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Author Topic: ATI or Nvidia video card?  (Read 4685 times)
srynas
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« on: June 04, 2007, 01:51:52 pm »

Which manufacturer makes the video card the LINUX community likes best?  ATI or Nvidia. 

My daughter is interested in using LINUX. I will need to buy a video card for her computer.  In a test, the on-board video chip failed to work with Ubantu.  It did work with the Nvidia and ATI video cards that we have on other computers.  Nevertheless, I am wondering which brand would be more LINUX friendly.
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Joe1962
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« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2007, 02:26:11 pm »

Before the Nvidia crowd comes in... Grin, this makes interesting reading:
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=735&num=1
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easuter
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« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2007, 03:03:48 pm »

Before the Nvidia crowd comes in... Grin, this makes interesting reading:
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=735&num=1


Yes, and then this puts the cherry on the cake  Grin Tongue:

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=731&num=1

EDIT:

Sorry srynas, I didn't answer your question.
Unless your doughter is a hardcore-fanatical gamer or needs to use applications that require very rich graphical rendering, then anything you get from either Nvidia or ATi should work just fine.
Though Nvidia cards have better compositing support to allow true transparency for 3D desktop eye-candy...

My personal preference is Nvidia, since I've never had a problem with any Nvidia cards on Linux, even the legacy ones.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2007, 03:13:21 pm by easuter » Logged

Dweeberkitty
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« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2007, 04:07:41 pm »

I have always had the best luck with Nvidia. Personally, I think they deliver the best drivers and like easuter says, they do seem do have better compositing support. I've had problems with ATI cards in the past but never have I had a single issue with Nvidia. Although ATI appears to be finally catching up with the Linux game, Nvidia has had the best Linux support the longest.
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bigpaws
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« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2007, 04:08:38 pm »

My response was almost 3 pages long. Here is the cut
down version.

I use what works. ATI in the past has not worked for me.
Both ATI and NVIDIA have driver problems. NVIDIA recognized
Linux years ago and still does. ATI is finally waking up.

My money goes to NVIDIA.

Bigpaws

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srynas
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« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2007, 04:28:47 pm »

Thanks for the quick response.  Looks like I'll get the Nvidia card.
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srynas
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« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2007, 02:58:54 pm »

Well, just after posting, I saw an article where ATI has been caught disabling some of the features on its video cards. Electronic Frontier Foundation
reports: "June 05, 2007
ATI Downgrades Its Tuners and its Customers

There's nothing more fun than upgrading to a new version of your software. You get new bugfixes, new features, and, of course, the ever-fascinating release notes. That's where owners of ATI video cards will learn that the latest update to ATI's Catalyst drivers now offers"improved TV quality and Broadcast Flag support which enables full US terrestrial DTV support".

It's a little unclear from that README whether the new support is for a new, hardware revision of ATI's Theater 650 digital TV tuner, or simply a new software implementation of the digital TV copy control for current owners of the Theater 650. However you look at it, though, "broadcast flag support" is hardly an upgrade.

Prior to such support, you could be confident that you could use these cards for their given purpose: to record whatever you want off the air, whenever you want, in whatever format you want. Now, ATI, recently purchased by AMD, is announcing support for equipment's right to take that power away from you, and substitute a crippled subset of their tuner's capabilities whenever a broadcaster commands it.

But this isn't just an unfeature: it's an unnecessary unfeature. You can have full terrestial HD support without the Broadcast Flag - mainly because thousands of concerned citizens fought hard for that right. AMD must surely have noticed that the Broadcast Flag proposal has been dead for over two years, ever since the courts threw it out as FCC overreach. Thanks in part to your letters and calls, no politician has managed to sneak it into law since. The future analog switchoff on February 17th, 2009 is now closer in time to us than the last time the Broadcast Flag was considered mandatory. There is no longer any serious argument for implementing it.

Indeed, just as there's no real reason for Microsoft to implement CGMS-A, the unused and unloved analog TV equivalent: but it does.

