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Apple Moves to All Dual-Processor Power Mac Lineup

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the twice-the-fun dept.

Technology (Apple) 443

Jason Siegel writes "Apple will no longer be selling single-processor Power Mac computers, according to GeekInformed. The company has officially dropped 1.8 GHz G5s from their lineup to pave the way for exclusively dual-processor Power Macs. The systems will range from dual 2 to 2.7 GHz G5s. This is the first significant announcement since the Worldwide Developers Conference declaration that Apple will transition away from PowerPC to Intel chips."

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First Post (-1, Offtopic)

Gramaton Cleric (853219) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875824)

First Post

Why upgrade now? (4, Insightful)

fembots (753724) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875827)

Apple released a statement last month that the company would be transitioning away from IBM's PowerPC CPU's in favor of Intel's microprocessors. The shift to the new processors, however, will not begin until the first part of next year.

So who would buy dual PowerPC CPU now, knowing a major shift is happening in less than a year's time?

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

smileyy (11535) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875848)

People who need one? People who will get a return on their investment by buying a new PowerMac this year?

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

Trigun (685027) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875863)

Or the people who want to buy one before they switch to the intel chip?
Or the people that keep their Mac's for five years?

Re:Why upgrade now? (5, Insightful)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875853)

People who need a mac will buy a mac.

It doesn't matter about the innards changing any more than it matters whether McDonalds uses fresh chicken nowadays.
If people want it, they will buy it.

Re:Why upgrade now? (5, Insightful)

TrippTDF (513419) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875926)

To elaborate:

The idea that people will wait for the next, better model that is right around the corner is outdated at this point. A speed boost to a computer means less today (in my opinion) than it did 5 or 10 years ago.

The transition to Intel is going to rock the Industry, but is it going to mean all that much in terms of the actual computers? I don't think so. Yes, it will mean they will get faster proscessors , but I don't think it will be so significant that holding out for a year on old hardware makes a good business descion.

Re:Why upgrade now? (3, Insightful)

phlyingpenguin (466669) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876063)

Faster? Dual G5s are going to smoke any Intel Apple releases from what I'm seeing. If folks want power, go ahead and get it. G5s aren't going to be completely phased out even after they release and I suspect all of the high powered machines will stay G5 for a while. People that want/need a dual processor 64bit solution, will buy a G5 dual processor 64bit solution.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

tktk (540564) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875943)

McDonalds uses fresh chicken?

That's not what my stomach said yesterday. And not what my intestines said this morning.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875864)


So who would buy dual PowerPC CPU now, knowing a major shift is happening in less than a year's time?

Um, the people who want to buy a Mac now? Intel processors coming out in the future doesn't suddenly make existing Macs stop working, and considering how long it will take Intel Macs to gain a majority of the Apple installed base, PPC is still going to be the most important Mac platform to support for years to come.

Re:Why upgrade now? (3, Funny)

Nexx (75873) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875881)

Sods like me who waited too long? :)

Re:Why upgrade now? (5, Insightful)

piecewise (169377) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875883)

Uh... Because most people, especially professionals (and more so professionals whose companies pay for the equipment), don't like waiting an additional YEAR for a product they use every day, most notably when a lease term says you can have new equipment anyway.

The whole idea that announcing a transition will destroy Apple's market share is just stupid.

I won't be eating crow in a year, either.

Re:Why upgrade now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875885)

Two words, and a punctuation mark:

Universal Binaries.

Re:Why upgrade now? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875939)

They won't be fast though. Long time mac users will once again have to suffer from the pain inflicted on them by the knee jerk reactions of Steve Jobs.
Sure it might be fast to run your x86 binaries under ppc, but not the other way around.
Apple Engineers might be engineers, but they certainly are not miracle works (Reference the second button on a mouse).

Re:Why upgrade now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875992)

you don't actually know what universal binaries are, do you?

thought not.

stfu.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

Canadian_Daemon (642176) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876048)

couldn't they just go like Gentoo and distribute the src. That way it would be platform independant ( and faster) If they could only find a way to speed up the compile.....

Re:Why upgrade now? (4, Informative)

clarkcox3 (194009) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876040)

You don't understand what Universal Binaries are. They are simply a renaming of the old Next "fat" binaries. That is, they contain *completely native* code for two or more platforms. This is completely separate from Rosetta, and has nothing to do with emulation in any form. Please get your facts straight.

