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View Full Version : my 800mhz ibook is faster than a 3.4 ghz PC, whoa!


slipper
Oct 21, 2004, 12:57 PM
another 'just wondering why' thread. pardon my ignorance as i am a computer noob, and please dont think i am merely glorifying macs with this thread. im looking for really subjective answers.

everytime i use a PC, it makes me appreciate Macs so much more. obviously my 800mhz g4 iBook is overall slower than a 3ghz PC processor wise, but i noticed that PCs tend to run at less than full capacity a lot more than my mac. considering i am a computer noobie, the best i could explain what i am thinking is that maybe PCs require more to run at optimal levels or are subject to more slow downs? thus slowing down to a point seemingly slower than my iBook. anyone know what i am blabbering about and have an explaination?

Capt Underpants
Oct 21, 2004, 01:08 PM
Pop in UT2K4 and see which one is faster.

Your iBook shouldn't be faster than that P4. Something's wrong if that is the case. Can you give more system specs?

AmigoMac
Oct 21, 2004, 01:11 PM
Even in downhill the P4 is faster ;)

But it's your opinion what matters, right?

a Xeon is just crap beside my eMac ... :cool:

Disco
Oct 21, 2004, 01:26 PM
It has been my experience that PCs when first bought glide by my iBook (800) and then after... week(s) days or even hours the PC has so many issues that my iBook seems to be much faster. Just my experience.

gopher
Oct 21, 2004, 01:29 PM
another 'just wondering why' thread. pardon my ignorance as i am a computer noob, and please dont think i am merely glorifying macs with this thread. im looking for really subjective answers.

everytime i use a PC, it makes me appreciate Macs so much more. obviously my 800mhz g4 iBook is overall slower than a 3ghz PC processor wise, but i noticed that PCs tend to run at less than full capacity a lot more than my mac. considering i am a computer noobie, the best i could explain what i am thinking is that maybe PCs require more to run at optimal levels or are subject to more slow downs? thus slowing down to a point seemingly slower than my iBook. anyone know what i am blabbering about and have an explaination?

http://forgetcomputers.com/~jdroz/pages/09.html

I've been pointing this out to the PC geeks in these boards since the beginning but none have believed me. It isn't the processor that makes the machine faster, it is the software, and how you use it. And don't forget the Macs have less overhead on the processor meaning that under the right conditions they will operate faster than a PC doing the same tasks. If a software doesn't run faster on a Mac, it is not because of the processor, it is because the developer didn't spend enough time optimizing their application for the Mac. So shop around and buy Mac friendly applications that are fast:

http://www.macmaps.com/macosxnative.html

should help.

AndrewMT
Oct 21, 2004, 01:33 PM
One program that I have noticed benefits from OSX is Macromedia's Freehand. Many times when I am exporting (rendering) a large freehand file to a jpeg, freehand becomes unresponsive for a long period and Windows (the OS) experiences many drawing errors. So now, whenever I have a complex freehand file to render, I send it over to my 1.2Ghz iMac and it smokes my 3.2Ghz PC.

AdamR01
Oct 21, 2004, 01:47 PM
The problem with PCs being slow is usually spyware. Most users run their computer as an Administrator account and they have no idea what they are doing. Runing as an Administrator gives programs like spyware and viruses the ability to pretty much spread anywhere on the machine. A knowledged user or one that only runs as a member of Users except when to install a program usually has a much better time.

slipper
Oct 21, 2004, 02:01 PM
The problem with PCs being slow is usually spyware. Most users run their computer as an Administrator account and they have no idea what they are doing. Runing as an Administrator gives programs like spyware and viruses the ability to pretty much spread anywhere on the machine. A knowledged user or one that only runs as a member of Users except when to install a program usually has a much better time.
interesting, should i apply this to my iBook also?

AmigoMac
Oct 21, 2004, 02:07 PM
interesting, should i apply this to my iBook also?

If you feel you may damage system files, yes, not because of spyware... I run as administrator in my iBook but the Family-account at home is a regular user. My 4 years old son has a restricted account :) My daughter will get an user account (of course, restricted) when she becomes 3 ;)

AdamR01
Oct 21, 2004, 02:20 PM
If you feel you may damage system files, yes, not because of spyware... I run as administrator in my iBook but the Family-account at home is a regular user. My 4 years old son has a restricted account :) My daughter will get an user account (of course, restricted) when she becomes 3 ;)

Hehe thats cool :) . I remember back in the day when I was 4 my parents first started letting me use our 286 PC. They always watched me carefully though. My dad freaked out when I got to a Dos prompt one time ;). I wish older versions of Windows were as secure as OS X and Windows NT/2K/XP. My mom used to teach at a preschool, and the classroom computer would get totally hosed because Windows 95 has virtually no security. I know there are programs to do this (I implement the security on the machines for a school district), but that costs $$$.

tdhurst
Oct 21, 2004, 03:05 PM
Pop in UT2K4 and see which one is faster.

