It's unfair because it's incomplete. It sure does show a performance delta, but it doesnt show everything that should be... Whether it was meant to be a quick test or not, incomplete is still incomplete. It doesnt show at least 2 other solutions that may or may not be better for you.
'Fairness' and completeness are two different issues. It is true that the benchmarks didn't test all the possible options, but within what they tested there isn't anything unfair--well, the AMD card is apparently more powerful. So, two similar systems, two cards, two drivers, which one performs better? Probably most people expected these results, but the benchmark puts numbers to it: now you know for sure and in quantitative terms. Who could say before reading this article that radeon already pulls off 1/4 to 1/2 the frame rate achieved by Nvidia, and in a three times cheaper machine?
That Phoronix couldn't test Fglrx because there wasn't support for the newest X server is a priceless anecdote, and one that reflects splendidly what an owner of one of these cards is expected to experience. On the other side of things, the OSS driver works with the newest bits as advertised. Although it can't really compete yet, it does work and its performance is within one order of magnitude of that of the optimised binary from the competition. I'm surprised I am the one seeing these results under a good light for radeon. Has the Freedom camp in Phoronix given up? That would make this place boring : D
People have been saying it's a crap article, but perhaps we should all give something more constructive?
The article did make clear that the results were from a test using ubuntu 10.04, and that the video drivers were not equally matched. There was even a note that the intel cards couldn't be tested. But apparently that was glazed over by most readers who only saw an "ion vs radeon" test - so perhaps the layout could be changed, or more emphasis made in certain areas to point some things out? Sometimes people see a bunch of text and don't really read it, but rather look at a pretty graphic, so less text in areas could mean more. Can anyone offer anything else?
Usually the 3d speed of ION does not interest anybody. The main purpose is to use vdpau as htpc, maybe using xbmc or something similar. I even tried to use vaapi with the latest prerelease fglrx drivers but not even that works yet. Why should somebody add an ati card when nvidia onboard would allow vdpau? That's the most stupid downgrade that i can think of! Even when the tests are repeated with fglrx they are useless.