Apple introduces Power Mac G5 Quad and Power Mac G5 Dual

Apple today unveiled its new Power Mac G5 desktop line featuring the Power Mac G5 Quad, providing quad-core processing with two 2.5 GHz dual-core PowerPC G5 processors. All Power Mac G5 models now feature dual-core processors, a new PCI Express architecture and higher performance graphics options including NVIDIA’s Quadro FX 4500, bringing the industry standard for workstation graphics to the Mac.

“The Power Mac G5 Quad delivers the workstation performance our creative and scientific customers demand,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing in the press release. “With quad-core processing, a new PCI Express architecture, and the fastest workstation card from NVIDIA, the new Power Mac G5 Quad is the most powerful system we’ve ever made.”

With two 2.5 GHz dual-core processors, each with 1MB of L2 cache, the Power Mac G5 Quad delivers breakthrough performance on applications used extensively by creative professionals and scientists. For example:

• Final Cut Pro 5 encodes SD video content up to 60 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5
• Adobe Photoshop runs a series of 45 commonly used filters and actions 43 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5
• Adobe After Effects renders video effects up to 69 percent faster on the new Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5
• LightWave 3D renders animation up to 59 percent faster on the Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5
• The scientific benchmark Bioinformatics Benchmark System (BBS version 3) completes a comparison of genomic sequences up to 39 percent faster on the Power Mac G5 Quad when compared with the Dual Processor 2.7 GHz Power Mac G5

The Power Mac G5 line offers leading-edge expansion with industry standard PCI Express architecture, providing four expansion slots to support high-performance video and audio devices and multiple standard graphics cards to drive an array of up to eight displays. The Power Mac G5 delivers up to 16GB of 533 MHz DDR2 SDRAM and now features two Gigabit Ethernet ports — ideal for customers working in an Xsan environment. Providing industry-leading connectivity and high-performance I/O, every Power Mac G5 also includes one FireWire 800 port, two FireWire 400 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, two USB 1.1 ports, optical and digital audio input and output, and built-in support for AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth 2.0+EDR. The new Power Mac G5 line also includes Apple’s next generation mouse, Mighty Mouse, featuring up to four programmable buttons and an ingenious Scroll Ball that lets users scroll in any direction — vertically, horizontally and even diagonally.

The new Power Mac G5 comes standard with either the NVIDIA GeForce 6600 LE with 128MB of video memory or the NVIDIA GeForce 6660 with 256MB of video memory, both provide support for dual-displays and Apple’s breakthrough 30-inch Cinema HD Display, now priced at $2,499. The NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT with 256MB of video memory and the NVIDIA Quadro FX 4500 with 512MB of video memory are both available as build-to-order options. The Quadro FX 4500 is ideal for demanding animation, special effects and scientific visualization applications such as Alias’ Maya and DeLano Research’s PyMol. The Quadro FX 4500 can drive up to two 30-inch Apple Cinema HD Displays and includes a stereo 3D port to connect goggles for stereo-in-a-window applications.

The 2.0 GHz and 2.3 GHz Power Mac G5 Dual are available now and the 2.5 GHz Power Mac G5 Quad will be available in early November through the Apple Store, Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers.

Included software: Mac OS X, Spotlight, Dashboard, Mail, iChat AV, Safari, Address Book, QuickTime, iLife (includes iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie HD, iDVD, and GarageBand), iCal, DVD Player, Classic environment, Art Directors Toolkit X, FileMaker Pro Trial, GraphicConverter, Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac Test Drive, OmniGraffle, OmniOutliner, QuickBooks New User Edition, Zinio Reader, Xcode Development Tools.

