NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 Open Source Gets 3D Support

April 5, 2013 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Most of us that have had a Tegra 3 device already know that the chip can handle 3D, unless you’re working on a open source project around NVIDIA’s last generation chip. If you’ve been working on a open source project of the Tegra 3 you’ve been stuck in a flat world. There are some new contributions coming from Avionic Design’s Thierry Reding which have brought the third dimension back, although it is in a limited form.

Avionic had some early patches for the Linux kernel which enabled support for 3D when using the Tegra Direct Rendering Manager driver. Now there is also a matching Gallium3D driver for us regular users. It is still young, but it can run reference 3D code as of a recent check, but it’s unable to produce visible imagery. It might take some time before everything falls into place though, the officially backed work should make the chip much more useful for devices using the Tegra 3 chip running both Android and Windows RT.

There are some forked versions found over on GitHub which include Mesa, libdrm, and grate which supports the open source NVIDIA Tegra driver from the user space side. And the Mesa repository has an initial Gallium3D driver for Tegra.

Some of those devices include the international HTC One X, Nexus 7, and most of ASUS’ Transformer line, on the Android side. There are a few Windows RT devices that use Tegra 3 chips, but since we aren’t Windows RT fans, we don’t really know what they are. You can find more information in the source links at the bottom of this post.

How many of you have Tegra 3 devices? How do they perform for you? Are you using an open source project on the Tegra 3? Let us know in the comments down below.

Source: Phoronix, Freedesktop.org, Github