Your iBook shouldn't be faster than that P4. Something's wrong if that is the case. Can you give more system specs?

Big deal, so the P4 plays games faster. Isn't that less important than productivity apps? I would trade better performance in word/photoshop type apps for slower game performance any day.

AdamR01
Oct 21, 2004, 03:42 PM
Big deal, so the P4 plays games faster. Isn't that less important than productivity apps? I would trade better performance in word/photoshop type apps for slower game performance any day.

Word is a lot faster for the PC than it is for the mac. Also, didn't Adobe drop saying the mac was the fastest photoshop platform?

jacg
Oct 21, 2004, 03:59 PM
I made a complex spreadsheet for school grades, etc and as it got bigger it began to run very slowly on my 1.25 PBG4 (with 1 GB). It would take a couple to seconds to calculate when switching sheets.

I was surprised to find that a 2 year old school PC ran it with no delays at all. And disappointed.

Is this normal?

redbaron
Oct 21, 2004, 03:59 PM
I wish older versions of Windows were as secure as OS X and Windows NT/2K/XP.

I haven't personally used OS X, but any UNIX-like OS should be way more secure than any Windows system. There was a known bug in Windows 95 which could be exploited to reveal the contents of any password field. This bug was still present in the initial release of Windows 2000. I don't know if it lasted any longer, but if it hadn't been fixed for 5 years, chances are it will never be. XP, although it is more secure than Windows 95/98/ME, does not encourage you to act securely. It encourages you to use a root account as your main user account, and, in my opinion, the limited user option is too limited and not changable, so that stuffs it up.

My school has recently upgraded its thin clients (the horrible pieces of crap that they make us students use, while giving all the teachers hi-spec laptops) with XP, and, as well as being several times slower, there are major security vulnerablilites - one was demonstrated by a friend of mine, who found a way to remotely log off any user on the network - from an unprivileged student account - and yet it is seemingly impossible to change the display res from anything but 800x600 60hz (these monitors could do 1024x768 no problems - we tried it once before they installed XP).

I run dual boot XP/Linux on my PC, and OS 8.6 on my battered old Performa 4400/200 (I'm working on getting Linux on it, but I haven't had the time), and I use Linux as my main OS, and, personally, I believe it is much more secure. It insists that root and all other users have a password, longer than 5 letters and not including any dictionary words. Priviledges are customisable - you can be as strict or as free as you like, but, in general, you can't do anything majorly bad to the system as a normal user. Also, its process-control features are much more advanced and accesible, and, unlike in Windows, killing a task does not result in the system becoming less stable than a one-legged drunk on an ice skating rink in a 100mi/hr wind.

Dont Hurt Me
Oct 21, 2004, 04:02 PM
This thread title should be changed, it sounds as if this was something George Bush would say. Slipper are you high?

AdamR01
Oct 21, 2004, 04:57 PM
My school has recently upgraded its thin clients (the horrible pieces of crap that they make us students use, while giving all the teachers hi-spec laptops) with XP, and, as well as being several times slower, there are major security vulnerablilites - one was demonstrated by a friend of mine, who found a way to remotely log off any user on the network - from an unprivileged student account - and yet it is seemingly impossible to change the display res from anything but 800x600 60hz (these monitors could do 1024x768 no problems - we tried it once before they installed XP).

I run dual boot XP/Linux on my PC, and OS 8.6 on my battered old Performa 4400/200 (I'm working on getting Linux on it, but I haven't had the time), and I use Linux as my main OS, and, personally, I believe it is much more secure. It insists that root and all other users have a password, longer than 5 letters and not including any dictionary words. Priviledges are customisable - you can be as strict or as free as you like, but, in general, you can't do anything majorly bad to the system as a normal user. Also, its process-control features are much more advanced and accesible, and, unlike in Windows, killing a task does not result in the system becoming less stable than a one-legged drunk on an ice skating rink in a 100mi/hr wind.

