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Dual 1Ghz G4 PowerMac With Extra Yummy 875

A huge number of readers submitted the new Dual Ghz Power Mac that Apple has announced. Includes a Geforce 4 and assorted other bells and whistles that will ring and blow for the Mac Junkie. They start at $3k and seriously make me want a Mac.
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Dual 1Ghz G4 PowerMac With Extra Yummy

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  • by toupsie ( 88295 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:49AM (#2913686) Homepage
    I just bought a dual 500 G4 PowerMac about 1 1/2 years ago for $3,000 w/ an ATI Rage Pro 128. Now I can get a dual 1Ghz PowerMac w/ a GeForce4 for $3,000. Awesome!
    • by qurob ( 543434 )
      For some reason they hold resale like a fucking BMW.

      It can be a few years old and almost cost what it did, fucking new.

      There's 604's going on eBay for $800+

      Intel hardware retains value about as well as lunch meat.
      • A few things for you to consider:

        1) Second hand Apple market is about 1/20th the size of the second hand PC market therefore supply is lower, price is higher.

        2) Everybody and their mother sells PC components but there are relatively few Apple resellers and pretty much no Apple component sellers.

        2) Prices on Ebay are incredibly inflated for everything. I seen items like digital cameras go for $400 when I could buy the same camera from Best Buy for $360 and online for $300.
      • I could sell my clean, working, maxxed out 1989 SE/30 (68k Mac) for $200 and have people fight to pay more on eBay.
    • And two weeks ago, I bought a dual 450 G4 Powermac for $1200 from some guy who was clearing off his desk in anticipation of these new guys.

      If you don't need the latest and greatest, last year's computers can be pretty cheap and extremely functional.
    • by foobar104 ( 206452 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:02PM (#2913783) Journal
      I just bought a dual 500 G4 PowerMac about 1 1/2 years ago for $3,000 w/ an ATI Rage Pro 128. Now I can get a dual 1Ghz PowerMac w/ a GeForce4 for $3,000. Awesome!

      I've heard it said many times, and I'll repeat it myself: the computer you want always costs $3,000.

      (I've heard another version that names a cost of $5,000. I guess that guy's computer is just a little more than I really want.)
      • Bingo!!! It used to be $5,000 in the 80s and early 90s. But now that # is $3,000. Every freaking CPU I want own costs $3,000.
      • Odd, the computer I wanted cost $900 - and that's exactly how much I spent to build it, including the DVD, CDRW, HD, sound, graphics card. Still competitive today, built it a year ago.

        Granted, Macs might be another matter.

    • I use it mostly for development and as a unix admin workstation. I hack around with python and objective-c and even play Retrun-to-cstl-wolfenstein on it.. I imagine that I will be using it for another 8-12 months before it gets retired as a server or nat box (Which would replace my wifes old nappy-iBook (think toilet seat)). The cool thing about the iBook is , with exception of a huge hard disk .. it does everything I need just fine for a unix box. I setup DNS , apache for serving MP3's to friends and now I can actually turn off my linux machine when I am not using it. That means a nice quiet little server that makes almost NO noise, runs unix, configured the BSD (ipfw) firewall and handles my DSL nat just fine for the rest of my machines at the house.

      I find myself upgrading my PC about once every 12-14 months, I expect to get at least 2-3 years out of my G4 (as I almost have done with my iBook)

  • Wrong Pricing (Score:3, Informative)

    by alernon ( 91859 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:49AM (#2913691) Homepage
    The high end is 3k, the low end starts at 1,600. But that's without a superdrive or the GeForce4
  • by NiftyNews ( 537829 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:51AM (#2913702) Homepage
    Darn, Mac missed a chance to start off a new line of hyper-cute with some quality components.

    Where are the crazy features? How about four little feet that walk around to amuse the user? Or a spout that collects humidity to make a wicked glass of iced tea every few hours?
    • by foobar104 ( 206452 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:04PM (#2913796) Journal
      Where are the crazy features? How about four little feet that walk around to amuse the user? Or a spout that collects humidity to make a wicked glass of iced tea every few hours?

      I just picked one up at the local Apple store. When I got it hope, it jumped out of the box, handed me a card, and ran around my neighborhood. The card said, "I have been trained to gather fruit for you."

      *munch, munch* Quite possibly the world's finest dog^H^H^Hcomputer.
  • As far as I know, the biggest NVIDIA graphics card is the GeForce3. What's this model n.4?
    • Anandtech describes this as the GeForce4 MX. NVidia has a 6 month product cycle, so seeing the weenie version of their next line of cards isn't shocking. So yes, I think it is the GF4
  • Press Release (Score:2, Informative)

    by lyonsden ( 543685 )
    Apple Press Release ml
  • by jht ( 5006 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:53AM (#2913720) Homepage Journal
    Well, it differentiates the Pro Macs from the iMac, for the short term. The price has nudged down, and the features have gotten boosted. All this is good.

    However, the chipset hasn't been updated yet (ergo no ATA100 or DDR support yet), it's the same FireWire (meaning the newer high-speed FireWire isn't ready for Prime Time yet), and the top-end speed isn't quite as fast as I had hoped/expected. I was thinking the speeds would be more like 933/1000/dual 1133 this time out.

