"The old king is dead. Long live the king."

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by tevion5, Jan 7, 2015.

  1. tevion5 macrumors 68000

    tevion5

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    #1
    When the Macintosh 128K was introduced back in 1984, it used the 68K processing architecture. This lasted ten years until the first PowerPC Mac's, namely the 6100, 7100 and 8100, were introduced in 1994. This second era would last 12 years until 2006, when the unthinkable took place and the first Intel Macintosh's entered the world. This began the 3rd era or Mac processor architecture and this is the current state of affairs.

    While both transitions were necessary, the major change occurred relatively quickly and to a little surprise in both cases. With the Intel architecture currently only around for 9 years as of this new year, it is highly conceivable that this current era could be facing and end in the not too distant future. With Apple's continued consumer focus, desire to increase battery life and portability of laptops, as well as designing arguably the most powerful ARM bases chips on the market, leaving Intel never seemed less ridiculous.

    What are some of your thoughts on the likelihood of anther transition in the foreseeable future? I think it is an interesting topic to discuss!
     
  2. PowerMac G4 MDD macrumors 68000

    PowerMac G4 MDD

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    #2
    ARM processors will really need to step their game up. If so, it COULD be something more commonly-seen in full-on desktop/laptop computers. However, what about the Intel M processors? I feel like Intel processors will become increasingly efficient (in terms of power usage and heat), so as to eradicate any thoughts that an ARM processor could step up and take the throne.

    Another thing to add is that battery life has already gotten insanely great. Apparently the current rMBPs have awesome battery life, lasting hours---even with CPU stress. In terms of personal accounts, my brother told me that someone was watching a Flash video for hours, on their current rMBP, and the battery still had hours of charge left on it. I know results vary, but efficiency with power usage is getting much better, and I don't see a reason for Apple to want to go to ARM (unless ARM becomes great, like Intel eventually did).

    I really hope there won't be another switch though... that would be catastrophic. And seeing as though things are LOVED to be made obsolete, I hope there isn't some crazy cut-off soon for the older generations of Intel processors.
     
  3. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    #3
    Heh... there would be a completely new realm, like this, of Intel. PowerPC would be dumped in the mix of the "Apple Collectors" forums.
     
  4. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #4
    Nil. There's no competing architecture that's likely to topple x86-64.

    Intel have made massive strides as regards power consumption in the last few years. ARM doesn't provide any tangible benefits for a desktop/laptop use. I'm a one of the generation of Brits brought up on Acorn Computers - they created the ARM architecture for the first RISC-based home computer in the late 80s, so you could say I'm biased, but I still recognise it's a no go.

    Microsoft have effectively piloted the idea already with Windows RT, and they've bled red ink so far...
     
  5. bse5150 macrumors 6502

    bse5150

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    #5
    I don't see Apple going through another processor migration anytime soon. Intel is where it's at. :D
     
  6. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

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    #6
    I sincerely doubt we'll see another "transition" or "migration" unless Intel architecture as a whole appears to be spiraling downhill.

    Then we might see Apple as one of the first to jump ship - but not before it's already happening.

    I consider it far more likely that Apple would abandon "OS X" and the Mac platform entirely, leaving just the iOS/mobile platform. No ARM-based Mac Pro, no ARM-based iMac, no ARM-based MacBook Pro. No ARM-port of the "desktop" OS X.

    We might see an "iPad Pro" with a "nearly-as-fast-as-what-was-in-the-MacBook-Pro", with an accessory keyboard (similar in style to the Microsoft Surface Pro 3,) and it might happen after OS X and iOS have gotten even more similar to each other, so that it almost feels like the end-result of "convergence," but it would be a hard-end to the Mac, not a smooth transition. No old Intel OS X copy of Photoshop would run on it (as has been possible will all three previous transitions - PPC could run 68k, OS X could run Classic, Intel could run PPC.) It would be the end of the Mac and OS X.

