this is no help request. It's more a general thing.
I'm using a Thinkpad X201 with intel graphics i915. a docking station and an external LCD VGA monitor.
With Ubuntu (Unity), Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Linux Mint Cinnamon, Ubuntu Gnome I got screen flickering.
But not with Ubunte MATE. The worst is Xubuntu. I've tried all. Compton instead of the xfwm compositor, different settings like "tearfree" for the intel driver, adjusted h-sync and v-sync but the flickering is still there.
It's like waves coming from the bottom of the monitor going to the top. You can see it best on grey background or on color gradients.
In Ubuntu MATE are no "waves". The screen is stable, sharp and clear.
Any suggestions what Ubuntu MATE makes right and the other distros wrong?
Ubuntu MATE works perfect with all compositors. Also with compiz, that Unity is using, too. But in Unity the screen flickers, not in MATE.