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New Set of Next-Gen Power Mac Rumors

post #1 of 153
Thread Starter 
The dirt I got is as follows:

Apple has been working with a new Motorola CPU and a fundamentally different motherboard design since the Fall of 2001.
My source tells me that this design has been delayed due to cooling and reliability issues however (and this is the part that made me wonder) this new CPU and motherboard will not make it into the traditional "PowerMac" line but rather a new high dollar workstation system putting it in the same class as the low-end IBM RS/6000's and bottom-end Sun Ultra Sparc III workstations.
From this information my guess is Macintosh Workstations starting in the $5,0000 US price range at the low end.
I post this because information, not because it is especially earth-shattering, but it does seem to indicate that Apple has not one, but two platform upgrades they are working on. It did occur to me to ask my source if he thought the "other" platform was an upgraded XServe, but he flatly said no way, the other processor simply would not work in a 1u case.
Throughout this conversation, these details seem to make sense considering Apple's moves into the high-end multimedia design and content market.
Next Generation "Macintosh Workstations" for the High End customers.
Upgraded PowerMac G4's for the "Prosumer" marketplace. (I hate that marketing term "Prosumer", sounds like a something you do after a bad meal).
Oh, and all the detail I got about the Next Generation CPU and motherboard design is that "It's something that Apple engineered pretty much on thier own. However it will be fabbed by Motorola and possibly IBM".
I know this is long on speculation and short on details, but if you folks ask me specific questions I *MIGHT* be able to gather more info, for some reason my source seems rather giddy about spilling the beans on what he knows about these new systems and to be honest he's rather miffed about the whole .Mac situation. Perhaps this is his little rebellion of sorts or maybe he's not considered the ramifications of what will happen to him if he violates his NDA.

Well Post Away!
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post #2 of 153
:eek:

Rumour Troll...!

Everybody run!
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post #3 of 153
[running and screaming]

Help, I'm not fast enough! He's catching me! Aaarrrrggggg...

[/running and screaming]

// Troll places panicking-head-on-a-stick in post as trophy --- <img src="graemlins/surprised.gif" border="0" alt="[Surprised]" /> ---&gt;

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Ebby ]</p>
horrid misuse of cool technology
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horrid misuse of cool technology
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post #4 of 153
Apple doesn't design CPU's. They have plenty of experience designing chipset and ASICs but I seriously doubt that they would design a processor for fabbing.

Honestly what could they do Motherboard wise to compete with Sun? They still have to use a Moto processor and they will still be limited by todays Memory and technology. I'm sorry I think your friend has had one too many beers.

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: hmurchison ]</p>
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post #5 of 153
I say 'Bah!'

Chip development is not an easy secret to keep. We'd have heard about it by now if its in as late a stage of production as you say.
this is the way the world ends
this is the way the world ends
this is the way the world ends
not with a bang, but with a wintel machine

-T.S. Eliot
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this is the way the world ends
this is the way the world ends
this is the way the world ends
not with a bang, but with a wintel machine

-T.S. Eliot
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post #6 of 153
I don't think I really believe this rumour, but the concept is pretty compelling. With all of the high end video production aquisitions Apple has been making lately, something like this would make a lot of sense.

Apple has no hardware that could compete with the solutions available from vendors like IBM, SUN, or SGI. The software purchases Apples has made, clearly indicate that this is an arena Apple would like to play in. Steve and Co. are not idiots. They can not believe that production houses will seriously consider replacing their current vendors with Apple. These are not customers that are going to pay premium prices for the industrial design of the cases, or the ease of use of the OS, or .Mac services. They need reliable and powerful solutions, which nothing from Apple can currently provide. Apple only owning a bunch of video software and expecting that will move the current hardware would be beyond idiocy.

Now, how Apple delivers the power needed is open to debate. Will they use a new Moto chip, go with system level clustering as a boost, use Power cpus? Will they buy a hardware company like SGI that has products that can compete in this space? No one knows, but rumours like this is why most of us come to the AI forums, so it is fun to speculate.

My questions:
Numa memory architecture?
Does this new chip have Altivec?
PPC based?
Book E compliant?
mhz range to start?
64 bit? if yes 32 compatible?
When would this be launched?

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
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"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
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post #7 of 153
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Ebby:
<strong>[running and screaming]

Help, I'm not fast enough! He's catching me! Aaarrrrggggg...

