Next Generation Intel Platform (Santa Rosa)

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014


TG Daily reports that Intel's next generation mobile platform, code-named Santa Rosa, is currently tracking for a May release.



The platform will feature many improvements over today's incarnation found in the iMac, MacBook, and MacBook Pro. While the processor will remain of the Core 2 Duo "Merom" variety and will top out at 2.4 GHz, the front side bus speed will be increased to 800 MHz.



Also, systems that use integrated graphics (MacBook, Mac Mini) will stand to see a big boost from Intel's latest graphics technology. The GMA X3000 will implement several important graphics features in hardware and support pixel and vertex shader models 3.0, whereas GMA 950 only supports pixel shader model 2.0. This improvement will no doubt be a boost for casual gamers and for Apple's desire to include even more impressive visual effects in their systems.



Lastly, Santa Rosa will feature Intel's flash caching technology, code-named Robson. The technology should bring better system performance, especially in the areas of battery life, system startup, and access of frequently used applications.





- That said, i wonder how much the pricing for the MacBook are going to be...$1399.99 starting price anyone??
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 28
    The imac needs a desktop chip set and $1300 for a laptop with shared video ram?
  • Reply 2 of 28
    i'm not very good at video cards and stuff so how much faster would this be ? than the current macbooks integrated videocard of 64mb
  • Reply 3 of 28
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Joe_the_dragon View Post


    The imac needs a desktop chip set and $1300 for a laptop with shared video ram?



    The iMac is essentially a Laptop in Desktop form.



    Sebastian
  • Reply 4 of 28
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rich-Myster View Post


    i'm not very good at video cards and stuff so how much faster would this be ? than the current macbooks integrated videocard of 64mb



    It is a faster on board video card.

    Intel should copy ati and nvidia and give it some of own ram and take the rest from system ram like that low end ati and nvidia cards.
  • Reply 5 of 28
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Nothing wrong with Santa Rosa, but I don't think it is worth waiting for like many are. Most of the improvements look like they'll be modest. Time will tell but I'm glad I got my MBP when it got Merom.
  • Reply 6 of 28
    Nothing wrong with Santa Rosa or Penryn or whatever. But I presently have a 1.42 GHz G4 Mac mini and my rule of thumb is to upgrade only to double my GHz -- Moore's Law (18 months or so). So despite the bells and whistles... I wait and wait for a 3.0 GHz C?D mini.
  • Reply 7 of 28
    philbyphilby Posts: 124member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jiggy05 View Post


    Nothing wrong with Santa Rosa or Penryn or whatever. But I presently have a 1.42 GHz G4 Mac mini and my rule of thumb is to upgrade only to double my GHz -- Moore's Law (18 months or so). So despite the bells and whistles... I wait and wait for a 3.0 GHz C?D mini.



    The Mini already has >3 Ghz: 2 * 1.83 Ghz == 3.66 Ghz. If you're waiting for a 3+ Ghz Core ? CPU, I think you may be in for a lo-o-ong wait... currently, CPU technology seems to be moving away from high GHz towards more cores, AFAIK.
  • Reply 8 of 28
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Nothing wrong with Santa Rosa, but I don't think it is worth waiting for like many are. Most of the improvements look like they'll be modest. Time will tell but I'm glad I got my MBP when it got Merom.



    I disagree, WiMax is actually worth waiting for, and Robson as well. The rest is just extra fluff.



    Sebastian
  • Reply 9 of 28
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Slewis View Post


    I disagree, WiMax is actually worth waiting for, and Robson as well. The rest is just extra fluff.



    Sebastian



    Well WiMax may be great but I think we're a few years away from widespread adoption of this. Robson may be nice, we'll just have to see. I think the biggest improvement will be the better integrated graphics. I think that may greatly benefit the Macs that uses intel IG.
  • Reply 10 of 28
    kukitokukito Posts: 113member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by philby View Post


    The Mini already has >3 Ghz: 2 * 1.83 Ghz == 3.66 Ghz. If you're waiting for a 3+ Ghz Core ? CPU, I think you may be in for a lo-o-ong wait... currently, CPU technology seems to be moving away from high GHz towards more cores, AFAIK.



    There will soon be a 2.6 GHz Merom, the X7800. That will probably go in the MBP and/or high-end iMacs. Penryn will most probably go above 3 GHz since it will consume much less power with Intel's new high-K and metal gates 45nm process. Penryn has been already pulled in to 2H 07, although there's speculation that it will be used first for the Xeons to counter AMD's new K10 Barcelona chip. Those Xeons will go into the Mac Pro.



