"This pretty much matches the fastest Pentium Pro systems [in performance]," said Linley Gwennap, editor in chief of the industry newsletter Microprocessor Report.
The 604e PowerPC processor is a significant improvement over its forerunner, the plain-vanilla 604. The internal cache is doubled from 32K to 64K, and IBM's new manufacturing process allows much higher speeds. The current model cranks up to 225 MHz, but future renditions are expected to go as high as 300 MHz.
Other PowerTower Pro systems introduced today use 200-MHz and 180-MHz PowerPC chips. All the systems feature 128-bit graphics accelerators, 16MB of memory, 8X CD-ROM drives, six PCI slots, and 1MB of Level 2 Cache.
A PowerTower Pro 225 with a 2GB hard disk drive and a Twin Turbo 128-bit graphics accelerator with 8MB video memory will sell for $4,995.