Intel, Radeon, Nouveau Preview On Linux 3.14 With Mesa 10.2 Git
Written by Michael Larabel in Display Drivers on 20 March 2014. Page 5 of 5. 4 Comments

Lastly we have Radeon and Nouveau benchmarks for Unigine's Heaven and Valley, which are more demanding OpenGL test-cases than the Tropics and Sanctuary results shown earlier in the article. It's only with Mesa 10.1 and newer that these more demanding GL3 tech demos are generally running well with Radeon/Nouveau Gallium3D.

There are no RadeonSI Gallium3D results for these last two tests due to LLVM register allocation issues with the AMD GPU LLVM back-end with the driver configuration shipped by xorg-edgers right now in their Ubuntu 14.04 PPA. Intel Haswell results weren't included due to having a very hard time keeping up in the Unigine Engine at this resolution for the newer demos.

For those that haven't been keeping up with the many other open-source Linux GPU driver benchmarks on Phoronix, this is overall a quick synopsis of where things stand for the open-source Linux drivers in early 2014... Intel Haswell graphics are decent and backed by a good open-source stack and there's lots of hope for Broadwell later in the year with regard to the hardware and their Linux drivers.

When it comes to open-source NVIDIA, the lack of re-clocking within the Nouveau driver is the number one limitation right now that is severely handicapping its performance. We can only hope reliable Nouveau re-clocking will land in the Linux 3.15~3.16 time-frame, but that has yet to be communicated by Nouveau developers. Meanwhile, if you don't mind using closed-source Linux drivers, the NVIDIA binary driver for Linux is the best; if you want some of those numbers, see the 30-way graphics card comparison on Ubuntu 14.04.

Lastly, for the all-around best open-source Linux GPU driver experience with maximum performance, there's the AMD Radeon hardware with the R600 and RadeonSI Gallium3D drivers. On the RadeonSI front there's still some bugs to be worked through with this driver for the Radeon HD 7000 series (GCN-based) graphics cards and newer, but overall it's quickly getting into shape and offering up compelling numbers against AMD's Catalyst driver.

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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 or contacted via

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