If you are planning to upgrade your graphics card in a Linux system this holiday season, here are some fresh benchmarks of several different AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards with various Linux gaming tests under Ubuntu. The AMD tests were done both with the latest RadeonSI Gallium3D stack as well as the AMDGPU-PRO hybrid driver.
Anyone who read any number of my reviews from a few years ago, when I interned here at Phoronix, should know that I have been a fan of AMD and their open source efforts for a very long time. I remember the years of trying to get Catalyst to work under Arch or Fedora, usually only to have it blow up in my face. I remember the struggle holding back kernel and X server updates, hoping that none of those updates contained security fixes that were pertinent to me.
As some more exciting benchmarks to carry out this US holiday week, here are benchmarks of all major Mesa releases from Mesa 11.0 from mid 2015 through the latest Mesa 13.1-dev code as of this week. Additionally, the latest AMDGPU-PRO numbers are provided too for easy comparison of how the open-source AMD GCN 3D driver performance has evolved over the past year. It's a huge difference!
With Croteam recently having released an updated Talos Principle with better Vulkan performance and the NVIDIA 375.20 and AMDGPU-PRO 16.40 both having come out recently, here is a fresh OpenGL and Vulkan graphics API performance comparison when using Valve's Dota 2 and The Talos Principle, both of which games on Linux offer both graphics API renderers.
Now having my initial Intel Kaby Lake Core i5-7200U MSI Cubi 2 benchmarks with Ubuntu 16.10 out of the way, this second article is focusing upon the HD Graphics 620 Kaby Lake performance with this latest stable Ubuntu release as well as when trying out Linux 4.9 and Mesa 13.1-dev.
For those more interested in Linux GPU performance for CUDA/OpenCL GPGPU computing than Linux gaming, this article is for you with a fresh round of results across my available GeForce Kepler/Maxwell/Pascal cards using the latest NVIDIA 375.10 binary driver paired with CUDA 8.0 on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Linux.
Mesa 13.0 was released today as what is likely the most significant release to this 3D graphics driver/library implementation ever! Mesa 13 is huge for open-source driver uses particularly with Intel, Radeon, and GeForce hardware driver improvements. During development this release was known as Mesa 12.1
Last week marked the release of the AMDGPU-PRO 16.40 driver as AMD's first hybrid driver since the 16.30 driver series over the summer that rolled out Polaris GPU support. With this first AMDGPU-PRO update in a few months, here are some fresh benchmarks comparing the performance to the latest open-source driver code.
It's been a while since last running any major Linux graphics tests with Intel Haswell era hardware, but in preparing for a big Linux 3.x/4.x kernel comparison with a Core i7 Haswell, I ran some fresh graphics benchmarks with OpenGL and Vulkan.
Now that the RADV Radeon Vulkan driver has landed in Mesa Git and Linux 4.9-rc1 is out, I figured it was time for some fresh benchmarks of the Radeon Vulkan driver against the RadeonSI Gallium3D OpenGL driver. Here is the first of that new data.
It's been a while since last delivering any open-source NVIDIA (Nouveau) Gallium3D driver benchmarks but for your viewing pleasure this Friday are some fresh Kepler and Maxwell test results for this reverse-engineered NVIDIA Linux driver code against the proprietary NVIDIA driver in various OpenGL test cases.
On Thursday the RADV open-source Radeon Vulkan driver was merged into mainline Mesa and I provided bleeding-edge RADV vs. AMDGPU-PRO benchmark results for these two independent AMD Linux Vulkan driver implementations, plus comparison results to the OpenGL drivers in the same games. For those that have been wondering how the NVIDIA proprietary Vulkan driver compares to AMD's two Vulkan driver options, here are some fresh benchmark results.
Today the RADV Radeon Vulkan driver is landing in mainline Mesa and just hit the Git code minutes ago. Merging the RADV driver came up just over the past few weeks in time for next month's Mesa stable release while this community-based driver was developed over the summer by David Airlie and Bas Nieuwenhuizen. This "unofficial" Radeon Vulkan open-source driver is now becoming part of the Mesa code-base with it being able to support the few Vulkan Linux games but isn't yet a fully conformant driver. Here are fresh benchmarks of the RADV driver compared to the RadeonSI OpenGL driver and benchmarks compared to AMD's hybrid closed-source AMDGPU-PRO driver on several different graphics cards.
With the forthcoming Linux 4.9 kernel there is experimental AMDGPU Southern Islands support so that original AMD GCN 1.0 GPUs can optionally work with the newer AMDGPU DRM driver rather than the mature Radeon DRM driver. In this article are tests of some AMD graphics cards from GCN 1.0/1.1 era comparing the performance impact of switching the Radeon/AMDGPU kernel driver with this DRM-Next code for Linux 4.9.
While Linux 4.9 will not officially open for development until next week, the DRM-Next code is ready to roll with all major feature work having been committed by the different open-source Direct Rendering Manager drivers. In this article is some preliminary testing of this DRM-Next code as of 29 September when testing various AMD GPUs with the Radeon and AMDGPU DRM drivers.
