Skylake Desktop Graphics Test Results

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Chris

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So we're doing some basic testing of skylake now... read post below for details.

Chris

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Our initial results are interesting. It appears that there is 3D acceleration with Skylake on the desktop system we've built using only 100% free software, but it's performance is less than that of older Intel chips. I'll update this when I know more. We're presuming this is because of the proprietary bits left out in relation to the scheduler.

Further testing revealed our initial results were steering us in the wrong direction. There appears to be no difference in performance between including the non-free bits and not including the non-free bits. Our conclusion of a performance difference was partly wrong. The older chips appear to be outperforming the Skylake chips for some reason. This might be due to lack of full support for Skylake with the latest kernels or the need for a newer version of X than what we have installed.

We also tested one other thing. Suspend to ram. We were not able to suspend with or without the non-free pieces. So... support is probably not all there yet. That or the board we're using has other issues.

OK- that's probably all the testing we'll be doing for now until we have a laptop with Skylake.

What we don't know still is what impact it might have on power. It could still be that we all end up with very short battery lifes.

andermetalsh
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Can you try it with Parabola GNU/Linux or the JXself's kernel repo?

https://jxself.org/linux-libre/

Maybe not having an upgraded X server would be the reason of the bad performance.

Chris

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We tried it with jxself's kernel on Trisquel 7. I don't know if Parabola GNU/Linux-libre has a newer version of X, but it might be something worth trying. Bob however thinks it probably won't matter- or make a difference in the performance anyway.

andermetalsh
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Maybe the Xorg driver for Intel could matter a bit, also, MESA GL functions.

JadedCtrl
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Parabola has newer kernels and a newer version of X.

lembas
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Just in case you don't know, Trisquel has also newer X available. ;)

https://trisquel.info/en/wiki/installing-latest-backported-kernel-and-xserver

davidnotcoulthard
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Note that Skylake's ix-6xxxK's graphics are worse than the ix-5xxxC graphics (the "C" was used in Broadwell for a reason). (Of course this doesn't go for haswell, etc)

Skylake laptops will probably get better graphics than Broadwell, so yeah that'll be interesting.

Jodiendo
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davidnotcoulthard

Skylake is the codename for the Intel® processor microarchitecture that is the successor to the Broadwell microarchitecture.

http://ark.intel.com/products/codename/37572/Skylake

Intel's New Skylake Processors: What You Need To Know
http://gizmodo.com/intels-new-skylake-processors-what-you-need-to-know-1728020921

I still love my old Intel Core i5-3570K Quad-Core Processor 3.4 GHz 4 Core LGA 1155 -

davidnotcoulthard
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Doesn't change what I said though (Broadwell was so late that we got Haswell-E instead and by the time Broadwell could be launched Skylake was looming which probably had to do with Intel sticking the Iris 6200 into it which is better than Skylake's desktop iGPU)...

Lightmoon

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Hi!

Chris,

Do you know anything more about Skylake in Trisquel?
Do you recommend buying a processor Skylake or with Haswell?

Thanks!

Jodiendo
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Lightmoon

For laptops

Compare both processors.

I rather buy a laptop that uses a Broadwell chip that is equal or even better than Haswell chip for its ability to stay cool,battery life, etc etc.

Yes, I prefer a desktop for gaming anytime, but a lot of games are playable that are using broadwell chips.

compare both specs

http://ark.intel.com/compare/80343,85212

reviews
http://www.pcworld.com/article/2940489/the-truth-about-intels-broadwell-vs-haswell-cpu.html

I hope you make your decision based on your needs and purpose.
What people care about most is the battery life, graphic performance, drive size, memory.

Enjoy

vita_cell
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Joined: 07/19/2015

For desktop computer, you can get much better GPU that any Intel. And today you can buy Nvidia Kepler cheaply. Nouveau with Kepler works like with blob (in performance)(you must to switch pstate manually with command).

davidnotcoulthard
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Do all Kepler cards really work now?

vita_cell
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This is still experimental. When I took gtx650 and later gtx770, I was not able to reclock with pstate because it is a experimental feature. karolherbs told me that this problem was trivial.

With help of genius "karolherbs" from nouveau irc channel, we could reclock both GPU (with same fix/patch), karolherbs patched "nouveau.ko" and I compiled it with jxself's kernel 4.3. He patched PCIe 3.0 support too, but no difference for me, my board supports 3.0 but not my CPU (i7-2600). Here nothing more to fix with Kepler GPUs, cuz it is already runs near blob, not 100%, but almost.

I tested with much libre games. And sorry, I tested too with some steam games, like CS:GO (and more non 2d games, just for test the performance and stability).

I tested with some benchmarks too, not only glxgears.

The bad thing is, that you must powering on pstates with commands, and it is still impossible step from lowest pstate directly to the highest, but yes, you can step from highest to lowest one.

I asked to karolherbs if he will release these fixes in the future nouveau drivers, and he answered yes.

I don't know more details, I don't know when.

I don't know, but theorically, all Kepler card will work. I can not answer you cuz I only tested 2 GPUs. Same fix for gtx650 worked with gtx770. But minimum, you need 4.3 kernel.

Chris

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The integrated Broadwell CPUs in small desktops are fine. This is not to say all small systems that have integrated Broadwell CPUs are OK. There are I'm sure systems with problems out there unrelated to the CPU with many of them. Straight off the bat I can say many of the Intel ones have integrated wifi now which are dependent on proprietary firmware and you can't replace the chip.

That said I'd stay away from Skylake and Broadwell socketed desktop CPUs for now. Haswell is well supported (even though not all boards are necessarily supported/well supported) and I'd stick with it for the time being. There are problems with both Broadwell and Skylake socketed desktop CPUs. Broadwell has stability issues and bugs in the CPUs apparently. With Skylake it just isn't supported yet- at least without patches, etc. Not entirely sure how well it works either or if everything is available to build to make it work fully. Hopefully Intel figures out the issues with the Broadwell socketed desktop CPUs sooner than later. It might be better to skip Broadwell on the desktop and go straight to Skylake. Hard to tell for sure as Skylake is not yet supported. I'm not sure what kernels and versions of X will have good support for either CPUs and/or the solutions for fixing the issues with Broadwell will be. If it's some sort of microcode update it might be better to just skip it as these are non-free.