AnandTech reviews Mac OS X Tiger and finds that Quartz 2D Extreme is not enabled

Anand Lal Shimpi takes an in-depth look at Apple’s new Mac OS X Tiger operating system for AnandTech. It’s a very thorough review and worth taking the time to read it through. One issue in particular stood out. Anand Lal Shimpi writes:

“Quartz 2D Extreme, the complete handling of UI rendering and compositing by the GPU, is not enabled in the release version of OS X Tiger. As such, users of Quartz 2D Extreme supported GPUs gain no performance benefits in Tiger as the CPU is still left to handle all UI rendering and the GPU handles all compositing after the CPU renders the interfaces to textures in AGP memory. The only benefit modern day GPUs offer in Tiger (other than their improved performance in 3D applications) is that there are certain visual effects that are only enabled if you have a GPU that supports Tiger’s Core Image. For example, when dropping a widget onto the Dashboard, you get a very nice ripply-wave effect on GPUs that support Core Image; and on those that don’t, there’s no effect. But from a performance standpoint, there’s no benefit to either ATI’s Radeon X800 XT Mac Edition or NVIDIA’s GeForce 6800 Ultra DDL.”

Full article, highly recommended along with the Ars Technica review listed below, here.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Ars Technica: Mac OS X Tiger ‘at least twice as significant as any single past update’ – April 28, 2005

25 Comments

  1. Found the following at Macfixit- apparently Apple is copying Microsofts approach to OS’s by installing programs that report back to the Mother Ship. This is why I try not to use MS software, and also why I won’t install Tiger until I find out why Jobs needs to know more about my computer:

    “dmnotifyd” apparently sending Apple user information Several users have reported that an application called “dnotifyd” is sending system information back to Apple.

    “Since my upgrade last night to Tiger, I have noticed something going on in the background. This was never observed in the past, but thanks to Little Snitch I ‘caught’ this one.

    “This particular app is attempting to contact ‘configuration.apple.com’ every few minutes. I don’t have a packet sniffer, but am curious just exactly why Apple needs to ‘check my configuration’ every few minutes.

  2. i installed tiger on my powerbook over the weekend. the first thing i noticed was how much faster it is than panther. whew! the second and third things i noticed were how ugly the widgets look. they’re like candy-colored toys. i also noticed the change in the color blue of the apple and the Spotlight icons in the menu bar. they, along with the drop down Spotlight interface, look un-mac-like. they reminded me of Wiindows XP. I hope apple changes these as they are either ugly or remind me too much of microsoft. i imagine someone will come out with better looking widgets or ways to change the ‘skins’ of these.

  3. The disabled Quartz 2D Extreme situation was also noted in the Ars Technica review.

    That review also documented how much faster CPU-based Quartz has become under Tiger (so all supported systems benefit). Therefore, it is inaccurate to say that users of supported GPUs “get no performance benefit” from 10.4. More accurately, they get no ADDITIONAL benefit (yet).

    Apparently, Quartz 2D Extreme isn’t fully debugged. Bummer.

  4. Pretty good article to link to.

    It’s nice to see MDN pointing to some reasonable and rational material for a change.

    Maybe the “fanatics” will give the “dual-users” a break for not becoming “switchers”.


    Mac & PC Guy
    Dual-User

  5. Pretty good article to link to.

    It’s nice to see MDN pointing to some reasonable and rational material for a change.

    Maybe the “fanatics” will give the “dual-users” a break for not becoming “switchers”.


    Mac & PC Guy
    Dual-User

  6. Pretty good article to link to.

    It’s nice to see MDN pointing to some reasonable and rational material for a change.

    Maybe the “fanatics” will give the “dual-users” a break for not becoming “switchers”.


    Mac & PC Guy
    Dual-User

  7. No no no…..I was at Comp USA and the Apple guy did a demo on the latest G5 Tower and I saw the ripple he did mention that depending on the video card that supports it or not you will not see a ripple effect on stock machines with a G4 or below. That was one of the first things he mentioned. I guess they informed him on that issue.

  8. Installed it on my dual 2.0 G5 with ATI Radeon 9800 Pro. It gets ripple effect. Installed on my 17 inch 1Ghz PowerBook G4 with GeForce 4MX, and it gets no ripple effect. Installed for client on 15 inch 1.5GHz PowerBook G4 with ATI 9700. It gets ripple effect.

  9. Grandpa: thanks for making me worry: seems it’s a.Mac related thing.

    Terminal output:

    Welcome to Darwin!
    Sisko:~ $ sudo find / |grep dmnotify
    /private/etc/mach_init_per_user.d/dmnotify.plist
    /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/DMNotification.framework/Versions/A/Resources/dmnotifyd
    Sisko:~ $ sudo cat /private/etc/mach_init_per_user.d/dmnotify.plist
    <?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”UTF-8″?>
    <!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC “-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN” “http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd”>

    <dict>
    <key>ServiceName</key>
    <string>com.apple.dotmac.notification</string>
    <key>Command</key>
    <string>/System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/DMNotification.framework/Resources/dmnotifyd</string>
    <key>OnDemand</key>
    <true>
    </dict>
    </plist>

    Sisko:~ $

    Have fun!

  10. Jeroen: “Grandpa: thanks for making me worry: seems it’s a.Mac related thing.”

    Yup. It’s seems that it only happens when you have you computer set to automatically sync with .mac.

    Apple is NOT secretly sending information to the mother ship.

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