Browsers Hardware Rendering: Direct2D vs. “Regular” (GDI)

By | November 24, 2009

As you might know, Microsoft is planning to add hardware accelerated rendering to its upcoming Internet Explorer 9 release.

What about other web browsers? Well, Mozilla plans to do the same and ship final product faster than MS does.

Moreover, Bas Schouten has published interesting benchmark results: Direct2S vs. GDI

Browsers Hardware Rendering: Direct2D vs. Regular (GDI)

Judging from this graph, in some cases, hardware accelerated rendering can drastically improve browser performance. Yes, that’s a good thing.

But wait, there is more. You can actually download pre-alpha release of Firefox 3.7 with this feature already integrated in and test it yourself.

Download Firefox 3.7.


About (Author Profile)

Vygantas is a former web designer whose projects are used by companies such as AMD, NVIDIA and departed Westood Studios. Being passionate about software, Vygantas began his journalism career back in 2007 when he founded Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.

Comments (7)

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  1. tomass says:

    wow, impressive. Don’t forget that Opera has been working on they Vega graphic library, I wonder when will they release it and what results will we get with it.
    Anyway, isn’t direct 2D windows only? What about multiplatformness?

    • somebody says:

      Opera has Vega in Presto 2.4, but is disabled in the Opera Mobile 10 Beta that they released recently. I’m expecting a desktop build with Presto 2.4 and Vega soon and could be as soon as this weekend.

      • pneumatyka says:

        That’s an outstanding information. I cannot believe it, but I would like it to be true. Is it only your hunch, or do you have some inside info?

        • Nick says:

          Too optimistic. This year – yes, this weekend – doubtfully

          • somebody says:

            I’m not posting this on a hunch. I read this in the following link:

            Of particular interest is the following statement :

            [quote]For this beta release, we have not enabled Vega accelerated rendering yet, so features such as border-radius, box-shadow, etc. that depend on our Vega graphics backend don’t work for now. Also note that this is an early version of Presto 2.4 and not all standards features have been included in this release. We have more in the pipeline for future Opera Mobile 10 versions, so stay tuned.

            That being said, Presto 2.4 brings new support for a couple of interesting CSS properties to Opera Mobile 10 beta; we explore these in the sections below.[/quote]

          • Nick says:

            I know re 2.4 in mobile version. My remark was related to possibility of Presto 2.4 in this weekend build.

    • DonkeyKong says:

      Twitter message from Haavard at Opera!

      “Hm. Presto 2.4 with software rendering is faster at iBench than Firefox with Direct2D hardware acceleration?! (See”