CPUs: PowerPC G5

The G5 is a 64-bit member of the PowerPC processor family that is fully compatible with 32-bit code. It was first used when the Power Mac G5 was introduced in June 2003. Only three different versions of the chip were produced before Apple made the move to Intel CPUs in 2006. IBM was the only manufacturer […]

VAIO: Did You Miss Me?

We almost lost VAIO, Sony’s brand for its nicest looking PCs. Visually, Sony seems to be the only one trying to take on Apple design without simply copying what Apple is doing.

Security Glitch in Android 4.3 Impacts 10.6% of Devices

According to Security Intelligence, Android 4.3, the version just prior to current 4.4 Kit Kat, suffers from a security flaw in the Android KeyStore service. This is the part of Android that secures your password, PINs, login info, etc., making it a particularly nasty vulnerability. At this point, approximately 10.3% of Android users are version 4.3. (Not 86%, as […]

CPUs: PowerPC G4

First available in the Power Mac G4 in late 1999, the G4 processor is to the G3 as the 604 was to the 603 – and then some! Like the 604, and unlike the G3, G4 is designed for multiprocessor operation. It also runs about 25% faster for basic floating point math calculations and has a built-in […]

CPUs: PowerPC G3

Arthur, legendary King of England, became the code-name for the third generation PowerPC (PPC) processor, eventually named the 740 and 750. The successor of the 603e, these third-generation CPUs were optimized to run real software, not for some theoretical ideal.

CPUs: PowerPC 604 and 604e

The “power user” second generation PowerPC (PPC) CPU was the 604, unveiled in December 1994 along with the 603. Containing 3.6 million transistors, drawing twice the power of the 601, and with a dual L1 cache (16 KB for instructions, 16 KB for data), this workhorse could deal with four instructions per cycle. The 604 […]

CPUs: PowerPC 603 and 603e

The second generation split the PowerPC (PPC) line into entry level 603 and power user 604 chips. The 603 has only 1.6 million transistors, draws about half as much power as the 601, has two smaller caches (8 KB for instructions, 8 KB for data vs. a 32 KB unified cache in the 601), and […]

CPUs: PowerPC 601

The biggest change in the Apple product line prior to 2006 was the transition from Motorola 680×0 CPUs to the PowerPC (PPC) family of CPUs. Designed by a consortium of Apple, IBM, and Motorola (a.k.a. the AIM Alliance) and based on IBM’s POWER architecture, PowerPC became the most widely used RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computing) processor with […]

CPUs: Motorola 68040

The Quadra 700 and 900 introduced the 68040 in 1991. In great part due to a much larger L1 cache (4 KB for data and 4 KB for instructions vs. 256 bytes in the 68030) and parts of the CPU running at twice clock speed, the 68040 provides 2.5-3 times the performance of the 68030 at […]

CPUs: Motorola 68030

Apple introduced the Mac IIx, which has a 16 MHz 68030 CPU, in September 1988. The 68030 incorporates the memory management unit (MMU), which was a separate chip for the 68020, giving the ‘030 the ability to use virtual memory (VM) with third-party software, although Apple didn’t include VM as part of the Mac OS until System 7 in […]

CPUs: Motorola 68020

Apple took a big step when it introduced the 68020-based Mac II in March 1987. The new computer was modular, not an all-in-one design like the first four Macs. In addition to 6 expansion slots, a huge power supply, color support, and room for two floppy drives and an internal hard drive, the Mac II runs its […]

CPUs: Motorola 68000

The earliest personal computers used 8-bitCPUs (central processing units). Apple, Commodore, Rockwell, and Atari designed their computers around the MOS Tech 6502; Radio Shack’s Color Computer used the Motorola 6809; and most others, including the Radio ShackTRS-80 and all CP/M computers, used the Zilog Z-80 or Intel 8080. All ran in the 1-4 MHz range and […]

CPUs: Intel Pentium

Intel chose Pentium as the name for its next generation CPU, avoiding the expected 80586 designation – because numbers cannot be trademarked, but names can. The Pentium originally shipped at 60 and 66 MHz in 1993 and eventually reached speeds as high as 200 MHz in 1995. It has 3.1 million transistors using 0.8 micron technology at the […]

CPUs: Intel 80486

From the 8080 through the 80386, CPUs gained most of its improved performance from greater clock speed and a wider data bus. With the next generation, released in 1989 and 1990 respectively, both Intel and Motorola (in their 680×0 family) worked on making their processors more efficient.

CPUs: Intel 80386 and 80386SX

The 80386 initially shipped at 16 MHz with sample quantities in October 1985 and release to manufacture in early 1986. At 16 MHz, it has a higher clock speed than any Intel version of the 80286. Although the ‘386 includes the same addressing modes as the 8086 and ‘286, it also included new addressing modes, including one […]

CPUs: Intel 80286

Intel’s 80286 CPU, introduced in February 1984, was the first big step forward from the 8088 CPU used in the original IBM PC and a host of PC compatibles.

CPUs: Intel 8086 and 8088

The IBM PC of August 1981 was build around Intel’s 8088 processor, a CPU released over two years earlier in June 1979. The 8088 itself was designed as a version of Intel’s 16-bit 8086, but on an 8-bit bus instead of a 16-bit bus. Although this made the 8088 a bit less efficient than the 8086, it […]

CPUs: Intel 8080 and Zilog Z-80

Although the Intel 8080 never ran MS-DOS, it is the direct predecessor of the 8086 and 8088 CPUs used in the first IBM PC. The 2 MHz 8080 was released on April 1, 1974 and formed the core of the first personal computers, the MITS Altair 8800 and the IMSAI 8080.

Just Wait

I must respectfully disagree with the new focus of Low End, er, make that High End Mac. Simply replacing your old Mac every two years, or three at most, isn’t the whole solution to Apple’s financial crisis or the consumer’s lust for power.