pigod
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Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 6:54 am

Finally, I got a micro HDMI adapter and plugged Pi4 to my 4k monitor. I had been using Pi4 without a monitor (VNC). I expected at least the level of smoothness and pleasantness that I had with the cheapest Celeron processor and its integrated graphics on Windows 7 several years ago. But oh, no.

Even with 1080p@60Hz, the screen was not smooth. If I click an application window and shake it, I can see graphics tearing at the border of the window. I played a 1080p YouTube video on FireFox. Even though it said no dropped frames, I can definitely feel that something was not right. Probably frames were dropped after video decoding. The video cannot be that un-smooth.

I played a 1080p 10bit x265 video with VLC, and there was a weird flickering black area at the top-left of the window. Of course, the video was not smooth either. And in the fullscreen mode, VLC control or context menu did not appear. I used MPV, and the playback was even slower.

Then I tried 4K@60Hz. RP4 said it supports that, right? The mouse cursor was lagging, and the whole desktop was even less smoother than 1080p.

Is this a software issue or a hardware issue? Was the integrated graphics of the cheapest Celeron from several years ago better than the graphics hardware of Pi4? When I installed Windows on that Celeron, the desktop was smooth and I had no such thing as tearing or weird screen artefacts. It is hard to believe a device after several years cannot do the same thing, given all the remarkable advancements in technology. If this is a software issue, if I install other Linux desktops such as Ubuntu Mate, can I get old Celeron-integrated-level graphics performance?

If this is a hardware limitation, I cannot understand how some people are touting this as a "desktop replacement". It can be good for a server or controlling devices, how can people be content with this kind of desktop?

Technocolour
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:18 am

Linux has had double buffering issues for ages, so that's nothing new.

The result from the lack of it, screen tearing, isn't really a big issue for the vast majority of users.

Then, remembering that double buffering eats bandwidth/power consumption, and it takes effort to implement...

And I'd guess that until the underlying subsystems support it in an easy way. I doubt that much will happen.

(I understand that you find it clunky and harsh to use with single buffering, but sometimes you're an outlier).

jamesh
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:26 am

I have never understood this fascination with wiggling Windows around and making them tear. It's purely cosmetic and doesn't affect functionality at all.

Tearing during video playback is most important of course, along with scrolling Windows.

Note that Firefox is not our recommended browser and does not have the HW acceleration that our custom chromium does. Use that for best play back.

Were you using the installed VLC? That should be accelerated and work ok with h265. Or use Kodi. Make sure all your software is up to date as we are improving video playback all the time.
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:47 am

pigod wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 6:54 am
Finally, I got a micro HDMI adapter and plugged Pi4 to my 4k monitor. I had been using Pi4 without a monitor (VNC). I expected at least the level of smoothness and pleasantness that I had with the cheapest Celeron processor and its integrated graphics on Windows 7 several years ago. But oh, no.

Even with 1080p@60Hz, the screen was not smooth. If I click an application window and shake it, I can see graphics tearing at the border of the window. I played a 1080p YouTube video on FireFox. Even though it said no dropped frames, I can definitely feel that something was not right. Probably frames were dropped after video decoding. The video cannot be that un-smooth.

I played a 1080p 10bit x265 video with VLC, and there was a weird flickering black area at the top-left of the window. Of course, the video was not smooth either. And in the fullscreen mode, VLC control or context menu did not appear. I used MPV, and the playback was even slower.

Then I tried 4K@60Hz. RP4 said it supports that, right? The mouse cursor was lagging, and the whole desktop was even less smoother than 1080p.

Is this a software issue or a hardware issue? Was the integrated graphics of the cheapest Celeron from several years ago better than the graphics hardware of Pi4? When I installed Windows on that Celeron, the desktop was smooth and I had no such thing as tearing or weird screen artefacts. It is hard to believe a device after several years cannot do the same thing, given all the remarkable advancements in technology. If this is a software issue, if I install other Linux desktops such as Ubuntu Mate, can I get old Celeron-integrated-level graphics performance?