With word coming out last week that the RADV open-source Vulkan driver can now render Dota 2 correctly, I've been running some tests the past few days of this RADV Vulkan driver compared to AMD's official (but currently closed-source) Vulkan driver bundled with the AMDGPU-PRO Vulkan driver.
Yesterday I posted some benchmarks showing how the AMDGPU / R9 Fury performance has jumped up in the past few months just since the April release of Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. For those wondering how the open-source AMD OpenGL performance has evolved over the longer term, I took a Radeon R9 270X graphics card and re-did tests going back to Ubuntu 15.04 for looking at the RadeonSI Gallium3D performance for the past year and a half.
I haven't run any Nouveau driver benchmarks recently for looking at the open-source NVIDIA Linux performance since there hasn't been too much progress, particularly when it comes to re-clocking of the desktop GPUs for delivering better performance. However, with all the testing I've been doing on the Radeon side with Linux 4.8 and Mesa 12.1-dev Git, I decided to do a comparison with a few NVIDIA GeForce GPUs under this latest open-source driver stack.
For those wondering how AMD's hybrid "AMDGPU-PRO" Linux driver stack compares to the latest pure open-source driver stack of the AMDGPU kernel driver and RadeonSI Gallium3D driver, here are side-by-side results for the Radeon RX 460, RX 470, and RX 480 Polaris hardware as well as the R9 Fury (Fiji) graphics card.
Last week I published an 18-way GPU Linux comparison featuring the new Radeon RX 460 and RX 470 graphics cards along with other AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce GPUs. The Radeon tests were done using the very latest open-source Linux driver stack while in this article are similar benchmarks done but using the AMDGPU-PRO hybrid driver stack.
With the Linux 4.8 kernel coming later this year one of the main end-user additions to the AMDGPU kernel driver is GPU overclocking support via OverDrive. This is the first time AMD GPU overclocking is being offered via their open-source Linux driver and so I decided to try it out with the AMD Radeon RX 480 using this experimental DRM-Next code.
While it's coming late, the huge Mesa 12.0 release is now official! Mesa 12.0 is easily one of the biggest updates to this important open-source user-space OpenGL driver stack in quite some time and will offer much better support and features especially for Intel, Radeon, and NVIDIA open-source Linux desktop users/gamers.
Following last week's AMDGPU-PRO 16.20.3 "Beta 2" driver release of AMD's new hybrid driver stack for Linux that makes use of the AMDGPU open-source kernel DRM driver with the closed-source OpenGL driver derived from Catalyst / Radeon Software, I set out to do a fresh open vs. closed-source driver comparison. For the Radeon R9 285, R9 290, and R9 Fury, I compared the performance of this new AMDGPU-PRO driver against Mesa 11.3-devel Git and Linux 4.6 for the latest open-source driver stack.
This past week I showed how Intel Broadwell graphics are much faster with Mesa 11.3 but this new Mesa version doesn't do much for Haswell. Similar to Broadwell, Mesa 11.3 is a big win if you are on Intel's latest-generation Skylake hardware.
Not only is there now OpenGL 4.2 support for Intel's Mesa driver but also as part of the massive Mesa 11.3 release in development there are OpenGL performance improvements too, at least for newer Broadwell hardware.
Yesterday I published some Radeon DRM-Next performance tests for the Radeon DRM code queued up for the Linux 4.7 kernel merge window. Today I'm testing the DRM-Next-4.7 code for AMDGPU for looking at the performance improvements coming to this newer AMD DRM driver with the next Linux kernel cycle. The DRM-Next-4.7 performance was compared to Linux 4.6 in this article for a Tonga and Fiji graphics card.
With the AMDGPU and Radeon changes all settled down for what's proposed for Linux 4.7, this weekend I'm benchmarking both of these open-source AMD Linux Direct Rendering Manager drivers. First up is the Radeon DRM driver with various OpenGL benchmarks in conjunction with Mesa 11.3-devel.
Intel is brewing a makeover of their graphics driver stack through a large restructuring and consolidating initiative that will be formally announced in the coming weeks.
For some end-of-month benchmarks and while having a number of graphics cards out prior to being let down by Tomb Raider's Linux benchmark, here is a fresh round of OpenGL tests while using the newest Mesa 11.3-devel code on RadeonSI with AMDGPU/Radeon DRM from Ubuntu 16.04 and then compared to various Kepler/Maxwell graphics cards with the newest NVIDIA Linux driver.
Last week I published benchmarks showing Nouveau's "boost" patches offering much performance potential compared to the current state of the open-source NVIDIA Linux graphics driver but generally still not enough performance to compete with NVIDIA's proprietary Linux graphics driver. I've since carried out some fresh open-source AMD Linux results for reference to see how the NVIDIA vs. AMD GPU open-source speeds are comparing.
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