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testcss
Apr 21, 2011, 07:05 PM
Just imagine along with me, Apple introduces A6 processors that will be used in Macs as well as iPads, etc. Would you buy a MBA with an A6? Here is what I believe it would look like:

11" MBA $999

A6 1.6 ghz variable dual-core ( variable meaning it can boost to like 2 ghz, but also down clock to 1ghz to conserve electricity.)
3 gb ram (1 gb integrated plus 2 gb external)
128 gb ssd
Integrated A6 Graphics 256 mb (about as powerful as 9400m)
15 hour battery life ( this is quite feasible considering the lower-power parts.)

13" MBA $1299
A6 1.8 ghz boosts to 2.4 ghz, down clocks to 1.2 ghz
256 gb ssd
Integrated A6 Graphics 256 mb
12 hour battery life

Would you buy these MBA's running Lion or a Sandy Bridge variant such as:

11" MBA $999
i3 1.2 ghz
intel 3000 graphics

etc.

I would personally choose the A6 even though they lack performance. The energy-efficiency and thinness that could be achieved would be amazing! Apple would have to start manufacturing their processors though, as I doubt Samsung will do anything for them after the sue job:)



Oppressed
Apr 21, 2011, 07:23 PM
Apple use to make processors. Power PC G4 and previous series. Long story short the Intel chips were an upgrade.

Legion93
Apr 21, 2011, 07:31 PM
15 hour battery life is over ridiculous, even the pro's did not manage to gain over 10 hours, even with SB processors, it won't manage that much

Nermal
Apr 21, 2011, 07:33 PM
Apple use to make processors. Power PC G4 and previous series.

PowerPC chips were from IBM and Motorola.

Cerano
Apr 21, 2011, 07:47 PM
clock for clock the A4-A6 SOC cant even compete with a C2D or possibly Atom. How can they fight with SB?

Slix
Apr 21, 2011, 07:51 PM
If Apple did it, it'd be amazingly awesome and fast. Maybe someday...

Demosthenes X
Apr 21, 2011, 10:25 PM
So they would have a slower processor than a SB-based Air, and have worse graphics than a SB-based Air. What are the benefits, here?

HelloPanda
Apr 21, 2011, 10:27 PM
15 hour battery life is over ridiculous, even the pro's did not manage to gain over 10 hours, even with SB processors, it won't manage that much

Let me introduce you to a little company called Lenovo. See, they make this laptop called Thinkpad X220, that gets an estimated 8 hours with a 6-cell, 15 hours with a 9-cell, and 23 hours with a 6+Slice Battery Combination.

alust2013
Apr 21, 2011, 10:30 PM
I'll pass. It's nice to be able to compare specs across the line of Macs and PCs. Macs have become a lot more popular and user-friendly since Apple switch to intel from PPC, and they're making more money now, so I don't think they'll go back to proprietary stuff.

bloodycape
Apr 21, 2011, 10:53 PM
15 hour battery life is over ridiculous, even the pro's did not manage to gain over 10 hours, even with SB processors, it won't manage that much

The Lenovo X220(12.5in) with the full voltage SB cpu, and IPS screen option(can affect battery life from what I read) can do a little over 8 hours with the 6-cell and 14-16.5 hour range with the 6-cell and battery slice option in real world usage according to the reviews. I would think with just the 9-cell it can do 10+ hours and 9-cell + battery slice 20+ hours. I guess we could get similar battery life if Apple offered some slick slice option for the whole Macbook line and didn't care about thinness.

Edit: I guess I missed the post above me.

mrsir2009
Apr 21, 2011, 10:56 PM
Let me introduce you to a little company called Lenovo. See, they make this laptop called Thinkpad X220, that gets an estimated 8 hours with a 6-cell, 15 hours with a 9-cell, and 23 hours with a 6+Slice Battery Combination.

We use those netbooks at school, and while the battery life is great, the laptop is very crappy: Cramped as keyboard, cramped as trackpad, crappy underpowered atom processor... I'd rather have a MBA with not as good battery life any-day.