    But all in all, it's a good short-term move assuming the G5 is available in the next couple of months. But despite the specs, it reminds me of the original "Yikes!" G4 towers, which were just Yosemite towers tweaked for a G4 to hold the line while Apple got more of the high-speed chips that their real G4 was designed for. Yikes only lasted a few months before the Sawtooth version took over.

    This is, I hope, pretty much the same thing.
    • There's a new tab on the PowerMac page, labeled Architecture []. It wasn't there before, as confirmed by the Google cache [].

      Unfortunately, the page is slanted more towards marketing than geekspeak. I couldn't see anything significantly different than the previous Quicksilver models. Could someone provide a more ArsTechnica-style overview of this little gray box labeled "System Controller" and say whether it really is any better than before?
    • The g5s are supposedly due for Macworld NY '02. These will be the sawtooth equivalent w/ DDR, 1394b and possibly USB 2.0. The current specs seem more inline with the recent Notebook upgrades/ speed bumps.
    • > However, the chipset hasn't been updated yet (ergo no ATA100 or DDR support yet)

      Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but won't the 2 MB of L3 Cache with DDR RAM make a BIG difference?
      Note: that's 2 MB of L3 cache per processor!

      My guess is that the vast majority of apps would not see any performance gain if you used DDR for main memory, all else being equal. So I think that the DDR L3 Cache was a good move.
  • by flynt ( 248848 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:54AM (#2913726)
    seriously make me want a Mac.

    My friend started saying things like this after he got a girlfriend too. We had to set up an intervention session. I propose we do the same before Taco starts posting reviews of "A Walk to Remember". :)
    • Seriously Seriously (Score:3, Interesting)

      by lukej ( 252598 )
      seriously make me want a Mac.

      I'll assume Taco doesn't have a mac from this comment...

      Why? You see these posts all the time:

      /. : Apple introduces new hardware/software X !
      Poster: Wow, now that Apple has X I really/finally want one!

      Why do people do this?

      Do you yap all morning about how you want a cup of hot coffee, and never get one? Then repeat the process tomorrow when there is a fresh pot?

      I wanted my Apple (now outdated) and so I invested my $3500k 4-5yrs ago, and it was/is awesome. Now with some of the new stuff they are coming out with I'm PLANNING on getting another... not just talking about it...

      If you think Apple's stuff is worthy, buy it.
      Just my gripe...
  • by MatriXOracle ( 33400 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:54AM (#2913729) Homepage
    The lowest priced PowerMac model is $1599 (US, no display). That's with the single-800 MHz processor.

    The *top of the line* model with the dual-GHz is $2999.

    I know that this article is specifically about the dual-GHz model, but don't give the impression that PowerMacs start at $3k. They're not all that expensive.
    • I thought he meant these new dual-GHz started at $3k, not the standard PowerMacs.
  • by dpbsmith ( 263124 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:55AM (#2913731) Homepage
    The blurb at has a section entitled "Cache Advance" that should be good for a smirk, or at least a raised eyebrow.

    It says, and I am not making this up, "In the 933MHz and dual 1GHz Power Mac G4 models, faster-than-light processor speed gets an additional boost with [now here comes the technical stuff--DPBS] advanced cache memory architecture that provides ultrafast, dedicated memory with massively enhanced throughput."

    You know, as opposed to lesser machines that have only fast, dedicated memory with enchanced throughput.

    But, wait, there's more... in this remarkable machine, "Accessing data from main memory is significantly faster than accessing data from the hard drive..."
    • by gcondon ( 45047 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:38PM (#2914017)
      How about the first line ...

      "With a quantum increase in processing power ..."

      As we all remember from our Introduction to Modern Physics courses, a "quantum" is the SMALLEST increment allowed by nature. Not really something to write home about.

      If you wish to allude to the largest physical structures, the proper adjective is "cosmic". Perhaps that sounded just a little too groovy - even for Apple.
  • Damn (Score:4, Informative)

    by Uttles ( 324447 ) <(moc.liamg) (ta) (selttu)> on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:56AM (#2913735) Homepage Journal
    In addition, the PowerPC G4 can perform four (in some cases eight) 32-bit floating-point calculations in a single cycle -- two to four times faster than processors found in PCs.

    That's fast. I just love the details behind the facts: Pentiums suck, I'll take 1 G4 over a P4 at ANY speed. Anyway, enough trolling, if you click on the processors link [] in the article, apple gives a pretty nice overview of why their dual processor G4's are really, really nice.
  • neat considering that Nvidia won't own up to it's existance on their website, or the fact that you cant buy one. So is Apple going to delay release until the Geforce 4 is an actual product and not something that is in the development stages?
  • I'm converted (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Troed ( 102527 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:58AM (#2913751) Homepage Journal
    I've had PCs since -93 (Atari STs before that) - I liked building my own computer, I liked (!) resolving problems in DOS/Windows configurations etc.

    No more. I've got friends with Macs and knowing a thing or two about operating systems I'd pick Mac OS X over Windows any day - and thus I'm now also going to convert from PC/Windows to Apple computers. I seriously hope more and more people will do this, not just those with a techie background that can see through the MS commercials and understand that for what they use their computer for, they really really should go Apple.

