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IBM unveils dual-core PowerPC chips up to 2.5GHz

post #1 of 280
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Presenting at the Power Everywhere Forum 2005 in Japan, IBM today formally introduced a dual-core version of its PowerPC 970 (G5) processor, which could find its way into Apple Power Macs in the coming months.

The 64-bit chips, code-named Antares, contain two processing units per chip, each with their own execution core and Level 1 cache. Additionally, each core includes a storage subsystem with 1MB Level 2 cache, making the chips twice as efficient as IBM's current 970FX PowerPC G5 processors.

Officially labeled the PowerPC 970MP, the chips pack several power conservation features that allow frequency and voltage demands to adjust on the fly. It's also possible to completely cut power to one of chip's cores when high performance computations are not needed.

According to IBM, the 970MP will be made available in speeds ranging from 1.4 to 2.5GHz. It's believed that Apple has been working with prototypes of the chips since 2004 and could use them in a forthcoming update to its Power Mac G5 desktops, the company said.

Along with the dual-core 970MP, IBM today also officially introduced a new family of low-power PowerPC 970FX chips running at speeds up to 1.6GHz with a 512K Level 2 cache. PowerPC 970FX chips are currently used in Apple Power Mac G5 and iMac G5 systems.

Initially, the new 970FX chips will be available in three flavors: 1.2GHz, 1.4GHz and 1.6GHz. IBM says the 1.6GHz version will typically operate at 16 watts while the the two former versions require a cool 13 watts, possibly allowing Apple to release a G5-based PowerBook.

An official press release on the new chips is available in Japanese. As of press time, IBM had yet to update its US website with information on the new chips. A set of slides from the company's presentation are also available via ASCII24, a publication based in Japan.
post #2 of 280
No wonder Apple went with Intel.
Yonah looks to be far more powerful than a
"mobile G5"

And the dual core deal is not as impressive as AMDs offering. Shame.

I'm all for a 1.6 GHZ G5 Powerbook, but, wow. We should have gotten at least 2 GHZ in a mobile chip by now.

I am really glad about the decision now. I was skeptical earlier.
post #3 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by 9secondko

And the dual core deal is not as impressive as AMDs offering. Shame.

On what evidence are you presenting this assertion as a fact?
post #4 of 280
Looks like IBM is trying to show that Apple was wrong. Unfortunately the only major customer they will have for it is Apple, and only for a year or so. Just shows how important it is to be proactive instead of reactive.
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post #5 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by 9secondko


And the dual core deal is not as impressive as AMDs offering. Shame.


What a pile of crock. That will eat any dual core Athlon.
post #6 of 280
What took IBM so long? They should have released these chips (especially the low power G5) a year ago. That would have been just right. As it is:

Too little, too late, too bad.

Hey, I wonder if Freescale's new 90n G4 outperforms the mobile-G5?

(and it's also worth noting that IBM has just demonstrated these chips. It may be half-a-year before they can mass produce them)
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post #7 of 280
"Low-power" g5, by its very nature, will be so dumbed down that any enhancements from the new architecture will be lost. I'm so glad that I bought my PBg4 last friday. What a joke IBM is.
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post #8 of 280
Wow, such a lot of negativity here.

The low power G5s will be cherry picked dies, like AMD cherry picks Athlon 64 dies that run cool and brands them as Turion (35W and 25W max). Intel's max is 27W. I don't know what the max is of this new processor, but if 13W is typical then I imagine that it'll be around 26W or so.

So IBM announces 1.2, 1.4 and 1.6? So what! Previously Apple has had faster machines out than IBM's product line would suggest. Maybe IBM are making 1.8GHz 16W G5s for Apple?

The real issue is the power management features on the latest processors. 13W AVERAGE would be rather poor.

The dual-core looks quite interesting however.
post #9 of 280
The question is : does this chips will ship in Mac before the switch.

My answer is yes for the MP in desktop computers and no for the mobile G5
Of course I could be wrong.
Time will tell
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post #10 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by kenaustus
Looks like IBM is trying to show that Apple was wrong. Unfortunately the only major customer they will have for it is Apple, and only for a year or so. Just shows how important it is to be proactive instead of reactive.

