Why go Intel?

Veljo

Mac Enthusiast
Well I for one support the switch, I think it will be good for Apple and Intel. Apple move forward with their technology all the time, unlike Microsoft. This move will be one of the greatest steps Apple has even taken, despite the criticism.

I for one bought my iMac because I knew the operating system was excellent...and not a day goes by that I don't regret it.

However, there's one thing that interests me. I compressed the exact same DV file with H.264, using QuickTime 7.0.3 at the exact same bitrate and everything on my iMac G4 800MHz and Pentium 4 3.4GHz PC to test the difference in speed. Here's what I came up with:

iMac G4 800MHz, 100MHz bus, 768MB RAM (133MHz) — 18 minutes
Pentium 4 3.4GHz, 800MHz bus, 512MB RAM (400MHz) — 8 minutes

I'm baffled as to why my Mac, with such poor spec sin comparison, was only about twice as slow as my PC. I would've thought the PC would have blasted it away but that wasn't the case at all.
 

nixgeek

Mac of the SubGenius! :-)
Remember that that PC is running it on Windows (and to be honest, iTunes and QuickTime on Windows is not that great compared to iTunes and QuickTime on the Mac). When the Intel Macs come out, perform the same test and see what happens. Both should be running the same OS version when you do it, as well as the same version of QuickTime. That scenario will give you a better idea of what difference there is between the two CPU platforms.
 
Carlo said:
Not many people buy a mac because it has a PPC cpu in it. Intel make fantastic CPU's these days, they are the market leader for a good reason (unlike microsoft).

They will offer cheaper and faster mac portables.

IN steve we trust

HAHA LMFAO
If you think Intel makes fantastic CPUs, you haven't used or heard of A64. You must be joking if you have. Intel sucks compared to AMD. They are supposedly 2 years behind AMD in technology. They are way overpriced compared to AMD's. They just suck with 3d performance and most other things the A64 is better than. Still, Intel is better than IBM's PPC, so macs will get a benefit.

Intel only has the large share of the market not because it's chips are faster, but only because of it's sheer size and pressure towards manufacturers and whole salers. IT also has numerous relationships with large companies and gives deals that AMD can't afford. Still AMD > Intel.
 

nixgeek

Mac of the SubGenius! :-)
SuperTyphoon said:
HAHA LMFAO
If you think Intel makes fantastic CPUs, you haven't used or heard of A64. You must be joking if you have. Intel sucks compared to AMD. They are supposedly 2 years behind AMD in technology. They are way overpriced compared to AMD's. They just suck with 3d performance and most other things the A64 is better than. Still, Intel is better than IBM's PPC, so macs will get a benefit.

Intel only has the large share of the market not because it's chips are faster, but only because of it's sheer size and pressure towards manufacturers and whole salers. IT also has numerous relationships with large companies and gives deals that AMD can't afford. Still AMD > Intel.
While I do agree with you about the Athlon 64, consider that they are still WAY overpriced compared to some Intel P4 and P-D CPUs I have seen listed on Anandtech. Also consider that Intel is making a shift to more performance with less power. Intel's Pentium-M, while not as fast as an Athlon 64, is great when you consider the amount of power it requires. And it's only about to get better with Yonah and subsequent releases. AMD has to confront this head on, otherwise they will find themselves playing catch up again. They should not underestimate Intel.

That being said, AMD's Opteron trumps anything Intel has to offer at the moment, and the AMD64 chips are smacking Intel when it comes to sheer performance in games (this is also assisted by the plethora of video cards, so I'm being very conservative in this statement). Note that I'm only talking about single core chips, as a lot of the games still don't support multithreading necessary for the apps to run on a dual core AMD64.

As for the PPC, you know well enough my stance on the PPC platform. I personally think that the PPC has received the short-end of the stick when it comes to support even from it's own creators. However, this far from makes the PPC platform subpar to the x86 CPUs out there. I'm sure others will back me up on this. PPC has it's place, and we see it in the embedded and gaming arena. As for desktop, it can do great things as we've witnessed with Apple, but if the creators of said technology aren't going to put their money where their mouth is in terms of support and marketing, there's not much you can do other than tip your hat in remorse. :(
 

nixgeek

Mac of the SubGenius! :-)
SuperTyphoon said:
HAHA LMFAO
If you think Intel makes fantastic CPUs, you haven't used or heard of A64. You must be joking if you have. Intel sucks compared to AMD. They are supposedly 2 years behind AMD in technology. They are way overpriced compared to AMD's. They just suck with 3d performance and most other things the A64 is better than. Still, Intel is better than IBM's PPC, so macs will get a benefit.

