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Opinions on the state on Nvidia drivers

So I'm gradually getting sick of Window's bs and I'm getting close to pulling the trigger on switching to a Linux distro, most likely Ubuntu, but would like some opinions first. I'm running an R5 5600X paired with an RTX 2080 Ti and was wondering about driver quality. I've heard a lot about the all over the place quality of Nvidia drivers. I'll be primarily gaming with some light productivity courtesy of college. So any opinions would be greatly appreciated

       
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32

The main issue for gaming is not vendor specific, all of them are affected. They all work fine when it comes to basics. Render fine, perform fine etc.

The major issue when going from Windows to Linux is the lack of a proper graphics control panel, for all vendors. No more game profiles, no more overriding graphics features, no more global FPS counter or screenshot feature etc.

Things to replace all of these do exist. But when you need a separate program to force AA, another to force AF, another to control vsync, yet another to lock the frame rate, one for a performance overlay, another to take a screenshot, a full OBS install just to capture some footage, even though you never intended to stream anything etc. it really becomes super messy in no time.

39

Im on the 30xx series on Debian Testing and it’s been pretty good so far.

I had to manually install from the non free repo because the firmware didn’t get installed with the OS.

I also had to tinker with a few settings to get G-Sync working properly. You have to make sure everything has got VSync switched off and you’re using a modern compositor for your DE, as well as turn on G-Sync in Nvidia Settings.

One caveat is that the Nvidia Settings app is nowhere near as good as the Windows version. The customisability is there but it’s a PITA to figure out how to do anything.

If you’re new to Linux I would probably recommend going with Pop OS or Ubuntu since they have better out-of-the-box support for non free firmwares.

31

I have an optimus laptop with an external display hooked up. Do i have to explain any further? Only when i choose to use the nvidia card all of the time it's working in linux mint and kubuntu but i can't for the live of me get it to work in manjaro kde for example. Intel only mode doesn't support the external monitor at all and 'on demand' makes it unusable, rendering the desktop at 1fps. That being said, as long as i keep it on nvidia mode it runs fine, games run at a good speed and no stability issues but i don't think i'll ever buy another laptop or system with an nvidia card in it.

25

I have been using nvidia drivers with a 5 year old laptop for 8 months now. No problems other than that one time were i fricked up and installed like 3 drivers at the same time. I'd say go ahead and switch.

32

The official NVIDIA drivers are great as long as you are using Xorg (which you probably should, anyway). The main gripe people have with them is that they are closed-source, while AMD drivers are open.

There are open-source reverse engineered NVIDIA drivers, but those are unsuitable for anything but drawing the UI, they really exist just so distros can ship something to NVIDIA users before they download the official ones.

29

As long as you either stay on X, or don't do Wayland on laptops, you'll be somewhat fine.

24

I am running Arch with an ASUS TUF 3090. Works pretty flawlessly for everything I can throw at it, from Doom Eternal to Blender Optix renders.

Xwayland support is still a bit iffy. They're supposed to have improved it with the 470 drivers but every time I log into Plasma Wayland all Xwayland windows display with a black screen as it's contents. That will probably get fixed in a few months though.

26

I had to compile my own kernel with certain features, clearly documented by my distro, to get them working. But it was merely following instructions.

25

No issues on Arch, I play games with Steam and wine, some with better performance than windows.

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