes down to cost and yields. If the G5 is relatively plentiful at $200 a processor, we'll see MP configurations. If it's struggling off the line at $500 a pop, we won't.

The rumors say it'll be surprisingly inexpensive, but then the rumors make it sound like the eighth wonder of the world. Time will tell.

On the plus side, Mot seems to have licked its yield problems completely, or Apple wouldn't be offering GHz duals. And by all accounts the 7455 is a sweet little processor.
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post #15 of 19
Apple stoped, or curbed the DP systems in the past for good reasons. Thier first offerings, back in the 9600 days there were too few programs that supported them and the OS itself didnt take advantage of them. When Apple started them mid-high end MP systems with the 450 and 500 it was a stop-gap measure to compenate for Motorollas failure to increase the speed of the G4. Again, Apple didnt have the OS to fully utilize MP's.

The current situation is different. OS X is out, and fully supports MP systems. A number of high end software products support MP systems as well. MP systems are very benefitial to Apples Pro customers (2D and 3D design, animation, video, etc). With Apples purchase of Nothing Real, they have bought some very high end technology which will benefit from MP systems. It would be unwise, and counter to the direction that they have been moving for them to drop MP systems.

That said, the offerings when the G5's are released will be based on chip yield, as they have been since the 450 MP. If the rumours are based in fact, then the G5 will be a single core system when it is released. But, I believe that I have read that they can make them Multi-cored chips. Will Moto/IBM or whoever actually makes the G5 make them with more than 1 core, I dont know. We have a better chance seeing it if IBM is pushing the chip design becouse it would benefit thier servers. I know that I would like to see a G5 with 2 or 4 cores. Imagine editing video on a Dual 1.5 ghz G5 that has 4 cores (equal to 8 processors!) If Apple could bring this technology to the desktop, then they truely would be inovating.
post #16 of 19
[quote]Originally posted by JCG:
<strong> I know that I would like to see a G5 with 2 or 4 cores. Imagine editing video on a Dual 1.5 ghz G5 that has 4 cores (equal to 8 processors!) If Apple could bring this technology to the desktop, then they truely would be inovating.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I don't know how innovative this is. The multicore thing is interesting, but adding processors just for the sake of adding processors isn't that innovative. Look at Intel. They add GHz just for the sake of GHz.

Innovatation comes from using the processor intelligently. Clock for clock, my 500 MHz TiBook is four times faster than my roommate's 1.4 GHz P4 at RC5.
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post #17 of 19
If the G5 is as powerful as the rumors suggest, than I expect no MP in the first release. Probably a combination of G4 duals in the middle and G5 single at the top. Yields will also play a part.
post #18 of 19
2 scenarios to consider:

At first, they might not want to risk running short on stock of G5s by placing 2 in some machines. They'd be better of stockpiling for a lower-end DP or MP later.

Also, depending on the real MHz will be of one high-end G5 processor, they might not need to do it to look OK.
post #19 of 19
[quote]Originally posted by The Swan:
<strong>Apple should not wait one second longer to release the G5, in ANY form, than they have to. Apple will be much better off to push the G5 out the door as a single processor than wait even a month to build enough supply to do dual processors.</strong><hr></blockquote>
Perhaps that was the mindset with the G4 and how they released it before realizing the errata bug...?
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