Intel only has the large share of the market not because it's chips are faster, but only because of it's sheer size and pressure towards manufacturers and whole salers. IT also has numerous relationships with large companies and gives deals that AMD can't afford. Still AMD > Intel.
While I do agree with you about the Athlon 64, consider that they are still WAY overpriced compared to some Intel P4 and P-D CPUs I have seen listed on Anandtech. Also consider that Intel is making a shift to more performance with less power. Intel's Pentium-M, while not as fast as an Athlon 64, is great when you consider the amount of power it requires. And it's only about to get better with Yonah and subsequent releases. AMD has to confront this head on, otherwise they will find themselves playing catch up again. They should not underestimate Intel.

That being said, AMD's Opteron trumps anything Intel has to offer at the moment, and the AMD64 chips are smacking Intel when it comes to sheer performance in games (this is also assisted by the plethora of video cards, so I'm being very conservative in this statement). Note that I'm only talking about single core chips, as a lot of the games still don't support multithreading necessary for the apps to run on a dual core AMD64.

As for the PPC, you know well enough my stance on the PPC platform. I personally think that the PPC has received the short-end of the stick when it comes to support even from it's own creators. However, this far from makes the PPC platform subpar to the x86 CPUs out there. I'm sure others will back me up on this. PPC has it's place, and we see it in the embedded and gaming arena. As for desktop, it can do great things as we've witnessed with Apple, but if the creators of said technology aren't going to put their money where their mouth is in terms of support and marketing, there's not much you can do other than tip your hat in remorse. :(
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
idhk said:
Hey guys,
Sorry to bother with this question, but why Apple wants to go Intel when the OSX would still be locked to the Apple hardware. What would be the benefit? I know that the current PPC is very very good CPU.
Thanks
The reasons about this have been talked to death back when the step was announced in June 2005.

1) intel has a good roadmap for performance/watt ratio (according to Steve Jobs, that's the number one reason).
2) intel makes a _lot_ of processors. scale matters.
3) ibm and freescale (ex Motorola) had to be whipped all the time to make some progress with the PowerPC processors. seems like ibm couldn't keep up with Steve Jobs' pace, hence the change.

Also, it's not about _current_ PPC chips. Such a step has to be well planned and is about the roadmaps of IBM, FreeScale, intel, AMD and possibly others. Apple is probably doing good in choosing a manufacturer that has a proven record of being successful (even if intel's products haven't been 'best' at all times...). And since AMD's processors are compatible with what intel has to offer, nothing stands in the way of Apple later on also using AMD processors, so that discussion is really not necessary at this point.

Also, Apple makes the whole package. To me, it's important that the different parts in my notebooks play well together. Does it really matter if my current PB's processor runs at 1.33 GHz or 1.42? I think not. Does it matter that the whole machine performs well? Oh, yes, it does. intel offers more than just processors (chipsets, other stuff) and that might have played a role, too.
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
Anandtech has tested a 2.0 GHz Yonah (dual core mobile processor!) against some AMD and intel stuff. To quote from TheRegister's interpretation:

--- "At 2.0GHz, Yonah is basically equal to, if not slightly slower than an Athlon 64 X2 running at the same clock speed in virtually all of the tests we ran," the site reports. "The important distinction here is that Intel is able to achieve that level of performance, without an on-die memory controller." ---

As I've said. It's not about what intel, AMD or any PowerPC offers today (=yesterday), it's about the future. Keep in mind that Yonah's a mobile processor while the Athlon 64 X2 is nowhere near that kind of performance/watt...

TheRegister: http://www.channelregister.co.uk/2005/11/30/intel_yonah_benchmarked/

Anandtech: http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=2627&p=1
 

mdnky

[Bobs/Prog/Design:~] mod%
Staff member
Mod
fryke said:
Anandtech has tested a 2.0 GHz Yonah (dual core mobile processor!) against some AMD and intel stuff. To quote from TheRegister's interpretation:

--- "At 2.0GHz, Yonah is basically equal to, if not slightly slower than an Athlon 64 X2 running at the same clock speed in virtually all of the tests we ran," the site reports. "The important distinction here is that Intel is able to achieve that level of performance, without an on-die memory controller." ---
Yup
 

dduck

Registered
I gotta say that compared to the current offerings from AMD (current, mind you - the near-future stuff from AMD will probably outperform it handily) Yonah does not look like a slam-dunk based on the AT review. It is clearly yet another transitionary design, intended to go slightly beyond the Pentium M, but not the arch of the future. Still, it will be a nice change from the current Centrino lappies, and a more-than-nice change from a G4, so no worries... unless you REALLY think that you will REALLY need to run Windows 64 bit on it before you have to junk it for a new, faster model.