If this is a hardware limitation, I cannot understand how some people are touting this as a "desktop replacement". It can be good for a server or controlling devices, how can people be content with this kind of desktop?

Apart from the wiggly windowed screen tearing do not recognise your issues, maybe it is the SD Card you using ?

https://projects.raspberrypi.org/en/pat ... spberry-pi


Using 3rd party software which is not optimised for the Raspberry Pi SBC, as above alluded to, can give a false impression.
Thinking outside the box is better than burying your head in the sand...

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dickon
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 9:42 am

I must admit, the desktop I'm using is a tad underwhelming in that way, too. X, no fancy anything, using evilwm as a window manager, no compositor, 64b mostly-Debian PiOSish (ie, a minimal debian/arm64 with the RPT repository and packages as for the non-lite PiOS64, built up from scratch). Window movement is slow, and lags behind the pointer some distance. As it's just a glorified status screen it doesn't much bother me, but it would be nice to see it improved.

LTolledo
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 10:02 am

pigod wrote:how can people be content with this kind of desktop?
for a $55 SBC.... am content with it.
heck even the then $35 RPi3B am also content with it. (still using it!)

if you're not content..... there is always the $1000 board setup to satisfy your needs. go get it!
ahh maybe that ain't enough.... there is always the $3800 setup..... :mrgreen:
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pigod
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:06 pm

LTolledo wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 10:02 am
if you're not content..... there is always the $1000 board setup to satisfy your needs. go get it!
ahh maybe that ain't enough.... there is always the $3800 setup..... :mrgreen:
I was not saying that Pi4 is useless; As I wrote, I think it is good for a server or controlling hardware. It was just the desktop experience I was talking about, and I do not think it was a far-fetched complaint, because many people seem to say that it could be a desktop replacement, and didn't even the Raspberry Foundation release a desktop pack?

That $1000 comment was totally missing the point. I had mentioned the cheapest desktop Celeron processor and its integrated GPU. And I have also used cheap Windows tablets with a Z3735 or a z8350 Atom CPU. They were slow of course, but the desktop experience was not this bad. I have not used a mini PC, but there are cheap $80 Z3735/8350 mini PC's out there. Judging by the CPU, I think its desktop experience would not be this bad. They usually come with 2GB of RAM, 16GB eMMC storage, power adapter, and a case. If you buy such accessories with a Pi, the price quickly adds up almost to that mini PC's price.

So, what I was asking was if this is a software issue. If so, they should have fixed the problem or not tout it as a desktop replacement. I did not buy Pi4 to replace my desktop, but imaging the disappointment of a not-so-computer-savvy parent who bought this to his child thinking it could be a desktop for the child.

pigod
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:23 pm

jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:26 am
I have never understood this fascination with wiggling Windows around and making them tear. It's purely cosmetic and doesn't affect functionality at all.

Tearing during video playback is most important of course, along with scrolling Windows.

Note that Firefox is not our recommended browser and does not have the HW acceleration that our custom chromium does. Use that for best play back.

Were you using the installed VLC? That should be accelerated and work ok with h265. Or use Kodi. Make sure all your software is up to date as we are improving video playback all the time.
That wiggling was not the cause. I only tried that after feeling that the whole desktop graphics was not smooth, to find out if the graphics is working correctly, because even on Windows, if graphics driver has not been installed, doing so results in such window tearing. Also, that was not the only issue. I could see the page tearing when scrolling web pages.

At first I tried it through VNC (no micro HDMI adapter, yet), but playing a YouTube video, even in 144P, on the default Chromium browser was dropping a lot of frames (Stats for Nerds). When I searched the web for this, I found that someone has written that FireFox uses OpenGL acceleration for video playback (implying that Chromium does not) and provides better YouTube playback. So that was why I only used FireFox for this test.

Yes, I used the default VNC. As I wrote, not only the video playback was not smooth, there was a big rectangular region where black screen was flashing. I have used VNC on many other Linux desktops running on x86 computers, but I have never seen anything like this. I was not going to use Pi as my desktop replacement, I was testing if it can be, because so many people said about it.

