Radeon HD 7000 Series Will Bring New 3D Driver
Phoronix: Radeon HD 7000 Series Will Bring New 3D Driver
There's another update to the recent AMD Driver Support State For Radeon HD 7000 Series, Trinity article. The Radeon HD 7000 series will in fact bring a new Gallium3D Linux driver...
This feels a bit scare for me, owning a Radeon 4850. How well will support for the "older" cards be maintained, etc etc? But since they haven't abandoned the R300 I guess there's not much to fear in the coming years. And eventually I think it's worth buying a new graphics card, even though it's a cheap-ass one with passive cooling, just to get a newer generation card. If I had a R300 today I would probably buy a $30 card since it will quadruple performance and at the same time allow me to use both Catalyst and FOSS drivers.
On another note: It's very interesting that the 48*0 series is still the best performing generation when running the FOSS drivers.
Gcn, vliw4, & vliw5
As far as I understand it, only the top-end 7900 chips are using the new GCN arcitecture, while the weaker parts will be using a mix of the VLIW4 arch introduced with Cayman and, curiously, the older VLIW5 arch as well.
High-end chips should have a completely new SIMD approach. This is the main reason there should be a new driver.
Originally Posted by Darkfire Fox
Slower chips will use the older VLIW4 architecture and Trinity chips should use VLIW4 architecture.
Just a reminder, current and GCN architectures are both SIMD -- it's just that current GPUs are VLIW SIMD while GCN is non-VLIW SIMD :
See slide 19
Maybe we need to introduce a new NPLIW architecture (Not Particularly Long Instruction Word) to avoid confusion
Any VLIW5 chips are likely just rebadged from older generations, and not new
The switch away from VLIW4 means that any shader compiler would be radically different, which is why i suspected they might start a new driver. All the compute features might impact that as well.
Does this new driver stack will be developed "internally" by AMD or in a "open" manner (I mean a git repo during the development). If I remember, r600g was mainly created by Red Hat guys?
I was under the impression that GCN was MIMD rather than SIMD. Is that not accurate?
Originally Posted by bridgman
It will all be public once we are able to release the initial code.