Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Based on the following site:

I need the following minimum spec to play 1080p flash video via a browser:

CPU: 1.8GHz Intel Core Duo, AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+, or faster processor 
RAM: 512MB of RAM
GPU: 64MB of graphics memory

I only have a 2.8GHz Pentium 4 process which is no where near as good as the processor listed above. I don't want to upgrade my processor as I think it will mean I have to change the motherboard etc. So, my question is, what is the cheapest PCI-E GPU I can buy which will allow me to play smooth 1080p flash video via a browser. I think the cheapest I can get is the 8400GS, but am not sure if that will be able to handle 1080p with the processor I have. I have looked at the GT520 and was wondering if this is the cheapest GPU which I need, or if there is something cheaper which will do 1080p with a 2.8GHz Pentium 4. Or, will I have to get something better than a GT520?

share|improve this question
possible duplicate of Is the GT430/GT520 enough for 1080p flash? – James Henstridge Jun 28 '11 at 15:26
I think you'll have to get a new CPU, as the operations performed by accelerated flash on GPU and CPU are different. You're CPU is the performance bottleneck, I don't expect a faster GPU will alleviate the situation. – krondor Jun 28 '11 at 15:42
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I have an Intel i7 920. It's not very new or was it the top of its class when it was released but it's close. It's a very fast CPU by any measure. It also has a Nvidia GTX 580 strapped to it. I say this not to boast (you should see my poor bank balance) but just to get the point across, I'm talking about a powerful system.

It struggles with 1080p Flash.

If you need flawless performance, ignore the system requirements because they're likely idealised for Windows. Flash Player's performance has, at least for the past and the present, been awful, whatever your hardware.

Hardware acceleration with Flash in Linux is also a billion times less certain than in Windows. I don't see any help from the CPU with videos on my Nvidia card. There may be some cards that can do it for you - but I don't know one that works for certain.

The best thing you can do is to take Flash player out of the equation. I don't know what your usage is going to be but you might want to look at tools like rtmpstreamer or HTML5 video (YouTube and other sites are starting to support this on more videos).

Flash Player still has a long way to go.

share|improve this answer
Is your computer struggling with 1080p flash when using chromium with flash 10.3 on ubuntu? Why would adobe specify system requirements for Linux if they are to be ignored? – oshirowanen Jun 29 '11 at 10:06
@oshirowanen I think Adobe sees it as a target. There are some cases where hardware h.264 acceleration works and I'm sure these specs are more accurate there. It probably doesn't help that I use Compiz but I'd rather have the occasional choppy video and desktop effects than the other way around. – Oli Jun 29 '11 at 13:46

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.