PDA

View Full Version : Pro Mac Photo Summary


arn
Jul 21, 2002, 11:08 PM
MacRumors received a copy of this PDF (http://www.macrumors.com/forums/attachment.php3?postid=109539) on Friday, Jul 19, 2002 claiming to be a diagram of an upcoming PowerMac G4 design.

While trying to verify the information in the PDF, the author posted a thread (http://www.macrumors.com/forums/showthread.php3?threadid=8083) with the PDF, while MacBidouille posted (http://translate.google.com/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.macbidouille.com%2Fniouzcontenu.php%3Fdate%3D2002-07-21&langpair=fr%7Cen&hl=en&ie=ISO-8859-1&prev=%2Flanguage_tools) actual photos which corresponded with the images found in the PDF.

Meanwhile, a MacRumors source confirmed the authenticity of the enclosure, and Apple Legal requested the removal of these images hosted on MacRumors.

Update: The case appears to match various specs that were rumored (http://www.macrumors.com/pages/2002/07/20020707124222.shtml) to be on Prototype cases including white speaker, front mounted headphone jack, 4x512MB RAM, new motherboard, bays for two optical drives.

dsamsa
Jul 21, 2002, 11:15 PM
I guess this confirms the authenticity of the photo! Damn, I was wishing that was a prototype. I hope Apple doesn't use that ugly front part... But if it comes with a G5, WHO CARES?!?!:D

drastik
Jul 21, 2002, 11:15 PM
well, well, that seems pretty straightforward, just hope it has DDR;)

Backtothemac
Jul 21, 2002, 11:22 PM
Well, I guess we know that it has some authenticity. Don't know if it was a prototype, or if it is the one. Time will tell. If it is the one, do you think Steve will switch it?

TechKid
Jul 21, 2002, 11:32 PM
with such a big heat sink and emphasis on air flow, do you think they're just gonna overclock the current G4 chips to squeeze more life out of 'em?

Thoughts?

teabgs
Jul 21, 2002, 11:36 PM
is it getting hot in here?


Well, there certainly are a bunch of rumors flying around...

The consumers are restless.....Apple is waiting....

we saw what may be the case....but what will be inside? who knows? That is the question....


But the bigger question is: WHEN?????

drastik
Jul 21, 2002, 11:37 PM
yeah, I think the heat sink has something to do with the chip, either overclocking or just a new chip all together, one that runs hotter but faster.

Stike
Jul 21, 2002, 11:49 PM
Originally posted by teabgs
is it getting hot in here?

Well, there certainly are a bunch of rumors flying around...

The consumers are restless.....Apple is waiting....

we saw what may be the case....but what will be inside? who knows? That is the question....

But the bigger question is: WHEN?????

Ok, let´s sum up those rumors once more:

1. The eBay Mobo is very possibly for real. It has DDR Slots and a mysterious connector that is supposed to be Firewire2

2. Apple Legal pulled the picture of the Prototype Case and the pdf describing it indicates a mucho faster/hotter CPU. Aquacooling would probably be too expensive.

3. The PMacs are highly anticipated and it would be a great "coincidence" for them to appear parallel to Jaguar, say around Aug.20th...

4. :D I´ve had a ViSiOn of a snow-white El Capitan-PMac feat. a "G5" on the side :D :D :D

But this may also belong to MWSF...

iH8Quark
Jul 21, 2002, 11:52 PM
This thing was SWEET!

This is what we need. I'd buy like 6....or maybe one....but if I had the money, I'd buy 6. :D

buffsldr
Jul 21, 2002, 11:52 PM
Memo to Apple:

Go ahead and pull the rumor site's press passes for the trade shows. Apparently we already know what is going to happen before the show anyway.

On a different note, does Time lose their press pass, now that they have joined the ranks of a rumor site? J/K But seriously, if you hang around this site long enough, occassionally, you get a little gem like this.

Arn, this last story almost makes me want to buy a mug.

teabgs
Jul 21, 2002, 11:59 PM
Originally posted by buffsldr
Memo to Apple:

Go ahead and pull the rumor site's press passes for the trade shows. Apparently we already know what is going to happen before the show anyway.

On a different note, does Time lose their press pass, now that they have joined the ranks of a rumor site? J/K But seriously, if you hang around this site long enough, occassionally, you get a little gem like this.

Arn, this last story almost makes me want to buy a mug.

ALMOST?!?! to each his own. You dont have to buy a mug to help support the site you know. You could just donate some $$$ or buy something else from the store...it all helps arn out. I dont want this thread to turn into a recruiting thing but remember where you're getting your inside info from people ;)

Please dont reply to this...stick to the rumors...they're a much better topic of conversation, sorry to have sidetracked...


Anyone feel like the new towers are being announced soon? Not necessarily shipping right away, but announced...?

buffsldr
Jul 22, 2002, 12:05 AM
Originally posted by teabgs


ALMOST?!?! to each his own. You dont have to buy a mug to help support the site you know. You could just donate some $$$ or buy something else from the store...it all helps arn out. I dont want this thread to turn into a recruiting thing but remember where you're getting your inside info from people ;)

Please dont reply to this...stick to the rumors...they're a much better topic of conversation, sorry to have sidetracked...



Yes, teabgs, it almost does. Relax, fella.

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 12:06 AM
Originally posted by teabgs


Anyone feel like the new towers are being announced soon? Not necessarily shipping right away, but announced...?

I say, as stated above, announced and shipping when Jaguar makes its debut...

Hemingray
Jul 22, 2002, 12:15 AM
Okay, this is the type of dirt that makes me forget the whole .Mac and Jaguar price crap and just remember how fun it is to be where the rumors be. :) I've sure missed this!

Okay, so now... where's the specs? Wherever these pics/diagrams came from, the guy didn't include the specs? That's a little odd... or am I missing something here? :confused:

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 12:23 AM
Originally posted by Hemingray
Okay, this is the type of dirt that makes me forget the whole .Mac and Jaguar price crap and just remember how fun it is to be where the rumors be. :) I've sure missed this!

