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Old 06-22-2019, 04:10 PM   #12
JamesPeters
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Join Date: Aug 2011
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Default Custom font choice affects CPU use?

Here's a little something that caught me off guard. It seems the choice of font for the menus (in Reaper for Linux) can affect the CPU.

I had edited the libSwell.colortheme file on my system while using MX Linux (using XFCE desktop environment), changing the font to Noto Sans (and making the font sizes a bit larger). It seemed to work fine. Noto Sans fonts are included in MX Linux, a significant number of them.

Now I'm using Linux Mint (XFCE). By default it also has the Noto Sans font family (including additional variants). I imported all my previous Reaper settings (since it was a SSD format / new OS install) so when I started Reaper it was using that same libSwell.colortheme file. However it seemed the menus were sluggish. Opening the "options" menu for instance (since it's a long menu, good for this test) and moving the mouse cursor up/down, the highlighted menu option lagged behind the cursor significantly. Also my CPU spiked (I could hear the fan spinning up).

When I (finally) tried a font other than Noto Sans (Open Sans for instance) in the libSwell.colortheme file, the menu responsiveness returned to normal and the CPU didn't spike nearly as high (probably a normal amount under the circumstances).

I could guess that using certain fonts in a theme might also increase CPU and make things more sluggish. (So I switched all my custom fonts to Open Sans just in case.)

I don't know why in Linux Mint XFCE this would be any different (same DE, using the same window manager/appearance/DPI/etc. settings as MX Linux since I'd made notes of all of it and set it up exactly the same in Mint as I'd done in MX), except for the fact I notice there are lots more Noto Sans family font variants installed (it seems there are ~2x the number as MX Linux, which is kind of insane). Perhaps if the font chosen in Reaper is part of a very large installed font family, it has something to do with it? (Just a blind stab in the dark.)

It's not a huge deal since there are lots of fonts a person can use. But this might help narrow down some of the "sluggish UI" complaints happening especially with MacOS.

If you want me to test something further, let me know. I don't plan to switch distros again for a while, but other than that I'm open to suggestions.
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Last edited by JamesPeters; 06-22-2019 at 04:16 PM.
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