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Apple's Dual 2GHz By The Numbers 776

Posted by timothy
from the schmohkin' dept.
mallumax writes "ComputerWorld has an exciting review of Apple's Dual 2GHz machine." An excerpt: "It's clear from two weeks of testing that Apple's new Power Mac G5 dual 2-GHz machine is the fastest thing the company has ever produced. And while you can debate benchmarks until eternity, it certainly appears poised to meet or beat anything now out on the Windows side."
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Apple's Dual 2GHz By The Numbers

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  • by sakusha (441986) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:13PM (#7138622)
    Oh ferchrissakes, quit trotting out that lame old story about how macs are more expensive. They are actually CHEAPER than most of the PeeCees that they're benchmarked against. Macs now have a better price/performance ratio than PeeCees. Sure they sent out a high-end unit for review, just like all the other manufacturers. But the new G5 units are way cheaper than similarly performing Windoze CPUs from Dell, IBM, etc. Sure you can put together a piece o'crap whitebox for less, but what you won't be getting a seamlessly integrated hardware/software solution.
  • by emerrill (110518) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:14PM (#7138635)
    This is they type of thing that shouldn't make front page. Its good for the apple section but not front page. It is only a good article for apple users (which I am). But then you get all these ppl saying 'so what' which if you aren't a apple user, is true. This article doesn't give hard benchmarks, and specifically says that. So when ppl come in here and say my xxx boots quicker then that, all I have to say is, So what? This isn't meant to compare different platforms, just Macs.
  • Re:News flash! (Score:3, Informative)

    by Duckman5 (665208) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:17PM (#7138658)
    What would seem to be simple logic isn't always the case. If you will direct your attention here [zdnet.co.uk], you will discover that, depending on the task, an early Pentium 4-M could actually be outperformed by the higher end Pentium 3-M of the time.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:31PM (#7138749)
    Hm... This article is a bit misleading
    I just recently got a Sager Laptop (for any who haven't heard about them, check out PCTorque.com for some outrageous laptops)

    Here's the specs:
    P4 3ghz HT
    1 gb RAM
    Radeon 9600
    Two 60gb 7200RPM HD's in RAID 0

    I have Photoshop 7. It launched in 4 seconds off cold boot. Relaunched in 2.

    WinXP boots in 20 seconds, loading just about everything I have (Gaim, Kazaa, TV studio (it has a TV tuner), antivirus, etc). If it weren't for RAID initialization, the entire computer would boot in under 30 seconds.

    It can run a good game of BF1942, all settings up on highest, while playing a DVD on another monitor, and downloading various things off Kazaa.

    True, the laptop was about $2800, but hey, it's a LAPTOP. Try getting an apple laptop at that price that can compete with mine...
  • Mars or Bust (Score:5, Informative)

    by Graymalkin (13732) * on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:32PM (#7138757)
    What a disappointing article. His "speed" tests consisted of the ridiculously unscientific "boot time" test and application launch tests. Lopped on top of that were hand crafted Photoshop and Bryce "tests" which verify that the dual G5 kicks the crap out of the 17" G4 and 1.25GHz PowerMac. My 12" Powerbook is faster than the Lombard I bought in 1999. Yay.

    What about running real stuff like FCP's Compressor or Maya's mental ray renderer plug-in? Maybe even a After Effects render speed. Using iMovie to test anything isn't very fair to the people who would buy a G5. They're not using iMovie to work on SD video. Photoshop users aren't using a bunch of filters picked at random.
  • Re:G5 Rules (Score:4, Informative)

    by robbieduncan (87240) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:37PM (#7138789) Homepage
    Whilst Apple will not have a "new" CPU in 6 months, i.e. they will not have a G6 they will have a 3Ghz G5 by summer next year (as was announced at the introduction of the G5).

    Is this good enough for you?
  • by phillymjs (234426) <slashdot&stango,org> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:46PM (#7138845) Homepage Journal
    Half Life 2? Way to try to bolster your agrument by including a game that's not even out for Windows machines yet.

    RTCW? Yup. [amazon.com]

    C&C Generals? Yup, coming soon. [gamespot.com]

    Halo? Yup, soon. [bungie.org]

    Sim City 4? Yup. [amazon.com]

    Civ III? Yup. [amazon.com]

    In conclusion, you need to take a break from the gaming and check your facts before you post. Otherwise you come off looking like a dumb shit when someone like me comes along to easily prove you wrong.