Okay, so now... where's the specs? Wherever these pics/diagrams came from, the guy didn't include the specs? That's a little odd... or am I missing something here? :confused:

No you didn't miss anything. He busted outta here before dropping the spec bomb. Thank groovebuster for that one. ;) :p

Although the french site did say that the SDRAM was, in fact, DDR SDRAM (although the google translation was junk, and translated it to GDR) :rolleyes:

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 12:32 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark


No you didn't miss anything. He busted outta here before dropping the spec bomb. Thank groovebuster for that one. ;) :p

Although the french site did say that the SDRAM was, in fact, DDR SDRAM (although the google translation was junk, and translated it to GDR) :rolleyes:

:D Darn Groovebuster :D But hey, Apple pulled the material from the french site too! Now this was some hot info!

MacRumorSkeptic
Jul 22, 2002, 12:41 AM
Its probably all fake. Before apple legal had the french site take the pics down I translated it. macbidouille.com says it got the pictures from spymac.com while spymac says it got them from macbidouille.com

I wouldnt be surprised if its a pretty well done photoshop job, or someone actually took the time to build a fake prototype from an existing G4 throwing plastic wrap around it to look legit. Remember, apple legal supposedly ordered the iwalk photos and movies to be taken down as well.

Hemingray
Jul 22, 2002, 12:42 AM
Originally posted by Stike
But hey, Apple pulled the material from the french site too! Now this was some hot info!

:eek: Damn that was fast...

And as for the whole DDR thing, I was wondering what the hell GDR was...

sergeantmudd
Jul 22, 2002, 12:44 AM
That copyright date really worries me. I see no logically reason that a prototype box would have any parts from 2001. I am wondering what the graphics card in it was. I assume Apple would use the most powerful cards available when it ships these out, and if it is indeed a GeForce 3 or something, we would know that it is from 2001. All we have now are the pictures to comb over.

Oh yeah, it's not a GeForce2 MX....
Also, what's that green card across the bottom of the center photo, it's huge.
And why isn't this thing red like the eBay board?

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 12:48 AM
Originally posted by Hemingray


:eek: Damn that was fast... looks like I DLed the pics just in time! :cool: Apple Legal, you can take down the sources, but you can't take down what's on my hard drive. :D

And as for the whole DDR thing, I was wondering what the hell GDR was...

Hemingray Braveheart-Style: They can´t take our freedom! (to download)

:D GDR = Giga Data Rate :D 1000 MHz RAM !;)

King Cobra
Jul 22, 2002, 12:51 AM
GDR has been discussed already. It's the french version of DDR.

As for translations, I still recommend Babelfish. Google just doesn't cut it.

>Remember, apple legal supposedly ordered the iwalk photos and movies to be taken down as well.

Great point. But, remember, we haven't heard of much news, if any, about the details of a PDA, from news sites or what have you. I think these were just to keep people from trying to give people ideas and steal Apple's spotlight IF they come out with a PDA. But the PowerMac is different, since you have rumors of all sorts going about constantly.

G4scott
Jul 22, 2002, 12:53 AM
ooh, the rumors, the intrigue, the mystery, the suspense, the ketchup...

There is one thing that you have to remember, though. Apple cases always look kinda funny when you first see them. When I first saw the quicksilver (not those rumor pics, but the ones on Apple's site) I wasn't really impressed, until I saw the thing for real...

Just remember guys, it's what's on the inside that counts the most, even though as Mac users, we take great pride in how good our Macs look...

rekras
Jul 22, 2002, 01:00 AM
i dissagree, apple simply would not release a machine that ugly. i think the posters of the image cut and pasted that apple cease and dissist document on their site to make it look more authentic, that g4 wasnt even symetrical and totally goes against every design standard the apple design team has.

Grokgod
Jul 22, 2002, 01:04 AM
2001 makes perfect sense.

You guys still don't get it, do you?

Thats how LONG APPLE has been sitting on DDRam!

Thats how long in advance APPLE has to plan out.

Imagine APPLE sitting on DDRam all these years while Wintel just cranks them out!

How does that make you feel, imagine all the money they made holding that tech back from us, makes you think doesnt it?:eek:

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:06 AM
Originally posted by MacRumorSkeptic Its probably all fake. Before apple legal had the french site take the pics down I translated it. macbidouille.com says it got the pictures from spymac.com while spymac says it got them from macbidouille.com

Probably because neither site wants to bear the full brunt of the Apple legal dept. :D :D

I don't think the tower looks that bad. But then again, I'm not buying it for the looks. :rolleyes:

And to the people who are saying that Apple would not release something that ugly etc. Remember the Flower Power and Dalmatian iMacs and the Key Lime iBooks? Ugh.

teabgs
Jul 22, 2002, 01:07 AM
Originally posted by rekras
i dissagree, apple simply would not release a machine that ugly. i think the posters of the image cut and pasted that apple cease and dissist document on their site to make it look more authentic, that g4 wasnt even symetrical and totally goes against every design standard the apple design team has.

what about the new iMac???? eh?


think about it....new designs man, that's apple

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 01:10 AM
Originally posted by rekras
i dissagree, apple simply would not release a machine that ugly. i think the posters of the image cut and pasted that apple cease and dissist document on their site to make it look more authentic, that g4 wasnt even symetrical and totally goes against every design standard the apple design team has.

You can think what you want... but "I think it's ugly" is not evidence against it's existance.

There were numerous articles on the web about how leaked images of the Apple Cube were fake/photoshopped and poorly designed. They ended up being true.

There were countless posts about how the current quicksilver design were "obviously photoshoped"... and they were real.

Oh... and another common thread between the Cube images and Quicksilver images were that Apple Legal also requested those images pulled.

arn

J@ffa
Jul 22, 2002, 01:11 AM
http://www.itsthebomb.com/story.php?storyid=2002/7/21/8

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:12 AM
Boy...with all those "turbine" fans and air vents i bet you could test aircraft inside that case.

Bet it sounds like helicopter. That one's going under the desk.

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 01:12 AM
Originally posted by MacRumorSkeptic
Its probably all fake. Before apple legal had the french site take the pics down I translated it. macbidouille.com says it got the pictures from spymac.com while spymac says it got them from macbidouille.com

Actually, MacBidouille credited Spymac for the PDF. While Spymac credited the images to MacBidouille.

arn

Grokgod
Jul 22, 2002, 01:18 AM
What I am curious about is HOW exactly can APPLE demand that anyone remove anything from a website. Let alone a picture ?

