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Speeding up my particle system

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I made a particle system using textured quads (point sprites couldn''t get big enough), and it''s very slow. I go from 125 fps to about 60 when about 30 particles are close to the camera, and that really needs to improve if possible. Is there any way to batch my quads or do something else like that instead of rendering them one at a time? Since I have to scale and translate each one separately for the billboarding to work, I didn''t see how I could do this. Any other general tips for speeding it up would be appreciated as well.

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The problem might be that you are close to the particles,
as your fill rate will be killed by overdraw.

Your drawing pixels over pixels over pixels over pixels

to get an idea of the performace of your particle system,
try very small particles - see how many you can have on screen -
spread out.... I expect you can have 1000''s.... but as soon as you make them bigger and they begin to overdaw each other- performace will die.

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