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Wow...a Dell that is twice as fast as a dual 1.25gig Quicksilver.On Photoshop, fer goshsakes!! :(

AAARRRGGHHH!! :mad:

We need a new processor and a faster bus speed. NOW! :rolleyes:
 

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Dont look so suprised. Even the Dual Athlon machine we sell at work doesn amount to twice the performance really.

2x Athlon XP MP 2000+ does not equal 1 P4 4GHz, it equals about 1 P4 3.4Ghz, give or take, depending on the benchmark.

Someone here mentioned that they thought the PowerBooks were a stopgap, but they are nothing compared to the current PowerMacs.

--PB
 

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Is speed THAT important???? I have seen various reports, and the difference is in matters of seconds. Personally, I would give up speed for efficiency. I would like to make educational DVDs of case studies for diagnostic/prescriptive literacy instruction. I envision iMovie (on either a PowerBook or iMac) and then FCP if I gain the necessary proficiency. I could buy this latest Dell with my grant money, but I don't see how it is better than a Mac (faster maybe, but better????????).
 

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RtC, but there is quality of life as well as quantity of life. I haven't a clue what a Quake test is all about, yet is it going to be that problematic for the average user if my Mac undertakes this test in 27 second and you P4 does it in 20 seconds? Granted, for power uses who NEED this power for their research or work, then speed and power are factors. However, for the person like myself, who relies on the computer for web teaching, email, word processing and someday (soon I hope) creating DVDs, why would I need a PowerMac of a top-of-the-line Dell et al?

How is the weather out your way?
 

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Sorry to hear about the 50cm. We received our 10cm and that was followed by 30mm of rain. So, much of the snow is gone. I am hoping for a green Christmas like last year, and not the 100cm of snow we had on the ground by Christmas two years ago.
 

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The Hyperthreading 3GHz P4 chip requires a special enabled motherboard and (currently rare and expensive) special RAM chips. Put this same processor in an "ordinary" motherboard and the performance drops significantly (no Hyperthread suppport).

Take your current high-performance PC, and replace only the MB & Processor and you've spent more than $CDN 2K, add a bunch for even a minimal RAM stick of 256K.
If you decide to spend only the $CDN 1200 for the processor alone (it will pop right in to many P4 motherboards) you will get a minimal performance improvement (tests suggest +20% over a 2GHz P4).

I configured a DELL from the Canadian website using the 3GHz chip and 1 GB RAM (the test system under review is apparenlty unavailable, no Gigabit Ethernet, for example) and a Pioneer DVD drive. I chose options based on what was equivalent to a stock configured G4DP 1.25. The price came to:
Dimension 8200 3Ghz P3 $ 4672
Shipping $ 139
Subtotal $ 4811

In any case, it comes to more than the $US 3K price DELL managed to come up with for their configuration.

Apparently the DELL system that was reviewed was "stripped" of a few items (say, a Windows works suite) that are not available as delete options from DELL to ordinary (non-reviewer type) customers. Go figure.

Strangely, the article doesn't give any benchmarks for PhotoShop actions that doesn't favor the P3/3Gig, which is strange since from the article itself, DELL says that some PS operations are actually slowed by having the hyperthreading enabled. The After Effects book which provided the benchmark suite is apperently a Windows Only book (according to the details at Amazon).

They dismissed the OS differences by saying that you will be "in After Effects for 8 hours" so actual interface is irrelevant and apparently has no affect on productivity or anything else.

Their results comparing the 2.53Gig P4 (part of the same review) in PhotoShop contradict the results of other Mac/PC tests, which at a minimum raises the question as to what, exactly the tests suites in all these reviews are designed to measure.

The test is interesting and Intel's new chip will prove to be a solid performer, but at this level of performance (essentially, with software, we're talking a $10K workstation here, on either platform) I would prefer to hear from some professional users rather than an obviously PC-centric review site with questionable objectivity (and no, I wouldn't consider Apple objective either).

Compared to the recent X-Serve cluster built by the Jet Propulsion Lab at NASA, which found excellent performance from 33 1G X-Serves (1/5 Terraflop) running identical test suites (in Linux) as used on Intel clusters, the JPL was particularly suprised at the results as the test complexity and number of servers was increased. For the first time ever on any platform, they could find no evidence of any limit to the scaleability of X-Serve based systems. In other words, they don't slow down as you add more processors, unlike Intel-based installations.

Scientists building Linux Supercomputers run objective tests with few, if any variables.

