Mini 4 - framerate drops in games?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Tapper123, Sep 24, 2015.

  1. Tapper123 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2015
    #1
    Last week another poster here noticed frame rate drops in certain games. For example, he mentioned Crossy Road. I can confirm that there are occasional hiccups in that game on my Mini 4.

    However after a week, I have played a few more games, and have noticed more frame rate drops.

    For example, Sword of Xolan will sometimes become a little choppy (looks like it's dropping from 60fps to 30fps). Also noticed similar choppiness in ShadowBlade.

    I have tried various settings changes, including turning off most background refreshing of apps. The framerate drops still happen.

    Anyone else notice similar performance issues during games or other graphical apps? I think the Mini 4 hardware should be capable of running these games at a constant 60fps easily, and can't quite figure out why it's doing this.

    FWIW my Mini 4 is updated to iOS 9.1.
     
  2. rkuo macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    #2
    I'm puzzled by how the iPad Air 2 handles the multitasking screen so much better than the iPad mini 4. I think it may come down to memory bandwidth ... Which is twice in the iPad Air 2 as fast on top of the gpu speed improvements in the A8X.
     
  3. lagwagon Suspended

    lagwagon

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    Oct 12, 2014
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    #3
    Air 2 has an extra core (3) in the A8X vs two cores in the A8.
     
  4. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #4
    On my mini 4 with IOS9 340 build, Crossy road takes exactly 20-30 seconds to load to the hippo blue thing animation before you get in game.

    On my Air 1 and mini 2 using different IOS 8 versions, both load up Crossy roads in 11-12 seconds flat side by side. And yes on mini 4 stutters and frame drops more than iPads on IOS 8 in Crossy roads.

    Also I play "Commute" and in game on section 5 with rain and added graphic effects using the A8 in game, it's running at a way lower fps than compared to on mini 2 and Air 1 using the A7 although without added extra graphic effects. It's choppy on IOS 9 on mini 4.

    Now get this, I did test drive IOS9 build 340 on mini 2 for some days. All the same delayed app launching, then delayed loading times, then more choppiness in games with lower fps with a lot of "hitching" in games making the graphics and gameplay go from smooth to big hit in fps then smooth again off and on.

    Games affected on mini 2: 8 bit ninja, beach buggy blitz, commute, Crossy road, dead trigger 2, legends 2, trials frontier.

    So I did a DFU in iTunes on mini 2 back to 8.4.1 it originally had 8.1.2, restored most recent iCloud backup and everything cloned back to the way it was like on my Air 1 and on mini 2 everything is smooth, instant, no lag, no delayed launch apps, loading times instant or as fast as A7 can load apps, and my best usage time everwith screen on whole time was 13 hours and 15 minutes with 50 percent gaming, 25 percent safari, and 25 percent YouTube and misc app stuff (mini 2).

    With mini 4 on low brightness, 30 percent gaming, 50 percent safari, 20 percent of YouTube, music and other misc apps, I can only get 10 hours 37 minutes so far of battery out of mini 4. I think IOS 9 and all the new features to include multitasking and split window which is enabled by default to include video PiP mode, while the mini 4 idles or has any load there is extra pressure on cpu to work more and killing off battery.

    Also if Safari uses metal API like Apple claims the whole OS uses it now for everything, it's probably draining this thing dry.

    I really like the mini 4 over the mini 2 and think this is a great companion for my Air 1. If battery life does not get better and there are going to be issues with gaming and apps in general if they implement thinning or not, I would rather stick with the older models and IOS 8.x!!!

     
  5. rkuo macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 25, 2010
    #5
    Yes but that's largely irrelevant for the multitasking screen, which is just all GPU animations. It doesn't (or shouldn't) take much CPU to position and animate screenshots and icons. I realize the Air 2 has a lot more GPU as well, but I don't think that explains why the Mini 4 performs as badly on this feature as it does ... I just don't see it being a very complicated operation.
     
