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View Full Version : Some Tidbits: Motherboard, Enclosure, LCDs




MacRumors
Mar 11, 2003, 12:47 AM
MacWhispers posts (http://www.envestco2.com/macwhispers/archives/000047.php) some intruiging tidbits regarding previous supply chain rumors.

Of most interest are that the previously reported new motherboard designs sport single and dual processor variants as well as are "larger, longer, and narrower", while the 5x7x1inch enclosure does have an opening on one entire face.



backspinner
Mar 11, 2003, 01:53 AM
First, no word is given it is indeed for Apple. But second, a new motherboard sporting hypertransport or pci-x or whatever would make smaller motherboards possible.

MacBandit
Mar 11, 2003, 01:54 AM
This could very well be for the G4 7457s.

jholzner
Mar 11, 2003, 02:55 AM
Originally posted by MacBandit
This could very well be for the G4 7457s.

Or the 970 from IBM!! w00t!

mangoman
Mar 11, 2003, 04:40 AM
Hey.... About this enclosure thingie. Let's start an APPLE PDA rumor!

(slaps forehead, causing self to fall backwards in chair. skull splits open on floor.)

nickmcghie
Mar 11, 2003, 05:06 AM
hmmm.. i know exactly what the enclosure thing is.. but i can't tell you guys

let's just say it's not quite as exciting as what a lot of people are thinking.. don't want you guys to get your hopes up too high!

davy the bunny
Mar 11, 2003, 07:14 AM
nah, I agree with mangoman let's start a PDA rumor to see how far it goes.

so nick. . . just how not exciting is this thing?

mangoman
Mar 11, 2003, 07:20 AM
Yeah, Nick. Don't wag the carrot to lead the horse. The horse might get pissed and throw your ass into a ditch. 'Fess up, boy!

:D

ncbill
Mar 11, 2003, 07:30 AM
An iPod docking station for the home stereo?

[i]i know exactly what the enclosure thing is

mangoman
Mar 11, 2003, 07:32 AM
A rectilinear toilet for small, square butts?

jettredmont
Mar 11, 2003, 08:08 AM
Taking the rumors as they come:

1) 5' Firewire (400 or 800? check the connector being put on the end ...)/USB (1.x?2.0? can't know cause the cable's the same!) cable ... This sounds odd, and at first glance like a pretty stupid idea for Apple as most devices use one or the other, not both. Might be a smart idea for things like video cams that use FW for transfering video and (oddly IMHO) USB for transfering "still pictures". But that's pretty much the entire realm of devices that use both connections potentially simultaneously, which IMHO leaves this as a responsibility of the device maker, not the computer maker. Especially as the rumor says the "other" end of this consists of PCB-board leads, not FW/USB connectors ... Just sounds really odd. One possibility would be a monitor with FW/USB hubs built in which will connect to non-ADC (standard RGB or DVI) devices ... as nice as ADC is, no one else is using it and it's an annoying incompatibility point, so this might be a rethinking ... or maybe I'm reading too much into it.

2) I still question if these two new motherboards are really for PowerMacs as originally posted. "larger, longer, narrower" might still fit in the PM case, or it could be designed for the larger XServe case (not sure how the current MB's compare). Good that we have "confirmation" that one is for single-proc and one for dual-proc.

3) The 5"x7" enclosure has an opening on one face. Seems odd that this wasn't mentioned before (as details like a sliding door for a port bay were mentioned), but interesting nonetheless. It's quite a broad array of possibilities for this device (from a Waccom tablet input device type of thing to a new-market-segment iPod big brother to a tablet PC idea to a photo display device to a remote control to ... whatever)

4) "Very large" LCD panel ... high resolution, but not QUXGA (3840x2400) resolution ... can we expect higher or lower pixel density? The 22" QUXGA flat panel display runs arouns $9500 direct, and Apple's not known for market-leading pricing on their LCDs, so I'd expect a similarly dense flat panel which is "very large" (presumably larger than the current 23"?) would be quite expensive. If "very large" is in comparison to 17" displays, and Apple is thinking of introducing new 19" (hardly "very large") or 21-22" panel with ultra-dense resolution, one would have to wonder about product placement (and kiss the newly-cheap 20" and 23" panels goodbye?) I think that the Apple line of LCDs is fairly complete right now, except perhaps for an "across the room" sized low-density device (ie, a HDTV monitor, 40" diagonal range ...) But then, LCD monitors aren't the most interesting thing to me (I have problems with color fidelity across the field of view that still haven't been addressed by current technology, so I'm not looking to replace my Trinitron with a four-times-as-expensive LCD any time soon), so my opinion here is probably not the most important one.

