To the Mac community...

Posted by: Michael

To the Mac community... - 10/06/04 03:04 PM

[/i]...much of which is not technically-savvy in hardwaredom?[/i]<br><br>What an idiot. link<br><br><br><br>[i]Apple testing guru banned from... testing <br><br>Frugal policies of our time<br><br><br>By Wil Harris: Wednesday 06 October 2004, 10:31<br><br>TO ANYONE working in the technology press, the reluctance of Apple to send out review machines to magazines or websites is notorious. Almost every major Mac print publication gets the first look at new machines through partners and contacts in retail, rather than through Jobs himself. Call it picking your own fruit.<br><br>For a small website then, the chances of getting a review Mac machine are pretty slim, which led BareFeats owner Rob Morgan to come up with an interesting way of testing: in store.<br><br>Morgan has been running his site since 1995, and he has been a saviour of a Mac community begging for real-world testing. A hardware geek, he runs the performance figures that people want to see on the different flavours of Apple, so they can make their Mac-buying decisions.<br><br>Last week, however, he published numbers on the iMac G5, which Apple claims can be up to 3 times juicier than the iMac G4 in games such as Unreal Tournament and Halo. When Morgan tested these claims on an Apple retail store machine (he says that local staff were well aware of his practices, and he was even invited to give an in-store lecture on tweaking Macs) he found that there was only a difference of 11-12% between the machines.<br><br>Now, anybody looking from a PC-enthusiast perspective at Morgan's results will see the absolute sanity of his conclusions. The newest iMac G4 uses an FX5200. The schpankity new iMac G5 uses an FX5200. The difference in gaming performance, then, is purely going to be processor and platform based - but the bottleneck is always going to be that low-end Nvidia card. To think otherwise might indicate a little too much cider imbibing.<br><br>To the Mac community, much of which is not technically-savvy in hardwaredom, these conclusions are not obvious - especially not in the face of such outrageous performance claims from Apple. Apple had a tizzy and banned Morgan from doing any more benchmarking in store, saying that he could get a machine from Apple direct for testing but, only having a small site, he'd be back of the queue - handily negating any independent testing of Apple hardware online and making future hardware dependent on future 'co-operation', no doubt.<br><br>After Wired magazine got in contact with Apple and put some heat on - baked Apples? - Morgan was sent an iMac G5 for testing. Sure enough, his results held up with final retail models. Morgan claims to now be working with Apple to discover why the company's benchmarks are so radically different from his own. We'd suggest it's because Apple's benchmarking has been known for a long time to be, at best, generous and, at worst, outrageously inaccurate.<br><br>It's not the first time the great white has been caught out - earlier in the year they had adverts banned from British TV after claiming the iMac G5 was the fastest personal computer in the world, a claim that was obviously ridiculous to anyone that had seen an Athlon 64 system.<br><br>There are a couple of lessons that we would suggest Apple learns here. The first, Mr Jobs, is to stop being so darned frugal with systems, and let reviewers review your products. Publications are the route to market for your products, don't make life difficult for them. The second is to stop under-speccing your products - an FX5200 in a product costing over 1,000 is inexcusable and reeks of corner-cutting. Lastly, stop trying to educate and spin at the same time. You may want your buyers to know all about Mac gaming, but you can't then stamp on real-world gaming testing that shows your products for what they really are. The answer is to create a machine that's better for gaming. <br><br>The Inq has been accused of Mac-bashing plenty of times, so let us be clear that this is not one of those occasions. This writer is a hardened Apple user, and wrote this story on his extremely-sexy-thank-you-very-much Aluminium Powerbook G4. However, as both a hardware addict and Apple user, I find these dubious performance claims by Apple unhelpful, and the obstruction of real-world data positively annoying. How d'ya like dem Apples?<br><br>