This is essentially impossible to do when running different versions of PhotoShop on different OS's; but it certainly doesn't help if the actions tested are designed to favor one architecture over another.
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Dr.G.:
Is speed THAT important???? I have seen various reports, and the difference is in matters of seconds. Personally, I would give up speed for efficiency. I would like to make educational DVDs of case studies for diagnostic/prescriptive literacy instruction. I envision iMovie (on either a PowerBook or iMac) and then FCP if I gain the necessary proficiency. I could buy this latest Dell with my grant money, but I don't see how it is better than a Mac (faster maybe, but better????????).<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Given the post above, the question that begs to be asked of you, Dr. G. is; have you purchased your new iMac yet? Having read your past posts, you seem to keep delaying your purchase for the next big thing from Apple. It seems to me what Apple currently offers will more than suit your needs, so why not take the plunge? Prices are the lowest for current Macs since they were introduced, to boot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by gordguide:<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Comments inline.


I configured a DELL from the Canadian website using the 3GHz chip and 1 GB RAM (the test system under review is apparenlty unavailable, no Gigabit Ethernet, for example) and a Pioneer DVD drive. I chose options based on what was equivalent to a stock configured G4DP 1.25. The price came to:
Dimension 8200 3Ghz P3 $ 4672
Shipping $ 139
Subtotal $ 4811


I poked around dell.ca, and you can't get a Precision workstation with a P4 3.0GHz (yet). Dell's Dimension line is for home users, so that would explain the lack of things like Gigabit Ethernet, as well as the inability to get rid of productivity software (Dell doesn't bundle Office with the Precision workstations). You can build an equivalent system at dell.com.


In any case, it comes to more than the $US 3K price DELL managed to come up with for their configuration.
Apparently the DELL system that was reviewed was "stripped" of a few items (say, a Windows works suite) that are not available as delete options from DELL to ordinary (non-reviewer type) customers. Go figure.


Actually, 4800CDN is roughly equal to 3000USD (exchange is about 1.6CDN per 1USD).


They dismissed the OS differences by saying that you will be "in After Effects for 8 hours" so actual interface is irrelevant and apparently has no affect on productivity or anything else.


As far as the reviewer is concerned, if he's spending most of his time with one application anyway, why not go with a Dell instead of an Apple and reap the productivity benefits that come with a faster machine?


The test is interesting and Intel's new chip will prove to be a solid performer, but at this level of performance (essentially, with software, we're talking a $10K workstation here, on either platform) I would prefer to hear from some professional users rather than an obviously PC-centric review site with questionable objectivity (and no, I wouldn't consider Apple objective either).


I don't think Digital Video Editing counts as a "PC-centric" website, especially when they title a review of the Windtunnel PowerMacs Dualies and Droolies.


Compared to the recent X-Serve cluster built by the Jet Propulsion Lab at NASA, which found excellent performance from 33 1G X-Serves (1/5 Terraflop) running identical test suites (in Linux) as used on Intel clusters, the JPL was particularly suprised at the results as the test complexity and number of servers was increased. For the first time ever on any platform, they could find no evidence of any limit to the scaleability of X-Serve based systems. In other words, they don't slow down as you add more processors, unlike Intel-based installations.


According to the TOP500 list for November 2002, two of the top ten supercomputers are Intel-based clusters. I think that vouches for how well Intel-based installations can scale.
 

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Bjornbro, I am not waiting for the next big thing, although I am waiting. The reasons are personal -- I have absolutely no time to spend on research right now, in that I have to teach three courses this semester, seven in the winter, and two in the spring (a normal teaching load is six courses an academic year). Thus, why get an iMac or PowerBook now when I won't be able to start on what I want one of these for in the first place. Initially, my wait was forced upon me, since the money was put into the wrong account and it took 11 months to find it (mind you, I am the only Glassman at the University, I am the only Glassman in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and I might be the only Glassman east of Toronto -- there is another Marc Glassman in TO). Thus, why rush. I would rather wait and learn from all of you out there in ehMacLand than to have a computer that I can use only for email and webcourse work on WebCT.
 

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I couldn't give a toss anymore about speed comparisons. Get what you're comfortable with. Get what'll do the job. Get what you like and then be happy with what you have.

I'm a Mac user because of the industry I work within. I like the machines and the OS. Combined, they allow me to do my job well. In the end, the computers justify themselves by making money and being productive, not because of a split second of difference in terms of real-world speed or a higher clock speed. Most of us never use the processor to full potential anyway. That's just my opinion.
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Dr.G.:and I might be the only Glassman east of Toronto -- there is another Marc Glassman in Toronto<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I remember Marc from my NFB days. Marc is a great guy and has a very funky bookstore.
 

