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Old 04-05-2011, 12:40 PM   #1
thund3rstruck
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Subtle Wavy Lines in display


I didn't really notice this problem until I started using my Linux Mint Laptop (Acer Aspire 5672 WLMi) to develop some software but when I look at my screen really closely there appears to be wavy horizontal lines constantly running up and down the screen.

This is a default Linux Mint machine so I'm thinking that perhaps I need to install a proper ATI video driver?

Here is some detail of the graphics adapter:

Code:
$ inxi -G
Graphics:  Card ATI Radeon Mobility X1400 X.Org 1.7.6 Res: 1280x800@59.9hz GLX Renderer Mesa DRI R300 (RV515 7145) 20090101 x86/MMX/SSE2 TCL DRI2 GLX Version 1.5 Mesa 7.7.1
I'm looking through the Xorg logs (/var/log/xorg.0.log) and it looks like the OS is loading ATI drivers but I'm not quite sure if I'm seeing this correctly?

Code:
(II) RADEON: Driver for ATI Radeon chipsets:
...
ATI Mobility Radeon X1400, ATI Radeon X1300/X1550,
...
I'm not really sure what to do at this point. These wavy lines are getting irritating but I don't want to spin off in another direction and break my display all together if I dork something up.

From a distance the screen looks great but upon close inspection there are subtle horizontal lines constantly moving from the bottom to the top of the screen.

Any ideas?
 
Old 04-05-2011, 01:11 PM   #2
stress_junkie
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If this is a CRT then pressing the degauss button for ten seconds might help.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 01:33 PM   #3
thund3rstruck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stress_junkie View Post
If this is a CRT then pressing the degauss button for ten seconds might help.
Nah, its the built in display on an Acer Aspire 5672 WLMi laptop.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 02:02 PM   #4
Mr. Bill
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There should be a monitor refresh rate setting in the monitor/screen resolution menu (i.e. 60hz - 75hz). try changing to the next higher setting. The default is not always the best with all hardware.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 03:17 PM   #5
thund3rstruck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Bill View Post
There should be a monitor refresh rate setting in the monitor/screen resolution menu (i.e. 60hz - 75hz). try changing to the next higher setting. The default is not always the best with all hardware.
Thanks for the tip. Unfortunately 60Hz is the only setting available using:

Code:
$ gnome-display-properties
 
Old 04-05-2011, 11:42 PM   #6
cascade9
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Mint 9 (based on ubuntu 10.04)? With a x1300/x1400.

Its probably the open source ATI/AMD drivers. The proprietary/closed source ATI/AMD drivers wont work with that GPU on any linux mint release past 6 or 7, so any newer mint release could be having the same problem.

I've never tried this with mint, or seen any posts about people doing it (I havent searched though), so I cant say for sure it would work, but I'd try adding the xorg-edgers PPA.

Add this to your software sources-

ppa:xorg-edgers/ppa

Then update, that should get you the newer drivers.

Warning! Because I've never tried it, there is a chance it could bork your system. I'd doubt it would, but hey, better warned about possible problems than not, right?

Last edited by cascade9; 04-05-2011 at 11:44 PM.
 
Old 04-06-2011, 06:40 AM   #7
thund3rstruck
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@cascade9,

Great suggestion! That one is going into my Linux notebook.

I ended up disabling 'compiz' effects and restarted and now there appears to be no more tearing. (I wish I had a better way to articulate the symptom but its hard to describe). Everything is looking good for the moment (knock on wood).

Thanks everyone for your tips!
 
Old 04-06-2011, 12:05 PM   #8
cascade9
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thund3rstruck, just so you know- the reason why Mint 8, 9 and 10 (and ubuntu up to 10.10 , possibly later, I'll withhold judgment on 11.04 untill its released, but it should be good for ATI/AMD) might have problems with the open source drivers is because the serious work on the open drivers started after ATI/AMD pulled support for the proprietary drivers on pre-radeon HD cards (around late 2008 IIRC).

The open source drivers have got a huge amount better in the 2009-late 2010 period. So 11.04, and Mint based on 11.04 and later versions should have much better support out of the box. 9.04-10.10 dont have very good ATI/AMD open source drivers out of the box, thats why xorg-edgers (which get you the newest driver versions) helps with earlier releases.

If I'm right and 11.04 has much better open source ATI/AMD drivers out of the box, xorg-edgers shouldnt be needed in most, if any ATI/AMD hardware with no proprietary driver support. It might still help in some cases, but if you arent getting any problems with later versions its not worth the risk of adding a PPA for what will probably be minor improvements at best.
 
  


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