Stevenote aftermath

by Volker Weber

It's been only a few hours since the iMac G5 was still king of the hill. THE new iMac G5, just a few months old, still front page news on The gold standard of PCs, as Walt Mosberg wrote. Next to it the all new PowerBooks G4 with higher resolution screens. Now they are history.

Apple is promising the new machines are between 2 times and 4 times faster than the old ones. Behold, these are processor benchmarks. The rest of the system is hardly 2 to 4 times faster, so it won't feel so much different. And you do need twice the performance to actually feel the difference. Please also keep in mind, that there is a fair number of applications which require the Rosetta emulation layer, amongst them the popular Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop offerings. There is no need to hurry.

Look at the two MacBook Pro machines. You will find that the faster processor, an additional 512 MB of RAM and a 100 GB drive instead of the 80 GB one will set you back $500. Did you check the Yonah prices? That's a measly $53 difference. Looks like Apple has found a neat way to extort some extra money from 1st class travellers. :-)

A lot of people were betting on a new Mac mini as a media center. Has not happened today. Period.

The PowerBook is dead. Long live the MacBook Pro. What do you think? How long will it take, until the iBook is dead, and there will be a MacBook? I'd say 3 months max.


I think that MacBook is the best notebook for developers ever. Regarding MacBook I bet for March.

Egor Margineanu, 2006-01-10

I agree with Egor, March is a good time for a new iBook. But I think it will keep it's name because the "i" isn't Power-associated. The iMac is still called iMac, too...

Matthias Bolten, 2006-01-10

I'd buy a Macbook Pro right now, if someone could tell me whether I can run Windows and Linux on it for sure. Intel app support in OSX is currently quite limited and I'd like the option to be able to boot a different OS until the app support has caught up. Anyone know?

Andy Mell, 2006-01-10

Re Dual boot...

These are dual core 64 bit processors right? Dual booting to WinXP 64 bit with its limited driver support and slow 32it app support seems more of a backward step that just sticking to the new IntelMacOS.

Or maybe I'm just missing something...

Colin Williams, 2006-01-10

Colin, the machine will run better with Mac OS X. But as Andy said, there are people out there who need Windows (or Linux). Notes Developers come to mind.

Volker Weber, 2006-01-10

I guess the point I was trying to make is that a dual boot scenario on these new Macs is unlikely to be the magic pill that some people expect it to be...

A mate of mine got suckered into buying a bunch of PCs with XP-64 preinstalled...they then had to spend 6+ weeks just getting the most basic things working...3 months later they still can't print and they don't understand why their apps perform so badly compared with the previous lot of hardware.

Or maybe its possible to run XP-32 on a 64bit CPU...?

Colin Williams, 2006-01-10

Just ordered the new Power Book ;-)

But I hate the new name. It is awkward to speak.

But the screen resolution is pathetic for 15,4" ...

But I hate to wait until the end of next month.

But I just took 1 GB, as 300 EUR for another gig is just too much.

But I also hate the huge price gap between the EUR and USD price.

Mariano Kamp, 2006-01-10

the Yonah processor is not a 64bit-CPU, but a 32bit.
It does not even include the 64bit extensions. They will come with the Merom line of processors later this year.

Achim Lange, 2006-01-10

I don't care that much about the Intel Macs, I had hoped for an iPod hardware update today. (But we knew that was unlikely, given that the Video iPod is only a few months old.)

I really _do_ want to get a Video iPod 2.0, if it comes with a larger display.

Is there any rule on iPod release dates? I couldn't really see a pattern from

Hanno Müller, 2006-01-10

@Colin: Yes, the 32bit Windows XP can be run on a 64bit System. My colleague e.g. is running Windows XP 32bit on a HP xw4300 with a 64bit CPU.

Abdelkader Boui, 2006-01-10

My suspicions have been raised by the *complete* lack of any numbers assigned to battery life on the MacBook Pros....

I scoured the info pages and could only find a reference to a "Don't forget your batteries are real components that wear out and won't last forever" info page.

The only conclusion I can draw is that the battery life is pants iff:

The backlight is on
The removable media drive is active
Bluetooth is on
Airport is on
The backlit keyboard is active
A key is pressed

in an "any 2 from 6" combo.

C'mon, if it was on a par with the existing G4 machines, they'd be waving their willies like there was no tomorrow, wouldn't they?

I love Apple stuff, the whole Apple thing, but when I feel gotcha'd like this, it leaves a bad taste...up until the 'Wot, no battery life numbers point?' it was all I could do to stop myself from selling my 3 month old G4 Pb on Ebay and buying a MacBook Pro immediately!

John Ash, 2006-01-10

...and here was me assuming that the new MacIntel machines were 64bit! Opps!

Colin Williams, 2006-01-10

John, most likely you are wrong on the battery life. The Yonah processors are looking good.

Volker Weber, 2006-01-10

John, good to see you're not the only one concerned about battery life.
My assumption was that even Apple doesn't yet know...

Sebastian Krauß, 2006-01-10

Volker, dual booting is for Notes developers, but I think not for much time, because of "Hannover".

Egor Margineanu, 2006-01-10

Egor, IBM has not announced that you can develop Notes applications in "Hannover". You will be able to run them, but in order to let you develop them, Lotus would need to port Designer to the Workplace client. IIRC this effort is not underway.

