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OpenBenchmarking.org

Intel Ironlake OpenGL Performance On Mesa 9.1

Mesa

Published on 26 February 2013 05:45 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa
Comment On This Article

Last weekend there was a fair amount of chatter about Intel not planning to bring some OpenGL 3.0 functionality to Ironlake. The hardware supports some of GL3, but the Intel developers are more concerned about newer generations of Intel graphics hardware plus other driver features. How though is the Intel Ironlake (Clarkdale/Arrandale) performance with Mesa 9.1? Here's some benchmarks.

In the weeks leading up to the Mesa 9.1 release I published OpenGL benchmarks of Intel Sandy Bridge and Intel Ivy Bridge hardware. The open-source OpenGL driver for these two latest generations of Intel hardware were in good shape on this latest Mesa release. Made curious after the recent GL3 controversy (plus having an Arrandale system out as part of the extensive Linux x86 vs. ARM benchmarking), I ran some OpenGL tests on the Intel Core i3 330M "Arrandale" nettop.

The Core i3 330M system with its "Gen5" Ironlake graphics were tested with Ubuntu 13.04 while using the latest Git branches of Mesa as of today: Mesa 9.1 git-7a161a, Mesa 9.0.3 git-c864835, and Mesa 8.0.5 git-a8ff9a4. The full system hardware/software details can be found in full on OpenBenchmarking.org.

No other variables changed aside from the Mesa / i965 DRI driver version in between testing, which happened with the Unity desktop and Linux 3.8 kernel on an updated Ubuntu 13.04 development snapshot.

There were notable performance boosts from Mesa 8.0 to Mesa 9.0, but from Mesa 9.0 to 9.1 there isn't much of a difference to see... Much of the new OpenGL extension enablement is also only for Sandy Bridge and newer.

With OpenArena 0.8.8 there is at least a very minor performance boost for the Core i3 330M system with Mesa 9.1, but the performance even at a mere 1280 x 1024 resolution is still far from playable on Linux.

Reaction results are mixed.

There isn't anything exciting to see out of Mesa 9.1 this time around with Xonotic.

Overall, the Ironlake (Clarkdale/Arrandale CPU) graphics performance hasn't evolved much with Mesa 9.1.

Find more data in the 1302263-FO-INTELIRON54 result file.

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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