    ~Philly
  • Re:G5 Rules (Score:2, Informative)

    by imsabbel (611519) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:50PM (#7138867)
    sorry, if you only need performance, stay in the pc area.
    With the arival of the g5, the performance of macs has finally catched up with x86. But while on the paper the chip looks like a killer, it looses to the a64. and most likely prescott,too, but thats speculation.

    Yes, the g5 has dual fpus capable of doing a mac each per cyle. But people should realize that even with 32 registers you need 2 loads and one store per MAC. Thus whenever you could really use the power of the 2 fpus, you will be so hopelessly memory-bound that it wont matter if you have 1 or 2 mac units...
  • Re:Big deal. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Mike Thole (628061) <mtholeNO@SPAMpurdue.edu> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @04:59PM (#7138929) Homepage
    RTCW? Yes, I play regularly.
    Halo? Yes, about a month behind the PC version
    Sim City 4? Yes
    Civ 3? Yes

    Granted anyone who just wants to play games for cheap has no need for a Macintosh. But you could also argue that they don't need a PC either (get a console).

    I agree that there is a lot to be said for compatability: it gotten a lot better in the past few years.
  • by wavedeform (561378) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @05:05PM (#7138972)
    Is it just me, or does Apple hardware seem outrageously expensive?

    It's not just you, it's everyone who hasn't done their homework.
    For more or less equivalent dual processor systems I get:
    Dell - $4,763.00
    Apple - $3,623.00

    Note that the Apple price does not include the $50 or less you would have to spend on a mouse to keep you happy.

  • by NickV (30252) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @05:15PM (#7139027)
    Holy shit, your "laptop" weighs 12 pounds and is 2 inches thick!!!!

    That's not a freaking laptop! It's a freaking desktop, LITERALLY! No wonder the weight/size specs are buried 3 pages deep way down in a chart here [sagernotebook.com].

    There is NO MENTION of battery life. What does it get? 15 minutes?

    Meanwhile the powerbook 15" weighs less than 6 pounds, and is an inch thick.

    Do you walk with your laptop?
  • by Malcontent (40834) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @06:26PM (#7139484)
    What is really amazing to me is that for the first time in history Apple has an enterprise story to tell. A dual G5 machine for 3K is cheap compared to similarly configured 64 bit unix machines and it comes with the backing of a large company which can sell care packs to ease the minds of CIOs. You can buy a two terrabyte xserve raid with fiber channel for 10K try and shop for something like that on the compaq/hp site and see how much you'd have to pay. Apple also happens to be selling a real server operating system to go along with that hardware. One that is proven and easy to maintain. If you join the ADC then you also get 20% off on all that hardware and software to boot.

    If apple can penetrate even 1% of the enterprise market with it's new lineup it will be a huge thing for them. They have never been able to get out of the graphic dept ghetto and now they have a real shot at getting into the server room. Just like your friends switched from linux desktops to macosx sysadmins could be replacing their aging intel based linux servers to Macs.

    Who would have guessed.
  • by seann (307009) <notaku@gmail.com> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @07:07PM (#7139769) Homepage Journal
    true story though..
    I got a 1.3ghz, running windows xp
    when I copy over the network from my pb12"
    the winxp computer slows like a dog.
    7200rpm maxtor in the xp
    5200 rpm whatever in the 12".
  • by GrayArea (69302) * <tacticalgrace.yahoo@com> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @07:38PM (#7139936) Homepage
    I don't know about you but Windows XP consistently gets sluggish when copying large amounts of data (>5GB) on my Dell Inspiron 8100. I do agree though that OS has a bigger impact than the hardware for being responsive. In fact, my iMac 17" at home running OS X is much more responsive than Windows XP is on faster hardware. Just goes to show you how much Windows sucks, but we knew that already...
  • by Pharmboy (216950) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @07:43PM (#7139968) Journal
    4. OS X is not Unix.

    Regarding its bloodline, it's more Unix than Linux is being that it is BSD based.

    Just because an OS is easy to use, doesn't mean it isn't Unix based.
  • by oingoboingo (179159) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:01PM (#7140344)
    . It's slow as fuck compared to real Intel or AMD hardware. Opteron and Itanium2 absolutely mauls the G5. Nor are there any serious professional graphics hardware available for the G5, yet, AFAIK.

