Best phones for games: here is how powerful graphics in our mobile devices really are
To measure performance right you need to get the whole package right - not just the graphics, but also the processor, the screen and so many other elements. Here, though, we aim to take a look at just the graphics part and understand how much of a graphics oomph smartphones can deliver, and how does it compare to consoles, laptops and desktops.
For that, we turn to measuring GFlops, a way to put mobile and desktop GPUs on par and compare them. For instance, the measurement from devices like the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One show performance in the vicinity of 50 GFlops (the higher, the better). The new Apple iPhone 5s takes that to a whole new level with its PowerVR G6430 chip scoring 76.8GFlops. In comparison, consoles like the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 score around 230 GFlops. From a monumental difference we’re seeing how quickly mobile is catching up.
You can see the full evolution of smartphone graphics and their performance, and get the full picture right at the link below. Here, we’ll just link the names of some popular handsets with their graphics card for you to understand how they rate.
Phone/Platform - GPU - Approximate GFlops
- Samsung Galaxy Nexus - PowerVR SGX 540 - 6.1 GFlops
- Average white box Chinese phone - MT6589 - 9.2
- Advanced white box Chinese phone - MT6589T - 11.4
- Apple iPhone 5 - SGX543 MP3 (w/ Apple A6) - 28.8
- Early 2013 Android flagship (HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4) - Adreno 320 (w/ Snapdragon 600) ~ 51.2
- Average Tegra 4 device - 72
- Apple iPad 4 - SGX554 MP4 (w/ Apple A6X) - 76.8
- Apple iPhone 5s - PowerVR G6430 (w/ Apple A7) - 76.8
- Sony Playstation 3 - Nvidia G70 - 228.8
- XBOX 360 - ATI R500 Xenos - 240
- XBOX One - AMD GCN2.0 - 1240
- Sony Playstation 4 - AMD GCN2.0 - 1840
1. itsdeepak4u2000 (Posts: 2689; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)
Title is somewhat mismatched as best phones for games.
58. AwesomestMaximuss (Posts: 117; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)
I am interested in Galaxy Note 3 octa version....it is supposed to be powered with Exynos 5420 which has Mali-T628 MP6...should be pretty powerful...
2. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4138; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)
STILL a ways off, compared to consoles.
17. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5845; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
More than just a ways off when comparing the latest smartphone to the latest console. 76.8 (5S) vs. 1,840 (PS4), has the PS4 running away and hiding from the 5S.
32. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4138; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)
Yeah I was trying to be PC here. lol
38. Dr.Phil (Posts: 914; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
Well according to the numbers posted later on, we have caught up to the processing power of the PS Vita's GPU. I would say that's a good place to be, although I wish developers would create more graphical games. I mean look at what the PS Vita is capable of:
What's amazing is that the Adreno 320 matches the PS Vita in performance, and the Adreno 330 should be up there at least on par with the Tegra 4 (I believe Qualcomm said to expect a 50% performance increase over the Adreno 320). I just wish we had more games out there like Infinity Blade.
41. Rehankhan (Posts: 323; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)
do you not know that you need big budget to makes AAA games like uncharted abyss,killzone mercenary,assassin's creed liberation most of mobile games cost $0.99 the games you mentioned above retails at $39.99 i dont think many people would be interested to own games at that price just so they can play on that tiny 4" touchscreen
45. Dr.Phil (Posts: 914; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
Calm down there buddy. I simply stated I would like to see more graphical games like Infinity Blade. I don't think that is such a far-fetched idea. The reason I put the PS Vita screenshots on there was to show everyone what our smartphones are capable of in terms of graphics quality. Please read my comment again and do not try to add something to it that wasn't there. I never stated we needed $40 games or that we needed AAA games like Uncharted or Killzone.
52. normedia1 (Posts: 4; Member since: 12 Apr 2013)
you also conviently forgot to put Snapdragon 800 devices in there as well. These should hover in the 80+ GFLOPS as well.
53. Dr.Phil (Posts: 914; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
Are you talking about me or to the writer of this article? I did mention the Snapdragon 800 in my original comment:
"What's amazing is that the Adreno 320 matches the PS Vita in performance, and the Adreno 330 should be up there at least on par with the Tegra 4 (I believe Qualcomm said to expect a 50% performance increase over the Adreno 320)."
The Snapdragon 800 is a CPU, the Adreno 330 is the GPU paired with the 800. I mentioned it should at least be on par with the Tegra 4 which surpasses the PS Vita by about a 50% increase in performance.
59. picka_vi_materina (Posts: 164; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)
Wrong! Snapdragon 800 is the SoC (System on Chip). This is represented by the CPU (Krait 400), RAM, GPU (Adreno 330), network processors, etc. All that is considered the Snapdragon 800.
