Home > IBM > IBM: PowerPC G5 Tuned for Notebooks IBM: PowerPC G5 Tuned for Notebooks Eugenia Loli 2004-06-26 IBM 19 Comments Is a PowerPC G5 notebook at hand? An IBM chip designer details forthcoming power-saving PowerTune technology that will let the processor work in mobile and server platforms. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 19 Comments 2004-06-26 6:27 am Guess next week might bring more insight to this, if there is a iMac rolled out using it. Personaly, I found the article below this one even more interesting. Good read for everyone wondering where the 3.0 ghz 90nm 970s are. 2004-06-26 7:24 am I love my PB and more speed is always welcome… however I would love to see even better battery life as a priority rather than speed improvement over the G4 1.5 GHz currently in the PBs… 2004-06-26 8:59 am So when will IBM stand by their own architecture and their commitment to Linux and sell Linux workstations and Linux desktops/laptops, maybe with a PPC inside? I’d buy a Thinkpad immediately 2004-06-26 9:40 am “So when will IBM stand by their own architecture and their commitment to Linux and sell Linux workstations and Linux desktops/laptops, maybe with a PPC inside? I’d buy a Thinkpad immediately ” IBM has been selling PPC and POWER based machines forever, you can now get the new lines with AIX, OS400 and linux. Problem is that very few people can afford those machines . They just rolled out the new supersweet POWER5 iron… if I only had the cash! 2004-06-26 11:12 am Yeah, with desktop/laptop I meant affordable for consumers or companies that usually buy Linux-based PCs right now. I don’t consider a Power Mac a desktop for that very reason. 2004-06-26 12:35 pm That’s why I’m still using a powerbook g4 500Mhz, talk about low voltage… I only wish they’d come out with a 130nm or 90nm version of it with upgraded motherboard. I agree with you completely in that notebooks should be used more as portable devices as opposed to desktop replacements. On the PC side, my company has given me a centrino 1.6mhz, it’s great, has two batteries and states that I can get 7 hours of battery life depending on certain settings. 2004-06-26 3:53 pm Maybe not, but the world of OSS makes such a transition MUCH easier. Just get NVidia and ATI to provide binaries, I’m sure the Unreal guys could brew up a PPC Linux version quickly. The more PPC out there the cheaper it becomes to manufacture and maybe x86 cna finally go to rest… well one can dream. 2004-06-26 4:17 pm Great articles, but will Apple and IBM be able to pull it off in time? I’ve watch Moto eat away at Apples user base for 3 years with slow processors compared to the rest. 2004-06-26 6:23 pm The PowerPC offers no value proposition to anyone outside of IBM. The chips that Apple uses have the same process dynamics (heat, power) as pretty much every other vendor. The instruction set is nothing special. There are no “killer apps” for PowerPC. If anything, quite the opposite. Apple made a decision to keep their marketplace small and high cost by choosing PowerPC vs. an industry-standard architecture. If Apple had gone AMD64 for instance, they would have had 64-bit notebooks, desktops, workstations, and servers all well over a year ago. Which would have benefitted Apple’s customers. Will someone please tell Apple that only IBM has any real business using PowerPC….. 2004-06-26 6:32 pm Just before the G5 arrived, that some people commented how apple should turn to AMD or even Intel hardware to stop their problems with slower processors* and limited availabilty (sometimes taking months for motorola to produce a new model in sufficient quantities). People here argued how “switching to IBM chips” like G5 and all will change all those. Well, guess again! It didn’t. Still no Powerbook G5 available, and IBM still having problems putting out a 3Ghz G5. And, oh, Steve Jobs mispredicted last year that by now there would be a 3GHz Mac. http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1617135,00.asp * Yeah, in GHz. It is not the ultimate metric, but is sure is A metric. And AMD/Intel are also RISC in their core, so don’t offer the cliched RISC/CISC comparison. In fact Apple could also have gotten rid of all the x86 instruction translation, and got even more juice out. 2004-06-26 6:46 pm I think you are ignoring Apple’s industrial design when you make your claims. there is no AMD-64 laptop that is as thin, light, or quiet as a power book or a centrino laptop. Because of this fact, I do not think that Apple would be in a much different situation as they are now because the G5 is about as hot or a little less than the AMD chips. Apple just puts more emphasis on noise than PC makers do. 2004-06-26 6:50 pm actually, the speed problems with the G4 have been resolved. 