    Are you talking about pro-level 3D graphics boards? 3Dlabs is currently in talks with Apple about bringing their workstation 3D cards to the Mac.
  • by tgibbs (83782) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:58PM (#7140645)
    ol... yeah... fairly took the best score generated from code that they compiled without many standard optimizations that should have been turned on.

    Or at least, that was an early claim. It ultimately turned out, however, that all the standardized optimizations that should have been turned on, were. And the ones that weren't, actually degraded performance. So it is hardly surprising that subsequent benchmarks are confirming what Apple claimed--the G5's are speed-competitive with the fastest Intels, and for some applications, notably faster.

  • by raodin (708903) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @11:22PM (#7141127)
    I'm glad you've discovered that Alienware is expensive. With a very quick bit of shopping at newegg, you can match the G5 almost exactly (1.8ghz Opteron, DVD-RW, FX5200, 1Gb PC3200, 160gb SATA, etc) for $1455. Some of these choices I question (why on earth did they put an FX5200 in the G5.. sheesh) but thats pretty much as close as you can get to matching the specs. You could get even cheaper if you went with a plain Athlon 64 3200+, and more than likely still be beating the G5s performance, considering the 200mhz advantage. areas Don't get me wrong - I own several macs, and I love them - for a long time I *only* owned macs. But price is NOT one of the where they're even competitive.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 06, 2003 @12:08AM (#7141325)
    www.yellowdoglinux.com
  • by 0x0d0a (568518) on Monday October 06, 2003 @03:49AM (#7141980) Journal
    A single 2GHz G5 easily beats a single whatever-the-fast-one-is P4, and finishes so close to a Xeon that it's essentially too close to call.

    Remember NASA? They were benchmarking a custom-written PPC app for fluid dynamics. It was hand-tuned to exploit AltiVec for floating-point vector computations. It showed that an equivalently-clocked G5 ran about 30% faster than a P4. If this is what you're going on, I'm laughing. The instructions-per-cycle on a processor means nothing -- P4s run at a significantly faster clock. The problem is that the fastest G5 available on-market runs at 2.0 Ghz, and the fastest available P4 on-market runs at 3.2 Ghz. So the G5 loses if we measure by absolute fastest possible speed. Perhaps we should use a value metric instead? The best bang-for-the-buck you can get in a G5 from Apple is their $1999 1.6Ghz model. If I pick out a new P4 desktop at Dell using the Apple price as a guide, I can get a 3.0 Ghz desktop for less, which runs about half again as fast as the Mac...*with* a monitor, which Apple doesn't include, plus a bunch of other goodies, for over a hundred dollars less.

    Wrongo, dimwit. The "overwhelming number of times" (speak English much?) it's I/O. Your computer spends more time waiting than it does working. This has been true for years and years now.

    Heh. All right, you're right -- I wasn't very clear. I was thinking of long-running tasks (which *are* generally CPU-bound), not simply browsing through your filesystem -- the latency there isn't going to kill anyone. Trust me, you don't want to change the competition to I/O latency rather than CPU speed -- OS X is an extremely heavy RAM consumer, and Apple charges a notoriously high premium on RAM.

    Is this a metaphor, or are you just an idiot? You know that Quake 3 isn't CPU bound, right?

    It certainly was on my computer when I played it. I'm sure it's possible to build a system where that's not the case, but given that the rate of graphic chipset speed increases significantly outpaces that of CPU speed increases, that's a pretty weak claim you're making if you're considering an ordinary old computer.

    You also know that nobody gives a flying fuck about Quake 3 frame rates, right? I mean, you do realize that the people who hang out in apple.slashdot.org actually do this for a living, and are more interested in Final Cut Pro or Logic performance than silly games. RIGHT?

    You do realize that the majority of people on apple.slashdot.org (or any slashdot subdomain) are under 20 and care more about games than Final Cut Pro, right?

    But, hell, since I've made assumptions to favor you all the way through here, I'll do so again. We'll go with your DV folks -- want to read their opinion [digitalvideoediting.com]? Apple's PR people are full of it WRT performance.

    That doesn't mean that the G5 systems are bad, as I pointed out above. They're a great choice if you use Macs. But claims of them stomping x86 boxes are simply not true, and folks simply repeating false claims that Apple's made are not doing anyone any favors.

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