  6. Tapper123 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #6
    Interesting. I hate to admit this, because I was really excited about the Mini 4, but the performance is disappointing in some ways. Debating on keeping it now, especially since I own an Air 2 as well. Sure, the Air is less portable, but I also don't need reading glasses for it like I often do on the Mini. Hmm.
     
  7. pacorob macrumors 68000

    pacorob

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2010
    Location:
    the Netherlands
    #7
    Let's hope that the speed will improve again when iOS9.1 is launched for the public.
    I also noticed more delay on my iPad mini2 and iPhone 5s since iOS9.0.

    9.0.1 or a Beta of 9.1?
     
  8. Capt T macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 20, 2010
    #8
    Are all of the games the OP is testing/playing optimized for iOS9? Someone else mentioned the run fine on older machines in iOS8.
     
  9. Mackinjosh macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 21, 2014
    #9
    Hate to burst your bubble, but I'm the person that reported the Crossy Road issue (among other UI related lagginess). I'm on Beta 9.1 and the problems still exist. It's really disappointing, because otherwise the Mini 4 is visually(colors) a huge upgrade over the Mini 2 that I also own. It just stinks to see that all the same performance issues my Mini 2 has, my Mini 4 also has. And it cost nearly twice the price of my Mini 2 (got it from Target for 225). I'm leaning towards returning the 4.
     
  10. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #10
    This has nothing to do with the Mini 4. The Mini 4 runs circles around the Mini 2. This is something software related. If you want to go back to a Mini 2, be my guest, but I think that would be a big mistake.
     
  11. DSTOFEL macrumors 6502

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    Feb 11, 2011
    #11
    This is the one thing that stood out to me also. Scrolling through the multitasking screen on the Mink 4 is very jittery/choppy vs. the buttery smoothness with the same function on the Air 2. I could understand if after a couple of IOS updates, I began to experience jittery/choppy animations with the Mini 4. However, I wouldn't expect to see this right out of the gate!

    I also grabbed one of the Air 2 deals at Staples (i.e. $150 off), and I'm wobbling a bit on my decision to go with the Mini 4. I'm really liking the Air 2.
     
  12. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2015
    #12
    I agree with you wholeheartedly! The mini 4 hardware is more than capable like the iPhone 6 and added 2GB ram. But poor performance in games, other apps and in IOS 9 is just unacceptable for a nice new device. Battery life is the other problem/issue. I have a thread started for that but no one with a mini 4 will respond or post screenshots of usage time like I did. With barely much game, YouTube or music, and a whole bunch of Safari I got 10 hours 37 minutes with auto brightness on always changing brightness up and down on constant basis instantenously.

    Apps delay before they load probably due to new Game Center version, they load twice as slow compared to IOS 8 and their are frame drops and hitching. I do believe it's because the app is not optimized to how IOS 9 under the hood changes work and app has to be updated to be compatible and work with new code. Although many app developers have not done that yet. Also with the app thinning issue that's causing problems for Apple, developers and us users.

    I got my mini 4 and as much as l like the new overall improvements in the screen, cpu speed, memory and Safari browsing to include attempts at multitasking, the battery life and IOS 9 glitches and bugs are just not making it that fun of a device to be on.

    That's why I am back on my Air 1 typing this response and typing is so much faster and accurate compared to the newer IOS 9 laggy keyboard and smaller screen on mini 4.

    I love my Air 1 because I can get 15 hours battery life, smoother performance in games, and there are no glitches, bugs, lag, crashes, freezes,lock ups, hitching and fps drops in apps because I am using IOS 8.2 and all apps out there are optimized to load instant and work smooth on this device with A7 cpu and 1 gig of ram...

    Maybe Apple should of released new devices with better hardware either with IOS 8.4.1 installed or waited until they got IOS 9 working as good as IOS 8 and gave developers plenty of time to update their apps for compatibility, performance, enhancements and smooth sailing with a new IOS with so many changes to how it works compared to older versions.

    Love the mini 4 over the mini 2 but I might have to return it back to best buy unfortunately.

