AMD Radeon R9 290: Linux 4.0 vs. Linux 4.1 Git

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 6 May 2015 at 01:44 PM EDT. 13 Comments
Now that the Linux 4.1 kernel is starting to stabilize, I just started some Radeon DRM open-source graphics tests from this new kernel. So far I did some preliminary tests with the AMD Radeon R9 290 graphics card.

The Radeon DRM driver updates for Linux 4.1 have DisplayPort MST handling (though disabled by default), new VCE packet support, CSC output support, and other changes. While there aren't any explicit performance improvements mentioned, I'm running AMD (followed by Intel and Nouveau) tests as usual in looking for any unexpected performance improvements or regressions that have been seen on numerous occasions in the past. There's also other DRM changes in this next kernel.
Linux 4.1 Radeon Tests

When looking at the Radeon R9 290 performance though between Linux 4.0 stable and Linux 4.1 Git from today, there doesn't seem to be any measurable difference for our common OpenGL Linux benchmarks.
Linux 4.1 Radeon Tests

There are some slight changes, though nothing super significant seen thus far... You can view this preliminary Linux 4.1 Radeon graphics test data via this result file.

While there might not be any groundbreaking AMD Radeon performance improvements kernel-side with Linux 4.1, there are many new Linux 4.1 features.
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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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