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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:24 pm

We are expecting an improvement when we move to the full KMS driver, but tbh, I use the pi4 desktop most days using FKMS and it works fine for me.

I don't jiggle windows about because that's not part of my working day, I don't use Firefox because that is not accelerated. I'm using a 1080p display, so not ultra high resolution but perfectly usable. I am completely up to date with the latest software, but I don't play back H265 (Youtube works fine in Chromium). I get no mouse lag, very little tearing on window movement, very little tearing on YouTube, very little teating on window scrolling (e.g. Browsing)

So for me, the desktop works well. I presume its pretty much the same for the rest of the users out there. Good enough for most and not bad for something that cost $55 (4GB Pi4).

So I don't know why the OP is having such a bad experience. Perhaps trying to find out would be the best approach, rather than launching in to tirades about how bad it is?
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:27 pm

pigod wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:23 pm
jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:26 am
I have never understood this fascination with wiggling Windows around and making them tear. It's purely cosmetic and doesn't affect functionality at all.

Tearing during video playback is most important of course, along with scrolling Windows.

Note that Firefox is not our recommended browser and does not have the HW acceleration that our custom chromium does. Use that for best play back.

Were you using the installed VLC? That should be accelerated and work ok with h265. Or use Kodi. Make sure all your software is up to date as we are improving video playback all the time.
That wiggling was not the cause. I only tried that after feeling that the whole desktop graphics was not smooth, to find out if the graphics is working correctly, because even on Windows, if graphics driver has not been installed, doing so results in such window tearing. Also, that was not the only issue. I could see the page tearing when scrolling web pages.

At first I tried it through VNC (no micro HDMI adapter, yet), but playing a YouTube video, even in 144P, on the default Chromium browser was dropping a lot of frames (Stats for Nerds). When I searched the web for this, I found that someone has written that FireFox uses OpenGL acceleration for video playback (implying that Chromium does not) and provides better YouTube playback. So that was why I only used FireFox for this test.

Yes, I used the default VNC. As I wrote, not only the video playback was not smooth, there was a big rectangular region where black screen was flashing. I have used VNC on many other Linux desktops running on x86 computers, but I have never seen anything like this. I was not going to use Pi as my desktop replacement, I was testing if it can be, because so many people said about it.
So, you are trying to get a feel for the Pi4 performance on the desktop via VNC? A remote desktop protocol? That will NEVER be a good indicator. There are WAY too many overheads to take in to account.

You can ONLY determine suitability as a desktop with a directly attached display. End of.


EDIT: Why not VNC? A remote protocol has to capture the desktop, encode the data (which can be extensive if you are playing back video), send the results over a network connection, decode the data-stream, then re-display on the host machine. All of which slows the remote desktop down a LOT compared with running 'native'.
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pigod
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:33 pm

Technocolour wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:18 am
Linux has had double buffering issues for ages, so that's nothing new.

The result from the lack of it, screen tearing, isn't really a big issue for the vast majority of users.

Then, remembering that double buffering eats bandwidth/power consumption, and it takes effort to implement...

And I'd guess that until the underlying subsystems support it in an easy way. I doubt that much will happen.

(I understand that you find it clunky and harsh to use with single buffering, but sometimes you're an outlier).
I do not know about Linux well, but I knew by experience that on the same x86 PC, Linux desktop's graphics was not as smooth as that of Windows. I read something about the old X11 protocol and GPU manufacturer's not providing open-source driver for their GPU, etc. But I thought Pi could be different. The hardware was specifically designed for Linux, and the desktop OS (The Raspberry OS) is provided by the very manufacturer of the hardware. So, I thought maybe they have optimised the graphics to provide smooth desktop graphics. I mean, Android is basically Linux, and even cheap Android phones provide smooth graphics, right?

I had been thinking Pi as a low-powered server or hardware-controlling computer, so I would not have complained about slow desktop graphics, IF people were not touting it as a desktop replacement.

jamesh
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:37 pm

pigod wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:33 pm
Technocolour wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:18 am
Linux has had double buffering issues for ages, so that's nothing new.