Well that resolution thing is either a driver issue, or they have set a GroupPolicy setting to disable changing. Thats kind of dumb. If you get into GroupPolicies you can customize the security of Windows 2K/XP greatly. For example. You right click on the desktop and open display properties. I have it set so the only tab that appears is the display tab and you CAN change the resolution. You can set permissions on where users can execute files. You can prevent changes to a lot of things. You can set Windows to require secure passwords, but it is not enabled by default. I agree this is very flawed. But Windows can be a lot more secure than people give it credit for. The OOBE (Out of Box Experience) thing that configures your system after you install is a piece of crap. I use an unattended install that disables this feature. Then when you install the only account it creates is an admin account with a password and i can add in a limited account at my leisure. Ive never had any issues with the task scheduler in windows though. Im curious to find out about how your friends exploit works.

Mav451
Oct 21, 2004, 05:22 PM
http://forgetcomputers.com/~jdroz/pages/09.html

I've been pointing this out to the PC geeks in these boards since the beginning but none have believed me. It isn't the processor that makes the machine faster, it is the software, and how you use it. And don't forget the Macs have less overhead on the processor meaning that under the right conditions they will operate faster than a PC doing the same tasks. If a software doesn't run faster on a Mac, it is not because of the processor, it is because the developer didn't spend enough time optimizing their application for the Mac. So shop around and buy Mac friendly applications that are fast:

http://www.macmaps.com/macosxnative.html

should help.

If you read this forums, you will know that i HEAVILY criticize and discourage using that site as a weapon against the "megahertz myth". How is that site any better? It is just as deceptive and wrong as the megahertz myth.

AMD dual 246 Opteron 13,667
AMD quad 846 Opteron 26,667
Apple 800 MHz G4 Power PC
(e.g. iMac/eMac) 11,450
Apple 933 MHz G4 Power PC 13,400

********* cannot be spelled more than even suggesting that a dual opteron is equaled by a SINGLE G4 processor.

I've read that site. It is heavily biased and blinded by its anti-Wintel stance. Trust me, you will be more convincing using empirical experiences than citing this site. FLOPS aren't always indictative of performance either. Who has the power? You have the power NOT to read that garbage. That is the power of individual choice.

Capt Underpants
Oct 21, 2004, 05:39 PM
Big deal, so the P4 plays games faster. Isn't that less important than productivity apps? I would trade better performance in word/photoshop type apps for slower game performance any day.

Yes, it is a big deal. You're obviously not a gamer. I can say that most people with PCs don't know how to take care of them. They click on a pop-up, and BAM! spyware is installed that slows the darn thing down. I would bet money that a 3.4 GHz PC opens word, and operates it faster than my 1.33 GHz mac. Word takes like 4 seconds just to realize that a word was spelled wrong! On my PC, it is instantaneous. That says nothing about the speed of the processor, however. On photoshop, the macs beat the PCs. "Big deal", as you say. I am a gamer, and gaming does matter to me. An 800 MHz iBook is slow, just as my 1.33 GHz PB is. I choose macs for their ease of use, not speed.

Maybe we should compare that iBook to a Pentium M, eh? That would be a battle, and we all know who would win. The Pentium M would severly slaughter the G4 on gaming AND productivity.

Mav451
Oct 21, 2004, 05:41 PM
You want more hilarious quotes from that site? I'll highlight some of the funniest:


..RAM is much more important than chip speed for almost everything your computer does...


Not entirely true. You need a good mix of BOTH, not all one or all of the other. Obviously, as long as you cross a certain processing threshold for your OS (1.6P4+ or 1600+ and up for XP) or similarly for OSX (800G4+ ??), then you are ok They make it sound as if you could get away with a G3 and 1Gig of RAM. *shaking head* Likewise 256MB + 3Ghz P4 is the opposite pole (but still a bad situation) << that's what I call the Dell syndrome. Dell is alleviating this slightly with the "free upgrade to 512MB".

another highly deceptive quote is this (probably made at the Williamettes, but those are long gone):


The bottom line is that Macs are very competitive in any performance test, and typically perform equal to or better than PCs advertising twice the MHz rating.


Haha, more FUD from this site. If that's the case, and since they believe that a Mac can beat a PC of twice the MHz, let's look at how a Dual 1.25Ghz G4 does against a AMD 2000+ (single processor @ 1.67Ghz):

http://www.theandyzone.com/computer/shootout/shootout.html

OGL H/W Testing (Polygons)
AMD 1.67 x 1 = 1414508
G4 1.25 x 2 = 1146134

S/W Lighting test?
AMD 1.67 x 1 = 1083607
G4 1.25 x 2 = 477630

Equivalent to twice? The implication is that a G4 at 1.25 can beat or equal a 2.5Ghz PC. The G4 isn't even matching a 1.67Ghz PC here. If the G4 went against a Barton (either 333 or 400FSB), it would be even worse. And the PC here is only 33% higher in clockspeed.

