Chainfire3D, Tweak Memory for Better Android Device Performance for Root Users
Jun 7, 2011 9:24 AM –
[root] Chainfire3D is an intermediary OpenGL driver. What does that mean? It means that Chainfire3D sits between your apps and the graphics drivers, and can intercept and/or change commands between the two. It has some built-in functions, and can be further extended with plugins to provide extra functionality. Android 2.1 and newer, NOT for Honeycomb! Chainfire3D is for 1GHz+ devices only! ROOT is required for this program, as well as a writable /system partition. S-OFF is also required on HTC devices! There is some risk involved installing the driver. If you have CWM, it would be prudent to create a backup before installing!
Features include reducing texture size and quality to reduce memory use and potentially increase game performance, as well as increasing memory use potentially increase performance. Be sure to check the thread on XDA for available plugins! http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1087427
Price: Free, ~$4.27 for Pro
Tested on: Samsung Galaxy Tablet, HTC HD2, Samsung Galaxy S, Samsung Galaxy S II, Samsung Epic 4G, Motorola Atrix 4G, Motorola Droid 2, LG Optimus 2X, Google Nexus S
Pros & Cons:
- Allows you to tweak your device’s OpenGL drivers for optimal performance!
- Allows for the downscaling of textures to increase frame rate!
- Allows for the unpacking of textures to increase image quality!
- Night mode to conserve on battery life!
- Customization of performance tweaks per application in pro version!
- Optional plugins for pro version for increased functionality!
- Overall gripe about Android not the app; Android devices are notorious for battery drain, both the need for this type of app and visual sacrifices for the sake of performance & battery life takes a chip at the platform
- Sometimes decreasing textures provides noticeably worse image quality.
- No graphical appeal to application’s interface.
- Not supported on all devices.
Chainfire 3D for root users is a utility which interface’s with your device’s 3D drivers. It allows you to upscale or downscale your device’s 3D graphics to improve frame rate or graphic detail on your device. Chainfire does this by either unrolling textures or reducing texture size on system side of your device.
To set up Chainfire 3D you must have a rooted Android device. It has not been tested on all devices, but there is a working device list on the Market to tell you if your device is supported. The installation of Chainfire 3D requires editing your device’s OpenGl drivers, so make a nandroid backup of your device before installing the Chainfire drivers.
After installing the driver on your device you are able to start using the application to improve your device’s performance. I have been using Chainfire 3D on my Galaxy Tab for the past week and have noticed significant performance improvements in normal day to day activities. I have always been annoyed by the inconsistency of the Touchwiz interface for Android so to improve device responsiveness I chose to reduce texture size through Chainfire 3D. In normal activities like email or the writing of this review I notice absolutely no loss of graphical detail and significant performance improvements. In gaming or benchmarking the device through Quadrant, I have noticed an improvement in frame rate, but sometimes very drastic image loss.
While running my Galaxy Tablet with Chainfire 3D installed through Quadrant, I noticed that during the spinning planet test all textures on the planet were removed and it was changed to a spinning white ball. I also noticed while testing My Paper Plane 2 a significant decrease in Image Quality with Chainfire 3D installed and set to texture reduction.
After experimenting with Texture Reduction I used the option to unroll textures. With texture unrolling on I noticed a significant increase in the quality of the images running the same tests. In My Paper Plane 2 the 3D models looked more detailed and full of color. The environments in general seemed more appealing. Likewise my Quadrant scores and frame rate decreased slightly, but the detail on the 3D models improved noticeably.
In Chainfire 3D Pro you can designate specific quality levels for each application. So while writing a document or viewing email your device could downscale the images to improve your device’s performance. Then when you want to watch a movie or play a game you could upscale the image quality in order to improve the look and feel of the movie or game. Chainfire Pro also supports plugins which I was unable to test for this review, but add additional functionality to the application.
Chainfire 3D also has an option to put your device in Night Mode. In Night Mode the color white is replaced with another color like Amber or Green which is more battery efficient and easily viewable in the dark.
Chainfire 3D Main Application
Chainfire 3D Night Mode
Chainfire 3D OpenGL
Chainfire 3D Texture Enhancer
Chainfire 3D Texture Reduction Glitch
Chainfire 3D is extremely useful if you are wishing to tweak your phone or tablet to improve performance or image detail. It allows you to customize which applications are viewed in what way in order to achieve performance the way you want it.
I use the image scaling features frequently, but I do not think I would ever use the Night Mode. I don’t find the need for battery savings at night at all necessary. I also do not like the discoloration to the screen that Night Mode brings with it.
Ease of Use:
Chainfire 3D is incredibly easy to set up as long as your device is supported. All you need to do is download the application from the marketplace, make a nandroid backup just in case, and then follow the in-application instructions. You are able to transition easily between reducing texture quality and enhancing it without having to reboot your device. This is one of the easiest to use root applications I have used and does not require too much technical knowledge to set up initially.
If you like the performance tweaks that this application gives you, which I do, then you will be leaving this application on your device for life. You don’t need to constantly reopen the application to tweak settings, but you do need the application on your device in order for the Chainfire OpenGL drivers to remain on your device. One of the great things about this application, especially in the pro version, is that you can fully customize the application to work with each of your applications for optimal performance. Once you have the settings in place you can leave the application entirely alone and just go back to using your device business as usual.
The interface for Chainfire 3D is not visually appealing but is extremely easy to use. As is the case with most root applications, Chainfire 3D is extremely minimalistic. It allows you to see all the information that is needed for you to see and easily make changes without going through a series of menus or navigating some fancy icon system. Instead you see headings a description and easy on/off check boxes for all of the application’s settings. This makes Chainfire 3D easy to use, but a little less visually appealing then other utility applications.
Tags: Android App
, Android Apps
, Android Rooting
, AndroidTapp.com App Review
, chainfire 3d
, Chainfire3D Pro
, performance tweaks
Categorised in: Utilities