Bottom line: Lenovo has sacrificed everything to make those netbooks have a long battery life. Its the only thing they've got going for them...

HelloPanda
Apr 21, 2011, 11:23 PM
We use those netbooks at school, and while the battery life is great, the laptop is very crappy: Cramped as keyboard, cramped as trackpad, crappy underpowered atom processor... I'd rather have a MBA with not as good battery life any-day.

Bottom line: Lenovo has sacrificed everything to make those netbooks have a long battery life. Its the only thing they've got going for them...

The Thinkpad X220 is not a netbook, since it has a fully powered i3-i7 SandyBridge Processor and can take up to 8 GB of 1333MHZ RAM. It has bluetooth, 720p Webcam, FingerPrint Reader and IPS Display

It's a powerful NOTEBOOK. A business NOTEBOOK.

solaris7
Apr 21, 2011, 11:39 PM
Let companies continue to do what they do best. Apply should not interfere.

mrsir2009
Apr 21, 2011, 11:41 PM
The Thinkpad X220 is not a netbook, since it has a fully powered i3-i7 SandyBridge Processor and can take up to 8 GB of 1333MHZ RAM. It has bluetooth, 720p Webcam, FingerPrint Reader and IPS Display

It's a powerful NOTEBOOK. A business NOTEBOOK.

Oh the ones at my school are idea-pads (small and ******).

TheMacBookPro
Apr 21, 2011, 11:43 PM
So you want:

Slower processor (clock speed doesn't matter as much these days)
Less RAM
Worse graphics by far
Incompatible with most Mac software
Incompatible with Boot Camp
Same price

Apple would have to reprogram OS X to run on the Ax SOC and 3rd party devs would have to do the same. Unless you want to emulate...

Come again?

SnowLeopard2008
Apr 22, 2011, 12:30 AM
We use those netbooks at school, and while the battery life is great, the laptop is very crappy: Cramped as keyboard, cramped as trackpad, crappy underpowered atom processor... I'd rather have a MBA with not as good battery life any-day.

Bottom line: Lenovo has sacrificed everything to make those netbooks have a long battery life. Its the only thing they've got going for them...

Really? I think Lenovo made the best netbooks. The design wasn't fugly as Dell or HP and the build quality wasn't as cheap as Acer or Asus.

The Lenovo X220(12.5in) with the full voltage SB cpu, and IPS screen option(can affect battery life from what I read) can do a little over 8 hours with the 6-cell and 14-16.5 hour range with the 6-cell and battery slice option in real world usage according to the reviews. I would think with just the 9-cell it can do 10+ hours and 9-cell + battery slice 20+ hours. I guess we could get similar battery life if Apple offered some slick slice option for the whole Macbook line and didn't care about thinness.

Edit: I guess I missed the post above me.

Exactly. If you make the battery bigger (which is what the "slice" battery is), you'll get more juice out of it. That's nothing new.

GadgetAddict
Apr 22, 2011, 12:53 AM
So you want:

Slower processor (clock speed doesn't matter as much these days)
Less RAM
Worse graphics by far
Incompatible with most Mac software
Incompatible with Boot Camp
Same price

Apple would have to reprogram OS X to run on the Ax SOC and 3rd party devs would have to do the same. Unless you want to emulate...

Come again?

...and this ends the discussion...

SidBala
Apr 22, 2011, 01:37 AM
Apple use to make processors. Power PC G4 and previous series. Long story short the Intel chips were an upgrade.

No. IBM used to make the PowerPC chips that powered older macs. Some years before that, Motorolla used to make the chips.


I would gladly take a 1.2GHz Sandy Bridge than any A6 or whatever at 2.4GHz.

Satori
Apr 22, 2011, 01:49 AM
No. IBM used to make the PowerPC chips that powered older macs. Some years before that, Motorolla used to make the chips.


Correct but PowerPC was created by the Apple–IBM–Motorola (AIM) alliance in 1991. (Sorry off topic, I know!)

