New iPhone vs. an older desktop computer

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by rotobadger, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. rotobadger macrumors 65816

    rotobadger

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    #1
    I was hoping someone might be able help me understand how the new iPhone compares to an actual desktop computer. Several years ago I had an Emachines desktop computer. 400 MHz with 128 MB of RAM and a 4 GB (!) hard drive. Compared to the 600 MHz processor in the iPhone with 256 MB of RAM does this mean the iPhone is more "powerful" than my old E-Machines computer? Or am I comparing Apples to Oranges (no pun intended)? On paper it looks like the iPhone blows the computer away.

    I've always wondered about this and hope someone can explain. Thanks!
     
  2. JBaker122586 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    #2
    While you can't really do a 1:1 comparison, I would still say yes, the iPhone blows your eMachines computer away.
     
  3. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #3
    Yes. The iPhone is more powerful, but even more so since the RAM is faster and the processor speed isn't really a big deal, but the iPhone does have a more efficient architecture. I would bet that with the iPhone underclocked to 400MHz it would still be more powerful.
     
  4. pianoplayer1 macrumors 6502

    pianoplayer1

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    Dec 31, 2005
    Location:
    New York
    #4
    haha I was also thinking about this - how would the iphone compare to a G3 processor at ~600 MHz?
     
  5. fleshman03 macrumors 68000

    fleshman03

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    Location:
    Sioux City, IA
    #5
    I wonder if it's possible to hack the iPhone 3GS to run MacOS...

    Run a few benchmarks and we'll know....

    Pipe dreams...
     
  6. JohnnyQuest macrumors 65816

    JohnnyQuest

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    #6
    That's what really impresses me about the 3G S, is how powerful it is in relation to machines that came out just a couple of years ago. Incredible.
     
  7. Switz213 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
    #7
    http://namedfork.net/iphone/minivmac/
    Have a blast.
     
  8. Dr. Cabrera macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #8
    what are you guys talking about

    I would take a P4 chip over an ARM chip any day

    the old celeron's were a piece crap, but the celeron D chips are not terrible


    mhz and ram speed are not everything, you have to take into account how complex the CPU architecture is, plus the fact desktops allow you to have add in cards like a GPU and an external sound card.
     
  9. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #9
    You'd rather have an old P4 computer than an iPhone just because you can expand on it? :confused::confused::confused:
     
  10. Dr. Cabrera macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #10
    I'm talking about pure processing power

    If you could fit a pentium 4 chip + dedicated 3D GPU running windows XP inside a 3G i would definitely take that !
     
  11. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #11
    Isn't there already a dedicated 3D GPU in the iPhone?
     
  12. LeBlancStar macrumors newbie

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    Jun 16, 2009
  13. Synthetickiller macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2009
    #13
    I don't get what the purpose of comparing the "usefulness." You can do a million more things with a P4 than an iPhone b/c they are designed for different things.

    I can say that YEARS ago, I remember running a 550mhz Athlon w/ a GeForce 1 video card that ran quake 3 smoothly. The 3g can do the same thing, so I'd say the 3G S is way beyond a 600mhz P3/first gen Athlon.

    Question is, is there a version of 3dmark for the iphone? I'd love to run it, lol. Now if I can OC my 3G S.... :D
     
  14. G4R2 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    #14
    I remember thinking that my first desktop computer was more powerful than the computer that powered the Apollo command module and the Lunar Lander fifteen years earlier.

    It didn't mean I could land my desk on the moon.

    The same is true of comparing the iPhone to older PC's. Arguably, it is more powerful. But I wouldn't want to write a novel on it.

    Possibly the day will come when the iPhone will wirelessly link with a nearby monitor and keyboard and present a desktop style UI to perform some office work. But for now it's primarily a mobile device that can't really be compared to a desktop PC as they perform different functions and have different strengths, regardless of their relative power.
     
  15. rotobadger thread starter macrumors 65816

    rotobadger

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    #15
    Thanks for the answers so far guys. The above is kind of what I'm getting at. I understand that a desktop computer and a cell phone are different beasts but it's fun to think about having something in your pocket like an iPhone that can out perform what was sitting on your desk a few years ago. I read somewhere that the original Game Boy had more "power" than the computers used to handle the first trip to the moon. Amazing stuff!

    I guess another way of looking at it is if you could install Windows 95 into your iPhone and plug a keyboard and a monitor into it, would it perform as well as a 400 MHz Emachine with 128 MB of RAM?

    This stuff facinates me. Think about what we'll be saying about the iPhone of today...20 years from now. They'll be like those old LED calculators! :p
     

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