    Price? Umm. Let's not go there. I'm going for the iMac instead .. I'm not a gamer and can live without the GeForce 4.

  • by BoarderPhreak ( 234086 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:58AM (#2913757)
    It seems a LOT of people are simply mistaken about dual processor Macs...

    Under MacOS 9 you needed specially tuned apps to take advantage of that second CPU... Like Photoshop.

    Under MacOS X, it's no longer required, and EVERY app now benefits from that second CPU. Just like Linux or Solaris would.

    • This sounds very unlikely unless you are claiming that every app is already written to take advantage of multithreading. (apart from the trivial speedup gained by letting a few operating system functions run on the 2nd processor)

      I don't believe it. And most apps on Linux or solaris don't benifit from a 2nd processor either.
      • by jkujawa ( 56195 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:31PM (#2913962) Homepage
        Every app will benifit because, even though every non-threaded app will only run on one processor, the OS will split running apps among processors, each processor will only have half as much work to do.

        I'm not certain that Darwin is able to move a process from one processor to the other, but either way, this is a win.
        • this is misleading. most processors are not busy most of the time unless you're running numerically intensive applications that take a long time to finish. most of the delays in modern applications from i/o delays, and being multithreaded and running on an SMP system doesn't help with that without careful application design. very few people are using computers in ways that max out their processor capacity. adding an extra CPU doesn't most people.
      • The speed-up is mostly not trivial. Of course, there isn't any REAL added benefit for rendering for instance, if the app isn't multithreaded, but boy was I glad to have a dual-cpu box when I was doing rendering.
        It made sure that I could also do other stuff, which quite frankly is rather difficult in a one-cpu machine when the CPU is totally busy doing very intensive calculations.
      • by LenE ( 29922 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:37PM (#2914001) Homepage
        What he means is that the OS will balance load by divvying up the processes and threads (tasks) between the available processors. Also, if an application is threaded (in any of the supported thread architectures) then it will also automagically take advantage of the available processors.

        OS X maps processes and threads to mach tasks, which will get pre-emptively scheduled on available processors. I don't have my docs with me, but there are three different threading systems which will take advantage of multiple processors. The exception is applications running in Classic (MacOS 9 running on OS X) are stuck on the processor that Classic is running on. These apps will run threaded, but are bound by the limitations imposed by the Classic environment.

        -- Len
      • Eh? Any application that uses fork() will benefit.

        Multithreading offers finer-grained parallelism, to be sure, but I guaran-damn-tee you that Apache will run almost twice as fast (all other conditions unbounded) and handle about twice the number of simultaneous clients on a two-processor Linux or Solaris system.

        And Apache is NOT multithreaded (well, 1.x isn't, and 2.x is not what I would want to run on my production servers yet).

        Similarly, my gnarly Perl and shell scripts that do lots of simultaneous-dispatch work benefit enormously from a second processor. Again this is in the absence of other bounding conditions, ie. network pooping out, etc.

        Single-process single-thread applications probably won't benefit much. I don't know if Photoshop is multithreaded, but that's probably the only application that most high-end Mac users care about anyways ;-).
    • While I agree that many apps won't see a special boost, having that second processor, even for non-threaded apps is a benefit...

      You have one CPU dedicated solely to the app you're using, say - while the other is free for system functions, I/O and other background tasks.

      So yes, a specially tuned app would work better, but it still works better than a single CPU machine would.

  • nice (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 4im ( 181450 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @11:59AM (#2913765)

    I've been using mostly PCs and Sun workstations, but these new Macs with OS X actually make me reconsider... the pricetag is ok I guess, the OS is solid (unix-based), PPC is a clean architecture, and it could be used by my mom while I can run all the GNU goodies I want.

    Now if they have standard connectors for the display etc. (unlike some older models), it's definitely an option. That "superdrive" starts making DVDs interesting, even though 'til now I boycott them on principle (region code, CSS) - CDs are getting a bit limiting in size...

    Oh well before I get serious about replacing my current setup, the G5 will be available...

    • Re:nice (Score:2, Informative)

      by Pfhor ( 40220 )
      The video cards have VGA connectors on them, they always have. They also have the ADC connector, which is what you need to plug in an apple monitor (it is a spec that ibm made a while ago). Of course, there are boxes you can buy to plug the monitor into machines that have DVII on them also (almost all shipping geforce3 cards have them, IIRC)
    • the OS is solid (unix-based)

      Subjectively, I have to disagree. My couple of weeks of experience with OS X on my new TiBook and my new (used) dual-G4 is that while the OS is extremely slick, and the integration between something that feels like Unix on the command line and something that feels like Mac OS on the desktop, it's not rock solid. It crashes about as often as Windows does.