Not really. Like Steve Jobs said, there will be many more great powerpc products to come. This is one of them.
post #11 of 280
It seems pretty clear that this low power chip won't ever be used by Apple. It's lower in Mhz than the lowest-Mhz G5 (the iMac at 1.8 ), and it doesn't make much sense to move a G4 machine to a G5 at this point. They'll probably use the dual core chips in the PowerMac.
post #12 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by 9secondko
No wonder Apple went with Intel.
Yonah looks to be far more powerful than a
"mobile G5"

And the dual core deal is not as impressive as AMDs offering. Shame.

I'm all for a 1.6 GHZ G5 Powerbook, but, wow. We should have gotten at least 2 GHZ in a mobile chip by now.

I am really glad about the decision now. I was skeptical earlier.

ghz does not = preformance. not by a long shot.

i dont feel a need to go any further than that.
post #13 of 280
The dual G5's look good, 1MByte L2 cache should being the performance level up to the 2.7GHz level of the older model.

I don't think that there is any question that Apple will use these. One question though is whether these chips will be made on the 90nm lines, or whether they will wait for the 65. That affects the timing of the introduction.

If they are 90nm then we might expect them for January, possibly (though doubtfully) for September. 65nm might mean March, at best, unless IBM has made great strides in the new process (which is certainly possible).

Will Apple use these singly, or will we see dual duals as well? Hmm.

If they run cool enough (and are cheap enough), maybe dual dual Powermacs and single duals for the iMacs.

Where do the Powerbooks fit into this? Despite what some here are saying, we won't have an idea until we know more about the FX's. I can see a possibility, but it's too early to tell.
post #14 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by jms698
What took IBM so long? They should have released these chips (especially the low power G5) a year ago. That would have been just right. As it is:

Too little, too late, too bad.

Hey, I wonder if Freescale's new 90n G4 outperforms the mobile-G5?

(and it's also worth noting that IBM has just demonstrated these chips. It may be half-a-year before they can mass produce them)

i personally would have prefered these annoucements a day after steve jobs intel lovin speech :-) Sorry, steve is wrong this time
post #15 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
i personally would have prefered these annoucements a day after steve jobs intel lovin speech :-) Sorry, steve is wrong this time

Apple's switch is most likely more complicated then we think.

These processors are still behind in the sense that they are coming out 8 months after the x86 duals are. We expected to see IBM's duals BEFORE the x86 ones. Why this is so, we don't know. But it is telling.

The speculation that they would debut at 3.0GHz is also obviously wrong (I kept on insisting that they would be at 2.5, but people would flame me about that).

Nevertheless, if Apple comes out with a dual dual Express machine within the next 9 months or so, I will buy it. The sooner the better, because I don't like buying the first iteration of ANY new technology.

But, going to Intel is probably still better for the long haul.
post #16 of 280
My first post........

I just got my PB so I guess I will just wait for Macintel PB's

post #17 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
ghz does not = preformance. not by a long shot.

I dont feel a need to go any further than that.

Um, in the case of the G5, it is already common knowledge that the AMD Athlon 64 keeps up very well and the Pentium M destroys the G4. The G5 does better than G4 at many things, but requires at least a certain amount of clock speed to be effective. I would say 1.8 at minimum (yes, I am aware of the Powermacs low end debut at 1.6 and that was quite a shame in the benchmarks wasn't it?). A current 2.1 GHz Pentium M would probably outperform it. I hate to say this as I have bee anticipating a G5 Powerbook for quite some time, but it is time to face facts. Apple did the right thing going to Intel. This 1.6 G5 would have been nice a year ago. Now it is quite seriously a joke. I would not mind buying one as it will be superior to the current G4, but it will not blow it away like it would if it were at 2 GHZ.

I cannot wait to see a barefeats.com benchmark pitting the 970 FX-low power against ANYTHING. Be it a G4, Pentium M or Current Imac G5.

GHZ DOES matter, contrary to some opinion.

