Comments re new metal renderer
- iTerm2 version: 3.1.6beta3
- OS version: 10.13.3
I'm trying out the new Metal renderer on a 13-inch MBP from late 2012. Here is a bit of early feedback.
The "dimmed inactive panes" look terrible with the metal renderer, if the box for "dim only the text, not the background" is checked. Firstly, the background is dimmed, in the sense that it's made darker. Secondly, it isn't the whole background that's darker, it appears to only be the part of the background that corresponds with where rows of text could be placed. (E.g., in fullscreen mode there's a little space at the bottom that's too short to accommodate a row of text cells, but iTerm2 paints it anyway to make things look good. That little space is not "dimmed" by the metal renderer.) The inactive pane looks as though a darker, semi-transparent rectangle was simply laid over the top of the pane but doesn't cover all of the pane. Maybe there's just no way to make this combination of options work under the new renderer, in which case I'll abandon the metal; OTOH, maybe this is the sort of thing that can be fixed.
I had a crash (unable to recover the log, sorry) that was almost certainly the metal renderer's fault, when I ran a CLI utility that shows a "throbber" instead of a progress bar. I'll be on the lookout for this and try to get you a report.
I do notice a difference in performance with the metal renderer on, even on this relatively old machine. Sometimes when text scrolls by very quickly, I can tell that it is "smoother" for lack of a better word. But usually it's not noticeable. I have not noticed any difference in latency between typing a key and it's appearance in the terminal. (I never found this anything less than stellar to begin with.) The occasional CLI utilities that show a "throbber" look a little nicer because the "throbbing" is sometimes smoother. But if this is the extent of the performance improvement, I'll probably just turn off the metal as "not worth it" in a few weeks.
I suppose I'm wondering about the incompatibility between the metal renderer and having a transparent background. I myself don't use a transparent background. But lots of people do, and I suspect even the majority of users do, and thus the lack of transparency seems like it will be a dealbreaker for too many people.