I think it's heartening how much improvement there's been.
On the other hand, basing feature support on a process name is likely something that you can never really live down.
I've been using fglrx with a 7770 for several months now and only have 4 complaints, none dealbreakers.
1. Tearing, but only in movies (It's not noticeable in the games I play, whereas it is really noticeable in movies). I also understand this is related to x11 architecture more than GPU/driver and that Wayland will finally make it so that it can be truely fixed?
2. Antialiasing. I'm not sure that it works at all in some applications. (Main reason I want GPU comparisons and reviews to include still screenshots that are 'diffed', or at least layered, so to speak.)
3. Video decode accel -- just make the stupid thing use VDPAU or VAAPI out of the box.
4. Fan control.
Also, I must be lucky as I haven't had any crazy issues with Wine, though I also mostly use it for stuff from GOG.
If anyones intends using a mid to top of range graphics card, primarily on linux, and with a closed 'blob' driver then just go Nvidia and save yourself the pain.
I made the mistake of going AMD with a 4870 in 2008. Partly on the back of this article. http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...nhd_4870&num=9
The catlyst driver turned out to be very very poor. I gave up after a few driver revisions and sold the card on ebay.
Back with Nvidia since and I can't think of any issues other than a short wait for the driver to catch up with a bleeding edge kernel from time to time.
just dont say such stupid stuff. you absolutate speed and feature set, thats retarded. there is more than this 2 categories out there.
So if you are a developer of a opengl 4.0 game or something yes you will stick this other drivers that do not work for you at all on this list. but thats not the only point how you can judge a driver.
They are more way more stable than the closed ones and they are free, and they are fast enough for 3d desktop. So for all people who not want to play under linux because there are anyway no high grafics opensource games, and even this source-engin2 games are that crappy 10 year old grafics quality that it will even run with the intel-igps...
so yes for commercial game developers you can maybe if you make really high quality (graphics wise) games blacklist this drivers, but for the 99% of the other people you cant.
well ill fix 2 mistakes here
1.) xonotic for example run always over 60fps in ultra settings using AA[MLAA] in my 4850 using r600g git [sure fglrx can give 200 but is hard to give a fuck about it since my brain can't process 200fps images nor my monitor can handle 200fps either and im playing for fun not for benchs], sure is not crysis but native linux games run perfectly fine unless you have an igp class gpu.
1.a.) regnumonline MMORPG native linux 64[commercial] runs perfectly fine [60+ constant fps]in r600g even on uber crowded fortresses sieges and with everything in ultra[except some bits that need GL3.2 profile]
1.b.) unigine heaven hit almost 20fps at 1024x768 windowed and look damn cool
1.c.) Lineage II Tauti + r600g + wine 1.5.12 == pure pleasure [never lag, 0 crashes, perfect render, HDR and the cool thing are enable, sieges never below 30fps, play wonderfully with kwin and tiling/tabing <--fglrx drop masssive KP]
1.Conclusion) is perfectly possible to play many games in r600g and even when you get less max FPS you get a perfect experience. sure battlefield 3 or crysis in wine using r600g can be very slow for now but for those you can try fglrx
2.) opengl4.X is just an opengl revision that include additional features and hardware support not a complete isolated new version like DirectX, so you can perfectly support opengl3.X and detect in realtime if the gpu support opengl4.x to use a codepath that exploit those additional features like tessalation for example, in a game make no sense to do it any other way [why loose customers when you can properly support many hardware generations??], so if a game support GL4 but your gpu is not DX11 class the game just stick with what you gpu supports[unigine/wine/almost any decent game i know of do this if you want an example].
so any proper game developer can write his games using windows or blobs and test it in any plataform including mesa[the code will just stick to the GL 3.0 codepath(luckily 3.3 for mesa 10)]
i just wanted to make this corrections to improve your good post so it get clear that r600g is an option in many scenarios and is goddamm rock solid stable[that for me is more important than just FPS] and 2D with Kwin is basically all instant[at least on my systems] i freaking love it
The open source radeon and nouveau gallium drivers, as well as the open source Intel drivers should also qualify for this blacklist. The Intel drivers for Linux has worse OpenGL support than the Windows driver, especially GLSL. But it handles old style OpenGL fine and reasonable stability. Fglrx has very good features on paper, but generally fail to deliver. Fglrx has general GLSL and OpenCL stability issues, and has a semi-featured configuration utility. Its like a product which is almost ready for shipping, with a lot of potential but missing the final touch to make it a finished product. Compared to Intel (Linux), Fglrx has more support and does GLSL better, but the end user experience would depend on usage. But for modern OpenGL, Fglrx is still way better than Intel (Linux). The Radeon and Nouveau gallium drivers has still way worse OpenGL support than Fglrx, and has a very variable stability from release to release.
This is just a suggestion, but it would be great if your reviews in the future could include more information regarding the frame rate and potential stuttering. Average frame rates is not everything, especially now as both Nvidia and AMD are adding boost which "only" improves the maximum frame rates which raises the average frame rate. And regarding stuttering, even the good Nvidia drivers does from time to time have a release with some X Server bugs which makes games lag, especially during a lot of IO events (e.g. mouse movement). An average frame measurement would not be able to detect these kinds of problems.
Don't say anything that you haven't tested yourself.
1) TeraOnline(Unreal3) doesn't play with Catalyst nor with R600 Driver, nor with HD4600 nor with HD6900 on WINE. Plays well with Nvidia Closed Drivers and GTX275 or GTX460, and i haven't tested Intel.
2) CSS(orange box) crashes with Catalyst after you enter a closed area like a house (stack overflow in graphics!!! if you believe it!!!). Plays well with Nvidia Closed Driver, Intel Open Driver, and R600 Driver!!!
3) PCSX2 emulator runs 30% faster with R600 Driver instead of Catalyst!!! wile it runs 200% faster with Nvidia Closed Driver. Core2DuoSSSE3@3ghz and HD4670 =Unplayable PCSX2, wile Nvidia 9600 and CPU@2.2ghz =Playable. I haven't tested Intel.
4) With Catalyst there is not a chance to bypass Flickering in 2D mode of a desktop, the Anti-flickering option destroys Video for good.
The only good equipment for Linux for now, is a SSE4.2+(7.5+Drystone) CPU (even a cheap one for 50box), and an Nvidia Cuda GPU (as newer as better, wile flops are less important, but important). If you are not a gamer then give your money to Intel and their Open Efforts.
I don't give a crap how much faster people tell me, or whatever feature is missing or, or how they swear up and down that they are not terrible or that it's the application's fault or whatever BS excuse they come up with... they are just miserable.
Out of all the possible driver and video card combinations a person may want to run out there..
open source intel
closed source nvidia
closed source ATI
open source nvidia
open source ATI..
ATI closed source driver is easily the WORST possible choice for people wanting to use GL graphics on Linux. The alternatives are just so much better that it's not even funny.
It's annoying because I really want to support AMD's open source efforts, but I want to build a gaming rig that actually works, without weird driver problems (except a few in OS X I'm prepared to deal with, given that I'm going with an asrock mainboard instead of gigabyte to save some money-- the BF Prodigy is mini-itx)..
Right now it looks like the 660Ti for me. I feel guilty, but.. yeah...