[Design-team] SVG rendering performance

Martin Sourada martin.sourada at gmail.com
Mon Aug 10 21:21:24 UTC 2009

On Mon, 2009-08-10 at 21:58 +0100, Charlie Brej wrote:
> If we choose to distribute SVGs as the default background files, it may be an 
> idea to examine the rendering speed. On my rather old home machine, it takes 
> over two minutes to draw the mosaico SVG background [1] with the CPU running 
> flat out. What really increases the cpu demand is the use of blur. Removing all 
> blur brings it down to 3 seconds (about the same as other PNG/JPEG backgrounds).
> We should also remove all the additional XML fluff inkscape puts into the files.
Well, with complex SVGs you cannot get the same rendering speed as with
PNG. In my experience what makes rendering slow is various effects,
especially blur, large amount of objects, especially layered one over
the other. AFAIK xml parsing is the fastest of it all... Also, SVG
rendering capabilities in gnome are not very good, especially objects
with applied blur are mis-rendered as well objects using masks, fonts
are hinted differently than in inkscape, which often results in
different texts dimensions, which makes it hard to do proper layout, ...

IMHO, we are not in state where we could afford using anything other
than PNG or really simple SVG as our default background.


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