The Power Mac G5 Dual, with a suggested retail price of $1,999 (US), includes:
• dual-core 2.0GHz PowerPC G5 processor
• 512MB of 533 MHz DDR2 SDRAM expandable up to 16GB
• 160GB Serial ATA hard drive running at 7200 rpm
• NVIDIA GeForce 6600 LE with 128MB of GDDR SDRAM
• three open PCI Express expansion slots: two 4-lane slots and one 8-lane slot
• dual Gigabit Ethernet ports
• 16x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
• ships with Mighty Mouse and Apple Keyboard

The Power Mac G5 Dual, with a suggested retail price of $2,499 (US), includes:
• dual-core 2.3 GHz PowerPC G5 processor
• 512MB of 533 MHz DDR2 SDRAM expandable up to 16GB
• 250GB Serial ATA hard drive running at 7200 rpm
• NVIDIA GeForce 6600 with 256MB of GDDR SDRAM
• three open PCI Express expansion slots: two 4-lane slots and one 8-lane slot
• dual Gigabit Ethernet ports
• 16x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
• ships with Mighty Mouse and Apple Keyboard

The Power Mac G5 Quad, with a suggested retail price of $3,299 (US), includes:
• two dual-core 2.5GHz PowerPC G5 processors
• 512MB of 533 MHz DDR2 SDRAM expandable up to 16GB
• 250GB Serial ATA hard drive running at 7200 rpm
• NVIDIA GeForce 6600 with 256MB of GDDR SDRAM
• three open PCI Express expansion slots: two 4-lane slots and one 8-lane slot
• dual Gigabit Ethernet ports
• 16x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
• ships with Mighty Mouse and Apple Keyboard

Build-to-order options include up to 16GB of NECC or ECC DDR2 SDRAM, up to two 500 GB Serial ATA hard drives running at 7200 rpm, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT with 256MB of GDDR3 SDRAM, NVIDIA Quadro FX 4500 graphics card with 512MB of GDDR3 SDRAM, AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth module, Apple Wireless Keyboard and Apple Wireless Mouse, Xserve RAID and Apple Fibre Channel PCI Express Card.

See the new Apple Power Mac G5 models here.

Advertisement: Order the new Power Mac G5 from the Apple Store now. Dual-core PowerPC processors, a modern PCI Express architecture, and wicked-fast workstation graphics. From $1999. Free shipping.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
First benchmark tests of Apple’s new Power Mac G5 dual-core machines – October 19, 2005

57 Comments

  1. Queezie,

    All of today’s announcements were aimed at “Pro” users. And yes, there is a much smaller market for “Pro” users who need this bleeding edge performance. But those who like myself make a living by using this stuff are willing to pay for it.

    It is nice to see that Apple still has us “Pro users” in mind… Afterall, we are the ones who kept the company alive before the iPod and iMac..

  2. why can’t apple throw a dual core into the imac (for a price). That would knock me off my 3.5 to 4 year replacement schedule. Are they too hot? I thought they were comparable. Don’t they have more sophisticated power management? Are they too scarce?

  3. Buffy – I don’t think anyone who does their homework will be wishing for a dual-core Xeon anytime soon. I just read a benchmark report on this beast, and about all they do is double the heat. (OK, a slight exaggeration, but it was a very disappointing benchmark.) (Love that OSX built-in spell checker, or I woulda really clobbered that word exaggeration.)

    I’ll be reporting my experiences with that new quad G5 when it arrives. Been waiting for it for over a year now.

    MW – needed, as in, “What’s needed now is a stock jump of 5 bucks to get a free Quad.”

  4. b,

    Because the iMac is a consumer level machine, and most consumers do not need or would use dual core performance. If they do, well then they should buy a Powermac. This is what keeps the consumer and pro machines distinguishable.

    And yes, ther are too hot. The Quad Powermac uses a liquid-cooled radiator…. Would never work in an iMac.

  5. Trevor,

    You’re right – iMac is consumer level, which is why they won’t for the shortterm include a dual core CPU. What I can’t work out is why the $1700 consumer model includes such options as wireless airport and bluetooth, and why on a $3300 computer you *STILL* have to pay another $99 for them.

    If this isn’t gouging pro’s what else is?? Of course, perhaps Apple figures that many pro’s don’t want/need that stuff, but to charge those who do yet another $100 is pretty shitty.

