1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Benchmarks Of AMD's Newest Gallium3D Graphics Driver

Michael Larabel

Published on 22 November 2010
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 4 of 4 - 163 Comments

The Gallium3D driver on the ATI Radeon HD 5770 graphics card would lock-up when running World of Padman, but it played fine on the Radeon HD 4870. With the Radeon HD 4870, the frame-rate under the Gallium3D driver was slightly higher than with the classic default, but here the Catalyst driver was more than six times as fast.

The Gallium3D driver did not provide any decisive advantages over the classic Mesa driver with the Smokin Guns' game, which is yet another title powered by the ioquake3 engine. The Catalyst driver had frame-rates more than six times as fast as the open-source ATI drivers that struggled to produce playable frame-rates at higher resolutions.

It was just in July that we reported on the R600/700 Gallium3D driver being able to run glxgears after some shader compiler shortcuts were taken to get things going after the R600g driver was merged to Mesa's mainline code-base in May. It is incredible to see that in just the past couple of months the driver has went from not being able to run any proper OpenGL applications to now outperforming the classic Mesa R600 driver in most cases and is at a near parity with the classic driver. The only areas where we hit issues were with the Gallium3D driver with ATI Radeon HD 5000 series hardware not running a few of the games, but the Radeon HD 4000 series support was spot on, as is the case too for the Radeon HD 2000/3000 generations. These problems will hopefully be addressed in the near term.

The performance though of these open-source ATI drivers is still years behind that of the Catalyst driver, but at least there is open-source support and for these less demanding games, it is able to produce a playable experience. With the Gallium3D-based drivers there are also other interesting possibilities that emerge with state trackers, XvMC video playback via shaders, etc. It will also be exciting if the Radeon HD 6000 series open-source acceleration support is built upon the success of this R600g driver. The Gallium3D driver performance will also improve once the latest color tiling and page-flipping patches have been merged, which should happen soon. Another article is planned at this time looking at the Radeon page-flipping performance as it may bring sizable performance boosts.

Based upon our experience with this Gallium3D driver, it would not surprise us if this too replaces its classic Mesa driver alternative with either the Mesa 7.10 or Mesa 7.11 releases.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. The Power Consumption & Efficiency Of Open-Source GPU Drivers
  2. AMD R600g/RadeonSI Performance On Linux 3.16 With Mesa 10.3-devel
  3. Intel Pentium G3258 On Linux
  4. SilverStone Precision PS10
Latest Linux Articles
  1. Nouveau vs. Radeon vs. Intel Tests On Linux 3.16, Mesa 10.3-devel
  2. KVM Benchmarks On Ubuntu 14.10
  3. X.Org Server 1.16 Officially Released With Terrific Features
  4. Ubuntu With Linux 3.16 Smashes OS X 10.9.4 On The MacBook Air
Latest Linux News
  1. Debian 8.0 Jessie Is Settling For Linux 3.16
  2. Meson: A Next-Gen Build System Showing Promise
  3. Linux 3.16-rc7 Calms Things Down For The Linux 3.16 Kernel
  4. Open-Source AMD Users Report Hawaii GPU Acceleration Is Working
  5. Linus Torvalds On GCC 4.9: Pure & Utter Crap
  6. Cauldron 2014: GCC & LLVM Will Look To Collaborate More
  7. GCC Receives ACM Programming Languages Software Award
  8. KDE 4.14 Beta 3 Released
  9. A New Video Has Us Real Excited About The New UT For Linux
  10. CoreOS Experiences Its First Stable Release
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. ASRock AM1H-ITX: One Of The Best AM1 Mini-ITX Motherboards
  2. Debian + radeonsi
  3. Open-source drivers on ATI R7 260X
  4. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  5. Table test
  6. How To Setup Radeon DPM On Ubuntu Linux
  7. New build, first Linux PC, what could go wrong? ;)
  8. AMD "Hawaii" Open-Source GPU Acceleration Still Not Working Right