Quad PowerMacs?

Ge4-ce

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2003
190
0
Belgium
Well...

If it is true.. THIS ROCKS!

But probably not.. And if so.. when and what will they cost?

same old questions.. same old story..
 

Some_Big_Spoon

macrumors 6502a
Jun 17, 2003
855
0
New York, NY
ugh..

Just because you have 4 processors in a machine doesn't mean it's any faster, and, in truth, the dual processors really make a deifference when the software is dual processor aware..
 

Ge4-ce

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2003
190
0
Belgium
Re: ugh..

Originally posted by Some_Big_Spoon
Just because you have 4 processors in a machine doesn't mean it's any faster, and, in truth, the dual processors really make a deifference when the software is dual processor aware..
About all the major software I use is Multiple processor aware, even OS X is multithreaded.. So bring it on!!

Final Cut Pro, Shake, Combustion, LW, Photoshop (some but not all things), AfterFX, ...
 

ITR 81

macrumors 65816
Oct 24, 2003
1,052
0
Why not?

Double your pleasure Double your fun Double your power with a new quad powered G5.

Now where is my Ram Doubler.
 

Rincewind42

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2003
620
0
Orlando, FL
Re: ugh..

Originally posted by Some_Big_Spoon
Just because you have 4 processors in a machine doesn't mean it's any faster, and, in truth, the dual processors really make a deifference when the software is dual processor aware..
Well, all native Mac OS X GUI applications spawn more than one thread. While it's true that most of these threads are typically idle, it does mean that you have less interrupting whatever thread is currently monopolizing a CPU and the potential to have far more happening at once productively. Of course for this to be truly productive you need an ultra wide memory system (current G5's dual channel ddr400 may do for light to medium work, but not for something like video editing in a quad system).

Remember - Mac OS X always has the CPUs in the box doing something and there is always something for them to do.
 

CmdrLaForge

macrumors 601
Feb 26, 2003
4,417
2,559
around the world
I guess that this is not true. Its just like the rumors about dual processor powerbooks.

But on the other side. Maybe its true and then they would rock !

I see a little chance.
 

nate13

macrumors 6502
Feb 16, 2004
301
95
Fargo, ND
ultimate multitasking?

Ok, im no comp wiz so this may be totally wrong but... couldnt you assign a processor to different uses/ apps? And have certian apps marked to be assigned to a totally seperate processor?
ex:
#1-Core system/ finder
#2-Photoshop/ plugins
#3-Dreamweaver/ Fireworks
#4-All those other little apps (safari, mail, exct...)

but anyways, i hope apple is reading these roumer pages cause that would be a first in personal computing that would pretty much landmark apple.
 

tom.96

Suspended
Jun 13, 2003
161
0
I might be wrong, but didn't moto bring out a quad proc mac when clones were around? I have a feeling it had four 132mhz procs or something similar.

Does anyone have any info on how this machine performed with Mac apps? I know it was a long time ago, but it would be interesting to know people's experiences with this.

Please note - this is only from my memory, I may be wrong so please correct me if I am!
 

praetorian_x

macrumors member
Jan 6, 2003
83
0
Hmmmm

I'd prefer to see IBM getting the memory controller on the chip before they go to a quad architecture. The 970's have serious bandwidth, but if they are running them through a single memory controller we won't see the scaling that we would like.

See here for opteron scaling:

http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/ProductInformation/0,,30_118_8796_8800~70023,00.html

This is why pretty much everyone is accepting that embedded memory controllers are the way to go.

Anyway, I think the rumor is wrong. This just isn't low hanging fruit at this point. Dual cores would be a lot easier.

Cheers,
prat
 

wPod

macrumors 68000
Aug 19, 2003
1,654
0
Denver, CO
isnt there some technology comming out where the chips have a dual core. . . thus you could get 4 procesors out of 2 chips? so that might be feasable. . . but the question would be why? are there really enough people who would buy that kind of power? or even use that kind of power?
 

Rincewind42

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2003
620
0
Orlando, FL
Re: ultimate multitasking?

Originally posted by nate13
Ok, im no comp wiz so this may be totally wrong but... couldnt you assign a processor to different uses/ apps? And have certian apps marked to be assigned to a totally seperate processor?
ex:
#1-Core system/ finder
#2-Photoshop/ plugins
#3-Dreamweaver/ Fireworks
#4-All those other little apps (safari, mail, exct...)

but anyways, i hope apple is reading these roumer pages cause that would be a first in personal computing that would pretty much landmark apple.
Mac OS X already does something like that - but dynamically. So if App A request 100% of the CPU, OS X will give it as much as it can. If there is more than one CPU, it may give that App the entire CPU. If it requests more than one CPU, it may give it as many as it can while still giving time to other apps.

