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BARE FEATS - real world Mac speed tests

 MOST RECENT SPEED TESTS

SPEED TESTS by Category

New eMac 1.25GHz versus iMac 1.25GHz
versus PowerBook 1.25GHz
versus Power Mac 1.25GHz

Originally posted April 21st, 2004 by rob-ART morgan, mad scientist
Updated May 5th, 2004 with iBook 1.2GHz results.

The new G4/1.25GHz eMac seems too good to be true. Only $999 including 8X SuperDrive. Is it really a better buy than the iMac 17" or PowerBook 15" or iBook 14" or Power Mac G4 (17") running at the same clock speed? Is it as fast?

CPU INTENSIVE TESTS

3D GAMING

INSIGHTS:
1. When it come to CPU "crunch," the eMac can definitely "run with the pack."

2. However, 3D gaming is a different story. The eMac (and the iBook) were left behind on 3 out of 4 Three-D Game tests. It probably has a something to do with only having 32MB of video memory.

3. Is the eMac the best value of the five? Going down the feature check list, it would seem it's a "steal" at $999. But then there's the "X" factors. For example, I found the eMac's CRT to be slightly out of focus compared to the LCD screens used by the others. Is the thinner, clearer, moveable, wider LCD screen on the iMac worth the extra $800? What about the iBook as an alternative to the hefty eMac?

CPU Clock Speed
1.25GHz
1.25GHz
1.2GHz
1.25MHz
1.25GHz
Memory Speed
333MHz
333MHz
266MHz
333MHz
333Mhz
Standard Memory
256MB
256MB
256MB
256MB
256MB
Maximum Memory
1GB(a)
1GB(a)
1.25GB
2GB
2GB
System Bus Speed
167MHz
167MHz
133MHz
167MHz
167MHz
L2 Cache Size
512K
256K
512K
512K
256K
L3 Cache Size
0
0
0
0
1MB
Standard Drive Size
80GB
80GB
60GB
60GB
80GB
Max Drive Option from Aple
160GB
160GB
60GB
80GB
160GB (*4)
Graphic Processor
Radeon 9200
GeForceFX 5200
Radeon 9200
Radeon 9600
Radeon 9000
Video Memory
32MB
64MB
32MB
64MB
64MB
Optional Graphics
none
none
none
none
GeForce4 Ti
SuperDrive
Included
Included
Optional
Optional
Optional
DVD-R Write Speed
8X
4X
4X
4X
4x
Viewable Screen
16"
17"
14"
15.2"
17"
Max Resolution
1280x960
1440x900
1024x768
1280x854
1280x1024
External Video
VGA, S-Video
VGA, S-Video
VGA, S-Video
DVI, S-Video
ADC, DVI
Dual Display?
Mirror Only(b)
Mirror Only(b)
Mirror Only (b)
Dual or Mirror
Dual or Mirror
Weight
50lbs (22.7kg)
21lbs (9.7kg)
5.9lbs (2.7kg)
5.7lbs (2.6kg)
42lbs (19.1kg)
Backlit Keyboard
no
no
no
yes
no
Max Ethernet Speed
100Mbit
100Mbit
100MBit
1000Mbit
1000Mbit
FireWire Ports
2-400
2-400
1-400
1-400, 1-800
2-400
USB Ports
3-USB2, 2-USB1
3-USB2, 2-USB1
2-USB2
2-USB2
4-USB1
AirPort Extreme Card
Optional
Optional
Included
Included
Non Extreme Option
BlueTooth Module
Optional
Optional
Optional
Included
Not Avail
Footprint (sq in)
270.18
33.284
129.54
157.08
121.44 (17" LCD)
Other Features
CardBus Slot
4 PCI slots
Price "Nicely Equipped" (512MB, 80GB, SuperDrive, AirPort Extreme, BlueTooth)
$1,223
$2,023
$1849
$2424(c)
$2352(d)

(a) There's a report that TransIntl.com has figured out how to get the eMac and iMac up to 2GB.
(b) Some websites posted firmware patches that enable eMacs, iMacs and iBooks to support dual displays. We can't comment on the reliability of those patches.
(c) Since the PowerBook 1.25 is no longer made, I did the price of the new 15" 1.33GHz model.
(d) The Power Mac price includes a 17" LCD display)

Moving Targets
I expect the iMac is due for a "freshening" in the near future, so the eMac's value advantage may narrow again. With all these juicy "low end" choices, it's a great time to be a Mac fanatic.

 

SOURCES FOR TEST PRODUCTS
The test units were demo units at the local Apple Retail Store. I recommend you go see and touch and feel the eMac, iMac, PowerBook, and Power Mac at your friendly Apple dealer BEFORE you decide which one is the best buy for you.

As for ordering online, besides the Apple Online Store, check out Small Dog Electronics in Vermont. Being in California, Small Dog is cheaper compared to ordering direct from Apple since they don't me charge sales tax. Apple charges everyone in the USA sales tax. Even if I have to pay shipping, I still save. And Small Dog will do "build to order" just like Apple. The have refurbs and open box specials just like Apple.

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 TransIntl SPECIALS
1GB Kit for G5 $199
1GB Stick for New AlBooks $349
120GB Hitachi Drive $115

 

 

 


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2004 Rob Art Morgan
"BARE facts on Macintosh speed FEATS"
email if you have questions.