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Old 26th December 2017
Prevet Prevet is offline
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Default To get a new video card or not?

My OpenBSD computer runs fine, even movies run at the correct speed. The only problem I am having is an SDL2 program won't go above 15 FPS. So I was thinking perhaps I need to get a video card to make SDL2 work right.

According to the official website the best video card that is supported is the Northern Islands/Radeon 6000 series.

https://www.openbsd.org/amd64.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radeon_HD_6000_Series

These cards were released in 2010-2011. There aren't many new ones left and if you do find one and its a nice one, they charge quite a bit more than they did when they were first released.

So I was wondering if it's worth spending the extra bucks on a new card. If OpenBSD is to get support for the newer video cards "soon", perhaps I should just get a second hand card and hope it will last until newer card support comes in.

ATM I am looking at cards in the 6850 - 6970 range. So what do you think? Should I spend up big on a new card to last me a long time, or get a burned out junker? Would a 2GB video card even solve my slow SDL2 problem?
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Old 26th December 2017
e1-531g e1-531g is offline
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Does this SDL2 program can be installed from ports?
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Old 26th December 2017
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Are you sure your graphics hardware is the limiting factor?

On my elderly Thinkpad X220 with Intel HD 3000 graphics, I'm able to sustain an SDL2 framerate greater than 60fps, as tested with this tutorial.

(I needed to install sdl2-image and sdl2-ttf, and build with $ g++ -w -L/usr/local/lib/ -lSDL2 -lSDL2_image -lSDL2_ttf -L/usr/X11R6/lib -I/usr/local/include/SDL2 -o test 24_calculating_frame_rate.cpp)

Edited to add: oh, yes, you have a 6-core Haswell processor, NVIDIA graphics, and you're using VESA, which limits your framerate.

Last edited by jggimi; 26th December 2017 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 26th December 2017
e1-531g e1-531g is offline
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Quote:
ATM I am looking at cards in the 6850 - 6970 range. So what do you think? Should I spend up big on a new card to last me a long time, or get a burned out junker?
You are using software rendering (CPU) rather than GPU. It is no wonder that it is slow.
We don't know how resource-hungry your SDL2-based program is.
If it is just some simple program, any GPU from 2011 era which is supported by OpenBSD drivers, even the budget ones, should do. If it would be some simple SDL2-based program there is no need for mid-high-end and high-end GPU. Just something with decent graphics drivers.
You can also use other OS for this particular app, if you are not use it often.
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Old 26th December 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jggimi View Post
(I needed to install sdl2-image and sdl2-ttf, and build with $ g++ -w -L/usr/local/lib/ -lSDL2 -lSDL2_image -lSDL2_ttf -L/usr/X11R6/lib -I/usr/local/include/SDL2 -o test 24_calculating_frame_rate.cpp)
Any reason you're using gcc-4.2.1 instead of clang?

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Originally Posted by jggimi View Post
Edited to add: oh, yes, you have a 6-core Haswell processor, NVIDIA graphics, and you're using VESA, which limits your framerate.
You should use your CPU's Intel graphics if you can.
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Old 26th December 2017
Prevet Prevet is offline
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This CPU has no integrated GPU. I figured why pay for that when I was buying a video card? Oh well.

I was trying out a demo for a 2D rouguelike library, which has some additional visual effects. So it is as simple as it gets when it comes to games. What is strange is video goes really well on this machine, as long as it uses mpv, yet when mpv is not active it is terrible.

So does anyone know if the OpenBSD devs plan to support the higher Radeon cards? If they aren't interested in that kind of thing, I was thinking I should get a new card that will last me 5-10 years, as I want to use this computer for a very long time.

Edit
Wow. The cards I was interested in are gone. More than $700 CDN and someone bought both. Second hand they go for about $100 USD or less. Perhaps there is a collectors market for new old cards.

Last edited by Prevet; 26th December 2017 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 26th December 2017
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Quote:
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Any reason you're using gcc-4.2.1 instead of clang?
Not really, other than personal familiarity.
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Old 26th December 2017
e1-531g e1-531g is offline
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Second hand they go for about $100 USD or less. Perhaps there is a collectors market for new old cards.
Problem with used consumer grade AMD GPUs is that they were designed for consumer workloads, but some of them were used by alternative cryptocurrency miners 24h/7days in a week, but this started especially with AMD's GCN-based GPU, I think.
If I were you, I would experiment/buy some HD [5,6]000-era used low-end GPU. If you don't do anything GPU hungry anything with decent GPU drivers should do.
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Last edited by e1-531g; 26th December 2017 at 10:42 PM.
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