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Accelerate Your Mac! News Archive for: 1/9/2001 Tuesday's NewsReturn to Accelerate Your Mac!

Click for Wireless Networking Adapters and Bases!
Click for Wireless Adapters and Bases!

Top stories of Jan. 9th, 2001:

Articles on iDVD and PowerBook G4
Steve of sponsor Other World Computing sent articles on both Apple and Digital Video (iDVD) and the new PowerBook G4.
[Update - see the Powerbook section of the systems page for later PB G4 articles, performance tests, drive upgrade guides and more as well as articles/tests related to the 2001 Digital Audio G4/733 and /533s.]

I've updated the Nvidia Mac GeForce Q&A article (noted earlier today) to include a photo of the OEM Geforce2 MX card. (Several readers asked if the card supported dual monitors. The current version Apple will ship does not - but I already suggested that a dual-head GeForce2 MX version would be a great option, even for G4 Cubes.)

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OS 9.1 Update Now Available:
The server is choking from the load I suspect (I can't connect currently) but it's available at (Thanks to Todd Bangerter for the heads up!)
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Pix, Features, Questions & Answers on Nvidia's Mac GeForce2 MX Graphics Cards
Brian Burke of Nvidia sent a press release and FAQ (Questions/Answers) regarding the features of their GeForce2 MX Graphics cards now a part of the new PowerMac G4 line. I've included a photo of the OEM GeForce2 card also. Click Here for Details.
[Update: see the Video articles page, graphics card section for other articles/tests of the Geforce2MX and GeForce3 (vs Radeon, etc.).]
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Details on New G4 PowerBooks:

(Apple now has a PowerBook G4 product page posted with more details.)
  • PowerBook G4 Titanium:
  • G4 400Mhz and 500MHz
  • 15.2" "Mega-Wide" Screen
  • DVD Slot Loading Drive builtin
  • 5 hour battery life (claimed)
  • 1" Thick, 5.3 Lbs.
  • Titanium Case
  • Dual Airport antennas
  • 128MB/256MB RAM
  • 10/20GB Hard Drive
  • Rage128 Graphics Chip w/8MB
  • Pricing: $2599 (G4/400) and $3499 (G4/500)

In production, delivery started in late January 2001 (estimated). [Update - see the Powerbook section of the systems page for later PB G4 articles, performance tests, drive upgrade guides and more.]

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Apple's iDVD Encoder/Burner Software:
Jobs demonstrated Apple's new iDVD encoding software which uses Altivec (G4) instructions for encoding rates as fast as 1/2 real time (vs less than 1/20th real time without a hardware encoder he said). iDVD features typical Apple polished interface and ease of use. This software works with the "SuperDrive" DVD-R/CDRW combo drive noted below. Jobs noted uses like making your own movies as well as educational and business applications. Any modern DVD ROM drive should be able to play these DVD-R discs. Apple will sell DVD-R media at $10 each. [Prices later lowered to appx $5 each later in 2001.]

DVD Studio Pro is a higher end version that will sell for $995. iDVD is included with all Macs that ship with a SuperDisk (combo DVD-R/DVD ROM/CDRW drive). [iDVD2 for OS X was later released in mid-2001.]

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Apple's FREE iTunes Music/MP3/Net Radio Software:
Jobs is now demoing Apple's Music/MP3/Net Radio application that combines ease of use with the ability to rip audio CDs, burn MP3 CDs, write to MP3 players and play music from internet radio sites. iTunes runs on MacOS 9 and is Free! at (A reader said iTunes is also available in the Software folder of iDisk.) The first release officially supports only the CDRWs and Superdrive that ships in new Macs (but may work with other brands of CDRWs). Plugins to add support for more drives are promised in the next 60 days.
[Update - You can search the drive compatability database here for 3rd party CDRW/Combo drive, etc. reports which often includes comments on iTunes compatibility. The CDROM/CDR section of the FAQ also has some modified support files for some specific 'unsupported' drives.]
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Details on New Generation Macs (w/Nvidia Graphics Cards) Announced at MWSF Expo:
(Apple now has a PowerMac G4 product page with more info on the new systems)

    New PoweMac G4s: "Power to Burn"
  • 466Mhz to 733 MHz G4s
  • 4 models - 466MHz to 733MHz ($3499)
    Single CPU Models due to availability
    (dual 533MHz to be offered as BTO)
  • CDRW Standard in All Models
  • 133MHz Bus Speed
  • AGP 4X with write combing
  • Nvidia GeForce 2MX Graphics Card in top 3 models
  • 10W Digital Audio Amplifer
  • All models have 4 PCI Slots (+AGP)
  • Faster PCI Bus noted
  • Pioneer SuperDrive Combo DVD-R/CDRW/DVD ROM Std on 733MHz System
    (writes DVDs that can be read on DVD ROMs)
  • Superdrive acts as a standard disk on the desktop
    (no need to use CDRW burning software or DirectCD, etc.)
  • Pricing: $1699 (G4/466) to $3499 (733Mhz w/SuperDrive)
    (Top 2 models limited availability until Feb.)