Anyhoo, ARM processors (such as the A6 or whatever) won't be replacing Intel ones in PCs anytime soon. They are designed for different types of device.

Hastings101
Apr 22, 2011, 01:58 AM
Eek, not another architecture change. I'd rather they just stick with x86 in the Macs, ARM is for the istuff

mrsir2009
Apr 22, 2011, 02:03 AM
Really? I think Lenovo made the best netbooks. The design wasn't fugly as Dell or HP and the build quality wasn't as cheap as Acer or Asus.



Exactly. If you make the battery bigger (which is what the "slice" battery is), you'll get more juice out of it. That's nothing new.

Hey, I'm talking about the budget Lenovo ones we have at school that I guess cost about $300. Thats what I was describing. However I'm sure Lenovo's higher end netbooks are a lot more powerful, advanced and expensive...

patashnik
Apr 22, 2011, 02:12 AM
This thread brings back memories about all those "I want my G5 PowerBook now!!!" threads. I don't ever want to go down that road again.

Knowing that Apple is working with Intel, and looking at Intel's roadmap - I say we're all better off.

bloodycape
Apr 22, 2011, 02:16 AM
Hey, I'm talking about the budget Lenovo ones we have at school that I guess cost about $300. Thats what I was describing. However I'm sure Lenovo's higher end netbooks are a lot more powerful, advanced and expensive...

You probably used the S10, or the 12in S12. Unless they are using the new Thinkpad X120e uses the AMD fusion cpu for about $400, which blows away the Atom cpu away.

mrkramer
Apr 22, 2011, 02:21 AM
Apple would have to reprogram OS X to run on the Ax SOC and 3rd party devs would have to do the same. Unless you want to emulate...


Well considering Apple had OS X programed for x86 since the beginning, I'm sure they have it compiled and working to some extent at least just as an option incase they were to need to switch. That said at this point in time I agree with you that Apple has nothing to gain and it would result in worse computers.

mrsir2009
Apr 22, 2011, 03:36 AM
You probably used the S10, or the 12in S12. Unless they are using the new Thinkpad X120e uses the AMD fusion cpu for about $400, which blows away the Atom cpu away.

Yeah it is this one except black: http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=4620

Ugggghh!

kx22
Apr 22, 2011, 08:21 AM
That means no Bootcamp, so no Windows?
Then no Mac for me! OSX is really nice and clean, but there are stuff that has to be done of the "OS of Massive".

Lord Appleseed
Apr 22, 2011, 08:44 AM
If they did, and they were comparable in power to Intel's CPUs, then I would like it because Macs could be cheaper then.
But to be honest, I seriously doubt this will ever happen outside the iOS-family.

dal20402
Apr 22, 2011, 11:11 AM
Not gonna happen. Thank goodness.

Windows compatibility is the best thing that ever happened to the Mac -- not because Windows is so great, but because most of the issues with switching just vanished overnight.

When I'm using my ancient PB G4 which can't run a VM, I sort of feel like one arm is cut off.

And on top of that, Intel has just been destroying its competition in the PC space.

merkinmuffley
Apr 22, 2011, 11:36 AM
Processor design is a very expensive operation, if Apple did this then they'd have to find manufacturing capacity to produce them, along with test and packaging. I spent the last 12 years of my career working at Intel in the MPG group, our processor design teams ranged from 1100 to 1800 people. These people cost money and with continuous pressure from buyers on the margins it's a constant battle to keep costs down and profits up. Apple is smart, let someone else deal with the costs and hassles of making processors.

Padraig
Apr 22, 2011, 11:50 AM
That means no Bootcamp, so no Windows?
Then no Mac for me! OSX is really nice and clean, but there are stuff that has to be done of the "OS of Massive".

Windows 8 will run on arm based devices.

ghostlyorb
Apr 22, 2011, 12:56 PM
mhm... I'm not sure. Couldn't be that bad..

ghostlyorb
Apr 22, 2011, 12:57 PM
Windows 8 will run on arm based devices.