    I did do a battery calibration process on mini 4 and did the hold home button and power button down until it reboots to Apple logo to clear cache and junk files after a full charge from one percent shut off and also when it got to 100 percent left it on for another half an hour or more.

    Also Disabled the crazy auto brightness and left brightness on 20-30 percent whole time and now got 11 hours and 37 minutes of battery life before shutdown...

    Still cannot game much on it because with faster cpu and more power hungry ram and screen battery depletes quickly gaming. That's with games though optimized for IOS 8 and not IOS 9.

    So it's either wait for Apple and developers to improve IOS 9 and apps, or maybe mini 4 is a defective one and return it...

     
  13. Mackinjosh macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 21, 2014
    #13
    You'd think Apple would have seen that before releasing the OS. The OS itself lags in a way that's unacceptable. I have a new iPod Touch and it outperforms the Mini 4 in every way.
     
  14. Tapper123 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #14
    My battery life on Mini 4 seems pretty good. But the lag and framerate drops are unacceptable when I've spent this much money on a small tablet. Part of the reason I prefer iOS over Android is because Android often has random lags and hiccups. This is the first iOS device I've owned that behaves this way.

    BTW, iOS 9.1 was officially released. I updated it yesterday, and it doesn't improve anything. I know from experience that it's not wise to take a gamble that performance issues on any device will get fixed.

    At this point, sadly I think I'll be returning my Mini 4 on Monday.
     
  15. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #15
    The iPod touch 6th gen has 8.4 IOS out of the box but has some major issues of its own to include 3-4 hours of screen on time without gaming and just web browsing with brightness very low dim mode. Also it hard freezes, crashes and locks up to a state that seems turned off and would not come back on with buttons or charging cable. Then hour later it magically decided to work again. They need to recall those, bought it for one of my kids and it was worthless. A 30-40 dollar prepaid 4g moto e runs circles around a 229 iPod touch 6th gen. Just go to the touch forums here and read all about it. Also everyone hates how the home button only works if you hit it dead center. Apple claimed 8 hours video playback which is more like four, and 40 hours screen off music playback which is more like 8-12 hours if your lucky. This is the word from other users complaining about it.

    Anyhow... Mini 4 hardware good, battery life 2 or more hours less than mini 2, IOS 9 problems galore just like all the rest of Apple devices with different hardware. Common factor is IOS 9...

    Apple fix it!!!
     
  16. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #16

    IOS 9.0.1 was released. IOS 9.1 is still in beta. App developers still behind in catching up with fixing their apps to work correctly with IOS 9 and under the hood changes which seem like many...
     
  17. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #17

    So what is your total usage time with actually using tablet with screen on from 100 percent to 1. Do you got the crazy instantaneous brightness going up and down when environmental ambient light changes in area your using tablet???
     
  18. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    Sunny Florida
    #18
    It's a bug. It happens. It'll get fixed.
     
  19. newellj macrumors 601

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    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #19
    Without getting into the merits of this discussion, I assume that Mackinjosh is comparing/thinking of a Mini 2/Mini 3 running 8.x vs. the Mini 4 running 9.x.

    I haven't seen big differences between 8.4.1, 9.0 and the 9.1PB, but you guys are talking about things like game apps that I just don't run and that could make a world of difference, I suppose.
     
  20. Mackinjosh macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    A bug in what? The iPad itself? Because I own an iPad Mini 2 running the same exact OS and it doesn't exhibit these problems.
     
  21. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #21
    Its the same OS but not the same hardware. Presumably they operate differently. The OS accounts for that. Or not. In any case, whoever thinks the Mini 2 performs better than the Mini 4 is just plain wrong. But do what you will. Its your money.
     
  22. Tapper123, Sep 25, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2015

    Tapper123 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #22
    There is definitely something about iOS9 that is causing the Mini 4 to operate at a fraction of where it should be with many apps.

    I just compared playing Sword of Xolan (a 2D sidescroller - nothing complex) on my iPod Touch 5, and it's smooth as butter. On the Mini 4 it has constant frame drops, and generally runs maybe 30fps.