[/running and screaming]

// Troll places panicking-head-on-a-stick in post as trophy --- <img src="graemlins/surprised.gif" border="0" alt="[Surprised]" /> ---&gt;

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Ebby ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

In the realm of rampant speculation and theory I don't entirely grasp the whole Rumor Troll reference.
Oh well
<img src="graemlins/bugeye.gif" border="0" alt="[Skeptical]" />
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post #8 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by hmurchison:
<strong>Apple doesn't desing CPU's. They have plenty of experience designing chipset and ASICs but I seriously doubt that they would design a processor for fabbing.

Honestly what could they do Motherboard wise to compete with Sun? They still have to use a Moto processor and they will still be limited by todays Memory and technology. I'm sorry I think your friend has had one too many beers.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Apple does design CPUs. They may not have 100% input from conception to fabbing, but Apple has some experience with CPU design. They had a posting on their employment section a year or so back looking for CPU engineers. They were involved in the design of all of the PPC chips. They were a major investor and co-founding partner of ARM.

The part of the rumor dealing with a "fundamentally different motherboard design" would probably indicate improved memory and other subsystems. It would reasonable to expect that if they were working on true workstation class machines with a workstation class chip, that those machines would have far superior memory architecture. A major limitation of memory systems on todays desktop computers is price. It would far to expensive and unrealistic to implement things like Numa architecture et al, for anything less that multi-thousand dollar workstations.

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
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"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
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post #9 of 153
[quote]Apple doesn't desing CPU's.<hr></blockquote>

Apple has had a hand in designing the PPC CPUs from the beginning... In fact, Altivec was largely based on an Apple design for a vector processor.

[quote]They have plenty of experience designing chipset and ASICs but I seriously doubt that they would design a processor for fabbing. <hr></blockquote>

They wouldn't design the entire chip, but that's the beauty of the Book E spec-- it allows a customer of Moto or IBM to specify all sorts of stuff to add to a chip.

A Book E chip designed to Apple's specs using the e500 (or perhaps an IBM core) is entirely possible.

[quote]Chip development is not an easy secret to keep.<hr></blockquote>

Oh, I don't know. I'm sure there are a few people who know what Apple have planned for their next processor, but they certainly aren't spilling the beans... Think of how many conflicting rumors we've got-- IBM is designing the next chip. Moto is designing the next chip. AMD is designing the next chip. Apple is going with Hypertransport. Apple will use RapidIO. Lots of rumors, very few facts.
post #10 of 153
They took away his free email so he is going to risk a lawsuit? See, if it weren't for that line we might have bought it. Not an unlikely idea though.
Stuck in an infinite loop waiting for an Apple PDA...

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Stuck in an infinite loop waiting for an Apple PDA...

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post #11 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by hmurchison:
<strong>Apple doesn't desing CPU's. They have plenty of experience designing chipset and ASICs but I seriously doubt that they would design a processor for fabbing.

Honestly what could they do Motherboard wise to compete with Sun? They still have to use a Moto processor and they will still be limited by todays Memory and technology. I'm sorry I think your friend has had one too many beers.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Actually, Apple has some pretty serious CPU talent inhouse. No, not as much as Intel and IBM and such, but remember that all of these players have been laying off people on and off for the last few years. Apple also has an uncanny ability of hiring absolutely great people.

And any project like this would not have to be undertaken in solitude, nor would it be a ground up design. It's a PowerPC, and IBM and Mot can and would lend their talent to the effort, especially if they would benefit from it's production. It would most likely build off of an existing platform - probably the G4. To a lesser degree, this is how the G4 came to be with much of the design of Altivec coming from Apple.

Motorola designs primarily for an embedded market, so they aren't designing chips that primarily meet Apple's needs. IBM also has its own goals, and while the POWER line would be wonderful, it sacrifices affordability and portability for speed.

Neither party is designing for Apple's market, so it makes sense that Apple would maneuver to take that role. Apple has a ton of chipset talent and instead of designing a CPU and wrapping a chipset around it, they'd probably design a modern chipset and glue a chip and maybe a GPU to it.

After all, by most accounts the G4 is a very fast chip, and two is even faster. Many of the problems with these systems are the poor support between the CPU and the chipset. Now, if Apple can address these problems and crank up the clock speed, then we have something we can talk about.

There's absolutely no reason, should Apple direct the design of a chip, why it could not have a 333MHz FSB, Hypertransport support, on-chip memory controller, and run at 1.6GHz. Sure it might be hot as hell, but if you are building a workstation class system, who cares. Moto won't make that concession since it doesn't make sense for embedded systems, but IBM has shown what you can do with a PowerPC instruction set. And we have to throw away all of the arguments why this can be true in the G4, because it would be a new design.

The Powermac line would carry on, scaled back in some ways, and the xMac or whatever would take the high end for all of the nifty new apps that Apple is securing.

