Sonnet has just announced a price drop of approximately $250
on their Encore G3/366/183/1MB ZIF socket processor upgrade
for G3 Macintoshes. The new price of the card is about $700
(the new price should be showing up at retailers shortly,
though you may find the old price at the moment). With 400Mhz
ZIF socket cards selling for over $1,200 we thought we would
take a look at whether you are just wasting that extra $500-600
that you would have to shell out if you opted for the 400Mhz
card over the 366Mhz.
Below you will find MacBench benchmarks comparing the two
Encore cards from Sonnet expressed as a percentage of improvement.
The actual MacBench 4.0 results are 1350 for
the 366Mhz card and 1475 for the 400Mhz card.
So you are paying roughly $600 more for an extra 9% of performance!
How does that effect the overall price/performance ratio of
Let's see, card price divided by MacBench score gives us
the following cost per performance point:
Encore G3/366 = 52 cents per performance point (700/1350=.52)
Encore G3/400 = 88 cents per performance point (1300/1475=.88)
Or the Encore G3/400 is 69% more expensive per performance
point than the Encore G3/366 - what would you buy?
How do these cards perform compared to their targeted machines
Conclusion: There is clearly at this time, given the price/performance
differences, little reason to opt for the 400Mhz cards unless,
like Gates and Trump, you are the kind of person that lights
your cigars with 100 dollar bills! Will this price/performance
disparity last? Probably not. One of two things are perhaps
going on; Sonnet is phasing out the 366Mhz card and wants
to clear out inventory before faster cards come out or there
is going to be a general lowering of prices on all ZIF cards
coming and the 366Mhz cards are just the first.
Mike is a freelance writer and writes
occasional articles for MacSpeedZone
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