ATI Open vs. Closed-Source Performance
This past Friday we had delivered benchmarks comparing the performance of the open-source Radeon driver against the new closed-source fglrx driver from AMD. These benchmarks had just looked at the AIGLX performance when using Compiz on an Ubuntu 7.10 desktop. In all of the benchmarks except one, the fglrx driver had carried a staggering lead over the open-source competition. In addition to these Compiz benchmarks, on the same system we had also ran some additional benchmarks to see for gaming and 2D rendering how the two ATI Linux drivers compare.
The system once again was running Ubuntu 7.10 "Gutsy Gibbon" with the Linux 2.6.22 kernel and X server 1.3, but with these benchmarks, the Compiz effects were disabled during testing. The hardware included a PCI Express ATI Radeon X800XL 256MB graphics card, Intel Pentium D 820 (2.80GHz dual-core), 2GB of DDR3-1333 memory, and an ASUS P5E3 Deluxe (Intel X38) motherboard. We had used Enemy Territory and GtkPerf as our vehicle for benchmarking the two drivers, since both benchmarks are compatible with the current Radeon driver. The ATI driver used was fglrx 8.42.3.