If the case is real, then it lends support to this strategy. The amount of cooling in the case is wrong for any dual G4 system that might ship. But a much hotter chip (or two) would fit. Dual full-sized drive bays makes sense (though I'd think that hot-swap drives ala Xserve would be useful as well) and it fits with other comments that we've heard. nVidia sounds like they should have a role in this, maybe bringing some high-end video to the game.

I wouldn't discount this too quickly.
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post #12 of 153
Just to add a little (well, maybe very little) fuel...

In August 2000, Apple filed for a patent on some graphic tech that seems to be derived from Raycers patents. The team that worked on the new patent are listed, and most came from other companies.
Among those names were a pile of ex-SGI people including...

Joseph P. Bratt who appears on SGI patents for multiproccessing, specialized memory/cache access, and RISC design.

Emerson S Fang who appears on SGI patents for logic circuit design.

There are quite a few others from other companies whose names appear on other patents for high speed memory and storage design, msg queue procedures and multiproccessing, and video multidisplay and video controllers, and diverse graphic hardware.

My apologies that I haven't tracked 'em all down yet, but this shows a good start.
*sigh*
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*sigh*
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post #13 of 153
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Tulkas:
<strong>I don't think I really believe this rumour, but the concept is pretty compelling. With all of the high end video production aquisitions Apple has been making lately, something like this would make a lot of sense.

My questions:
Numa memory architecture?
Does this new chip have Altivec?
PPC based?
Book E compliant?
mhz range to start?
64 bit? if yes 32 compatible?
When would this be launched?
</strong><hr></blockquote>

Well answers came quickly...

1) This is a PPC based CPU
2) He thinks that the CPU must follow the Book-E spec because the core is based on a IBM design, however the rest of it is all Apple. (I don't know how to intelligently comment on this one)
3) 64 bit yes, he doesn't think there is any 32 bit compatibility layer in place.
4) CPU speed is 800mHz
5) Test machines are running a Darwin varient, not MacOS X
6) At the rate these systems fall apart he surmises that it will be a very long while before these systems see the light of day.

Personally, what he's saying sounds realistic, but with this information it doesn't look like we'll be seeing this platform any time soon. Especially considering that it seems like he is working on a hardware development platform and no software integration has been done yet.
But heck it's still alot of fun to speculate.

Edited for spelling

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Commander Max ]</p>
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post #14 of 153
in terms of keeping is top secret, this has been done before.. not much came out of Transmeta before they made their Crusoe announcements....

I actually find this to be extremely possible, and a logical expansion of Apple's current business plan.. They've the software puzzle complete with an extremely powerful lineup... Jaguar Server, WebObjects, Final Cut Pro, Shake, Logic, etc.. A high end pmac completely designed for the high end user in the science and creative fields...

why not...
post #15 of 153
What caught my attention, from the pictures of a new PowerMac case, was the statement at top of the line drawing. One said, "next generation G5 ready." If these are real, it looks like the hardware to deliver those new high end video applications is coming. This new processor, the Apple G5, will be announced at the same time as the new PowerMacs. The G5 will appear later on, and the new case is ready for the update. It fits in with the original post by Commander Max.
post #16 of 153
That's what I get for talking out my ass. Thanks for the info fellas. That's why I come here...generous portions of humble pie ...yum yum yum.
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post #17 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by apple.otaku:
<strong>They took away his free email so he is going to risk a lawsuit? See, if it weren't for that line we might have bought it. Not an unlikely idea though.</strong><hr></blockquote>

He didn't really say that....commander merely stated that his source was giddy to reveal information....and that the .mac crap could have helped to egg him on but not necesarily did.
vulture!

I like this rumor....its sensible and believable....I wouldn't put it past apple to intro a "Macintosh workstation" they could call it Xwork.
apple releasing Xserve is a pretty big risk on Apples part....on the one hand they have a very competitive(price/performance) network solution...on the other hand Apple has no foothold in the server market and new markets are hard to break into even if you are microsoft(xbox isn't doing to well) and if apple doesn't establish stable footing in the server market...then they could stand to lose alot of money and rep....but if they do...then they stand to make immense rep and cash.
the same goes for a workstation if you ask me....another factor to consider...is the fact that processing speeds are still slow(compared to our windows cousins) and we have memory bottlenecks....we've had these for quite some time...and Apple hasn't been doing all that much about them....a couple possiblities as to why are 1) apple is to busy organizing their leaps into new markets 2)apple lacks the resources needed to make these improvements...so they are entering other markets to steal the attention away from their desktop shortcomings. 3) they forgot
at anyrate...there are many scenarios that can be thought of.
its pretty safe to say a powermac update is coming...a workstation is definatly possible as well....but it might not be till further down the road.
I would like to see a workstation released...casue then maybe apple could tone down their prices on the powermacs, cause part of the reason they are priced as they are is cause they are billed as pro machines.
I'm looking forword to buying my next computer...it will be a powermac tower(hoping that new design is real)so even if apple doesn't release a workstation soon....if they release better powermacs(that are more efficient) then I'll be more than happy