      However, a lot of the bugs that bother me are probably tiny and will be squashed soon. I can see more promise for OS X becoming *my* operating system than I did when I first booted up Linux 0.99.14ple and said "It's a Unix system - I know this!" like that annoying child in Jurrasic Park.
  • Here is to hopeing that the new G4 towers Provide enough product placement seperation from the imac so they can uncripple the imac's 100mhz fsb. There was no reason to take a perfectly good computer and run it slow except marketing. Now Apple has some faster models, they can give the imac some breathing room.
  • Geforce 4 MX? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Drakino ( 10965 )
    What NV number is the GeForce 4 MX? The NV17? If so, it's not that impressive, just marketing renaming a card. Apple has rarley had the top of the line graphics ship as default. And right now, it's not even an option (No 8500 or GF3Ti500)
    • Re:Geforce 4 MX? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Toraz Chryx ( 467835 )
      the NV17(-M) is NOT a Geforce 4 level product (it's the part to replace the Geforce2Go in the notebook arena)

      the Geforce 4MX should (apparently) outpace a Ti500 slightly.

      I should point out that the Mac had the Geforce 3 slightly before everyone else did. (only a couple of days, but hey, they WERE first)
    • Re:Geforce 4 MX? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by k_187 ( 61692 )
      Ok, I know that the GeForce 4 is the NV25. (which also might be what's in the xBox I'm not sure)I would guess that when the GeForce 4 comes out (Feb?). nVidia is going to do their normal thang i.e. release 3 different versions: a Geforce 4 MX (low end), Geforce 4 (midrange), and Geforce 4 Pro/Ultra (high end). Of course, Apple might just be speculating on the name, as the last round of this gradiation was the Tixxx. So who knows. And I believe for like a month back in '99 the Rage 128 was the best you could get. Apple always likes to boast that they're putting the newest video technology in their boxes, but when those boxes get around to shipping they're not so impressive anymore, at least they're trying (personally I'd rather have the 8500, but that's just me)
      • The rage 128 was never at any point in time, the best you could get. ATI can't even remember the directions to the throne room anymore let alone be the reigning king of vid cards.
  • by tjwhaynes ( 114792 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:03PM (#2913792)

    For those in a hurry, here is the editted summary ...

    A quantum ... revolutionary ... and ... Mac ... floating ... fearsomely fast ... through the ... barrier ... runs ... and crunches ... Pentium 4-based ... super models.

    Off the charts, with hot ... fluid motion and ... phenomenal ... overdrive ...snap ... three brilliant ... creative professionals.

    Faster-than-light ... ultrafast ... massively enhanced throughput ... significantly faster... even faster ... boosting ... for shooting large ... Keyboard features.

    What more do you need to know?


    Toby Haynes

  • 60 Posts... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    and no one can imagine a Beowulf Cluster of These??

    I'm disappointed.
  • Why would this be an advantage? It's clocked at 'upto' 500 MHz, but I thought it was latency that was critical in cache, so typically SRAM is used.

    It looks like they are trying to make up for have their system memory just PC-133 SDRAM, instead of DDR SDRAM...

  • Some power... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Qwerpafw ( 315600 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:07PM (#2913813) Homepage
    hrmph. As both a Mac and windows user, I can't say that I was particularly impressed at first by these new machines.

    Apple really needs to ramp up their speed--and since most people were expecting 1.2 Ghz G5 machines, this upgrade will come as a dissapointment to many.
    The new machines also use PC-133 SDRAM, which is, to say the least, sad.

    There are some nice points about the new macs, though. Apple seems to have greatly improved the interior architecture [] of the machines, enabling the PCI bus to run at 215MBps instead of 133MBps, and giving more dedicated bandwidth to hard drives et ect. The new machines also feature an AGP 4x slot, whereas (to the best of my recollection) the older PowerMacs only had AGP 2x. The GeForce 4 MX is nice, of course, though until I see some real benchmarks comparing it to Radeon 8500 and the high-end older GeForce 3 cards, I won't be impressed.

    Well, here are the total specs [] of the new machines.

    My overall impression is "Nice, but not nice enough."
    I, for one, will wait for the G5 to buy a new mac. MacWorld New York, anyone?
  • by yoink! ( 196362 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:08PM (#2913818) Homepage Journal
    At least Apple has done well in the last few months. Although I don't think I would purchase an Apple desktop computer, their Powerbooks running OSX would make me reconsider buying an x86 compatible laptop.

    Unfortanately for us, the mainstay of application toolkit consists of programs designed exclusively for Windows. On the background side, we have confugured our network services exlcusively around linux servers. Sure, maybe OSX is capable of handling such things in the near future, maybe even now; I really don't need a (reasonably) expensive Apple computer to the work an old PII can.

    On a more positive side, I have seen the grass on the other side of the fence. My first subject revolves around a family, who for several years used windows. First 95, then 98 then ME. This family had so many issues with their computer system, and no idea how to correct them that they just went out and bought an iMac because "everything worked." Now they want iPod's, iBooks, and the likes because Apple products work both for those without an inkling of knowledge as well as those who know exactly what they're doing.

