TfT Performance: Interim Results
We now had five opponents in the competition: Roam Research, Obsidian, Logseq, Craft, and RemNote. Time for a first interim result; who is ahead and who still has to catch up?
I took all results from the in-depth benchmarks done before. If I had more than one result for the same action (e.g., app starting time or opening backlinks), I calculated the average of all tries.
All diagrams are sorted with the fastest application on top and the slowest at the bottom.
And please remember: We focus here exclusively on the performance figures of some operations. These may be entirely irrelevant for your use case. Also, the numbers say nothing about the tool's other capabilities - so please take the results with a grain of salt.
Times for importing files aren’t critical because you won't do this daily. But waiting almost half an hour for the slowest application while the fastest can process the same amount in just 18 seconds is a huge difference and can be annoying.
Obsidian was first when importing the files, particularly impressive, even 10,000 files Obsidian imported faster than any other application 2,000.
Logseq also was on the quicker side (unless I tried to import too much), while Roam Research and Craft are more on the slower side.
Application start times are essential, especially if you want to quickly note something but don’t have the app open.
Again Obsidian was on the faster side, joined by Craft. Both apps are so fast that you will really start them if needed. Remnote and Roam Research are on the slower side, and you will probably use another application for your quick notes. Logseq scored in between.
Long waiting times when opening pages with many backlinks are annoying and disturb your working flow. Most of the applications are pretty fast, with Roam Research on the slower side.
When opening the backlinks or references area, all programs load a short preview of the page. This could take some time and eats a lot of memory if you have many backlinks. RemNote and Obsidian are doing an excellent job here, while the others take their time. Compare the 5 seconds for Obsidian with the 2 minutes and 44 seconds for Roam Research when working with the 10,000 pages database.
Pasting formatted content is something I use very often when exploring new topics. I expect that the applications can handle this in an instant.
Everything below 1 second fulfills this requirement, so Obsidian again wins. This time RemNote is slower, and I find this a bit annoying; it feels chewy.
Exporting is a bit like importing - not the most critical category. And to be fair, Obsidian got the best result here because they use local storage with markdown files and don’t offer an export function. Logseq also operates on a local repository so I could have ranked them also with 0 seconds on place one.
Overall I think that all results here are fine.
Obsidian ranked first in almost every category; if you like the user experience (which is a different topic than performance), you will do nothing wrong with it. RemNote delivered pretty solid results even with larger data sets. Little hiccup is the chewy UI when pasting text. Craft has a light and a dark side. While very limited in the amount of data it could process, most day-to-day operations were speedy and smooth. Logseq showed that it’s pretty fast on small data sets, but the larger the collection gets, the slower it becomes. The same goes for Roam Research in contrast to Logseq handles even the big data set, but some of the processing times are annoying.
If you have any questions or suggestions, please leave a comment.
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