    Edit: last sentence. The Mac Pro might be refreshed first with Clovertowns.
  • Reply 11 of 28
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Now a 2.6 ghz Merom might be worth waiting for. I just don't see the 2.4 ghz Santa Rosa being even 10% faster than the 2.3 ghz Merom one can get now.
  • Reply 12 of 28
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Now a 2.6 ghz Merom might be worth waiting for. I just don't see the 2.4 ghz Santa Rosa being even 10% faster than the 2.3 ghz Merom one can get now.



    Yeah. Even 1.6 GHz is respectable with Merom. Santa Rosa isn't a high-end platform though. The reason many people want it is the faster, more capable IGP (with DirectX 10 support for Windows). Intel also open sourced the OpenGL drivers for the X3000 and I imagine Apple might benefit from that as well for its own drivers.
  • Reply 13 of 28
    slewisslewis Posts: 2,080member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Well WiMax may be great but I think we're a few years away from widespread adoption of this. Robson may be nice, we'll just have to see. I think the biggest improvement will be the better integrated graphics. I think that may greatly benefit the Macs that uses intel IG.



    Well WiMax in Laptops as an industry standard is the first step towards Widespread adoption of it, and that in itself is quite important, and within a year WiMax will be spreading rapidly. This is the year the infrastructure takes off and makes it one of the most important technologies in a laptop by 2008.



    Which means by the time I'm shopping for a new Laptop, WiMax will be widespread.



    Sebastian
  • Reply 14 of 28
    mjteixmjteix Posts: 563member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Now a 2.6 ghz Merom might be worth waiting for. I just don't see the 2.4 ghz Santa Rosa being even 10% faster than the 2.3 ghz Merom one can get now.



    Don't forget that Santa Rosa will have a 800 FSB vs the current 667 FSB on Napa. This may lead to an overall faster system than just the bump in clock. High-end models may also receive some Robson cache... So you may get more than you think when iMacs and MacBook Pros get Santa Rosa. I believe they will be released at the WWDC, given that Intel said the chips would be shipping in May.



    For Penryn, the mobile versions are not expected until early 2008, but they will feature a nice increase in speed (+3.0GHz) and a faster FSB up to 1066, so we are on for another major speedbump for early 2008. As far as I know the first Penryn chips will be Xeons (quad-cores), early Q4 2007, then desktop chips (quad and dual cores), late Q4 2007.
  • Reply 15 of 28
    rolorolo Posts: 686member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Now a 2.6 ghz Merom might be worth waiting for. I just don't see the 2.4 ghz Santa Rosa being even 10% faster than the 2.3 ghz Merom one can get now.



    While a 2.4 GHz C2D is only 3% faster than a 2.33, the 800 MHz FSB of Santa Rosa is 20% faster than the 667 MHz of the current MBP. Add to that the benefits of Robson and you have a new MBP that's significantly faster overall with much improved battery life.



    The 2.6 GHz chip is 8.3% faster than the 2.4 GHz chip but costs a lot more. Maybe the 2.4 will be Apple's low end MBP and the 2.6 will be the high end.
  • Reply 16 of 28
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rolo View Post


    While a 2.4 GHz C2D is only 3% faster than a 2.33, the 800 MHz FSB of Santa Rosa is 20% faster than the 667 MHz of the current MBP. Add to that the benefits of Robson and you have a new MBP that's significantly faster overall with much improved battery life.



    The 2.6 GHz chip is 8.3% faster than the 2.4 GHz chip but costs a lot more. Maybe the 2.4 will be Apple's low end MBP and the 2.6 will be the high end.



    I hear what you're saying Rolo, but I think that the '20% faster' will only be for a few benchmarks where access to cache is critical. For most tests I doubt you'll see much difference. BTW I don't think that Santa Rosa will be bad, I just don't see a big advantage of waiting for new machines that have the Santa Rosa platform. The only exception may be Macs that use Intel IG as the x3000 may be a big improvement over GMA 950. There are lots of folks waiting for Santa Rosa before they get a MBP. I wouldn't wait I'd get one now.
  • Reply 17 of 28
    emig647emig647 Posts: 2,404member
    Backtomac,



    I am the guiltiest party when it comes to waiting for new hardware. I've had the money but have been holding out for so long (i'm on a 1.25ghz 15" pb). After reading the specs on Santa Rosa, I'm confidently buying a 2.33 MBP this week without being scared of it being totally obsolete during the next rev. The only way I could possibly get screwed, IMO, is if apple releases the next MBP with a much nicer graphics card. I highly doubt they will release a new graphics card. Perhaps more vram, but that is about it. I don't see much advantage to waiting it out any more. Also, I'm not the biggest fan of flash memory. It seems every flash device I have had, has ended up in the trash. I'll wait a few and see how it turns out.
  • Reply 18 of 28
    rolorolo Posts: 686member
    I, too, have a 1.25GHz 15" PB, bought in September, 2003, but I'm holding out for the Santa Rosa MBP. Here are what I hope and expect could be the differences between the current MBP and the SR version:



