AMD suprassed NVIDIA in drivers last couple years?

Discussion in 'Videocards - AMD Radeon Drivers Section' started by Foonus, Sep 18, 2014.

  1. FunkyMike

    FunkyMike Master Guru

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    He has a switchable card.

    Most of his applications are stuck on Intel (browsers, media players etc) because he is on dynamic mode. (there is no fixed switching in these new devices)

    This is an AMD restriction.
     
  2. DummyPLUG

    DummyPLUG Member Guru

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    it just depends on what you are using, for example video acceleration on AMD is still very buggy when compare to nVidia,
     
  3. Espionage724

    Espionage724 Guest

    I can't speak for Intel/AMD laptops, but my AMD/AMD laptop is fine with muxless switching (fine as in not nearly as problematic as people claim). I don't get DX9 issues or crashing, and the slight overheating I do have is Acer's fault for their poor cooling solution.
     
  4. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    I had AIW 9000Pro that would stand for most complicated installation of drivers and most problematic. It was cake.
    And I miss things those GPUs could do. Like 3xAA which looked better than 4xAA and had lower impact on performance or Smartshaders & TrueForm.
     

  5. Omagana

    Omagana Ancient Guru

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    ^This is pretty much my opinion.

    You see a lot of claims that AMD drivers are inferior, yet that's never been my experience. I ran the 3870, 4870 and 5870 without issue.
     
  6. snip3r_3

    snip3r_3 Ancient Guru

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    I would say this year, AMD drivers are crap. The drivers since 14.4 are worthless in terms of fixes or improvements. DX9 bug is still there (anything CryEngine and a few others), the old black screen bug with DVI screen off, and the still missing Mantle recorder for Raptr. I don't have serious issues but its the small ones that add up to a nuisance.
    My roommate had a laptop with a switchable 6630M (with a physical switch) but the drivers are such a pain to update (and have issues), at least compared to the switchless 640M the other laptop has, which takes Intel and Nvidia driver packages directly.
    First time using AMD cards, and honestly speaking it isn't as bad as some people make it out to be, but in my personal opinion their drivers aren't nearly as robust or feature packed as Nvidia ones. While both parties are far from perfect my next card purchase will most likely be Nvidia barring a turnaround on the drivers and features side from AMD.
     
  7. millibyte

    millibyte Maha Guru

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    ^I'm kind of feeling the same way. I'm also still on the 14.4's since those have been rock solid for me and I don't play many new releases. I really like the cards that I have now and don't plan on upgrading at least for another year but if AMD doesn't implement some of the features that nvidia has in its latest cards (most notably the downsampling) and provided that nvidia cards are reasonably priced next generation, I'll likely be going green again too.
     
  8. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    ^^ idd, it's downsampling (DSR) on new GM204 that makes me most jelly

    I have 4GB VRAM that plenty of time just sits there unused.
    DSR is the simplest way to up the IQ of old games.
     
  9. Wagnard

    Wagnard Ancient Guru

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    Personally I wont switch back officially to AMD as I personally think they have too much problem with basics stuff that should work right.
    Example.

    -When power saving turns off the monitor, there is chances it wont turn on again.

    -Not working correctly with "pci link state power management"

    -(not a bug) UVD, I has always be a WTF in my head for locking the GPU clock to a lower than Full 3D speed when watching GPU Accelerated video.

    And personally, every time I reported them a bug with their "lovely" feedback form, the bug was either never fixed or took like a year.
    Just my 2 cents... from my own personal experience with ATI/AMD
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014
  10. typeAlpha

    typeAlpha Master Guru

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    Had problems with 14.x (can't remember which) where I would get random bluescreen with FireFox. Back on 13.8 and no problems at all and not had any problems at all either with previous drivers. 14.x have been utter crap for me though.

    Edit: My next card will likely be Nvidia just for a change but that will be a long way off, there's nothing coming out that warrants an upgrade in the foreseeable future.

    Edit2: Nvidia have much better OpenGL support if it matters to anyone.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014

  11. FunkyMike

    FunkyMike Master Guru

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    I never really had overheating problems and in most instances the end user or the OEM is to blame. However there have been laptop chips in the past that were renowned for overheating. There has been a recall by Nvidia for their mobile GPUs at one point.

    My personal experience with AMD is 2 fold.

    AMDs official drivers would put my laptop into a blackscreen during install. This went on for a few years until they (recently) fixed the bug. Naturally this is why I turned to modding.

    Other issues included (official drivers started giving me a black screen at the beginning of 12.x):

    No working brightness control
    Standby not working on AMD.

    Modded drivers in fixed switching (my natural switching method which is locked via BIOS because of 120Hz 3D integration and Eyefinity):

    They worked well but still included the standby issue and only a few versions within these years were able to obtain brightness control after hits and misses. (some users would say no versions had this working).

    AMD only recently took care of the blackscreen issue during install. End of 13.x.

    It didn't change the fact that the laptop would still start up on a blackscreen after a restart (needing a mod).

    14.4 took care of standby.

    14.4> started putting laptops into dynamic switching mode (even if locked to fixed) eliminating my blackscreen/standby/brightness control issues.

    It also eliminated my ability to make use of Eyefinity (which I am not bothered about) and 3D movies (...).