Personally I sure don't worry about the Win64 bit. All I want is to get a nice laptop, which will run OS X and allow me to develop and test for Windows occationally with reasonable performance (VMware). I expect to be able to buy that in half a year or so.
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
To prevent such comments, they should've also tested AMDs notebook processors. Because I truly think Yonah rocks if it can compare so well against AMDs desktop processors (which cost a fortune, too...).
 

dduck

Registered
fryke said:
To prevent such comments, they should've also tested AMDs notebook processors. Because I truly think Yonah rocks if it can compare so well against AMDs desktop processors (which cost a fortune, too...).
Well, I agree that it seems a mite strange that they only compare with desktop chips butI don't see how they can declare it a fabulously fast chip even tho it does not really do all that well in comparison to the chips they pit it against. Seems rather biased to me... or like they are realy comparing it against something the chose not to include.

Also, i'd add that I don't get why people get all worked up about portable performance? Clearly, if you pick a laptop, you have chosen to value portability over performance... Nothing wrong with that, BTW. As long as performance is "OK", it's plenty good for everybody. People who want to play games that require high performance on a laptop are few and far between anyway (note: WANT, not "would like to have the capability in theory, but really don't do it even if they can").
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
I guess the choice is different. I consider myself a "mobile computer person", i.e. I wouldn't really consider buying a PowerMac or iMac anytime soon, so all I care about are things like battery life and, yes, performance of the chips that _are_ a choice for notebooks. So when the desktops got the G5 processor (finally! that took a _very_ long time!), I too believed that a mobile version would follow - even if it'd take a year or something. The fact that intel creates processors for notebooks that can compete well with desktop processors thus means quite a lot to me. To say that people like me gave up performance in the first place is, I'd say, wrong. It's just that performance takes second place to portability. Doesn't mean it's not important.
 

dduck

Registered
fryke said:
It's just that performance takes second place to portability. Doesn't mean it's not important.
That's exactly what I said...

Obviously one will never get the same price/performance ratio in a portable, as one has to pay for more things (design, smaller components) and accept different desgn trade-offs. The question is how much lower performance one will accept.

As for me, as long as I get the productivity boost and lower annoyance factor of OS X, I will apparently acccept about 50% of the performance of a state-of-the-art (Wintel) desktop computer. No shame in that - performance is not the only thing to judge a computer by.
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
Oh, I overinterpreted your phrase there, it seems. Sorry. :)

From how _I_'ve read the article, they intend to have a more silent, small desktop computer, for which Yonah is great. Almost the performance of highend desktop processors with the option of having them in very small form factor cases, whereas the highend processors need a lot of fans, cooling and space.
 

Roto31

Registered
My take on the whole Intel switch is Apple was looking for more power and IBM basically said "screw you" when they started getting heavier into the game machine processors. So Apple went shopping. They decided upon Intel because of their ability to make good processors and they also have a good distrobution and manufacturing capabilty. AMD may have faster processors with a higher performance but ever notice that HP and other companies only have AMD machines at retailers at certain times of the year and not year around??? AMD has the same problem IBM had when it made the first G5's they can not build chips fast enough and distribute them quick enough. Apple didn't want another fiasco like when the G5's first came out. For Apple it's a win on their part. Also if there are those of you who know your Apple history or watched the Keynote. We should be thanking Intel a lot. Without capital from Intel Apple would not exist. That's right, I said it Apple would not exist without help from Intel almost 30 years ago. That's all I'm gonna say. I'll let the rest of you fight about it.
P.S. I hate PC nitwits who come in here to bash just to do it. Learn some respect please.It really pisses me off ;)
 

ElDiabloConCaca

U.S.D.A. Prime
fryke said:
So when the desktops got the G5 processor (finally! that took a _very_ long time!), I too believed that a mobile version would follow - even if it'd take a year or something.
Isn't the current G5 chip that Apple uses a derivative of IBM's Power5 chip that is mainly used in servers? If so, I can see why a mobile version was never released -- it was probably never intended to be a low-power, low-heat, small chip meant to be used in a small space like a portable.

This is pretty much what I've been thinking from the start, and never really had high hopes for a mobile version of the G5 -- I just don't think it was ever designed to be stuck into a portable computer.
 

goodbyegates

Registered
I think that Apple switch to Intel is going to be a good thing. It will unify the desktop computing platform to Intel (TPM is the only difference between a mactel, and everything else) That will help open source software, which has already benefited of Apple's software developers. And allow for the evolution of the general computer user to a *nix environment. It will also make it easier for Linux/open source developers (no more seperate ppc code) Until eventually, the whole world is using open source software (maybe by 2015?) and we'll be able to say "I remember a time when people would steal software, because it wasn't free"
 

aquamacus

Registered
If you look at the recent rumors surrounding apple releasing a home media device the move to intel makes more sense. Intel does a lot of things that never make the light of day because they can't get the industry behind it. This how USB was initially; intel couldn't get anyone behind it. The PC industry was still stuck on ancient protocols and interfaces. Intel gave apple a call to include this on newer machines. Now USB has become rather ubiquitous in the industry. With Apple in bed with intel it makes even more things possible...
 
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