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View Full Version : Where's this 970GX?


gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 11:01 AM
I have never heard that there is a PowerPC 970GX processor in existence, yet this article (http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/library/pa-unrollav1/?ca=dgr-lnxw01AltiVecP1) by IBM says:

The only processors currently supporting AltiVec are the G4 and G5. The G4 (including model numbers 7400 and 7410) and G4+ (7450 and 7455) processors are made by Motorola. (There are more models than just the ones listed here, but these are the most widely discussed.) The G5 chips include the IBM 970, 970FX, and 970GX; these are essentially POWER4™ cores with an AltiVec unit bolted on. So far, only PowerPC® processors have had AltiVec support, not the POWER™ line. If you want to buy "a computer with AltiVec," Apple's Mac line is your most likely option. For evaluation boards and custom designs, however, you can go with any of the many vendors who do development kits based on either the G4 or G5.

I remember some rumors about this GX, but this seems to claim there is one. The article was published Mar. 1. 2005.

Chaszmyr
Mar 7, 2005, 11:04 AM
There is a 970GX processor in existence, we just don't know anything about it because it hasn't made it into any Macs yet, and may not any time soon (if ever). These technology companies, especially those who work with Apple, are pretty tight-lipped. :cool:

gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 11:29 AM
But why even mention it if it isn't used and isn't going to be used by anyone? (PowerBook G5s next Tuesday :p )

Lacero
Mar 7, 2005, 11:30 AM
It's probably a low power version destined for the powerbooks

Chaszmyr
Mar 7, 2005, 11:32 AM
IBM develops chips for their own products, as well as for other companies than Apple. However, they did specifically refer to the 970GX as a G5, which is Apple's name for it, not IBM's. This clearly indicates that it is being developed for Apple, but Apple is not using it yet. Chances are, it just isn't ready for mass production yet, perfecting chips takes time.

PlaceofDis
Mar 7, 2005, 11:38 AM
IBM develops chips for their own products, as well as for other companies than Apple. However, they did specifically refer to the 970GX as a G5, which is Apple's name for it, not IBM's. This clearly indicates that it is being developed for Apple, but Apple is not using it yet. Chances are, it just isn't ready for mass production yet, perfecting chips takes time.

exactly, i just wonder where in apple's line this chip will be used, since we know nothing of it, is it low power for the powerbooks, or something else entirely?

Fredstar
Mar 7, 2005, 11:49 AM
"Like Antares, the 970GX will initially come in at speeds around 3GHz and is said to feature 1MB of L2 cache, double what the 970FX processor sports. Like the 970FX, however, the processor will not have any L3 cache. "

Perhaps the updated Powermacs for announcement at WWDC, with 1mb L2 cache and upto 3ghz it sounds awesome

gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 11:49 AM
Rumor from November 2004:

Think Secret sheds some light on an upcoming processor revision to the 970 line dubbed the AntaresSP, or PowerPC 970GX. This single-core variant of the 970MP will initially come in at speeds around 3GHz and is said to feature 1MB of L2 cache, double what the 970FX processor sports. Like the 970FX, however, the processor will not have any L3 cache. Availability hints are in the early part of 2005.

Chaszmyr
Mar 7, 2005, 11:52 AM
With this new compiled information (I've read it all before, but my memory is fallible), I'll offer my input.

I am HOPING that the Antares (970MP) and 970GX will be released at the same time, as different models, rather than the 970GX being used as a stepping stone to the 970MP.

gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 12:00 PM
Woops, maybe I should have included the next line, too:

Availability of the 970MP (multiple core version) is not yet known.

I would also like to hope that the 970MP is ready, but if it is, wouldn't it also be included in the Altivec article by IBM?

Chaszmyr
Mar 7, 2005, 12:02 PM
I would also like to hope that the 970MP is ready, but if it is, wouldn't it also be included in the Altivec article by IBM?


Don't rain on my parade, a dual core PowerMac is the #1 thing I'm looking forward to in life right now lol

gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 12:21 PM
About the author:Peter Seebach uses vector processing a lot, and is personally able to cook up to three eggs at once, making him something of an expert in the field. You can contact Peter at developerworks@seebs.plethora.net.

It doesn't look like he's working at IBM, so maybe he doesn't know anything more than we do ... or maybe he does? Maybe someone should send him a mail and ask him :D

Fredstar
Mar 7, 2005, 02:35 PM
According to the editor of the artical:
"I don't actually know; I saw it listed in one of the articles I was reading for research, so I included it on the list."
So i don't think he knows any more than we do :P

gekko513
Mar 7, 2005, 03:10 PM
According to the editor of the artical:
"I don't actually know; I saw it listed in one of the articles I was reading for research, so I included it on the list."
So i don't think he knows any more than we do :P
That depends on what kind of article he was reading for research. It could be an IBM internal article!

Some_Big_Spoon
Mar 7, 2005, 03:14 PM
Low power is good all around. It's obviously good for mobile computing (better battery life, cooler running) but it's also great for desktops too (makes the possibility of an even thinner/lighter iMac). Also think in terms of reliability and durability.. if the processor/board/etc. runs cooler, there's less wear and tear, meaning that things are less likely to break or burn out. The POWER series is meant for not only heavy workloads, but also to be extremely reliable.. critical computing for sure. (i.e., not windows ;)

They're working on it, and info about the GX is bound to surface in IBM docs before it surfaces in Macs. Nice to know that there's progress, both in terms of clock speed, but also cache size. L3 would be nice (where's my L3 in the G4 PB????)

Here's the thing, Apple wants these chips like yesterday, so the minute they're ready to roll, they'll be putting them in their desktops, and hopefully laptops. They need the momentum.

ziwi
Mar 7, 2005, 03:43 PM
Or...would they just wait until WWDC and announce then - if so that would rot - the lines have waited long enough - if it is ready then put them out for sale...don't wait for the shining spotlight moment a few months from now...

Chaszmyr
Mar 8, 2005, 02:13 PM
Our apologies!
The original version of this article contained an erroneous reference to a "970GX." We apologize for any confusion this may have caused.
--Editors

This now appears on IBM's page