Valve's ACO Helps The Radeon RX 5600 XT Compete With NVIDIA's RTX 2060
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Gaming on 25 January 2020 at 02:42 PM EST. 37 Comments
As shown yesterday the new video BIOS of the Radeon RX 5600 XT paired with the corrected SMC firmware on Linux yields impressive performance improvements that -- similar to Windows -- allows the card to compete better with NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 2060. For Linux users, activating the Valve-funded ACO compiler back-end for the Radeon "RADV" Vulkan driver helps turn up the competition even more.

I'll have out complete RADV + ACO benchmarks shortly, but here are some initial findings so far when doing a third run of the RX 5600 XT that in addition to having the revised vBIOS in working order on Linux is with RADV_PERFTEST=aco set for enabling the ACO compiler back-end with RADV rather than the default AMDGPU LLVM back-end.

Tests were with Mesa 20.0 + Linux 5.5. Given the short turnaround time, ACO on the RX 5600 XT is being looked at while the other Radeon cards tested are at their default (non-ACO) configuration up against NVIDIA's latest driver.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider with the revised vBIOS and enabling ACO now allowed the RX 5600 XT to come out just ahead of the GeForce RTX 2060! This also put the RX 5600 XT faster than the RX 5700, which was running without ACO and would have seen better results too on ACO, as we continue to show in our ACO vs. AMDGPU LLVM benchmarks.

Enabling ACO on the RX 5600 XT with Strange Brigade at medium quality settings boosted the FPS by 5%.

Or compared to the RX 5600 XT results with the original vBIOS, the video BIOS upgrade and switching to Valve ACO has boosted the RX 5600 XT performance by 16% for Strange Brigade with the ultra quality settings.

More ACO tests coming up shortly with the Mesa 20.0 feature freeze happening next week making for interesting tests on the roadmap.
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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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