What kind of legal action coul they use?

uhh is it illegal to post a picture from whatever source.

I dont understand the legal aspects of this, but there are a lot of things that people do on the internet that others dont like, but cant do much legally!

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:20 AM
Originally posted by J@ffa
http://www.itsthebomb.com/story.php?storyid=2002/7/21/8

These specs seem like EXACTLY what everyone here is dying to get their hands on. BUT, they don't match up with the case. The case has no FireWire 2, and there are no ports on the front of the case.

don't get me wrong. I would buy one of these in a second, but somebody is bluffing here.

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:22 AM
Originally posted by Grokgod
What I am curious about is HOW exactly can APPLE demand that anyone remove anything from a website. Let alone a picture ?

What kind of legal action coul they use?

uhh is it illegal to post a picture from whatever source.

I dont understand the legal aspects of this, but there are a lot of things that people do on the internet that others dont like, but cant do much legally!

Here you go, straight from the horse's mouth :


This letter is one behalf of our customer, APPLE Computer, Inc ("APPLE"), and report to the public postings and display of photographs and files purporting to Be depictions of future APPLE products ("Material") one your web site At .

Pursuant to APPLE internal policies, this standard of Material is not permitted to Be disclosed gold published to any unauthorized let us persons. By continuing to publish, display, gold link to the Material, you and your company may Be disclosing APPLE confidential business information and/or APPLE trade secret and also may Be held liable for infringing Apple' S rights under various federal and state laws.

Therefore, we request that you cease and desist from displaying the Material one all Web sites and servers under your control, including any hyperlinks to other hirings where the Material may Be available.

Because this is has matter we take very seriously, we ask that you immediately confirm in writing that you cuts removed the Material from your web site.

Sincerely,

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:23 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark
These specs seem like EXACTLY what everyone here is dying to get their hands on. BUT, they don't match up with the case. The case has no FireWire 2, and there are no ports on the front of the case.

How can we be sure about the FireWire 2?

whitegold
Jul 22, 2002, 01:25 AM
Personally I think it looks genuine. I see no reason to believe it's faked.

In any case, there are two possibilities to apples lack of new Desktop Pro announcements and products.

One is they have it ready to go and are wanting to spring it on people. I doubt that very much. Though I'm surprised that it's been so hard. Given the architecture of the Xserve is so similar (potentially) to a desktop G4 I'm surprised we haven't seen announcements of a xserve specked desktop machine. DDR, etc.

The other possibility is that they're working hard at it. Apple can't afford their past (and heavily criticised) strategy of announcing new products, months before actually shipping.

At least we should be able to be confident that when Apple DO finally announce something (G5, G4 on DDR, etc) it will be coming SOON. Hell, otherwise they'd just announce it now, and release it when they can be bothered.

One thing I think we can all agree on. Apple needs to do something with the desktop pro market beyond minor speed bumps, and they need to do it soon.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:26 AM
Originally posted by hitman


How can we be sure about the FireWire 2?

FireWire 2 has a different connector. It's shaped more like an I-Beam. Look it up at the IEE1394 association's website.

It looks curiously close to the "mystery port" on the eBay board.

D*I*S_Frontman
Jul 22, 2002, 01:27 AM
Like those original photos, sometimes people don't get a good taste of something before it's gone. Like a good Milwaukee bratwurst. In fact, I just learned of a new vintage of Old World mustard that looks interesting. Check out this .pdf if you are curious.

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 01:28 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark


FireWire 2 has a different connector. It's shaped more like an I-Beam. Look it up at the IEE1394 association's website.

It looks curiously close to the "mystery port" on the eBay board.

Here are images of the ports in question (Firewire2 and eBay board)

http://www.macrumors.com/pages/2002/05/20020502174828.shtml

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:28 AM
Originally posted by D*I*S_Frontman
Like those original photos, sometimes people don't get a good taste of something before it's gone. Like a good Milwaukee bratwurst. In fact, I just learned of a new vintage of Old World mustard that looks interesting. Check out this .pdf if you are curious.

WTF???

you lost me there. I sense sarcasm, no? ;)

chuckzee
Jul 22, 2002, 01:30 AM
What on earth would need a seven pound cooling unit?



We are looking at support for quads here folks. :D

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:33 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark


FireWire 2 has a different connector. It's shaped more like an I-Beam. Look it up at the IEE1394 association's website.

It looks curiously close to the "mystery port" on the eBay board.

FireWire and FireWire 2 on the same board? Doesn't that make one or the other port redundant?

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:33 AM
Originally posted by chuckzee
What on earth would need a seven pound cooling unit?



We are looking at support for quads here folks. :D

Keep in mind that the manufacturing cost of a single G4 chip is around $250 US. That would make the chips alone about $1000. Add the rest of this new-fangled technology *hopes*, and we're looking at a price increase.

but i guess that's never stopped them before. :rolleyes:

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:34 AM
Originally posted by chuckzee
What on earth would need a seven pound cooling unit?



We are looking at support for quads here folks. :D

Is it just the heat sink or an actually (liquid) cooling unit? Are we looking at fans actually positioned on top of the CPU?

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 01:37 AM
Originally posted by hitman


FireWire and FireWire 2 on the same board? Doesn't that make one or the other port redundant?

FireWire 2 is supposed to be backwards compatible. BUT the connectors do look different. Perhaps the backwards compatibility simply means you can run FW1 and 2 off the same chipset on the motherboard, with different connectors coming out of the machine.

maybe? pure speculation.

big
Jul 22, 2002, 01:42 AM
what's the color of the motherboard say? how about that huge green PCI card sticking up http://www.itsthebomb.com/gallery/powermacs_july_2002/pages/innards_jpg.htm

and while I'm at it, it says G5 ready? could oyu pop out the processor and plug in a G5 zif?

and note the handle IS still there!

the cd drives look chrome, white speaker, aluminum intake, headphone jack in front, white body (I'm suprised looking at the tiBook & Xserve) to work with the rest of the Mac products (note changes in iPod were not drastic)

but no monitor power supply? I guess they figure everyone has gone to the flat panel (very thought out prank, someone is not hiding in closets on this one).

this sumes up all the rumors for several months...I will bet this thing is sooooo it! maybe a slight modification, but I bet they call a press conference in august to say...