Volker Weber, 2006-01-11


"The rest of the system is hardly 2 to 4 times faster ..." - this is most likely true without having ever inspected the hardware. This is the point where I am hoping that others (other than APPLE) will start building hardware optimised for the Mac OS.


Running Windows XP 32 on a 64 is the way to go currently. Microsoft is having a bit much to do lately and are not getting around to fixing their "Windows 64 Bit hury up" system.

Steffen Gutermann, 2006-01-11

Update on my previous post, I have now heard third hand that the Intel Macs have an EFI boot prom instead of a BIOS, which means it is likely not going to be immediately straightforward to run Windows. As far as I know only the Windows for Itanium supports EFI boot. Fingers crossed that someone can sort this out quickly.

Andy Mell, 2006-01-11

Regarding CPU power consumption vs. battery life...
The power consumption of a dual Yonah core seems marginal compared to the Mobile Radeon X1600, 15" color display and DVD ROM.
Doesn't the 85W power supply ring a bell, or two? =)
I've got quite a fishy feeling about this, too.

Karsten W. Rohrbach, 2006-01-11


If I'm wrong - and that would be good (but don't tell my wife I said that), why hasn't this been trumpeted so far?

I went and had a look at the data sheet for the PPC used in the current line up of G4 Powerbooks and the maximum power consumption is 18W typical and 25W maximum.

Getting info from Intel on the Duo Core proved more problematic (Adobe Acrobat barfed on the downloaded data sheet with an encryption error of some sort :) ), but this from Wikipedia....

Yonah will feature four (4) levels of power consumption.

>= 50 W Core Duo E -- For Large Multimedia and Gaming Notebooks
24 - 50 W Core Duo T -- For Mainstream Consumer Notebooks
15 - 23 W Core Duo L -- For Ultra-Portable Notebooks and Some Smaller Thin and Light Clients
< 5.5 W Core Solo U -- For ultra-thin ULV Notebooks, PDA, and other Multimedia Devices

Now, that's not terribly conclusive I know, but I would have thought we were looking at the T variant for the MacBook, which puts the power consumption at 100%-200% of that for the PPC. OK, that's great for the claimed 4-5X performance improvement, but it won't help the battery life much, will it?

John Ash, 2006-01-11

No comments about iLife 6? I thought the additions announced to it are very interesting - I will have the chance to teach cinematography to a group of Boy Scouts in the near future, and plan to introduce them to iMovie, etc as part of that process. Sounds like Apple has made additions that will allow for easier podcasting, videocasting for people who want to try it.

Hardware - it'll take some months before we know fully what all this means. I would expect that even if you can't directly dual boot into Windows that there will be a VMWare version for Apple in the not too distant future. Has anyone heard about that?

My G4 Powerbook needs to last another year, anyway. By that time, they'll have worked out the problems.
with regards to it not based on eclipse? In that case, it'd be plain silly if they didn't allow development on this platform.

Jon Johnston, 2006-01-11

Does anybody know if the MacBook has right and left clicking on the trackpad?

Bruce Elgort, 2006-01-11

@Andy : Linux does seem to be able to also run on EFI, so couldn't you install Linux with CrossOver/Wine to run Notes developer ?

Alex Boschmans, 2006-01-11


Regarding VMware, I have never heard them announcing any plans for a Mac OS X port of their product. It may be easier to do so now that Apple is using Intel chips, but they still would have to write the application. These things don't just "happen".

Regarding Notes Designer, again, this is not marketecture. Hannover will be based on the Workplace Client, which in turn is based on Eclipse RCP, which in turn is closely tied to Eclipse workbench. So far, however, there isn't even a native Eclipse version for Mac OS/Intel. There isn't even a Workplace client for Mac OS/PowerPC. Yes, there are plans, but again, these things don't just "happen". Even if there were a Workplace Client on Mac OS X, and even if it were a universal binary, this would not mean, that there is a Domino Designer. Domino Designer does not seem to be ported to Eclipse/Workplace/whatever at all. Again, these things don't just "happen".

Volker Weber, 2006-01-11

Regarding VMware/Xen - I'd expect to see this sooner rather than later.
Yonah supports the VT processor virtualisation, so it should run rather nicely. More stuff at

Andy Mell, 2006-01-11

You're tagline is a bit funny -- Apple trumpeting the new G5 on their webpage.
In fact, I wondered the same thing yesterday after the keynote had ended. But it
turns out they finally updated their webpage at around 11am PDT (about 1 hour
after the event).

I'll probably be upgrading my powerbook at some point. But I'm wary to be one
of the first owners. Hopefully this time there won't be white splotches, bad pixels,
strange DRAM problems, etc.

Oh -- whether you could get one of these machines to dual boot. I think Apple will
be pushing people to use virtual PC. In fact Jobs himself has mentioned before how
virtual PC is "really fast" on Intel macs at the 2005 keynote. I'm not too familiar with
the current Mac bootloader -- but it does support loading different OS's. So I would
be a little bit surprised if the new version didn't let you do that. I suppose it's possible
that in the interest of having a "secure system" they don't let you boot anything but
OS/X. I'm sure people will be looking into this soon.

Eric Anderson, 2006-01-11

Re the dual boot question, and whether Apple will allow it, this article clears that question up.

Colin Williams, 2006-01-11

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