Does MATLAB suck on OS X?

May 27th, 2009 | Categories: Mac OS X, math software, matlab | Tags:

I recently helped someone install the new 64bit beta version of MATLAB 2009a on a dual quad core Mac pro and so far he seems very pleased with it.  The 32bit version simply didn’t cut it because he needed to be able to access huge amounts of memory.  More and more researchers at my University seem to be choosing Mac Pros over other platforms and yet it seems that the MATLAB experience on them is far from perfect (according to this link at least).

People seem to complain that its slow compared with other operating systems on comparable hardware along with a clunky user interface since it uses X11 rather than Cocoa.

I’ll lay my cards on the table – I’m not a major Mac fan – but when so many people, who’s judgement I respect, choose them over other platforms then I sit up, take notice and try to understand.  Does anyone reading this have experience with MATLAB on OS X – favourable or otherwise?

  1. David S
    May 27th, 2009 at 14:56
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    Yes, I’ve been using MATLAB on OS X since it became available. bench seems to indicate that the graphics performance could be better, but it’s certainly fast enough for my purposes. On the other hand, numerical performance is excellent. It’s true that the GUI is nonstandard, but it works well and the engineering/science types don’t seem to mind that it’s not Cocoa (although we’d be pleasantly surprised if The Mathworks decided to rewrite the GUI to support Cocoa).

  2. June 1st, 2009 at 15:46
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  3. August 5th, 2011 at 17:56
    Reply | Quote | #3

    It’s okay for running some class projects. But for CUDA, Macbook Pro just won’t cut it. And I don’t think my MATLAB is using duo cores very efficiently… there are bugs using matlab in terminal, and nojvm option as well.