"sign up now boys, they're rolling out"!

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 01:42 AM
damn, what is it look like? Anyone saved the image? is it the new casing? any spec on it?

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 01:46 AM
And here we have another pic of some nVidia Chip - is it a true pic of the Apple Mobo or just another PC mobo?

chuckzee
Jul 22, 2002, 01:48 AM
Keep in mind that the manufacturing cost of a single G4 chip is around $250 US. That would make the chips alone about $1000. Add the rest of this new-fangled technology *hopes*, and we're looking at a price increase.

So just add another $1000 to the price of todays most expensive model. not much more..cause as you see the "new" technology (DDR; 333 system frontside bus, etc has been around for a while)


Imagine, Quad g4's running Jaguar at 1.4ghz--for about 4-5 grand. :eek:

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 01:49 AM
1.6 ghz?? That can't be true...if the G4 actually reach 1.6 ghz...Steve would have told us at the MWNY...There is no way he kept it low profile...He would make it a big news to increase sell for the Powermac...and even increase the imac speed...impossible!!

G4scott
Jul 22, 2002, 01:50 AM
I have a question... Do the dual processor daughter cards connect to the mobo using one zif socket, or two, or a completely different connection... If they use zif sockets, Apple could make a mobo that supports 4 processors, but ship it with 2 or 1 standard, and sell the processor modules for $300-400 each... That would make sense, if it works, so lower end pro users can get an affordable machine with the ability to upgrade as they go, and the super-pro users where money isn't an issue would be able to get a fully configured G4...

Oh, and another question (I wasn't very good in conversions)- would 7kg be more plausible for the weight of the heat sink? Aluminum is a rather light material, and I can't imagine a heat sink weighing 7 pounds... they make bike frames from aluminum that weigh less than that... Of course, with their description of how it's held on, it seems pretty steady, and heavy... we've got major cooling power here...

big
Jul 22, 2002, 01:55 AM
>1.6 ghz?? That can't be true

I bet it happens...but a 7lb heat sink (as seen in the pdf) is so not true, and the only thing that makes me question the authenticity

job
Jul 22, 2002, 01:59 AM
So do we know if the heat sink by itself is 7 lbs or is it the entire cooling system?

Also, what about that funky nVidia chip? It looks just like that n2 board they were developing.

big
Jul 22, 2002, 02:00 AM
Stike---I've never seen an apple board with slots not running the same direction, plus the brown slot color is odd, and not seen since the beige macs

(that sure looks like a processor slot ont he left, though not an apple zif as I've seen em, though there is a handle there)

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 02:00 AM
~Stike
I think i read that this image is a PR image that nVidea was using. It came from spymac, no?


~kaneda
MWNY was geared to show off the operating system. It was for domestic consumption. To get regular "mom and pop" customers excited about the OS. (There's been no other advertising for OS X, so my guess is, that's why they devote Macworld to the OS. It gets the most press).

dongmin
Jul 22, 2002, 02:02 AM
This is beyond anything the rumor sites have been talking about. If it's true, I'd say the 1 month wait was worth it.

from itsthebomb.com (credited to Spymac):

[Admin Edit: These are not claimed specs to this machine... instead these are specs posted a few weeks ago in an unrelated post by an unknown author... and are not related to this current rumor ]

Processor

Dual PowerPC G4 processors(1.2ghz,1.4ghz,1.6ghz)

Velocity Engine vector processing unit

Full 128-bit internal memory data paths

Powerful floating-point unit supporting single-cycle, double-precision calculations

Data stream prefetching operations supporting four simultaneous 32-bit data streams

512k on-chip L2 cache running at processor speed
2MB DDR SRAM L3 cache per processor

333MHz system frontside bus supporting over 2.7GB/s data throughput

Memory

512MB or 1024MB of 333MHz PC2700 DDR SDRAM with up to 5.4GB/s throughput (dual memory controllers 2.7 for each channel)

Four DIMM slots supporting up to 2GB of DDR SDRAM using the following:
— 128MB or 256MB DIMMs (64-bit wide, 128Mb technology)

— 512MB DIMMs (64-bit-wide, 256Mb technology)

I/O connections

AGP Pro 110watt universal slot supports graphics cards running at 8x,4x,2x
Six full-length 64-bit, 66MHz PCI slots supports 32-bit or 64-bit 3.3V PCI cards running at 33MHz respectively

One 10/100/1000BASE-T (Gigabit) RJ-45 Ethernet connectors, on logic board
One 56k v.92 voice/fax modem RJ-11 teleco connector,on logic board
Ready for wireless networking: Built-in antennas and card slot for optional 54Mbps AirPort Card; IEEE 802.11g compliant

Four 800Mb/s FireWire2 ports (three on back panel;one on front panel; 15W total power) (4)

Four USB2.0 ports 12 Mbs-480 Mb/s each (three on back panel;one on front panel)
Graphics support
Nvidia Geforce4Ti 4200 AGP graphics card with 64MB of DDR SDRAM graphics ADC and DVi connector dual display support for extended desktop and video mirroring modes (standard across entire lineup)

Optional ATI RADEON R250 AGP graphics card with 128MB of DDR SDRAM and ADC,DVI, and S-video connectors; dual display support, support for digital and analog resolutions up to 2048 by 1536 pixels

Storage

Two external 3.5 bays with independent 133MB/s buses for up to 240GB of internal storage using hot-plug Apple Drive Modules, available in the following capacities:
— 60GB 7200-rpm Ultra ATA/133 with 8MB disk cache
— 120GB 7200-rpm Ultra ATA/133 with 8MB disk cache

One bay filled with 60GB 7200-rpm Apple Drive Module (standard configurations)

Support for reading SMART data from Apple Drive Modules for early failure notification
Two open internal 3.5 bays(for internal IDE harddrives)
Two external 5.25 bay one filled with tray-loading 40x20x40x CDR/RW drive with front-panel eject button
Optional Superdrive Dvd-R 4x,Dvd-rom 24x,CDR/RW 24x12x40x
Optional Ultra160 SCSI PCI card for connecting to external storage and backup devices.
Optional Ultra ATA 133 RAID card (supports RAID 0,1,01 )

Audio
Built-in speaker
Apple speaker minijack for connection to Apple Pro Speakers
Optional Apple Pro Speakers
Headphone/line out minijack
Support for external third-party FireWire and USB digital audio peripherals such as microphones, speakers, and MIDI devices

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 02:04 AM
Originally posted by hitman
So do we know if the heat sink by itself is 7 lbs or is it the entire cooling system?

