Benchmarks demolish Apple speed boasts

This is a few days old but still news worthy.

As of this morning, thirty one entries have been submitted to the SPEC performance list for the year so far. But if you're wondering why Apple hasn't yet dispatched its latest "workstation class" G4 hardware for examination by the council, in what is the industry's most respected set of benchmark tests, C't has the answer.

The German tech bible has put the latest dual G4s through the SPEC CPU2000 processor benchmark, and the results make dismal reading for hardcore Apple loyalists. C't found that the RISC-based machines running OS X fall severely short of expectations, being bested in the floating point tests by an eighteen month old Pentium III-based machine

You might still be able to buy one of these, on eBay.

In the integer tests, which give a better indication of performance for the kind of general-purpose desktop computing most of use every day, the G4 held its own against the ancient Pentium running at 1Ghz.

But when C't ran the floating point benchmarks it found that performance was particularly wanting. The elegant PowerPC was designed with floating point as a key consideration, and with these kind of tests, it should be on home turf.

As C't wryly notes, "In theory the PowerPC FPU with its 32 registers ought to have been superior to the x86 FPU with its antiquated stack structure and eight registers only."

The G4 scored between 147 and 187 on the floating point tests, while the Pentium III scored 297. Today's Pentium 4's double that figure, and as a result, today's PCs are four times as fast as Apple's professional line in some situations.

News source: The USA Register

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