Re:Why upgrade now? (2, Insightful)

Zo0ok (209803) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875890)

iBooks and PowerBooks will come within a year. The G5:s will be substituted in two years. If you want a PowerMac isn't a bit tough to wait two years?

This is of course just me guessing, but naturally they will start switch the G4s to Intel.

Re:Why upgrade now? (4, Insightful)

Mistah Blue (519779) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875892)

Because they are still good machines and will be supported for a long time. Why hold your needs hostage if those machines solve them now? I don't know about you, but I wouldn't want to make a switch to the Mac line on rev 1 of the Macintel machines. I just switched to a PB 15" in Feb. and am actually pleased that I just did it as opposed to a year or two ago.

Had I switched a year or two ago, I would be at my normal refresh point when the new Macintel machines start coming out and would feel a little internal pressure that might cause me to blaze a trail on the first rev of the new line. Having just switched, that isn't going to be a problem for me.

I find it interesting that people allow things like this to hold up buying decisions. The fact is there are always technology shifts going on. Why not get a PowerPC now if you need it, and then you can jump in to the Macintel waters on your own timescale?

Re:Why upgrade now? (4, Insightful)

MustardMan (52102) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875898)

Who would buy a Dell computer now, knowing much faster systems will be available in less than a year's time?

This question has really bugged me every time I have heard it since the announcement. I just bought a dual G5 machine and don't regret it at all. I needed a new computer, picked out the one that best suited my needs, and brought it home. It's one thing to wait for a month or two if there's a major revision around the corner, but I see no reason at all to change your purchase decisions based on something that's going to START coming out in a year.

With the ease of x-code's fat binaries, there's very little incentive for a developer to write programs that will only run on intel macs, so why get all bent out of shape about buying a machine now?

Wait, now that you mention it, I'm not going to buy any machine right now, because I'm afraid it might not run Duke Nukem: Forever when it comes out.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

rayde (738949) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875949)

i agree, if building fat binaries is truly as easy as they say it is, i think people who buy current macs are gonna be fine for several years to come, especially as far as major software packages go.

perhaps the odd app here and there will be incompatible, but at the same time, there does exist a very wide range of unique PPC apps currently that likely will never make their way to Intel.

Re:Why upgrade now? (4, Interesting)

Golias (176380) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876046)

perhaps the odd app here and there will be incompatible, but at the same time, there does exist a very wide range of unique PPC apps currently that likely will never make their way to Intel.

I'll even put on my Carnac hat and break it down for you:

1. There will probably be a native WINE port for OS X within months of the first Mac-on-Intel release which will not run on the G5. This will allow the running of various Windows apps without rebooting or even leaving the OS X desktop. Geeks will love the fact that damn near all Windows and Linux software will in CPU-native mode within OS X, but old-school Mac heads probably won't care much.

2. It has already been announced that the Intel Macs will never be capable of running "Classic" applications. Fans of old Mac programs like Quark will be all a-tizzy about squeezing maximum life out of the remaining G5 systems, but nobody else will care.

Pretty much everything else is likely to work just fine on either platform.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

clarkcox3 (194009) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876066)

They really are that easy. If your code is even remotely well written (i.e. doesn't rely on undefined behavior, doesn't make endian assumptions, etc.), it literally is as simple as "a check box and a few tweaks" ... just like it was on Next.

Re:Why upgrade now? (3, Informative)

Princeofcups (150855) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875927)


Me, in about a half hour. I'm picking up a dual 2.7GHz and 23" display at the Apple Store.

1 - I'll be able to resell it for 50%+ of the cost.

2 - I can keep the monitor when I get a new Intel system.

3 - Although many apps will be fat by the rollout of the new machines, many will only work on the PPC.

I figure an upgrade to Intel in about three years. I see no hurry to rush onto the bleeding edge of new technology.

jfs

Re:Why upgrade now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875937)

PowerMacs will be the last of the product line to be converted to intel. Need now=buy now.

