For this article today are just some reference benchmarks from the public SteamOS 1.0 Beta x86_64 build from Friday when tested on seven different NVIDIA graphics cards. These graphics cards included the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, GeForce GTX 650, GeForce GTX 680, GeForce GTX 760, GeForce GTX 770, GeForce GTX TITAN, and GeForce GTX 780 Ti.
Back from my Valve visit in early 2012 when I first reported exclusively on Valve's Linux client console/OS plans, Gabe's distaste for Windows 8, etc.
The cross-distribution comparison and other data will be out in the next day or two and then when I get back to the United States in January I will have more fresh testing and hopefully by then Valve will be interested in official Intel and AMD Radeon SteamOS benchmarks. These next articles will be much more meaningful than these reference results being shared today that just show how well each of the NVIDIA GPUs are running from the SteamOS platform for various OpenGL games and other Linux benchmarks. Pardon that this first SteamOS benchmark article isn't the most ideal due to limited time for testing and single-handedly doing all of the testing and the writing of hundreds of Linux articles per month on Phoronix.
Knowing in April of last year about Valve's Linux console and distribution plans, and just how huge this would be (and is proving to be) for Linux, Valve's Linux engineers were already being delivered with beers.
SteamOS enforces vsync by default so that had to be manually disabled during testing. Fortunately, Valve's open nature concerning SteamOS makes it easy to do when dropping out of Steam Big Picture Mode. From dropping to the GNOME Shell, it's also easy to add in the conventional Debian Wheezy package repositories for obtaining the necessary dependencies for running the Phoronix Test Suite to conduct automated and fully reproducible tests on SteamOS.
If you have the Phoronix Test Suite installed on your SteamOS installation and have a network connection for access to OpenBenchmarking.org, it's as easy as running phoronix-test-suite benchmark 1312148-SO-STEAMOS1009 to see how your own system compares to this Core i7 4770K Haswell system with the assortment of NVIDIA GPUs. This automates the entire process from test download, local installation, execution, and side-by-side results analysis on our open-source benchmarking platform. You also don't necessarily need to be in SteamOS but you can run your own comparison against this published configuration and all the results by using the same command on any other Linux, OS X, Windows, or BSD platform.