62. Dr.Phil (Posts: 914; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
Congrats, you got me on two wrong words! It doesn't take away from the point of my comment which was to say that I did mention something about the Snapdragon 800. I'm so sorry that I actually have a busy work day that I occasionally will let a mistake slip by. I'm sure you can find it in your heart to forgive me.
46. Dr.Phil (Posts: 914; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
And also, I wasn't just commenting about wanting games like Infinity Blade for the iPhone or iPad. I was also commenting that I wanted to see more games like Infinity Blade released for Android and Windows Phone as well.
In all honesty, I would like Sony to try and make a new Xperia Play. The original Xperia Play was released at the wrong time. The mobile game market was still immature and the hardware wasn't that great. If they released a new one with access to the Playstation store as well as some Vita games, I think people would buy it. I would probably buy it. That's just my opinion though.
3. Ninetysix (Posts: 1659; Member since: 08 Oct 2012)
76.8 GFLOPS for the iPhone 5S (PowerVR G6430)
5. Victor.H (Posts: 439; Member since: 27 May 2011)
Awesome, thanks, this has been added as well!
11. SGSatlantis (Posts: 205; Member since: 20 Jul 2011)
You should include the PS Vita score as a reference since it's the most current gen mobile gaming console. 51.2
60. picka_vi_materina (Posts: 164; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)
Vita uses a SGX543MP4+. We have no idea what the + stands for and what the operating frequency of this GPU is. It might as well be running at 600MHz. Who knows.
9. Ninetysix (Posts: 1659; Member since: 08 Oct 2012)
In theory, the adreno 330 is supposed to be faster than the G6430. The benchmarks showed different results though when the S800/Adreno 330 is tested on the LG G2 which trailed behind the 5S.
23. addicted2088 (Posts: 50; Member since: 25 Sep 2012)
Not surprising, considering all the bloat the G2 (or a Samsung device) has to handle. Not to mention iOS is optimized awesomely.
26. Samsungadroidrules (Posts: 104; Member since: 28 Jul 2013)
Blah! what ever, go home and play your boring iPhone 5.lol
28. addicted2088 (Posts: 50; Member since: 25 Sep 2012)
Eh? I own a Nexus 5, and I love Android, but if you're going to be a fanboy and hater and not accept that iOS is optimized nicely, go back to school and learn some sense. Oh wait, forgot they don't teach sense in school.
51. blingblingthing (Posts: 436; Member since: 23 Oct 2012)
This iOS being optimised is overblown. You won't see great looking ps3 games on a PS2. That's mainly due to power. As weak on paper an iPhone cpu may seem. They historically have had some pretty powerful GPUs. 3 core GPU in iPhone 5 and now a quad core in the iPhone 5s. Mix that with a sub HD resolution and you have a powerful GPU to draw less pixels than the 1080 p competition.
61. picka_vi_materina (Posts: 164; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)
G6430 works its muscles at a much lower frequency than a 330, which makes it quite more powerful.
43. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)
I was looking for this the other day, I found 129.4 GFLOPS from two websites (one was dutch) take it with a grain of salt but that's what I found.
48. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)
treme/2.1030/1.514775/snapdrag on-800--sa-snabb-ar-hetaste-mobilprocessorn#;article:1.514 775
For anybody curious. As to where.
16. _Bone_ (Posts: 2132; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
Victor, these lads calculated the Mali T628 MP6 (to be shipped with the Exynos 5420 variant of the Galaxy Note III and Note 10.1 2014 edition) as 108.7 GFlops:
18. Victor.H (Posts: 439; Member since: 27 May 2011)
Thanks, much appreciated! Those theoretical calculations look about right, but we'd rather wait for more information about the Mali T628 before publishing the results. We'll update when we have more on this!
20. _Bone_ (Posts: 2132; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
Yes, it's better to go with a more official one. Wikipedia list the MP6 @ 600MHz at 115,2 GFLOPS, but i'm not sure Samsung actually did announce the GPU for the 5420.
25. TylerGrunter (Posts: 963; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
You should take the 102.34 GFLOPs
6 * SIMD16 * 2 FLOPs * 0.533GHz = 102.34 GFLOPs
As the calculations in the original table are Anand-like, that is without the TMUs (Texture Mapping units), and only calculating the Pixel/Vertex shaders power.
63. hmmm... (Posts: 56; Member since: 05 Jun 2013)
Hmm... here is a link that differentiate the performance of adreno 320 with s4 pro and s600. The s4 pro with adreno 320 is close to the result you showed. Adreno 330 has about 130 gigaflops. Not really sure if the source can be trusted. I can't post links yet, not enough post, but you can search it on the japanese language wiki. search for 'FLOPS'
6. Shatter (Posts: 2030; Member since: 29 May 2013)
7 years old and still better.