Re:Why upgrade now? (3, Informative)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875959)

I may be mistaken, but didn't they announce they were switching the low end manchines first? They also said the switch would be completed by 2007, which means there won't be a machine to match a dual 2.7GHz G5 for a good two years yet (assuming they _do_ complete on time). While Macs do tend to outlive PCs, two years of use minimum plus a decent resale value isn't too bad a deal if you need a machine any time soon, and it will be supported for longer if you don't feel a need for the latest and greatest. Not a great deal, but not too bad.

Also it's a nice number cruncher in its own right - Linux PPC will be around for a long time yet so it's not like the machine dies when OSX support drops. Like I said, you won't get the greatest value by buying now but it's not an all round bad idea either.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875993)

Just because it isn't sold anymore doesn't mean it isn't supported anymore. Apple and third party companies tend to support the previous machines for many years. I bought a dual G5 a few months ago and I don't regret it even after the announcement. New software for the PowerPC systems will probably still be developed for five years given that it is so simple to develop a cross-platform binary, and that Mac users tend to keep their systems for longer than most people, even the G3 PowerMacs are still suppored by Tiger.

Re:PPC Software (2, Interesting)

Macrat (638047) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876001)

I'll be sure to upgrade with the last PowerMac PPC's sold because I know all my Mac apps will still run on it. Contrary to Apple's claims of a simply recompile, many software packages are going to need a lot of rework to run on Mac Intel boxes.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

RealAlaskan (576404) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876020)

The shift to the new processors, ... will not begin until the first part of next year.

So, why upgrade now?

Well, if you're buying a new machine every year or so anyway, you don't care that these are the last of the Powermacs, and that you will soon be stuck with an orphan.

If you aren't buying a new, top of the line Mac every year or so, just because, then you've got good reason to wait a year or so, while they shake the bugs out of the new offerings.

Apple probably figured out that the early announcement was only going to hurt discretionary, low-end sales for the next six months (if that), and decided they could live with the hit.

Re:Why upgrade now? (3, Insightful)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876021)

Insurance.

If the next stuff sucks, or is lacking in any way, it'll be nice to have the last of the good stuff.

Re:Why upgrade now? (1)

sundaydriver (889235) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876030)

Will all my software stop working when they ship Intel Macs? Was the whole concept of universal binaries just a joke? PowerPC Macs will be around for years, and I can think of no reason why a publisher would exclusively release Intel binaries until 2008-2009.

Re:Why upgrade now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12876061)

How about someone who NEEDS a new computer RIGHT NOW and can't wait for a year?

How about someone who's been saving up and finally has the scratch to get a serious machine and doesn't want to wait another year?

How about someone who just wants a new computer?

How about someone who doesn't want to buy the 1.0 version of the MacIntel platform, who instead wants a machine with the kinks worked out?

How about you? Would you wait another year for a new computer if your current system was of diminishing usefulness?

Besides that, who says it's going to be a year? I expect the first systems to show up in six months, and MWSF. Oh, I don't know if they'll be for sale that day, but I don't think we'll have to wait until June 2006.

Clearing existing component inventory? (2, Insightful)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875828)

I don't know how much G5 parts Apple's got in their warehouse, but surely this move is to clear their existing inventory to make way for x86?

Re:Clearing existing component inventory? (2, Interesting)

sH4RD (749216) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875844)

Hey, if they're dropping prices, I'm dropped Benjamins.

no (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875902)

Surely not, given that the first Intel Macintosh won't be released until mid-2006.

Doubt it (5, Insightful)

Joshua53077 (849570) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875996)

My guess is that the single processor G5 had a similar price point to the iMac, which has similar specs, plus a built in LCD. MacMall lists the 1.8 Ghz power mac at $1495 and for the same price they offer a 2 Ghz iMac. My feeling is that they want to keep the lines between the iMac and the Power Mac pretty clear to eliminate customer confusion. Plus, dual processor Power Macs have been available for about 4 years and there have been several times that they've only been available in dual processor configurations. I wouldn't read much into it and I think its too early to start thinking about clearing inventory of Power PC chips. Remember that the high end chips are rumored to be transititioned in late 06.

Still dual processor when they go Intel? (4, Interesting)

gbulmash (688770) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875832)

Here's a question, and my apologies if it's been asked and answered before. Will Apple stay the dual-processor course when they move to Intel? I don't mean dual core Pentiums. I mean two slabs of silicon, like a dual Xeon setup. And with Intel moving more and more to dual-core across the lines... Dual core, dual processor, OS/X... Dang.

