AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX / ASUS ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage On Linux
With an AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX Zen 3 processor and Radeon RX 6800M graphics, the ASUS ROG Strix G15 laptop may be promising for those wanting high performance and graphics backed by AMD's much enjoyed open-source Linux GPU driver stack. Plus this ASUS ROG Strix G15 (G513QY) is one of the first two "AMD Advantage" laptops. But when it comes to using it on Linux, it's not without some struggles before being able to enjoy the compelling performance.
The ASUS ROG Strix G15 AMD Advantage laptop I've been testing so far the past week features the AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX processor, Radeon RX 6800M discrete graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 15.6-inch 1080p 300Hz display. This laptop commands the $1549~1650 USD price point at the moment and has seen broader US retail availability from Internet retailers in recent weeks.
The AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX features eight Zen 3 cores / sixteen threads, a 3.3GHz base clock speed, 4.6GHz boost clock, 16MB L3 cache, and a default TDP of 45 Watts. The Ryzen 9 5900HX does feature Radeon Vega graphics with eight graphics cores, which was working fine under Linux as well although this laptop does have the much more powerful Radeon RX 6800M graphics that can be switched to via PRIME.
The Radeon RX 6800M RDNA2 mobile GPU features 40 compute units, 2560 stream processors, 96MB Infinity Cache, and a game frequency of 2300MHz. The Radeon RX 6800M graphics do work on Linux with the "Navy Flounder" support on recent Linux kernel versions and Mesa.
From a hardware perspective, the ASUS ROG Strix G15 is very interesting for a high performance laptop in 2021 with a focus on gaming. But when it comes to the Linux support at the moment it's not exactly desirable. The ROG Strix G15 can work under Linux if moving to a very recent kernel but otherwise is less than desirable. Here are those details.