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OS X Graphics API's: OpenGL vs Metal vs Vulkan

OS X Metal API OpenGL Vulkan DirectX Performance

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#81 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 09:32 AM

Thanks for submitting all these everyone. The results are puzzling, but this will definitely help shape our perception of metal.
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#82 macdude22

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 09:33 AM

Benchmarks are fine I still want a game to run against. You know, stuff like will metal make Ark go from a slideshow to playable on a Mac. That sort of thing. :teehee:
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#83 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 09:40 AM

Ya, it's really disappointing that we'll have to wait for a game to come out.

The earliest we can truly test Metal performance looks to be this fall.
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#84 Camper-Hunter

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Posted 25 February 2016 - 04:29 PM

View Poststroehman, on 24 February 2016 - 08:56 AM, said:

Think this benchmark tool need some work. The D700 should blow past the D300
The benchmark must be CPU limited, at least at low resolution like this (1080p). But a good graphics benchmark shouldn't be CPU limited, because it's worthless otherwise...

#85 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 25 February 2016 - 06:09 PM

View PostCamper-Hunter, on 25 February 2016 - 04:29 PM, said:

The benchmark must be CPU limited, at least at low resolution like this (1080p). But a good graphics benchmark shouldn't be CPU limited, because it's worthless otherwise...

He has a pretty boss CPU as well. You'd think he'd blow past any of the CPU's in the other Mac's, with the exception of the top end iMac.
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#86 ozzy

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 01:42 PM

View PostSneaky Snake, on 25 February 2016 - 06:09 PM, said:

He has a pretty boss CPU as well. You'd think he'd blow past any of the CPU's in the other Mac's, with the exception of the top end iMac.

I think it's more that if it's CPU limited than the D700 wouldn't be that much better than the D300 in the same Mac Pro machine?

#87 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 01:48 PM

View Postozzy, on 26 February 2016 - 01:42 PM, said:

I think it's more that if it's CPU limited than the D700 wouldn't be that much better than the D300 in the same Mac Pro machine?

Ya that would be correct. If it's CPU limited the D700's wouldn't gain much on the 300's. I misread your earlier post.
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#88 marksatt

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:12 PM

View PostMichalM.Mac, on 18 February 2016 - 02:06 AM, said:

Hmm so we might get first Metal game after next OS X release which could include some missing features devs want.

btw there are extremely interesting posts by Unreal engine dev in this thread http://forums.macrum....1825150/page-7

That'd be me. I've not logged in to IMG in years; I rarely have since I was writing reviews for Tuncer back in the dim & distant past before I worked for Feral. I'm now responsible for Mac graphics development in UE4 @ Epic - so I should know what's going on with Mac Metal support in UE4...

View PostSneaky Snake, on 11 January 2016 - 11:00 AM, said:

The following studios/developers are confirmed to be supporting Metal:
  • Unreal Engine - Already support Metal on iOS; OS X support is unknown at this time

Since myself and other fine folks from Epic, AMD, Apple & Nvidia slogged our collective guts out for weeks to get Mac Metal support in UE4 up & running well enough to power the live Mac Fortnite demo shown in the WWDC '15 Keynote I'd like to politely ask for this to be edited!

As we (Epic) said at WWDC '15 Mac Metal support would be in Fortnite on Mac and then in the main UE4 version as soon as possible. Due to the huge amount of work involved and various timing snafus (where Epic & Apple deadlines most certainly did not coincide) Fortnite's closed Alpha Mac build finally added Metal support as an option in late January. Main-line support for Mac Metal will be added in UE4 4.11 and is available as a preview release *right now*!

This has been a hugely intense effort since WWDC so I'm looking forward to the day UE4 4.11 finally ships (Soon! I hope!) which will make Metal the *default* graphics API for Mac running on OS X El Capitan or later. Turns out that implementing support for a new graphics API in UE4 is a non-trivial exercise and doing so while the API and driver support is also being rapidly improved is definitely... exciting and more than a little stressful.