Then again, who knows where desktop Linux will be in 16 months with the Mandrake/Connectiva/Lycoris mergers, the rise of Ubuntu... And think of that on dual core, dual processor... ohhh... Someone get me a tissue!

Regardless, next year's going to be interesting if you're in the market for a new box. :-)

- Greg

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875859)

Wouldn't Apple be much better off using dual-core Opterons than a pair of Xeon CPUs?

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (3, Insightful)

gbulmash (688770) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875924)

Yes, but they specifically said "Intel"... not "x86"... "Intel".

OS/X on a top-of-the-line dual Opteron. I think many geeks cry at night at the thought of this child of imagination that may never be born. I've had to hold back a tear.

But they said "Intel".

- Greg

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (1)

SatanMat (757225) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875960)

Will Apple stay the dual-processor course when they move to Intel?


Don't know Apple has not told us anything about what their new computers are going to have other than Intel chips...


That notwithstanding, I think they will use what ever will give them the best performance. I don't think they will ues anything that will hurt their sales...

Keep in mind that since OS X is built for dp on the PPC I would guess they will compile the Intel version to also be ready for dp. as well as all the Apple apps. ie iTunes, iLife, iWork, iETC... cheers.

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (1)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875971)

Well they certainly give up their "We are on 64 bit" chant. Seeing has Conroe and Yonah are both M-based archs, apple is going nowhere.

Say hello to PXE boys!
I'm off to buy myself an Opteron.

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875973)

Then imagine a beowulf cluster of .... oh, nevermind. (What a waste of a comment when I could have used mod points!)

Re:Still dual processor when they go Intel? (1, Interesting)

amichalo (132545) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875988)

There is disputable evidence that points to Apple's interest in supporting more than 2 processors. Take for example image [macrumors.com] which depicts two screen captures of an Apple system utility. The top one is an other version which was replaced with the bottom image that depicts an N+1 approach to processor display rather than the previous versions 1 or 2.

Certainly not an open and shut case.

Other ramblings and rumors came in the form of a January 2005 4 processor Xserve for research institutions. This never materialized. Perhaps it was too costly. I believe that at the time Apple was having such a hard time securing G5 chips from IBM that they would rather build 4 iMacs than 1 Xserve.

Still, there were rumors that the keynote announcing the Intel deal, which included a demo on a PowerMac, was in fact powered by a quad-Pentium powered box. Were these the musings of a frantic fanbase or real facts? Impossible for me to say.

I would say that Apple is the only manufacturer I can think of that has regularly embraced the multiprocessor market. OS X is more adept than Windows at taking advantage of a second processor, delivering more bang for the same buck. So I would not discount the >2 processor option coming in future Macs.

...a new box.. (1)

CdBee (742846) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876010)

look at the market for a new box of the other sort and you can drop that tissue, friend!

Hasn't it been this way for a while? (1)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875835)


The lowest you've been able to get is a dual 2.0GHz

Right?

Re:Hasn't it been this way for a while? (2, Informative)

flamingnight (234353) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875871)

Nope. There was a single 1.8 that was (IIRC) available, then unavailable, then available again.

Re:Hasn't it been this way for a while? (3, Informative)

GROOFY (855580) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875966)

That was in the online store. The 1.8 GHZ has been available at Apple retail stores pretty consistently.

This way they use up their old chips twice as fast (1)

updatelee (244571) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875836)

If your going to switch processors (ppc to intel) then you want to use up the old stock, switch to dual processor only and use them up twice as fast :)

Re:This way they use up their old chips twice as f (1)

devphaeton (695736) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876023)

If your going to switch processors (ppc to intel) then you want to use up the old stock, switch to dual processor only and use them up twice as fast :)

This is what everyone keep saying, but aren't chips intended for SMP designed a little differently than ones intended for single?

Of course, we have yet to see any OS (aside from high-end UNIX/mainframe implementations) yet that can fully take advantage of a dual proc system, much less a 64-bit dual proc system.....

Oh well.

This has nothing to do with the Intel announcement (3, Insightful)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875838)

Is this how it is going to be from now on? Any time Apple changes a model, drops a speed, or something it's going to be attributed to Intel?

