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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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161348-snow_leopard_box_2.jpg


One week ago, we reported that Apple had seeded to developers a "Snow Leopard Graphics Update". While it was unclear exactly what the update is designed to address, a number of users have been complaining of graphics-related issues, particularly with high-performance games.

We have received word that Apple has seeded a new build of Snow Leopard Graphics Update to developers today, and while those familiar with the builds note that Apple has not documented any additional specific focus areas for testing, the one known issue in the previous build, which involved crashing of 3D applications on Mac Pros with the Nvidia Quadro FX 5600 graphics card, is no longer listed in the documentation as being present.

A public release date for the update remains unknown.

Article Link: Apple Pushes Out New 'Snow Leopard Graphics Update' Build to Developers
 

wizard

macrumors 68040
May 29, 2003
3,854
571
Hoping this update aggressively improves early 2008 MBP performance.

That is my current machine of course. The problem is I don't want to buy a new machine right now but yet would like all the issues resolved with respect to GPU performance and would love to see acceleration of video play back on the GPU.

Maybe that is to much to ask for. Snow Leopard fixed a lot of things on the MBP for me but GPU performance and Quicktime still leave a lot to be desired.


Dave
 

Xavier

Contributor
Mar 23, 2006
2,686
1,294
Columbus
Maybe that is to much to ask for. Snow Leopard fixed a lot of things on the MBP for me but GPU performance and Quicktime still leave a lot to be desired.

We will find out soon I guess. The performance drop between 10.6.3 and 10.6.4 was outrageously big. This should have been "pushed out" earlier.
 

Bernd

macrumors member
Sep 4, 2003
54
0
I'm just glad Apple is working on this. It did not effect me until I replaced my 2006 Mac mini with a 2010 Mac mini. Big update from intel crap graphics to nvidia. now a 2nd boost would be nice with better drivers.
 

spillproof

macrumors 68020
Jun 4, 2009
2,028
2
USA
How is Steam working? I'm still with 10.6.2 so I can play my Steam games properly but I want at least 10.6.3 for the new Flash hardware acceleration. :(
 

Xavier

Contributor
Mar 23, 2006
2,686
1,294
Columbus
How is Steam working? I'm still with 10.6.2 so I can play my Steam games properly but I want at least 10.6.3 for the new Flash hardware acceleration. :(

10.6.3 was unaffected by the graphics driver problem. 10.6.4 is.

I had to downgrade from 10.6.4, which was a pain. But, something tells me 10.6.5 will be out soon, so you might as well just wait to hear the official report.
 

DARKJ3DI

macrumors regular
Jul 6, 2008
217
0
Dunedin, New Zealand
on my 2010 macbook pro with 10.6.4 I have no issue with games through steam. they run exactly the same as on 10.6.3. but a graphics update is always welcome...
 

darkplanets

macrumors 6502a
Nov 6, 2009
853
1
Here's part of it :

THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS MESSAGE IS UNDER NON- DISCLOSURE

I'm quite aware of that :p

However, that hasn't stopped people from violating their NDA's in the past, especially in relation to OS updates, so one can be hopeful.

What I'm curious about is the fact that this is getting re-seeded; assuming it's based off of the graphics drivers included in the latest custom build macs, this shouldn't really be hard to release, unless they did a rewrite since then, and that's what really interests me the most, especially since you can already get those kexts.
 

Riemann Zeta

macrumors 6502a
Feb 12, 2008
661
0
Really, who genuinely gives a **** about an NDA for a small graphic driver update? This isn't exactly a top secret, high-interest project--if anything, it is lower on the totem pole than a 10.6.x update.

Edit: why do we need the damn Ned-Flanderizing censor algorithm?
 

macintoshtoffy

macrumors 6502a
Jul 1, 2009
921
0
New Zealand
I'm quite aware of that :p

However, that hasn't stopped people from violating their NDA's in the past, especially in relation to OS updates, so one can be hopeful.

What I'm curious about is the fact that this is getting re-seeded; assuming it's based off of the graphics drivers included in the latest custom build macs, this shouldn't really be hard to release, unless they did a rewrite since then, and that's what really interests me the most, especially since you can already get those kexts.

That isn't correct - what you see in the custom builds was merely a stop gap measure to get the hardware out the door; what we see in the new seeds are major driver restructuring and optimisation; add to that it also includes OpenGL improvements by Apple - it is a massive update that will hopefully lead not only to better performance now but future hardware released the improved drivers will allow for the GPU to be utilised to its full capacity. I am wondering though to one degree Mac OS X 10.6.4 introduced some structural changes at the kernel level that requires the video drivers to be updated - that part of the problem when it comes to performance resides in the kernel but the changes also require changes to take place in the video drivers itself.

As for the release date I'd say at the earliest we'll probably it see it appear at the end of August, maybe mid September - at the end of the day it is a massive overhaul and the last thing you want happen is these drivers to ship and a whole heap of applications break and/or software vendors aren't given enough time to provide software updates to their customers for compatibility with the driver updates.
 

bolen

macrumors 6502
Jul 22, 2008
351
0
Sweden
That isn't correct - what you see in the custom builds was merely a stop gap measure to get the hardware out the door; what we see in the new seeds are major driver restructuring and optimisation; add to that it also includes OpenGL improvements by Apple - it is a massive update that will hopefully lead not only to better performance now but future hardware released the improved drivers will allow for the GPU to be utilised to its full capacity. I am wondering though to one degree Mac OS X 10.6.4 introduced some structural changes at the kernel level that requires the video drivers to be updated - that part of the problem when it comes to performance resides in the kernel but the changes also require changes to take place in the video drivers itself.

