This Low-End NVIDIA Card Has The Potential To Perform Competitively Using Nouveau

Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 7 February 2016 at 03:06 PM EST. 13 Comments
With yesterday's NVIDIA GeForce GT 710 Linux testing was just the start of our tests for this sub-$50 USD graphics card powered by a cut-down Kepler GPU. Yesterday's article just included some basic NVIDIA binary driver tests while today's article includes Nouveau performance figures.

The open-source Nouveau driver does indeed work with the GeForce GT 710... On an Ubuntu 15.10 box, the GT 710 lit up fine, albeit I ended up moving to Linux 4.5 and Mesa 11.2-devel for the best experience. The GT 710 hadn't regressed and was still working out on this newest open-source code.

For today's tests, I compared the performance of the GeForce GT 710 on the NVIDIA 361.18 proprietary driver against Nouveau with Linux 4.5 and Mesa 11.2-devel Git. On the open-source side I did two runs: one out-of-the-box and another when manually re-clocking the card to the highest performance state.
GeForce GT 710 NVIDIA Linux Drivers

In some tests, when manually re-clocking the GT 710 the open-source Nouveau driver performance was very close to NVIDIA's binary blob.
GeForce GT 710 NVIDIA Linux Drivers

In other tests, the performance was still well behind NVIDIA's proprietary driver.
GeForce GT 710 NVIDIA Linux Drivers

To see more of these open vs. closed-source driver benchmarks on the sub-$50 NVIDIA GeForce GT 710, see all of the data via this result file.
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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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