If that were the case, no one would mind the 3 GHZ miss by IBM. In the case of AMD, clock for clock and Ahtlon 64 FX runs neck and neck with 2 G5. The G5s are faster when they are clocked higher and AMD is faster when they are clocked higher. However, the Pentium M runs almost as fast at 700 MHZ less.

Clock it at 3 GHZ and the M would be an almighty jugernaught.

Architecture is king, sure. But, GHZ is what gets the king around.

That V8 engine in your Mustang cobra would not be so fast if it did not rev so high.

I don't think I need to go any further than that.

Too little, too late from IBM. They tried to play Apple and got dropped. Now they are trying to save face. Apple does not need to beg IBM and wait forever while IBM gets cozy with Apple competitors and puts Apple (longstanding and loyal customer) on hold for them (just plain bad business ethics). They can just get BETTER CPUs from someone else. Bold move. And we are all going to benefit from it.

As far as G5 vs. AMD and Intel CPUs, go to anandtech.com, who recently did a thorough comparison.
post #18 of 280
Now, while some may have seen Apples Intel announcement as somewhat of a "knee-jerk" reaction to the slow development of the G5, todays revelations of the new 970MP may make those people believe that Apple might have shot themselves in the foot going with Intel.
This may prove not to be the case at all, as the statement says...

".. the 970MP will be made available in speeds ranging from 1.4 to 2.5GHz. It's believed that Apple has been working with prototypes of the chips since 2004 and could use them in a forthcoming update to its Power Mac G5 desktops.."

Apple have previously seen and tested these chips long before they announced a move to Intel, therefore I would trust the Apple techs intuition on the future of Mac processor type and not go down the road of "I told you so".

My $0.02
post #19 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by 9secondko
Um, in the case of the G5, it is already common knowledge that the AMD Athlon 64 keeps up very well and the Pentium M destroys the G4. The G5 does better than G4 at many things, but requires at least a certain amount of clock speed to be effective. I would say 1.8 at minimum (yes, I am aware of the Powermacs low end debut at 1.6 and that was quite a shame in the benchmarks wasn't it?). A current 2.1 GHz Pentium M would probably outperform it. I hate to say this as I have bee anticipating a G5 Powerbook for quite some time, but it is time to face facts. Apple did the right thing going to Intel. This 1.6 G5 would have been nice a year ago. Now it is quite seriously a joke. I would not mind buying one as it will be superior to the current G4, but it will not blow it away like it would if it were at 2 GHZ.

I cannot wait to see a barefeats.com benchmark pitting the 970 FX-low power against ANYTHING. Be it a G4, Pentium M or Current Imac G5.

GHZ DOES matter, contrary to some opinion.

If that were the case, no one would mind the 3 GHZ miss by IBM. In the case of AMD, clock for clock and Ahtlon 64 FX runs neck and neck with 2 G5. The G5s are faster when they are clocked higher and AMD is faster when they are clocked higher. However, the Pentium M runs almost as fast at 700 MHZ less.

Clock it at 3 GHZ and the M would be an almighty jugernaught.

Architecture is king, sure. But, GHZ is what gets the king around.

That V8 engine in your Mustang cobra would not be so fast if it did not rev so high.

I don't think I need to go any further than that.

Too little, too late from IBM. They tried to play Apple and got dropped. Now they are trying to save face. Apple does not need to beg IBM and wait forever while IBM gets cozy with Apple competitors and puts Apple (longstanding and loyal customer) on hold for them (just plain bad business ethics). They can just get BETTER CPUs from someone else. Bold move. And we are all going to benefit from it.

As far as G5 vs. AMD and Intel CPUs, go to anandtech.com, who recently did a thorough comparison.

When the cry that GHZ doesn't = performance goes out, it is correct, mostly.

It just so happens right now that AMD's chips are pretty well matched to the G5's, even slightly faster, clock for clock.

But overall, GHz doesn't say much by itself. As Einstein would say "It's all reletive". The architecture determines what the clock will do, or even what it means.

Going back in time, a 1GHz G4e would perform as well as a P3 at 1.3GHz in integer, and be outfront in floats. Add Altivec, and it way way ahead in certain tasks. Move the P3 to 1.8GHz and the G4e was well behind though Altivec held up under those same tasks. Higher than that, forget it!

