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Amigaworld.net News   Amigaworld.net News : Interview with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
   posted by MikeB on 21-Nov-2003 12:24:39 (15815 reads)
AmigaWorld has interviewed Alan Redhouse, the managing director of the Eyetech Group, regarding the AmigaOne motherboards. The interview includes many questions suggested by AW members.

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PosterThread
Bodie 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 1:12:35
#81 ]
Super Member
Joined: 9-Jan-2003
Posts: 1438
From: Azjol-Nerub

Quote:
Pushing? I thought shoving wads of cash into his pocket would be more effective!


That comes after the push and shove!

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Anonymous 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 1:33:59
# ]



Quote:
Bodie:
Firstly welcome .jon.


Thanks and Hello!

Quote:
pods:
Are you speaking from a desktop users point of view? Alan (the creator/distributor/co-designer?) is mainly considering these boards for the industrial markets and other markets.


No, I am speaking from the "other markets" view you mention. If you re-read my post you will see I did not primarily address desktops, but Micro-Servers and HTPC streaming-clients.

The industrial market has less use for Mini-ITX than the consumer. Believe me. They have their own SBC systems with PC104 and so on.

But if you re-read mypost you will see, that I ackowledge Allan's better insight into the OEM/industrial market.

I spoke for the consumers. And sine I am co-admin on a EPIA/Mini-ITX site I know very well, who is paying the money. It's currently not so much the industry but all who want a system as small as possible, that accepts generic hardware and software.

Alan spoke about a "broader market". This is also a consumer market. There would be quite some people willing to run LinuxPPC on a Mini-ITX system when being presented with a CPU that is faster than a VIA C3 while still being coolable passively. And if the Mini-ITX A1 would come with Linux _and_ AmigaOS: Welcome new Amiga user !

Currently there is no real reason for an implementor of STB and similar things to decide for AmigaOS.

Linux is free of charge to them, Limux supports much more hardware and is equipped very well for modern media streaming as well as playback.

So, if somebody wants a small design, they might probably do it like Allwell:

http://www.allwell.tv/

These are based on the VIA EDEN platform (family member of EPIA and Mini-ITX) and run very powerful Linux middleware. AmigaOS will not even be close to this within the next two years. And: This is for free, AmigaOS is not.

As for the desktop I might want to add, that I have no interest personally in a generic A1. The reason is simple: I already have four computers in my living room/office, a LAN-server, a media-server, a workstation and my A4000. No need for more.
Except, if the PCI card of theat polnish company would make it, then I'd plug an A1 into my workstation, or as a Mini-ITX solution, since that does not steal real-estate.

Yes, I *am* myself the "other market" you mention ;)

 
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Anonymous 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 1:39:05
# ]



Quote:
Well, price structures on the Wintel market isn't nesessarily transferable to the Amiga market. Since Alan hasn't announced any prices yet, we'll need to see where these boards are placed price-wise.


Yeah, and since when is the Amiga market cheaper than the Wintel market ? And if you re-read my post you will see I was mainly talking about peripherals being expensive (slimline CD-ROM, 2.5" HDD, external, fanless PSU, cases), since this is what people usually want for their Mini-ITX systems.

This is stuff, Eyetech has not much influence on.

 
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pods 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 11:09:21
#84 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 7-Apr-2003
Posts: 339
From: Brunswick, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Yup i think i may have to agree with. Thats what most people on this site one, including a guy i know who has not interested in AmigaOS but the mini-tix PPC to stick it anywhere he wants :)

Apparantly also these boards could be great replacements for those people in the industry sector that already use Amiga's such as Queens Land Rail. Apparantly an Australian dealer sold them 200 odd a bout 2+/- years ago and their software has recently been ported to PPC. Or something like that... Anyway, the MicroA1 could be the savour for them as an MicroA1 would fit perfectly into an A1200 case and with an updated OS and new software to run their systems, they'd be runn'n quite smoothly.

