[PD] Performance comparisons!

Hans-Christoph Steiner hans at eds.org
Fri Dec 28 19:28:29 CET 2007

One thing that stands out on the Mac OS X front is the fact that Pd  
is using the double precision math functions even though Pd uses  
single precision floats.  You can see it here:


Here's a previous discussion on this:


I don't think this would make a massive difference overall, but I'll  
bet it would make a significant difference for any patch using sin,  
cos, atan, atan2, sqrt, log, exp, fabs, or pow.  Anyone feel like  
writing a patch to make ./configure set things up properly?


On Dec 28, 2007, at 7:34 AM, bsoisoi wrote:

> I second that.  If your main motivating factor is performance,  
> Linux is the way to go.  I too run a dual boot Linux/OSX system on  
> my 2nd notebook, and have found Pd patches running in linux to run  
> with much less cpu load than OSX.  If you choose to use JACK  
> instead of Portaudio on OSX, you can reduce their cpu load  
> significantly (fyi, JACK isn't yet compatible with 10.5).  The Mac/ 
> Linux system is probably the best of both worlds + you can satisfy  
> your OS X package needs with Darwinports (which rocks).
> As for windows, haven't used it for audio since 1999 and don't  
> intend on going back.
> Do you have any other main considerations besides price and  
> performance when looking for a new machine?
> ~Brandon
> On Dec 27, 2007, at 6:44 PM, Derek Holzer wrote:
>> Hi Mike,
>> Mike McGonagle wrote:
>>> Hello all,
>>> I was wondering if anyone has done any sort of "Platform"  
>>> comparisons? I
>>> am in the market for a new machine, and was just wondering if  
>>> there were
>>> any performance comparions for the various platforms for which PD is
>>> available.
>> More than enough stuff in the archives about this. My take:
>> I don't know anything about Windows, haven't touched it since  
>> 2002. I do
>> find that quite a bit of PD is either optimized for or developed with
>> Linux on Intel architecture in mind. You have the widest choice of
>> objects available and often running better than on any other  
>> platform.
>> Additionally, I run Gentoo and OSX both on a PPC Powerbook and
>> discovered long ago that patches running on the same machine and  
>> same PD
>> version are more than twice as fast on Linux as on OSX. There are
>> probably many reasons for this, the most recently-discussed one  
>> was the
>> interface with Core Audio.
>> If you're up to it, a Linux partition on an Intel machine (Mac or PC)
>> would be the highest performance way to go. That leaves a lot up  
>> to you
>> still.
>> best,
>> d.
>> -- 
>> derek holzer ::: http://www.umatic.nl ::: http://blog.myspace.com/ 
>> macumbista
>> ---Oblique Strategy # 199:
>> "What would make this really successful?"
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As we enjoy great advantages from inventions of others, we should be  
glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours; and  
this we should do freely and generously.         - Benjamin Franklin

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