    Current top 15" MBP:

    2.33GHz C2D

    667MHz FSB

    Mobility Radeon X1600

    6x SuperDrive

    Fluorescent backlit display



    SR top 15" MBP:

    2.6GHz C2D

    800MHz FSB

    Mobility Radeon X1800

    8x SuperDrive

    1GB flash (Robson)

    LED backlit display



    X1600:

    157 million transistors on 90nm fabrication process

    Twelve pixel shader processors

    Five vertex shader processors

    128-bit 4-channel DDR/DDR2/GDDR3/GDDR4 memory interface

    Native PCI Express x16 bus interface

    Dynamic Voltage Control



    X1800:

    312 million transistors using 90nm fabrication process

    Up to 16 pixel shader processors

    Eight vertex shader processors

    256-bit 8-channel DDR1/DDR2/GDDR3 memory interface

    Native PCI Express® x16 bus interface

    PowerPlay? 6.0 power management technology

    Avivo? Video and Display architecture



    Robson should help to improve battery life and make the MBP somewhat snappier in some respects. The 20% faster FSB should be welcome. The CPU is only 11.6% faster per core but for MP-aware apps, it might as well be 23% faster. The memory would be a bit faster, too.



    LED backlighing will make for a much brighter display with richer color and will save on battery life. Add that to the benefits of Robson and there should be some overall significant improvement in battery life.



    I sure hope I'm right about the X1800 and the 8x SuperDrive. We won't know for another 3 months. Anyway, I think these specs are worth waiting for.
  • Reply 19 of 28
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rolo View Post


    I, too, have a 1.25GHz 15" PB, bought in September, 2003, but I'm holding out for the Santa Rosa MBP. Here are what I hope and expect could be the differences between the current MBP and the SR version:



    Current top 15" MBP:

    2.33GHz C2D

    667MHz FSB

    Mobility Radeon X1600

    6x SuperDrive

    Fluorescent backlit display



    SR top 15" MBP:

    2.6GHz C2D

    800MHz FSB

    Mobility Radeon X1800

    8x SuperDrive

    1GB flash (Robson)

    LED backlit display



    X1600:

    157 million transistors on 90nm fabrication process

    Twelve pixel shader processors

    Five vertex shader processors

    128-bit 4-channel DDR/DDR2/GDDR3/GDDR4 memory interface

    Native PCI Express x16 bus interface

    Dynamic Voltage Control



    X1800:

    312 million transistors using 90nm fabrication process

    Up to 16 pixel shader processors

    Eight vertex shader processors

    256-bit 8-channel DDR1/DDR2/GDDR3 memory interface

    Native PCI Express® x16 bus interface

    PowerPlay? 6.0 power management technology

    Avivo? Video and Display architecture



    Robson should help to improve battery life and make the MBP somewhat snappier in some respects. The 20% faster FSB should be welcome. The CPU is only 11.6% faster per core but for MP-aware apps, it might as well be 23% faster. The memory would be a bit faster, too.



    LED backlighing will make for a much brighter display with richer color and will save on battery life. Add that to the benefits of Robson and there should be some overall significant improvement in battery life.



    I sure hope I'm right about the X1800 and the 8x SuperDrive. We won't know for another 3 months. Anyway, I think these specs are worth waiting for.





    If SR tops out at 2.6 ghz then the wait may be worth it. I thought SR was topping out at 2.4 ghz. As far as the faster FSB, I think that's really overestimated. Intel recently released 4000 series Conroe chips. These are 'budget' chips in the core 2 lineage with 2 mb of L2 cache and an 800 mhz FSB vs. 1000mhz. Clock for clock the original Conroes are only 4% faster in overall performance using the SYSmark benchmark in a recent test at Anand. I would expect similar results with SR in comparisson to the original merom chips. Nothing wrong with 4-5% improvement but I just don't see it as something worth holding out for if you're needing a Mac now. LED backlighting could be a great feature worth the wait but we don't know for sure that the feature will make into the next MB/MBP.



    As an owner of a Core 2 MBP, I can say from personal experience that I think you'll be happy. Especially if you're coming from a g4 PB. You'll be impressed with the performance.



    Link:http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets...spx?i=2903&p=3
  • Reply 20 of 28
    philbyphilby Posts: 124member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by emig647 View Post


    The only way I could possibly get screwed, IMO, is if apple releases the next MBP with a much nicer graphics card.



    What if the next MBP had built-in BluRay drive and HDMI-compatible output?
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