Dorico 4 uses GPU

In contrast to 3.5, Dorico 4 now uses GPU power and significantly less CPU on my system. Bravo!

Certain parts of the user interface will be using the GPU, yes, the parts that are using a new framework, but more remains to be done in future versions in this direction.


For me the energy usage is nearly 3x as much as Dorico 3.5 though during playback…

GPU acceleration is good thing, we want more of this. It offloads the CPU for audio tasks, and gives better score performance. I’ll guess the smooth scrolling and such is GPU now.

Now if one could only find a reasonably priced GPU card for an upgrade. :grimacing:

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Don’t even talk to me about that! I had to buy a handful of 3080’s and a 3090, I don’t want to be reminded.

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I would appreciate a clarification on this. My understanding was Dorico 4 does not use any GPU. On Windows 10, I’m not seeing any indication GPU is involved in any way. And I also do not notice any difference in power consumption vs 3.5. Am I doing something wrong?

Your not doing anything wrong, don’t worry about it.

FWIW all applications are using GPU obviously, but if it goes through the OS API it gets buried in the Window Manager process. To make it into the GPU Engine heading like you see there, you need to have an application typically that uses more heavyweight API’s, basically DirectX or CUDA (or the AMD equivalent).

Anyhow it doesn’t matter one whit, it’s just some internal code for Qt that are doing this probably, don’t need to think about it …

The prerequisite is, of course, your GPU hardware and software is also supported by Dorico’s framework.

That should be irrelevant. I’ll eat my hat if Dorico is using CUDA, and OpenGL is mostly abandoned (there’s Vulcan but it won’t be using that either). It does support DirectX and Metal, but the point of those OS layer API’s is precisely to hide the underlying hardware and software drivers. So if you can use your GPU with your OS then you are good. This is all in 100% absence of knowing the code of course but I’d place a bet. And as I said it really doesn’t matter …

Here’s an example using a smaller project on my system with two open windows in Dorico:
The Windows 10 task manager shows me
under Dorico 3.5 CPU 40% GPU 0%
under Dorico 4.0 CPU 22% GPU 18%


Would you mind posting a screenshot? I’d really love to understand what’s happening here with 4.0, because I am using a very large project and 3.5 is extremely slow switching between modes… Thanks!

Did you activate the use of GPU in your System-settings?
My graphics card is NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB

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Not sure if this is helpful or not, but here’s what I get while playing back the Rite of Spring file that @Stephen_Taylor so generously uploaded.

Dorico 3.5


Dorico 4.0



This is great, thank you both! I’ll be checking my system later today. Much appreciated.

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Here are my numbers, playing back the same relatively large Orchestral Score.

Dorico 3.5:


Dorico 4:


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Hi Daniel.

I’m a new Dorico user, and I like it quite a lot. For example, I love how responsive and fluid the Play mode is, so I assume this is one of the parts that are GPU-accelerated. What I like less is the visual performance of the Write mode, especially compared to the Play mode. On my machine (MacBook Pro 15" 2015) it provides a much less fluid experience, especially when scrolling. (100% CPU usage when scrolling.)

  1. What can I do to improve the “visual” performance in the Write mode? One thing that I did was to run Dorico in the low resolution mode. This helps quite a lot, but, well, it makes run Dorico in low resolution. It seems that using the Gallery View also helps.

  2. Is there anything known about the Write mode becoming GPU-accelerated? If so, is there a rough timeline that you could share with us?

One might presume that the GPU is used for recalculating the display each time one adds or moves an element. But moving hairpin ends in Engrave mode is glacially slow on my machine. And this is odd, because it used to be that moving notes up and down was slow at the end of the flow, with four or so tabs open; but now (in the same score) with Full Score and 11 part tabs opened, it is not so slow.

I am mystified.

In due course we will complete the transition from the older, imperative-based user interface framework that Dorico uses to the newer, declarative-based one that can take advantage of hardware acceleration. However, this will only improve the speed of scrolling, panning and zooming when moving around the score in Write mode: it will not improve the speed of editing, which is the limiting factor when it comes to actually working with the score.

It is a significant project to switch completely to this newer framework, a project that will take a number of years to complete, and there won’t be any further significant changes in this area in the Dorico 4.x cycle. We don’t yet have any concrete plans for Dorico 5 and beyond, but that would be the earliest possible point at which further significant changes in this area could be made.