Which laptop GPU's are supported with ubuntu & ultrawide screens


I need to send my computer to warranty, and I need to get a replacement for that one. I also have a Samsung G9 49’’ display. I already researched Ubuntu and ultrawide issues, so I know I need a laptop with HDMI 2.0 or HDMI 2.1 connectors. So, I have some questions- because I’ve heard some horror stories of Nvidia support for Ubuntu. I used to have a Dell XPS with a Nvidia card, and even though I got some games to run on it, it was always difficult. So:

  • Which of the newer RTX cards are supported by Ubuntu Nvidia drivers? Or, more importantly, are there some that will not work with Ubuntu 22.04 and Samsung G9 screens? Mind, I don’t care about getting 240 hz out of it. If I get 120hz, I’m already happy
  • Will everything work out of the box with most Nvidia cards, or do I need to do some Googling and run a bunch of ssh commands to get everything working? I’m fine with getting my hands dirty as long as I know it will work out in the end if I follow some guides.

All the best.

Very difficult to give an advice, depends on many things
The G9 has a resolution of 5120x1440, at 120Hz this results in a pixelclock of ~890MHz which is too much for an uncompressed HDMI 2.0 connection (600MHz).
While all nvidia gpus starting with Ampere (Geforce RTX3xxx, RTX Axxxx) support hdmi 2.1, on optimus notebooks it’s unknown before purchase to which gpu the external outputs are routed. e.g. when routed to the intel igpu, the hdmi port is just supporting hdmi 2.0. So you should rather check the notebook has a DisplayPort 1.4 output, e.g. through USB-C and use that.
Regarding ubuntu installation, the main pitfall is actually the other hardware (cpu/igpu/wifi etc.) defining the minimum kernel version/firmware needed. The usual setup would be to start Ubuntu install, choose HWE kernel, choose “Install third party software” to enable support for secure boot and see if everything works afterwards. If not, you might have to start over, disable secure boot, add the liquorix ppa to get the latest kernel etc.

Thank you! I’m already learning a lot from your response.

So I understood this ( please correct me if I’m wrong)

I should look for a laptop which has HDMI 2.1. Or instead, look for DisplayPort 1.4 output ( and that would work through USB-C)

As for other hardware, how would I go about picking the complete set of hardware that would work with ubuntu? Should it be Intel + Nvidia setup? Should it be instead AMD + Nvidia setup? How do I pick which HW should I buy?


That’s a bigger problem since most vendors simply don’t tell about their hdmi port standard. You have a better chance the DP version is in the datasheet.

From observation / other user’s experience in this forum I can tell you should avoid nvidia-only notebooks. Also, “Advanced Optimus” notebooks have a specific issue unrelated to the nvidia driver (dual backlight control, gnome/kde only handling one, if that didn’t change meanwhile) which is inconvenient. Intel/AMD should be on-par now, if recent cpus are picked.

Seems these have all the stuff I need: ROG - Republic of Gamers|Global | For Those Who Dare They are rather pricy though.

Thank you for the information, generix!

But those are “Advanced Optimus” devices, so prepare for fiddling getting your backlight control working.

ah fuck. Thank you!

How do I know which ones are and which ones are not? Do I need to care about them if I don’t care the least bit about the backlight?

Usually, “Advanced Optimus” is also used for marketing, so I guess every vendor uses it if their notebook supports it.
Also, it’s not really a show-stopper, I called it “inconvenient” since you have to use another backlight control application instead of the built-in keys.
but then, how often do you change the brightness of your display? Not that often, I guess.

If they’re pricey, they’re most likely Advanced Optimus.

Thank you! you’ve been very helpful!