The way it does this is with threads - an application can have more than one thread, and the OS schedules threads to CPUs, so if there is more than one CPU each thread can be on a different one. Threads compete for CPU resources, so when a thread doesn't need the CPU (which is most of the time for most threads) other threads can use the CPU. Eventually even threads that monopolize the CPU can't keep it forever though, so your system is always responsive.

Originally posted by tom.96
I might be wrong, but didn't moto bring out a quad proc mac when clones were around? I have a feeling it had four 132mhz procs or something similar.

Does anyone have any info on how this machine performed with Mac apps? I know it was a long time ago, but it would be interesting to know people's experiences with this.

Please note - this is only from my memory, I may be wrong so please correct me if I am!
Daystar (which actually created the original threading implementation on Mac OS 8) produced such a box with as many as 4 (I think) 166Mhz 604e CPUs.
 

Rincewind42

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2003
620
0
Orlando, FL
Originally posted by wPod
isnt there some technology comming out where the chips have a dual core. . . thus you could get 4 procesors out of 2 chips? so that might be feasable. . . but the question would be why? are there really enough people who would buy that kind of power? or even use that kind of power?
At the very least it is interesting because it makes it cheaper to make Dual processor boxes (think consumer dualie). For pros it would be the best way to get quad CPU performance levels as well. The POWER5 based PPC is rumored to be dual core, so along with symmetric multithreading a pair of the chips could appear to be 8 CPUs to the OS, which could give some huge performance improvements.

Of course I don't think that we'll be seeing Quad G5 machines from Apple, and even dual core prolly won't happen until at least next year.
 

iriejedi

macrumors 6502a
Oct 4, 2000
814
119
Nor Cal
fuel to fire

Beofre the duals came out someone lekaed/showed/faked? a screen shot of a prototype quad processor G5 (G4?)'s usage monitor application (an OS X utility).

I'm not sure of the actual name of the OS X program utility but it has system usage in the form of verticle "RPM" type gauge.

This one had 4 bars!!!!!

the duals have been out long enough that if this was a prototype back then... - then the rumor of the quad machine could be true...
 

iriejedi

macrumors 6502a
Oct 4, 2000
814
119
Nor Cal
Why we need a quad processor

Originally posted by agreenster
I guess I just dont see the need for 4 processors. Maybe I'm wrong, but unless you are wanting a renderfarm in a box, there's really no need.

Bragging rights!

:cool:
 

0 and A ai

macrumors regular
Jan 12, 2004
171
0
Number one reason why this is not true: BECAUSE ITS NOT NECESSARY

The dual 2 ghz g5 as it is now is great. and when the next revision comes out which is pretty much expected to top out at dual 2.5 it will most likely lay a smack down on a 3.4 p4. Also it most liekly isn't cost effective.

THis reminds me back in the day when we were stuck at 400mhz and 500mhz when this was more beleivalbe. not anymore though.
 

Ge4-ce

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2003
190
0
Belgium
Originally posted by wPod
isnt there some technology comming out where the chips have a dual core. . . thus you could get 4 procesors out of 2 chips? so that might be feasable. . . but the question would be why? are there really enough people who would buy that kind of power? or even use that kind of power?

Believe ME!! Yes there are!! I DO , I DO, I DO!!

I'm in 3D animation.. and then a G10 15Ghz ultra core computer would not be enough!

Movies contain 25 frames per sec. (on average) I have to pull a lot of cleaning tricks out of my sleeve to get a rendertime below 3 minutes/frame!! at this rendertime, a film of 5 minutes would render approximately 15 DAYS 24/7 in wich my computer is useless! (Tibook 1 GHZ)

If I have a Quad G5, running at 2.5 Ghz, this renderwork would have been done in about 2 days!

how about that!!
 

Knox

Administrator
Staff member
Jul 1, 2002
1,267
1
UK
Originally posted by wPod
isnt there some technology comming out where the chips have a dual core. . . thus you could get 4 procesors out of 2 chips? so that might be feasable. . . but the question would be why? are there really enough people who would buy that kind of power? or even use that kind of power?
Of course - just look at the number of people who were clamoring for G5s. There are a lot of places where simple raw power is essential, and the more the better - basically anything that deals with processing large amounts of data, eg image or video editing, scientific or database apps and so on.