    You will find similar performance issues in a variety of apps on the Mini 4.

    The only difference is my iPod Touch 5 is running iOS 7. The Mini 4 should easily beat this old iPod Touch, but iOS 9 seems to be a terrible OS for this device. The Air 2 does well on iOS 9.

    ZBoater, that's what I would've thought before doing actual comparisons between devices. Something is very wrong with the Mini 4's performance. I didn't want to believe it either, until I started to try more apps and started noticing lots of framerate drops and stuttering.

    Will it be fixed? I don't know. I watched my wife struggle with a known iPhone 4S issue for ages which Apple never admitted to, and only got fixed maybe 2 years later. Apple doesn't seem to care about the Mini much, so I'm nervous about them basically ignoring this performance issue.
     
  23. Skyhawk21 macrumors regular

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    Sep 16, 2015
    #23
    I am having the same problems! Mini 4 & IOS 9 build 340 is stuttering like crap playing "Does Not Commute" like 15-30fps no joke on latest version of game. Mini 2 on 8.4.1 using same version of "Does Not Commute" loads quicker, no delay when you touch icon, goes right into game with no hiccups or lag, same level same everything and you get 30-60 fps smooth as butter on an A7 with 1 gig of ram, down clocked and older gpu in IOS 8.4.1.

    Other games, delays when you touch click app, then when loading, then in game smooth performance, lag, hitching, smooth again and so on. Like the OS is constantly doing something in background (I beleive it to be the new multitasking and split window feature always enabled by default of any app you load in IOS9) so during game you can slide the arrow on right side of screen and split screen main app like game and secondary app and only use one or the other, AND OR the ones that support it drag it to center of screen and use both at same time and multitask! and YES you can use new PiP video player while playing a game, it works I did it and game lagged by 10 percent less fps but I watched YouTube clip from embedded into website and played beach buggy!

    The hardware is more than capable in the Mini 4, its the implementation of the new functionality Apple wanted IOS9 to do (multitasking, split screen, PIP) that other competitors have been doing for years now. Although Apple did not take the time nor energy to think it through and get it working before their "MAGIC" month and day every year new gadgets and SOFTWARE is released to show off to the world which the other competitors most likely already accomplished.

    STILL APPLE IS THE ONLY one that in the A7 devices included a battery that can make it last all day long with minimal use or half a day with heavy use such as my Ipad Air 1 and mini 2. OF course all recent or new apps on app-store was designed or coded while IOS 8 and updates were in existence. APPLE was late into letting developers get apps going on the app store until after IOS9 GM was released.

    Anyhow I am new and an Apple amateur but since the last two months I have learned, read, and researched a lot in the IT world of Apple. Thats why its the choice anyone should choose for a tablet (without IOS9 of course) :p

    As phones go, although Apple is copying somethings from android, and Samsung is cloning form factor of apple, I choose android still due to newer technology and wider open support for software/hardware.

    I LOVE the mini 4 though as a toy, just want the battery to last longer than 10 hours. Of course I want butter smooth performance like that of anything on the mini 2 with IOS 8.4.1. If they had that on the mini 4, everyone would be picking them up like candy once they saw how well it ran compared to anything else.

    Oh well; live and learn!

    I either got to sell my mini 2 then just deal with the mini 4 until IOS 9 matures and apps, or return it, keep mini 2 for awhile, use the hell out of my air 1 with 15 hours of battery life gaming, and just probably settle on it being what I need and selling my good mini 2.

    Choices and choices...

     
  24. Capt T macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2010
    #24
    I don't notice any lag or frame rate drops....not saying it isn't an issue happening for some. But the stuff that had lag on my air one, is zippy on my mini 4. I open some large files on here for work, both large PDFs and autocad in the 360 app. Lots of file types in goodreader. But I am not playing any high graphics intensive games.
     
  25. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    Sunny Florida
    #25
    I'm playing XCom and Infinity Blade on my Mini 4. I can't see any of this behavior. They are flawless.
     

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