Overall, I still question how strong the links to Apple really are here. Are these just devices that are being manufactured at plants where Apple has also manufactured devices, or is there a more concrete link with Apple itself? Might be something Jack himself can't even answer .. I mean, you ask a factory worker "You doing any neat stuff for Apple?" and you are fairly likely to get an account of the neatest thing the guy has seen, with the "Apple" connection a bit more exagerated than the actual facts would support. I mean, I did temp work in a Bose factory once, and every neat new gadget Bose announced had at least 1000 parts attributed to it by various assembly lines, when in actuality maybe one out of ten of those parts actually went into the neat new device (I mean, a stereo with four speaker cones likely doesn't use ten different speaker cones from different lines :) ) while the rest went into more mundane applications. Unless you're talking to someone with a fairly complete first-hand "big picture" (which is generally the kind of person that is either fired or no longer contracted with when they talk about such things), factory-floor speculation is often less reliable than a wholesale blind guess.

Which, of course, is probably why we're reading this on Page 2.

jettredmont
Mar 11, 2003, 08:12 AM
Originally posted by ncbill
An iPod docking station for the home stereo?

Nah, too big for the iPod to fit in, and too small for the home stereo to fit in ... Unless it had its own hard drive et al ... and even then, with one side being "mostly" open, the hole's just not the right size for a slim, trim iPod to do anything but get lost in.

mangoman
Mar 11, 2003, 08:12 AM
(Yawnnnn....) Anybody heard about those new, matte-black PowerPods that are being released next Tuesday?

moosecat
Mar 11, 2003, 08:45 AM
Originally posted by jettredmont
Overall, I still question how strong the links to Apple really are here. Are these just devices that are being manufactured at plants where Apple has also manufactured devices, or is there a more concrete link with Apple itself?

This supply-side information that Macwhispers provides is really interesting and I enjoy reading it, but I wonder the same thing.

The other thing I wonder about the Macwhispers stuff is -- if it is accurate -- how long Apple will let its suppliers blab so carelessly about what they're building for Apple. Knowing Apple's attitude toward its own intellectual property, I'd expect them to come down like a hammer on suppliers who spill the beans like this. (It's not like it would be a mystery to Apple which suppliers are talking.)

theFly
Mar 11, 2003, 10:02 AM
Originally posted by jettredmont
1) 5' Firewire (400 or 800? check the connector being put on the end ...)/USB (1.x?2.0? can't know cause the cable's the same!) cable ... This sounds odd, and at first glance like a pretty stupid idea for Apple as most devices use one or the other, not both. Might be a smart idea for things like video cams that use FW for transfering video and (oddly IMHO) USB for transfering "still pictures". But that's pretty much the entire realm of devices that use both connections potentially simultaneously, which IMHO leaves this as a responsibility of the device maker, not the computer maker. Especially as the rumor says the "other" end of this consists of PCB-board leads, not FW/USB connectors ... Just sounds really odd. One possibility would be a monitor with FW/USB hubs built in which will connect to non-ADC (standard RGB or DVI) devices ... as nice as ADC is, no one else is using it and it's an annoying incompatibility point, so this might be a rethinking ... or maybe I'm reading too much into it.

It's been mentioned in another forum site that what makes most sense for this cable is a keyboard that has both USB and Firewire connections. Saves Apple from mucking up their designs with front connectors, if you think about it.

theFly

cubist
Mar 11, 2003, 11:24 AM
Originally posted by MacBandit
This could very well be for the G4 7457s.

Once again: The 7457 is pin-compatible with the current 7455. No motherboard change is required.

