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PowerMac G5s in Stores?

adamfilip

macrumors 6502a
Apr 13, 2003
840
1
burlington, Ontario canada
here is the entire article

PPLE COMPUTER has recently received much applause for its iTunes music service. But its new Power Mac G5 computers, set to arrive in stores today, will probably have a much larger impact on the world of personal computing.

Apple already has 100,000 orders for its G5 machines, which are priced at $2,000 to $3,000, depending on the configuration. The breakthrough is that the computers use 64-bit microprocessors, a significant step beyond the 32-bit processors on current Apple machines and most Windows-based PC's.

Apple is not alone. In the Windows world, Advanced Micro Devices plans next month to roll out a 64-bit processor, the Athlon 64 FX. And Intel's Itanium chips, introduced in 2001, are already 64-bit processors — although in contrast to the Apple and Advance Micro products, the Itanium is not a processor to which users of lesser chips can easily switch.

The arrival of 64-bit desktop processors signifies a new era of computing — initially for professionals who are bumping up against the memory limits of existing PC's. Soon afterward the new chips will affect everyday computer users, for whom a new generation of media machines should offer remarkable improvements in audio and visual effects.

"I think we're dropping a snowball down the hill," said Rich Heye, vice president and general manager of Advanced Micro's microprocessor business unit. "Sixty-four-bit computing will take off faster than people think."

Why do 64 bits matter?

Microprocessors are generally defined by the number of pieces of information they can manipulate at once. A 32-bit microprocessor, for example, can move, add, subtract or multiply numbers that are 32 zeros and ones long. A 64-bit processor is capable of handling binary numbers consisting of a string of 64 zeros and ones.

It is the length of the information string that determines the amount of random-access memory, or RAM, a processor can make use of during a task. The more RAM per task, the greater the computing power.

Thirty-two bit processors are limited to a theoretical maximum of handling 4 billion bytes of RAM per task. (A byte equals eight bits.) But by the magic of exponential math, a 64-bit processor can theoretically handle 16 quintillion (or 16 billion billion) bytes of RAM. For all current practical purposes, that is an infinite amount.

Until recently, such numbers were largely meaningless, because of the cost of a RAM chip (technically known as a D-RAM, or dynamic random access memory, chip). But now that the cost of a billion bytes, or a gigabyte, of RAM has fallen below $400 (from thousands of dollars several years ago), it becomes economically feasible to have personal computers that are not bound by the four-gigabyte limit of 32-bit chips.

"Memory has become cheap enough that it doesn't matter for professional PC users," said Steven P. Jobs, Apple's chief executive and co-founder. "The killer app is breaking through the four-gigabyte barrier."

People who recall the shift from 8-bit to 16-bit computing in the early 1980's, and the shift from 16-bit to 32-bit processors in the late 80's, say the move to 64 bits will again make the personal computer a significantly different kind of information tool.

"The graphics performance offered by 64-bit computing will be a big step up," said Richard Doherty, a computer designer who is president of Envisioneering, a consulting firm in Seaford, N.Y. "It will put a tremendous amount of power into the hands of scientific researchers and engineers first, and to a secondary degree to some artists who want to express themselves in three-dimensional design."

If the shift happens quickly, it will also put tremendous pressure on Intel. Apple and Advanced Micro Devices have chosen to offer personal computer users a fairly seamless transition from 32-bit to 64-bit desktop computing, by making it possible for the new chips to work with the existing software of 32-bit users.

But Intel has gambled that users in search of higher performance will be willing to uproot and move to Itanium computers, which require a new library of software, including special versions of the Windows or Linux operating systems.

So far, despite investing several billions of dollars along with Hewlett-Packard to develop Itanium hardware and reportedly spending as much as $700 million to try luring software developers into the fold, Intel has not had much market momentum from the Itanium.

Advanced Micro is counting on its 64-bit chips to take the fullest advantage of Microsoft's next version of Windows, now code-named Longhorn and scheduled for a 2005 introduction.

Sixty-four bit computing has already long been the norm in scientific and corporate computing and more recently in video game machines. The question of how much RAM is needed by PC users has long been a subject of debate in the personal computer industry. As PC's have evolved from 8 to 16 and then to 32 bits, hardware engineers and software designers have at first scratched their heads over what users might do with all of that RAM.

Now it is becoming increasingly clear that if bigger chunks of computer memory are available and affordable, users will gobble them up.

Hollywood digital animation studios already require at least two gigabytes of RAM to render a single frame in a movie like Pixar's "Monsters, Inc." Adding even more realism will require expanding the amount of data in images, and their RAM demands, exponentially.

And for graphics software like Adobe Photoshop, 64-bit processing is expected to greatly enhance the computer's ability to move large image files in the computer's memory. Adobe, in fact, is planning to make software available on Tuesday that it says will improve Photoshop's performance on Apple's G5 computers by 75 to 200 percent, depending on the operation.

For all kinds of databases, meanwhile, retrieving information can be remarkably faster in the 64-bit world, because vast amounts of data can reside in RAM, where it is more directly accessible than if it must be stored on disk.

But beyond the predictable costs and performance benefits, if 64-bit computing follows the PC's historical patterns, this migration may bring a surprise or two.

Mr. Heye predicts: "There are two 22-year-olds in a garage somewhere creating some piece of software with a 64-bit computer that we are all going to want."
 
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mvc

macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2003
760
0
Outer-Roa
w00t! Shake that aluminium booty baby! Now how long before they get to the bottom of the world so I can get one! :)
 
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howard

macrumors 68020
Nov 18, 2002
2,017
2
100,000 G5's on order?? holy crap...if that was for just 2000 an order that would be $200,000,000....right? wonder exactly how much profit they make on each machine.
 