-wr
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post #18 of 153
[quote] The Powermac line would carry on, scaled back in some ways, and the xMac or whatever would take the high end for all of the nifty new apps that Apple is securing. <hr></blockquote>

Lets be honest. If the Powermac continues to lag far behind the basic performance levels of say a top end PC (Dell Precision Workstation 340 with a 2.53GHz chip for instance at $2,037.00 V say 933MHz PowerPC G4 $2,299.00) then people will gradually migrate increasingly to PC's.

No matter how cool, elegant OSX is, it does not and will never compensate for a lack of basic grunt especially when you are trying to convince 'Switchers'.

This arguement applies less so to the bottom end of Apples line up ie LCD iMac, eMac, iBook but at the present Powermac range which is at present the only 'Pro' option available and at a price point people expect performance for bucks.

To argue for instance that the new G4 case with it's attention to cooling is simply created for a 'top end' workstation machine, leaving the present Powermac range 'in the middle' misses the point; that it's the middle where Apple stands or falls. No one should forget the pickle Apple got itself into but concentrating at the 'top end'. Especially in the present economic climate.

I am sure Apple will bring out a specialist top end work station (xMac whatever)to compliment Shake type video production software. I am sure it will be at a price point well above existing models.
But one of the key selling points of the Powermac line is that of a 'digital hub' and the ability to perform in the workplace where otherwise a PC would site. On a parity of lets say the Xserve to other comparative PC servers. Then the elegance of the software and product design with great build quality and reliability will set it apart from the pack and define what is, essentially 'THE' Mac market.

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Moonraker ]</p>
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post #19 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Moonraker:
<strong>


No matter how cool, elegant OSX is, it does not and will never compensate for a lack of basic grunt especially when you are trying to convince 'Switchers'.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

I can name 3 people who have swtiched to the mac from the wintel world because of OS X. They don't care that much about the speed of a high end Intel.
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post #20 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Eupfhoria:
<strong>

I can name 3 people who have swtiched to the mac from the wintel world because of OS X. They don't care that much about the speed of a high end Intel.</strong><hr></blockquote>

me too! me too!
but 6 people isn't much...of course I'm sure thousands across the country have heeded the call of X

but pro end guys generally don't care how fruit flavored a computer is if it can't get the job done...then it isn't acceptable
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post #21 of 153
[quote] can name 3 people who have swtiched to the mac from the wintel world because of OS X. They don't care that much about the speed of a high end Intel. <hr></blockquote>

It's a general point Eufhoria. Sure there will be movement and OSX 'IS' an elegant piece of software and very compelling ( especially with Quartz Extreme in 10.2). BUT just look at the anticipation for the next G4 within Mac ranks. The reason why there is a pile of current model G4's sitting around is that they simply do not offer enough performance for buck.

Just think how much 'more' compelling OS X would be on a G4 with say 1.6 GHz with DDR and improved bus speeds (releasing more of the true power of the G4 chip) would be to potential Switchers.

My point is basically that if Apple continue to allow the G4 to edge along at it's current level of performance the Powermac will wither and die. For that reason I see every reason to believe that the new G4 case with additional cooling etc is for the 'G4/G5' Powermac; not a high end workstation model only.

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Moonraker ]</p>
"Beyond the rumour sites. Way beyond"

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post #22 of 153
i currently own a high end AMD machine. Ive never owned a MAC before. And if i had 4k right now i would buy a new Powermac.

OSX is VERY tempting when you run a wintel machine and you have to reset it DAILY just to keep it running correctly. and you have to REFORMAT almost on a yearly basis when the BSOD's start nockin on your doorstep.

now granted apple cant just sit on their cool OS forever, but as long as i can play games like Q3A, and WC3, and D2, and Starcraft, and Redfaction with a good vid card like a GF4 or a new ATI 9700, i can live with a little slower bus speed/cpu speed.
post #23 of 153
Aris
[quote]now granted apple cant just sit on their cool OS forever, but as long as i can play games like Q3A, and WC3, and D2, and Starcraft, and Redfaction with a good vid card like a GF4 or a new ATI 9700, i can live with a little slower bus speed/cpu speed. <hr></blockquote>

I think that's the point Aris. Presently it is not a "little slower bus speed/ cpu speed" but a LOT slower. Really as most know it is the motherboard and bus/ memory speed that holds the Powermacs back quite a bit.

