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Old Apr 18th, 2007, 12:05 AM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iMatt
No, the mini has a Core Duo, the iMacs all have Core 2 Duo chips with at least the same clock speed as the top-end mini but mostly faster. All iMacs except the entry-level 17" can take an additional gig of RAM.

I do agree that the mini would be more appealing with a slightly bigger case and better HDD and graphics option. There are probably very good reasons they decided not to go that route.
Oops. Forgot about that... that's about a 20% speed difference from CD to C2D.

The reason for not improving the mini would likely be:
A) The cool, smaller size
B) A faster, better mini would cannibalize iMac sales.
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Old Apr 19th, 2007, 08:44 AM   #52
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Phoboga:

For PPC processor upgrade scores the vendors use xBench 1.1.3 for consistency prior and post upgrade (use the same set of tests) and compatibility with the hardware and software (minimum requirement for 1.3 is OSX 10.3.9). In some cases, for example, there are upgrades across processor families (G3 to G4, etc).

The later version of xBench was created to be optimized for G5 processors, which doesn't apply with the processors under test, so there is no advantage to using the later version. The disadvantage is the scale was revised so that a score of 100 = 2.0 G5 with 10.3.x, which has the result of giving meaninglessly small scores with the original hardware on 1.1.3 where 100 = some other arbitrary value, but I believe the original intent was a 1GHz G4 with 2MB L3 cache.

For reference, my QuickSilver G4 867 with 2MB L3 cache, out of the box scored at around 90 with 1.1.3, and currently (same processor, various other changes) scores around 110+.

Note: It's an unfortunate coincidence but the last stable version is 1.1.3; 1.2 is crap, and then the next stable version is 1.3.0. Thus, read the version numbers carefully as 1.1.3 can be confused with 1.3.

xBench is extremely flawed as a benchmarking tool, and it's problems are more evident when testing across a variety of CPU architectures, and switching versions mid stream only makes it worse.

Use the numbers judiciously but since it is a rather commonly cited benchmark, you won't be able to talk processor or machine speed with Macs and avoid mentioning the scores, so there they are. Pay closer attention to the application suite scores for more real-world idea of the relative differences.

You could try to compare similar systems with both versions (the results site allows choosing both) to get a handle on what typical scores would be, but a stock G4 using 1.3 will score with v1.3.0 somewhere between 20 and 40, typically. Currently (and this is quite common) the results site is down.

Last edited by gordguide; Apr 20th, 2007 at 08:27 AM.
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Old Apr 19th, 2007, 11:47 AM   #53
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The perfect xMac would be a cube-like machine, with ONE agp slot ONE pci slot and all the other bells and whistles of the iMac mini. I too find the Mac mini underpowered, the iMac too limiting and the Mac Pro overkill and would love it if Apple made such a machine.
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Old Apr 20th, 2007, 07:18 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryanc
The xMac has been discussed ad naueum on Ars Technica, and two things are eminently clear:

1) there are a lot of geeks who would like such a machine
2) this is not a profitable market for Apple

The problem is that those of us who are looking for a machine which is powerful, upgradeable, and cheap are the absolutely worst customers for Apple. We want to use our own expertise to reduce Apple's margin. Catering to this market is exactly what has driven Dell, Gateway, et al., to cut their margins so extensively, which has, in turn, made the commodity computer market into a land of scorched earth.

As much as we might like Apple to provide us with an xMac, Apple has little incentive to compete in this market.

So, IMO, it ain't gonna happen.

Cheers
I'm not so sure that your analysis is entirely correct here. My feeling is that a big chunk of the people who might switch from Windows are in that intermediate market. Not people who are building their own boxes but people who will still pay a bit more for a quality built machine, but don't need or can't justify a Mac Pro (or don't have a spare $3 grand kicking around), but really want something more than a mini. Even a Mac Pro with a single Core2 might be a good enough option. Apple has certainly offered PowerMacs in the past that start at prices below $2000.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahMEmon
The perfect xMac would be a cube-like machine, with ONE agp slot ONE pci slot and all the other bells and whistles of the iMac mini. I too find the Mac mini underpowered, the iMac too limiting and the Mac Pro overkill and would love it if Apple made such a machine.
OK, one for me, please.
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Old Apr 20th, 2007, 08:34 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahMEmon
The perfect xMac would be a cube-like machine, with ONE agp slot ONE pci slot and all the other bells and whistles of the iMac mini. I too find the Mac mini underpowered, the iMac too limiting and the Mac Pro overkill and would love it if Apple made such a machine.
I'll take two, but at least with two PCI slots preferably more. Can't be that expensive to add a few PCI slots.
If Apple can sell the 17-inch basic iMac for $1000 (current FutureShop price) and make money - I'm sure they can sell a headless Mac like that for around $1200-$1500 and make even more profit.
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Old Apr 20th, 2007, 10:39 PM   #56
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Agreed on the new cube idea. A micro-tower with a PCI-e16 graphics card slot (the new AGP, sort of...) and one or two PCI slots. It can be done... something just slightly smaller than the Antec Aria PC case, more like a better designed Shuttle brand cube-PC.

Antec.com - New Solution Series
Shuttle XPC | PC Made Modern
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Old Apr 21st, 2007, 12:03 AM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueMax
.............more like a better designed Shuttle brand cube-PC.
"better designed" is right!

Boy - are these boxes ever ugly.
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