Also, what about that funky nVidia chip? It looks just like that n2 board they were developing.

BTW I found that pic in connection to that topic on Spymac. Would Apple go that far to incorporate a NV Chip onboard??:confused:

Maybe a new coprocessor for Quartz Extreme :confused: :eek: :rolleyes: :D

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:05 AM
What I'm wondering, and I think someone else already mentioned this :

The specs list mentions FW/USB ports on the front of the case. The supposed case pics have no ports on the front. What gives?

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 02:06 AM
but 1.6 ghz is a huge jump for Apple...the biggest processor speed jumps ever...and they just gonna release it like it is a small tiny jump!

I think 1.4 ghz is more believable...then 1.6...

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:06 AM
Originally posted by Stike


BTW I found that pic in connection to that topic on Spymac. Would Apple go that far to incorporate a NV Chip onboard??:confused:

Maybe a new coprocessor for Quartz Extreme :confused: :eek: :rolleyes: :D

Could it be that they are using technology from the n2 board to kick the pro line into high gear?

It would be nice if Jaguar could have it's own GPU. :eek: :D

big
Jul 22, 2002, 02:07 AM
>So do we know if the heat sink by itself is 7 lbs or is it the entire cooling system?

maybe apple wil go with a belt driven system, complete with radiator & belts (much like you auto)
ha ha

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:08 AM
Originally posted by kaneda
but 1.6 ghz is a huge jump for Apple...the biggest processor speed jumps ever...and they just gonna release it like it is a small tiny jump!

I think 1.4 ghz is more believable...then 1.6...

Well, we don't exactly know if :

a) the speeds are accurate
b) when (if ever) they will release a tower like this
c)or the possibility that Apple may blow us all away with a tower like this. :)

3rdpath
Jul 22, 2002, 02:08 AM
Originally posted by hitman
What I'm wondering, and I think someone else already mentioned this :

The specs list mentions FW/USB ports on the front of the case. The supposed case pics have no ports on the front. What gives?

any chance the fw/usb ports are behind one of the flipdown doors..aesthetically, it would be nicer...just a thought from someone who knows zilch about computer design.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 02:08 AM
wait wait wait.....before we go and set ourselves up for a huge disaster when the actual towers are released, we should look at past info and decide what is credible here and what is a pure pipe dream.

but it sounds good so far! :D

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:10 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark
wait wait wait.....before we go and set ourselves up for a huge disaster when the actual towers are released, we should look at past info and decide what is credible here and what is a pure pipe dream.

but it sounds good so far! :D

Well at least we have some substancial rumors to debate.

It's especially refreshing after reading all those "I hate Apple, .mac, the towers, etc. I'm going to Wintel" threads. :rolleyes:

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 02:11 AM
Specs?

Ignore these specs... no one associated with this "leak" posted these specs... the only place these "specs" appeared are on one site. It's likely complete speculation.

arn

big
Jul 22, 2002, 02:11 AM
>we should look at past info and decide what is credible here and what is a pure pipe dream

I started that already...look back

big
Jul 22, 2002, 02:14 AM
>"I hate Apple, .mac, the towers, etc. I'm going to Wintel"

let em, that's why they will do such a speed bump, to get back on track

though I'm dissapointed in apple about the lateness of their release. bed now, going, before anyone else posts...


agggg stop posting, now I have to read more

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 02:16 AM
I think we're setting ourselves for a big dissappointment...No way!! I don't believe it!

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:20 AM
Originally posted by kaneda
I think we're setting ourselves for a big dissappointment...No way!! I don't believe it!

Either way it goes it is still fun to debate. :)

dongmin
Jul 22, 2002, 02:26 AM
I'm realizing now that the specs on itsthebomb.com don't match up with the pics on macbidoulle. I'm inclined to believe the picts more than the specs list.

Looking at the pics, there are only 4 PCI slots, not 6 as in the specs list.

The pdf posted by AppleP58 lists 2 sets of 2 HD bays. This corroborates what the specs list says about storage: 2 hot-plug drive modules (external?) and 2 additional bays. This would rock.

Also both sources report two 5.25" bays which everyone is now expecting.

J@ffa
Jul 22, 2002, 02:29 AM
Just to clear this up - I got the specs from a post here - I make no claims for their authenticity; for all I know, they could be completely made up. For anyone who hasn't seen them yet, pictures of:

• the external casing
• the innards
• the motherboard
• a diagram of the casing

I have mirrored them here: http://www.itsthebomb.com/gallery/powermacs_july_2002/

And the specs can be found here: http://www.itsthebomb.com/story.php?storyid=2002/7/21/8

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:30 AM
I don't think the specs are accurate at all. It seems to have too many discrepancies with the pics, no front FW/USB ports etc.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 02:31 AM
Originally posted by dongmin
2 hot-plug drive modules

why would they do that on a desktop? that's a server config. i've gotta call horse-puckey on that one.

Besides, that would make 4 external bay. Which means the tower would have to look similar in config to the one posted on page 1 of this thread.

job
Jul 22, 2002, 02:42 AM
What happened to the pic of the nVidia chip?

pianojoe
Jul 22, 2002, 02:57 AM
Originally posted by Stike


Hemingray Braveheart-Style: They can´t take our freedom! (to download)

:D GDR = Giga Data Rate :D 1000 MHz RAM !;)

This is crap. DDR is Deutsche Demokratische Republik which is German for German Democratic Republic (GDR), the former east German state. Google doesn't read too much of the french text's context, so it's just guessing wrong on that one.

On the other hand, I'd just LOVE your interpretation to be true.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 02:59 AM
okay, i opened the PDF in illustrator, and found that there is, indeed, a white box covering up the main headline text.

I removed the white box, picture follows.

