Anyone else feel the only thing holding Penpot back is performance?

I’ve been using Figma previously beforehand, and I discovered about Penpot through r/FigmaDesign as alternatives. I wanted to try something different and as there is a likelihood of Figma restricting certain features and paywalling them like what happened with Dev Mode which I was kind of sad about.

That was until I discovered Penpot, and I find it pretty awesome, and it has the code inspect feature that Figma formerly had when it was on beta and I am glad to find such feature, and the fact that it is Open source and that it is free l I really like and as well as the Grid and Flex layouts and all of that that came with Penpot 2.0.

But I think the major downside with Penpot is definitely performance, loading and moving elements are just laggy for some reason and I feel it’s just not as performance optimized as it is in Figma.

Even having little elements feels laggy for some reason, whether it be down to the Wi-Fi or server-side, I feel it is a hassle to handle and laggy and I do not know if this applies to others as well

I have 16GB of RAM running Dual-Channel and an i5-8350u if that is relevant and I run Penpot on Edge which is a Chromium-based browser which many suggested when finding around for such topic like this, and I don’t know if self-hosting actually increases performance, I tried finding threads and haven’t found anything about it.

I feel if they sort the optimization and make just as fast as Figma’s which uses WASM compared to Penpot’s Clojure. Because right now as a standalone it really is just “manageable” but “hard” to use. It’s unfortunate you need to wait for things to load and it isn’t as smooth and feels jittery. That aside, Penpot is really good, I just wished it had better performance and not as laggy as it is now.

I really hope the Penpot team takes the performance aspect into consideration in future updates, maybe even make a desktop app that actually utilizes the computer’s GPU of that sort. Till then I will try keep using Penpot and learn using it as an alternative to Figma and learn its nooks and crannies and see how I can implement it alongside my design processes with both Figma and Penpot.


It’s definitely not your computer. Penpot is actively working on performance at the moment to ease these concerns, but yeah there’s definitely some not so fun lags.


Yes, please. Snappiness is super important for intuitively working with a tool. Performance is usually an ongoing effort in software development. Shout-out to the Penpot people working on that.


unfortunately yes. Especially considering that It’s already an effort to get used to a new software’s interface. I am ok with giving up with advanced features, but it is too hard to deal with lags =(

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I haven’t used it enough to experience its performance. For me, the biggest thing that’s holding me back from moving to it is the component system, which even with v2 is lackluster, lacking states. I know that work is in the backlog, but I feel like it should be prioritized.

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If you look at their releases, they have basically a 3.0 on deck. They aren’t marketing it like 2.0 but it should be out by the end of the summer. But yeah, again, performance isn’t snappy.