Blender 2.64 UI lag with new Mac Minis (2012)


I’ve been using Blender (2.64a for OS X) occasionally for product visualization/rendering with an old Mac Mini (early 2009, 2.0Ghz Core 2 Duo, 8GB, SSD, Geforce 9400M) and its amazing how well it has performed, except for the fact that photerealistic rendering could be ‘faster’. But for rather simple models/scenes speed wise, it’s been more than adequate.

Now, I was able to try out Blender (2.64a) with a new 2012 Mac Mini (2.6Ghz i7, 16GB, SSD, Intel HD4000) and no surprise that the rendering times (e.g. in cycles) are 4-5x faster. Also the IntelHD4000 performs 3-5x faster in generic openGL tests (in OpenGL extension viewer) compared to the older Geforce 9400M.

However, there seems to be a problem with the UI in form of menus and other interface elements lagging. I tried different window draw methods in system settings and while they do help a little, the UI is still lagging enough to make it a barely usable.

As I’ve understood, Blender uses OpenGL heavily for the UI, so I suspect the culprit here is the Intel integrated GPU + poor/buggy openGL drivers (generally or just in OS X)?

I would much appreciate it, if anyone knows of any tricks/hacks (other than getting a computer with a proper GPU) I could try to solve this problem? (e.g. custom compiled Blender using certain flags to support new Mac Minis?)


P.S. I’m also planning to try out Blender on the MacMini with Linux or Windows7 to see if the drivers are any better.