    It appears that recently, Apple’s consumer products have been very good value. The top end are like luxury cars, where even a fairly basic option jacks up the price significantly (relatively speaking)

  6. Trevor,
    In a couple years, all new personal computers will be dual core. I’m not a “professional” user but I would love the benefit of a dual core in an imac. In fact, I’d probably rather have a dual core 1.6 ghz then a 2.1ghz single core. I think consumers need the dualness more than the ghz.
    If your talking about Apple’s need to differentiate their consumer and pro models, that’s just marketing. Also, Apple may feel that 2.1ghz “sounds” better than 1.6ghz dual core, that’s marketing too.

  7. Never… buy RAM memory from Apple. Not that their RAM has any issuses, rather that Apple charges 2 to 3 times and more of the going rate for RAM. Buy your memory somewhere else and you’ll have the same quality and guarantee but, you’ll have a wad of cash left over.

  8. Wow. I think I need to become a professional prognosticator. Pinned the PowerMacs right on. I’ll be curious to see if I got the PowerBooks right. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”LOL” style=”border:0;” />

    Okay, done with horn tooting. Time for some fun conspiracy theories.

    Wander over to Apple’s site and check out the benchmarks. A few entertaining things to note:

    1. Apple is no longer benchmarking against Intel. The main PowerMac page pits the Quad against the Dual 2.7GHz.
    2. Apple has a special “Upgrade” section pitting the various PowerMac models against a dual 1.42GHz PowerMac G4.

    I gotta admit, I’m vaguely intrigued by this.

    For point #1, is Apple not benchmarking against Intel because Intel and Apple are friends now? Or do the Quad Macs get smoked and no amount of creative benchmarking can obscure this fact?

    For point #2, is Apple trying to drag any laggards that are sitting on PowerMac G4s and waiting for Intels into the camp? Maybe get the “even” upgraders? (I, myself, am an “odd” upgrader–G3 to G5 to, probably, G7)

    To wander off on a different tack, Apple still smokes Dell on price. I’d love to see a performance comparison, but the PowerMac G5 Quad is $3399 with 1GB of RAM. The Dell Precision 470 with two dual-core 2.8GHz CPUs, 1GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, a 48X/32XCDRW AND 16XDVD+/-RW w/Sonic DM and DVDit! SE, CyberLink PowerDVD, a 256MB PCIe x16 nVidia Quadro FX 3450, Keyboard, Optical Mouse, and no floppy drive comes to $5454 at Dell’s Small/Medium Business Store. That’s a difference of $2055! Heck, you could buy another dual 2GHz for that kind of savings!

    (Entertaining aside: I tried to configure the Dell with 512MB of RAM, like the Mac. It told me the memory was “incompatible.” When I upped it to 1GB, no problem. According to Dell, they’re both DDR2 400Mhz ECC. Why do people trust these guys?!)

  9. I was waiting on these and I have to say I’m not as enthusiastic as I thought I would be.

    $300 more than the previous top of the line. – Love to see 3rd party speed comparisons with the older line. Bet the loss of MHz and the inability of most applications to really take advantage of an extra cpu/core will make this upgrade not much of one.

    $800 more for an extra chip + 200MHz… steep by any comparison, also this is a single cpu going for the price of a duelie. Seems Apple found a way to increase the profit margin on the PowerMac.

    Also, the line seems like a slick way to guarantee another simple ‘step up” upgrade in another six months prior to the Intel switch, when they all become “Quads”.

    Is still may buy one of course. It’s a sickness.

  10. All exciting stuff, but just one thing… I’m not sure about the name of the photo app… I mean… aperture? Seriously? I know it’s a little adolescent, but couldn’t they have thought of a less giggle-worthy name? I can see the joke posts and headlines now.. “I have a big problem with my aperture”, “please help me instal plugin in my aperture” , “Apple’s aperture feels good to computer geeks” etc etc.

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