The result from the lack of it, screen tearing, isn't really a big issue for the vast majority of users.

Then, remembering that double buffering eats bandwidth/power consumption, and it takes effort to implement...

And I'd guess that until the underlying subsystems support it in an easy way. I doubt that much will happen.

(I understand that you find it clunky and harsh to use with single buffering, but sometimes you're an outlier).
I do not know about Linux well, but I knew by experience that on the same x86 PC, Linux desktop's graphics was not as smooth as that of Windows. I read something about the old X11 protocol and GPU manufacturer's not providing open-source driver for their GPU, etc. But I thought Pi could be different. The hardware was specifically designed for Linux, and the desktop OS (The Raspberry OS) is provided by the very manufacturer of the hardware. So, I thought maybe they have optimised the graphics to provide smooth desktop graphics. I mean, Android is basically Linux, and even cheap Android phones provide smooth graphics, right?

I had been thinking Pi as a low-powered server or hardware-controlling computer, so I would not have complained about slow desktop graphics, IF people were not touting it as a desktop replacement.
Pi HW (specifically the SoC) was not designed for Linux. Raspberry Pi OS is developed from Debian Linux by us, not the manufacturer of the SoC (Broadcom), we have optimised the graphics to some extent. As for Android, their graphics path is a nightmare and has 12 years of the might of Google optimising it.

But VNC is the problem here, not the Pi.
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dickon
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:42 pm

jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:37 pm
But VNC is the problem here, not the Pi.
VNC is certainly an issue, but I'm also seeing lag with a fairly vanilla setup and no VNC in sight. I'll probably have a go at it this weekend, mostly as a distraction from what I should be doing, but I'm not too hopeful I'll find anything.

For my use-case of this particular Pi, I class it as mildly irksome, which is why I haven't mentioned it before, or attempted to do anything about it.

pigod
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:43 pm

jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:27 pm
So, you are trying to get a feel for the Pi4 performance on the desktop via VNC? A remote desktop protocol? That will NEVER be a good indicator. There are WAY too many overheads to take in to account.

You can ONLY determine suitability as a desktop with a directly attached display. End of.


EDIT: Why not VNC? A remote protocol has to capture the desktop, encode the data (which can be extensive if you are playing back video), send the results over a network connection, decode the data-stream, then re-display on the host machine. All of which slows the remote desktop down a LOT compared with running 'native'.
No, you misunderstood me. I am sorry for the confusion. I had tried it via VNC before I got the micro HDMI adapter. That was when I found the things about FireFox being better than Chromium for YouTube. I have micro HDMI adapters now, and the OP was my experience of using the Pi connected to a real 4K monitor using the micro HDMI adapter.

bjtheone
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 2:00 pm

I have a couple of 4B used daily as desktops. My son uses his almost exclusively for YouTube. While it certainly does not deliver the performance of some of my high end systems it delivers a very "useable" desktop performance at a very compelling price/footprint. I don't believe you are going to get better YouTube performance using Firefox than Chromium, since RPT has invested considerable time and effort in tweaking the performance for Chromium.

While there certainly will be a performance difference between a current x86 desktop and a 4B, I suspect part of your issues are due to your software configuration. I would suggest going back to a default "out of the box" config and seeing how it behaves. There is a lot of outdated and just plain wrong info out there on tuning Pi performance. Given the rate of change and updates anything that is more than 3 or 4 months old for the 4B is likely out of date.

jamesh
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 2:50 pm

pigod wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:43 pm
jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:27 pm
So, you are trying to get a feel for the Pi4 performance on the desktop via VNC? A remote desktop protocol? That will NEVER be a good indicator. There are WAY too many overheads to take in to account.

You can ONLY determine suitability as a desktop with a directly attached display. End of.


EDIT: Why not VNC? A remote protocol has to capture the desktop, encode the data (which can be extensive if you are playing back video), send the results over a network connection, decode the data-stream, then re-display on the host machine. All of which slows the remote desktop down a LOT compared with running 'native'.
No, you misunderstood me. I am sorry for the confusion. I had tried it via VNC before I got the micro HDMI adapter. That was when I found the things about FireFox being better than Chromium for YouTube. I have micro HDMI adapters now, and the OP was my experience of using the Pi connected to a real 4K monitor using the micro HDMI adapter.
Gotcha.