They ran a similar Photoshop demo comparing a G4 733 Mhz vs Pentium 4 1.5GHz. In this 100+ action script, the G4 was 33% faster. [Update - See the systems page for 2001 G4 performance tests and related articles.]

15" LCD ADC Display Price Cut: Was $999, now $799. [later in 2001 the price was cut to $599.xx, with a 17" model debuting at $999. See the Video articles page, Displays section for a review of the 17" LCD display model.]

MacOS X Info: $129 and available at retail stores on Saturday, March 24th. Jobs did a long demo showing new features added as the result of feedback noting key concerns from beta testers. Customizable changes to the Dock, Toolbars, Fonts, and ways to emulate the old Finder window scheme were demonstrated to applause from the crowd. Over 75,000 feedback reports were read and categorized for incorporation into the final version.
Over 400 developers totalling 1,200 "name brand" applications for OS X were noted. During the keynote there was a demo of Alias Wavefront's Maya for Mac OS X. Alias noted the combination of OS X, a G4 and Maya was "awesome". They're going beta next week and shipping in the next quarter.

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Connectix DoubleTalk For Mac to PC Networking:
Connectix has a press release today on their new DoubleTalk Mac to PC networking utility. Suggested list price is $99. See their DoubleTalk product page for more info or to buy online.
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ADS Announces ATA/100 Firewire Raid & ATA/100 Firewire Case Kits:
ADS Technologies Inc., makers of the Pyro Firewire case kits (reviewed here previously) today announced an ATA/100 Pyro Firewire case kit as well as a dual drive Pyro Firewire Mac Video RAID. The Pyro Video RAID is a portable, compact tower where each drive has its own ATA/100 rated Oxford Semiconductor FireWire/ATA bridge The ATA/100 bridge is a first to my knowledge to be included in a Firewire case and provides more potential bandwidth than the host Firewire bus. (Firewire is a 50MB/sec (400Megabits/sec) max interface, ATA/100 is 100MB/sec max interface). The (single drive) Pyro ATA/100 Firewire case kit is claimed to be able to sustain up to 45MB/sec (depending on drive installed). No pricing on these products yet.
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ATTO Promises OS X Support for Entire Line of PCI SCSI Controllers:
ATTO has announced they will be providing updates to support Mac OS X for all their ExpressPCI family of Ultra3, Ultra2 and Ultra/WIDE SCSI controller cards, as well as their Fibre Channel adapters and ExpressRaid software. It's good to see support in their complete line, as Adaptec has released beta drivers for their 29160N and 39160 cards, but noted that there would be no support for some of their older cards like the 2940/3940 series cards.
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Sonnet Announces Dual G4 CPU Upgrade:
Sonnet has a press release on their "Encore/ST G4 Duet" G4 AGP (Sawtooth) dual G4/500 MHz processor upgrade. The "Duet" is expected to ship in February with a suggested list price of $999.95. [Price later dropped to $699.xx list. See the Systems page here for how some 'warranty voiding' mods put one of these cards in a G4 Cube.]
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PL BlueChip G3/500 Specials and Bundle Deals:
[Note - the info/pricing below was from Jan 2001 - prices on the Bluechip later fell _dramatically_, often selling for under $300. For a review of the Bluechip G3/500 in my PB G3 wallstreet - see the G3 reviews page and you can also search for owner reports in the CPU upgrades database.]
" Hi Mike,
We have some really great deals for the readers this week, starting off with the PowerLogix BlueChip G3/500 WallStreet upgrade.
It's priced by itself for $639.95- The best price out there!

And, even better, we've taken the most popular upgrades for the WallStreet and made some special bundles to go along with the PowerLogix BlueChip 500-

Bundle #1
PowerLogix BlueChip G3/500 & OWC 256mb SO-DIMM(full size) $734.95

Bundle #2
PowerLogix BlueChip G3/500 & IBM TravelStar 20gb 2.5" Hard Drive $829.95

Bundle #3
PowerLogix BlueChip G3/500, OWC 256mb SO-DIMM & IBM 20gb 2.5" TravelStar Hard Drive $929.95

All of these specials are listed on our site in detail, and all are also available through the XLR8YourMac specials page
PowerLogix page with descriptions
XLR8YourMac Specials Page
Jamie Dresser
Operations Manager
Other World Computing, Inc."

For a guide to installing drives in a PowerBook Wallstreet, see the Hard Drives section of the IDE Articles page or the PowerBook section of the Systems page.