    It is also my opinion that the best applications for sound recording (please read audio, not MIDI sequncing, not waveform generation ala Max/MSP,) but straight recording are available only for the PC (Samplitude 2496 and Sequoia.) As always you are free to disagree. Our studio uses such software exclusively, but a young woman asked us for advice on buying her first computer. We suggested an Athlon-based PC and an inexpensive but high quality recording card (M-Audio, Echoaudio, Terratek etc.) So she buys a Socket 423 P4, with a SoundBlaster live. Needless to say things didn't work right from the start. The system came preloaded with ME, and when we helped her switch to 2K for stabilitie's sake, Dell informed us the warranty was void without the original OS supplied with the system. On top of that this woman's knowledge of computers was non-existent (not necessarily a bad thing, just a drawback.) She is the type of demographic for which the Macintosh is perfect, and it was silly of us to recommned otherwise because we've been back there setting up the computer on many occasions.

    Apple's current efforts to provide not just an alternative but a viable one should be applauded. Though Apple is, in business models, equaly monopolistic as /.'s archnemesis (no name required,) the amount of options people have, especially in the day-to-day tasks of word processing, spreadsheets, collecting SPAM etc., are much better now that Apple is putting out products everyone wants to use.

    • The system came preloaded with ME, and when we helped her switch to 2K for stabilitie's sake, Dell informed us the warranty was void without the original OS supplied with the system.

      Hmmm, this must be that "choice" thing that Wintel people are always bragging about having.

    • It is also my opinion that the best applications for sound recording (please read audio, not MIDI sequncing, not waveform generation ala Max/MSP,) but straight recording are available only for the PC

      Um.... Pro Tools? Pretty much considered the industry standard for digital audio workstations?

      And if you want, Cubasis, Digital Performer, PEAK's apps, and a whole host of others. To be fair, I've never used Sequoia or Samplitude. But there are plenty of quite serviceable audio recording solutions for the Mac.
  • 115 Frames per second.... Must... Have...Now... Powerbook... too... sloww...
  • GForce 4 !MX! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Everybody ( 59419 )
    While semantically this is a GForce 4, technically the real GForce 4 (non-MX) is based on the NV25 core (dual vertex shaders and improved pixel shader).

    The GForce 4 MX used by Apple usese the NV17 core (one vertex shader and no pixel shader). This might still be a nice chipset, but it is not anywhere near XBox or real GForce 4 performance.
  • Seriously, you know you want one. It's the killer BSD box that you've wanted now! Just go out and get one!

    Finally, dual-GHz. This is a big psychological barrier that Apple has crossed. I couldn't be happier.

  • ...because its sexy enough on its own.
  • It says that it "supports" up to three SCSI drives, whatever that means, but it comes with Ultra ATA drive stock. For a machine of this performance potential, there is no substitute for a really good scsi drive, like the Fujitsu MAN series.

    For those that believe that IDE has caught up, I have done a comparison on a Sun Ultra 5, which comes with internal IDE drives, and an optional SCSI interface. We had the stock IDE, and a Sun labeled external SCSI drive, and the SCSI drive kicked old school at about 1.6 times faster.

    Considering Apple is marketing this to graphics/music/multimedia pros, who really use bandwidth, this box needs SCSI.
  • With the combonation of OSX and Dual 1ghz processors, Apple now is staged to show the world what it is made of. For all you nay-sayers that think Macs are only for Photoshop filters, I got news for you.

    First of all, Macs cost less. SHUT UP! They do. If you compare an iMac to an equally equiped Dell, the iMac is 400$ less than the CD-RW version of the Dell and 400$ less than the DVD-R version. Dell 8200 vs. iMac, I tried the slower versions of the PCs on their website as well, but first off the speed comparison isn't fair to the PC, but the iMac still beat it in value until you go to the 1.1ghz Celeron version, which doesn't have graphics acceloration or a hard drive larger than 40 gigs. I haven't started with the new PowerMacs, but eventually I will have a website proving that a Mac costs less than any of the competition. Feel free to verify the numbers: iMac CD-RW 1299, dell, 1663
    iMac DVD-R 1699, dell 2032

    Now, past that, Mac is currently getting all the advantages of the BSD and open source software community since the Developers Tools, which look strikingly like Visual C++, come FREE when you buy OSX. They nativly compile OS 9, OS X, and BSD/Linux applictions, I currently develop a Mud server in Project Builder, which runs on BSD and Linux.

    As far as graphics and video are concerened, it's OBVOIUS to anyone who KNOWS anything about processors that a 7 step G4 with the FPU unit used is going to be over twice as fast as a 20 step P4 using an FPU unit. Games, being an unfair arena to a superior processor which runs cooler at a lower voltage and clock speed, the Mac still matches the PC in most arenas. So speed isn't an issue.

    Resale value is also better on a Mac. And if you haven't noticed, most new Mac software runs on hardware 3 years old! The staying power of a PowerMac is obvious. There's no need to upgrade at all till processor speeds almost tripple. (I upgraded from a G3 233 to a G4 733, with no problems)

    SO, a special note to all you PC idiots. If you want to spend more money on slower computers, with hot running parts, bad operating systems, Microsofts invasion of privacy, and oh, let's not forget all those WONDERFUL games on PCs, that's fine. The best day of my life was when I left the 4000$ game system market and got a Mac. I much prefer GTA3 and FFX on PS2. Not to mention with OSX I have one click webserving, all the advantages of BSD, including the fastest SMP of any OS, and a huge open source community that is only growing with each Unix nut converted. What I don't get are you Unix/BSD/Linux junkies who don't see the joy in a Mac. It's BSD with the arguably the greatest User Interface made! There is an easy way to boot to console only ( click Other as login, ">console" as username, no password ), and everything made in Project Builder is easily portable to any other flavor of Unix or Linux, even MS-DOS for the sheep.