    Dynamic switching introduced me to issues largely related to having programs locked to Intel via the AMD driver (there is a list) without a chance of running these on the AMD GPU.

    3D playback cannot be done on Intel - all media players are locked to Intel by AMD.

    DX9 issues do exist for some but I have no personal experience as most of the stuff I play does not make use of it.
     
  12. Espionage724

    Espionage724 Guest

    That does sound pretty problematic, but I'm almost more inclined to put some blame on Intel there. Really not too sure what's so different between Intel/AMD, and AMD/AMD muxless setups. Could also even be possible the OEM messed up the implementation to some extent, but that would require feedback from more people probably.

    I haven't had any of that on my AMD/AMD laptop. If I tell programs to use my dGPU when I'm plugged in, they do (except things that are hard-locked to the iGPU, like Explorer and some media players).

    Manually setting programs to a certain GPU also worked fine back when I bothered to do so (some less-demanding games I played like osu! and Touhou I just kept on the iGPU).

    Even on Linux, specifying which GPU to use works alright. I will say it is harder to pull off with AMD's own proprietary driver though (there is no on-the-fly switching out-of-the-box, and even with pxpress, I haven't been able to see it occur). Open-source drivers with Prime work great though; I want a game to run on my iGPU, I just run it (since the iGPU is primary). If I want it on my dGPU, I specify DRI_PRIME=1. On an unrelated note, I heard Optimus is (or was) a nightmare in this regard on Linux.

    Most switchable graphics cases I hear with an AMD dGPU involve an Intel iGPU on Linux, and I don't particularly recall any isolated issues with such a setup, with open-source drivers. I heard it was a bit of effort to get AMD's proprietary driver working with such a setup however (but ideally Ubuntu's GPU Manager should now take care of this, on Ubuntu of course).

    I don't own Intel/AMD hardware nor have much experience with it, but generally speaking, it sounds like it "just works" far better on Linux with open-source drivers, compared to proprietary drivers on either Linux or Windows. So the issues could extend further than just AMD's driver.

    But on the Optimus note earlier (and based on feedback I've seen from other people), it would seem even Intel/NVIDIA setups aren't perfect either. Since Intel is the common-ground on both Optimus and Enduro setups, and the primary graphics accelerator in those setups... I'm leaning towards Intel being a large contributing factor to issues.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  13. GhostXL

    GhostXL Ancient Guru

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    Drivers "better" than Nvidia? No.

    Better than in the past? Yes.

    Nvidia has indeed brought the up-scaling feature to their cards/drivers. It works wonders, and without a hitch.

    So After switching back and forth to AMD/Nvidia every other generation, this is the first time in a while where I actually stuck with Nvidia for the next batch of cards.

    Running my GTX 980 at 1.5ghz core and 8ghz Memory. Not regretting it at all.

    Although to upscale to 5K, I will need SLI down the road.

    But to be honest, once AMD worked out the GCN issues and Xfire problems with their drivers, the HD 7970's I had were pretty awesome.
     
  14. FunkyMike

    FunkyMike Master Guru

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    Fairly problematic at first but once i modded the drivers they seemed to be rock solid in every other regard. (Fixed switching)

    AMD/AMD is a much easier tech since it doesn't have the same barriers for standby / brightness control / blackscreens (that are problematic on Intel/AMD - fixed switching) . Naturally I would assume AMD has no issues working with their own solutions : ) . One of my mates uses an AMD + AMD device and has no major issues.

    The autoselection that the AMD driver makes for either dGPU or iGPU is determined through an internal profiles list. You can have a look here for a list of apps that are perma iGPU locked: 14.6 X List

    You make a valid point about the Intel "side" having issues, this has less to do with the OEMs but more with AMD having had issues implementing a good working solution that binds the Intel with AMD via the drivers.

    During the "early switching tech" time period ATI/AMD used to have the majority market share for laptop GPU implementations in conjunction with Intel CPUs. ATI was also just recently bought up. Driver engineers were let go and AMD was restructuring. Fixed switching was the preferred solution during that time and worked well if configured properly.

    Nvidia also had issues prior to Optimus with their drivers being a mess.
    However Nvidia being the underdog went ahead and created rock solid Optimus (dynamic switching) drivers that managed to merge with the Intel drivers seamlessly and with no iGPU/dGPU application restrictions.
    They did this at much greater speed whilst AMD was still dipping its toes into Dynamic and riding the "fixed mode" wave.

    AMD on the other hand had many more issues with its Dynamic switching solution. This ranged from huge performance issues (famous NBR thread that made AMD act), to other issues such as no way of routing OpenGL to AMD. This was fixed gradually in some cases taking a year.

    Whilst I am sure that Intel / Nvidia setups are not perfect I have still observed their "muxless - passthrough" tech being superior in terms of speed and compression which can be noted when checking eGPU setups.
    Nvidia also doesn't rely on the same wonky dwords that make brightness/control/standby work as AMD does. This relates back to AMD's implementation of their tech.

    I do not recall the source for this but AMD and Nvidia both worked with Intel to implement their muxless tech. Nvidia just happened to have the better tech / drivers to make it happen from what I can tell.

    I cannot really comment on Linux since I have never tried switchable on it. The only thing that comes to mind is me checking into LVDS issues on switchable configurations. From what I recall there are several solutions to switch between cards on Linux that were developed by users/AMD.
     

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