    I don't foresee that coming soon, though. MINIMUM a decade away. (Of course, the computing industry can shift fast, but even with something insane and unforeseen happening in the next 12 months, I don't see Apple abandoning OS X on Intel for at LEAST 5 years.)
     
  7. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #7
    I can't see Apple abandoning OS X (and hence the hardware it runs on) as it's the platform that hosts the developer tools for iOS. It would be Apple shooting themselves in the foot...
     
  8. gooser macrumors 6502

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    #8
    who knows what the future will bring but i don't see any reason for it happening.
     
  9. tampasteve macrumors 6502

    #9
    I like ARM, but I do not see this happening soon, maybe eventually. That said, to think that Apple does not already have parallel OSX ARM systems would be folly now that we know they had Intel OSX being developed in parallel to PPC.
     
  10. Gamer9430 macrumors 68020

    Gamer9430

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    #10
    Apple could dump intel for amd, but they are the same architecture so it wouldn't make a difference aside from it being a different brand.
     
  11. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #11
    It would be a regression. They lose features like QuickSync, Thunderbolt and performance per watt is much worse on AMD.
     
  12. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    #12
    If Apple change to ARM, they're dead to me.
    If Apple change to AMD, they're dead to me.

    Apple are already dead to me at the moment because of Yosemite so I guess it wouldn't matter. Either way, I'm not partaking in another architecture change. I'm fed up of Apple ditching support for my old applications and their constant jumping from one chipset to another doesn't help matters one bit. I can't be arsed with the hassle.
     
  13. tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

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    #13
    I have noticed on several threads over the past year that you seem to have exclusively negative opinions on almost everything :p

    What exactly is so bad about Yosemite that it makes Apple "dead" to you? I collect Apple products sold as my Apple II Plus, and my first Mac had Snow Leopard. I quite like Yosemite. Performance is very good on my 2011 MBP and I've encountered no noticeable bugs since it came out of Beta. To me, Lion felt bloated and full of bugs, and Mountain Lion was like a great big patch. Mavericks was much more efficient and had practical enhancements to performance with no gimmicks. Yosemite feels like a continuation of this Mavericks approach, and I am personally very happy with Mr. Federighi's work. What major problems have you had with it I'd like to know?

    ----------

    I'm pretty sure something like a 6100 is already considered a little too old for this forum. ;)

    ----------

    Weren't the initial iPhone OS dev tools available on PPC?
     
  14. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #14
    I'm not too familiar with the lead-up to the 68K-PPC transition, so won't count on it.

    I am a little bit more familiar with the PPC-Intel transition, so here are some of my thoughts on it:

    As much as I love G5 processors, they are not very energy efficient. There was also the supposed "stalling" development of the platform. Many of us have seen the keynote where Steve Jobs proclaimed that the G5 would break 3ghz within a few years(I forget how many). They only ever managed to get to 2.7ghz, and that was with liquid cooling. For G5s that actually made it into production, 2.3ghz was the practical limit for air cooling as the 2.5ghz models(both the dual processor and the quad core) were water cooled. Of course, that's not to say that as G5s improved, these numbers might also have been improved, but as I understand it things weren't happening at the pace that Apple wanted.

    There was also the fact AIM never got the G5 cool enough/efficient enough to get it into a laptop. Without seeing the numbers, my "gut" guess is that Apple specifically-and the industry as a whole-probably sells more laptops than desktops these days. The fact that Apple laptops were effectively a generation behind their desktops was of some significance. Granted, the last generation G4s used in the last few Powerbooks were superb processors, but they still weren't G5s.

    The Intel transition made a lot of sense at the time, as it essentially fixed the above problems overnight. Granted, most people don't really put so much focus on raw clock speeds anymore, but Intel processors get a lot done even sticking around 2-2.5ghz.

    Plus, Intel is only continuing to get better. A majority of the "Atom" series processors use well under 10W, and the even more fully featured i3/i5/i7 mobile processors have very impressive energy consumption features as well.

