I’ve been using the new 2.66 GHz Quad Core Mac Pro (That’s two Intel Xeon server spec’ed processors each with two processors sharing one die) for a week now: Wow!
My impression may have a lot to do with two factors: The other ‘new’ computers I’ve come in contact with recently were G4 based PowerBooks. The G4 was a processor that was long outdated before Apple switched to Intel based processors and mobile machines, though convenient, are never as powerful as desktops and servers. The other factor might have been my previous work desktop machine was a dual G4 450GHz that was manufactured around 2000/2001.
I’ve been struggling to try to use this new beast to its full potential, but it’s not easy. The hardest I’ve worked it so far was only 87% of its CPU(s) power – and that was transcoding two videos at once. (Oh and don’t expect any interesting video from me shortly, I was transcoding video only for the sake of trying to use 100% of my CPUs). I imagine I can’t actually use all of the CPU power in this machine unless I get more RAM and a faster hard drive, but I barley need this amount of power as it is.
My experience has been that four incredibly powerful cores means that Mail.app and iTunes still take about 4 seconds to launch, but they always take 4 seconds, even if you are transcoding video at at the same time.
The last thing I have to say about the Power Mac is that it is just a brilliant piece of industrial design. The expandability and layout of the internal structure is genius, and again, the power! I’m sure that if I work for Brock for 5 more years this machine would be an ideal platform throughout.Â Information week just named it the best Windows desktop out there.