Also i think these boards are being targeted at the home entertainment market, im not really sure what that means but basicly i think being able to control all you'r media needs through you'r Amiga. Im a bit scepticle about this market!

But the boards shows promising signs of being a good seller! I couldnt go wrong in a PPC render farm or something equivilent. Super computeR? :))) Heheh. Im sure these boards will sell pretty well, because they work well on the geeky fron and provide a nice upgrade path for those Amiga's still in use.

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Rogue 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 11:33:45
#85 ]
OS4 Core Developer
Joined: 14-Jul-2003
Posts: 3999
From: Unknown

Quote:
Yeah, and since when is the Amiga market cheaper than the Wintel market ?


If you re-read my post you will see that I wasn't implying it is cheaper What I was saying is that the MiniITX-Version of the AmigaOne might or might not be more expensive/cheaper than the ATX version, that's all.

Quote:
this is what people usually want for their Mini-ITX systems


True, but it doesn't have to be that way. You can build a MiniITX into a normal mini-tower, and use normal equipment for it. Assuming for a moment that the MiniITX would be cheaper than the ATX version, you could come up with a relatively inexpensive system.

Of course, the notebook type memory is going to stick around, making things a bit more expensive again.


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Skyraker 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 23-Nov-2003 20:18:29
#86 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 17-Jan-2003
Posts: 820
From: Essex, UK

A very nice interview, at least Alan (Unlike some one could mention) didn't blow sunshine up our asses...

.. however he did nicely sidestep the number of A1's sold....

Other than that.. top banana!


_________________
[quote]Amiga were also offered Amithlon before anyone else. I was the first to run it. It ROCKED HARD. I begged them to use it, we had a WINNER and could sell a bajillion of them. We owned all the rights to it! But sadly, Bill and Fleecy didn't want peopl

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CodeSmith 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 24-Nov-2003 9:45:34
#87 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 8-Mar-2003
Posts: 3045
From: USA

@pods:

Quote:
I couldnt go wrong in a PPC render farm or something equivilent. Super computeR? :))) Heheh.

It's not that farfetched... the current trend towards cheap supercomputers is to network a few hundred "regular" computers using software like Beowulf. The PPC has a big advantage here because it produces so little heat. In most big clusters the biggest headache is cooling the racks, so a few hundred networked micro-A1s should be a lot cheaper to maintain than a few hundred networked P4s. The P4s might be cheaper to buy, but the cooling bill over a few months will easily cover the difference. The ratio of KW/Mips of an intel or AMD chip is a lot higher than an equivalent PPC.

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Hammer 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 24-Nov-2003 10:42:05
#88 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 9-Mar-2003
Posts: 3945
From: Australia

Quote:
The PPC has a big advantage here because it produces so little heat. In most big clusters the biggest headache is cooling the racks, so a few hundred networked micro-A1s should be a lot cheaper to maintain than a few hundred networked P4s. The P4s might be cheaper to buy, but the cooling bill over a few months will easily cover the difference. The ratio of KW/Mips of an intel or AMD chip is a lot higher than an equivalent PPC.

With AMD64?s case and in performance terms; the ?heat? issues didn?t stop Cray's Red Storm being built**. K8 @1.4Ghz (includes speed-step style throttling) is not that "hot" compared to some X86 processors(e.g. K8 @2.2Ghz, PIV @3.2Ghz). There?s always the option of down clock the high clocked X86 processors.

Secondly, Intel has the "Pentium M" for the thin and light market. Pentium 4/Northwood is not the only X86 core in the market.

Please present a "Transaction per cost? and "transactions per minute" plan i.e. Transaction Processing Performance Council's TPC-C benchmark.

The gluing issues with non-integrated Northbridge processors is another issue to consider (MAI?s core logic consumes electricity in their own right).

**Also applicable to IBM?s Power 4 servers.


_________________
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Intel i7-7820X @ 4.5 Ghz, DDR4-3600 32 GB RAM, MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti

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Anonymous 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 24-Nov-2003 11:00:35
# ]



Oh the joys of dealing with the public !

