165 Hz not available under X11

A couple years ago, I bought a Philips Momentum monitor as a secondary display for my Zorin laptop. It supports frame rates of up to 165 Hz, but under X11, I only get:

  • 60 Hz in Firefox
  • 90 Hz in Brave

according to TestUFO. What can I do about that? Thank you!

165 Hz is supported by Wayland, but it's too unstable for me, so I can't use it:


My display settings (X11):

me@zorin:~$ uname -a
Linux dell-zorin 6.5.0-41-generic #41~22.04.2-Ubuntu SMP PREEMPT_DYNAMIC Mon Jun  3 11:32:55 UTC 2 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

I don't know if it will make any differece, but the general advice is to avoid any nvidia driver that has 'tested' (getestet) mentioned - any other but those!

Further, reading this article:

165 Hz is only capable if you use a Display Port cable, not HDMI.

I tried it with different drivers, but that did not change anything. Also, on Wayland 165 Hz worked without special driver setup.

165 Hz worked perfectly fine via HDMI under Wayland, just not under X11. The manufacturer's manual for the monitor explicitly states that 165 Hz works both via HDMI and Display Port:

See if the xrandr solution here sorts it:

https://www.reddit.com/r/linux_gaming/comments/pg3wqt/my_165hz_monitor_is_not_being_detected_as_such

A few years ago, I bought a Full-HD Philips Momentum monitor as a secondary, external screen for my Zorin laptop that, until today, ran X11. Since the Momentum monitor (24") is physically much bigger than the laptop's built-in 12.5" display, I changed the display settings as follows after buying the monitor:

Built-in monitor External Momentum monitor
Primary monitor yes no
Resolution 2560x1600 px 1920x1080 px
Refresh rate 59.99 Hz 165.00 Hz
Scaling 175 % 100 %
Fractional scaling enabled
(barely noticably blurry on X11)
disabled

Note that I only set the fractional scaling to 175% because with 200% the mouse would constanly flicker. The trade-off is that, with fractional scaling, windows look a tiny bit less sharp than without it, but barely noticably.

Recently, I noticed that Wayland is available under Zorin 17 and immediately tried it out. However, I've noticed a couple issues:

Scaling issues

With the above settings, some non-native applications look very blurry on the built-in monitor (all system apps and some non-native apps are displayed sharply though).

Blurry applications on the built-in monitor. They're displayed perfectly sharply on the external monitor or with fractional scaling disabled. Zoom in and compare to the task bar which is also very sharp.

That's why I tried turning fractional scaling off and to set the regular scaling for the built-in monitor to 200%. Now,

  • the scaling on the external Momentum monitor is also 200%, although it is explicitly set to 100% in the settings! (when setting the built-in monitor's scaling to 100%, then that is also applied to the external monitor)
  • the program icons in the task bar have become tiny (on both screens)
  • the Bluetooth icon in the quick settings has become tiny (both screens)
  • the date menu is so large that it's cut off at the top edge of the screen (Momentum monitor)

My current settings:

Built-in monitor External Momentum monitor
Primary monitor yes no
Resolution 2560x1600 px 1920x1080 px
Refresh rate 59.99 Hz 165.00 Hz
Scaling 200 % 100 % (no effect)
Fractional scaling disabled (not blurry anymore) disabled

Everything is giant on the external monitor now:

Other issues with Wayland

  • In Zorin Appearance, I can't open the task bar settings anymore. Clicking on the gear icon does nothing.
  • Flameshot doesn't work anymore and says it "can't capture this area".
  • CopyQ doesn't save my clipboard history anymore.

Is there a work-around to circumvent these issues?

Wayland is not fully evolve yet, it may require some years to be where X11 is now.

Switch layout - Not all layouts have settings

As I recall it, it won't work under wayland.

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Opening the task bar settings by clicking on the gear icon works fine with the same layout under X11. :thinking:

Must be a bug then. I still uses X11 as I'm having Nvidia cards.

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i have to second this. I too use a Nvidia GPU (4060) and had various issues (including performance issues) on Wayland. (Wayland worked, but not properly in any of my tasks)

My conclusion is that Kernel 6.5.0 and Jammy 22.04 is the reason. Alltho that is not confirmed. Resorted back to X11 and everything works as expected.

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Why do Nvidia cards necessitate X11? :face_with_monocle: (My Dell Inspiron 7400 has a GeForce MX350.)

Because Nvidia uses close source driver and they are slow on the beat improving them. My next card is going to be AMD.

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Interestingly enough, I just installed my new laptop with has a 4070 in it and was having similar issues. I updated to the 555 Nvidia drivers, and I am no longer having the issues. Fractional scaling was also an issue with the 535 and 545 drivers with the 4070, whereas on my other laptop with the 3070 had no issue. Unfortunately, just the normal dance with Nvidia.

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Christopher saying something else.

Maybe he should spend some time around here to see just how often Wayland is the source of frustration. This is not to say that Wayland is broken, but it sure isn't ready to be the future that everyone insists on promoting... since 2008 :man_shrugging:

That gist you shared seems to agree with @Storm (emphasis of mine):

Apparently Wayland relies on nouveau drivers for NVidia hardware. The nouveau driver has been giving unsatisfactory performance since its inception. Even clicking on the application starter icon in Gnome results in a stuttery animation. Only the proprietary NVidia driver results in full performance.

See below.

Update 2024: The situation might slowly be improving. It remains to be seen whether this will work well also for all existing old Nvidia hardware (that works well in Xorg).

Correct my nvidia cards don't have problems on Xorg.
Wayland some people are excited but propably it could be some time expansion how it is wonderfull.
You know how business working if you cannot selling something what working perfect then stop support take a little a money put in projects what sitting in one place - take a hypes and selling with bugs. How often you buying a product and when it must working properly it gived you headeach, pain and back to past things what just working like Xorg and XFCE4. That mean's the corporation want not support old things and put for some new things and testing and all time talking it every day is better. Well ok but isn't in operating system the 3 things must be cooperate together? Monitor,gpu and drivers what can be usable with high resolution and Hz? We all know the apple using rec 2022 but in internet all videos mostly using old technology rec.709
Then where is the hack if you want telling people we have new future but when we know, people who interesting with Texas Instruments how it works from 80-teen years. The same was in audio logo Hi-Fi i remember you thinking it is better or dolby atmos what people sayed this is business what is still Dolby Surround. Well I could be little missunderstanding something. The diffrents was a price but nothing changed in audio technology. The same for me is Wayland trying doing something new but still in old methods.

It is a Wayland Thing. In the newest Gnome and KDE Desktop Versions and Nvidia Driver is a new Tech called Explicit Sync. That should make that Nividia cards and Wayland work better together.

But that is for Zorin not relevant because on Zorin the Gnome Version is 43.9. Even if you would install the Nvidia Driver 555 with Explicit Sync Support it wouldn't change anything related to that because in Gnome 43 it isn't built-in. Only the Driver itself could bring Improvements. But that depends on the Hardware I guess.

So, if You don't have the newest Gnome/KDE Desktop and Nvidia Driver Versions Xorg is a better choice for Nvidia that Wayland.

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So driver 555 is a beta that supposingly fixes many of the issues with Wayland, 560 is the public and full release for 555 "when its ready". And supposingly will be the first full proper driver with Wayland support (if i recall correctly)

I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens. But things are looking way better for Nvidia GPU owners NOW than what it did a year ago.

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