View Postmacdude22, on 24 February 2016 - 09:33 AM, said:

Benchmarks are fine I still want a game to run against. You know, stuff like will metal make Ark go from a slideshow to playable on a Mac. That sort of thing. :teehee:

For those of you in Fortnite's closed alpha (https://www.fortnite.com) may I suggest the handy 'Use Metal' option in the Video settings & a quick restart of the game... you might like it. For everyone else - the final 4.11 release will be more interesting. Like any new piece of code Metal support in 4.11 won't be perfect but I believe that Metal is *generally* better than OpenGL and will definitely improve over time in ways that OpenGL simply could not.

#89 marksatt

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:24 PM

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 12 January 2016 - 04:22 AM, said:

I find it hard to imagine that Apple will support anything but Metal on OS X in the future myself. As Metal matures I'd expect the porting of PC games to Mac to be approximately similar to the situation now. Meantime, I'd also expect iOS games to become increasingly sophisticated over time as well.

<\snip>

This.

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 12 January 2016 - 04:22 AM, said:

I think what people wrestle with over and over is that Apple has no intention of trying to be all things to all people all of the time. They try to choose areas of focus and excel in those areas. This strategy certainly seems to be working for them.

And this. I do feel Apple want Mac gaming to succeed though...

#90 macdude22

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:30 PM

View Postmarksatt, on 26 February 2016 - 04:12 PM, said:

For those of you in Fortnite's closed alpha (https://www.fortnite.com) may I suggest the handy 'Use Metal' option in the Video settings & a quick restart of the game... you might like it. For everyone else - the final 4.11 release will be more interesting. Like any new piece of code Metal support in 4.11 won't be perfect but I believe that Metal is *generally* better than OpenGL and will definitely improve over time in ways that OpenGL simply could not.

Who's wheel do I have to grease to get into the Alpha :P
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#91 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:35 PM

Benchmarks needed now!

I have too old a GPU for that :(
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#92 marksatt

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:37 PM

View Postmacdude22, on 26 February 2016 - 04:30 PM, said:

Who's wheel do I have to grease to get into the Alpha :P

Not my bag I'm afraid - feel free to sign-up though...

#93 macdude22

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:38 PM

View Postmarksatt, on 26 February 2016 - 04:37 PM, said:

Not my bag I'm afraid - feel free to sign-up though...

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#94 marksatt

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 04:48 PM

View PostThain Esh Kelch, on 26 February 2016 - 04:35 PM, said:

Benchmarks needed now!

I have too old a GPU for that :(

I know, I know but I'd personally rather spend my time moving Mac UT (https://www.unrealtournament.com) over to Metal or adding new features etc. etc. Then you guys can do your own benchmarks and play an awesome Epic game at the same time ;)

#95 DirtyHarry50

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Posted 27 February 2016 - 01:08 AM

I have the Epic Launcher installed here but removed the OpenGL version of UT4 due to severe performance issues on this particular iMac which is a i5 3.4 GHz, * gigs ram, Nvidia 775M 2 gigs ram 27" display system. I tried turning all settings down to minimums including the resolution to get a stable playable frame rate but even then it was not a smooth experience as I recall and was mighty ugly besides. I am not very fussy about such things but it was bad. I do understand it is in development though and for all I know is loaded with debugging code enabled, has not been optimized, is not using Metal yet, etc. So I am hopeful that I will be able to enjoy it in the future. I'll give it a try again when Metal is implemented.

I've signed up for the Fortnight testing but haven't heard anything. I imagine it has an NDA so even if I was in I probably could not mention it anyway until that was lifted. I hope I get a crack at that too. I liked what I saw in the demo. It looks fun and I like the visual style of it.

I hope it turns out Apple's investment in Metal development does translate to good things for Mac gaming and it is more of a concern to them than I imagine it to be. That would be nice. It is nice to hear they have been involved in working with Epic on the Unreal Engine (well, in support of its development I mean) at least during the time of the demo and I imagine they must play some role as that continues too. Hope springs eternal!
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#96 marksatt

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Posted 27 February 2016 - 05:46 AM

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 27 February 2016 - 01:08 AM, said:

I have the Epic Launcher installed here but removed the OpenGL version of UT4 due to severe performance issues on this particular iMac which is a i5 3.4 GHz, * gigs ram, Nvidia 775M 2 gigs ram 27" display system. I tried turning all settings down to minimums including the resolution to get a stable playable frame rate but even then it was not a smooth experience as I recall and was mighty ugly besides. I am not very fussy about such things but it was bad. I do understand it is in development though and for all I know is loaded with debugging code enabled, has not been optimized, is not using Metal yet, etc. So I am hopeful that I will be able to enjoy it in the future. I'll give it a try again when Metal is implemented.

