My distro is called Kanotix and it based on Debian. I am no direct Debian developer - also I use one Ubuntu kernel for my distro (with some small modifications). I want that things run, if they use a oss driver or not thats not important for me.
How long would you like to use GF2 MX? It's been almost 8 years and they didn't stoped to release new drivers for this hardware. I think that after 8 years your hardware is so old that it can wait to go for local museum.
Yeah and what about XvBA? Does ATI released documentation for XvBA for r600? I think not and that won't change any time soon. They can't even provide XvBA with closed drivers. It won't come along so nicely as you think.
NVIDIA on other side has got VDPAU for all hardware that supports it and NVIDIA in most released drivers fixes bugs with VDPAU.
I would anytime choose Ati. I think they have better and faster opengl performance with fglrx than with nvidia, and their latest release 9.4 kicks ass. I have had both vendors and I don't dislike nvidia. I think their driver is awesome and right now have more features than fglrx. BUT I would still choose Ati. Why?
Because with Ati I will within a year or so have good performance open source driver with my hd3650. I will have galium3d, kms and I can be sure my card always is supported with the latest X technologies. How can I know the development is heading that way so quick?
Because right now I am on Kubuntu Jaunty with super fast 2d acceleration and truly tearfree video with xv. And yes I can run hd movies without a lag WITH OSS drivers :P Taken the short time they ahve had since the docs have been released for r600, I am not at all nervous for it will be long before I will have 3d support. When basic 3D support is done, they will start on powermanagement and galium3d. Then we will see performance.
Thats why I would never spend any money on nvidia. Because I will get awsome oss drivers. And yes my 2D performance is way better than with my nvidia 7600 GT. And they haven't even optimised the 2d part of the driver yet.
Phoronix: Another Week, Another New NVIDIA Linux Driver
I'm not sure phoronix has gotten it yet, so let me state the obvious. Nvidia hasn't just taken a page from open source development, they stole the whole damn book except for actually being open source. Release early, release often, a proper beta/prerelease/release system and fairly detailed change logs from a user perspective on what to expect.
Honestly, I don't know of any other closed source software which works so tightly with the users to gather feedbacka and beta testing. Despite following phoronix I feel I got a better clue of what's going on in the nVidia drivers than with the AMD drivers, open or closed source. Trying to pretend that the troubles peophe have with the latest beta nVidia build is equally serious as problems with Catalyst's final releases is ridiculous.
Everybody that really wants open source drivers, not those that just signed an online petition for it along with their free pony and a unicorn, has known now for well over year that they should get an AMD card and get hacking on it. Tell me, how many are working on the AMD drivers? Outside AMD? From what I've gathered from reading here, out of the ten thousand signees there's not ten who'd actually contribute to any open source drivers.
Right now I got the feeling it's like GIMP vs Photoshop, one is open source and the other is better. Except that I'm paying about the same in both cases since I have to pay for the hardware. And most people aren't into paying the same and getting less, even for open source. Maybe if open source was the clean, stable driver for Linux and I'd have full binary performance when I dual boot to Windows. That'd do it for me, but we're not there yet.
If this will happen next year, you would choose ATI now or anytime rather than next year?
Because this year, and probably the next, you in any case will likely run binary drivers (at least if you play games). But after that the Ati cards have guaranteed up to date driver support... even if AMD/ATI would go out of business, because OSS drivers dont depend on them once the docs are out.
With Nvidia all you can do is cross your fingers and hope for the best. Right at this moment, Nvidia works well, but "ever in motion the future is".
Right now I got the feeling it's like GIMP vs Photoshop, one is open source and the other is better. Except that I'm paying about the same in both cases since I have to pay for the hardware.
Since PS cost $1000, that is pure BS. $1000 easily buys you a complete computer.
BTW you can only count the full cost of a computer as "cost of image manipulation" if that is the ONLY thing you do with your computer. And since you are posting here I'm 100% sure this doesnt apply even in your case. So can the nonsense not even you believe in.