SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

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jambo
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SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by jambo » 19 Nov 2015, 11:26

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2015/11/a ... os-gaming/

Some excerpts
Once everything was set up, we put the machine through Geekbench 3 (which, unlike many other benchmark tools we considered, actually has a Linux version). The results show a definite edge for Windows 10, especially in terms of floating point operations. Still, SteamOS is within the same order of power magnitude in many other performance metrics.

No matter how you slice it, running these two high-end titles on SteamOS comes with a sizable frame rate hit; we got anywhere from 21- to 58-percent fewer frames per second, depending on the graphical settings. On our hardware running Shadow of Mordor at Ultra settings and HD resolution, the OS change alone was the difference between a playable 34.5 fps average on Windows and a stuttering 14.6 fps mess on SteamOS.

Unfortunately, Valve's own Source engine games showed the same performance hit when compared to their Windows versions. Portal, Team Fortress 2, and DOTA 2 all took massive frame rate dips on SteamOS compared to their Windows counterparts; only Left 4 Dead 2 showed comparable performance between the two operating systems (though there's no sign of those SteamOS frame rate improvements Valve cited years ago).
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Now obviously, this mainly comes down to driver optimisations and the fact that DirectX has been around for so long and is a great API. I'm just not sure if this will suddenly change, seeing as SteamOS and Linux make up less than a percent of the Steam hardware survey.

I'll definitely be going the route of Steam Link instead of Steam Machine.
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by GamingKen » 19 Nov 2015, 11:34

jambo wrote: Now obviously, this mainly comes down to driver optimisations and the fact that DirectX has been around for so long and is a great API. I'm just not sure if this will suddenly change, seeing as SteamOS and Linux make up less than a percent of the Steam hardware survey.

I'll definitely be going the route of Steam Link instead of Steam Machine.
In a word, ouch! And as you pointed out, with such a small percentage of users it is hard to see it changing in a hurry. Steam Link is my preferred option too, or a Steam Machine style device running Windows and just using Big Picture Mode.
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by kharis » 19 Nov 2015, 12:06

Yeah I think steam link will be the way to go. Unless I can take over the tv for all of my pc needs :)
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by PirateEggs » 19 Nov 2015, 16:48

So, what you're trying to tell me is, that DirectX and proper GPU drivers are required for the best performance? Well shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitttt.
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by jambo » 19 Nov 2015, 16:55

PirateEggs wrote:So, what you're trying to tell me is, that DirectX and proper GPU drivers are required for the best performance? Well shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitttt.
Yes. A lot of people buying a Steam Machine running SteamOS would probably assume that the games would run at a graphical level similar to a PC.

It's good to have information like this.
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by acegiak » 19 Nov 2015, 17:04

Yeah unfortunately this is a thing that is only going to change slowly over time. Steam OS will have to gradually accrue more developer attention, which it's doing. The huge improvements in performance I've seen over recent years in linux gaming are crazy. The fact that I don't feel the need to have a windows partition for gaming any more is testament to that imo.
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Re: SteamOS gaming performs significantly worse than Windows, 21%-58% frame rate dip on same hardware

Post by Jagji56 » 19 Nov 2015, 17:33

Linx being Linx though, it could just be that something is not being tested right. :P
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