Of particular note is that the fonts in this document are Garamond condensed (as opposed to Apple Garamond), and Arial (as opposed to Helvetica). Also, they were originally encoded on a Windows machine. Do you think Apple designs Macs on Windows machines? Seems fishy, but that's just me.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 03:01 AM
oops...actually, am i allowed to post that itsy-bitsy piece?

It's just text. Are there laws against posting text? :confused:

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 03:05 AM
The PDF is not an Apple document.

The PDF was created by someone who had presumably seen the case.

arn

job
Jul 22, 2002, 03:06 AM
wtf is turbine cooling?

is apple planning on achieving lift with this thing? ;)

bah that pdf is probably just a fake.

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 03:09 AM
Notice that this enclosure closely matches the specs from the Prototype enclosures rumored a couple of weeks ago

http://www.macrumors.com/pages/2002/07/20020707124222.shtml

According to a source, there are currently up to six (6) enclosures undergoing internal testing. Features vary and it's unknown which features may make it to the final hardware... but some features include: white speaker, front mounted headphone jack, 4x512MB RAM, new motherboard, bays for two optical drives.

job
Jul 22, 2002, 03:12 AM
I was wondering about the pdf though. It said 4096MB Ram. A GB DIMM*4? Seems a bit high......

pianojoe
Jul 22, 2002, 03:13 AM
Originally posted by G4scott


Oh, and another question (I wasn't very good in conversions)- would 7kg be more plausible for the weight of the heat sink? Aluminum is a rather light material, and I can't imagine a heat sink weighing 7 pounds... they make bike frames from aluminum that weigh less than that...

I just wanted to point out that 7 pounds is less than 7kg. About 50%.

Stike
Jul 22, 2002, 03:13 AM
Originally posted by pianojoe


This is crap. DDR is Deutsche Demokratische Republik which is German for German Democratic Republic (GDR), the former east German state. Google doesn't read too much of the french text's context, so it's just guessing wrong on that one.

On the other hand, I'd just LOVE your interpretation to be true.

Oh, another Mannheimer here ;)
Ok, you´re right, but my interpretation may become reality.. say... one year? :eek: :cool: :D

Scottgfx
Jul 22, 2002, 03:17 AM
Originally posted by Stike
And here we have another pic of some nVidia Chip - is it a true pic of the Apple Mobo or just another PC mobo?

The photo in your post is of an Athlon based nForce MB. Note the location of the memory, it's not in parallel with the PCI slots. I doubt that Apple would go back to ZIF sockets. Also note that the AGP and co-located PCI are on the wrong side. The new systems appear to have reversed everything.

Finally, I don't thing Apple would EVER use those funky yellow connectors. :)

I did notice the chip on the Apple board is at an angle like the nForce northbridge. I doubt that a chip's angle has much to do with what it's for or what the bus technology is. I do hope Apple has Hypertransport though. :)

My guess is that the Apple system photos were taken somewhere on the production line. It doesn't have it's battery installed yet! Where do you suppose that is done? I'm guessing, at burn-in time?

(edit: I just figured out that the angled chip on the Apple system photo is the G4 processor card. I couldn't tell at first that it was above the MB. I still am curious as to what that card in the fourth PCI slot is!)

job
Jul 22, 2002, 03:20 AM
Originally posted by arn
According to a source, there are currently up to six (6) enclosures undergoing internal testing. Features vary and it's unknown which features may make it to the final hardware... but some features include: white speaker, front mounted headphone jack, 4x512MB RAM, new motherboard, bays for two optical drives.

I wonder if what we are seeing here is just a hash of all the tower rumors.

The case pics might be from one prototype, the specs (if they are legit) from another, etc.

We could be looking at different prototypes, thinking they are the same one.

iH8Quark
Jul 22, 2002, 03:22 AM
I'm willing to bet the following:

The case is real. But we won't see it in it's present (pictured) incarnation. This is a test box. The insides are the real deal, but the box is a tester. The drive bays are metal because Apple has no drive bay setup / config in their parts drawer that matches this setup. My guess is that the entire case will be brushed metal. This thing is...sadly...ugh-lee.

The PDF is a fake. It was drawn by an amateur who saw the case pictures, and the PDF was made after the fact. Reasons: Windows file format and fonts, and a ripoff version of Apple Garamond. Oh, and another thing, NOBODY ON EARTH uses Corel Draw professionally. Other things make me wonder. 7Lb heat sync and vertical drives??? Don't think so. Also, why would the case include support or SCSI? Not even the Xserve uses SCSI. (I know, Ultra 160 for HD editing, but then why have the drives vertical?).

My best guess is that the image posted on page 1 of this thread is closer to what we'll see than the box in question.

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 03:23 AM
Originally posted by hitman

The case pics might be from one prototype, the specs (if they are legit) from another, etc.

specs are NOT legit.

arn

arn
Jul 22, 2002, 03:24 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark

The PDF is a fake. It was drawn by an amateur who saw the case pictures, and the PDF was made after the fact.

No one ever claimed the PDF was an official Apple Document.

The PDF was created from someone who had presumably seen the enclosure pictured. He admitted that he made it.

arn

job
Jul 22, 2002, 03:27 AM
ok specs are crap.

the pdf seems kind of flaky. Maybe the guy did see the tower, but note the "4096MB ram." I dunno about anyone else here but that seems like too large of an increase.

Scottgfx
Jul 22, 2002, 03:42 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark
I'm willing to bet the following:

Other things make me wonder. 7Lb heat sync and vertical drives??? Don't think so. Also, why would the case include support or SCSI? Not even the Xserve uses SCSI. (I know, Ultra 160 for HD editing, but then why have the drives vertical?).


I've seen some PC systems (in my case a Compaq. no pun intended) that have the drives mounted vertically. My guess is that it would allow more convection airflow across the drives. In the current G4, you have the drives stacked horizontal, one on top of the other. I would imagine that there is a bit of heat build-up on the lower drive.

michaelyoung
Jul 22, 2002, 04:08 AM
Am I too much of a conspiracy theorist?

I think Apple leaked the photots to get the mac fanatics off the the whole .Mac fiasco.


Think about it. If they leak the photos it gets all of us excited and talking about something other than .mac.

After the pics are out they can do the usual letters to make it look legit and to add to the intrigue.