    So PC people, get a clue, get a life, and get a Mac. Maybe then you can appreciate style, user interface, and speed, and if not, I'm sure you guys will never run out of reasons why you don't have a Mac. You have plenty of time to think about it while you wait for your PC to finish crashing and reboot.

  • If you BTO one of the dual 1GHz machines and select an ATI Radeon 7500 (better chance of working in Linux) and don't get a 56k modem, you can get it for just $2870.
  • by Maul ( 83993 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:56PM (#2914119) Journal
    While this new system seems totally awesome, I think
    the reason why I don't have a Macintosh is because I
    can't build one.

    I wish that I could go to the store, buy the components, and put one together myself, just like
    I can with a PC. I know I can't as a result of
    Apple owning much of the hardware.

    I read this article [] and I agree with the author. It'd be nice if apple sold barebones G4s. That would make owning a Macintosh cheaper and more fun since you could easily customize by yourself.

  • by z7209 ( 305927 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @12:59PM (#2914142)
    Just for fun, try to build a comparable brand name PC for $3000.

    I tried with Dell and ended up with a $5,071 quote. I'm sure my specs can be debated, but I got:

    --Dual Xeon 2.2Ghz (Hard to tell if this is a good comparison)
    --512 MB RAM
    --80GB HD
    --ATI Fire GL2, 64MB,VGA/DVI (Best I could find on their site, besides high-end)
    --Sound Blaster Live! Value
    --Windows XP Pro

    Anyone have any idea whether the Xeon 2.2Ghz is fair to compare with at all?
    • Please tell me you're joking... The XEON is intel's server chip with vast quantites of incredibly expensive fast on board cache. Try comparing it against a dual 1600MP athlon and you'd probably get a very fair comparison, particularly given the athlon's support for decent memory. Also, as I understand it the Fire is a pretty expensive opengl card. You'd be much better off using a Radeon 8500 as a basis of comparison, particularly given that the Geforce 4 in the new mac is the slow MX version. Hopefully that lot would equate reasonably to the apple.
  • by Steve Cowan ( 525271 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @01:03PM (#2914176) Journal
    I work in audio. I want raw performance power, and I want style - the equipment I use in my studio has to impress my clients.

    The G4/DP 1 gig is a very appealing option, except:

    1. I don't need a SuperDrive. I don't want a SuperDrive. Apple won't give you a 933 or 1GHz DP machine without a SuperDrive. Sorry but I'd rather save hundreds of dollars by simply not buying one!

    2. ADC (Apple Display Connector) still really bugs me, and now they've really made it ugly. For those of you who aren't aware of Apple's hardware decision here I'm going to sum it up:
      • Apple created a proprietary connector, "ADC", for displays.
      • This connector carries power, DVI and USB along the same cable, reducing cable clutter.
      • The video card is a special one, with an extra set of pins at one end which connect to a separate power socket on the motherboard.
      • Without this power socket there is not enough juice fed to the card to power an entire display.

        THEREFORE Your system can only work with one Apple display, because only one card slot has this power connection.

      • If you wish to power an Apple Display using a system with no ADC port, you can, but you need to buy an external solution [] worth hundreds of dollars, which plugs into a video card's DVI output, a USB port, and into mains via a line-lump style power supply; and combines all these signals into an ADC connection.
      • Such adaptors require a DVI output from your video card.
      • The new video cards available on these Macs have one ADC output and one VGA output. There is absolutely no way to connect any current Apple display to that second monitor port.
      • There is no less-expensive, single-port card available for your Power Mac G4.
      • If you want a second Apple display you would have to purchase a video card with a DVI output to go into an un-accelerated PCI slot, and the special multi-hundred dollar adaptor described above to connect to the second Apple display's ADC connector.
      • If you want to use a non-Apple display on the ADC port you must buy a sub-$100 adaptor which breaks the DVI video signal out of the ADC connector for a 'standard' DVI flat display.
      • To my knowledge there is no adaptor that will give you a VGA output from the ADC port.

      What I'm getting at here is that Apple boasts that all the new Power Macs have support for dual monitors built in, but for a company who puts so much work into beautiful designs, they expect me to use two different, cosmetically mismatched displays! I don't believe that a VGA connector belongs on a flat panel due to inherent flickering issues, so that means a flat display on the ADC and a CRT on the VGA port. Ugly!

      If I want two displays that look the same, I have to enter into an imposing combination of needlessly wasted PCI slots, buying redundant cable adaptors, and spending a lot of money!

      I would love to have a DP 1 GHz with dual Apple 17" Studio displays. I really would. But the premium is too high.

      Apple should bury ADC now and issue an admission of stupidity.

      Apple did a great job of embracing standards with USB, and is arguably responsible for its success. Why they chose to suddenly abandon the DVI connector on Yosemite and original Sawtooth computers is a mytery to me. DVI was just catching on as a standard way of connecting flat panel displays. If Apple hadn't moved to ADC, we would have seen more Wintel video cards with DVI conectors on them now, because there would be more DVI-connected monitors on the market.

