The upgrade wars have officially recommenced with an announcement today from PowerLogix. The company has introduced G4 upgrades for some PowerMac models along with G4 Cubes as well. The new upgrade cards will offer processor speeds from 750 MHz to 1 GHz, and will be powered by Motorolais "Apollo" G4 processor, a recent addition to the G4 processor line.
Upgrade manufacturers saw their heyday during the Clone era of Mac OS licensing. Coinciding with the return of Steve Jobs and the end of the Clone era, the speed with which upgrade manufacturers were able to offer faster upgrades plummeted. Manufacturers such as Sonnet, PowerLogix, and the once and future Newer Technology were maxed out at 550 MHz for more than two years. This announcement from PowerLogix likely heralds a return to competition in the upgrade market from all of the players. From PowerLogix:
PowerLogix today announced the fastest ever processor upgrade cards for PowerMac G4s. The new PowerForce G4 Series 100 and Series 133 processor upgrades will be available in speeds ranging from 750Mhz to 1GHz.
With the new PowerForce G4, PowerLogix continues to lead the market in new upgrade card designs. These are the first and only upgrade cards to use the latest and fastest technology from Motorola--the G4/7455 processor, code named "Apollo."
The Apollo has four integer execution units, one double precision FPU, and four 128-bit AltiVec execution units. It also has a 256KB on-chip L1 cache running at full processor speed. The PowerForce G4 will be available with varying amounts of L3 cache.
The PowerForce G4 processor upgrade simply replaces the stock processor card. The user removes the original processor card and installs the PowerForce G4 card in its place. It installs easily in just a few minutes by following the included instructions. Installation is about as simple as installing memory.
The PowerForce G4 Series 100 upgrade cards are compatible with the following PowerMac G4s running at 100 MHz bus:
Model_____________________Original Clock SpeedPowerMac G4 iAGP Graphicsi 350, 400, 450 MHz PowerMac G4 iGigabit Etherneti Single 400, Dual 450 or 500 MHz PowerMac G4 Cube 450, 500 MHz
The PowerForce G4 Series 133 upgrade cards are compatible with PowerMac G4s running at 133 MHz bus:
Model_____________________Original Clock SpeedPowerMac G4 iDigital Audioi 466, 533, 667, 733, Dual 533 MHz PowerMac G4 iQuickSilveri 733, 867, Dual 800 MHz PowerMac G4 iQuickSilver 2002i 800, 933, Dual 1GHz
Note: We recommend the PowerForce G4 ZIF 550 for use with the PowerMac G4 iPCI Graphicsi.
PowerLogix says that the retail pricing for these cards will range from US$449 to US$749, though the company did not offer a breakdown. The PowerForce G4 Series 100 line will be available in July, while the PowerForce G4 Series 133 will be available in August. The company has not added specific information about these cards to its Web site with the exception of the above press release.