Right now if you put a $399 ATI 9700 in a Powermac you would be wasting your cash as the card would never approach saturation.

To bring us to the "little slower" position we need more from the G4.
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post #24 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Moonraker:
<strong>Aris


I think that's the point Aris. Presently it is not a "little slower bus speed/ cpu speed" but a LOT slower. Really as most know it is the motherboard and bus/ memory speed that holds the Powermacs back quite a bit.

Right now if you put a $399 ATI 9700 in a Powermac you would be wasting your cash as the card would never approach saturation.

To bring us to the "little slower" position we need more from the G4.</strong><hr></blockquote>

i'll agree with you that apple needs to make their machines faster to take a larger portion of the market share.

but honestly. my roomate has a G4 DP 800mhz powermac and a gf3 and he gets over 100 fps on any game out now with all the settings turned up. i think your overexagerating a little bit.
post #25 of 153
That new tower in the spy photos has some serious cooling capacity. No G4 would need that sort of cooling, it's got to be something else entirely.

Remember all those rumors in December and January about the G5 being ready? Maybe it wasn't "killed", but some bugs were found, or maybe supply issues came up. Apple delayed the release for one product cycle, and now we're at the end of that cycle. The last Powermac update wreaked of a stop-gap update, one that wasn't well planned or thought out in advance. All it really took was dropping in faster CPUs into an existing design, not exactly heavy R&D needed for that. What's Apple been doing with their Powermac hardware engineers? Well, we know this much, they've been working on a tower that's got enough cooling capacity to keep a Power 4 chip cozy and cool (well, maybe not quite, but damn near!).

I think we're in for a mondo surprise in a few weeks, a new Powermac that's going to blow some minds and send others crying for mommy. Apple is finally going to have a reason for charing extra money for their computers. Once again. Apple will have performance that Wintels only dream of. John Carmack will cream his pants over the new Powermacs, Bill Gates will get jealous and say nasty things about Apple, and Steve Jobs will masturbate live on stage.

It's all coming together...
post #26 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Junkyard Dawg:
<strong>That new tower in the spy photos has some serious cooling capacity. No G4 would need that sort of cooling, it's got to be something else entirely.

Remember all those rumors in December and January about the G5 being ready? Maybe it wasn't "killed", but some bugs were found, or maybe supply issues came up. Apple delayed the release for one product cycle, and now we're at the end of that cycle. The last Powermac update wreaked of a stop-gap update, one that wasn't well planned or thought out in advance. All it really took was dropping in faster CPUs into an existing design, not exactly heavy R&D needed for that. What's Apple been doing with their Powermac hardware engineers? Well, we know this much, they've been working on a tower that's got enough cooling capacity to keep a Power 4 chip cozy and cool (well, maybe not quite, but damn near!).

I think we're in for a mondo surprise in a few weeks, a new Powermac that's going to blow some minds and send others crying for mommy. Apple is finally going to have a reason for charing extra money for their computers. Once again. Apple will have performance that Wintels only dream of. John Carmack will cream his pants over the new Powermacs, Bill Gates will get jealous and say nasty things about Apple, and Steve Jobs will masturbate live on stage.

It's all coming together...</strong><hr></blockquote>


i honestly hope your right... but im going to keep my expectations low so i either
1. am not dissapointed if your wrong
or
2. so im really really excited if your right
post #27 of 153
[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: gifted expert ]</p>
post #28 of 153
"To bring us to the "little slower" position we need more from the G4."

Yep.

JD.

I pay to see the last paragraph. Steve Jobs bending Wintel over for a good hosing, but instead of the usual Photoshop bake off...: 'Yeah baby...how's it feel now...HUH...Bintel..(?)..pipeline this...(refering to the size of his deeper Power4 pipeline...) take this...eat my fpu...you...mhz whore...can you feel my integer? HUH? HUH!??! Can you take my bandwidth (refs Rio...) Width...it's all about WIDTH...BA-BEEE...you...oh gawd...we have...lift off...(refering to his double core whopper...)"

I'm not too sure what the Macworld crowd or Cnet would make of it though...

