Apple Cube running Pentium M

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coius's picture
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This is taken off of the danaquarium site

http://www.danaquarium.com/article.php?story=2005022810275733

U-Power - a boutique PC manufacturer from Korea - is set to release an accelerator designed for the Power Macintosh G4 Cube. Unlike previous upgrades the PCube doesn't contain a G4 - or indeed any other PowerPC Chip - but brings Pentium-M power to Apple's venerable Cube.

U-Power's US spokesman Rudy Keppelmeyer explains that the PCube upgrade is designed not for conventional Mac users, instead aims for those PC users who admire the G4 Cube's design but don't want to run PowerPC software such as Mac OS, Mac OS X or Linux.

"There are a substantial number of people who love Apple's hardware from a design point of view, but who have no desire to run Apple software," says Keppelmeyer. "This upgrade is theirs. For people out of the ordinary."

The upgrade is based on the powerful mobile version of Intel's Pentium, the Pentium-M, and initial boards will be available in either 1.5 or 1.8GHz versions with 2MB L2 cache, manufactured on Intel's 90nm process.

Keppelmeyer explains that the innovative new upgrade is more than just a processor card. "There's a substantial difference between a G4 processor card and one with a Pentium onboard, and we've put the hard work in to ensure Windows compatibility."

"Not the least of our problems was working around the Cube's open firmware, the Mac equivalent if you like to a PC's BIOS. We have glue logic sitting in a layer over the top of open firmware allowing the real BIOS to believe it's interacting directly with the hardware" says Keppelmeyer. "Combined with a small layer of emulation to allow the execution of open firmware code, any software that runs on the PCube upgrade believes it's running on a PC with the same specifications as a Macintosh Cube".

Performance is expected to be slightly below the level of a similarly equipped PC, as the PCube cards must operate with the Cube's dated 133MHz memory bus. U-Power is already working on a solution, claiming an upcoming replacement daughterboard for the Cube will allow it to use faster DDR memory, faster wireless and other features using Intel's Centrino chipset.

"We don't believe this will be an issue with our target market, people who will finally have the Cube they've desired and be able to run their favorite software with it."

The PCube 1.5 and PCube 1.8 upgrades are compatible with Microsoft Windows XP Home, Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003, when used with the U-Power supplied drivers that allow Windows full access to the Cube's hardware.

Both upgrades will be available early next month, priced at $US399 and $US449 respectively. A 2.13GHz version is planned by late Summer.

anyone have opinions on this?

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coius's picture
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I smell a lawsuit

they had to have reverse-engineered the OF and ROM on the system...

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token's picture
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Seems like it would be better

Seems like it would be better just to get a cube enclosure and build your own box. I don't really a huge market for this "upgrade."

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BS

I just posted this on slashdot like two days ago, I think it's a bunch of crap because the same guy posted about a preacher suing for copyright under the dmca, that apple released a powerbook and ibook mini in january, a 6 year old getting in trouble because her computer said she was using "illegal instructions" and the site it self says "don't believe anything you read on the internet"

coius's picture
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actually...

it does sound like it could happen

i mean, hardware is hardware. Apple just limits theirs.
I have seen a 486/Pentium run on a powermac and share the same bus as it. If you can get around the OF, then you can do anything that you wish to do with the hardware...

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coius's picture
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umm, may i remind you

macintel?

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Re: umm, may i remind you

coius wrote:

macintel?

Oh, I have no doubt that it COULD happen, but realistically the poster is a lying doof, and why release a processor upgrade that could only work on a specific (relatively unpopular) mac? It would make sense to do this for the sawtooth\quicksilver\gigabit line as there are still many of those floating around and while still powerful are showing their age. If anyone were to do it, I think they'd probably do it that way, or even for a zif socket as that would include ALL zif processor upgrades, beige macs, b&w macs, and even yikes! g4's. Probably would be easier to find a market that way. Cool idea, I was even fooled for a bit, but read the site further and you'll realize the guy is REALLY good at lying.

coius's picture
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heh heh...

i would like to throw the OS Xi onto it. instead of paying $999 for the hardware dev kit.

EDIT: he may be lying, but only time will tell.

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coius's picture
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shoulda looked into it

I guess it is a hoax, the only refference site i could find was the original. sorry guys. You can delete this post if you want (or lock it)

but man, this would be awesome. A cheap macintel to run the pre-release of the OS X intel version

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DrBunsen's picture
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Ahem.
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