ODROID-N2 GPU Drivers, Linux 5.0, and Impressive glmarks-es2 Score

ODROID-N2 was announced last February for $63 (2GB RAM), and $79 (4GB RAM), but Hardkernel was not quite ready to take orders at the time. One of the good news is that the 4GB RAM is now available for pre-order with shipping scheduled to start on April 3.

Another good news is on the software side with Hardkernel having released the userland Mali-G52 Wayland driver. It does not work well with Linux 4.9 due to incomplete DRM implementation, but it goes work with Linux 5.0 plus some modifications as further discussed in the aforelinked forum thread.

Ubuntu 18.04 Gnome Wayland ODROID-N2 GPU Drivers
Click to Enlarge

The screenshot above, courtesy of odroid forum member memeka , shows ODROID-N2 running Ubuntu 18.04 + Gnome3 + Linux 5.0 on top of Wayland with GPU drivers providing acceleration as shown by glmark2-es2-wayland test program.

The benchmark results are pretty impressive:

I’ve never seen such as high score (1,119 points) on Arm hardware. But at the same time, I’ve never run the wayland version of the benchmark, so that may partially explain it. For reference, RockPro64 RK3399 SBC gets 48 points in the onscreen test (default), and 201 points in the offscreen test. I could not find results for glmark2-es2-wayland for Rockchip RK3399 despite being supported. So we’ll have to see what part of the much higher score is part of the Mali-G52MP GPU, and which part is the use of Wayland over Xorg/X11.

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20 Replies to “ODROID-N2 GPU Drivers, Linux 5.0, and Impressive glmarks-es2 Score”

  1. As far as I remember from the N1, glmark2-es2-wayland results were in the 800-900 range for RK3399, but with a 32bit blob and userland. But I doubt it would have been bigger on 64bit userland.

    1. > glmark2-es2-wayland results were in the 800-900 range for RK3399

      And how is it possible that Jean-Luc only got a score of 48 points when testing? Is this just the difference between X11 and Wayland?

      1. Two words: buffer management. For the on-screen tests, the presentation part of the pipeline has been the bane of most GLX/EGL stacks. It doesn’t matter how quick a GPU is, if the presentation part does memcpy between FBs/RTs/pixelbuffers/etc. For the off-screen tests, one’d need to profile, but I’d wager some buffer management shenanigans at play as well. Wayland traditionally solves the presentation part.

        1. For the onscreen tests, I think the maximum framerate is also limited by vsync. For example if output if 1080p50, the benchmarks may not go over 50 fps.

          1. That’s right, vsync is a factor in on-screen. I was referring to the registered difference in performance of N1 under wayland and x11 whether on-screen or off-screen.

    1. We’re talking about the GPU drivers here. i.e. for 3D graphics acceleration.
      The VPU is for video encoding/decoding.

  2. I’d suggest taking Linux 5.x benchmarks with a pinch of salt, as apparently a lot of hardware benchmark a lot higher on Linux 5.x, but there’s no real world performance gain.

    1. For real? I saw some Linux 5.0 benchmarks on Phoronix and there was a decrease in performance in some tests

    1. glmark should support something like offscreen rendering. so it should be possible to run test with 4k resolution

  3. To date, a large majority of MALI models, can support Wayland. I am just as curious, to see turning Kodi with a VPU able to be used, something that I doubt following my many tests.
    If the Amlogic codecs are still usable on the Kernel 5.0, we will have to use Framebuffer, or Xorg.

    1. there are no x11 drivers, arm stopped providing them in recent mali DDKs.
      for N2, there are no amlogic codecs on 5.0, but they are working for the older amlogic socs (s805, s905). so i’m sure there will be soon for N2 too.
      Kodi is ok on wayland on gbm.

      1. I did not know for “X11”, remains to see if an buildroot has AMLogic is planned officially, with the use of the Framebuffer and these codecs.
        I doubt the Dream team is designing their own video accelerator for the “Dreambox One”, I think, they relied on the ports (/dev/amstream, /dev/amvideo…), and official codecs.

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