Apple is countering criticism that its new Power Mac G4s lack the muscle demanded by professional creatives.

An eight-page report on the subject has been published by independent research firm, Pfeiffer Consulting. Apple is listed as a client by the company.

The report claims that peak Adobe Photoshop performance is more than four times faster on the new 1.25GHz G4 Power Mac compared to the 500MHz Power Mac G4. It claims Adobe Illustrator and InDesign offer up to 2.5 times the performance on the new high-end Mac, and that performance improvements in the new G4 line-up are consistent with hardware specifications.

It also states that opening a 200MB Photoshop file from an Xserve over Gigabit Ethernet was faster than opening the same file from the local hard drive. "Overall productivity in the design and publishing workflow benchmark is almost twice as fast on the new high-end model," the authors claim.

The full report is available for download.

The report comes as Apple publicizes its new free online seminar called Pros say Go to Mac OS X, designed to ramp-up its educational support for OS X users.

The seminar promises hints, tips and tricks from industry experts, as well as briefs on Apple colour, font and printing technologies. There will also be video tutorials on solutions from Apple, DiamondSoft, GretagMacbeth and HP.

Apple says: "Take some time to discover straight from other hard-working creative professionals how Mac OS X brings new ease to the way you organize fonts, deliver precise colour proofs, print projects flawlessly and work wirelessly. Learn how the power, stability and built-in technologies of OS X can inspire."

Mac users interested in the seminar have to register, and need QuickTime 6 installed, as well as a compatible Web browser (Safari is not listed). Apple has an extensive selection of seminars available online for business, creative, sci-tech and Internet users.