Does that mean I have to wear something? :rolleyes:

Kissaragi
Apr 22, 2011, 12:58 PM
Dont you think intel are possibly a bit better at making cpus than apple?

alust2013
Apr 22, 2011, 01:07 PM
Windows 8 will run on arm based devices.

Where did you get that info?

Hellhammer
Apr 22, 2011, 01:09 PM
Where did you get that info?

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2011/jan11/01-05SOCsupport.mspx

bloodycape
Apr 22, 2011, 03:14 PM
Yeah it is this one except black: http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=4620

Ugggghh!

I know the feeling. I had an HP 1000 netbook(kind of wish I went with the Lenovo) to complement my MBP at the time and it was garbage(mainly due to the Atom cpu). They said performance was suppose to be on par with the G4 chip the in the iBook and Powerbook, but just browsing the net was turning into a hassle(linux os it came with didn't do it any help). So, if Apple went with like a dual core A5 cpu in the Air that would be a bad idea.

mrsir2009
Apr 22, 2011, 03:27 PM
I know the feeling. I had an HP 1000 netbook(kind of wish I went with the Lenovo) to complement my MBP at the time and it was garbage(mainly due to the Atom cpu). They said performance was suppose to be on par with the G4 chip the in the iBook and Powerbook, but just browsing the net was turning into a hassle(linux os it came with didn't do it any help). So, if Apple went with like a dual core A5 cpu in the Air that would be a bad idea.

That computer has a SSD, but its still ****-slow... The 11" MBA pwones its ass :D

DeaconGraves
Apr 22, 2011, 03:35 PM
No thanks. At least on the desktop/notebook side of computing, x86 is king. Apple made the switch 6 years ago and it would be fairly counterproductive of them to swtich again. They'd have to rework OS X like they did back in the day and developers would have extra work getting their apps to run on both platforms.


Windows 8 will run on arm based devices.

But, as far as I know, Microsoft is planning on using that only in tablets. They've decided to go a different route than Apple and Google and use the same platform that they use in their desktops. Whether or not their plan will work is a different story.

Hellhammer
Apr 22, 2011, 03:40 PM
But, as far as I know, Microsoft is planning on using that only in tablets. They've decided to go a different route than Apple and Google and use the same platform that they use in their desktops. Whether or not their plan will work is a different story.

Who knows. Right now ARM is only available for tablets and smart phones (and alike products). If you buy a real computer, it will have either Intel or AMD CPU which are both x86. However, NVidia's Denver might change this. It will provide the first ARM CPUs designed for normal computers and even servers.

bloodycape
Apr 22, 2011, 05:04 PM
That computer has a SSD, but its still ****-slow... The 11" MBA pwones its ass :D

Yeah, but most of the netbooks of the time had a slow SSD that generally maxed out at 16gb(with a few 32gb here and there) and aren't the good stuff we see on the market now.


I will admit the I would take a quad core nvidia(tegra 3?) tablet with at the very least n-trig duo pen support on an IPS display with 10 hour battery life(and keyboard options). I don't even really care about what OS it runs as long I can do full web browsing and note taking.

firewood
Apr 22, 2011, 06:07 PM
At the same clock rate, the ARM CPU in the A5 would run equivalent code about 1.5X to 3X slower than the current x86/C2D in the Air. That would put A5 around 2X to 4X slower than the a Core i5 or i7. So, just from a performance point of view, to be competitive, an ARM in a MacBook Air wouldn't work unless ARM and/or Apple figure out how to make the ARM CPU, in some hypothetical A6 ASIC, 2X to 4X faster than the current CPU in the A5 at the same processor clock rate and power envelope.

The other problem is memory size. The current ARM architecture can't address over 4GB of main memory, which the Air may need a couple hardware updates from now to stay competitive.

mrsir2009
Apr 23, 2011, 12:46 AM
Yeah, but most of the netbooks of the time had a slow SSD that generally maxed out at 16gb(with a few 32gb here and there) and aren't the good stuff we see on the market now.


