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Decent Budget Graphics Card with Proprietary Driver Support

linux gaming game graphics card budget proprietary driver support

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#1 Gerowen

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 01:54

I'm running Ubuntu 13.10 64 bit on my HP Pavilion P6803W desktop PC. After Ubuntu 13.04 I believe, with the upgrade to the newer version of X11, my integrated ATI Radeon HD 4200 is no longer supported by the proprietary drivers package from AMD. I could downgrade to Debian 6 or a really old version of Ubuntu, but that won't get me anywhere when security updates stop for them, so I'd like to just get a decent budget graphics card that has proprietary driver support.  I like to play Steam games on Ubuntu, but the open source drivers do very poorly with this graphics card. I tried playing Portal, and at 640x480 with all the settings on Low, I was still only getting about 20 fps.  Some 3-D games, like the original Half Life and Team Fortress Classic, run just fine, but that's about as good as you're going to get on these open source drivers.
 
My motherboard has a single PCI Express X16 expansion slot that I could fit a graphics card into. I'm currently running an AMD Athlon X2 220 dual core @ 2.8 Ghz with 4 GB of RAM. I'm not planning on trying to run anything terribly brand new, but I'd like to be able to at least play some 3-D games that have something other than flat color textures in full screen mode.
 
I'm not normally somebody who follows the latest and greatest in the world of graphics cards, so I can read specs all day long and understand technically what they mean, but I don't really know how that would equate to game performance on Linux, and as long as it works well and has proprietary drivers for Ubuntu, I'm game.
 
If anybody could help me out by offering suggestions of a good budget video card that could let me do some modest 3-D gaming, I'd appreciate it. I'm willing to spend up to $100, but I'd like to keep it under $50 if possible.



#2 Mindovermaster

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 02:28

How much are you willing to spend? I have a XFX HD6870 that runs great on my Debian 7 desktop, with fglrx drivers. Maybe you can find something similar to that?



#3 Ambroos

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 02:47

If you want Linux support go nVidia, no doubt about that. Their drivers are so much better, especially for Valve stuff lately.

 

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814121639

 

For simple compositors and games this should be absolutely fine. I have a 330M in my laptop with about half the power of that card and have no issue playing Portal 2 or TF2 at 1600x900 near 60FPS (in Windows, but Linux shouldn't be too big a difference).

 

You could go down to the 620 or 610 but they're both a big performance hit for a $10-$20 price difference. 



#4 simplezz

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 19:14

It depends if you want Nvidia or AMD. I prefer AMD for three reasons. 1. They're cheaper, 2. The open source drivers are far far better, and 3. They produce less heat / use less power. Although the Nvidia proprietary drivers tend to be of a higher quality. You could try something like these:

http://www.amazon.co...keywords=HD7750

 

http://www.amazon.co...ords=nvidia 640