The 1.8GHz was an expensive system for no more than it offered, especially compared to an iMac. You started around $1899 and then had to buy a monitor and it wasn't any faster than an iMac based on reader reports.

So it makes sense to remove single proc models from the lineup with dual proc models available.

Re:This has nothing to do with the Intel announcem (0)

noewun (591275) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875914)

But for $1,299 refurb'd from Apple's website, it was a great alternative to the iMac. $45 for a used Dell 17 inch monitor from Craigslist and I have a machine with a graphics card I can upgrade and an empty drive bay just waiting to be filled.

Re:This has nothing to do with the Intel announcem (1)

Boone^ (151057) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875920)

It was my understanding that when Apple re-released the single-processor PMac 1.8, they used the iMac G5s in that it had a 1/3-speed FSB. (1.8 GHz = 600 FSB) whereas historically PMac's have had 1/2-speed FSBs.

Re:This has nothing to do with the Intel announcem (1)

MooseByte (751829) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875921)


"Is this how it is going to be from now on? Any time Apple changes a model, drops a speed, or something it's going to be attributed to Intel?"

Well I guess once they've switched to Intel CPUs that will certainly seem fair. :-)

But yeah, I agree. The single-CPU 1.8GHz model was a lame duck. The 1.8GHz G5 iMac was coming in cheaper, LCD screen included. They had to do something to shore up the bottom end of the PowerMac series regardless.

Whoop-de-frickin'-do (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875843)

this is not news!!! apple has had only DP powermac lineups in the past (g4). who cares?

Why such a focus on power? (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875847)

Why would Apple be so focused on only selling uberpowerful models? Not to ruffle any feathers, but isn't the primary audience Apple's trying to grab onto right now the average user? Why would Joe Average need a dual processor mac to surf the web and do his taxes on?

If thats all you need to do... (2, Insightful)

manonthemoon (537690) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875872)

you buy a mini or an iMac.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875887)

Joe Average would be better off buying a Mac Mini or an iMac. If you're asking why _Power_ Macs are focused on power...I don't think there's a very complicated answer to that.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (1)

Oliver Defacszio (550941) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875888)

These are PowerMacs. They're not meant for the Larry Lunchpails of the world.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (3, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875889)

Why would Apple be so focused on only selling uberpowerful models? Not to ruffle any feathers, but isn't the primary audience Apple's trying to grab onto right now the average user?

The powermacs are their professional towers. imacs and mac minis are aimed at non-power users.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (1)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875905)

Because the PowerMac line is their uber powerful model line, They also have a nice iMac and Mac Mini line that is targeted squarely at Joe Average, not Joe Movie Editor or Joe Sound Guy, or Joe with more money then sense guy.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (1)

tktk (540564) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875915)

I think the sales strategy is to get the average user to buy the iBook and iMac lines. The Powerbook and PowerMac lines are for the uber-users.

Course, no one would complain if Joe Average bought a PowerMac to surf the web.

Re:Why such a focus on power? (0)

Quattro Vezina (714892) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875953)

Agreed. Apple seems to be shooting at the low-end (iMac, Mac Mini) and at the high-end (Power Mac), and completely ignoring the mid-range.

The only options for desktop Macs are either an underpowered iMac or Mac Mini, or an overpowered Power Mac. As cool as a dual G5 sounds, the price is a major turn off. The only desktop Mac that I'm really interested in buying is the Mini--while the specs are lower than even the iMac, the form factor is much more attractive (the bigger draw for me is actually the ability to use a CRT monitor, not the size, but that's still very nice).

The only Macs that are realy balanced are the laptops, especially the 12" PowerBook. I came very close to buying a 12" PowerBook when I was shopping for a laptop a few months ago, and the only reason I bought a Toshiba instead was that I felt the Toshiba had better Linux support.

Questionable Apple News (4, Insightful)

WatertonMan (550706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875849)

OK. I love Macs. I'm terribly interested in the future of the platform. But come on. Half the Apple stories the last few months haven't been news at all. This one certainly isn't. I bring this up because I kind of worry about the Mac losing it's nice Karma due to some of the silly hyping of the platform.

