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Taxicletter
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What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:27 pm

Hi again,

I know the Raspberry Pi is no PowerBook, but what can I expect in terms of programs I can run?

I noticed mixcloud.com (not a program, I know) loads very slow, but Facebook works fine (which is slow on my smartphone). I tried the game Armagetron, but that didn't work.
So, I guess using Gimp or Inkscape is out of the question? I DID read somewhere that Quake III runs on Raspberry Pi. I don't know ANYTHING about games, but I would guess Quake is more demanding then Armagetron or a mixcloud-webpage? The strange thing is, in the graphic on the top right corner, I can see sometimes a cpu usage (if that's what it is) of 10 %, while everything start running slow.

Oh, I don't run more then one program at the same time.

And, if I wanted to, is it possible to "boost" the Raspberry with hardware?
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asandford
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:31 pm

Tell us what type of application you want to run, and I'm sure someone will suggest a suitable one if possible.

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GTR2Fan
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:40 pm

Taxicletter wrote:So, I guess using Gimp or Inkscape is out of the question?
I run both here. They're not exactly blindingly fast, but they're both usable.
I DID read somewhere that Quake III runs on Raspberry Pi.
Yes. I run that also. It's surprisingly fast and smooth. Definitely very playable.
And, if I wanted to, is it possible to "boost" the Raspberry with hardware?
Not really, but there are many tweaks that can be made to the Pi itself to make it considerably faster. Others can probably help you with that.
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:44 pm

Which one? Note that the "original" Raspberry A/B/A+/B+ is different from the Raspberry Pi 0, and the Raspberry Pi 2 is faster, and the Raspberry Pi 3 is yet faster again. None of them compare with a modern PC or laptop, but they can certainly do many jobs just fine. Can't comment on the games, my collection of Pis do data-acquisition jobs and run generally run headless.

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topguy
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Wed Mar 09, 2016 11:15 pm

mixcloud.com loads a lot of big graphics and has little text so it eats a lot of memory which the Pi doesnt have too much of. And you would be surprised how crappy Javascript code one can allow oneself to write if your main usergroup is on multicore 2GHz+ cpu's.

Games are all about using the GPU for rendering 3D graphics, if its not written for the Pi's GPU it will not run smoothly (or it will do it only in a very small window). A game like Quake 3 is 90% graphics rendering and the rest is very simple physics.

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 9:33 am

asandford wrote:Tell us what type of application you want to run, and I'm sure someone will suggest a suitable one if possible.
Gimp and Inkscape :-) But also Mixxx.
I installed them, but hadn't the time to test them. Because the Tron-game ran so slow, I was getting worried :-).
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 9:39 am

jbeale wrote:Which one?
Sorry, forget to mention... The latest, Raspberry Pi 3.

Thanks (again) @GTR2Fan and @topguy
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ghans
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:02 am

Unless the Game has been explicitly
tailored/ported to/optimized for the Pi , always use package
managment (APT , "Software Center") to get software
which has a chance of actually working on the Pi.

You might see speed improvements in many such packaged
applications if you enable the experimental 3D driver ,
which is a bit unstable and for now breaks some other stuff.

The explanation is that (io)quake falls in the very small first
category , while most browsers are still in the latter.

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Taxicletter
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:18 am

ghans wrote:Unless the Game has been explicitly
tailored/ported to/optimized for the Pi , always use package
managment (APT , "Software Center") to get software
which has a chance of actually working on the Pi.s
OK. I do that. Armagetron is from the sofware-center. As is Brutal Chess, what also doesn't run like it should. But my aim is not to game, so that's not important.
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ghans
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:20 am

Make a backup , and try the games with the
experimental 3D driver. You might even see improvements
in browsers.

