Wow performance OS X vs Win7

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by Dr. McKay, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. Dr. McKay macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I just installed Win7 x64 via bootcamp on my imac. Will be installing Wow tonight.

    Has anyone been able to make a comparison, performance wise, between Wow on OS X Snow Leopard and Windows 7 ?
    Higher framerates and settings are to be expected on Win7 but just how much higher are we talking about ?
     
  2. Venkman90 macrumors regular

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    Aug 3, 2009
    #2
    I did the same, my findings:

    WoW ran a little smoother under Win7, the framerates were a little higher in general.

    However I got better ping under OSX, that was probably my own router setup and I can't explain why, not that it made a difference in terms of playability, it went from 30ms to like 150ms max.

    I like to have all my games in on OS though, so Win7 is much better for that, also if some weird driver issue comes along and breaks a game under OSX it can be a looooong wait for a fix (ala TF2).
     
  3. antonis macrumors 68000

    antonis

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    #3
    Still, WoW mac client is better. For instance it has built-in video capture in any supported resolution, while windows client doesn't even offer any video capture built-in option.
     
  4. Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Video capture is nice, but not a must-have.

    I run Wow on fair to low settings all round, with only view distance on good. All fancy features like sunshafts are turned off.

    I get around 65 to 70 fps in forests, open spaces, etc. ; in towns with a lot happening my fps hover around 30.
    Will playing wow in win7 enable me to turn up the detail AND have better framerates at the same time. Maybe I could up the detail to 'good' allround, or is it just wishful thinking ?
     
  5. DustinT macrumors 68000

    DustinT

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    #5
    You probably could up the settings just a little bit.
     
  6. RichardBeer macrumors regular

    RichardBeer

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    #6
    I get equal performance under both, which is a great testament to Blizzards ability, given the inadequate graphical ability of OS X.
     
  7. Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    I've discovered that you can download Mac bootcamp drivers from AMD's site as well. However, when you try to, it asks for a login and password.

    Are those drivers more recent than the ones in apple's bootcamp 3.3 update and if so, how to get them ?
    In essence, are these drivers potentially better than the 'normal' catalyst PC-drivers for your card ?
     
  8. Hastings101 macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #8
    WoW runs substantially better (10-15 fps higher on high settings) on Windows 7 for me than it does on OS X, but I miss all the Mac features built into it so I usually just play it while using OS X.
     
  9. Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Other than the video capture thingy (which I have absolutely no use for), what more does the OS X client offer ?
     
  10. Hastings101 macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #10
    Nothing else really, iTunes control and displays information from iTunes on your WoW screen. I just find both of those to be really useful for me.
     
  11. CylonGlitch macrumors 68030

    CylonGlitch

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    #11
    Just an FYI.

    In Windows there is a difference between Full Screen, and a Full Screen Window. It is the way the OS handles windowing and what is drawn. IE, in gaming mode Full Screen the game takes over the entire rendering of the display, windows doesn't do any updates until this exits. In Full Screen Windowed mode, the background windows are still updated and can be dragged off to second displays and such. Windows takes a performance hit when in Full Screen Windowed mode (WoW has a checkbox to enable this mode).

    OSX does not have an equivalent Full Screen mode, just the Full Screen Windowed mode; thus to truly do apples to apples comparison, you should do the windows version in Full Screen Windowed mode. You'll find it to be almost the same as the OSX side.

    Nothing wrong with Windows Full Screen mode, it's great that it can give more power to the app; just not really the same as in OSX and typically the reason for the difference in frame rates.
     
  12. Miharu macrumors 6502

    Miharu

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    #12
    Hmm? OS X does have all those 3 modes, many games run in true full screen, and I don't mean windowed full screen. For example, WoW in OS X offers all these three options. In true full screen, you can assign buttons for WoW commands that would otherwise, for example, activate exposé if it was windowed full screen. Also, frame rate is much better in full screen mode, just like in Windows.
     
  13. Venkman90 macrumors regular

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    #13
    Correct, I ran WoW full screen on OSX and it was true full screen.
     
  14. Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    I found this on Wikipedia :
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radeon

    So, what does this mean. Since AMD took over, they no longer provide drivers, not even for OS X. But I suppose Apple includes them in their automatic updates ? Also, I've noticed that on AMD's site, you can actually download Mac drivers, only you have to have a login and password (I tried), as opposed to windows drivers, which can be downloaded freely.

    What I can also see on wikpedia, is that my card is Directx10 compatible. But in Wow (in Win7 bootcamp) I see that I can choose between Directx 9 of 11 (I think, not sure, saw it last night while I was still downloading but wanted to try the game out - hurrah, all recommended settings are good, even sunshafts enabled !!).
    Anyone ?
     
