New Hardware

Recently I got equipped with a shiny new Lattitude D830. It came with a WUXGA display and nVidia’s latest Quadro NVS 140M monster to fill all those pixels. After having read some installation reports I decided to install gutsy on this machine.

The installation went smoothly and (although I haven’t done thorough testing) everything seems to run out of the box. Well, except for sound. A common workaround for this is to compile a current alsa-driver snapshot. It didn’t work for me at first as for the gutsy gibbon the snd-hda-intel module is now being installed in a non-standard position:
Which caused a conflict with my newly installed version. After deleting the ubuntu module sound works, however the volume control does not always behave as expected.

Overall, performance is very nice, however it is really frustrating that even with such a powerful machine it is not possible to play one of Apple’s full HD clips without frame drops. Unfortunately it seems like we will not be seeing anything from nVidia in terms of hardware acceleration in the near future – for now I’m hoping that ffmpeg will introduce multithreading support for h264 decoding some time soon (this thread on ffmpeg-devel looks promising).

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