Code: Select all

sudo rapspi-config

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:53 am

Taxicletter wrote: I know the Raspberry Pi is no PowerBook, but what can I expect in terms of programs I can run?
I think you'll be shocked by the RPi3B, it's got more MIPS per square centimetre than ANY other computer I've ever used. (Especially compared to my 2012 vintage smart phone.)
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:11 pm

Taxicletter wrote:And, if I wanted to, is it possible to "boost" the Raspberry with hardware?
By enabling for example the alpha-version of the new OpenGL-driver via raspi-config, you'll get a boosted i.e. hardware-accelerated and hence very usable Blender (via apt-get).

Compared to the very, very slow software-only Blender when no OpenGL driver is there to use the Pi3's Videocore4 2d-3d-chip.

By the way, Blender includes a complete video editor, supporting all the import and export codecs which we know from other video software relying too on the OpenSource video packages (like ffmpeg I think?).

That is on the current Raspian OS. And again we see how important software really is. And that's the big pro concerning the Pi: solid hardware and solid software!

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:28 pm

I was using a 1A 5V power supply, that was causing the slowness! I read some wrong documentation.

@Fidelius I used the openGL like you said, and that was no problem (no help either) when I used the 1A power supply. Now I'm using an iPad 2,1A5V (I ordered the Raspberry Pi Power Supply, but meanwhile...) my system flickered black screens and eventually stayed black. This was before and after a clean reinstall. When I disabled the openGL, the flickering and final black frozen screen stopped.

I'll wait a little, until it's less experimental :-D
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Mon Mar 14, 2016 8:58 pm

Understanding the difference in games on a Pi to games on a gaming computer.
The graphics card on a gaming computer, draws high current from the power supply
The reason for this is very fast signals draw high current at the peak of signal change.
This can be very repetitive on some games. All this generates heat (Watts)
A high speed graphics card will have a large heat sinks a fan and higher wattage
rated components
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rzusman
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Mon Mar 14, 2016 10:08 pm

The power consumption of a graphic card during game play is due to all the hundreds of little processors on it all calculating the next frame.
"Signal Change" is meaningless.

boyoh wrote:Understanding the difference in games on a Pi to games on a gaming computer.
The graphics card on a gaming computer, draws high current from the power supply
The reason for this is very fast signals draw high current at the peak of signal change.
This can be very repetitive on some games. All this generates heat (Watts)
A high speed graphics card will have a large heat sinks a fan and higher wattage
rated components

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Tue Mar 15, 2016 3:56 pm

rzusman wrote:The power consumption of a graphic card during game play is due to all the hundreds of little processors on it all calculating the next frame.
"Signal Change" is meaningless.

boyoh wrote:Understanding the difference in games on a Pi to games on a gaming computer.
The graphics card on a gaming computer, draws high current from the power supply
The reason for this is very fast signals draw high current at the peak of signal change.
This can be very repetitive on some games. All this generates heat (Watts)
A high speed graphics card will have a large heat sinks a fan and higher wattage
rated components
Frame rate, also known as frame frequency, is the frequency (rate) at which an imaging device displays consecutive images called frames.
All electrically generated signals Time-varying Currents and Voltages
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Tue Mar 15, 2016 4:02 pm

boyoh wrote:
rzusman wrote:The power consumption of a graphic card during game play is due to all the hundreds of little processors on it all calculating the next frame.
"Signal Change" is meaningless.

boyoh wrote:Understanding the difference in games on a Pi to games on a gaming computer.
The graphics card on a gaming computer, draws high current from the power supply
The reason for this is very fast signals draw high current at the peak of signal change.
This can be very repetitive on some games. All this generates heat (Watts)
A high speed graphics card will have a large heat sinks a fan and higher wattage
rated components
Frame rate, also known as frame frequency, is the frequency (rate) at which an imaging device displays consecutive images called frames.
All electrically generated signals Time-varying Currents and Voltages
Well, yes, but the frame rate is a direct consequence of hundred of little processors calculating triangles like mad. Any silicon consists of millions or billions of transistors, working away. The more of them there are, the more work is done and the more heat is produced. In a GPU those transistors work out triangles, texture maps etc, usually using a massively parallel system (hence lots of little processors)
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Taxicletter
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:29 pm