2.5 GHz is 2 times faster than the fasted G4 at the time of the switch. and, no, the switch to AMD would not have solved the problem because Apple is restraining themselves because of the box they want to put the chips in, not because it is not possible to make a box that can hold it. Oh, and if you did not notice, Intel and AMD are stuck just as bad as IBM is with the 90nm chip size. 2004-06-26 8:17 pm “Apple made a decision to keep their marketplace small and high cost by choosing PowerPC vs. an industry-standard architecture.” OK, do you know what “industry standard” means? Market dominance in the desktop is not equal to “industry standard.” “If Apple had gone AMD64 for instance, they would have had 64-bit notebooks, desktops, workstations, and servers all well over a year ago. Which would have benefitted Apple’s customers. ” Well w/o the switch they still managed to have 64bit desktops and servers, no 64bit laptops. But then again who wants a 64bit laptop with minimal battery life? Oh, and apple’s customers would have loved the switch to a completely different architecture which means they have to buy all their applications again, and the software vendors would have loved the fact that they have to target yet another completelly different atchitecture. All just to have a 64bit laptop which nobody wants as of now, because all those 64bit laptops are just flying off the shelves right now don’t they? 2004-06-27 12:08 am There are no “killer apps” for PowerPC. Those poor misguided souls wandering around searching for those “killer apps” just never seem to get it. There’s more to a computer than “killer apps.” Apple does just fine without them. If a few people don’t buy in because the “flavor of the month” program isn’t available on a Mac, that’s their problem. The rest of us get along just fine without them. Want to hear something amazing? I have a PC and don’t have a single “killer app” on it. Many people can live their lives just fine without ever having used a “killer app.” You keep chasing the latest fad while I use my computers for something more than an expensive Tamogachi. 2004-06-27 12:56 am Intel is having plenty of problems with the P4 architecture and scaling their semiconductor process. Intel may be in for a harder road ahead than IBM. Intel spent billions (mis)educating people into believing that MHz are all that matter and now intel will have to eat its own words because they’ve pretty much hit the end of the shrink the transistor game. Intel’s main advantage was MHz and that just won’t work for much longer. Intel’s own marketing will have to abandon that soon, some say they have with the pentium M. So what will intel’s advantage be in the future? not performance but price perhaps and installed base. One of those might be gone because more and more people will move to linux. The game is changing because physics is physics and not even intel can change that. Apple, linux on ppc, and IBM have a real shot at gaining some share at the expense of wintel. Will they do it? maybe, maybe not. 2004-06-27 2:45 pm The PowerPC offers no value proposition to anyone outside of IBM. There’s 2 PPC machines in the top 10 supercomputers, looks like there could be 5 next time – 3 based on the 970. The chips that Apple uses have the same process dynamics (heat, power) as pretty much every other vendor. Try finding an x86 which can perform as well as a G4 1GHz and puts out under 10W, you’ll have a very hard time… There are no “killer apps” for PowerPC. If anything, quite the opposite. OS X & iApps. Apple made a decision to keep their marketplace small and high cost by choosing PowerPC vs. an industry-standard architecture. How many people actually buy a computer for a specific CPU? Will someone please tell Apple that only IBM has any real business using PowerPC….. Try telling Apple that, …they still make most of their money on Mac hardware. 2004-06-28 2:09 am I like the iApps idea, but I don’t know if it’s a “killer app”. To me, iApps would have to convince a large number of people to buy a Mac just to get iApps. It’s more like a bonus rather than a “killer app”. I would agree with OSX though. 2004-06-28 12:41 pm 1) PPC is all of IBM’s servers. 2) PPC is going into the new xBox (should someone tell MS that PPC is bad?) 3) PPC is used in a lot of routers and network equipment. 4) PPC is used in a lot of dedicated systems (cars, robotics, …) One of the main features of PPC is its performance/watt ratio and it ability to scale up into the server market. If you look around, you’ll notice that outside the PC market PPC has a greater market share then x86. 2004-06-28 2:39 pm I think the one thing people are missing, IBM has opened their archicture, their eventual aim is not to be the only one using it, they want it as common as the x86. If They play their cards right, anything is possible. With that being said, it would be nice to have a lower priced AIX station. Not the el-cheapo but something around the SUN Blade 150 price mark.