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25-Way Open-Source Linux Graphics Card Comparison

Michael Larabel

Published on 25 January 2014
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 6 of 6 - 22 Comments

The Xonotic benchmarking show the RadeonSI Gallium3D performance can still be better optimized for the HD 7000 series hardware and newer.

Well, there are the results from our 25-way graphics processor comparison when using the latest Intel, AMD, and NVIDIA open-source GPU drivers on Linux. The findings come down to:

- The Intel "Haswell" HD Graphics on Linux continue to be comparable usually to a mid-range discrete AMD/Radeon graphics card (see our other Intel HD Graphics articles on Phoronix for plenty more details) though with the latest driver there are some regressions while in other tests the Haswell performance was rather strange. Fresh Intel Linux benchmarks will be coming shortly from the Linux 3.14 kernel to see if the situation is cleared up. Intel HD Graphics regardless are certainly very sufficient on Linux for desktop users, light gamers, and other tasks not requiring massive GPU horsepower.

- NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards on the open-source driver continue to struggle in large part due to the lack of power management / re-clocking support to dynamically drive up the GPU's clock frequencies to their ratings. This yields very sluggish Linux gaming performance and there's a whole lot of other issues. Hopefully NVIDIA will make a bigger investment into the Nouveau community in 2014.

- The open-source Radeon Linux graphics support is now in great shape now that the RadeonSI Gallium3D is starting to stabilize, Dynamic Power Management is enabled by default, and there's been a host of other optimizations and improvements made. The performance, OpenGL feature set, and other features still don't meet Catalyst, but the open-source driver is definitely moving in the right direction and pleasing many open-source fans.

Stay tuned for our large closed-source Linux graphics card driver comparison in the next week. If you appreciate all of this exclusive (and timely) Linux hardware testing, reviews, and driver analysis that are constantly being done at Phoronix please subscribe to Phoronix Premium or consider a PayPal tip. You can also follow us on Facebook (http://facebook.com/phoronix), Twitter, and Google+.

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 .
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