Mac Pro vs. PowerMac G5

As the world around waited for the unveiling of a brand new chassis that would tempt PC users everywhere, Apple introduced the Mac Pro in none other than the same chassis we've seen for years with the PowerMac G5.  The internals are totally revamped, but the outside looks pretty much unchanged. 

There are now two optical drive bays in the system as you can see by this comparison shot:


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You get twice as many peripheral ports on the front with two USB 2.0, one 400Mbps and one 800Mbps FireWire port:

PowerMac G5 Front Panel
Mac Pro Front Panel

 

The rear port configuration also gets an overhaul with an extra USB 2.0 port and two Gigabit Ethernet jacks (the PCIe based PowerMac G5s already had the dual GigE jacks):

PowerMac G5 Rear Panel
Mac Pro Rear Panel

 

The previous PowerMac G5 design was in dire need of additional USB 2.0 ports, and the Mac Pro addresses that need.  Of course the Apple keyboard that ships with the system gives you another two USB 2.0 ports, but they are unpowered making them useless for pretty much everything but a mouse.  Apple's Cinema Displays also feature built in hubs (USB 2.0 and FireWire) to help give you more places to plug in. 


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Index Inside the Mac Pro
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  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    Could you show me how to get Dell to take $149 off for the monitor? Whenever I try to configure it if I select the "No Monitor" option it lists a cost of $0, meaning I don't gain or lose anything.

    The Dell protection plan is truly enterprise class however the point of the comparison was to look at things from a purely hardware/cost of components perspective, which is how these Mac vs. PC price comparisons are usually done. Once you go above and beyond that then you get into this slippery slope argument of how much you should tack on for the price of being able to run OS X, etc...

    Take care,
    Anand
    Reply
  • delta53 - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    The "they" was referring to Apple namely at the WWDC6, no offence Anand. The option is given under the Medium and Large business section, but your point is well taken that exact price is impossible in that section.

    Keep up the good reports,

    Kyle
    Reply
  • Furen - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    I was under the impression that Cinebench had very light memory usage. It looks to me that what will make or break Woodcrest's "power efficiency" is going to be FBDIMM power so perhaps loading up the ram will paint slightly different numbers... Reply
  • TamarinMonkey - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    Now that we can run both OSX and XP on the same hardware, I'd be interested to see some of the benchmarks run on both OSs and see how they do. Any plans to do this in a future article?

    ~Tam~
    Reply
  • retrospooty - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    I am pretty sure this has been done, and OSX has been found to be lacking, especially in 3d games. The speed advantage of PC over MAC was not that Intel/AMD were so much faster than IBM G4, then G5, but the OS and drivers are much finer tuned. Reply
  • Tegeril - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    It was definitely not so much about the OS/Drivers being finer tuned in regards to 3D gaming. It was definitely a DirectX versus OpenGL issue. Reply
  • psychobriggsy - Thursday, August 17, 2006 - link

    More specifically, Apple's OpenGL implementation on PowerPC was/is severely lacking.

    I wonder if the Intel Mac OS X drivers are better - i.e., the ATI/Nvidia drivers ported to Mac OS X.
    Reply
  • Konq - Monday, September 11, 2006 - link

    I just played WoW last night on my Quadro 4500-equiped Mac Pro. An ATI version should be similar. I was in a 40 man raid for my guild. This thing screams in OS X. I get 30-40 fps in a crowded IF, 50-100 fps flying, and I peaked at 135 fps looking at the sky. All at 1920x1200. The drivers sure have improved and I think are better on intel. I have a 2.3 Ghz dual core G5 and this is twice as fast even thought the G5 had a 7800 GT card. Oh - and I never noticed the fans spin up during the raid even though I had low sound volume.

    Rumor has it that OpenGL will be much improved when it goes multithreaded in 10.4.8. We will see. :)
    Reply
  • Konq - Monday, September 11, 2006 - link

    I forgot to mention: the Mac Pro loaded the WoW AQ40 instance in about 2 seconds! Faster even the second time. I can't express how impressed I am with this machine.

    As a side note, I used Office in Rosetta, and it is as fast as my G5. Maybe 4GB of RAM helps here but I was worried after reading Anands' report.
    Reply
  • Pirks - Wednesday, August 16, 2006 - link

    Please use XP x64 benchmarks as well, since it's uberinteresting to see how both 64-bit OSes from MS and Apple compete. XP 32-bit is okay, but a bit boring. Reply

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