Intel's big mouth - more on the new Macbook pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dlethe, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. dlethe macrumors newbie

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    #1
    I went to intel developers conference, and somebody at Intel talked about their newer chipsets, features, and how certain vendors (Apple) is leveraging Intel's unique, world class, blah, blah blah technology ...

    Bottom line, this is what we can expect, based on what I heard, consensus of some attendees, and putting 2+2 together. Some of this also came from speaking to some Intel R&D people, and asking where they spend their time.
    I expect all will be available on the Macbook Pro, but no telling how they differentiate some of them between models. Anything inherent in the chipsets, you can expect to be in entire line. The rest is good old-fashioned marketing ..
    :D
    Not every version of the new macbook pro may have all of these features, it is just that these were the talking points about what is coming soon from Apple. Suffice to say the highest-end MBP will have these features

    * quad core
    * No internal BluRay - all versions shipping now are too big, use too much power and are too slow, consensus is it will be external, a la macbook air. I have not seen a lot of people talking about no internal optical, so thought I would offer this as a real probability. None of the engineers I know are happy about the state of low-profile blu-ray and awful performance, so this makes sense to me and others.

    * Glass trackpad, with iPhone-like API & features, but also with 2 & 3 button touch logic for better compatibility with other operating systems. I am big into virtual operating systems, and the intel chipsets and logic for protecting virtual resources really lend itself to this, so (IMHO) you can take this one to the bank.

    * WiMax (no doubt it will be there .. it is part of Intel's chipset)

    * Extensive improvements relating to power management, major work done here, from shutting down unused cores, graphics logic, use of SSD, slowing down CPU speed dynamically (Major theme is power saving, anything to be "green", so Intel has made major advancements here ... it is in core logic chipsets, so it will be used.)

    * 64GB SSD for boot, micro HD for add-on data (SSD comes from the "green" initiative, but no telling how SSD vs HD will be combined for any particular model. A decently-performing 64GB SSD is available, so this makes sense)

    * The memory bus uses 36 bits, which means 64GB of RAM is what we can expect. No idea what Apple will ship, but the hardware maxes out at 64GB (gut feeling 8 or 16GB will be available day 1). Everything else is fully 64-bit.

    * RGB backlight display - very very cool. Low power, better looking, and more intelligent logic for mixing live video and frame overlays. I didn't get chance to hear that part as much but lots of oohs and ahhs.
    * Some extra special things relating to graphics, part of this lower power deal. Consensus among some people is that Apple will have the lower-end Macbook/Macbook Pros with graphics on motherboard. Higher-end systems will allow user-upgradable daughter for memory. Reason is that graphics is CPU/heat pig, and as they go to higher density chipsets, performance and heat requirements improve dramatically. We've all seen orders of magnitude increases in graphics over last few years, and by allowing customers to upgrade graphics themselves, lifespan of the macbook will be extended .. and Apple can make money on graphics upgrades. This part is a little fuzzy as Apple could still decide to bolt-on graphics and not make it upgradable, but people I talked to say that it makes sense to offer graphics upgrade path in light of improvements in power requirements alone.


    *
     
  2. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    #2
    We should note that IDF was mostly about future products that will not become available for upwards of a year. So the MacBook Pro refresh expected in the next 30-60 days will not be able to incorporate much of the CPU and GPU technologies showcased.

    The current Core 2 line has a 48-bit memory bus which allows up to 256TB to be addressed. 36-bit memory buses were last seen with the original Core family.

    The Q9100 quad-core is probable, but the faster QX9300 will need a change in the form factor to improve cooling.

    I agree Blu-ray is unlikely (though it is getting cheaper - slot-load burners are now down around $500 at wholesale), but I think we will finally see HDCP enabled to allow HD downloads from iTunes.

    The glass trackpad has some interesting pluses, but also some minuses. Could go either way.

    WiMax may or may not happen since Apple does not currently use Intel's wireless chipsets (they use Broadcom). If they do move to the full Centrino 2 chipset, then we're talking, but more and more rumors point to nVidia being the new chipset which means a third-party WiMax chip would be necessary. Personally, I think the Pro needs it, in whatever form.

    I still believe SSDs are too expensive and having two drives - one for the OS and one for everything else - just adds needless complexity to the OS which is anathema to Apple.

    LCD panels using RGB LEDs look to be a cool technology, but I have heard little about them. NEC supposedly offered a 21" display back in 2005.
     
  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #3
    Changed for realism.
     
  4. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #4
    Thanks. My eyebrows were getting closer and closer together with each line.

