Oooold thread. So let's see what changed on AMD's side.
People were telling me that the OSS drivers will be up to par with the "real" drivers soon, and that I should wait instead of buying a GTX. Didn't happen.
So, on to a GTX 780 now (don't normally buy highest end cards, but I got an insane deal on it.) Maybe in another 2 years AMD's drivers will be ready and offer high performance for the old cards. For the newly R9 ones, maybe in a decade or so. All I can say is that the GTX 560 Ti has served me well in the last two years and allowed me to actually use my computer in a satisfactory manner. As I'm getting older, I feel like I have much more hair than what I would have had if I still was using the Radeon...
I don't know, they pretty much are on par for everything up to the SI generation. And that's already at about 50% performance and improving rapidly.
Originally Posted by RealNC
Ok, then maybe they will be on par in a year instead of two :D
Originally Posted by smitty3268
For r600, the OS Radeon driver is way better than FGLRX now, IMO. It has superior 2D performance, KMS support, VDPAU with more codec support than XVBA, etc. Fglrx has only two advantages: OpenGL support higher than 3.3, and sometimes higher 3D performance. The OpenGL support isn't really a deal breaker, since only a handful of games (like Metro LL) require it at this point, and most r600 cards can't run it acceptably anyway. The 3D performance advantage for Fglrx isn't really an advantage at all, since while it has technically higher fps sometimes, it suffers from stuttering and lag while the radeon driver is much more consistent.
Of course it's not perfect, and is slower than fglrx on Windows (according to benchmarks). Hopefully performance and capabilities keep on increasing at the pace we've seen recently.
Originally Posted by benmoran
I just wanted to add something:
- the UVD hardware decoding engine's frontend (XVBA) used by fglrx is practically useless because no player supports it (xbmc was the only one that did but they canned support for it since radeon/VDPAU appeared). There are no other video players that use it under Linux AFAIK.
- The OSS Radeon driver on the other hand adopted VDPAU (ironically developed by nvidia) as the frontend for the hardware's UVD decoding engine. Since VDPAU is a long supported method by mplayer, xbmc, xine and other players (vlc just added support for it in 2.1/2.2), you can use it out of the box. Also, it works with the flash plugin on a few sites (youtube and a few more) if set up properly in the /etc/adobe/mms.cfg file.
The video playback in fglrx is tearing unless you use opengl for presentation (and that too sometimes). You actually have to enable the "tear-free" option in the driver that increases video memory usage (it triple buffers everything) and sometimes lowers playback framerate.
- Also sometimes the tearing issue appears in games too - the driver's option isnt always respected (this goes for in-game settings too).
- The OSS driver vsyncs by default everything, its much more controllable (prefix the executable with "vblank_mode=1" or 0 to force enable or disable it or set the vblank_mode to 1 or 0 previously by other means).
As per the above, using fglrx you have an advantage in some 3D apps, mainly high end games (others like Source games run perfectly well on radeon, better than on fglrx) and disadvantage in many other areas.