'ati' video driver and older cards (no RadeonHD), a little question...

Faizan Kazi faizan.s.kazi at gmail.com
Sun Apr 26 07:14:27 UTC 2009

hey steve... did you install the ati proprietary driver already? and youre
saying it works fine?
(im a little surprised, i thought it wasnt ready yet, because they made a
lot of changes to jaunty)

I have a Mobility Radeon x1400 and am using the open source (default ubuntu)
drivers and its working great! the compiz benchmark gives me over 30 fps at
all times, usually ~120 when running regular desktop programs, over 80 fps
when watching a 1280 HD video, ~660 fps in glx gears. The strange thing is,
I get a LOT of flickering when running glxgears (just in its own window),
otherwise all desktop programs are fine, except sometimes in firefox there
is light flickering around the scroll bar (probably something to do with
compiz fusion and all the crazy effects ive enabled).

I would recomend an x1600 desktop card. its fairly powerful card, capable of
running most current games decently, so for desktop usage it won't be
outdated any time soon :)

have fun!

On Sun, Apr 26, 2009 at 7:34 AM, Steve Grace <sgrace at pobox.com> wrote:

> Vincent Trouilliez wrote:
> > I am using an nbidia card, for a few years now, running the proprietary
> > driver, by necessity (to get 3D). The problem I have been having since
> > day one, is that this driver makes DDC calls fail, meaning my monitor
> > can not be recognized, I have to work xorg.conf by hand. If I go to
> > System->Preferences->Screen Resolution, it doesn't list all the
> > resolutions the monitor can handle, and it offers silly refresh rates:
> > 51, 53, 55, 56, 61.. something like that, instead of 60/75/85 like it
> > should. This weeks I upgraded to Ubuntu 9.04, and the problem got
> > worse : the Gnome Display tool now just plain refused to start ! It
> > redirects me to the nvidia utility tool, which doesn't work (it fails
> > to read/parse xorg.conf). So this is all starting to get on mly
> > nerves ! ;-/
> > Seeing as there is no reason to believe that the situation will ever
> > improve, I am thinking of going back to an ATI card, since they have
> > the free 'ati' driver, which, if I remember my old Radeon 9250 I used to
> > own, worked perfectly, and let my monitor be detected, so the Gnome
> > tool offered the appropriate resolutions and refresh rates,
> > automatically. Sadly, although this driver was bug free and "just
> > works", 3D was so slow that I had to give up on it and move to Nvidia.
> > But I hear that recently the ati driver saw lots of work, and that 3D
> > performance has been much improved. So the ati driver and the cards it
> > supports, now appeal to me again.
> >
> > I looked at the ati driver projects page:
> >
> > http://www.x.org/wiki/radeon
> >
> > it says that for all the older card (prior to the modern 'HD' range of
> > cards), everything just works.
> > So I am thinking of buying one of these cards. My motherboard doesn't
> > have an AGP slot though, only PCI Express (1.0), so I guess I am
> > looking only at the more recent of the old cards, the Radeon 'X'
> > something.
> >
> > Questions:
> >
> > 1) out of the PCI Express X**** cards, do they all really work
> > perfectly, or are there any specific models that have little glitches
> > that don't look tidy ? Like flickering, artefact, anything the eye
> > could notice and that I don't want to see, or any other kind of
> > problems one would like to avoid, given the choice.
> > I also remember that the VGA output (what I am using) of the ATI cards,
> > was better than Nvidia. So if some ATI card is known to be better or
> > worse than others, in this regards, I am interested in knowing.
> > I am also looking for a fanless card, if that helps suggestions.
> >
> > 2) Could people confirm (or infirm, hopefully not), that using the
> > free 'ati' driver (not fglrx), the Gnome Display tool was able to offer
> > all the expected/appropriate resolutions and refresh rates that the
> > monitor supports, without having to fiddle manually with xorg.conf ?
> I'm using an X1650 card with the "ati" driver; it seems to work fine.
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