AMD GPU Driver In Linux 5.12 Gets RX 6000 Series OverDrive, FP16 For More Hardware

Written by Michael Larabel in Radeon on 8 January 2021 at 06:18 PM EST. 3 Comments
The first of several batches of feature updates to the AMDGPU kernel driver were sent in on Friday for anticipation of the Linux 5.12 kernel merge window that should be opening up in February while the stable Linux 5.12 debut will happen likely by/around May. With this initial pull does come some new features and improvements around the recent AMD graphics processor support additions.

Likely of most interest to users out of this initial set of AMDGPU driver changes queuing in DRM-Next is the OverDrive overclocking for the Radeon RX 6000 series. This was one of the features not initially present by the AMDGPU Linux driver but is now squared away and ready to go. As with existing OverDrive Linux support, it's exposed via sysfs for command-line based overclocking but could be implemented by those interested as a GUI control utility - just nothing officially from AMD.

Also significant with this pull request is FP16 pixel format support for DCE8-DCE11. That display core engine 8 through 11 series translates roughly to Kaveri APUs and Hawaii dGPUs up through Polaris hardware. This is useful for HDR display support and more precise color reproduction. It's overdue seeing the FP16 support on these older generation GPUs but has finally arrived.

Other AMDGPU changes ready for Linux 5.12 include reworked IH ring handling on Vega and Navi, reworked HDP handling also for Vega and Navi, software SMU updates for Van Gogh and Renoir, and other low-level code clean-ups and fixes. A "MALL Stutter" feature has also been enabled as a power optimization when the display is idle.

The initial list of AMDGPU patches for Linux 5.12 via this pull request. Expect more AMDGPU changes to queue up in the next few weeks.
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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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