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Britnell, yes, that's the one. I dropped by his bookstore years ago to say hello, but he was gone for the day. Not sure if the store is there anymore, but at least I am still here in St. John's.
 

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Dr. G.,

Mine eyes have been opened, thank you for the response. I try not to be an early adopter myself, so I'm waiting for the 17" iMac Rev B.

Bjornbro
 

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Bjornbro, what do you feel might be included in the 17" revision?
 

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jfpoole wrote:
" ... I poked around dell.ca, and you can't get a Precision workstation with a P4 3.0GHz (yet). ..."

Well, you can if you just go to the Dimension 8200 buy page, where, lo and behold, the 3Gig P4 is one of your processor options. That's what I did. As for me not going to the "proper" Business page, I just went to the first one I could find, to see if the 3Gig P4 was actually available,

" ...Actually, 4800CDN is roughly equal to 3000USD (exchange is about 1.6CDN per 1USD). ..."

I deal in US/Canadian dollars on a daily basis. I converted at US 1.55 which is within +/- half cent I of what I am able to sell US funds for in the last 60 days at the cheque rate (the closest to the wholesale rate you can get from a bank). Result: US $ 3103.88 Cash rates would be worse, but companies like Dell don't use cash to move stuff across the border.

" ... I don't think Digital Video Editing counts as a "PC-centric" website, especially when they title a review of the Windtunnel PowerMacs Dualies and Droolies. ..."

I suppose Linux magazine is a Mac-centric magazine, considering they gave a favorable review to OSX. Reviews should stand alone.

" ... As far as the reviewer is concerned, if he's spending most of his time with one application anyway, why not go with a Dell instead of an Apple and reap the productivity benefits that come with a faster machine? ..."

Why not, indeed. Can't see why his digital video isn't done with Renderman running on x86 Linux, as Pixar does. Who needs eMail?

" ... According to the TOP500 list for November 2002, two of the top ten supercomputers are Intel-based clusters. I think that vouches for how well Intel-based installations can scale. ..."

Since you mentioned it, there isn't a single Apple cluster on the list, although IBM G3's are fairly common. (The X-Serve is too new). Expect the University of Colorado's 30 node X-Serve cluster (purchased this week) to come in at about #320 when the list is revised in 6 months.

As for scalability, we see the #2 HP 1.25GHz x 4096 processors running at 7.7 TerraFlops, 75% of their theoretical performance of 10.2 terraflops. Getting down to JPL's measured performance at 217 GFlops, we see Intel clusters performing (Rmax) at less than 50% of the theoretical maximum (Rpeak). JPL found Rmax to be well over 90% of Rpeak with the X-Serve cluster. In the case of scientific computing, the OS and apps are UNIX based and are essentially identical without regard to platform.

Interestingly, today's Globe and Mail (Winnipeg published National Editon) has a Future Shop ad for a Cicero 3.04GHz system for $2K, although it's impossible to tell if this includes the proper motherboard to support this chips advanced features.
 

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I searched Charlie White's articles on the DV website, and found the 3 PC vs Mac reviews (in each case, the PC smoked the Mac) as well as a plethora of PC applications and DV card reviews.

For an idea of how I, personally, feel a more objective review is undertaken, brows this TechTV review, which takes pains to outline the test suite and the results. It's a little out of date, but the actual review isn't the point, but rather the methodology used, which takes pains to be objective. It was the first result Google game me after the one you linked to (ie second overall).

What I found most interesting is how the PC would have done much better had one test been omitted; I think good old Charlie knows this and structures his tests accordingly.

Tech TV
 

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When you get in to the 3gHz range the speed of light starts to become a limiting factor in performance gains.
Clockless chips will allow significant gains for individual processors but clustering would seem the rational approach to heavy lifting.
Once again, average users use approx 3% of the processing power.
Offloading tasking to the video sub system and faster drives often give significant "perceived" gains - more so than actual processor improvements and Apple - possibly because of Motorola's foot dragging - has been forced to work in those areas of improvement.

What I don't like :rolleyes: is that the "quiet" computing experience has been abandoned in favour of "wind tunnels" :mad:
No wonder Cubes are so popular. Hey dual 800 and dual 1 gHz Cubes with fast vdeo and drives now that's improvement. :D



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