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More Info on Macs and ATX Power Supplies:
In reply to yesterday's news post on PowerCenters w/ATX supplies, several readers wrote asking about Beige or B&W G3 systems. The Systems page G3 Macs section has articles on Beige and B&W G3 ATX case conversions which include comments on power supplies. (Beige G3 uses ATX compatible, B&W G3 has -5V pin difference).
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ATTO Tools 2.5 Network Drive Benchmark Tip:
A VAR reported in yesterday's news that networked volumes no longer appeared in Atto Tools v2.5. I wrote a contact at Atto that sent a workaround:

" Hi Mike,
We tested here on a Blue and White and were able to bench in 2.5. Althought the mounted network volume doesn't show up in EPT in the Volume Window. We highlighted one of the volumes in the Volume Window, went into Benchmark. Once the benchmark came up, we were able to select the network volume to bench. Let us know if you need anything else. If all else fails, just use the 2.4.1 for benching purposes.
Judy A. Barnas
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Iomega Announces Peerless Portable/Removable High Capacity Drives:
PCworld has an article on the Iomega "PeerLess" drives announced at CES. The drives will be Mac and PC compatible with capacities from 5GB to 20GB, featuring FireWire and USB 1.1 interface modules initially, with USB 2.0 and SCSI modules available at a later date.
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Adding 2 PCI Slots to Umax J700 (Followup/Guide)
" Although not exactly earth-shaking news, I figured that since you mentioned something on the front page (a few weeks ago) about adding 2 PCI slots to a J700, I thought you should know it was a success:
[Original forum post here with Connector P/Ns, etc.]

See my webpage
Tom P "

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Rate Your CPU Upgrade Database Updates:
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 10 new reports (total to date: 5,048). [Entries from after midnight will be added the following day.]

  • Apple OEM G4/350 ZIF in Beige G3 (rated 10)
  • Metabox G3/350 in 9500/132 (rated 8)
  • Newer Tech G3/500 in Beige G3 (rated 8)
  • Newer Tech G3/500 in 7500/100 (rated 2)
  • Powerlogix BlueChip G3/500 in PB G3 wallstreet2 (rated 10)
  • Powerlogix BlueChip G3/500 in PB G3 wallstreet2 (rated 10) [different reader]
  • Powerlogix G3/350 in PowerBase (rated 10)
  • Powerlogix G3/350 in 8600/300 (rated 10)
    (followup report after 7 months)

  • Apple G4/350 OC report
  • Apple G4/400 OC report

You can find these full reports by searching the database selecting the indicated Mac model and upgrade card brand/type. If you've upgraded the CPU on your Mac, please post an entry in the database. Search the database for entries from most every upgradable Mac model *before* you buy. (Searchable by mac model/upgrade brand)

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Mac Drive Compatibility Database Updates:
The Drive Compatibility searchable database had 10 new entries added (current total 2,429). Entries from after midnight are added the following day. Note: I've added "Firewire to SCSI Adapter" as an interface type. I welcome reports on drives used with adapters. (Please note the adapter brand/model and if the drive was bootable in your comments.)

    DVD ROM Drives:
  • IDE Hitachi GD-7000 in Beige G3
  • IDE Toshiba SD-M1212 (6x/32x) in Biege G3
    (same drive/system as in my Toshiba DVD ROM drive review)

    CDRW Drives:
  • IDE Sony CRX160E (12x/8x/32x) in Beige G3
  • IDE Yamaha 8824Ez (8x/8x/24x) in B&W G3
  • Firewire Sony CRX1600L (12x/8x/32x) w/Dual G4
  • Firewire Sony CRX1600L (12x/8x/32x) w/G4 AGP
  • USB Iomega ZipCD 650 w/Umax C500 (w/USB PCI card)

    Hard Drives:
  • IDE Maxtor 30GB in Dual G4
  • Firewire Western Digital 30GB w/PowerBook G3 2000
  • SCSI IBM UltraStar 18GB in 7600

You can find these full reports by searching the database with the drive/brand/mac models listed above selected (the latest reports are shown first in searches).
If you've added a IDE, SCSI, Firewire or USB hard drive, CDRW, tape drive, etc. make sure you add a report to the database.

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Rate Your Mac Games (Reader Reviews Database) Updated:
Today's Reader's Rate Their Mac Games database updates included reviews of Heavy Metal FAKK2 and Quake. Total reviews including all titles is 698. Since each review entry also notes system details like CPU type/speed, RAM and Video card type, these reviews are also good to see how well games play on various Mac models and video cards (important to know before you buy). If you've not already done so enter a game review.
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Software Updates, Apple TILs, Other Net News:
Reported By: Barney Buoy

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