Why am I talking about the G4? B/c this article was written even before the release of the G4 (which makes the article even more hilarious). If this was post G5, it would make a little more sense, but its still far off.

gopher
Oct 25, 2004, 12:36 PM
If you read this forums, you will know that i HEAVILY criticize and discourage using that site as a weapon against the "megahertz myth". How is that site any better? It is just as deceptive and wrong as the megahertz myth.

AMD dual 246 Opteron 13,667
AMD quad 846 Opteron 26,667
Apple 800 MHz G4 Power PC
(e.g. iMac/eMac) 11,450
Apple 933 MHz G4 Power PC 13,400

********* cannot be spelled more than even suggesting that a dual opteron is equaled by a SINGLE G4 processor.

I've read that site. It is heavily biased and blinded by its anti-Wintel stance. Trust me, you will be more convincing using empirical experiences than citing this site. FLOPS aren't always indictative of performance either. Who has the power? You have the power NOT to read that garbage. That is the power of individual choice.

You may choose not to read it, and think it is anti-Windows bias. But much of what it says is true based on personal experience. If you just develop for the Mac platform directly you will get much faster applications. Not to mention that MTOPS stats come from the processor manufacturers' own spec pages and what they submit to the Federal Trade Commission as the stats to allow import into other countries. The fact remains Intel is saying their 1.5 Ghz Centrino processors are faster as Notebook processors than the 3 Ghz Pentium IVs that were put in Notebooks before. AMD took out the Mhz rating and started using a numbering system. Don't believe the Mhz system. It is a myth. If the Intel and AMD chips can't be consistant on Mhz, how can you honestly compare them to IBM and Motorola chips based on Mhz alone? You can't.

Mav451
Oct 25, 2004, 06:43 PM
You still haven't rebutted what I said. I said that it is dangerous for a pro-Mac site to deceive its readers into thinking that the Single G4 would come close to the processing power of a pair of Opterons 246's (2.0Ghz x 2).

AMD dual 246 Opteron 13,667
AMD quad 846 Opteron 26,667
Apple 800 MHz G4 Power PC
(e.g. iMac/eMac) 11,450
Apple 933 MHz G4 Power PC 13,400

based on MTOPS alone, a viewer may think, incorrectly, that because a single G4 can push 13,400, it is competitive, to a dual processor system. That is far more deceiving that even pushing a 1.5Ghz P4 vs. a 1.13 P3. THat was pretty bad, but far worse is this "Who has the Power", trying to suggest that the G4 is even close to an Opteron.

Tell me how many applications show that the G4 "has the power" of a Dual Opteron, and then I will believe what the site has to say.

That is what I worry about the most => more deception. Fighting fire with fire is not the way to go here.

gopher
Oct 25, 2004, 08:18 PM
You still haven't rebutted what I said. I said that it is dangerous for a pro-Mac site to deceive its readers into thinking that the Single G4 would come close to the processing power of a pair of Opterons 246's (2.0Ghz x 2).

AMD dual 246 Opteron 13,667
AMD quad 846 Opteron 26,667
Apple 800 MHz G4 Power PC
(e.g. iMac/eMac) 11,450
Apple 933 MHz G4 Power PC 13,400

based on MTOPS alone, a viewer may think, incorrectly, that because a single G4 can push 13,400, it is competitive, to a dual processor system. That is far more deceiving that even pushing a 1.5Ghz P4 vs. a 1.13 P3. THat was pretty bad, but far worse is this "Who has the Power", trying to suggest that the G4 is even close to an Opteron.

Tell me how many applications show that the G4 "has the power" of a Dual Opteron, and then I will believe what the site has to say.

That is what I worry about the most => more deception. Fighting fire with fire is not the way to go here.

The reason quite plain and simply that the G4 can be as optimized is how the Altivec engine works. Remember very few applications are optimized for dual processors. However, Altivec provides a vector parallel processing unit inside the processor that makes it act like a much higher end processor than it initially may appear to be. Apple listed at least 20 some applications that take advantage of Altivec on its website when the G4 was the top processor. Now they have gone to show what the G5 can do:

http://www.apple.com/powermac/performance/

The question though if you read the site carefully is not one of raw power, but of how much work you can actually get done. With the Mac operating system security, and with the fact navigating the filing system is a lot quicker, you can get much more done much quicker. Time and again there have been total cost of ownership cost benefit analysis done that show Macs require less maintenance, and let you get more done than PCs in the same amount of time. Your real speed gain is when you aren't fighting off security hazards daily.