As for the "one entire face", it might be an end face. As for an external superdrive, or an iPod dock, or something like that. (That 5' cable could be for this thingie too.)

MikeMo
Mar 11, 2003, 11:24 AM
Has everyone ruled out the possibility of an Apple TiVo? It seems to me that a 5x7x1 form factor would be just about right, and a combination usb/firewire cable would be just right, too. USB to control the box from your Mac, firewire to transfer the video to/from the Mac.

mangoman
Mar 11, 2003, 11:28 AM
Hurl insults all ya want. I won't see 'em here -- I'm unsubscribing from this thread, and all other iPod threads... for now.

(in best superhero voice:)
Just... can't.. take it... any....<gasp>... longer!

Over and out,

mangoman

MacBandit
Mar 11, 2003, 11:29 AM
Originally posted by MikeMo
Has everyone ruled out the possibility of an Apple TiVo? It seems to me that a 5x7x1 form factor would be just about right, and a combination usb/firewire cable would be just right, too. USB to control the box from your Mac, firewire to transfer the video to/from the Mac.

In my oppinion the form factor is too small. Also there would be no advantage of using such a small size since Tivos tend to produce a lot of heat due to constant drive running and processing. Also something of that size would not fit the form factor of any entertainment center.

5x7x1 sounds to me like a subnotebook. Maybe someone hasn't notice the hinges yet. That would explain a slot all the way down one side.

MacBandit
Mar 11, 2003, 11:32 AM
Originally posted by mangoman
Hurl insults all ya want. I won't see 'em here -- I'm unsubscribing from this thread, and all other iPod threads... for now.

(in best superhero voice:)
Just... can't.. take it... any....<gasp>... longer!

Over and out,

mangoman

I agree. It's all pure TRIPE!!!

MikeMo
Mar 11, 2003, 12:17 PM
Originally posted by MacBandit
In my oppinion the form factor is too small. Also there would be no advantage of using such a small size since Tivos tend to produce a lot of heat due to constant drive running and processing. Also something of that size would not fit the form factor of any entertainment center.

But what if the hard drive is in the Mac? You'd get less heat, a cheaper system (saves the drive and electronics), and ties it tightly to the Mac. That's why you have the firewire.

cubist
Mar 11, 2003, 12:28 PM
Originally posted by mangoman
Hurl insults all ya want. I won't see 'em here -- I'm unsubscribing from this thread, and all other iPod threads... for now.

(in best superhero voice:)
Just... can't.. take it... any....<gasp>... longer!

Over and out,

mangoman

Did I miss something here, or are you posting in the wrong thread? You asked whether we'd heard about "matte-black MangoPods", or something like that -- to which bait nobody rose -- and then say you are unsubscribing from this thread. This isn't (or wasn't) an iPod thread...:confused:

Are you alleging that this rather large box (about the size of a VCR tape) is a MangoPod? Oh sorry, a PangoPod.

Escher
Mar 11, 2003, 01:22 PM
Originally posted by MacBandit
5x7x1 sounds to me like a subnotebook. Maybe someone hasn't notice the hinges yet. That would explain a slot all the way down one side.

Oooh! A subnotebook. Me likey! I love my iBook/500. I like the 12-inch PowerBook even more. But they're both still too big to accompany me everywhere. A 5x7x1 sub-PowerBook would rock my world.

Escher

moosecat
Mar 11, 2003, 01:50 PM
Originally posted by MacBandit
5x7x1 sounds to me like a subnotebook. Maybe someone hasn't notice the hinges yet. That would explain a slot all the way down one side.

Hmm... A notebook or subnotebook is made of two separate plastic enclosures, linked by a hinge. Unless this is a radically new design, it would make no sense for the same enclosure to include both the screen and all of the ports. These would be on separately fabricated parts of the casing.

Unless, of course, it is a tablet design ....

boobers
Mar 11, 2003, 04:06 PM
i got a nice big bucket of drool here and it has Steve Jobs written all over it. Steve? you want my drool? I'll trade it for a nice tablet or sub notebook..something that i can watch the osbournes on while i am at the gym on the treadmill.
Is that a fair trade?

nagromme
Mar 11, 2003, 04:28 PM
Here's my only guess on the dual USB/Firewire cable: it's for the iPod.

