Design of Future Power Macs...

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
I thought about Apple saying that they may introduce the 'Cube' at a future point in time.



How about a bigger, more 'NeXt' style cube with more expandibility and 'rack mount'-able options?



With a pending chip and OS capable of more than just two processors, it would be nice to have a machine that can do 4 and 8 processors.



We all know the cube was overpriced. But if they made it bigger and put the expandability in there with Raycer and G5 chips etc...



...wouldn't this be great for high end artisans?



They already have a winning design aesthetic. If they just made it bigger and brought out the internal component big guns I'm sure they'd have a winner.



I always wanted a cube. A bigger Powerful Power Mac cube and I'd be in heaven.



Anybody else think apple have something up their sleaves with the next Power Mac design?



Lemon Bon BOn :cool:

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    marcukmarcuk Posts: 4,442member
    I almost bought the Cube, but opted for a G4 Tower instead, mainly because I wanted 2 monitors at the time. The performance at the time was roughly equivalent to the tower, apart from expandability, I also saw the Cube as a risky investment for future support of graphics, Cpu upgrades, so opted for the tower (not that its been any better :mad



    However with the advent of dual head graphics cards, I could now get away with the cube.



    what I think Apple should do, is morph the towers and the cubes. The low end could be a box similar size to the cube, but in a tower form, but it must have same upgrade, performance as what it replaces, and have 1 PCI/1 AGP slot. next up the line comes a stretched version with 3 PCI/AGP and the high end with 5PCI/AGP slots. A kind of Cube/Minitower/Tower configuration all sporting the same overall design configuration, but getting stretched to accomodate extra PCI slots.
  • Reply 2 of 15
    gamblorgamblor Posts: 446member
    I think Apple should re-introduce the Cube just as it was, but with updated guts. The Cube had a 100MHz bus, right? Pump it up to 133. Throw in 733, 867, and 933 MHz G4s for Fast, Faster, and Fastest. Put a combo drive on the low end, and superdrive in the top two machines. Throw in GeForce 4MX graphics, with an option for the GF4Ti4600 or Radeon 8500. Put in 1/2 GB RAM standard across the line.



    And here's the key to making it a success: Price the damn thing in accordance with what the market will bear for such a machine-- $1099, $1299, and $1599. That way they'd avoid the root cause of the Cube's crashing and burning the first time around-- they were priced to high to begin with, and the price didn't drop far enough and fast enough over the machine's lifetime.



    Sadly, I don't think we'll ever see the Cube again. There's too much of a stigma attached to it. The departure of the Cube does leave a gapping hole in Apple's line up though-- and they've got to eventually fill it with something.



    [Edit: Oh, and leave the damn towers alone. There's nothing wrong with them. ]



    [ 04-06-2002: Message edited by: Gamblor ]</p>
  • Reply 3 of 15
    That's a helluva price discount against the towers for a slightly slower processor.



    In more plain words, "Dream On".



    Jet
  • Reply 4 of 15
    lemon bon bonlemon bon bon Posts: 2,383member
    Good idea re: a 'morphing' cube design as features and power and expandability are 'more so' up the line...



    The cube (IMHO) had better looks than the tower.



    If there was a bookcase morphogenic cross with a bigger cube design...



    I'd buy in a 2nd.



    The design would be great for renderfarms...clusters...and think about the 'cool' factor...no fridges to keep 'em running cool.



    'Bigger Cube' would do me fine. Put the 'brick' and more room to expand inside.



    I wonder how much longer the tower design can hold on. When you look at the design 'oomph' the rest of the Apple line has had from the ibook to imac to ipod...



    :cool:



    Lemon Bon Bon
  • Reply 5 of 15
    My ultimate cube would run the same bus, RAM and similar speed to the PM's but with 1 AGP slot and 1 PIC slot. Also must have a DVD burner. Wouldn't mind if it was an inch bigger in all axis either. If this was available in february I wouldn't be typing this on a new iMac. Would be great setup for about $1700 or 1800, but then again keep dreaming...
  • Reply 6 of 15
    [quote]Originally posted by Lemon Bon Bon:

    <strong>Good idea re: a 'morphing' cube design

    Lemon Bon Bon</strong><hr></blockquote>



    But will it star in a cool Schwartzenegger movie?
  • Reply 7 of 15
    [quote] And here's the key to making it a success: Price the damn thing in accordance with what the market will bear for such a machine-- $1099, $1299, and $1599. That way they'd avoid the root cause of the Cube's crashing and burning the first time around-- they were priced to high to begin with, and the price didn't drop far enough and fast enough over the machine's lifetime.

