AMD’s official Vulkan driver for Linux “AMDVLK” has dropped support for Polaris and Vega GPUs, however, the open-source Mesa RADV driver continues to push optimizations.
AMD’s Polaris & Vega GPUs Won’t Feel Left Out In Vulkan Since RADV Is Still Pushing Out Optimizations While AMDVLK Ends Support
Phoronix reports that with the AMDVLK 2023.Q4.1 driver, AMD has excluded Polaris/Vega GPUs from the support list, which has given rise to a sense of “neglect” from the community, given that the Radeon RX 500 series is still highly reputed amongst Linux users.
To back this statement, the latest Steam Hardware Survey shows that a “decent” portion of AMD’s share of the platform goes to Radeon RX 500 series users, which indicates that the lineup still isn’t outdated for many. However, the drop for support at Linux shows that AMD plans on “moving on”, starting with Linux. The company also pushed back driver support on the official front with the latest Radeon Adrenalin Edition 23.11.1 drivers
However, Polaris and especially Vega GPU users shouldn’t worry since third-party developers have your back. The RADV Vulkan driver, which is being maintained by several third-party developers is at the forefront when it comes to dropping optimizations for “aging” AMD lineups, & the latest optimization brings performance improvement to Vega/GFX9 GPUs, through adjusting the binning settings for the hardware.
While performance improvements haven’t been disclosed yet, the new changes were already merged yesterday for RADV. If we look at the broader scale, MESA’s RADV Vulkan driver is shaping up to be a viable alternative to AMD’s Vulkan driver, since not only third-party developers are maintaining support for outdated lineups, but they are bringing significant performance improvements over a period of time, as reported previously, where a 20% performance uplift was seen.
AMD does have some catching to do at Linux’s camp, however, we do see the future bright, considering the company has already started to push out patches for next-gen RDNA 4, as well as bringing new features to the platform.
News Source: Phoronix