    There's a lot to like about ARM, but Intel isn't exactly resting on their laurels(unlike AIM seemed to be in the mid-2000s) so I'm not sure that there would necessarily be a compelling reason to switch at least as long as things continue on their current path.

    All of that said, Tiger was the first publicly released version of OS X to run on Intel but Apple said at the time that they'd been running it on Intel processors basically since day 1. It wouldn't surprise me if there's a lab at Cupertino that has Yosemite running on an ARM computer. I wouldn't be too surprised either if the same room has Yosemite running on a Power 7 or Power 8 based computer. Of course, I'm strictly speculating on all of this, but I don't see Apple as "putting all their eggs in one basket" either.
     
  15. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    #15
    Yosemite has been the first OS I have ditched due to looks alone.

    I'll skip over the WiFi issues, compatibility issues and the memory management problems I've had. OS X appears to have these with every release for some reason.

    I can't stand the contrast and default font of Yosemite. It's blinding and literally puts my eyes in strain and gives me headaches. Probably forgivable if I were 80 or something, but I'm 21! On top of that it feels terribly inconsistent and padded out with a wishy washy transparent blur of colour as windows mount up and bleed into each other. Everything is harder to notice, everything is harder to read. With the way it looks, I find it hard to use and literally painful for me to use for a long period of time.

    Apple have been losing me on the Mac/OS X side since Lion which introduced a lot of changes and features that seemed pointless and more of a pain in the arse than useful. They bleeded iOS functionality into OS X, meaning OS X would now meddle with the saving of my files, what occurred on startup and how applications behaved. That was the first large step because not only did it ruin my workflow but also a fair amount of my documents due to how autosave behaved. Yosemite was the second.

    Windows XP was ugly as hell but it wasn't how it looked that ruined it for me, it was the appalling amount of bugs and issues it had. XP is what made me buy a Mac for high school. Eleven years on, to me, it seems the tables have turned. Windows 8.x is amazingly stable and despite some initial design issues that alienated PC users, I feel it is on the right track and Windows 10 looks set to continue that. OS X presents me with compatibility and bug driven issues with every upgrade whereas Windows just seems... to work.

    Doesn't mean I dislike all Apple products or don't use any. I have an iPod Classic, iMac G4, PowerBook G4 and two Airport Extremes, all that I love. And maybe, in the future, Apple will sort out OS X for me or release something else that I really want. I guess we'll see. :)
     
  16. eyoungren, Jan 8, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2015

    eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #16
    I know you were quoting roadbloc, but I'll chime in here…

    I use a Mac Pro at work in a mixed network environment (I'm the system admin). The Mac came with Lion, but I quickly upgraded to ML. Between ML, Mavericks and Yosemite, ML has been the most stable and most like Leopard, which is what I am comfortable with seeing as that's the only OS X version I run on my Macs at home. Which is not saying much for it's stability in that environment compared to Leopard.

    Anyway, Mav killed folder labels. Since 2004, we have used folder labels at work to determine the category of our advertisements. Now, all you have is a little ball and if you move the column over so that the file and folder names do not truncate you lose that.

    Both ML, Mav and Yosemite (and I assume Lion) do not allow you to size a window down below a certain width. This is extremely a PITA for me as even though I have multiple displays folder windows take up an extraordinary amount of space now.

    Mav also had the problem with a poor implementation of SMB2. That didn't matter with our 2003 Small Business Server because it only had SMB1 which forced Mav to comply. No issues. But once we upgraded to Windows 2008 Server all hell broke loose with our InDesign files. On my Mac Pro at least. The G5 is limited under Leopard to SMB1 so it didn't have an issue.

    Saves of ID files from the server lost connection which would cause ID to quit out. All your changes were lost. The only solution was to either disconnect each day and then reconnect the following day or to force a CIFS connection which then forced SMB1.

