Catalyst 15.5 For Linux Brings Some Performance Improvements
Written by Michael Larabel in Display Drivers on 15 June 2015. Page 1 of 3. 24 Comments

Earlier this month Catalyst 15.5 was released for Linux as the first official Linux graphics driver update since last December when Catalyst 14.12 was released (sans the special fglrx driver packaged by Canonical for Ubuntu 15.04). As discussed by users in our forums and elsewhere, Catalyst 15.5 does offer better performance for certain OpenGL workloads compared to the earlier driver, but the gains aren't universal.

My test results are coming a bit late due to being tied up with the other tests done earlier this month and Phoromatic/PTS work, but Catalyst 15.5 is indeed a good Linux driver release for some Steam Linux gamers. In this article I ran some comparative tests between Catalyst 14.12 and 15.5 on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. The graphics card used for this comparison was the AMD Radeon R9 290. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS was used for testing in order to maintain compatibility with Catalyst 14.12 due to Ubuntu 15.04 needing the newer driver for kernel/xorg-server compatibility.

The only change during testing was swapping out the 14.12 and 15.5 drivers from the same system. Via the Phoronix Test Suite a variety of OpenGL demos/games were run that were standalone as well as through Steam. On the following page are the results.


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