The G5 goes further. A 2GHZ unit would equal a 3.06GHz P4, pretty much. The problem was not in the slow ramping up of the clock though. IBM actually did at least as well as Intel did there. 2GHz to 2.7GHz is 135%. 3.06GHz to 3.8GHz is 124%. That's pretty good!

The problem is that Intel keeps increasing the caches. IBM hasn't. Until now. And only, as far as we know, only on the dual.

That's made a big difference.
post #20 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by 9secondko


Clock it at 3 GHZ and the M would be an almighty jugernaught.

it would also be running at 80C like the P4 line (which hits about 70C under load).

im not sure how much of a juggernaught it would be while its on fire or melting the plastic around it.

The M is good because it cuts its Mhz as much as it can to reduce heat and increase battery... and it is good... but it proves your whole "all hail the Mhz" attitude misplaced.

Mhz nowadays is only good to tell different models of the same chip apart, like i can assume a 2.7 P4 EE is better than a 2.2 P4 EE... try to use it to compare different chip cores and models and your gonna find yourself owning a Celeron 4.6Ghz and getting burned.
post #21 of 280
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post #22 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by curiousuburb

Yeah, I saw that. I'm wondering who will want a dual 1.4GHz chip.

The enhancements are intriguing though. They don't tell us much about it.

We can SPECULATE
post #23 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by melgross
Will Apple use these singly, or will we see dual duals as well? Hmm.

I wonder about that too. I expect they'll just go from dual chips to (a single) dual core chip, but who knows? Maybe they'll have a top end with dual dual-core chips.
post #24 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by BRussell
I wonder about that too. I expect they'll just go from dual chips to (a single) dual core chip, but who knows? Maybe they'll have a top end with dual dual-core chips.

I'm afraid that they might just stick with one as well.

But their case and mobo designs have two interfaces. It might be easy, if the cooling allows it, to have duals.

A new Express mobo would be something to wonder about.
post #25 of 280
I would buy a dualcore PM G5 but a G5 powerbook? ....mmmm No.
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post #26 of 280
Do people forget that AMD maxes out at around 2.6ghz JUST LIKE THE G5? Of course they do.

Apple needs to get low-power chips in laptops, and the G5 is definitely not the way to go. Apple knew that and that's one reason for the switch. The other reason is ghz and portability. Take a look at Doom 3 on mac for instance.
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post #27 of 280
Whoever said MHZ is everything?

The fact is that a 2 GHZ chip will handily outperform a 1.6 GHZ chip of the same architecture.

MHZ mythology aside, that is simply a fact. Get over it.

2 GHZ is greate than 1.6. Fact. Not myth. Remember, we are speaking of the SAME chip, not differing architectures.

And the differing archtitectures Intel is providing are more efficient for mobile applications.

A 1.6 G5 notebook is underpowered now. Especially for Apples flagship Powerbook which has been suffering performance deficiency for 2 years now.

And the 3 GHZ Pentium thing...

The point of that was to speak of architecture. Obviously the M would have to have a few stages deeper pipes and other changes to get to 3GHZ and it would consumer more power, but it certainly does better than a P4 at 2 GHZ. And by far. Just think for a sec.

The M architecture is "pound for pound" superior to both the P4 and Athlon 64 FX. Clock for clock, it provides more performance. That is why it is the foundation for future Intel processors. When Intel massages the chip to higher frequencies, it gets a greater performance return for the power it consumers then AMD chips, P4 or G5.

I think the 970 MP is jsut about right, but still behind AMD and when the MP is actually in a computer, AMD will be even further ahead.

IBM just plain dropped the ball here.
Again, I think Apple is moving in the right direction. It's about time Apple will have the highest performing chips all around. A premium computer should have premium parts. Intel looks to provide those parts by mid 2006. The future looks bright. It is just taking too long to get here.
post #28 of 280
Hmmm... I thought the code name was Little^2Late^2.

(I couldn't figure out how to do superscripts.)
post #29 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by macFanDave
Hmmm... I thought the code name was Little^2Late^2.