    <hr></blockquote>



    Good idea. But I would go even farther, and price it at:



    $999

    $1199

    $1499



    All G4s, all single processor. And wait until the Powermac G5s are out, so that the Cube has the "low end processor".



    People will still pay more for the towers because the cube lacks expandability. And they will still buy the iMacs, because they use less desk space and come with a display. (but of course the iMacs also have to come down in price a bit for this cube pricing scheme to work).



    One more thing: Make the cube taller, so that it can hold a full sized video card. The cube should be able to accept any and all mac video cards.



    And another thing: Do NOT offer the cube with a Superdrive. This will help differntiate it from the imac and powermacs, and enforce it's place as a consumer Mac for people on a budget, or those who already have a monitor from a Wintel setup or old mac system, and they want to try out OS X.



    Apple needs an entry level Mac at around $999 for the Wintel crowd, and the cube would work perfectly for it.



    I would buy a G4 cube if it were as described above. I already own a monitor, so I don't need an iMac. And although I would like a G5, I'd settle for a G4 if the price was right. The G4 is still an awesome CPU for the right price.



    Apple needs to be sure to market the cube as a VALUE Mac, and the value comes from it not having any expandability options. That's why it costs less.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    gamblorgamblor Posts: 446member
    [quote] That's a helluva price discount against the towers for a slightly slower processor. <hr></blockquote>



    It also doesn't have PCI slots, and more limited video expansion capabilities (no full length cards). How much is that worth?



    [quote] In more plain words, "Dream On". <hr></blockquote>



    In two words: "Bite me."



    [quote] And another thing: Do NOT offer the cube with a Superdrive. This will help differntiate it from the imac and powermacs, and enforce it's place as a consumer Mac for people on a budget, or those who already have a monitor from a Wintel setup or old mac system, and they want to try out OS X. <hr></blockquote>



    I disagree with this-- there's no reason why the Cube couldn't be aimed at professionals who don't need PCI slots but do need a display larger than 15", as well as the low end.
  • Reply 9 of 15
    lemon bon bonlemon bon bon Posts: 2,383member
    Apple needs a low end Mac.



    For education. For nerd heads. For PC wanna try 'X' heads. For beginner computer heads. For cheap office machine. For mac gamer heads (if there is such a thing... )



    An 'icube' or healess Mac 'Brick' would be the way to go.



    You can take two routes. Make it bigger alround and go high end with G5 cred' components replacing the style on the Powermacs ie becoming the 'New Powermac'. But obviously the 'Power Cube' would have to be bigger for the common standard/top components and expandbilility.



    The original cube was 'too clever' for its own good in this respect. Nobody wants to pay over the odds for a machine that has little expandibility.



    The other route is to go 'low end'.



    Bang in cheap G3s or 'cache' less G4s and a Geforce 2mx and sell for £799 or less. Replacing the 'retro'/old imac. People can choose the apple lcd display of their choice. Or like JD says, people who already have a monitor (moi self...) can take the brick without worrying about an apple Lcd display.



    Would make it a great gamers or office machine.



    Heck, the current Office X promo and an icube £799 machine would be a good office machine.



    Make it bigger and you give people standard components with more expandibility options.



    Give a tv out option for high definition tv/normal tv.



    I wanted the cube. But it was under specced and over priced as we all know.



    'The cube may return' at some point in the future.



    Will it be low or high end...?



    Will it ever reappear.



    I hope so. But not in its original ill considered manner.



    Lemon Bon Bon
  • Reply 10 of 15
    kedakeda Posts: 722member
    I dont think we will see the Cube again...actually we already do, but it is a dome w/ a monitor stuck to it.



    The Cube was beautiful, but its biggest accomplishment was to show the 'new' Apple. Apple did the right thing by killing the cube when it did. It was not a successful product and I think the 'old' Apple would have kept trying to make it one.



