JavaFX versus AWT/Swing Hardware Acceleration

Stephen F Northover steve.x.northover at
Fri Jan 3 09:09:43 PST 2014

Hi Ryan,

I'll let others describe hardware acceleration in AWT/Swing but in 
JavaFX, D3D and ES2 shaders are used to draw.  These run directly on the 
graphics card and render data that is downloaded there.  Because JavaFX 
has a scene graph, it has a notion of what has been changed and can 
render only a subset of the scene graph nodes.

This is a very high level description of JavaFX but captures the essence 
of what is happening.  Any other FX committers want to comment?


On 2014-01-01 1:39 PM, Ryan Cuprak wrote:
>   What is the difference between hardware acceleration in JavaFX versus Swing/AWT? I heard a while back someone claim that Swing/AWT could never fully leverage hardware acceleration. However there are the usual mix of -D parameters (sun.java2.opengl/sun.java2d.d3d, etc.) for Swing/AWT. So I am just wondering how JavaFX’s acceleration differs from the hardware acceleration in Swing. When I was giving a talk at a JUG meeting someone called me out on the hardware acceleration bit and I realized I didn’t fully understand the differences between the two.
>   I understand that JavaFX has a scene graph and Swing doesn’t etc. So I am assuming that the scene graph operations are optimized on the GPU whereas if you were trying to replicate a scene graph in Swing you would obviously be doing all the work on the CPU. So Swing’s hardware acceleration is more about buffers?
>   I did come across this article:
>   Specifically this line caught my attention "Prism finally renders effects with full hardware acceleration and without the extra buffer copies that spoil effects on the Swing toolkit.”
>   This article is a dated - brings up a second question about hardware acceleration with a hybrid Swing/JavaFX application - what happens?
>   Thanks,
> -Ryan

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