As for the release date I'd say at the earliest we'll probably it see it appear at the end of August, maybe mid September - at the end of the day it is a massive overhaul and the last thing you want happen is these drivers to ship and a whole heap of applications break and/or software vendors aren't given enough time to provide software updates to their customers for compatibility with the driver updates.

Are you guessing or do you know for a fact that:
what we see in the new seeds are major driver restructuring and optimisation; add to that it also includes OpenGL improvements by Apple - it is a massive update that will hopefully lead not only to better performance now but future hardware released the improved drivers will allow for the GPU to be utilised to its full capacity.

If this is true it's freaking GREAT. I believe the biggest problem is the OpenGL-implementation and its' surroundings, driver comes after that.
 

Draeconis

macrumors 6502a
May 6, 2008
979
269
Are you guessing or do you know for a fact that:
what we see in the new seeds are major driver restructuring and optimisation; add to that it also includes OpenGL improvements by Apple - it is a massive update that will hopefully lead not only to better performance now but future hardware released the improved drivers will allow for the GPU to be utilised to its full capacity.

If this is true it's freaking GREAT. I believe the biggest problem is the OpenGL-implementation and its' surroundings, driver comes after that.

As I understand it, the implentation of OpenGL in OS X is out of date rather significantly. Hopefully this update tackles this and/or driver updates.
 

Riemann Zeta

macrumors 6502a
Feb 12, 2008
661
0
As I understand it, the implentation of OpenGL in OS X is out of date rather significantly. Hopefully this update tackles this and/or driver updates.
Apple's OpenGL implementation is certainly bizarre: it is best described as "OpenGL 2.1 & More." That is, for Mac OS 10.6, it is a complete implementation of OpenGL 2.1 with most of the features of the 3.0 API included. The only thing that is missing is a recent version of the GL Shading Language. If Apple would introduce version 1.3 of GLSL, they would have a complete OpenGL 3.0 framework.

But having feature-complete OpenGL 3.0 support doesn't have anything to do with rendering speed, which is generally considered dog-ass slow for gaming purposes. That's more of a driver issue.
 

bolen

macrumors 6502
Jul 22, 2008
351
0
Sweden
Apple's OpenGL implementation is certainly bizarre: it is best described as "OpenGL 2.1 & More." That is, for Mac OS 10.6, it is a complete implementation of OpenGL 2.1 with most of the features of the 3.0 API included. The only thing that is missing is a recent version of the GL Shading Language. If Apple would introduce version 1.3 of GLSL, they would have a complete OpenGL 3.0 framework.

But having feature-complete OpenGL 3.0 support doesn't have anything to do with rendering speed, which is generally considered dog-ass slow for gaming purposes. That's more of a driver issue.

Thanks for the clarification. So the speed is only drivers you mean (and bad cider ports)?
 

spillproof

macrumors 68020
Jun 4, 2009
2,028
2
USA
10.6.3 was unaffected by the graphics driver problem. 10.6.4 is.

I had to downgrade from 10.6.4, which was a pain. But, something tells me 10.6.5 will be out soon, so you might as well just wait to hear the official report.

Thank you, sir for that great information.
 

Žalgiris

macrumors 6502a
Aug 3, 2010
934
0
Lithuania
I hope Apple add full support for OpenGL 4, because now it doesn't look good. No full OpenGL 3 in 2010? I hope 10.7 brings some hardcore changes.
 

Ovah

macrumors newbie
Aug 13, 2010
3
0
I pray to god that this Graphics update contains better drivers for games like StarCraft II which is unplayable on even the best Mac specs.
 

Plasmastrike

macrumors newbie
Nov 20, 2009
28
0
I pray to god that this Graphics update contains better drivers for games like StarCraft II which is unplayable on even the best Mac specs.

This sums my opinion up perfectly. (Core i7 w/ 330M here and can only play on Low/Low settings)

EDIT: Unless I jack down the resolution to that of an iBook.
 

Peaceful

macrumors member
Jan 27, 2005
65
12
I pray to god that this Graphics update contains better drivers for games like StarCraft II which is unplayable on even the best Mac specs.

In general, turn shaders, lighting, and shadows to low for SCII.

In detail, someone compiled an excellent per-system guide to SCII tuning for specific macs: http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/224842575

It won't look as good, of course, but following the guide should get you ~50-60fps on any relatively modern mac hardware.
 

Gata

macrumors regular
Mar 23, 2010
248
149
I pray to god that this Graphics update contains better drivers for games like StarCraft II which is unplayable on even the best Mac specs.

This sums my opinion up perfectly. (Core i7 w/ 330M here and can only play on Low/Low settings)

EDIT: Unless I jack down the resolution to that of an iBook.

In general, turn shaders, lighting, and shadows to low for SCII.

In detail, someone compiled an excellent per-system guide to SCII tuning for specific macs: http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/224842575

It won't look as good, of course, but following the guide should get you ~50-60fps on any relatively modern mac hardware.

There was a topic in the Macbook Pro Forum where a member with a 13" w/ 320m was able to get 50-60 fps out of SCII while having it look fairly good.

His fix also works for the MBPs with the 330m.

Link:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/967793/

Worked like a charm.
 
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