DougieLawson wrote:
Taxicletter wrote: I know the Raspberry Pi is no PowerBook, but what can I expect in terms of programs I can run?
I think you'll be shocked by the RPi3B, it's got more MIPS per square centimetre than ANY other computer I've ever used. (Especially compared to my 2012 vintage smart phone.)
What are MIPS?
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Tue Mar 22, 2016 5:28 am

Millions of Instructions Per Second.

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Tue Mar 22, 2016 6:18 pm

rzusman wrote:Millions of Instructions Per Second.
Bzzzt, wrong. Meaningless indicators of processor speed.

We don't use those in mainframe land now, it's a been replaced with another mythical measurement the MSU (millions of service units). Intel MIPS can't be compared to S/370 (aka zSeries) MIPS or ARM MIPS because their instruction sets are wildly different.

But that aside, we're getting an incredible amount of computer power from a physically small machine.
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 24, 2016 10:20 am

Because this thread began to drift off and no new reactions where comming, I thought I'd start a new topic (with a new intake: system info). Apparently not the right choice.

So, I posted some system info to know if everything was OK with my Pi / configuration:
viewtopic.php?f=91&t=141556.

Maybe I forgot some important info:

Processor
  • Name
    Hardware %s
    Features (null)
    BogoMips 38,00
    Endianesss Little Endian
Memory
  • Total Memory 948012 kB
    Free Memory 45488 kB
    MemAvailable 574732 kB
    Buffers 111648 kB
    Cached 268300 kB
    Cached Swap 0 kB
    Active 524180 kB
    Inactive 159440 kB
    Active(anon) 255496 kB
    Inactive(anon) 58284 kB
    Active(file) 268684 kB
    Inactive(file) 101156 kB
    Unevictable 0 kB
    Mlocked 0 kB
    Virtual Memory 102396 kB
    Free Virtual Memory 102396 kB
    Dirty 4 kB
    Writeback 0 kB
    AnonPages 303656 kB
    Mapped 132024 kB
    Shmem 10064 kB
    Slab 201200 kB
    SReclaimable 190124 kB
    SUnreclaim 11076 kB
    KernelStack 2032 kB
    PageTables 4168 kB
    NFS_Unstable 0 kB
    Bounce 0 kB
    WritebackTmp 0 kB
    CommitLimit 576400 kB
    Committed_AS 1538152 kB
    VmallocTotal 1105920 kB
    VmallocUsed 3244 kB
    VmallocChunk 881788 kB
    CmaTotal 8192 kB
    CmaFree 2888 kB
Resources
I/O Ports
Memory
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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 24, 2016 11:41 am

1) Backup your SD card
2) Enable the experimental 3D driver via raspi-config
and watch for speedups - it should accelerate 2D indirectly too


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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 24, 2016 11:59 am

Thank you ghans.

I tried using the 3D driver, but that made my system flash black screens/freezes and freeze completely after a few minutes.

I was reading the Q&A and at the top they say something about using a new raspberry power suplly (2,5 A), I bought mine like 2 weeks ago (2 A). Could that make a difference?

Edit:
I just enabled the 3D driver again, I'll let you know if that does the trick!
--::--::- 3 x Raspberry Pi 3 - Raspbian Lite 9 - RuneAudio - one broke (wifi) - not in use -::--::--

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Re: What to expect (how powerful is the Raspberry?)

Thu Mar 24, 2016 5:21 pm

Until now: no more of the glitches and freezes. I think I experience a slightly faster desktop, but that could be the power of suggestion as well :-).
--::--::- 3 x Raspberry Pi 3 - Raspbian Lite 9 - RuneAudio - one broke (wifi) - not in use -::--::--

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