Apple update for Games-Snow Leopard Graphics Update

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by IChing, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. IChing macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    #1
    I just click on software update and got this.

    The
    contains stability and performance fixes for graphics applications and games, including fixes that:
    address frame rate issues occurring in Portal and Team Fortress 2 on certain Macs
    resolve an issue that could cause Aperture 3 or StarCraft II to unexpectedly quit or become unresponsive
    For more information about this update, please visit this website: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4286


    probably be on the front page soon
    just looked and it wasn't there
    downloading now.
     
  2. Corndog5595 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #2
    [​IMG]


    Before and after, xBench scores didn’t change at all, but that’s not a good representation.
     
  3. IChing thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    #3
    just tried portal and see improvements

    On my 2.4 imac, its good to see apple working with valve on improving our gaming experience so soon.

    I was playing earlier and got an update from valve but didn't really pay attention to their update.
     
  4. Libertine Lush macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    #4
    I'll share my findings for a 2010 MBP 15" HiRes i7 with the Nvidia 330M (512MB).

    I have the Orange Box, so I tried out Team Fortress 2, one of the 2 games with frame rate issues addressed in the update. I always have "cl_fps 2" on, which shows a real time average of the frame rate. In 10.6.4, the fps was usually around 29, with all settings maxed (except no AA and vertical sync disable) at native res. Certain maps and particularly dense action would drop it a bit more.

    Now, I usually see a close to 15 fps increase. So it's a solid improvement. In some brief testing, it seems I can even do 2xAA now and achieve fps usually in the 30s. So I may leave it on.

    However, I don't remember what the fps was in 10.6.3, so I wonder if this graphics update merely brought it back to pre-10.6.4 performance or if it's better than 10.6.3 performance. Anyone recall the fps from all 3 periods to comment?

    There's also some other really welcome improvements. The intro sequence of screens in every new map use to load really sluggishly and choppily. Completely smooth now. And, scrolling the "Simplified" server list with the touchpad is no longer as skippy/jumpy.

    Besides Valve games, I was hoping, surely like most, that there would be some general OpenGL improvements, so other games would see performance bumps. I tested WOW and Call of Duty 4. Comparing the fps by standing at the same exact locations pre- and post-SL graphics update. No difference. Hopefully, one day, I can max out settings in WOW, a 6 year old game, on a nearly $2.5k system, from 2010.

    Finally, if rbarris happens to read this, would you be able to speak to how much more we should be able to expect in graphics optimization for Valve games on Macs in the future? Being just the average fool in a forum, I have no sense where this present performance is in relation to its peak potential: is it 50% where it could be once fully optimized or 90%?
     
  5. jbyun04 macrumors 6502a

    jbyun04

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #5
    CS:S on recommended settings with this update runs smoothly at 70fps. I haven't turned off motion blur but I imagine it would be better with it off. :D:D
     
  6. Libertine Lush macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    #6
    Just tested 4xAA in TF2. I don't a see terribly apparent difference in frame rate versus 2xAA. Like with 2xAA it does drop to low to mid-20s sometimes. So if anyone with the same system as mine wants to do AA, it seems you might as well do 4x instead of 2x.

    Here's an extremely technical post about the graphics update, direct from Valve: http://store.steampowered.com/news/4211/

    An excerpt: "Of course, in a high performance application like a game, the CPU time spent in Apple's driver validating floating point data can really add up. We have been able to measure performance improvements in this area with the latest software update, but we are anticipating even more speedups in this area if Apple implements the uniform_buffer_object extension and GLSL 1.3 in a future update. With these additional features, we will be able to sidestep this particular CPU bottleneck, allowing us to win back a bunch of CPU time and, ultimately, performance."
     
  7. MikieMcBikie macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    Location:
    TN
    #7
    2010 mini with 5 GIG RAM running SC2. It seems to be running smoother, i set it back to the default settings(medium) and have been playing for over two hours without lag. FPS still isn't extreme, but much more playable than before the patch.
     
  8. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #8
    I'm seeing mixed results with this patch with Starcraft 2.

    MacBook Pro 5,4
    2.53 GHz Core2Duo
    4 GB RAM
    Nvidia GeForce 9400M / 256 MB
    1440x900 resolution

    Pretty much no detectable difference. Still runs sluggishly (5-20 fps) with all settings on low, still gets extremely hot while playing, missions still take forever to load (I can literally make a sandwich while it's loading on some of them).

    iMac 8,1
    3.06 GHz Core2Duo
    4 GB RAM
    Nvidia GeForce 8800GS / 512 MB
    1920x1200 resolution

    Here the patch really made a huge difference. Previously it ran poorly with all settings on low and turning the shaders up from low triggered the shader bug, making it unplayable. That seems to be fixed in the update. Also the mission loading seems faster, but I might be imagining that. Now I'm getting 80-90 fps on low settings, and if I turn settings up to what I would call "medium" (ish), I can still get a decent 20-30 fps. And the game looks great at these settings, a huge improvement in visual quality from the low settings. There's detail I didn't even know was there. That's still a little disappointing for a top of the line iMac from just two years ago, but it's acceptable and at least lets me enjoy the game.
     
