Performance Benchmarks: Flash
GUIMark 2 Flash Vector Charting
Internet Explorer 9, Safari, and Opera all score right around 60 FPS, with IE9 going barely over that limit. Surprisingly, Firefox 4 actually drops in performance compared to 3.6.15, only earning 47 FPS as opposed to 60. Chrome still achieves 46 FPS with its baked-in Flash player.
GUIMark 2 Flash Bitmap Gaming
Once again, IE9, Safari, and Opera lead the pack, with scores in the 50-52 FPS range. In a reversal of the vector charting results, FF4 gains around 7 FPS over FF 3.6 in bitmap gaming. Google Chrome again lags behind the pack at 41.5 frames per second.
GUIMark 2 Flash Text Column
Opera, Safari, and Internet Explorer again manage to plant themselves in the top three spots with scores near 30 FPS. Firefox 4 is close behind in fourth, with nearly the same score achieved in version 3.6.15, and Chrome brings up the rear at 26 FPS.
Flash Benchmark '08
Right out of the blue Safari pulls off an upset, stealing first place from IE9. Opera places third with Chrome and Firefox 4 closely in tow.
IE9, Safari, and Opera are clearly the best in terms of Flash performance in Windows 7. Firefox 4 still places fourth, noticeably behind the other three, while Chrome is the slowest for Flash playback. But keep in mind that Google ships Flash with Chrome, and version 10 has full sandboxing of Flash content. Windows 7 doesn't seem to have the consistent issues with Flash that Linux and OS X have though, so Flash sandboxing isn't nearly as essential on this OS. Basically, if Flash crashes a whole lot for you, it may be worth taking the hit in FPS.