 
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ikir 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 24-Nov-2003 11:34:57
#90 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 18-Dec-2002
Posts: 5646
From: Italy

Quote:
Oh the joys of dealing with the public !


Ah ah


_________________
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Sam460ex 1,15Ghz
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CodeSmith 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 24-Nov-2003 19:58:30
#91 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 8-Mar-2003
Posts: 3045
From: USA

@Hammer:

1. I said heat made the affair challenging, not impossible, and in my experience with laptops the auto-throttling kicks in very early and the CPU becomes 30%-50% slower very quickly. If you clock down the high-speed CPUs then they become no better than slow CPUs. I'm pretty sure a beowulf cluster of 286's or A500s would run pretty cool

2. The Pentium M is a very different chip than the Pentium 4, and it's been designed with heat management over computational power in mind, for laptop use (the "M" stands for "Mobile"). So in a sense it's a lot more like a PPC than an x86. Ars Technica has a couple of articles on this.

3. What's this? a court of law? the evidence is documented elsewhere. Go to the usual sites (eg Ars Technica or any number of Mac technical sites)

4. Mai's northbridges have been designed for embedded use, ie low-power - that's the reason why you need registered RAM. Plus, I don't think the embedded NB controller in an Opteron somehow avoids generating heat...

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Hammer 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 25-Nov-2003 3:31:08
#92 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 9-Mar-2003
Posts: 3945
From: Australia

Quote:
1. I said heat made the affair challenging, not impossible, and in my experience with laptops the auto-throttling kicks in very early and the CPU becomes 30%-50% slower very quickly. If you clock down the high-speed CPUs then they become no better than slow CPUs.

In terms IPC, full featured X86 cores would still beat VIA C3 (Nehemiah Core). Motherboards such as GA-7N400 Pro 2 motherboards can unlock the CPU?s multiplier thus giving users access to lower speeds (and lower voltages) e.g. 2.2Ghz (~76Watts) rated Athlon XP runs pretty cool @ 600Mhz.

There are other factors that slow down the Laptop?s overall speed e.g. ~4200 RPM hard disk.

Quote:
2. The Pentium M is a very different chip than the Pentium 4, and it's been designed with heat management over computational power in mind, for laptop use (the "M" stands for "Mobile"). So in a sense it's a lot more like a PPC than an x86. Ars Technica has a couple of articles on this.

?Pentium M? was cited because Intel offers another X86 core for a particular segment.


_________________
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Intel i7-7820X @ 4.5 Ghz, DDR4-3600 32 GB RAM, MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti

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Hammer 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 25-Nov-2003 3:51:25
#93 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 9-Mar-2003
Posts: 3945
From: Australia

Quote:

4. Mai's northbridges have been designed for embedded use, ie low-power - that's the reason why you need registered RAM.

Registered RAM modules has very little to do with being in "thin and light" usage. Note that Registered RAM modules was also being use in Xeon, Opteron, Athlon MP, Power4, IA-64 and ?etc?.

To illustrate my point, AmigaOne was said to be able to use some unregistered SDRAM modules.
SODIMM packagings are the ?thin and light? RAMs i.e. use in Laptops.

I recall, MAI?s chipset can also support Pentium II processor.

Quote:

Plus, I don't think the embedded NB controller in an Opteron somehow avoids generating heat...

It?s the glue issue when comes to scaling i.e.
solely clustering solution Vs NUMA architecture + clustering solution.

With embedded NB controller; the Motherboard design is simpler since it negates the use of NB chip.

For example;
1. (CPU + RAM) + (CPU + RAM) + (CPU + RAM) + (CPU + RAM + SB**) + 'etc'

** For I/O with users.

VS

2. (CPU + NB + RAM) + (CPU + NB + RAM) + (CPU + NB + RAM + SB**) + 'etc'.

VS
(as in A1's case)
3. (CPU + NB + RAM + SB) + (CPU + NB + RAM + SB) +(CPU + NB + RAM + SB) + 'etc'.

