There is actually some buzz around the 60 frames per second draw rate limit fixed by browsers to Flash player. All the noise cames from the bubblemark benchmark that is intended to compare performances of different plug-ins while playing an animation at the maximum speed they can. The only result we get with this test is there is a limit fixed by browsers to the draw rate of plug-ins. Everybody is agree to said that results of this test are distorted.
Sean Christmann is working on another benchmark project named GUIMark that have the smart idea to only benchmark RIA tools performances under the 60 fps limit. By doing this, the plug-in rendering rate is not artificially limited by the browser, but by performances of the plug-in itself.
The problem is that a new test came up on the bubblemark website to demonstrate that Silverlight 2 could run an animation up to 950 fps (on my computer it does) while Flash player only plays 60fps. Honestly, I don't know how Silverlight could override browsers rendering rate limits. The only thing interesting me was that I could do as good as Silverlight in a standalone Flash player.
I already have worked on finding a way to override this limit to have better results with bubblemark benchmark since a discussion I have with James Ward when he cames in Paris for the last Adobe Air tour in January. I see that the problem still interests him.
So the last week-end, after doing some tests I realize that when changing the plug-in wmode property value to "transparent" in Firefox with my bubblemark benchmark, it reaches an uncredible 950fps framerate on my computer. It is as good as Silverlight does on the bubblemark website. I have made some other tests and it sadly only works in Internet Explorer.
Here is the animation (that could reach a good framerate only with Firefox) :
Here is the source of the Flex project that I have used to export this animation. Nothing fancy, I just have refactored the bubblemark example, lowered the Timer event to zero and added a static html-template to the flex project.
You could try this web page were the plug-in runs faster because there is less HTML content than here (you could link it directly if you want).
I'm interested to know if you get same results on Firefox Mac and eventually other browsers and other OS. I already have some results but made with an old macintosh, I'm not sure if I can rely on it.