- Intel Core 2 Quad x64
- Ubuntu precise 12.04
- Dell OptiPlex 760
- nvidia graphics driver
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I also had compiz constantly taking around 10-12% CPU. I installed
sudo apt-get install compizconfig-settings-manager
launched CCSM and under the OpenGL unticked sync to vblank. Now compiz is only taking up 2-4% CPU.
This website also suggests setting Texture Filter to fast.
Had the same problem. Compiz constantly at around 40% (AMD CPU, ATI 58xx, 12.04). Then i followed the instructions in this answer and CPU utilization dropped below 10%. Hope it helps.