Hmmm (1)

DavidChristopher (633902) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875856)

How nice. Old news. This was reported by macrumors back on June 15th

http://www.macrumors.com/pages/2005/06/20050615105 533.shtml [macrumors.com] when they dropped the single 1.8 from their store.
Here's the link to the news.com story http://news.com.com/Bye-bye%2C+single-chip+Power+M ac/2100-1042_3-5754622.html [com.com]

Makes some sense. (1)

Rhys (96510) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875858)

Getting developers prepared for a multi-core world that's going to be up and coming in the next generation of processors. Can't avoid it so you may as well embrace it. Especially with Apple's focus on "use our toolkits, we'll vectorize (or maybe they mean parallelize in general) it for you."

The real question is... (-1, Redundant)

gUmbi (95629) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875861)

Is Apple going by selling ANY PowerMac computers? Seriously, who is going to buy into a platform that will be obsolete in 9 months?

Re:The real question is... (2, Funny)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875876)

You're new to computer purchasing, aren't you? Any machine bought today can be considered obsolete in 9 months by someones standards.

Re:The real question is... (1)

killtherat (177924) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875997)

Yes, but we're talk about the standards where no companies actually produce software for it any more. How many more versions of MacOSX do you think Apple is going to make that are actually released for the PPC. This hardware won't be obsolete because it's under powered, it'll be obsolete because no one is supporting it any more.

A little chicken little, yes I know.
But, now-a-days it's not like you need twice the CPU speed to email/webbrowse/write word docs. There is no reason to be new computers other then vanity and video games.
So how can apple keep making money? Forced obsolescence. Move the OS to a new chip and drop support to the old one. A whole new batch of hardware sales to keep your company alive.
Because Microsoft can't force obsolescence in the same way, the Wintel machine machine you buy today will have a much longer shelf life then a mac.

Re:The real question is... (1)

gUmbi (95629) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876015)

That's why I said 'platform' not 'computer'

Re:The real question is... (1)

coopaq (601975) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875930)

Is Apple going by selling ANY PowerMac computers? Seriously, who is going to buy into a platform that will be obsolete in 9 months?

They have been building OS X internally on PowerPC and Intel for a lone time.

Tiger is not the last OS X you'll get for you PowerPC based Mac. It will be relevant for years to come.

A large install base exists.

They will drop OS X for PowerPC someday, but not in 9 months.

Re:The real question is... (1)

AnObfuscator (812343) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875941)

Is Apple going by selling ANY PowerMac computers? Seriously, who is going to buy into a platform that will be obsolete in 9 months?

Right, because every *other* computer sold now will still be tip-top in 9 months. How terrible that Apple is selling computers that *get old* and are *surpassed* by newer technology... oh the horror! There should totally be a law against that...

ME! (1)

mihalis (28146) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875955)

who is going to buy into a platform that will be obsolete in 9 months?

By the time I got mine (dual 2.7) the announcement was out. I probably could have returned it, but I have kept it and you know what? It's FANTASTIC. I bought it to render my iDVD files quicker and it's about 20X faster. Sure I know this may be due to larger caches and not representative of the general performance level, but I don't care, that's what it's there for!

It is the fastest way to run Apple software for at least the next 9 months. I don't know about you, but I plan to do a lot of work during that time!

Sure, if I hadn't bought by the time the Macintels are about to launch I would hold off, but you know what, even then what I might look for is cheaper G5s. No way do I want potential unstable Mac-OS-on-Intel driver issues in my dream machine Powermac. No, for me G5 dualies have a long life ahead of them.

Re:The real question is... (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875963)

What computer isn't obsolete in 9 months?

Who worries about obsolescence? I'm not a gamer, so my previous computer lasted 5 years. All I did was add hard drive space and memory - a firewire and USB card when that became the rage. It did everything that it did when I bought it - it didn't slow down over the years or anything. When it finally refused to power up one day, I went out and bought another one. Hopefully it will follow the same path.

Re:The real question is... (1)

SirSlud (67381) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876039)

>Seriously, who is going to buy into a platform that will be obsolete in 9 months?

If you go by that logic, nobody would ever buy a videocard.

At some point, you have to buy.

PS. not made no more != unsupported

Try several years (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876050)

How's your PC going to be looking about seven years from now? Because that's about how long a Mac purchased now ill be useful for NEW software being built.

Any software maker writing for the Mac is going to be shipping universal binaries for years to come as it make no sense for a business to drop more than half the market. Probably three years from now half the market will still be PPC macs. And once the cross-platform issues or fixed there's little to do to keep maintining those universal builds.