I will admit the I would take a quad core nvidia(tegra 3?) tablet with at the very least n-trig duo pen support on an IPS display with 10 hour battery life(and keyboard options). I don't even really care about what OS it runs as long I can do full web browsing and note taking.

But it IS a netbook "on the market today". Its barely 1 year old and has a 160GB SSD.

RedReplicant
Apr 23, 2011, 01:31 AM
But it IS a netbook "on the market today". Its barely 1 year old and has a 160GB SSD.

The HP Mini 1000 was a 160gb HDD, not SSD. I'd hope the Air is faster considering it costs almost three times as much.
It's far older than a year, I had one in late 2008.

mrsir2009
Apr 23, 2011, 02:31 AM
The HP Mini 1000 was a 160gb HDD, not SSD. I'd hope the Air is faster considering it costs almost three times as much.
It's far older than a year, I had one in late 2008.

I'm not talking about the HP Mini 1000, I'm talking about the Lenovo S10.

RedReplicant
Apr 23, 2011, 02:40 AM
I'm not talking about the HP Mini 1000, I'm talking about the Lenovo S10.

I reed gud :D

bloodycape
Apr 23, 2011, 02:53 AM
I'm not talking about the HP Mini 1000, I'm talking about the Lenovo S10.

Well when I was looking at the S10 that was back in 2008 when it was 160gb hdd or a 16gb ssd. Haven't kept up with that one so it could be using the newer Atom, and SSD could be now at 160gb, but still its a slow ssd as the purpose is to keep the price low.

alust2013
Apr 23, 2011, 03:01 AM
Who knows. Right now ARM is only available for tablets and smart phones (and alike products). If you buy a real computer, it will have either Intel or AMD CPU which are both x86. However, NVidia's Denver might change this. It will provide the first ARM CPUs designed for normal computers and even servers.

If that does happen, I can't see it getting too far. x86 has been around for a long time, and I'm doubting ARM is just going to bust in and take the market away. AMD has been around for years, and it has yet to catch up to Intel, so it seems that ARM is a little late to the game, unless it can provide a massive improvement in some aspect of performance. Plus, devs wouldn't be too happy about that, so it seems like it would be ill-supported and only be good for a very small percentage of the market.

mrsir2009
Apr 23, 2011, 03:03 PM
Well when I was looking at the S10 that was back in 2008 when it was 160gb hdd or a 16gb ssd. Haven't kept up with that one so it could be using the newer Atom, and SSD could be now at 160gb, but still its a slow ssd as the purpose is to keep the price low.

Lol thats why PC users say SSDs don't make your computer much faster... Most of the cheep SSDs in netbooks and stuff are crap :D

firewood
Apr 23, 2011, 03:51 PM
If that does happen, I can't see it getting too far. x86 has been around for a long time, and I'm doubting ARM is just going to bust in and take the market away. AMD has been around for years, and it has yet to catch up to Intel, so it seems that ARM is a little late to the game, unless it can provide a massive improvement in some aspect of performance. Plus, devs wouldn't be too happy about that, so it seems like it would be ill-supported and only be good for a very small percentage of the market.

The cost of energy is already larger than the cost of CPUs in data centers (reports are that they already eat more than 1% of the national power grid). Anything that would decrease energy use in data centers, in server transactions per watt-hour, would bust in and take market away. For linux (and Mac OS X) servers, support for ARM is a quick recompile away... trivial for any competent IT devs.

I have a little ARM linux server running already. No fan. Runs on about 4 watts.