///...er...ahem... <img src="graemlins/embarrassed.gif" border="0" alt="[Embarrassed]" />

Lemon Bon Bon

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Lemon Bon Bon ]</p>
We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #29 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Aris:
<strong>now granted apple cant just sit on their cool OS forever, but as long as i can play games like Q3A, and WC3, and D2, and Starcraft, and Redfaction with a good vid card like a GF4 or a new ATI 9700, i can live with a little slower bus speed/cpu speed.</strong><hr></blockquote>

while q3a runs fine there will be a bunch of games coming out that will have hi-res textures and detailed models and maybe even half a AI and then your computer will have to move a lot of data around and for that you'd need a bigger bus. surely you wouldn't want to have 5 second pauses in doom 3 when your computer decides it's time to load a few bumpmaps and textures and a model or two of a few enemies...

anyhow, while the cpu speed i not that pivotal to me, although I do a radiosity render or two now and then, I'd very much like a faster bus simply because I work with huge files usually. and those do benefit from a faster bus, afaik.
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oy!
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post #30 of 153
It's not inconceivable that Apple would want to have significant input into their next chip.

They've already done the impossible with Jaguar and Xserve AND getting MAYA 4.5 on the Mac (Not to mentioning having Open GL and Nvidia in on the party). Things thought impossible or unlikely are here.

If Apple want to get into the 'Shake' space...hardware wise...I expect something significant to happen within the next year.

The G4 may 'limp on' with DDR and a mhz bump...and Rio early next year. The G4's fpu performance in 3d is very weak. The G4 is a product of neglect. A fine debut chip spoiled by politics, incompetence and...?

But a 'True' next gen' processor...'G5' is what's needed to be taken seriously in the PC workstation space.

We might no want nor care for mhz. But performance counts. Bandwidth counts. Fpu performance in 3D counts.

"while q3a runs fine there will be a bunch of games coming out that will have hi-res textures and detailed models and maybe even half a AI and then your computer will have to move a lot of data around and for that you'd need a bigger bus. surely you wouldn't want to have 5 second pauses in doom 3 when your computer decides it's time to load a few bumpmaps and textures and a model or two of a few enemies...

anyhow, while the cpu speed i not that pivotal to me, although I do a radiosity render or two now and then, I'd very much like a faster bus simply because I work with huge files usually. and those do benefit from a faster bus, afaik. "

Yep.

Lemon Bon Bon

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Lemon Bon Bon ]</p>
We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #31 of 153
(overthought unravelling)

[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: G-News ]</p>
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post #32 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Lemon Bon Bon:
<strong>
If Apple want to get into the 'Shake' space...hardware wise...I expect something significant to happen within the next year.

The G4 may 'limp on' with DDR and a mhz bump...and Rio early next year. The G4's fpu performance in 3d is very weak. The G4 is a product of neglect. A fine debut chip spoiled by politics, incompetence and...?

...

We might no want nor care for mhz. But performance counts. Bandwidth counts. Fpu performance in 3D counts.


[ 07-25-2002: Message edited by: Lemon Bon Bon ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

I'd agree with all of that except that the G4's fpu performance is very weak. When you look at the shoot-outs you find athlons doing 3-d at just about proportionally faster speeds. Athlon 1.6Ghz (not whatever weird XP rating) goes about 60% faster than a Ghz G4. And you find P4's, though not as efficient, just dusting everybody, with a 2.5Ghz chip returning a little more than 2x the performance. Maybe 2.2x, so that a 2.53Ghz P4 goes about a 110% faster in 3-d stuff. On a clock for clock basis the G4's single double precision fpu seems to do quite well, but there just aren't enough clocks and it ends up getting smoked for any task where it can't use it's superior SIMD (it's one saving grace ATM)

Now, if the thing was just 'faster' it'd be quite competitive as it is. But, unfortunately, it keeps puttering along at 50% Moore's Law, and the performance gap keeps widening.

Die-shrink plus true DDR would make a good PM G4 chip for the (very) short term, but the G4 must surely be headed to the consumer and laptop line-ups now, with something else entirely coming to the PM.

I think (hope) that in 12-18 months we ought to see consumer macs with faster cooler G4's than the PM's ever got and that the Professional lines will move to a truly worthy chip. hmmm... There's a lot of cooling potential in those cases now coming off the Apple production line... I wonder what's in there?

It's probably a G4 for now (though maybe a seriously pumped-up version) but there must be something else on the horizon.
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post #33 of 153
"Q: There have been questions about the high price of Microsoft's Office product for OS X and the low volume of sales. Should Microsoft consider dropping the price?
A: If they're concerned about the volume they're selling, I certainly think that's one of the things to look at. In a tough economy, with the price of a computer continually migrating downward, if you're spending $1,000 or $1,500 on a computer, you don't want to spend $500 on a software package. That's a challenge they have."

