Benchmarking The Latest AMD Radeon & NVIDIA GeForce Graphics Cards On Ubuntu Linux

Written by Michael Larabel in Graphics Cards on 2 June 2015 at 12:09 PM EDT.

Last year for the 10th Phoronix birthday I did a 60+ GPU comparison with the open-source drivers and a 30-way graphics card comparison with the binary AMD/NVIDIA Linux drivers. With Phoronix turning eleven this week, I did another large graphics card comparison under Linux... The results today aren't as large as last year, but represent most of the latest-generation AMD and NVIDIA hardware while running Ubuntu 15.04. With more games coming to Linux, there's new titles covered in this year's massive comparison including Civilization: Beyond Earth, Metro 2033 Redux, and many others.

Today we're looking at the performance of the latest proprietary graphics drivers on the Linux desktop at the time of testing: NVIDIA 352.09 Beta and the Catalyst 15.4 Beta as packaged for Ubuntu Vivid -- fglrx 15.20.2 / OpenGL 4.4.13374. Later in the week should be the open-source Intel/AMD/NVIDIA Linux graphics driver results for celebrating the Phoronix birthday. For this article there were 17 graphics cards tested all supported by these latest proprietary drivers -- the graphics cards used were those that were available and in my possession at the time of testing, which sways to the NVIDIA side. There's basically every major NVIDIA graphics card covered given they're frequently sending out samples to Phoronix for Linux testing while in the past few years on the AMD side they have barely sent out any GPUs for Linux testing... All of the AMD GCN GPUs tested in this article were retail GPUs I purchased. Anyhow, the graphics cards able to be tested for this article were:

- Sapphire AMD Radeon HD 6870 1024MB (900/1050MHz)
- Sapphire AMD Radeon HD 6950 2048MB (800/1250MHz)
- ASUS AMD Radeon HD 7850 1024MB (860/1200MHz)
- XFX AMD Radeon HD 7950 3072MB (900/1375MHz)
- XFX AMD Radeon R9 285 2048MB (918/1375MHz)
- XFX AMD Radeon R9 290 4096MB (947/1250MHz)
- MSI NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 1024MB (1084/2500MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 2048MB (1006/3004MHz)
- eVGA NVIDIA GeForce GT 740 1024MB (1084/2500MHz)
- eVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 1024MB (1019/2505MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti 2048MB (1019/2700MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 2048MB (980/3004MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3072MB (875/3500MHz)
- eVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 2048MB (1277/3505MHz)
- eVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 4096MB (1163/3505MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 4096MB (1126/3505MHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN X 12288MB (1001/3505MHz)

The native Linux OpenGL tests used in this article included BioShock Infinite, Civilization: Beyond Earth, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Metro 2033 Redux, Metro: Last Light Redux, Unigine Valley, Xonotic, and GpuTest/Furmark. For some OpenCL compute coverage is also LuxMark 3.0. In this article is the raw performance results for the tested AMD and NVIDIA hardware while in a later article this week we're looking at the "most efficient Linux gaming graphics card" right now when analyzing the power consumption, GPU thermal data, and performance-per-Watt information in a separate and more concentrated article.

Ubuntu 15.04 x86_64 was running on the test system with the Linux 3.19 kernel and X.Org Server 1.17.1. All of the OpenGL/OpenCL benchmarks were carried out in a fully-automated and reproducible manner using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite automated benchmarking software.

AMD NVIDIA Linux Graphics 11 Tests

If you appreciate these large Linux hardware comparisons and wish to see Phoronix have many more of them going into its eleventh year, please consider subscribing to Phoronix Premium or making a PayPal tip. You can stay with the latest Linux hardware benchmarking results via Phoronix on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

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