RedReplicant
Apr 23, 2011, 08:13 PM
What hardware is it running? That's pretty interesting :)

ZombieZakk
Apr 23, 2011, 08:18 PM
Let me introduce you to a little company called Lenovo. See, they make this laptop called Thinkpad X220, that gets an estimated 8 hours with a 6-cell, 15 hours with a 9-cell, and 23 hours with a 6+Slice Battery Combination.

you do realize there is a hell of a size difference with the the lenovo+ a slice battery compared to an air.

wordoflife
Apr 23, 2011, 08:55 PM
Intel probably is best in class for what it does. Do not fix what is not broken.

old-wiz
Apr 24, 2011, 09:46 AM
To make it economical, you have to build the chips in very large quantities. Intel produces chips for many different computer mfgrs, so they make a huge quantity which lowers the cost per chip.

testcss
Jun 10, 2011, 07:29 PM
I hope I'm right about the A-whatever processors now that the new Macbook Air computers are coming out. By the way, A9 supports quad core processors with up to 2 Ghz. This chip only takes 1.9 Watts! Compared to the Sandy Bridge processors, it uses less power and is only marginally slower. You all have valid points about reworking the OS, Windows compatibility, speed, etc. but those problems are easily solved. Windows 8 is built for ARM processors, 64-bit designs are on the way, and ARM can only get faster at the low Ghz it is at now. The A15 Design coming in 2012 ,Link, (http://www.arm.com/products/processors/cortex-a/cortex-a15.php) has 16 cores at 2.5 Ghz. With Apple at the reigns we could see some of the best chip designs ever!

KnightWRX
Jun 10, 2011, 08:16 PM
Marginally slower ? Mhz myth much ? The Cortex A9 is much slower than the Sandy Bridge architecture. Don't be fooled because the "Mhz look the same!". Clock speed means nothing, it's all about instructions per clock.

Seriously, ARM anything right now is much slower than x86.

MacHamster68
Jun 10, 2011, 08:39 PM
why would bootcamp not be possible on a arm based Mac?

windows 8 will run on arm based computers
http://venturebeat.com/2011/01/05/microsoft-shows-cool-demos-of-arm-based-computers-running-windows/

and look at that little thingy its a arm based computer (prototype)
Open software (Ubuntu, Iceweasel, KOffice, Python)
http://www.raspberrypi.org/pcb.jpg

and here the spec of that little bugger

700MHz ARM11
128MB of SDRAM
OpenGL ES 2.0
1080p3D H.264 high-profile decode
Composite and HDMI video output
USB 2.0
SD/MMC/SDIO memory card slot
General-purpose I/O
just plug in a leyboard and mouse and ethernet or wireless adapter to the usb port and a hdmi tv on the other end
price will be $25 or £15 when it hits the market running ubuntu

all you need for emailing, surfing and watching films

Cheffy Dave
Jun 10, 2011, 08:41 PM
It's not what if, but more like when:cool:

KnightWRX
Jun 10, 2011, 08:42 PM
windows 8 will run on arm based computers

With no Windows software compatibility to show for it. Windows 8 on ARM will be a tablet product, made to run tablet software. I doubt many vendors will bother to port from x86 Windows.

AppleCat
Jun 10, 2011, 10:36 PM
The whole software incompatibility thing is an issue diminishing by the day. It's not 1985 anymore where loads of code was written in assembly and was directly hardware dependant.

Porting software today is more and more turning into a matter of just selecting the other target and building from source. Apple will make sure it will be smooth, and developers will have their popular softwares running natively quickly. And in any case Apple did a great job with Rosetta last time, I'm sure there won't be much software that falls through the cracks.

They won't switch until they're getting adequate performance, and once they have that and throw out the damn DVD drive (because admit it, spinning plastic discs around at high speed and shooting laser beams is pretty arcane and wayback stuff that needs to go) and replace all that volume with battery, people will be in love again.

Sjhonny
Jun 11, 2011, 04:58 AM
Maybe we'll see an ARM based mac with the arrival of the A8 ... Right now only the quad core via (?) from nVidia (cortex-A15 based) has proven to out perform a certain atom cpu (not high end) in both raw processing power as power consumption, while running honeycomb on a tablet.

