[rescue] Apple to ditch IBM, switch to Intel chips

Patrick Giagnocavo patrick at mail.zill.net
Wed Jun 15 00:04:14 CDT 2005

On Wed, Jun 15, 2005 at 07:48:20AM +0300, Geoffrey S. Mendelson wrote:
> On Tue, Jun 14, 2005 at 08:14:52PM -0400, velociraptor wrote:
> > I just recalled another irony in all this...
> > 
> > M$ is switching to POWER for the XBOX 2.
> Which may be the reason Apple droppped it. If Microsoft buys two of them
> for each XBOX 2, and they sell 10 million the first year, how many chips
> are left over for Apple?

But wouldn't it be logical that the price would drop as volume
increased?  Surely they would be able to afford to bring up another
fab, or run the fabs they have at 110% for a while, if it meant
selling 3 million or more chips to Apple?

> Jobs is persona non grata at Motorola and if IBM was given a choice of
> suppling Microsoft or Apple who would they choose?

They would choose ... BOTH !  

My understanding is that the IBM PPC CPU that XBOX is going to use has
some severe limitations that make it difficult to use as a general
purpose CPU:

-- no out of order execution (3.2Ghz CPU would thus be outperformed by
1GHz G4)

-- difficult memory mgmt, especially on the SPE's

-- 	G5 PPC:  8 instructions per clock cycle
	Cell PPC core: 2 instructions per clock cycle
  -- roughly this means 1Ghz G5 = 4Ghz Cell PPC core (not exactly of course)

transistor counts:

G5 - 58 million transistors
Cell - 200 million+ with PPC core and 6 or 8 SPEs
-- hard to believe that Cell would be cheaper given larger die size


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