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coolsoldier

macrumors 6502
Jan 7, 2003
402
0
The 909
I wouldn't be suprised if they started shipping preorders on monday, but I don't expect them on store shelves for a while still.
 
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iJon

macrumors 604
Feb 7, 2002
6,569
158
uh huh sure. i have a feeling apple will ship 1 of every model to some store, just to say they kept their promise.

iJon
 
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chetwilliams

macrumors member
Jul 17, 2002
32
0
Originally posted by howard
100,000 G5's on order?? holy crap...if that was for just 2000 an order that would be $200,000,000....right? wonder exactly how much profit they make on each machine.

I heard Apple has a 30+% margin on the pro machines. That would be $60+ million. Not bad for a machine that hasn't been released yet.

Now if they would just stop running the darn guy hitting the tree advertisements. It makes me want to check my order status every time I see one.
 
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cb911

macrumors 601
Mar 12, 2002
4,122
3
BrisVegas, Australia
well it's lunch time here in Australia now... I just went to a Apple reseller and they didn't have any G5's. now that I come to think of it... i don't even remember seeing any G5 posters or anything?:confused:

could this mean anything for the rumors of PowerBook updates on the 19th? would Apple release them now and have both the new PowerMacs and PowerBooks in the news?
 
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Waluigi

macrumors 6502
Apr 29, 2003
348
0
Connecticut
Great

If this is true, I can finally see what I spent so much money on (it is such a wierd feeling buying something you haven't seen or used). I'll be going to my local apple store tomorrow, to see if it is true.

--Waluigi
 
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Macette

macrumors 6502
Mar 5, 2002
472
0
Melbourne
oh i want it i just want it soooo much please apple be shipping now pleeeaasssseeeee.

[although my reliable local apple reseller said to me today that while the two lower models are expected in Australian stores by the end of August, the 2ghzs probably won't see the light of day here until the END OF SEPTEMBER. it might just be the death of me.
 
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SeaFox

macrumors 68030
Jul 22, 2003
2,560
837
Somewhere Else
Originally posted by iJon
uh huh sure. i have a feeling apple will ship 1 of every model to some store, just to say they kept their promise.
iJon

Duh. They aren't going to have the machine in stock to buy at the stores. Everyone who had a preorder in after the keynote will be pissed that you could get the G5 at the stores first.

They're going to ship demo units to every store so folks can put in orders like everyone else. Once the preorders are on their way, then they'll make it available to buy at the Apple Stores.
 
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mxpiazza

macrumors 6502a
Apr 22, 2003
597
0
cleveland, oh
i have a BTO dual preordered, and i'm still shipping on or before 8/29.... how about other people? anyone order a 1.6 or 1.8? what does yours say? i want mine now!
 
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Pinto

macrumors newbie
Mar 19, 2003
9
0
New Zealand
Originally posted by mvc
w00t! Shake that aluminium booty baby! Now how long before they get to the bottom of the world so I can get one! :)

If by bottom of the world you mean "Down Under" then the official word today is 3rd or 4th week of August, in VERY limited quantities.
 
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iJon

macrumors 604
Feb 7, 2002
6,569
158
Originally posted by SeaFox
Duh. They aren't going to have the machine in stock to buy at the stores. Everyone who had a preorder in after the keynote will be pissed that you could get the G5 at the stores first.

They're going to ship demo units to every store so folks can put in orders like everyone else. Once the preorders are on their way, then they'll make it available to buy at the Apple Stores.
this month most stores will have some to sell, even if you didnt preorder, so people still do have a chance. demo models will usually come along with the first shipment. it all depends on how many apple ships and how many people put their name on a list at a reseller or whatever. but i have this tingly feeling inside apple is gonna pull a 17" powerbook move on us.

iJon
 
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wizard

macrumors 68040
May 29, 2003
3,854
571
I don't know about you guys, but I think the writer was a bit optimistic about the 22 year olds. More likely some 15 year old wil spit out some app next year and we will all say "why didn't I think of that".

To be honest though I really want to see one of these machines up close. I might be able to convince myself to orde one as is instead of waiting for the improved models.

DAve
 
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Mav451

macrumors 68000
Jul 1, 2003
1,657
1
Maryland
a lil bit OT, but i was just in the Compusa store in my area and for the VERY first time i saw an Apple Representative at Compusa, donned in a black "vintage" cap with the classic rainbow colored apple insignia on the front. Oh and an apple shirt of course.

I was just laughin to myself b/c the old man that the Apple rep was talking to really didn't care about the architectural differences or the manufacturing problems with motorola...

all the old man wanted to know was if he coudl move his old picture over from the G3, but the guy kept on talkin about the G5 and how it would be the fastest computer.

In the end, the old man settled on a 1ghz IMac (it's a beautiful screen - he said).

None, the less i remember wanting to ask him when Compusa would be getting the G5's, but when i turned around (usually end up playing around with stuff in the store) he had disappeared. They gotta be coming soon though--if the apple rep is an indication of things to come :)
 
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photohead

macrumors member
Mar 14, 2003
74
0
Pasadena, CA
this is some exciting news/? but who thinks I should wait untill the second round of G5's come out?? That has been the the word in the past....but now people are saying that it might be safe to buy one now?? comments ?? advice??

N
 
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Waluigi

macrumors 6502
Apr 29, 2003
348
0
Connecticut
Originally posted by photohead
this is some exciting news/? but who thinks I should wait untill the second round of G5's come out?? That has been the the word in the past....but now people are saying that it might be safe to buy one now?? comments ?? advice??

N

I was going to wait til Rev. B, until my boss (who has worked with computers for 30 years, and knows everything about computers) decided to get one. If someone like him though it was safe to get a Rev. A, that was good enough for me.

I'd say GO FOR IT!

--Waluigi
 
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