  15. Venkman90 macrumors regular

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    #15
    I don't know specifics relating ot your post, but I do know that drivers and OSX do not often play well together.

    Apple are in no great hurry to fix driver issues and OpenGL is underused on OSX, gaming still isn't their priority.

    There are still performance gulfs on say TF2 on all but the best Mac hardware that are totally driver related (it runs like buttered lube on Win 7, same macbook) that may never get fixed.

    WoW is pretty solid, Blizzard take care with their mac ports, but if you find Apple break some drivers that do affect it you could be in the cold for months.

    If you wanted some advise, play it on Bootcamp.
     
  16. Dr. McKay, Sep 22, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2011

    Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    That's the whole idea.
    Mac gaming support has improved a lot over the past few years, but the number of available games is still ridiculous when compared to Windows. I mean, just look at Steam : bringing Steam to the Mac was a good idea, but just look at the percentage of games that's available for the Mac...

    And then there's the fact that MI2:SE was never released for the Mac, I don't believe I'll ever get over that :D

    And since all my games are playable in both Windows and OS X (all blizzard and Steam), there's no reason for me to stay with OS X for gaming...
     
  17. CylonGlitch macrumors 68030

    CylonGlitch

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    #17
    That is incorrect, it is still just handled like a window; it doesn't stop the background desktop / system processes like the fullscreen in Windows. That's the point. Yes it LOOKs like it, but it isn't the same.
     
  18. cluthz macrumors 68040

    cluthz

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    #18
    I really like how the mac client is, with built-in fraps and the handling of window mode.

    Also I use the apple key as push to talk and I've mapped key binds with alt and ctlr too, so the "windows key" in win7 is also ruining the show for me.

    Also with GeForce GTX285 and only 1680x1050 res I have no issues keeping 60 FPS on Ultra settings in OSX.

    In my MacBook Pro however I did play WoW in windows (must be two years ago) to test it out, and the performance in windows was perhaps 15-20% better.
     
  19. Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    Your signature shows you don't have a 'real' Mac. I wonder if ANY of the iMac's can run Wow at ultra settings at native resolution...
     
  20. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #20
    Pretty sure the i7 iMac with the 2GB card would be OK :)

    Edwin
     
  21. antonis macrumors 68000

    antonis

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    Jun 10, 2011
    #21
    iMac mid 2010 model, with i7, and I can play it on high detail (not ultra) without problems. Actually, I end up with custom settings since I raise some of the graphics features to ultra.

    You could experiment more with the graphics options so you can boost the settings that actually make a difference to full, and lower some others that don't really matter.

    FWIW, I'd never exchange my Mac wow client with the windows one.
     
  22. Miharu macrumors 6502

    Miharu

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    #22
    I'm really confused here. No process is ever stopped in the background, when you're playing full screen in Windows you still have everything running just like in OS X. For example, you can have your music in Winamp or get messages through messenger. Besides if all processes except the game was halted the OS couldn't really function. The increase in gaming performance using full screen is identical in both Windows and OS X.
     
  23. cluthz macrumors 68040

    cluthz

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    #23
    Honestly I don't think so.
    The benchmarks I've seen of the 6970M places it around same performance as the GTX285, and with 2560x1440 compared to my 1680x1050 res it would have a lot more pixels to push around (twice as many pixels actually)

    It will probably run at ultra settings, but it won't keep a steady high FPS.
     
  24. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #24
    AMD drivers are better on the Mac compared to Nvidia ones based on my experiences when porting games. The NV card when porting the latest game we had a few performance problems yet the 6970M could run on max settings, it might be different in WoW but the AMD 6000 series performs great on the Mac.

    If asked the best card to get for a Mac right now the AMD 6000 series would be my answer.

    Edwin
     
  25. Dr. McKay, Sep 23, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011

    Dr. McKay thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    You can download bootcamp drivers from AMD's site as well. Are these newer/better than the ones supplied by Apple (in my case bootcamp 3.3 update) ?
    In any case, you can't download them from AMD's site, since it asks you for a login and password.
    Can anyone clear this up ?

    Edit :
    This is interesting :
    http://www.barefeats.com/imac11e.html

    What strikes me as odd is that the gap between Win7 and OS X on the iMac is a lot smaller. Wow Cata is even faster in OS X, and this really came as a surprise. Seeing that I mostly play Wow, I wonder if moving to bootcamp was even worth it for me.
    Nevertheless, I can up the settings in Wow on my win7 partition. It's Fair to Good overall, as opposed to Low to Fair in OS X. But, and this may sound strange, I have the impression that, even with higher settings, the world in Wow doesn't look as good in Win7 as it does in OS X. Or maybe it's just me.

    In any case, Win7 gives me access to LOADS and LOADS of demos that aren't even available on OS X. So that's definitely a plus.
     

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