    Yosemite fixed that as well as my Finder instability (Mav was like Tiger for me in that Finder was crashing all the time). However, my same issues with folder labels, width of windows as well as this iOS GUI still continue. I also had a Bluetooth issue when I first installed Yosemite. A known bug, it killed BT and my USB ports! Fixed now, but a real irritant when you come in each day and the Mac is unresponsive.

    I used Yosemite because I need to stay current, but honestly if I could go back to the G5 I would. Leopard is far more stable in a mixed network environment than any other version of OS X I have used.

    Oh, did I mention? I can't print from my Mac Pro without using a G4 running Leopard that serves as our print server. Yeah, no Appletalk on this MP!
     
  17. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #17
    If you haven't done so yet, I'd suggest trying dark mode and checking "reduce transparency" under Universal Access. Between these two, I find Yosemite a lot more tolerable, although admittedly it's far from my favorite OS that Apple has made appearance-wise.
     
  18. wiredup72 macrumors regular

    wiredup72

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    #18
    I don't see anything on the pipeline that could derail Intel and Apple right now.

    Maybe if Nano-tech leads to nano-transistors, then we may see a new breakthrough in chip architecture. A fractal based three dimensional chip with nano-transistors with billions times the processing power of current chips. Can you see it :eek:

    Battery life has become insanely good? Hyperbole a little? Insanely good would mean laptops that could last days with heavy usage; phones that could last weeks with heavy usage; at least IMNSHO
     
  19. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #19
    Can't recall to be honest. Quite likely as they built it on top of XCode, and Leopard was still current at the time.

    Anyway PPC support wasn't the point, I was replying to a post forecasting the death of OS X, not a system architecture. No-one will be developing apps on iOS. iPads are a media consumption companion device, not a computer.
     
  20. tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

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    #20
    Oh I am totally with you there. I don't see Apple leaving OS X as soon as the next processor architecture. Unless of course Microsoft starts taking a lead in OS design, instead of making something like Windows 10 which includes numerous features Mac users have enjoyed since Leopard...

    ----------

    Definitely. On my MBP, I think the dark mode looks much easier on the eyes as well as it suits the aesthetic of my laptop a lot better. The black border around the screen matches the darker dock and menu bar.

    I will agree that the aesthetics of Yosemite are a little off point, but for the most part I like the new design. A much better implementation of the new flat look than iOS 7. My major focus for complimenting Mavericks and Yosemite have been clever performance improvements, especially for older Macs. All the new features and looks are not something I entirely approve of. Although, I do enjoy being able to manage calls and texts from my Mac over Wi-fi. I've never been one to cheer over Facebook integration however.
     
  21. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #21
    I have a friend who charges his Galaxy Note once a week...of course he's also using an aftermarket battery that's about 2 1/2 times the thickness of the phone itself.
     
  22. torana355 macrumors 68020

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    #22
    Why use appletalk?? Just print direct to ip.
     
  23. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #23
    Because printing direct to IP over our network results in skipped lines from our printer.

    I.e, there are small little gaps in the printout.

    Second, while one Xanté Accel-a-Writer 3G is IP capable (it has a 4G brain) the other Xanté does not have IP printing capability. It's Appletalk only.

    I work for a newspaper and we print ads and newspaper pages on 8.5x11 and 11x17. Our Xanté printers are the only professional laser printers I know of that do Tabloid.
     

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  24. torana355 macrumors 68020

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    #24
    Fair enough, im surprised that there are no direct to ip printers available that can do the kind of work you need. What about a Xerox Phaser series laser printer?
     
  25. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #25
    Well, I can print to our fax machines fine, but I can't use those for regular proof printing as those are heavily used by the rest of the employees around here and they only print 8.5x11.

    Thanks for the suggestion on the printer! Once these printers finally die (whenever that is, they've been going since before I got here 10 years ago) I can make a suggestion to my boss. He's been avoiding thinking about what will happen when they die. :D

    The other issue is that a purchase of anything around here takes a while.

    We went about four years between the time our server was diagnosed as dying and replacement if that tells you anything.
     

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