I've really not been permitted much time to support Mac UT as we've had so much else going on that has been considered higher priority, so Mac performance isn't ideal. Anyone running on an Nvidia GPU would probably benefit *substantially* from running Nvidia's WebDrivers, though that's at your own risk... The sooner I can get Mac UT on Metal the better really. It should be a bit smoother and it'll be easier and more likely to improve in the future.

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 27 February 2016 - 01:08 AM, said:

I hope it turns out Apple's investment in Metal development does translate to good things for Mac gaming and it is more of a concern to them than I imagine it to be.

Yes.

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 27 February 2016 - 01:08 AM, said:

It is nice to hear they have been involved in working with Epic on the Unreal Engine (well, in support of its development I mean) and I'm glad they are still playing a role as that continues too.

Ahem... moving on...

#97 DirtyHarry50

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 05:19 AM

View Postmarksatt, on 27 February 2016 - 05:46 AM, said:

Ahem... moving on...

And here I was feel all kinds of optimistic and stuff. Oh, well.

It's cool though from my perspective which is a planned future of console gaming (XBox One) and whatever fun I can have on an iPad and maybe even here and there on the Apple TV. I'm not necessarily ruling out desktop gaming here completely but it is not and probably will never be again the focus for me that it once was. Maybe I am not unique in feeling this way. I don't know but it is how I feel.

For a desktop I would probably be pretty happy with the 21" Retina iMac that as I understand it can run WoW pretty well. That's good enough for me when I have other affordable options for everything else I care about. If other stuff works well too, great. I'll take it. If not, oh well. That's what the other options are for. It may sound crazy to my friends here but I am starting to even wonder if down the road an iPad wouldn't be enough for me when I note that all the apps I use all the time are available there too. So why do I continue to spend so much money on an immobile desktop aside of it being what I am used to, what I have always used? I'm not sure I have a real good answer to that to be honest, particularly when AAA gaming is taken out of the equation by something like an XBox One.

An iPad Pro and an XBox One come to about one half the cost of a loaded 27" iMac now. So I am starting to wonder why I cling to the way I've always done things. Like many consumers, I am not doing anything here at home that demands the power of a desktop computer.
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#98 marksatt

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 10:47 AM

View PostDirtyHarry50, on 28 February 2016 - 05:19 AM, said:

And here I was feel all kinds of optimistic and stuff. Oh, well.

You should be. My post is a little obtuse in part out of 'badness'/mischief/humour on my part and in part because I'm not an official spokesman I don't wish to make direct, public statements about the relationship between Epic & Apple. Other than to say I'm a lot happier about it than I was back in the days of OpenGL.

#99 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 09:36 AM

View Postmarksatt, on 26 February 2016 - 04:12 PM, said:

Since myself and other fine folks from Epic, AMD, Apple & Nvidia slogged our collective guts out for weeks to get Mac Metal support in UE4 up & running well enough to power the live Mac Fortnite demo shown in the WWDC '15 Keynote I'd like to politely ask for this to be edited!

Post is updated. Thanks for the info!
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#100 ltcommander.data

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Posted 31 March 2016 - 10:27 AM

https://www.unrealen...e-4-11-released

So UE 4.11 is now out with Metal for Mac out of beta and the default renderer as promised.

Interestingly there's a note about a commandline to activate experimental SM5 features. I wonder what that adds? Additional features already available in Metal that don't fit the union of OpenGL 4.1 and Metal featureset (since right now the OGL4.1 and Metal renderers offer feature parity) or is this access to new features beyond what Metal officially supports such as tessellation?





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: OS X, Metal, API, OpenGL, Vulkan, DirectX, Performance