With 4 processors/cores you're also going into a different market - no consumer would be interested in that sort of power (at least at the moment) but for business then definately. HP/Sun/IBM all sell servers with large numbers of CPUs in them, and while i doubt Apple would be even looking to compete with them if they release a >2 CPU, or dual-dual core, box, i can still see them being used for the slightly smaller applications.

Originally posted by Rincewind42
Daystar (which actually created the original threading implementation on Mac OS 8) produced such a box with as many as 4 (I think) 166Mhz 604e CPUs.
They went up to 4x 233Mhz it seems -

http://www.lowendmac.com/daystar/plus.html
 

DharvaBinky

macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
89
0
Lafayette, LA
Probably dual processors with 4 VIRTUAL processors

Yes. This is in the roadmap.

Macs are, now, traditionally 2way smp (symmetric multiprocessor)... The IBM PPC 975 (or 976?) is suppsed to have SMT built in (what intel people call Hyperthreading). SMT presents a single processor to the OS as 2 virtual processors (the operating system can't tell the difference), and by mixing the instructions from 2 virtual processors you can keep the chip busier more of the time.

With this in mind, it seems that what they're talking about is a Dual PPC 975 system that has 4 virtual processors. I have Dual Xeon servers at work that appear as quads to windows. Same thing, I bet.

:)

Dharvabinky
 

Rincewind42

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2003
620
0
Orlando, FL
Originally posted by 0 and A ai
Number one reason why this is not true: BECAUSE ITS NOT NECESSARY
If necessary was the dominant force in the computer industry we wouldn't have machines as fast as they are now. The reality is that there is an ever present top end that always needs more speed - and they are what the industry builds toward. And the faster machines get, the more they want to do and the more they need even faster machines.

If Apple put out a Quad G5 there would be a large minority that would open their wallets wide for such a machine. Unfortunately the economies of scale wouldn't allow Apple to make them very cheaply so they wouldn't sell to very many. The fact that economically it is not feasible to make a Quad CPU box for under $3K is the biggest reason why Apple won't make one, not because no one would be able to use that much power.
 

macshark

macrumors member
Oct 8, 2003
96
0
Re: Hmmmm

Originally posted by praetorian_x
I'd prefer to see IBM getting the memory controller on the chip before they go to a quad architecture. The 970's have serious bandwidth, but if they are running them through a single memory controller we won't see the scaling that we would like.

See here for opteron scaling:

http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/ProductInformation/0,,30_118_8796_8800~70023,00.html

This is why pretty much everyone is accepting that embedded memory controllers are the way to go.

Anyway, I think the rumor is wrong. This just isn't low hanging fruit at this point. Dual cores would be a lot easier.

Cheers,
prat
You are right, one of the challenges in being able to scale multiprocessor performance is memory bandwidth. Even with 4 processors, memory bandwidth could become a bottleneck if the same dual channel memory controller in the first PowerMac G5 is used. However, note that each 970 has its own bus, they are not sharing a bus like the Xeon systems, so by scaling the number of channels of the memory controller, it may be possible to come up with a quad-processor system that will have decent performance. This will require either a 4-channel memory controller (which would requires to be DIMMs to be installed in groups of four) or a DDR2 system running at a much higher speed (like 600MHz or 800MHz).

The 90nm G5 does seem to have manageable power consumption (around 40W) so putting 4 of these beasts in a PowerMac enclosure is possible. 4 90nm 970 would generate less heat than a dual Opteron system...

Quad processor could be an interesting platform for very CPU intensive media applications that can be parrallelized. For example, real time editing of MPEG4/H.264 or HD MPEG2 files, rendering of MPEG4 or HD content to DVD, etc.
 

ffakr

macrumors 6502a
Jul 2, 2002
617
0
Chicago
Re: Re: ultimate multitasking?

Originally posted by Rincewind42
Daystar (which actually created the original threading implementation on Mac OS 8) produced such a box with as many as 4 (I think) 166Mhz 604e CPUs.
I'm pretty sure Daystar got up to quad 225MHz. It was called an MP900 or some such thing. I lusted greatly after one. :)

on a totally unrelated note... having an on die mem controller for a quad machine would require 4 banks of descrete (yet interlinked) memory, like the quad opterons. It would also mean extra HT (or HT like) links built into the CPU. It would be the best move for performance, but it would make the mac Much more expensive and it would make the motherboard much larger. Apple could, as an alternative, put in a quad channel (256 bit) memory interface, like you can find in bigger PC servers, and it would have lots of bandwidth. It'd also be a lot cheaper to design, build, and populate with memory.
 
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