Can I suggest forcing the resolution to 1080p (use the screen config utility from the preference menu). Rerun your tests and see if everything gets better. I would expect that work very well. That will show whether its simply the demand of stuffing 4 times as much graphics data around, or whether you have some other issue. You should use Chromium, that will be faster than Firefox for most stuff. Not sure why someone would suggest otherwise.

4k will be slower, that just par for the course, there is a lot more going on.
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ejolson
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:36 pm

pigod wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:23 pm
jamesh wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:26 am
I have never understood this fascination with wiggling Windows around and making them tear. It's purely cosmetic and doesn't affect functionality at all.
That wiggling was not the cause. I only tried that after feeling that the whole desktop graphics was not smooth, to find out if the graphics is working correctly, because even on Windows, if graphics driver has not been installed, doing so results in such window tearing. Also, that was not the only issue. I could see the page tearing when scrolling web pages.
Tearing when moving a window on x86 systems typically indicates video driver fallback to SVGA bitmap mode.

For example, Intel based 486 computers often shipped with graphics cards that could perform 2D acceleration. It was easy to verify the accelerated driver was installed just by moving a window.

Things go wrong with drivers in the PC world all the time because there are so many different kinds of video cards used in otherwise similar computers. What people seem to find astonishing is that every Pi 4B has exactly the same VC6 video hardware and still there are driver problems. Granted, two different GPUs now exist in the Pi ecosystem; however, that is still far fewer than what PC users have to deal with.

A similar thread, started by a somewhat known individual outside the Raspberry Pi community, concerning previous models of Pi computers is

viewtopic.php?f=66&t=233552

My opinion is that the 4B already makes a pretty good desktop replacement, but the main difficulty is still the video driver.

binarynerd
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Sun Aug 09, 2020 1:49 am

I am using raspbian 32 bit buster with a pi 4b (2Gb). It serves dual duty as a network file share and an always on computer to quickly look up stuff or watch videos on a big screen. To that end, I am trying to figure out hardware decoding for both local media (mostly 1080p h264) and youtube streams via youtube-dl and mpv.

My googling the topic only left me more confused about what is currently the best working player for hardware accelerated video on pi4? I would prefer mpv (prefer the shortcuts and integration with play-with-mpv chromium addon) but vlc should be fine too. I am not averse to compiling from source but that just makes it harder to upgrade in the future when support lands in official packages.

Can someone point me to a thread that shows how to get this working reliably?

Moonmarch
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:09 pm

You can change the size of the icons in the File Manager. Open multiple windows at the same time by clicking the folder button on the top left corner. Change the size of the desktop using Desktop Preferences. Sdd more applets to the Task Bar. Right click on the Task Bar, and click on Add/Remove Panel Items. Change the desktop wallpaper. I use Mousepad to edit text files. I use the Thunderbird email client to view emails linked to my email accounts. Open Transport Tycoon Deluxe is a very addicting, free, and open source simulation management game. This is a game that runs very smooth on the Raspberry Pi 3B+ computer. I compiled the game using the source code on the GitHub website.

YouTube runs fine at 1080P 60 FPS with the Chromium Web Browser. Will you drop frames, I don't pay attention to these measurements. YouTube videos should not stutter or buffer frequently during video playback. These are situations that I do not see very often on the Raspberry Pi 3B+ computer. The Chromium web browser will crash if open for long periods of time. This problem can be solved by restarting the computer. You can change the Zoom value in the Chromium Web Browser using the menu function. Chromium will be more usable on a larger screen if you increase the zoom value in the Chromium browser settings.

spcharc
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:05 am

In my opinion, if you don't want to play with GPIO, don't buy a Pi. An x86 mini PC is more suitable for you.
Let's compare a random mini PC on Amazon [I'm not advertising so let me hide the brand and model] vs Raspberry Pi 4

