Time Taken for Images to load

I am facing the following issues. I run an education portal in India www.gyancentral.com for Indian audience. I use joomla 1.5.23 use hostgator dedicated hosting and Max CDN.

Issue 1: There is huge difference in results if I check with city as Dallas - http://www.webpagetest.org/result/110721_4G_13RQ1/

vs city as New Delhi - http://www.webpagetest.org/result/110721_WZ_13RQS/

There is a difference of 3 times

Issue 2: Images I have loads of editorial content which require images which look good (hence high resolution) i have used Smushit but then the size still remains fairly large and event the loading time - How can i reduce this? while still maintaining load times

Issue 3 - First time to byte - I have tried everything possible but the TTFB does not reduce - Is it a core joomla issue?

Issue 4 - SWF file - I have one SWF file at the bottom which is taking 3 seconds to load. How can i decrease that.

Issue 5 - I use 9 font files on the site - Now each font file is close to 5 MB and are currently being rendered from the site - If i use google API for calling the font files will that have any effect

Issue 6 - Social share icons would consume upto 3 seconds in load time. I have disabled them as of now but I want to use them is there a way i can reduce their load times.

Issue 1 - make sure you test with the same browser. The Dulles test was with IE 8 but New Delhi was IE7. Here is a test from Hyderabad on IE8 - http://www.webpagetest.org/result/110721_ES_13W8N/ (much closer to the Dulles times but still longer because MaxCDN’s closest POP is in Amsterdam)

Issue 2 - Smushit only does lossless compression. Most of your bigger images are photos that are jpeg’s. You can try saving them at lower quality levels (while still keeping them looking good) to see if you can make the files any smaller. Any photos that are currently png’s should be changed to jpeg’s (like this one: http://gyancentralpullzoneone.acmehousingindia.netdna-cdn.com/images/stories/educational_revamp.png )

Issue 3 - Pretty much. Joomla has some built-in page caching that should help (not sure if it is there in 1.5 but check the admin panel for it). Otherwise faster database performance is your only chance.

Issue 4 - I don’t see the swf taking 3 seconds in any of the waterfalls. Looking at the bandwidth line graph at the bottom of the waterfall, it looks like you are bandwidth constrained so reducing the bytes of other content that downloads at the same time is your best bet (the photo above as well as this png which should be 8-bit or jpeg - http://gyancentralpullzoneone.acmehousingindia.netdna-cdn.com/images/stories/tmpphpTjPsxG.png )

Issue 5 - Do you need all 9 fonts? I’d take a hard look at that first. Google’s API’s let you deliver subsets of the fonts so that would certainly help.

Issue 6 - Can you move any of them to onload? Are they at least loading asynchronously?