Radeon Driver Power Management Has Room For Improvement
Next up is a look at the AMD/ATI GPU driver power management when running the OpenArena game at 1920 x 1080.
When looking at the frame-rates within this open-source OpenGL game, the Catalyst driver is obviously much faster than the open-source Radeon driver with Gallium3D component. Between the different open-source driver configurations, dynamic power management did a good job at being dynamic and timely so that the frame-rate was minimally affected by this power management option compared to the Radeon driver's default state.
Putting the Radeon HD 5750 into its low power state caused the frame-rate to be 27% of the default speed on the Radeon driver or just 10% the speed of the Catalyst driver. The Radeon HD 4870 low power state was certainly borked with it just being the same as the mid power profile. The Radeon HD 4550 in its low power state was running at just 13 FPS, or 20% the speed of the open-source driver with default power management.
OpenArena was unstable on the Radeon HD 2400PRO with Catalyst driver and this GPU continued to be unstable when altering its power management state on the open-source stack.