Hey, you think it is implausible?

mmmdreg
Jul 22, 2002, 04:11 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark
I'm willing to bet the following:

The case is real. But we won't see it in it's present (pictured) incarnation. This is a test box. The insides are the real deal, but the box is a tester. The drive bays are metal because Apple has no drive bay setup / config in their parts drawer that matches this setup. My guess is that the entire case will be brushed metal. This thing is...sadly...ugh-lee.



You are quite possibly correct there...i doubt they would release something like that so what you're saying could be right...instead of plain brushed metal, they might follow the iPod and do a two-tone thing where half of it is white plastic and the rest some metal...Seeing as this new case is being released now with the new processors, could that mean that the G5 is even further away than we first thought?

s10
Jul 22, 2002, 04:28 AM
...Apple leaked these images (real) to make people stop whining and complaining?

A very brief preview, during th weekend, on a French website, taken down quickly.

Personally, I'm 100% sure this is the new Tower. The specs are very nice but unrealistic.

strange_habits
Jul 22, 2002, 06:29 AM
Originally posted by Hemingray


:eek: Damn that was fast... looks like I DLed the pics just in time! :cool: Apple Legal, you can take down the sources, but you can't take down what's on my hard drive. :D

And as for the whole DDR thing, I was wondering what the hell GDR was...

Well, I guess that GDR means the former "German Democratic Republic" (still remember this?) which is the translation of DDR (Deutsche Demokratische Republik).

Agree?

AmbitiousLemon
Jul 22, 2002, 06:39 AM
i thought some quotes from the original threa might clear some things up. [btw, the poster would have said more if groovemaster had not chased him off]

DAMN the internet moves fast! I just made that PDF in CorelDRAW last night! and e-mailed it to macrumors.com webmaster but after getting no reply I posted it on the boards earlier; THAT WAS FRIGGIN FAST!

BTW the french site has very old pics of what's called a DVT or EVT model, many components aren't seen, like the massive heatsink; and teh MPU die is not at a 45 degree like that in the final product; the boards are blue like th XServe's...

You'll know I'm right when you see a final product with something only very recently changed... The green AGP card retainer clip which slides over the AGP slot; Has been replaced by a single piece brown connector with the clip built into it...

peterjhill
Jul 22, 2002, 07:15 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark


FireWire 2 is supposed to be backwards compatible. BUT the connectors do look different. Perhaps the backwards compatibility simply means you can run FW1 and 2 off the same chipset on the motherboard, with different connectors coming out of the machine.

maybe? pure speculation.

And because it is a bus architecture, if you mix fw1 and fw2 devices on the same chain, you are most likely going to make the whole thing operate at fw1 speeds, ala SCSI.

macmunch
Jul 22, 2002, 07:22 AM
I think the Pics are real

but not the pdf !

4096 MB SD RAM no ....


DDR are is now less expensice than SD

and SD is also too slow

I think the pdf is simply a fake

peterjhill
Jul 22, 2002, 07:23 AM
Originally posted by iH8Quark


why would they do that on a desktop? that's a server config. i've gotta call horse-puckey on that one.

Besides, that would make 4 external bay. Which means the tower would have to look similar in config to the one posted on page 1 of this thread.

Pros for the hotswap bays:
If they just have them and don't populate them, use internal drives for shipping units, then all the costs would go to people who want to use them

It would be cool to have if you're mac is critical to your making a living. You could have two mirrored disks in a raid, then if one fails, you could swap out the bad one and keep working



Cons:
That is alot of space inside the machine to use for something that less than, say, 20% of the buyers will want to use.

peterjhill
Jul 22, 2002, 07:33 AM
Originally posted by hitman
ok specs are crap.

the pdf seems kind of flaky. Maybe the guy did see the tower, but note the "4096MB ram." I dunno about anyone else here but that seems like too large of an increase.

Everyone wants four ram slots, and I don't think people doubt that Apple might do it. It is perfectly reasonable that they support up to 1 GB chips in each slot. They are already out there. Some people might want to put one into their machine, so why not. So therefore, you end up with 4GB of ram.

I think it is possible. Plus, Steve would harp on the fact that it supported that much.

<offtopic>
That reminds me of how many times Steve said, "_____ is the greatest ______" during the keynote. "iCal is the greatest calendar software" "iTunes is the greatest MP3 player" If I can't get iCal to sync with my work calendar, it will not be that great. (Corporate Time). <rant> And Sherlock3, damn, at least give the guy who developed Watson some free hardware or something. Better yet, how about a free .mac account for life ;-) </rant></offtopic>

Cappy
Jul 22, 2002, 09:08 AM
Originally posted by hitman
I was wondering about the pdf though. It said 4096MB Ram. A GB DIMM*4? Seems a bit high......

What world do you live in? ;)

Many of the x86 boards currently support 3 GB and if you factor in the markets where Apple wants to go(ie video) then plenty of ram will be important. Back in '95 my 7500/100 shipped with 16 MB of ram but was expandable to 1 GB. That would have been considered more outragious than this as far as being "high". I'd say 4 GB is very realistic.

Now if they could just get those ibooks to hold more than 640MB's. <<sigh>> :)

wchamlet
Jul 22, 2002, 09:36 AM
Wouldn't it be great...

Wouldn't it be great if Apple decided to release the new PowerMacs at Siggraph this week. It's obviously a big show and they have already sent out invites for all of the Shake users to attend :

__________________

July 22, 2002
Event: Siggraph Shake User Group Meeting
Time: 2:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Information: Apple Computer invites you to the 2002 Shake User Group Meeting to be held
at Siggraph in San Antonio, Texas.

When: Monday, July 22, 2:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Where: Menger Hotel Ballroom, 204 Alamo Plaza

The meeting will feature a series of group discussions, product
demonstrations and client presentations.

Please RSVP to http://seminars.apple.com/goToEvent.html?id=19167 by
Wednesday, July 17th.

We hope that you can join us.




Please let us know if you require any special accommodations in order to
attend. Dates, times, locations, speakers, and content may change without
notice. Apple and the seminar sponsors accept no responsibility in
connection with such changes.
______________________________
(courtesy of highend3d.com)

Makes you wonder just what type of products are going to be demonstrated? Hmmm... New G4's running the OS X version of Shake? Food for thought...

