Originally posted by JBL
While I agree that neither Programmer or moki are insiders, I would like to hear a little more about what they think about these benchmarks. As I see it, the MB benchmarks are a little better than expected but not ridiculous. It is a little suspicious that the G4 and P4 benchmarks are spot on what BareFeats got. I am not sure whether to think that proves they are fake (need help from some smarter people on that). It is also a little strange that the Dual benchmarks are as good as they are for Bryce since it isn't threaded. Here I will take Programmer's word that it doesn't prove it is a fake, but it doesn't seem to make it more likely? I mean that isn't that a big improvement to get out of more Level 3 cache (etc)? I like Programmer's posts on this kind of thing because he usually manages to keep all the various details in mind. So I guess I will second Markus's request for more thoughts from Programmer even if I don't assume he will have THE answer.
I'd also like to hear some cryptic comment from moki because he really does seem to have inside contacts and it would be interesting to know if these benchmarks are in line with what he has been hearing.
I'm definitely not an Apple insider although people send me things occasionally, apparently for the same reason that you're asking for my opinion. I am an insider on other, occasionally semi-related topics but I'm not going to tell you what I'm not allowed to tell you about.
On the subject of these supposed benchmarks I don't really have an opinion. None of the supposed reasons to reject this information are any better than the information itself. The fact that the non-970 numbers match what BareFeats lists means nothing more than somebody (if these are true) used BareFeats' tests on the 970 box and just quoted BareFeats' results for the older machines to save themselves some work. If I had a 970 box I sure as heck wouldn't be running benchmarks on my 3 GHz P4 or my 1.42 dual G4! Some of the other numbers seem a little inconsistent but we don't know enough about the tests, the hardware, or even how the data was collected, sent to MB, and then transcribed into their article. This stuff is NDA'd up the wazoo so anybody doing this kind of thing is going to be awfully nervous and inclined to make mistakes.
Having said that, however, this is pandering to exactly
what we want to hear, and that alone makes it suspect. I don't understand why some people like "playing" others in this way, but some do so you might as well expect it. Usually those people tend to exaggerate it a bit too much... whereas these numbers run on the ragged edge of believability so its either somebody who is good at this or they are real (but possibly a little muddled). They are also traditional Mac benchmarks, as opposed to SPECmarks and Dhrystones, which makes it a little more believable because its the kind of thing the most people have access to.
The 970s are
going to be fast, especially on floating point calcs and any memory bound AltiVec code (which is pretty much any AltiVec code). They should also do fairly well with code not specifically optimized for the 970. Apple and it's major partners (like Adobe) may very well have had these machines for a few months now, and important pieces of the OS and apps like Photoshop may have been recompiled and hand optimized for the new processor. The tests put forward by MB are ones that the 970 will likely be good at but the speeds presented... well... I can't say that they are too good to be true, but they are definitely stretching credibility. Apple and IBM have outdone themselves if the numbers are true and I'll be sorely tempted to upgrade if so. If the numbers aren't true then their inventor has been paying attention.