    What would Intel have to do with knowing about Blu-Ray, SSD, trackpad, or anything else?

    And where in the MBP would they fit both an SSD and a normal HDD? Power requirements?

    Were you stoned when you wrote this?
     
  5. NintendoFan macrumors regular

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  6. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #6
    I'm hoping for that as well.
     
  7. mobi macrumors 6502

    mobi

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    #7
    "No idea what Apple will ship, but the hardware maxes out at 64GB (gut feeling 8 or 16GB will be available..."

    8 or 16GB would be ideal, however it is great to know the hardware supports up to 64GB.
     
  8. iMacmatician macrumors 601

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    #8
    Only reasonably likely subpoint out of all of them, and that's just because a glass trackpad has been rumored by a reliable source.

    Interesting point there. I wonder if this will pave the way for Quadros and other wider range of GPUs.

    I wanted Lynnfield, Havendale, Larrabee, and 32 nm Atom die pictures. :( Instead, there were Beckton and Moorestown wafers shown. :rolleyes::D

    (Kinda wishful thinking now that I look at it.)

    Absolutely. I can see 8 GB, but I think 16 GB needs 4 slots as of now.
     
  9. monkey86 macrumors 6502

    monkey86

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  10. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #10
    Right, but if the new chipset supports DIMMs of 8 GB density, and future DDR2 or DDR3 (whichever is used) modules support that in laptops (which of course they eventually will, though perhaps not in DDR2), then we'll be able to have it eventually. :)
     
  11. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    #11
    Intel was showing 16GB DDR3 modules at IDF, but I am sure they are hideously expensive.
     
  12. NintendoFan macrumors regular

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    #12
    Is the next mainboard strictly DDR3 or does it come in DDR2 too? I hope Apple, if there is a choice, opts to go with DDR3.
     
  13. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    #13
    Montevina supports both. I imagine the nVidia chipset does, as well.

    Nehalem / Core i7 will be DDR3.
     
  14. Yixian macrumors 65816

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  15. otispunkmeyer macrumors 6502

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    #15
    we should jus jump to DDR5 - quad data rate FTW! GDDR5 has already helped the Radeon 4870 match the badwidth of a 260GTX despite sticking to the now old, tried and tested 256bit memory bus.
     
  16. NintendoFan macrumors regular

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    #16
    Well, let's hope Apple does indeed choose to go with DDR3.
     
  17. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #17
    Lol, DDR5 won't be available for desktop computers for quite a few years.

    By the way, the "old 256-bit method" is the same as the 512-bit "method," it's just got half as many memory controllers. It's not new technology.

    And ATI definitely did the right thing, leveraging the enormously high clocks and high bandwidth of GDDR5; 256-bit memory architecture keeps power consumption and costs down, whereas the GeForce 260/280 GTX cost a ton to produce and use 1.21 jiggawatts (okay, gigawatts) of power :D
     
  18. Jiddick ExRex macrumors 65816

    Jiddick ExRex

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    #18
    I severely doubt that all this will come true. It won't be economically feasible seeing as it will take the MBP back to scratch in terms of support, hardware bug fixes and design flaws.

    If you want to get your hopes up, expect it at least to be incrementally implemented over the next couple of years.
     
  19. cherry su macrumors 65816

    cherry su

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    #19
    which means we'll have to buy new memory instead of re-using our trusty DDR2 667MHz so-dimms that we've been using in our iMacs, MacBooks, MacBook Pros, and Mac minis for the past few years :cool:
     
  20. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #20
    Which you would anyway if they got with DDR2-800
     
  21. t0mat0 macrumors 603

    t0mat0

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    #21
    Would be a great "product transition"... Let's hope they drop in price - anything that can fit more RAM in a given slot number and volume reliably is a decent thing. hopefully the power draw isn't going to be horrendous - the improvements made in Nehalem sound impressive, the IDF talk about Nehalem really went into detail as to the philosophy (it might have been some BS, but it didn't seem that way from a layman's perspective) of the design, and the power improvements, which they can build on. QPI, actually taking a quiet head nod to Hyperthreading etc.
     
  22. NintendoFan macrumors regular

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    #22
    Or when Nehalem is released.
     
  23. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    #23
    Apple will not use top-of-the-line parts, but they will use something close to that. Also I doubt they will add WiMax or 3G. They have to fix their WiFi first!
     
  24. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    #24
    Erm... shouldn't DDR3 use less power than DDR2?
     
  25. NintendoFan macrumors regular

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    #25
    Yes it does. It uses 1.5v where as DDR2 uses 1.8v.
     

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