A high end single desktop card, the 780 can hit 4 teradflops with an overclock. And has next gen cards being announced tommrow, phone aren't even comparable to next gen/PC.
15. Rehankhan (Posts: 323; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)
exactly its impressive how these 7/8 old console still give us mindblowing graphics in games like gtav/last of us/uncharted/red dead redeption and next gen console already cost less than flagship phone its no brainer to buy smartphone for games
12. Rehankhan (Posts: 323; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)
there is no phone that can give you console like graphics unless you are talking about ps2 and original xbox why not just buy a $200 ps3/xbox 360 if you really want to play games even less powerfull vita is better for gaming than these smatphones
13. imparanoic (Posts: 68; Member since: 15 Oct 2012)
slightly unfair comparison, home consoles vs mobile phones/tablet, surely ps vita and 3ds is much better comparision
R4000 x 2
XGPU (Geforce 3+)
ATI R500 Xenos
RSX (NVIDIA G70)
Geforce ULP x 12
19. Victor.H (Posts: 439; Member since: 27 May 2011)
Great, thanks for those numbers! The idea is to give a bird-eye view of GPU performance across different platforms, not so much to compare with mobile consoles.
21. DukeX (Posts: 327; Member since: 28 Aug 2013)
Don't mobile gpus support advanced shaders? If you look at games like dead trigger you will notice the environment lacks detail. It reminds me of the original call of duty. The character models are great but once you get close they also lack detail. It's the same with shadow gun.
22. nlbates66 (Posts: 301; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)
it's not quite as simple as just picking and comparing numbers...
27. Samsungadroidrules (Posts: 104; Member since: 28 Jul 2013)
Samsung S4, Great for Gaming! :)
36. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
Also those GPUs with custom Kernels can be clocked up to 800Mhz
40. haseebzahid (Posts: 1831; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
nah its not you always wory about battery in the end unless you pluged just like the console and still get 7 years old graphics if you use to play lastest console/PC games these nwest games on moblies will be gimics although they are good TIME-PASS
29. grahaman27 (Posts: 347; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)
Snapdragon 800 anywhere? I know it scores over 100 gflops
BTW Kepler will change everything next year
30. imparanoic (Posts: 68; Member since: 15 Oct 2012)
gaming more than just visuals, real tactile feel and precise control is just as important
sony xperia phones seems to focus on gaming, native dual support is the key. a real joypad and one that is much much better than all those wannabe gaming pad manufacturers, only if hori release mobile joypads then that would be even better.
I wonder if Microsoft offer the same for their recently purchased nokia mobile via xbox 360 pad support
31. papss (unregistered)
Hmm who ever thought gaming on cells was a great idea is just silly. The touch screen just isn't responsive enough and has no feedback. As a gamer I laugh at the thought that this is a viable solution for playing games. I guess my opinion is just that.. My opinion.
33. DukeX (Posts: 327; Member since: 28 Aug 2013)
Then your not a real gamer then. I've been gaming since i was 5. I'm 23 now. I enjoy all kinds of gaming. We are now to a point where mobile games are just if not more feature rich as handhelds games like gba,psp,vita,3ds. I'm not saying mobile gaming will overtake consoles/PCs but they are not something to underestimate. There was even a handheld that came out in the 90s that was supposed to have a touch screen. I don't remember the name of it but it was never implemented because of cost issues. On a side note i have personally beat games on a touch screen like Megaman X-3,Metal slug with one credit,Super mario bros 3,Fzero gp legend,and even all of the megaman zero. This one done through emulation. Yes it is very difficult to control games like those on a touch screen but once you learn your handeye coordination will skyrocket.
49. papss (unregistered)
So you must know me? Right... Kid I've been gaming since before you were alive. Game play is everything and phones don't have that so to me gaming on phones is pretty weak
37. mrmessma (Posts: 57; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)
And here I am sitting with my 2 year old computer with over 4k that I built for under $600...
39. livyatan (Posts: 697; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)
The PowerVR GPU in iPad 5 will have around 150GFLOPS, but combined with 2Gb of DDR3 RAM, it should be capable of better performance than PS3/Xbox 360.
And the upcoming Kepler ULP GeForce in Tegra 5 should offer incredible numbers - up to 350GFLOPS, with phone versions cracking the 200GFLOP barrier in H1 next year.
Btw the Adreno 330 is the first phone GPU to have crossed the 100GFLOPS.
44. AKumar47 (Posts: 48; Member since: 11 Sep 2013)
just waiting for the phoneblock, haha! with a adreno 1200 in a snapdragon 2000, 5'' hd res with a 5k mah juice... haha! with a changeable oses...
64. LumiaLover (Posts: 160; Member since: 27 Sep 2012)
its a Chinese phone in a white box..silly!!