Mav451
Oct 25, 2004, 09:01 PM
I have already read the productivity nonsense. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the site going from

A) MTOPs

and translating that to

B) Performs better than [insert AMD/Intel]


Remember very few applications are optimized for dual processors.


Well if that's the case, why has Apple been selling dual processor units, since the PMac G4 450? Or why is the majority of their line dual processors? If you recall, their best selling box was the dual 2.0's just a year ago. Why would they sell dual proc models if they aren't optimized?

Seriously, I'm done arguing with a wall.

Why don't you take a look at the applications here, and tell me where a G4 would come even close to an Opteron:
http://www.geocities.com/sw_perf/

When you find one where a G4 gets close to 90-95% the performance of an Opteron (as "Who has the Power" would lead you to believe, MTOPs = Performance); THEN you can come back and tell me.

That is PRECISELY what the site is misleading its readers to believe, and that's why I say it is nonsense. And please, no more PR links. Should be graphs, performance charts that show the G4 coming close to an Opteron.

gopher
Oct 25, 2004, 09:05 PM
I have already read the productivity nonsense. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the site going from

A) MTOPs

and translating that to

B) Performs better than [insert AMD/Intel]



Well if that's the case, why has Apple been selling dual processor units, since the PMac G4 450? Or why is the majority of their line dual processors? If you recall, their best selling box was the dual 2.0's just a year ago. Why would they sell dual proc models if they aren't optimized?

Seriously, I'm done arguing with a wall.

Why don't you take a look at the applications here, and tell me where a G4 would come even close to an Opteron:
http://www.geocities.com/sw_perf/

When you find one where a G4 gets close to 90-95% the performance of an Opteron (as "Who has the Power" would lead you to believe, MTOPs = Performance); THEN you can come back and tell me.

That is PRECISELY what the site is misleading its readers to believe, and that's why I say it is nonsense. And please, no more PR links. Should be graphs, performance charts that show the G4 coming close to an Opteron.

Why don't you ask the site's author yourself if you doubt them so much?

Mav451
Oct 26, 2004, 01:07 AM
Why? This is like asking Tucker Carlson on CrossFire to give me a straight answer on Kerry. I'm not going to get one, nor do I expect one.

And as my link shows, the graphs speak for themselves. I don't need to ask the website author to prove his statements--he's only going to spin them harder and harder. He may even BTQ for all I know, or he will probably take the "productivity" route, while never actually answering my question.

I doubt that I'm the first to point him to that link, and I certainly wouldn't be the last.

gopher
Oct 26, 2004, 06:06 AM
Why? This is like asking Tucker Carlson on CrossFire to give me a straight answer on Kerry. I'm not going to get one, nor do I expect one.

And as my link shows, the graphs speak for themselves. I don't need to ask the website author to prove his statements--he's only going to spin them harder and harder. He may even BTQ for all I know, or he will probably take the "productivity" route, while never actually answering my question.

I doubt that I'm the first to point him to that link, and I certainly wouldn't be the last.

You don't know until you try.

Pixeled_Apple
Oct 26, 2004, 06:40 AM
I just want 2 tell u somethin' about your subject '800mhz is faster than 3.4ghz P4'

This are the Facts:

MHZ will not equal to PERFORMANCE

mhz is jus a contributing factor to performance, the Macintosh G4 (7) has less pipeline stages, than the P4 (20). So the process will be done faster. It also rely's on the architure of the processor, and the Cache is also a Factor. This is called the Megahertz Myth.

I hope that you have learnt that performance is just more than the 3 symbols MHz.

Source is from the video "Megahertz Myth". (But a 800mhz is not that fast :P)

jackieonasses
Oct 26, 2004, 08:03 AM
I just want 2 tell u somethin' about your subject '800mhz is faster than 3.4ghz P4'

This are the Facts:

MHZ will not equal to PERFORMANCE

mhz is jus a contributing factor to performance, the Macintosh G4 (7) has less pipeline stages, than the P4 (20). So the process will be done faster. It also rely's on the architure of the processor, and the Cache is also a Factor. This is called the Megahertz Myth.

I hope that you have learnt that performance is just more than the 3 symbols MHz.

