I am currently running Kubuntu (12.04) on my machine with the following hardware:
CPU: Intel 940XM
GPU: ATI 5850M
Currently I am running the open source (gallium?) ati graphics drivers which are sufficient for desktop effects and regular usage. Additionally I would like to play games (and finally get rid of windows on my machine). The open source drivers are too slow (and do not support features like texture compression, which are required for some games).
So I switched to the ati propriety drivers (fglrx) and wanted to see how things look with the closed source drivers. While the games run now, I have problems with the 2D performance. Firefox (and chrome) seem to render things slower (e.g. scrolling becomes a lot slower) and my docky is choppy (its not very slow, but its not as smooth as the open source drivers). I have also tried installing the drivers form the amd website (12.3) but these seem to have the same problem. Running gtkperf also showed a substantial difference. While the opensource drivers ran completed the tests at 9 seconds, the closed source drivers needed on average 15 seconds.
Have I misconfigured something? Is there a way to tweak the settings in such a way that the 2d performance of the binary drivers becomes acceptable? Or is this simply the state of the current ati binary drivers?