Think how much the iPod would sell if it supported USB (2.0 hopefully) and not just Firewire? (And Apple could still claim that FW is faster--even FW400 tests faster then USB 2.0.)

If my guess is right, then the other end of that cable will get a custom connector that may look like Firewire but is actually a custom connector for new iPods, and carries USB as well.

This cable might only be bundled with Windows iPods--but pre-Firewire iMacs, bronze PowerBooks, and iBooks all have USB and would be a market as well.

Why not just make a custom cable just for the USB, and ship two cables with the iPod? Maybe this is cheaper, or just simpler for the user.

Macpoops
Mar 11, 2003, 06:10 PM
Anyone think this new cable would be for the Keyboard. Just like it is now but it would also have a firewire port in it. That way you wouldn't have to fumble around to the back of the machine to get to the ports or buy a hub. Makes sense to me i know i think thats a pain in the ass.

jettredmont
Mar 11, 2003, 07:39 PM
Originally posted by Macpoops
Anyone think this new cable would be for the Keyboard. Just like it is now but it would also have a firewire port in it. That way you wouldn't have to fumble around to the back of the machine to get to the ports or buy a hub. Makes sense to me i know i think thats a pain in the ass.

Makes sense, but only on the iMac ... on the PowerMac line, the keyboard in theory plugs into the ADC-connected monitor, right? I say in theory because my Macs are hooked up to a non-Apple monitor through a USB KVM these days, but before I needed the KVM I always plugged that little keyboard line into the side of the Apple monitor ...

Plus, a 5' keyboard cable? I mean, that's nice and all, but 90% of the time that'll just get in the way!

It also, of course, contradicts the prsistent BlueTooth mouse/keyboard rumors (although I hope the BT keyboard rumor proves false ... that's a security nightmare!)

Sounds more plausible than most ideas though I suppose ...

Macpoops
Mar 11, 2003, 11:37 PM
Maybe Recharge the bluetooth keyboard and mouse with firewire???????????? Could happen. more of a waste of a firewire port but hey the ipod travel adapters have it

MacBandit
Mar 12, 2003, 01:25 AM
5x7x1 could also work as a mouse pad for a wireless mouse. The mouse pad itself could be connected to the keyboard or the computer and inductively charge the mouse thusly requiring no wires, no how, never (on the mouse that is).

DakotaGuy
Mar 12, 2003, 06:40 AM
Originally posted by ncbill
An iPod docking station for the home stereo?

Now I do LOVE that idea. I would buy an iPod if they came up with something like that. It would power the iPod and hook up to the extra inputs on the receiver.

-hh
Mar 12, 2003, 01:15 PM
Originally posted by Macrumors

Of most interest are that the previously reported new motherboard designs sport single and dual processor variants as well as are "larger, longer, and narrower"...

Is it "larger, longer, and narrower", as in the form factor of a keyboard?

Or is it "larger, longer, and narrower", as in the form factor of a widescreen 17" LCD?

Keeping in mind how Apple's always been willing to play with case design, perhaps its time for the "the keyboard is the PC" design.

Or an iMac that has no need for a base...its just the LCD monitor/CPU, and a wireless keyboard/mouse...


Just highly speculative brainstorming...time will tell.


-hh

pk22901
Mar 12, 2003, 03:39 PM
I've said it before, but it'd still be great if Apple delivered something integrating thse capabiltites in the enclosure.

- Full OS X running on a 30GB+ Disk w/ 256 mb RAM.

- wireless 811.b, firewire, modem, USB

- CDMA phone

- bluetoothed headset or integrated mike & speaker used for cell phone, note recording, DVDs, MP3s.


- TiVo functionality w/ hookup to video/firewire for recording/playback and playback to the small integrated display.

--------------------------

How'd would it be used?

Multi-tasking as in taking a call, spontaneously choosing to record it, then link the recording (or parts of it) to datebook item(s)....

Or running a business mtg via a Keynote presentation/agenda on the integrated or external display or TV. Print via rendezvous wireless. Fax via cell phone! Mtg can be recorded with notes being generated via voice recognition (v2 feature!).

