Regarding performance - Textlabel vs Decal

Context for the topic:

I’ve been primarily using decals for signs, labels, anything with text for the majority of my time as a builder, but in recent years, I’ve switched to using SurfaceGUI TextLabels.


This is because:

  1. Creating and uploading decals mainly just for text is tedious.
  2. Compared to point one, just plopping in my trusty TextLabel part is extremely easy.
  3. With TextLabels, I don’t have to struggle with moderation false-positives making me want to commit self oof. (Don’t worry, I don’t use them to maliciously bypass moderation)

But I’ve had a growing curiosity about something…

I’ve noticed when looking at a TextLabel compared to a Decal with wireframes, they look like this:

There is a visual complexity in the wireframes of the TextLabels compared to the Decal.

Now, in my common usage, I just use sample text without the background.
But I am somewhat worried about the performance impact since I use these labels a lot.

I have a pretty good mid-tier gaming computer so it’s not the top priority of worries for me, but it would be useful insight.


Decals are texture files rendered as-is. This odd incredibly fast and only has an impact on how much VRAM your game uses (but not really at this texture size).

GUIs require roblox to generate a bit more data before sending it to the graphics card. Not sure on the details but at a minimum, it turns the font data into pixels (probably a cached step) and figures out the UV coordinates for everything. This is also incredibly fast.

So in summary: decals are probably lighter weight, too many would increase load times, and neither are probably going to be the bottleneck on your games performance.

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Knowing me, if I were to have kept using decals, I’d end up making max resolution decals, thus creating larger files that have to load in. And with a lot of those, in combo with the ungodly amount of textures that have to load in for materialvariants… :grimacing:

I’ve noticed that text GUIs load pretty much instantaneously (but there is an ever so slight but noticeable delay before the font loads, during that time it uses legacy or whatever the fallback font is).

But anyways, the original question was more about the impact of rendering than the loading of the assets, but you did get me to think more about it and I realise that text GUIs stop rendering once the parent GUI or perhaps the parent part is out of view.

Which you can see happen if the text extends outside the parent GUI bounds and you pan the camera so it’s out of view.

Though that probably doesn’t matter because anything outside of the FOV shouldn’t be rendering at all.

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