The Surprises When Testing A Radeon RX 470 With AMDGPU's DRM-Next Linux 4.11
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 22 February 2017 at 09:00 PM EST. 17 Comments
While DRM-Next hasn't even been submitted yet for the Linux 4.11 merge window, I ran some benchmarks today of an AMD Radeon RX 470 graphics card comparing Linux 4.10.0 to the current DRM-Next state.

Here were the tests run straight-away:

As you can see simply by the colors, the AMDGPU DRM-Next code queued for Linux 4.11 is faster than Linux 4.10 for this Radeon RX 470 system...

Though with many of the tests, the Linux 4.11 (DRM-Next) win was very minimal or even just a fraction of a frame per second faster, within a margin of error.

Most interesting though was:

Significantly better Deus Ex: Mankind Divided performance for the Radeon RX 470. This same system was used recently in RADV Mesa 17.1-dev vs. AMDGPU-PRO 16.60 Performance and back then Marek found it odd about the RX 470 performance being much lower than expected with RadeonSI on Linux 4.10. But at least now with Linux 4.11, the Radeon RX 470 performance for this game on this particular card seems to be performing better and where it should be -- like where the RX 480 has been on pre-4.11 kernels.

Additionally, Dota 2 with Vulkan seemed to be doing better on RADV when running atop DRM-Next:

So there were a few surprises at least with this Radeon RX 470 system.

I'll have more benchmarks of this latest kernel code as Linux 4.11 advances, including of other Radeon graphics cards to see if there are widespread improvements or I was just lucky with choosing this Radeon RX 470 system for testing today. You can dig through more of today's test data via this result file. The Radeon/AMDGPU changes queued in DRM-Next for this next kernel release were previously covered in our Linux 4.11 coverage thus far.
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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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