If Apple made this, they could charge $1200 for the 1st six months, and they could sell it for $800 after a year and rake in the profits at that level too.

Maybe not this year, but if Apple doesn't build this, someone else will within a few years.:p

BigJayhawk
Mar 12, 2003, 07:59 PM
And a Partridge in a Pear Tree!!!

(What, no ALL WHEEL DRIVE??? Does this thing defrost itself and clean itself too?)

jethroted
Mar 13, 2003, 04:50 PM
Well I made this and posted it on another thread, but you guys might like it. It is made of card paper, and it is the same 5x7x1 dimensions as stated in the rumor. A little "prototype" of my own.

MacBandit
Mar 13, 2003, 07:09 PM
Originally posted by jethroted
Well I made this and posted it on another thread, but you guys might like it. It is made of card paper, and it is the same 5x7x1 dimensions as stated in the rumor. A little "prototype" of my own.

Really there is no need for a power cord. It could definitely be battery powered. Other than that great work though I doubt that Apple will ever do a panel computer or any other device that requires writing on the screen as the primary input. That is based on Steve Jobs saying, "who wants to have to write everything by hand". Maybe it will have a really really really good voice to text software.

jethroted
Mar 13, 2003, 07:45 PM
Originally posted by MacBandit
Really there is no need for a power cord. It could definitely be battery powered. Other than that great work though I doubt that Apple will ever do a panel computer or any other device that requires writing on the screen as the primary input. That is based on Steve Jobs saying, "who wants to have to write everything by hand". Maybe it will have a really really really good voice to text software.

Um, that is firewire, not a power cable. I don't think we would see a pda with a power cord. I'm not crazy. Also I don't think it will be much of an input device. I think it will be a media centre. Playing movies/music and going online.

MacBandit
Mar 14, 2003, 12:39 AM
Originally posted by jethroted
Um, that is firewire, not a power cable. I don't think we would see a pda with a power cord. I'm not crazy. Also I don't think it will be much of an input device. I think it will be a media centre. Playing movies/music and going online.


Okay, if you say so. I'll just use my imaginationa and... yes... I'm starting to see it.... that power cord is magically becoming a firewire cord..... yes I got it now, it does provide power at least.

jethroted
Mar 14, 2003, 08:35 AM
Originally posted by MacBandit
Okay, if you say so. I'll just use my imaginationa and... yes... I'm starting to see it.... that power cord is magically becoming a firewire cord..... yes I got it now, it does provide power at least.

It really is firewire. If you can't tell the difference between a power cord and firewire, then you have not spent much time with mac computers. Anyone else here can see what it is. Just ask.

-hh
Mar 14, 2003, 08:47 AM
Originally posted by MacBandit
Okay, if you say so. I'll just use my imaginationa and... yes... I'm starting to see it.... that power cord is magically becoming a firewire cord..... yes I got it now, it does provide power at least.

Nice picture, BTW...

In any event, this is along the lines of what I was thinking, if the 5x7x1 "device" is a tablet, although with one caveat, one question, and one observation:

The caveat: shouldn't an ultra-portable, ultra-interfacible system have some sort of "docking station" type of interface, either in addition to, or in lieu of the standard set of I/O plugs?

The question: could a single firewire interface plug perform this function?

The observation: contrary to what I just said above, with Airport & Bluetooth, all of the Base Station interfacing can probably be done wirelessly, right? This would imply that a "Cradle" would only need wires to provide recharging.


My perspective is that I'd be very much interested in a "Real Computer" sized mini-tablet that I can come back to my desk, drop the 5x7 into a PALM-like cradle that serves to interface it with my "Base Station" setup, which then provides a bigger display, keyboard & mouse, DVD-R/CD-RW, etc, etc.


-hh

MacBandit
Mar 14, 2003, 09:59 AM
Originally posted by jethroted
It really is firewire. If you can't tell the difference between a power cord and firewire, then you have not spent much time with mac computers. Anyone else here can see what it is. Just ask.

I have had 5 Apple computers since 1993.