A cortex-A15 derivate is probably what we'll see in the A6. It comes, not even by a long shot close to the performance of the most basic Sandy Bridge model... (except maybe the mobile Celeron, but I haven't seen any benchmarks for those yet, nor do they even support turbo! (the whole point of sandy bridge in my opinion ...) ). The A15 products will arrive at around the same time as the ivy-bridge cpu's ... so make up your mind yourself ... There'll be no reason at all to put ARM in mac's the coming two to three years. The performance just isn't there, nor the hardware support (does ARM15 designs even support things like pci(-x)?). And now we're not even talking about the hassle of virtualization or recompiling of all existing intel/universal binaries (not only OS-wise) ...

MacHamster68
Jun 11, 2011, 08:00 AM
you all seem to forget that the big majority of Mac users have bought Mac's that are overkill for what they do on them for some who just look around their emails and surf in the interweb even a iphone would be overkill already in terms of processor performance

KnightWRX
Jun 11, 2011, 08:26 AM
you all seem to forget that the big majority of Mac users have bought Mac's that are overkill for what they do on them for some who just look around their emails and surf in the interweb even a iphone would be overkill already in terms of processor performance

Maybe, but there's a little matter of compatibility in switching to ARM. ;)

It's not just a performance problem. x86 and x86_64 code would have to be run through a Rosetta like piece of emulation software and of course, emulation slows things down. So now you have a processor that is 4x less powerful than your Intel equivalent running code at half it's normal speed. You just took a 8x performance hit.

I hope you weren't planning on playing games on this thing.

testcss
Jun 11, 2011, 11:08 AM
Maybe, but there's a little matter of compatibility in switching to ARM. ;)

It's not just a performance problem. x86 and x86_64 code would have to be run through a Rosetta like piece of emulation software and of course, emulation slows things down. So now you have a processor that is 4x less powerful than your Intel equivalent running code at half it's normal speed. You just took a 8x performance hit.

I hope you weren't planning on playing games on this thing.

Maybe the average consumer doesn't want to play high-powered games on their computer. The web browsing performance is more than adequate on these ARM chips and I'm comparing the MBA's processor to the ARM chips. A quad 2 Ghz ARM chip is probably about as powerful as the 1.4 Ghz dual core. If you rad the article on Apple Testing A-whatever chips in their MBA, you'd know they were impressed by the ARM chip's performance. Say you put an ARM-15 8 Core 2.5 Ghz chip in a MBA. That performance would be equivalent on your magical 8 times scale to about an 1.2 ghz i5 (4 Threads). The ARM chip would still use less energy and have a similar or cheaper price when it is released soon. You aren't seeing the ARM's ability to leverage processing across many small cores.

KnightWRX
Jun 11, 2011, 11:33 AM
A quad 2 Ghz ARM chip is probably about as powerful as the 1.4 Ghz dual core.

No, it's not. That's your mistake. Most software isn't coded in a way to take advantage of mass-parallelism the way synthetic benchmarks can. Unless you get your instruction-per-clock count up, your ARM processor just isn't up to par with an x86 chip.

And again, a x86 web browser, running emulated on a 4x slower ARM chip just isn't going to be able to push the HMTL5 Canvas stuff and the HTML5 video decoding required for a modern website, throwing us back to compatiblity. You'll have to wait for your browser vendor to port to ARM, if they ever decide to.

And since most of the browsers these days are a mish-mash of in-house code and outside libraries, the vendors will have to wait for those libraries to port to ARM too.. And those libraries might have dependencies they need to wait for too... and on. And on.

It gives us the whole PPC -> x86 thing, except now the new architecture is slower than the new one and can't run emulation well enough for the few years until the dust has settled.

If you want an ARM computer that badly, I suggest you look at open source software to run on it. Most of it is written so that it is at least source compatible with dozens of CPU architectures and will compile right up if no binaries are available. Linux can run on about anything under the sun and most of the major projects will build fine on most of those architectures.

Primejimbo
Jun 11, 2011, 12:30 PM
If they did, and they were comparable in power to Intel's CPUs, then I would like it because Macs could be cheaper then.


Yea, because it's Intel that makes Mac's so expensive.... :rolleyes:

Like others said, if it's not broken, don't fix it.

pgiguere1
Jun 12, 2011, 01:18 AM
Seriously, external RAM?