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OpenGL vs Vulkan in Mad Max, re-tested

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Since Feral Interactive have fixed up the OpenGL renderer in the Mad Max [Steam] Beta, here are some fresh OpenGL vs Vulkan tests.

I already cleared up the issue before and included some manual testing, see here.

These new tests are re-done using their benchmark feature, which is unique to the Linux version. This should now give a much more accurate look at how OpenGL fares against Vulkan in some heavy areas of the game.

Also, Feral have now made public how they have worked around a Linux performance issue. You might remember my post about tuning your CPU performance governor for Vulkan games, well this is partly where that came from (as well as Serious Sam). Essentially, to prevent the CPU performance being reduced due to less CPU use with Vulkan, Feral are spinning their rendering thread while waiting for the GPU (see here).

Benchmarks
OpenGL Vulkan Mad Max - Camp - Hollow Point (redone)Antergos Linux, 1080p, i7 5960x, 980ti NormalHighVery High Vulkan 241OpenGL 225Vulkan 171OpenGL 148Vulkan 136OpenGL 121 241225171148136121 04998147196245 Average FPS

Here we have a performance difference of between (approx) +6% to +15% when using Vulkan.

OpenGL Vulkan Mad Max - Stronghold – Tyrant’s Lash (redone)Antergos Linux, 1080p, i7 5960x, 980ti NormalHighVery High OpenGL 96Vulkan 77Vulkan 70OpenGL 48Vulkan 60OpenGL 43 967770486043 020406080100 Average FPS

Here we have a performance difference of between (approx) -20% to +45% when using Vulkan. Looks like there's an odd issue with Vulkan performance there, but I'm not the only one who has seen Vulkan sometimes do a little worse.

OpenGL Vulkan Cutscene - Hope, Glory, and Dog is Dead (redone)Antergos Linux, 1080p, i7 5960x, 980ti NormalHighVery High Vulkan 253OpenGL 228Vulkan 161OpenGL 149Vulkan 135OpenGL 131 253228161149135131 051102153204255 Average FPS

Here we have a performance difference of between (approx) +3% to +11% when using Vulkan.

OpenGL Vulkan Cutscene - Landmover (redone)Antergos Linux, 1080p, i7 5960x, 980ti NormalHighVery High Vulkan 277OpenGL 260Vulkan 180OpenGL 170Vulkan 155OpenGL 153 277260180170155153 056112168224280 Average FPS

Here we have a performance difference of between (approx) +1% to +6% when using Vulkan.

Some thoughts: A fair amount of their time during the Beta so far has likely been spent fixing up the regressed OpenGL side and when taking into consideration Vulkan is considered "Beta", it's likely Feral has optimizations left to do with Vulkan.

You might not think much of a 5% increase, but for people on lower-end hardware a 5% increase can mean a world of difference. I've seen a few people on GOL and Reddit say Vulkan has made it go from sluggish to smooth, which is a clear win.

We also have to consider that the OpenGL renderer in the Mad Max beta has also seen some optimizations since the original release. The original release doesn't have the benchmark mode, so we can't test that in the same way along side the beta.

Then there's also the drivers, Vulkan drivers are new and evolving and likely have their own sets of issues to be fixed. Some of which could affect performance. Sure Vulkan is supposed to have smaller drivers, but with so few Vulkan games out no driver has truly been tested.

Be sure to share your latest results in the comments, I'm keen to see what it's like on your systems too.

Finally, Feral are keen for feedback, email them direct here: vulkanfeedback@feralinteractive.com Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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Ehvis 5 April 2017 at 7:10 pm UTC
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Tomorrow Unigine Superposition will be released. This will show us all that we desperately need new hardware. We'll be ready for the next generation of games.


OlliCI was wondering why there was still one core with 100% on Vulkan. That explains it.

Probably because Mad Max in itself is not a game well optimised for using all cores. Vulkan can reduce the port overhead, it cannot make a game better.
edddeduck_feral 5 April 2017 at 8:28 pm UTC
Ehvis
OlliCI was wondering why there was still one core with 100% on Vulkan. That explains it.

Probably because Mad Max in itself is not a game well optimised for using all cores. Vulkan can reduce the port overhead, it cannot make a game better.

OlliC was talking about the workaround we had to add to the game to avoid issues with the governor on Linux when using Vulkan. Liam mentioned it in the article. We spin the main thread when waiting on the GPU to avoid the governor power saving and causing stalls and pulse/stutters. This is similar to the issue that Serious Sam has.

Mad Max is multithreaded as an engine and the Linux version has a similar thread behaviour to the other platforms as it uses the same base engine code.
Ehvis 5 April 2017 at 8:47 pm UTC
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edddeduck_feralOlliC was talking about the workaround we had to add to the game to avoid issues with the governor on Linux when using Vulkan.

Ah, is that it. It is a bit weird that Ubuntu defaults to powersave on desktops. I should go write a bug report though. ;)
Belarrius 5 April 2017 at 10:02 pm UTC
Does Ryzen 7 is a good CPU with Vulkan? Because he have 16 threads. With vulkan it's seems pretty powerful no? Like better than OpenGL (or DX on windows)
The_Aquabat 6 April 2017 at 3:20 am UTC
I also wish Shadow of Mordor gets ported to Vulkan ... it desperately needs some boost. The benchmark gives me 47 fps average on low settings. Tomb Raider I think runs faster.
Can anyone tell me how to run the benchmark? is it some command to append to the binary? or is it some command with the GLXOSD tool?
The_Aquabat 6 April 2017 at 3:40 am UTC
About the cpu governor. I'm using the cpufreq daemon set to performance. In a desktop machine I don't think there is any reason to use powersave or ondemand, the only reason I think is if you are running server applications or something like that. The cpu gets a little hotter but nothing a good cooler can't handle. In amd there is an option in the bios to disable low clock throttling, I don't remember how it's called High Speed Computing or High Performance Computing (something like that).
Eike 6 April 2017 at 9:31 am UTC
edddeduck_feralOlliC was talking about the workaround we had to add to the game to avoid issues with the governor on Linux when using Vulkan. Liam mentioned it in the article. We spin the main thread when waiting on the GPU to avoid the governor power saving and causing stalls and pulse/stutters. This is similar to the issue that Serious Sam has.

If I may be curious: Are you in contact with other developers like Croteam?
psycho_driver 6 April 2017 at 11:40 am UTC
edddeduck_feral
psycho_driverI really hope this work is back-ported to Shadow of Mordor since it uses roughly the same engine.

The engines are completely unrelated custom engines written by two seperate developers. They are not as related as XCOM and XCOM 2 for example.

So you're saying there's a chance . . .
crt0mega 7 April 2017 at 7:41 am UTC
Still impressive. Good job, Feral!

Now I'd like to see DX:MD with a Vulkan renderer I've read somewhere that MD is quite CPU intensive, maybe there'll be some benefit¹.

________
¹: Yeah, I know that's probably not going to happen. But I can dream, can't I?


Last edited by crt0mega on 7 April 2017 at 7:43 am UTC
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