As you may see from previous posts, I have been spending a lot of time lately in search of the ultimate framework for PHP. I have been involved with a team developing an open source component oriented framework since the beginning of last summer because the only equivalent framework we could find was Prado, and the team lead was very dissatisfied with the load and performance times on it. He tested it when version 3 had just been released, so we were unsure if performance increasing patches would be applied later. The tests were run on RedHat Enterprise Server and Suse, both on dual Xeon 2.0GHz servers with 4GB RAM and 15k RPM SCSI drives, and the load time for the blog app provided with Prado (not a very complicated app) was between .3 and .4 seconds per page. This is not horrible, but scale to a large user base, and it becomes impracticable.
Since this benchmark was a couple of years out of date, I decided to re-benchmark it using the latest Prado version 3.1.1r2290. This benchmark is run in Windows Vista on a dual core Intel Centrino with 3GB of RAM. Using the same application, the load time was on average .5 seconds (ranging between .48 and .53). Compare this with the FugitiveThought home page load time of .02 seconds (without caching), and we see a massive discrepancy in speeds.
With Prado, the index.php file that handles the loading of the framework and instantiation of the application has a run time of .085 seconds on average (between .08 and .10 seconds). This means that even before we get the application itself, Prado takes up more time than a directly written page. While these times can be brushed over by the proper use of caching, this only applies to some pages. Often times, the rich, interactive applications that you would be using Prado and its components for will not be cachable.