      Apologies for the rambling post... ADC has bothered me right from the start and now these new dual cards seem like the ultimate inconvenience.

    • Wow, this is the first time I've seen someone actually pissed that they can't run an additional very expensive monitor on their system.

      If I want two displays that look the same, I have to enter into an imposing combination of needlessly wasted PCI slots, buying redundant cable adaptors, and spending a lot of money!

      You're talking about spending lots of money on Apple's LCD displays. What's the difference?

      The new video cards available on these Macs have one ADC output and one VGA output. There is absolutely no way to connect any current Apple display to that second monitor port.

      Then connect anyone else's display to that second port. What's the problem here?

      If you want a second Apple display you would have to purchase a video card with a DVI output to go into an un-accelerated PCI slot, and the special multi-hundred dollar adaptor described above to connect to the second Apple display's ADC connector.

      You're already talking about spending a premium for the Apple display. Why are you worried about the price of hooking it up?

      You're worried about how it looks, but then you're worried about how much it cost to make it look nice. Seems like you've got too little to worry about.

    • you might want to take a look at []

      It talks about Dual Display Support... Each Geforce4MX card offers built-in dual display support in two useful modes. Extended Desktop mode allows users to work on two monitors at once for increased desktop real-estate (and increased productivity). Video mirroring is useful when presenting, so you can see the same image on a projector that you're seeing on your Apple display. Each card can drive an ADC based Apple flat panel as well as any device with a VGA connector by simply attaching both monitors.
    • Oh yeah, one more thing...

      Your ADC to VGA connector is available for for $49.

      For those who purchased Apple Computers latest G4 dual 800MHZ Power Mac G4, 867MHZ Power Mac G4, or the 733MHZ Power Mac G4, now you can use the ADC connector with a VGA analog monitor.

      Gefen supplies the custom cable as a "plug and play" solution to be used with the Twinview graphics card. The Gefen solution enables operation using two analog monitors side by side.
  • Enough! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by schvenk ( 466484 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @01:35PM (#2914401) Homepage
    Every time someone posts a new Mac product announcement, we get these two ridiculous comments:

    (1) "I could build a comparable Athlon box for way less money."

    Yes, you probably could. But Apple is a premium brand. Think Sony. You do pay extra for an integrated software-hardware package, good industrial design, 90 days free tech support, etc. You may not need or want these things but some people do. In particular, Apple's ease of use is somewhat predicated on the OS knowing exactly what hardware configuration to expect, so the user doesn't have to mess around with device drivers and kernel extensions.

    (2) "I can't believe Macs still have only a one-button mouse. What a bunch of morons. When will they get with the program?"

    Buy a Mac. Then spend $15 and buy a 2-button scroll-wheel mouse. You won't have to install anything because OS X already supports it, context menus and all. My Mac's mouse has 4 buttons and a wheel. Macs come with a 1-button mouse for good reasons, like ease of use for first-time or novice users and purity of the original mouse metaphor (point at things and click on them). There are actually users out there (including PC users) who find the second button confusing and may not know what to do with it.

    Sorry for the lengthy rant. But I just keep seeing these comments over and over again, and they miss the point.
  • by djohnsto ( 133220 ) <.dan.e.johnston. .at.> on Monday January 28, 2002 @01:40PM (#2914428) Homepage
    So when is Apple going to let developers use features that aren't available on the Rage 128? The latest OpenGL SDK from Apple only lists extensions that run on virtually ALL of their products. Doing this is nice in that developers don't have to worry about compatibility issues when using certain features. However, aside from Carmack and his DOOM demo, no one has been able to use any of the advanced features that the GF3/GF4 support!

    Explicitly, Apple's OpenGL doesn't include support for:

    • GL_NV_vertex_program
    • GL_NV_texture_shader
    • GL_NV_vertex_array_range - Yes this is in the glext.h that ships with the SDK, but there is no way to allocate video memory to use with it!
    • GL_NV_register_combiners2
    • Any AGL extensions. These would allow the use of offscreen render surfaces, anti-aliasing, allocating memory for vertex array range, etc.

    Obviously, Carmack was able to get needed programming info to make these things work, why not the rest of us? Is it that game developers now need to beg Apple to work on cutting edge technology on their machines? In my opinion this is killing any reason to use OpenGL over DX8/DX9 for future game development. Even if OpenGL itself supports advanced features that rival DX, I can't use them to build a cross-platform game. If that's true, what's the point of using OpenGL? (I actually like the DX8 programming model better.)

  • RC5 stats - (Score:3, Informative)

    by phandel ( 178702 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @03:25PM (#2915081) Journal
    750Mhz Pentium III: 1.9Mkey/sec
    1.33G AMD: 4.7Mkey/sec
    8x250Mhz SunSparc Ultra: 3.2Mkey/sec
    2x800Mhz G4: 16.5Mkey/sec
    • Re:RC5 stats - (Score:3, Informative)

      by akuma(x86) ( 224898 )
      If you look at the assembly code, you will see that the algorithm's critical path is littered with ROTL (Rotate Left) instructions. These chains of dependent instructions can also be parallelized with SIMD instructions. RC5 is not a measure of how good your processor is, it is a measure of how fast you can do ROTLs.