That mini PC ($120) provides:
Case
Fan
Power supply
HDMI cable
64GB internal storage
Intel Celeron N3350 (dual core)
Intel HD Graphics 500
4GB ram
WiFi (2.4GHz up to 450Mbps, 5GHz up to 1300Mbps)
BT 4.2
USB 3 + 1Gbps Ethernet

CanaKit Raspberry Pi 4 4GB Starter MAX Kit - 64GB Edition ($115) provides:
Case
Fan
Power supply
2x HDMI cable
64GB sd card
BCM2711 (quad core)
Video Core 6
4GB ram
WiFi (2.4GHz and 5GHz)
BT 5.0
USB 3 + 1Gbps Ethernet

However the mini PC has a 14nm Intel Celeron CPU that easily beats Raspberry Pi's 28nm ARM CPU, with a 14nm Intel HD 500 GPU that can do DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5 and Vulkan, while the Raspberry Pi GPU can only do OpenGL 2.1 with FKMS driver I believe? (not talking about OpenGL ES here)
The mini PC can run windows 10.
It can go into sleep or hibernate mode, while Raspberry Pi cannot.
It has Intel hardware video decode acceleration and 4K output.
It has x64 architecture, you can use many proprietary x86/x64 software.
WiFi performance of the mini PC is far better. I guess that mini PC has a 3x3 WiFi while the Raspberry Pi has a poor 1x1 WiFi.

So in my opinion the mini PC is better in almost every aspects. If you can afford the extra $5, why would you even consider Raspberry Pi?
And remember, this is just a random mini PC on Amazon. I didn't do research and I don't know whether it's the best option. But I also noticed there are even cheaper options with Atom CPUs. I don't think Raspberry Pi has a price advantage.

Again, if you don't want to play with GPIO, don't buy a Pi.

ejolson
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Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:27 am

spcharc wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:05 am
In my opinion, if you don't want to play with GPIO, don't buy a Pi. An x86 mini PC is more suitable for you.
Let's compare a random mini PC on Amazon [I'm not advertising so let me hide the brand and model] vs Raspberry Pi 4

That mini PC ($120) provides:
Case
Fan
Power supply
HDMI cable
64GB internal storage
Intel Celeron N3350 (dual core)
Intel HD Graphics 500
4GB ram
WiFi (2.4GHz up to 450Mbps, 5GHz up to 1300Mbps)
BT 4.2
USB 3 + 1Gbps Ethernet

CanaKit Raspberry Pi 4 4GB Starter MAX Kit - 64GB Edition ($115) provides:
Case
Fan
Power supply
2x HDMI cable
64GB sd card
BCM2711 (quad core)
Video Core 6
4GB ram
WiFi (2.4GHz and 5GHz)
BT 5.0
USB 3 + 1Gbps Ethernet

However the mini PC has a 14nm Intel Celeron CPU that easily beats Raspberry Pi's 28nm ARM CPU, with a 14nm Intel HD 500 GPU that can do DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5 and Vulkan, while the Raspberry Pi GPU can only do OpenGL 2.1 with FKMS driver I believe? (not talking about OpenGL ES here)
The mini PC can run windows 10.
It can go into sleep or hibernate mode, while Raspberry Pi cannot.
It has Intel hardware video decode acceleration and 4K output.
It has x64 architecture, you can use many proprietary x86/x64 software.
WiFi performance of the mini PC is far better. I guess that mini PC has a 3x3 WiFi while the Raspberry Pi has a poor 1x1 WiFi.

So in my opinion the mini PC is better in almost every aspects. If you can afford the extra $5, why would you even consider Raspberry Pi?
And remember, this is just a random mini PC on Amazon. I didn't do research and I don't know whether it's the best option. But I also noticed there are even cheaper options with Atom CPUs. I don't think Raspberry Pi has a price advantage.