    I cant see any scenario where the Cube2 would not compete w/the iMac.
  • Reply 11 of 15
    imacfpimacfp Posts: 750member
    Once LCD screens drop in price and the iMac prices lower to about $1,000 and the highend gets a 17" LCD and faster bus, which will all happen, the Cube won't have a place. Apple will never price what they think of as a "pro" computer any lower than $1,500. To Apple slots are all "pro" features since Apple does not care about gamers. If only Apple could find a way to give access to the iMacs video card the last remaing problem would be solved.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    nebagakidnebagakid Posts: 2,692member
    Can we get a Picture? Picture? Picture? :confused: <img src="graemlins/bugeye.gif" border="0" alt="[Skeptical]" />
  • Reply 13 of 15
    programmerprogrammer Posts: 3,409member
    The nerd/geek crowd (of which I'm probably a member) wouldn't want a Cube. They want a cheap, expandable, utilitarian machine that they can play with and upgrade. Probably one that you can only buy online or through specialty suppliers (i.e. Fry's Electronics). If its a standard PC form factor board, so much the better. If you have to buy it disassembled, great. Its gotta be cheap, and there have to be options.



    The main problem with this from Apple's point of view is that the margins are razor thin and producing these machines would take production away from the higher margin boutique machines. This was about the only thing I was hoping to get out of the whole cloning business, but it never happened.



    Ah well, I can always dream...
  • Reply 14 of 15
    marcukmarcuk Posts: 4,442member
    Thinking a bit more about my tower/cube morph, what I'd really like to see, is 3 sizes of 'hybrid' cubish/mini/full size tower which all take the same hardware configuration, sans the PCI expandability. Then there would be 3-4 processor options like &lt;sarcasm&gt; slowest/slower/dual just slow &lt;/end sarcasm&gt; that you could put in any size box. Along with GPU/ Ram BTO etc you could have a really great system for everyone.



    I'd want the fastest 'Dual just slow' with a GF4Ti in the smallest size box, but with some potential for expandability whereas others could opt for the 'slowest' in the largest box for their PCI cards.
  • Reply 15 of 15
    jobesjobes Posts: 106member
    i don't like to repeat myself verbatim, so check out my recent screed on the unlikelyhood of the cube appearing <a href="http://forums.appleinsider.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=1&t=001506"; target="_blank">in this thread.</a>



    but a coupla other points to consider from the above comments (in no particular order )



    I don't know of any serious gamers who will buy a machine they cannot upgrade radically. Thats one of the main reasons PCs rule the gaming roost: new mobo, new CPU, new GPU, no probs ...



    and please remember something ... we are talking about Apple here folks ... they have spent years developing a well defined product matrix after losing the way with multiple nondescript boxes in the mid 90s. Their main deviation from this defined matrix was the Cube. It bombed. I don't think they will go down that route again (although I still don't understand why they released the 14.1" iBook so mebbe they do like to blur the boundaries a bit .. hehe)



    remember also that apple has 3-5% market share, that's not changing fast no matter how good the s/w & h/w is, and they already spend more on R&D than most PC manufacturers. Apple will not create sub-niches for their products ... not enough people will buy 'em to make it a viable economic option, especially in this economic climate. instaed of playing fantasies of what strange new hybrid apple machine you can think up, try and think of machine which'll really expand APPL market share and make some good margins ... because I am sure that's what the guys at Cupertino are doing. And no I'm not sure what that'll be, but I also know B$ ideas when i see them and like most people find it easier to be a logical naysayer rather than thinking out of the box ... I leave that to Jonathan Ive ....



    I don't know why you would want to have a larger cube ... that's just a squarer version of a powermac, and frankly i think the el capitan/quicksilver case is an excellent balance between form and function. Sure it hasn't changed much in 3 and a bit years, but it works well ...



    sure the case design is important but if i want to beat off over something it isn't the design of my machine ... my g4 lives under my desk because it is there to do work, not wow visitors



    apple keep on the old CRT iMac predominantly for the education and cheapo granny intro market ... both of which like the 'all-in-one' design. Reintroducing a cheap cube to g with some 3rd party moniotr dilutes apple's strong industrial design and branding, and negates much of the above market's requirements



    finally programmer, i love your self-effacing comment about 'probably' being a nerd/geek having read and been educated by most of your posts over the last few months I would say your are definitely feet-first in that camp ... and that's a compliment btw ....
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