      I believe that altivec provides a SIMD version of ROTL which is why G4s do well.

      In contrast, x86 provides no MMX/SSE instructions for ROTL

      The Pentium-4 takes 4 clocks to do a ROTL. Yikes.

      Athlon takes a single cycle for the ROTL.
  • by Brat Food ( 9397 ) on Monday January 28, 2002 @06:25PM (#2916469) Homepage
    I see a lot of price comparisons going on here, and while that's all well and good, people are tending to glaze over a few important facts.

    1- These are workstation class machines (as far as Macs go). 2mb L3 cache per proc, 64-bit pci, 1000/100/10 NICs, superdrive, etc. Apple knows its target audience and delivers what they need.

    2- Once you're up in this price range, the price is usually moot for the buyer. The people buying these machines will drop 10k for one box (for CPU, software, monitor, etc) and don't bat an eye. I mean, do you think the average consumer would shell out 600+ bucks JUST for Photoshop if they had no viable means for a Return on Investment? That's what a Mac is to the people who buy their high end machines - a way to get work done NOW. Any downtime means they don't get their RoI, and that's why these people don't usually build their own boxen, and why they will pay a premium for a Mac.

    3- To respond to a few earlier posts.

    --Macs are the deFacto standard for professional audio, and will only become more so. Id say 80% + market share for this. I've been to many recording studios, and without fail, they have a Mac or 2 hooked up.

    --64bit pci.. Well, there are only a few kinds of cards you'll find in the average Mac. High end video, ultra160 SCSI, high end audio and special purpose accelerators (encoding, graphics effects, etc). All of these are high bandwidth tasks.

    Yes, you COULD build a PC that has faster specs for less. But you'd be missing the point. Computers are tools. If you're making money with your computer, and you're in one of the businesses where Apple products excel, you're shooting yourself in the foot to go with anything else. And I imagine with OSX, that the sector where Apple products excel will only be getting bigger.

    Here's a Pro Mac purchase for Graphic Design / ProSumer Video/ audio. Feel free to make up a comparable PC.

    Right from the apple store... I know I could save money buying HD and ram elsewhere, but I am shooting for convenience. Make sure PC has - sound card, 64bit pci, firewire, case, motherboard, dual head support, and an OS (that has all the comparable apps)

    (1 GHz PPC G4) x 2
    1.5 GB dram
    22" cinema display
    GeForce4 MX
    56k modem
    10/100/1000 NIC
    keyboard/optical mouse
    AirPort card
    Dual channel ultra160 card
    (72 GB ultra160 HD) x 2
    AppleCare plan (3yr hardware replacement)

    TOTAL............. $8,845.00

    Now, the software....this is usually full retail, not going to look for deals.(mostly right from apple store)

    DVD Studio Pro .. $999.00
    FinalCut Pro3 ..$999.00
    MS Office..$459.95
    FileMaker Pro...$249.00
    AfterEffects Pro..$1499.95

    That's enough to do most tasks......not going to look for pro audio equip or a pro video capture card (add about $3-6k for that at least)


    Time for the pro Audio and video cards

    ProTools HD 1 ...$7995.00
    Protools 192 IO ... $3995.00

    Can't think of a video card Mfg ATM, ill go with

    Media100 for ~ 4,000

    Add in some accessories

    Graphics tablet..$400
    Speakers...$600 (reference monitors)
    17" studio display...$999 (definitely need a second display)

    TOTAL....... $17,989

    I'm sure im missing a few things, and this hasn't even included the supporting equipment that I would need (cameras, sound recording equip, scanners, etc, etc.)

    So, for pretty much what you would have stuck inside the box, or hanging directly off of it, you have a grand total of..........

    GRAND TOTAL......$33709.65

    Can most people personally afford 7k+ for software alone? No. So now you see the market Macs are often used in, and the money generally tied in to them, and why people choose Macs to get work done. Fast. Efficiently. It has to be easy; it has to work, because they need to make back such a huge amount of money.
  • by 90XDoubleSide ( 522791 ) <> on Monday January 28, 2002 @08:46PM (#2917197)
    MacCentral just reported [] (OK, it was five hours ago) that there are server editions up on the online store, to be shipping next month. Here are the specs if you don't want to read the other three sentences of the article:

    • 933MHz PowerPC G4; Mac OS X Server software; 256K L2 cache and 2MB L3 cache; 256MB SDRAM memory (PC-133); 80GB 7200 rpm Ultra ATA drive; and a CD-RW drive for US$2,799.00
    • Dual 1-GHz PowerPC G4; Mac OS X Server software 256K L2 cache and 2MB L3 cache; 512MB SDRAM memory (PC-133) 80GB 7200 rpm Ultra ATA drive; and a CD-RW drive for $3,299.00
    • Dual 1-GHz PowerPC G4; Mac OS X Server software; 256K L2 cache and 2MB L3 cache; 1GB SDRAM memory (PC-133) 72GB 10000 rpm Ultra 160 SCSI drive; and a CD-RW drive for $4,549.00

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