Why, we cannot surmise, given that every time those analog copycontrols are accidentally activated over the air, the whole world howls with anger at their Windows media centers. We imagine that the same will happen if ever an accidental blip of an ATSC broadcast flag signal enters one of ATI's digital tuners.

Since when did upgrades include more potential bugs, and fewer features for customers? And when will tech companies upgrade their expectations of standing up to Hollywood's demands, instead of constantly attempting to downgrade ours?
Posted by Danny O'Brien
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srynas
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« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2007, 04:44:04 am »

My quest to install VL on an old Pentium75 computer came to abrupt end.  We took a lighting hit, which fried the computer and the surge protector.  The computer was 14 years old and still running well.  The other four computers in our house were also damaged (despite having UPSs).  Well that's it for now.
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lagagnon
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« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2007, 06:33:39 am »

Yikes, sorry to hear that. At least the Pentium75 machine was no great loss  Wink
I once took a lightning strike about 500m away which fried my PCMCIA card, but nothing worse than that.
So much for surge protectors eh? Are we being sold a bill of goods with those things?
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"As people become more intelligent they care less for preachers and more for teachers". Robert G. Ingersoll
GrannyGeek
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« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2007, 04:47:27 pm »

So much for surge protectors eh? Are we being sold a bill of goods with those things?

A surge protector or UPS can't protect you from a direct or near-direct hit.

All my computers are plugged into UPSes. Nevertheless, as soon as I hear thunder, I turn off and unplug everything, including the line from the wall jack to the DSL modem. If I'm leaving the house and there's the slightest chance of a thunderstorm, everything gets unplugged before I leave.

A UPS is a much better choice than a surge protector. For one thing, a UPS gives you time for an orderly shutdown in case of a power failure. For another, a good UPS conditions the power, preventing damage from voltage spikes and sags. I also know when a power failure happens in the middle of the night because the UPSes in my home office create quite a racket as they beep madly.<g>
--GrannyGeek
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nightflier
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« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2007, 06:30:52 pm »

Granny has a good point on UPS's. A good (expensive) one is "on-line", and double as a line conditioner and surge protector. The cheap "off-line" ones just sit there and watch the power go by, and jumps in only to prevent loss of power.

Back to video cards, I used ATI's for many years under another OS. The Radeons performed well and had good picture quality. Using them under Linux without 3D was not a problem for me, but I did buy some nVidia cards to experiment with. After about a year of back and forth, I have settled on nVidia. The installer is not as fancy as ATI's, but I have had much better luck with it. Performance also seems better with the GeForce products.

It is my opinion that right now nVidia has the edge.
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srynas
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« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2007, 11:39:42 am »

The new UPS that I have, have a plug for the Ethernet plugs.  I could have minimized my damage by having used the UPS Ethernet plugs.  Lesson learned, use the UPS Ethernet plugs to protect the Ethernet cabling and the attached equipment from voltage spikes. 

The lighting electrical surge was also carried by the Ethernet cable and fried the onboard Ethernet cards. I installed new Ethernet cards.  We are having a technician come over and check the integrity of the Ethernet cabling. So, far the cabling is still working, but then we don't have all our computers back online.
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exeterdad
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« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2007, 04:33:18 pm »

As far as video cards go, I didn't used to have a preference.  I don't game.  But I've had the best luck with Nvidia using Linux.

We had a close lightning strike last year.  It turned 4 computers into boat anchors.  And two TV's, and a garage door opener.  Hate that!
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easuter
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« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2007, 06:10:28 am »

Quote from: GrannyGeek
All my computers are plugged into UPSes. Nevertheless, as soon as I hear thunder, I turn off and unplug everything, including the line from the wall jack to the DSL modem. If I'm leaving the house and there's the slightest chance of a thunderstorm, everything gets unplugged before I leave.

Aye! Same thing here.
I also have that same reaction if I see the guys from the power company coming to do anything in my street...
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Vanger
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« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2007, 02:08:05 am »

nVidia.

It's funny, that ATi/AMD was always strict to the specifications. But their drivers for both Windows and Linux sucks.
Driver developers seems to be better at nVidia.

So get some 8500/8600.
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