  9. TDHXXX macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2009
    #9
    I just installed the patch and now I can't run anything on Steam, Portal has gone to 0% and Half-Life 2 just returns a 'your files have been successfully validated' message every time I try to run.

    Portal showed up as suspended on the downloads page now as well. Great...
     
  10. aki macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2004
    Location:
    Japan
    #10
    I suspected the update would improve SC2 performance on nvidia-equipped iMacs. Anyone have any reports on 10.6.3 SC2 v. 10.6.4+graphics update on ATI iMacs?
     
  11. Sambo110 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Australia
    #11
    On my iMac with an Ati Radeon 2400 HD I get around 10 FPS more in Portal and Counter Strike: Source. A good improvement in my opinion.
     
  12. andrew8404 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2009
    Location:
    Loma Linda, Ca
    #12
    Don't have any numbers but Starcraft 2 seems to be a little smoother after a few games on my 2010 13' Pro on mostly med settings.
     
  13. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
  14. TRUCRACKER macrumors 6502

    TRUCRACKER

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Location:
    VA
  15. Crimsonscyes macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2006
    #15
    I own an Nvidia Geforce 9400 iMac and I don't see any speed increase at all in Starcraft 2. It still runs at about 20fps, less than 10fps if there are big effects happening onscreen, and turning shaders to medium still makes it incredibly slow.

    I know a speed increase for Starcraft 2 wasn't listed in the update and I haven't come across any crashes yet so I suppose the update does what it said it would, but after weeks of waiting I'm still disappointed that they still haven't fixed all the major problems so I'm hoping this isn't the only graphics update apple plans on releasing. :confused:
     
  16. Corndog5595 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #16
    Huge improvements for Portal and CS:S.

    On recommended settings and with native resolution, I used to get 20-30 FPS. It was not enjoyable to me, so I lowered the resolution.
    I now get 55-70 FPS on native resolution with recommended settings.
     
  17. I'mAMac macrumors 6502a

    I'mAMac

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2006
    Location:
    In a Mac box
    #17
    Weird because I notice a HUGE improvement in SC2. in 10.6.4 pre-update, I would have to have all settings on medium and low with shaders on low to get 30+fps sometimes. Now, I have all settings on Medium and high with shaders on medium and im getting 40+fps with the obvious dip with a lot of onscreen action.

    With shaders on high it does slow down quite a bit probably down to the 20's without much action. So not quite windows performance yet but a giant leap for :apple: in the graphics department.
     
  18. TRUCRACKER macrumors 6502

    TRUCRACKER

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Location:
    VA
    #18
    Actually TF2 is only getting 15-25 FPS when there's actually things happening.
     
  19. SunnyP macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2010
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #19
    A quick reply for those wondering..

    Prior to the graphics update, I had to play SC2 on medium settings and the high settings were a little choppy. After the update, high settings worked perfectly fine. I don't have any benchmarks or anything but this is just what I found out through experience. I have an i7 MacBook Pro.
     
  20. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #20
    Do you have one of the models with the dual GPU? Maybe you're using the better one instead of the 9400M? Mine has only the 9400M and I also see no difference after the update and cannot use anything but the very lowest settings.
     
  21. aki macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2004
    Location:
    Japan
    #21
    Yeah it would be handy if people noted their GPU when giving their performance/lack of performance reports. I do gather that 10.6.4 in particular impacted nvidia and ati cards differently.
     
  22. Corndog5595 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #22
    Single GPU: 9400M w/ 256 MB
    Performance Increase 60-80%
     
  23. Sambo110 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Australia
    #23
    Played my first game of CS:S since installing the update. Now, it could just be a coincidence, but I am playing better than ever. Loving these new drivers.
     
  24. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #24
    That's weird. You're the first person I've seen with a 9400M who says they got increased performance, at least with a confirmed 9400M only (not the dual GPU model).
     
  25. Corndog5595 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #25
    I only tested it with Portal and CS:S as those are the only games I have, but the framerate nearly doubled on the same settings. Other people are using HL2 and SC2 to judge their improvements. Maybe SC2 isn’t affected very much.
     

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