Apple lecturing M$ on volume. I like the irony in that...

Lemon Bon Bon
<img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" /> <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" />
We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #34 of 153
I do not "know" that the G4 is bus limited and so does very few outside Apple. The public mantra seem to be that "if G4 had DDR it would smoke the AMD Intel offerings".
I assume that we soon will have a singel CPU in the 1GHz range in the low end with DDR, it will be intresting to se it it is faster than the 1GHz G4 or even the 1GHz upgrades for 100 MHz bus G4/AGP computers.

And Quake 3 as a yardstick for 3D? It is a old application. Many Macs that do well in Q3 struggle with Medal of Honor despite that it is Q3 based.

Unreal Tournament 2003 is just around the corner, I hope, and that will set new standards for 3D. Some PC sites alredy use UT 2003 to test the latest GPUs from nVIDIA and ATI.

Apples push for video work on the ohme computer is really a good reason for having really good CPU performance.

The 500 MHz stall meant a lot of lost ground and so far Apple have made no sign of catching up. Getting a 1.4MHz CPU out in a month or two is just keeping up with half the clock speed of the Intel CPUs. They absolutly have to start to get closer to show that they are able to close the performance gap over time.

How would ATI fare if they never could get close to nVIDA in performance that their top of the line was like last years offers form nVIDIA?

ATI did catch up nVIDIA that had the lead for a long time and now they are leapfrogging each other. Motorola on the other hand....
post #35 of 153
There really isn't much to pick apart with this rumour... its all fairly plausible. One thing that struck me with TheRegister rumours last year was that there were one or two quotes that said "we got the latest G5 back from Motorola". Perhaps it was just a funny was of phrasing it, but you normally wouldn't say that unless you sent them something in order to get it back from them. That would be the case if it was an Apple designed PowerPC.

AIM includes some provisions for sharing of design technology so no doubt Apple has some really good starting points for a new design, and they probably have a bunch of work that was done on the CORE2000 that was supposed to follow the G2 (but never materialized). They also may have gotten a few people from Somerset, in addition to all the Apple people taking part in the Somerset projects.

The note about not having a "32-bit compatibility layer" is actually more correct than saying it has one. PowerPC 32bit/64bit compatibility is built into BookE and isn't a "layer", its just a single bit switch in the CPU that modifies the behaviour of a handful of integer instructions. It can run 32-bit code but it is not emulated.

The 800 MHz clock rate hints at a highly superscalar design, rather like the POWER4. If this is a made up rumour then it is clearly made up with an awareness of the other rumours of IBM involvement. It doesn't fall in line with last year's rumours about high clock rates (&gt;2GHz), however.

"running a Darwin variant, not MacOS X" is a little weird, but it implies things are at a pretty early stage and the HAL hasn't been fully updated for this processor yet. That and the next comment fall in line with a 2003 introduction for these beastly CPUs.

No information about the bus or memory controller.

Market positioning... it makes a lot of sense to build a very powerful workstation-class Mac, but that doesn't mean the PowerMac can be left to languish. Since this beast doesn't sound like it is near term, we'll hopefully see improved performance in the PowerMac line soon (G4 based).
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post #36 of 153
I can believe this rumor. It's just what some clever thinking should expect from Apple. They are an innovator. They do what everyone else thinks is unexpected, not worth the effort or a waste of time.

Imagine a true workstation level Mac. That would be COOL and definitely re-invigorate the market.
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post #37 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Junkyard Dawg:
<strong>...and Steve Jobs will masturbate live on stage.</strong><hr></blockquote>

<img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" /> <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" /> <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" />

Ala Jim Morrison, eh?
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post #38 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Junkyard Dawg:
<strong>That new tower in the spy photos has some serious cooling capacity. No G4 would need that sort of cooling, it's got to be something else entirely.

Remember all those rumors in December and January about the G5 being ready? Maybe it wasn't "killed", but some bugs were found, or maybe supply issues came up. Apple delayed the release for one product cycle, and now we're at the end of that cycle. The last Powermac update wreaked of a stop-gap update, one that wasn't well planned or thought out in advance. All it really took was dropping in faster CPUs into an existing design, not exactly heavy R&D needed for that. What's Apple been doing with their Powermac hardware engineers? Well, we know this much, they've been working on a tower that's got enough cooling capacity to keep a Power 4 chip cozy and cool (well, maybe not quite, but damn near!).

I think we're in for a mondo surprise in a few weeks, a new Powermac that's going to blow some minds and send others crying for mommy. Apple is finally going to have a reason for charing extra money for their computers. Once again. Apple will have performance that Wintels only dream of. John Carmack will cream his pants over the new Powermacs, Bill Gates will get jealous and say nasty things about Apple, and Steve Jobs will masturbate live on stage.