Chad



In my opinion, especially with Apple's latest buyout of major Highend software (Shake, Emagic, Rayz), that Apple could very well be unveiling their newer G4's this week at Siggraph. People are not stupid, and are very aware that Apple Powermacs are inferior when compared to AMD or Intel towers at the same price point. Apple has got to show these people that there is a reason for them to switch. From the comments that I have heard though, the current G4's are very weak when it comes to 3D. And I don't see any better place to unleash the newer Highend towers than at a Highend 3D/Film bizarre.

dongmin
Jul 22, 2002, 05:19 PM
Apologies to everyone for posting "the specs." I kind of jumped the gun on that one; didn't check where they originated.

Hopefully, no one got their hopes up too much.

phufball71
Jul 22, 2002, 05:36 PM
anyone wanna post the pic of the promac i never saw it

backspinner
Jul 22, 2002, 07:09 PM
I took the picture of the eBay motherboard and placed it next to the current innards picture. It's not exactly the same but defenitly of the same family. They have the same shape and connectors on the left. Some colors vary, but not pcb outlines. Most traces and small power components are exactly the same. I bet the current proto and the eBay motherboard are basicly the same.

You can't see the memory slots and the ports, but I'm convinced these are the same as well: make that the mystory port and 4xDDR slot.

backspinner
Jul 22, 2002, 07:18 PM
What wonders me is what is the big card in front of the picture of the inside of the tower? It is very big and it looks like not being plugged in the PCI slot. It looks like a test board with testcontacts or maybe artificial power dissipation. Definitely not a board being used by regular consumers. See how even the pattern of components is on it.

I guess that the current motherboard is older than the eBay photo. That would probably be in line with the rumor that the tower is an old test model.

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 07:26 PM
according to zdnet Moto just released a G5 chip...I don't know if it is the chip uses in the Apple Powermac..

http://zdnet.com.com/2100-1105-945430.html

kaneda
Jul 22, 2002, 07:32 PM
I went to Siggraph 2 years ago...Newtek was the only booth that advertised Powermac G4, but I think they used SGI to demonstrate their software. :)

Everywhere else used SGI workstations...or Intergraphs Z10...


OOohh but I love the GScube from Sony...realtime rendering...the size of two Powermacs...oooh, I love to have that baby in my room...:)

Huked on Fonick
Jul 22, 2002, 10:27 PM
This all seems faily reasonalbe except for the hole part about a 7 pound heat sink........
7 founds of aluminium that would take up the hole case. Lets put this into perspective. A Gallon of Water is a little over 7 pounds right around 8 pounds and i think aluminium is ligher than water???? So that would make 7 pounds of Aliminium HUGE!!! cuz a gallon of water is allready pretty good size (espessialy inside of a computer it would make up like 3/4 of the case)

My 0.02 USD

-Pat

MidnightRambler
Jul 23, 2002, 02:10 AM
Originally posted by Huked on Fonick
This all seems faily reasonalbe except for the hole part about a 7 pound heat sink........
7 founds of aluminium that would take up the hole case. Lets put this into perspective. A Gallon of Water is a little over 7 pounds right around 8 pounds and i think aluminium is ligher than water????

My 0.02 USD

-Pat




Aluminum lighter than water, 'eh?

Heck, last I checked they were building airplanes out of the stuff, ...so it must be lighter than air. :D




...another one's born every minute.

MidnightRambler
Jul 23, 2002, 02:29 AM
7 pound heatsink, huh?

I can't wait to see the mobile versions of whatever processor is going into that box implemented in the new PowerBooks.


I think whoever mentioned that someone might be trying to divert attention from the iTools/.mac fiacso, and the lack of discounted upgrades to Jaguar and OS X Server 10.2, might just be right.


If any heat is being dissipated with this talk of a seven pound heatsink, it's the heat that we should all still be directing in the general direction of Cupertino, with the fury of a flamethrower.

Free @mac.com email for life AND a reasonable fee for the OS X disk that will (hopefully) give us the performance / compatibility / features that we paid for last time around and didn't get!

spacehustler
Jul 23, 2002, 02:30 AM
I'm confused by the comments that the case in the photo - real or not - is ugly. It looks like a straightforward, almost subtle, evolution of the current tower. Based on Apple's design history, I'm assuming the difference between the grainy photo of it in a plastic bag and the real thing will be a positive one. For instance, it's hard to tell by the photo how the metal bits are going to fit in with the rest of the case but I'll be surprised if it's anything other than a cool, clean look - otherwise I'm sure they would have dumped the idea.

Is it the "decorative" intake vents that everyone objects to? I think they look great. Also, a friend of mine just pointed out that Mac users can now play around with custom internal lighting - a.k.a. the lowrider effect. Sweet! ;)

gropo
Jul 23, 2002, 08:04 AM
Originally posted by Huked on Fonick A Gallon of Water is a little over 7 pounds right around 8 pounds and i think aluminium is ligher than water???? So that would make 7 pounds of Aluminium HUGE!!!Yes, 7 pounds of matrixed aluminum would indeed consume a large volume of space. But here's an idea: Let's use a more dense element that conducts heat better than aluminum, like, oh say... COPPER! Nowhere is it written in stone that heat-sinks must be aluminum.

On the other hand, being that PowerMac motherboards are mounted vertically to a case, I cannot for the life of me foresee a 7lb heatsink latching on to a daughtercard which is in-turn screwed in to a motherboard (actually, screwed in to the alumium frame beneath the motherboard). I think the 7lb heatsink rumor is alot of hot air.

kingslod
Jul 25, 2002, 11:15 AM
Originally posted by dsamsa
I guess this confirms the authenticity of the photo! Damn, I was wishing that was a prototype. I hope Apple doesn't use that ugly front part... But if it comes with a G5, WHO CARES?!?!:D

I'm looking at my current slate blue G4 and there is an inset panel in the facing of the plastic front panel. Might the picture we're seeing simply be missing the front panel. It makes sense when I look that pic again.

Also, there is was some mention of an audio jack on the front. Could the "air vents" really be jack holders (audio, usb, firewire)? The angle would keep the cables drifting dwon to the desk, instead of poking straight out from the face and down. Could be kind of elegant. Anyway, take a look at the pics again if you have 'em. ;)