667 Gets Eighty-Sixed

If you don't already own a 667MHz Power Mac G4 or have an order pending for one, it's likely that you'll never get your hands on that machine. Apple has stopped taking orders for the 667MHz configuration of its G4 Macs, and it doesn't appear that the company will resume taking those orders anytime in the foreseeable future.

"As [a] result of Motorola's dramatically improved supply of 733MHz processors and the strong demand for our highest performance systems, Apple is no longer taking orders for 667MHz configurations," Apple spokeswoman Nathalie Welch told Macworld via e-mail. The 667MHz option has even been dropped from Apple's online store. Outstanding orders, however, will be fulfilled.

MacUser UK first reported that Apple was phasing out the 667MHz machine due to lack of interest in the mid-range model, and in order to free up production for the 733MHz configuration. The 667MHz model had the same built-in memory and hard drive capacity as the 733MHz G4. But the 733MHz model also featured the SuperDrive that lets users write both CDs and DVDs in addition to the extra megahertz for just $700 more than the $2,799 667MHz G4.

Shipping delays have plagued both system configurations since they were announced at Macworld Expo in January. Discontinuing one line should enable Motorola to concentrate more efficiently on the other. Indeed, Welch confirmed that the move "will enable the production of more Power Mac G4 733MHz systems," though she referred additional questions on the PowerPC chip to Motorola.

Motorola was unavailable for comment due to the Easter holiday.

Although no new 667MHz orders are being taken for the time being, Welch declined to speculate as to whether or not Apple would resume doing so. "I cannot make a forward looking statement as in 'permanently,'" said Welch.

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