Source is from the video "Megahertz Myth". (But a 800mhz is not that fast :P)
The cache on that ibook is 133mhz. Maybe slower.

Give it up that ibook doesnt come close to anything pc related. You buy your macs for ease-of-use and liack of virii, and the ilife apps. Stop pretending.

Mav451
Oct 26, 2004, 03:07 PM
You don't know until you try.

Hehe, you know what? I just might then. Can't really do it this week though cuz the profs love stacking projects and overlapping homework due dates -_-.

AdamR01
Oct 26, 2004, 09:24 PM
How can THEORETICAL numbers possibly be used to compare performance and be taken seriously? Read between the lines people.

7on
Oct 26, 2004, 09:42 PM
Word is a lot faster for the PC than it is for the mac. Also, didn't Adobe drop saying the mac was the fastest photoshop platform?

I'm not sure they ever said it was. They said the PC was faster up until WWDC 2003. And even then that was only like 2 weeks or something.

The fact is - most Adobe apps are run on sub 600Mhz machines - because design firms are notorious for using the oldest computers. Some places won't go G5 for a few more years. The place where I work has one G5 - but the rest are Quick Silvers or Sawtooths.

Mav451
Oct 27, 2004, 02:45 AM
How can THEORETICAL numbers possibly be used to compare performance and be taken seriously? Read between the lines people.

Ah hah. Finally a voice of reason. This is good to see.

Mord
Oct 27, 2004, 06:08 AM
pc's bog down, it's a fact of life benhmarks are done on fresh installs with only the app required installed, i'd like to see a benchmark of an imac g5 which has had graphic design work done on it for a month Vs a 3.6GHz P4 in the same test conditions.

sure you can keep your system clean with umteen firewalls virus checkers ct. but that eats in on your work time.

the ultimate benchmark would be 20 graphic designers told to make a project ten on pc's ten on macs, a long project.

it's real life speed that matters not gigaflops or ow man fps it can do with ut2k4 with a fresh install.

(yes i know macs will still get destroyed at games but thats only untill apple get's a hardware sound card and there is some way to bridge the gap between open gl and directx.

Mord
Oct 27, 2004, 06:13 AM
The cache on that ibook is 133mhz. Maybe slower.

Give it up that ibook doesnt come close to anything pc related. You buy your macs for ease-of-use and liack of virii, and the ilife apps. Stop pretending.

the cache is 256Kb th bus is 133MHz.


(oh and mav get some freaking ram, my ibook choked on 128MB get a 512 stick there not too much, my book is acctually a fair bit more responcive that a someone i knows amd64 HP laptop that may be because it's spyware laden as he looks at allot of p0rn, but i boot faster than him, i open douments faster, when he get's to his desktop you cant do anything for the firs minit it just hangs there.

Pixeled_Apple
Oct 27, 2004, 06:55 AM
yea.. the cache 133mhz didn't make sense.... Anyways... 256kbs for cache isn't that big, 512kbs is good, but it depends on the mac machine...

AdamR01
Oct 27, 2004, 09:02 AM
Ok, here's some evidence that the numbers do not mean everything. Go to that lovely site http://forgetcomputers.com/~jdroz/pages/09.html Then go to the link where apple has their numbers for MTOPS.

iBook
12-inch & 14-inch display
G3 @ 800 MHz 1,064

iBook G4
12-inch display
G4 @ 800 MHz 11,464

The only difference real between a G4 and a G3 is altivec. How can there then be a more than 10x increase in speed? Altivec! Is everything optimized for altivec? No. This also assumes the G4 isnt crippled by a slow bus speed...

oingoboingo
Oct 27, 2004, 06:08 PM
I made a complex spreadsheet for school grades, etc and as it got bigger it began to run very slowly on my 1.25 PBG4 (with 1 GB). It would take a couple to seconds to calculate when switching sheets.

I was surprised to find that a 2 year old school PC ran it with no delays at all. And disappointed.

Is this normal?

Yep. MS Office runs much more smoothly on Windows than it does on the Mac. Powerpoint performance can be downright diabolical on both my 1.6GHz G5 and my 1.33GHz PowerBook (see sig for details), yet when the same file is opened on a regular-spec office PC, performance is fine.

In general I think poor software optimization is the biggest problem facing Mac users at the moment. Games are currently the best example of this, but as you have noticed, even 'lightweight' apps like MS Word sometimes feel sluggish on the Mac compared to similarly (or worse) specced PCs. Hopefully tools like XCode and improved versions of compilers and libraries will eventually make this problem go away (or at least reduce its impact).