In fact, if you think about it is this absolutley the best time to buy a Mac. These macs are going to be the primary tested units for 99% of software for at least three years due to marketshare. The real question is who are going to be the early adoptors of the Intel macs when they come out, since they will not have full software availiablity right off the bat.

The final determiner of how long PPC macs will maintain usefullness is how long Apple will support the PPC units with new versions of OSX. And that has been about five to seven years, so you have that time as a base.

It's odd to me that so many seemingly people on Slashdot have got the problem Apple has so exactly wrong. Supporting hardware that already exists in large numbers is not the difficult part of a platform transition!!

Re:The real question is... (1)

Quattro Vezina (714892) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876056)

Me.

I'd love to have a PPC machine to dick around with, and the fact that Apple is dropping PPC is probably going to make me get up off my arse and buy one before it's too late (well, when I get the money, that is...).

Granted, when I do buy a PPC Mac, it'll almost certainly be a Mac Mini, not a Power Mac, but the Mini will be just as obsolete as the Power Mac in two years...

and I care why? (0, Flamebait)

Bootle (816136) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875862)

I even own a mac and this article is complete non-news. I wonder how long it will be before it's duped???

Too many PPC chips? (1)

said_captain_said_wo (889009) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875867)

So, they dump PPC because they can't get enough of the right kinds of chips, then they stop shipping single-CPU systems which would seemingly help make a limited supply last longer...

Huh??

product line differentiation (3, Insightful)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875868)

This move is good for more clearly differentiating Apple's product lines. Now there's a clear difference between a PowerMac and an iMac: the former have two processors. (And the clear difference between a PowerBook and an iBook is that the former are silver-colored.)

Re:product line differentiation (1)

the_rev_matt (239420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875928)

And iBook screens are limited to 1024x768 and 1.25G of RAM, while PB's go up to 1280x1024 and 2G on the 15" model and 1440x900 with 2G on the 17". I don't think it justifies the price difference, but that's what there is.

System Bus, etc. (1)

Black-Man (198831) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876019)

167 for the PB, 133 for the ibook. Video cards are different also. Does it justify the cost? To me... no.

G5 vs P4 ? (1)

SamSeaborn (724276) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875870)

Just wondering,

If I had a choice between a PowerMac with G5 2.7 GHz or Pentium 4 3.6 GHz, which is faster?

I would guess they're both about the same -- but I don't really know -- and Apple wants Intel more for the Pent M processor for their PowerBooks rather than desktops.

Sam

Re:G5 vs P4 ? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875901)

If you use Photoshop: G5
If you use anything else: P4
If you run spyware: G5

Re:G5 vs P4 ? (3, Insightful)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876033)

The opteron would be faster in about everything. Cheaper too.

clicky [anandtech.com]

Re:G5 vs P4 ? (4, Insightful)

forkazoo (138186) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876054)

I am almost tempted to wonder if this is a troll. Is there really anybody left who doesn't understand that this isn't a useful question?

What do you want to do? The G5 will be excellent at some things. The P4 at others. Some server apps which use lots of system calls, thread management, and such will be hampered by the architecture of Mac OS X. Some compute intensive apps will run incredibly well on the G5 compared to the P4. If you want to use Final Cut Pro, the G5 will run it faster, and if you want to run XSI, the P4 will be faster, because you would have to run under emulation to try and run FCP on a P4 or XSI on a G5.

Anand Tech recently did some benchmarks, which you may find interesting.

Are you planning on running your own code? I quite like the XCode IDE because it uses gcc as a backend. Is all your legacy code MSVCPP MFC projects? Then it will be more hassle to get it running on the G5.

So, yeah, it all depends. I use an iBookG4 as my primary system, because it is fast enough for 90% f what I do. It's light, it's portable, it has UNIX guts and a top notch UI. My secondary system is my Athlon64 with Nvidia GFX. It's big, it's fast, I have to turn it on with my car key, the GUI is adequate, and it runs lightwave almost fast enough. (Just need it to be about 10-100 times faster, like always). It's got four fans, and it is noisy. I wouldn't dream of getting rid of either.