PS; A thin LCD-TFT monitor** with a built-in A1 would be very nice with my existing setup.

**Can be use as the following;
1. A full featured SVGA compatible monitor (for the high performance X86 PC),
2. A thin client PC (A1 with AmigaOS4).
3. A near portable tablet PC (via A1 i.e. ~15 inch PAD like device).
4. TV (if supplied with necessary connectors).


_________________
AmigaOS 4.1 FE U1 + MS Windows 10 Pro X64
Intel i7-7820X @ 4.5 Ghz, DDR4-3600 32 GB RAM, MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti

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thetao 
Re: Interview with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 25-Nov-2003 7:24:46
#94 ]
Member
Joined: 24-Sep-2003
Posts: 19
From: USA

> remember that the original A1 specs said that the ROM would be non
> reflashable (in fact an PROM). Making them reflashable was a later
> change after different anti-piracy mechanisms were built into the
> A1 boards.

This is news to me. So the ROM is no longer performing double-duty as a dongle? Does anyone know what new anti-piracy mechanisms were added to the A1...at least in general? The non-flashable ROM always annoyed me, because it stood in the way of including a large (8MB ?), user-updatable Kickstart chip (since a user-updatable ROM lessens the effectiveness of any anti-piracy code inside). With that function removed, future AmigaOne boards might now include a large, flashable ROM.

Of course, using an internal Cardbus memory card seems like an interesting idea, too.

Todd

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GrumpyOldMan 
Re: Interview with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 25-Nov-2003 11:22:02
#95 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 3-Nov-2003
Posts: 675
From: Haukipudas, Finland

Excellent interview indeed, but I am a bit confused about the situation.

Are all AmigaOne owners (I own a A1-XE) qualified to receive OS4 beta? i remember the term 'Earlybird' being used for those very first A1-SE motherboards and systems - has the use of this term been extended to cover all A1 buyers so far?

If answer is yes, how do I make absolutely sure I get my copy of OS4 beta?


_________________
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ssolie 
Re: Interview with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 25-Nov-2003 17:40:49
#96 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 10-Mar-2003
Posts: 2740
From: Alberta, Canada

Quote:
Are all AmigaOne owners (I own a A1-XE) qualified to receive OS4 beta? i remember the term 'Earlybird' being used for those very first A1-SE motherboards and systems - has the use of this term been extended to cover all A1 buyers so far?


The early bird offer has been extended to include all AmigaOne purchasers until the AmigaOS 4.0 release date is announced.

Quote:
If answer is yes, how do I make absolutely sure I get my copy of OS4 beta?


Talk to your dealer. Make sure they have sent in your name to Eyetech. If you have access to the private AmigaOne mailing lists, you're in!


_________________
ExecSG Team Lead

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Anonymous 
Re: Dear Allan!
Posted on 29-Nov-2003 10:24:43
# ]



Quote:
Also i think these boards are being targeted at the home entertainment market, im not really sure what that means but basicly i think being able to control all you'r media needs through you'r Amiga. Im a bit scepticle about this market!


Oh, it is sort of booming. The number of people who stick a Mini-ITX board into self-made cases, old DVD Players or VCR is growing.

I mean, just look at latest products from Panasonic, SONY and Philips. Dell and others even...

Definition: DVD Player

a machine consisting of a DVD drive with control logic, some memory and one or more processors, enabling replay of the digital information stored within the DVD.

Definition: PC

a machine consisting of several discs (incl. DVD) with control-logic, some memory and several processors, enabling of "replay" of the software stored on the discs. In addition to the DVD player, this is a generic machine allowing for the "replay" of any type of data.

One-For-All. I have replaced my complete AV rack with a single HiFi sized computer. I have a networking server for MP3 Jukebox, DVB and analog TV, Radio (FM and Shoutcast), and in addition I can play MAME and UAE games on it :) as well as Internet.
Well, the software ain't perfect, but I am working on it :)

Oh, and I plan to enable clients as well, being served from the server...

 
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