Performa 600
PowerMac 7100
PowerMac 8500
B/W G3 400
Dual/GHz/DDR

I also have a firewire cable setting right in front of me and the end is about the size of a usb cable end. Why is the one on your cable nearly the size of a standard power cord?

jethroted
Mar 14, 2003, 03:38 PM
Originally posted by MacBandit
I have had 5 Apple computers since 1993.

Performa 600
PowerMac 7100
PowerMac 8500
B/W G3 400
Dual/GHz/DDR

I also have a firewire cable setting right in front of me and the end is about the size of a usb cable end. Why is the one on your cable nearly the size of a standard power cord?

Because firewire has 2 sizes. Also you have to remember this is not exactly to scale. I threw this together in photoshop, and while the dimensions are 7x5x1, I had to shrink down the features on the side panel to fit. So they seem smaller than normal.

BigJayhawk
Mar 14, 2003, 03:46 PM
You two are so funny. First off, don't make inflamatory remarks unless you KNOW you are right (and you DON'T unless you've seen every Firewire cable ever made). Guess what? There are two types of Firewire cords (now at least 3 with FW800).

One is the standard cable and the one with the smaller end plugs into cameras and the like to allow a smaller plug on the smaller peripheral. (Sony calls Firewire iLink and they VERY OFTEN use the smaller connections on their equipment.)

jethroted
Mar 14, 2003, 04:16 PM
Originally posted by BigJayhawk
You two are so funny. First off, don't make inflamatory remarks unless you KNOW you are right (and you DON'T unless you've seen every Firewire cable ever made). Guess what? There are two types of Firewire cords (now at least 3 with FW800).

One is the standard cable and the one with the smaller end plugs into cameras and the like to allow a smaller plug on the smaller peripheral. (Sony calls Firewire iLink and they VERY OFTEN use the smaller connections on their equipment.)

Yes there are 3, but 800 just came out and no one I know uses it, so I didn't want to complicate things any further.

BigJayhawk
Mar 14, 2003, 04:25 PM
That post was more for MacBandit. I didn't mean you forgot FW800. The "you two are funny" goes along with the old adage "it takes two to argue" but all you were doing was stating the obvious about your picture.

Oh well. We REALLY need to get back to that release something new EVERY WEEK as we are all getting TOO BORED. Can you imagine if we held, say, General Motors, to the standard we're trying to get out of APPLE?

OK, GM, come out with a new vehicle about every WEEK or we'll start discussing possible future vehicles right down to the possible shape of the SPARK PLUG WIRES!!!

We at MR get so funny sometimes.

MacBandit
Mar 15, 2003, 02:26 AM
Originally posted by BigJayhawk
You two are so funny. First off, don't make inflamatory remarks unless you KNOW you are right (and you DON'T unless you've seen every Firewire cable ever made). Guess what? There are two types of Firewire cords (now at least 3 with FW800).

One is the standard cable and the one with the smaller end plugs into cameras and the like to allow a smaller plug on the smaller peripheral. (Sony calls Firewire iLink and they VERY OFTEN use the smaller connections on their equipment.)


Like duh. I know what all the plug designs look like. Don't make inflamatory remarks about someone unless you know there background.:p

MacBandit
Mar 15, 2003, 02:27 AM
Originally posted by jethroted
Because firewire has 2 sizes. Also you have to remember this is not exactly to scale. I threw this together in photoshop, and while the dimensions are 7x5x1, I had to shrink down the features on the side panel to fit. So they seem smaller than normal.

It's got to be the the sized down connections that threw me then. The cable end from your pic looks damn near like the Apple power cord end for my monitor. It looks big and nearly square with rounded corners.

nagromme
Mar 17, 2003, 04:17 PM
FYI, an 800x600 display would fit nicely in a 5x7x1" device.

At 8" disagonal, the display would measure 4.8x6.4". It would be 125 DPI, comapred to 107 in the 12" laptops.

Or 640x480 would be 100 DPI at 8". Either size would be usable, and already supported by OS X.

Slightly smaller than 8" would fit even better.

silvergunuk
Mar 17, 2003, 08:30 PM
Maybe it could be the infamous apple digital camera..the side with an open face could be for a picture viewer...