Again, if you don't want to play with GPIO, don't buy a Pi.
If you have that Celeron N3350 miniPC, would you mind running the Pi pie chart program from the link in the first post of the thread

viewtopic.php?t=227177

and posting the results to see whether it's really faster or not?

spcharc
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:23 am

Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:57 am

ejolson wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:27 am
If you have that Celeron N3350 miniPC
No. It's just a random one from Amazon. I don't have it.

spcharc
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:23 am

Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 4:33 am

ejolson wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:27 am
would you mind running the Pi pie chart program
I can't run pie chart program but I do have a result found on the internet. I found someone tested using sysbench and concluded that N3350 is 20 times faster than Raspberry Pi 3B.
Link: https://www.amulet.co.jp/shop-blog/?p=8918

ejolson
Posts: 5975
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:47 am

Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:37 am

spcharc wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 4:33 am
ejolson wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:27 am
would you mind running the Pi pie chart program
I can't run pie chart program but I do have a result found on the internet. I found someone tested using sysbench and concluded that N3350 is 20 times faster than Raspberry Pi 3B.
Link: https://www.amulet.co.jp/shop-blog/?p=8918
It looks like they were running the sysbench version 1.0.x, so I downloaded a similar version and compiled as

Code: Select all

$ git clone -b 1.0 https://github.com/akopytov/sysbench.git
$ cd sysbench
$ ./autogen.sh
$ ./configure --without-mysql
$ make -j4
Then I ran sysbench on the Pi 4B and obtained

Code: Select all

$ ./src/sysbench --test=cpu --num-threads=4 run
sysbench 1.0.20-ebf1c90 (using bundled LuaJIT 2.1.0-beta2)

Running the test with following options:
Number of threads: 4
Initializing random number generator from current time


Prime numbers limit: 10000

Initializing worker threads...

Threads started!

CPU speed:
    events per second:  5920.95

General statistics:
    total time:                          10.0006s
    total number of events:              59237

Latency (ms):
         min:                                    0.67
         avg:                                    0.67
         max:                                   13.71
         95th percentile:                        0.68
         sum:                                39960.54

Threads fairness:
    events (avg/stddev):           14809.2500/9.73
    execution time (avg/stddev):   9.9901/0.01
Comparing with the results

Image

I see the 4B is about 2.7 times faster than the N3350. In summary

Code: Select all

        time      events   events/sec
Pi 4B   10.0006   59237    5923.34
N3350   10.0018   22075    2207.10
Note that the above results were obtained when running the Pi 4B using the beta-test 64-bit Raspberry Pi OS. Since sysbench measures how fast the processor can perform 64-bit divisions, the results when running in 32-bit mode are significantly slower. Since there were no results reported when running the N3350 in 32-bit mode, I did not run the 4B in 32-bit mode either.

Part of the discrepancy between the results in this post and the site you linked are due to the fact that the 4B is about twice faster than the 3B. The other difference is because the site you linked tested the 4B running in 32-bit mode and the N3350 in 64-bit mode. Since the sysbench test measures how fast 64-bit division can be performed, one should either run both machines in 32-bit mode or both machines in 64-bit mode for a meaningful comparison.

My experience is the Intel processors have floating-point units that are relatively faster than their integer units. Therefore, since the Pi pie chart benchmark consists of four tests two of which are floating point intensive, it is likely that the 4B would not appear quite so much faster than the N3350 in that case.

GlowInTheDark
Posts: 1066
Joined: Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:14 pm

Re: Is Pi4 desktop experience supposed to be this bad?

Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:55 am

In my opinion, if you don't want to play with GPIO, don't buy a Pi. An x86 mini PC is more suitable for you.
What makes the Pi so great is the level of support. No other board comes close.
This forum, in particular, is a great thing. No other board's support board is anywhere near as active.
Let's compare a random mini PC on Amazon [I'm not advertising so let me hide the brand and model] vs Raspberry Pi 4
The problem with buying anything X86 nowadays is that it will come with, cough, cough, "Windows" 10.

And it may not be easy/possible to remove it and replace it with something else.
GitD's list of things that are not ready for prime time:
1) IPv6
2) 64 bit OSes
3) USB 3
4) Bluetooth

Loves Linux; loves to dance.

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