It's all coming together...</strong><hr></blockquote>

Or in Jan, maybe.....
JYD, what's up? You're being awfully optimistic.... <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
*sigh*
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*sigh*
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post #39 of 153
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Programmer:

AIM includes some provisions for sharing of design technology so no doubt Apple has some really good starting points for a new design, and they probably have a bunch of work that was done on the CORE2000 that was supposed to follow the G2 (but never materialized). They also may have gotten a few people from Somerset, in addition to all the Apple people taking part in the Somerset projects.

The note about not having a "32-bit compatibility layer" is actually more correct than saying it has one. PowerPC 32bit/64bit compatibility is built into BookE and isn't a "layer", its just a single bit switch in the CPU that modifies the behaviour of a handful of integer instructions. It can run 32-bit code but it is not emulated.

The 800 MHz clock rate hints at a highly superscalar design, rather like the POWER4. If this is a made up rumour then it is clearly made up with an awareness of the other rumours of IBM involvement. It doesn't fall in line with last year's rumours about high clock rates (&gt;2GHz), however.

"running a Darwin variant, not MacOS X" is a little weird, but it implies things are at a pretty early stage and the HAL hasn't been fully updated for this processor yet. That and the next comment fall in line with a 2003 introduction for these beastly CPUs.

No information about the bus or memory controller.

Market positioning... it makes a lot of sense to build a very powerful workstation-class Mac, but that doesn't mean the PowerMac can be left to languish. Since this beast doesn't sound like it is near term, we'll hopefully see improved performance in the PowerMac line soon (G4 based).[/QB]<hr></blockquote>

I too would like to know more about the motherboard and bus design, but alas, "Deep Mac" isn't talking and has now become cagey with his replies. Rather than put my words in his mouth I'll call it quits with regard to this paticular rumor and not ask for any more details.
For you and others reading my little contribution of water cooler gossip my source nailed the Xserve. The reason I didn't share this piece of info was that I didn't believe it myself. Apple? Rack mounted servers? Enterprise market? "Yeah Right" was my thought. Well here I sit, I could have been legend on Apple Insider and elevated in status with the likes of Kormac, Dorsal M and others. *sniff* Opportunity missed I suppose

All sarcasm aside my source, okay I'll call him "Deep Mac" did share with me some tidbits about Apple's methods and requirements for testing their hardware dev platforms along with some other commentary. NOTE: This is basically a summary of many conversations and information he's shared.

Issue # 1: Cases/Industrial Design.
Deep Mac claims that he has never seen a new Apple case design and maintains that the prototype units he has seen are typical PC full tower beige cases with the new Apple hardware inside. Stuck to the side of these cases are large labels with helpful reminders from Apple Corporate to heed NDA's and other legal agreements. Aside from that, the boxes themselves are indistinguishable from any other PC/Workstation/Server machine in his QA Lab. Deep Mac is unconvinced that 3rd party developers ever see new Apple industrial design concepts, and that leaks of pictures etc. of new Apple Industrial Design must come from Apple itself or a subsidiary.
He did say that he has seen prototype hardware that came equipped with some rather elaborate cooling systems, like refridgeration units strapped on to these units.

Issue #2: Specifications.
Deep Mac claims that the documentation from Apple about the prototype hardware seldom mentions specs. Since he is a Software QA guy whose focus is testing device drivers, all he gets are the Test Requirements, Scenerios and Test Objectives
for the hardware. He gets his specs from the Operating System or reading the printed labels on the devices themselves.

Issue 3#: OS and system software.
In recent memory Deep Mac claims that he has yet to see a test box run a commercial version of the Mac OS, he mentioned that he's seen Rhapsody once on a test box. Instead he's seen AIX, FreeBSD, but of late he's seen more Darwin than anything else. (Makes sense, build up kernel layer of Darwin, integrate with the rest of MacOS X later)

Other tidbits from Deep Mac:
Prepare to be blown away with what Apple has in development over the next two years, and no, it has nothing to due with clockspeed.
And finally, with regard to Apple's strategy in the long-term. Apple wants no less than a 25% marketshare. (Where Deep Mac got this I do not know, nor does he give a time frame)

Food for thought. Like all of you *I* want to know more about these workstation class machines he's talked about. Frankly it's the most exciting thing I've heard in awhile.
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post #40 of 153
[quote]Originally posted by Commander Max:
<strong>Frankly it's the most exciting thing I've heard in awhile.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I won't argue with that assessment.
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