(I couldn't figure out how to do superscripts.)

a month ago it was "the G5 is supreme and Intel makes a load of crap"... now its the other way around... what has changed? the quality of processors? hmm no. Oh thats right, now steve likes Intel, so i guess i should too.
post #30 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
a month ago it was "the G5 is supreme and Intel makes a load of crap"... now its the other way around... what has changed? the quality of processors? hmm no. Oh thats right, now steve likes Intel, so i guess i should too.

No, it's not that. That's silly.

Two months ago we still thought that IBM, and maybe Freescale were going to come up with what Apple needed over the long time scale. Apparently they won't.

Jobs did say that they would still have new (presumably better) machines coming out using these chips. But supposedly IBM hasn't presented a plan that Apple could live with after that. Intel has.

Remember that Intel has been trying to get Apple to use their chips since the Apple II. They must have showed Apple somethings that IBM couldn't match in the years ahead.

I still think that the PPC architecture is better. But if it takes three years to do what x86 does in two, it just gets further behind.

It's not the basic concept, it the implementation.
post #31 of 280
So the new FX consumes 13-16W. How many Watts does the current G4 use?
And how much will the newer 90nm G4s use?

Viktor
post #32 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
a month ago it was "the G5 is supreme and Intel makes a load of crap"... now its the other way around... what has changed? the quality of processors? hmm no. Oh thats right, now steve likes Intel, so i guess i should too.

No...a month ago it was "the G5 should be at 3GHz by now...wow, IBM is like Freescal...they just don't give a damn"...6 months ago it was "the G5 should be at 3GHz by now...what's taking so long"...12 months ago it was "damn, the G5 won't be at 3GHz like it should have been...maybe we'll get something good in January"...today it's "looks like there's nothing new in the pipeline, Intel is the way to go".

Still not convinced? You the forum search tools.
post #33 of 280
The dual-core announcement is interesting, until you realize that it's not an improvement over the current lineup unless Apple decides to sell dual-dual-cores computers.

This will not help gaming or any app that isn't multithreaded one bit. What it will let you do is run single-thread apps without a hiccup. Not bad but not ground-breaking.

Although the few well threaded apps will be monsters on those computers.
post #34 of 280
Has anyone asked the golden question of when these will ship or is this just paper as Motorola was prone to do for year after agonizing year? AMD does rule the Desk,Intel the Lap in my view. IBM dragged their arse on these things the whole way and as I said where is the product? Steve must have been pissed as hell when told he needed liquid cooling last year for 2.5. By the time IBM has these things shipping Apple will be on Intel
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post #35 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by farve
So the new FX consumes 13-16W. How many Watts does the current G4 use?
And how much will the newer 90nm G4s use?

Viktor

According to this, the current G4 is 18-21 watts at about the same Ghz rating. According to this, the new G4 will have around 15 W at approximately the same Ghz. So it looks similar to this G5.
post #36 of 280
I don't know about anyone else, but I would buy a Dual 2.5Ghz Dual core PowerMac before I would ever consider buying one from intel.

man, i hate the idea apples switching to intel could have been at least AMD....sad
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post #37 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by Altivec_2.0
I don't know about anyone else, but I would buy a Dual 2.5Ghz Dual core PowerMac before I would ever consider buying one from intel.

man, i hate the idea apples switching to intel could have been at least AMD....sad

here here mate!

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-ibook 12 inch
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-future owner of a Athlon x2 4800
post #38 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by Altivec_2.0
I don't know about anyone else, but I would buy a Dual 2.5Ghz Dual core PowerMac before I would ever consider buying one from intel.

How efficient would a dual dual-core be? I'm guessing that most users get little benefit right now from duals, let alone quads. I'm sure there are some who use apps that take advantage of them, or use multiple apps simultaneously. But quads?
post #39 of 280
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
ghz does not = preformance. not by a long shot.

i dont feel a need to go any further than that.

Perhaps one of my old threads might help. I was confused back in March, but thanks to the numerous an intellectual answers, I am no more.
post #40 of 280
IBM is a specialty chip manufactuer. They wouldn't spend millions on development of a mobile G5 unless there were guranteed customers. Apple is the only consumer of G5 chips...
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