Dual Confusion (0)

ndansmith (582590) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875880)

Did anyone else read "Apple Moves to All Dual-Core PowerMac Lineup"? I need to get my eyes checked because I am seeing double.

./ is DEAD!! (this old news) (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12875917)

./ is DEAD [fscklaw.com] .

This is old news; just like the Apple ./ story (apple + nokia webrowser thang). ./ nows loves everything Apple, and subsequently reports the Apple-love-fest weeks later than other news sources. ./ is Dead.

Re:./ is DEAD!! (this old news) (1)

richdun (672214) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875950)

./ ? This is Slashdot, you insensitive clod! Quit rubbing it in that Dotslash is dead.

Re:./ is DEAD!! (this old news) (1)

FreeBSDbigot (162899) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875991)

What is this "dot slash" of which you speak?

Apple Reducing Choice (1, Interesting)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875936)

So they're clearly reducing buyer's choices in scaling back the number of lines supported. Sounds like buyers now have the choices of Cheap (MiniMac) or Expensive (dual processor G5).

Must have run out of single-processor MBs and don't want to make more since the other reason (converting lines over to Intel manufacture) wouldn't seem likely given that the processors Apple intends to use aren't available from Intel yet.

I can't see how any of this is going to increase their marketshare any.

Transition quickening (0, Redundant)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875942)

That's one way to get rid of all your old processors... :)

Encouragement for good SMP support? (4, Interesting)

Sv-Manowar (772313) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875947)

With the impending move to x86 architecture, this could be Apple posturing to encourage developers to work on the SMP capabilities of their programs. Intel's chips obviously feature things like HyperThreading and dual cores, making extracting the best possible performance require good SMP code. Obviously by phasing out the idea of a non-SMP 'Power' mac, Apple can encourage developers of scientific, processing and even mainstream applications (to an extent) to take better notice and make better use of SMP capable systems.

G5 chip supplies. (1)

Queer Boy (451309) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875957)

I guess they have to find SOME way of burning through those chips now that no one will be investing in an architecture that's been EOLed

Orphan Machines? (5, Interesting)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 9 years ago | (#12875969)

Surely once Apple moves away from the PPC architecture, the developers will not continue developing software for the platform, will they? Will Apple provide an emulator so you can run X86 binaries on that spiffy PPC Mac you bought today? Wouldn't it be a performance hit to run programs that way?

Re:Orphan Machines? (1)

saddino (183491) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876038)

Short answer: no, once a project is ready for x86, it'll still compile for PPC.

Long answer: The APIs for OS X development (Cocoa and Carbon) are not changing, so no, there is no reason developers will (or should) ever decide to build only one set of binaries for x86 without building binaries for PPC at the same time. The default will always be to build a Universal Binary containing native binaries for both platforms.

Worry (3, Interesting)

renelicious (450403) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876000)

I think my biggest concern is that Apple will make the shift to Intel and then shortly after IBM gets their productions ramped up. Apple decides to continue to produce G5 Macs and then after 6 months or so drops Intel altogether. Then those few that bought x86 systems become the bastard children that Apple wants to forget.

I just don't see what would keep them on Intel if IBM could start performing. They have always seemed to like to have the niche of a different architecture. I'm a little wary of the whole thing.

In other news... (1)

UTPinky (472296) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876005)

Dell moves to all 256+ MB RAM desktops...

Seriously, is this really that big of an announcement?

Awesome...Now you can't buy a PowerMac (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12876009)

that works with the Cisco VPN Client in 10.4...

Whis is this such big news? (1)

RustNeverSleeps (846857) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876011)

I'm not sure why this news is so big. It's even on the front page of Google News right now. Apple had an all dual-processor Power Mac lineup last year too. The re-introduced the single processor model in October, 2004. The fact that it's been dropped is not really too surprising. I wondered why they didn't drop it a while back when they last updated the rest of the Power Mac line. A single 1.8 GHz Power Mac is not a good deal when you can get a faster iMac with a better GPU, more features and a screen for the same price.

Going Dual (5, Funny)

WindFish (812433) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876029)

We're still waiting on that dual-button mouse.

Re:Going Dual, or why I love my mouse (0)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 9 years ago | (#12876051)

We're still waiting on that dual-button mouse.

That only comes with the triple-CPU Uber Mac, coming out in 2007 ...
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