Apple resellers will have a lot of marketing support from the company to help sales when the dual processor version of the Power Mac G5 begins shipping, according to a company executive.

“”There is a huge marketing and partnership opportunity,”” said Mary Percat, channel strategy and development

manager at Apple Canada Inc.

These include two direct mail campaigns – one using the vendor’s database of leads, the other using names provided by authorized resellers – inviting people to resellers for G5 demonstrations, a CD for conducting demonstrations, customized sales materials and sales training.

In addition, those who show up for demos will receive a stopwatch – a tie into the speed theme the marketing emphasizes – and be entered for a draw for a G5.

She wouldn’t say how much Apple is spending on the Canadian campaign.

“”We’re really trying to support our reseller community in a robust way by taking the marketing cost out of their pockets.””

The dual-processor models will begin shipping shortly. Single-processor versions have already been released. Both are aimed at graphics and audio professionals as well as the scientific community.

However, a Toronto reseller which buys direct from Apple says customers may have to wait more than a month for the machines.

Matthew Rondina, computer sales manager at Number 9 Technologies, said Tuesday the vendor’s corporate site indicates a four to six week wait for orders.

Still, there’s a “”huge demand”” for the singe processor version desktops, he said.

“”It’s amazing technology,”” he said. “”It’s a step up Apple has needed over the competition for a little while now.

“”They’ve put the PC back in its place.””

The dual-processor version, which has a suggested retail price of $4,199, comes with 2.0Ghz 64-bit PowerPC processors; dual independent 1 Ghz front side busses; 512 MB of 128-bit DDR memory running at 400 Mhz; a 160 GB serial ATA hard drive; and an ATI Radeon 9600 64 MB graphics card.

The single processor G5 can be bought with either a 1.6 Ghz processor, 265 MB of memory and an 80 GB hard drive for $2,799, or a 1.8 Ghz processor, 512 MB of memory and a 160 GB hard drive for $3,399.

One of the benefits resellers can tout about the G5 is that it can take up to 8GB of memory, said Bruce Hough, an Apple Canada consulting engineer.

“”It’s not just a very fast processor,”” he said in an interview. “”The whole system was designed to be fast from the ground up.””

However, he said that while parts of the OS X operating system have been optimized to take advantage of the 64-bit processors, it hasn’t been entirely re-written.

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