Tegra 4 vs Snapdragon 800: who will be the dominant player on the chipset market this year
Nvidia Tegra 4
As previous Tegra chips, the Tegra 4 will once again be designed for high-end smartphones, and Nvidia is promising that it'll will really push the boundaries, not only in terms of pure performance, but features too. Arguably the most impressive demo that we saw was that of the new HDR photography capabilities made possible thanks to Tegra 4's excessive performance. If most of us "forget" about using HDR when we just want to snap a quick photo, due to the fact that it takes significantly longer to take such a shot, that is soon bound to change, as Nvidia promises that we'll be able to snap HDRs in about 0.2 seconds, which is a pretty decent timing, we have to admit. In fact, the processor is going to be so fast that the user will be seeing a real-time HDR feed from the camera before taking the shot, not a normal view. And since it's very likely that a lot of us will switch to HDR as their default shooting mode once this technology becomes available, it will indeed be quite valuable to see what the image is exactly going to look like before pressing the shutter.
The Nvidia Tegra 4 will be a remarkable technological achievement - in addition to the 4 CPU cores, it'll also pack a total of 72 GeForce GPU cores. All of this computational power is going to make features like HDR photography and 4K video recording/playback possible. In terms of numbers, the Tegra 4 promises to pack about 6 times the visual processing power of its predecessor. It is still unclear just how much of a performance boost there's going to be when executing standard tasks like browsing, but if the demos that Nvidia showed us are to be believed, there should be an overall performance boost of at least 2 times.
Thankfully, Nvidia has acknowledged the fact that this thing's going to be used in mobile devices, so it hasn't only worked on performance. The Tegra 4 chip is said to bring the quite decent 45% improvement in power management compared to Tegra 3.
An equally important news is that Nvidia is finally ready with its i500 Soft Modem, which means that it can now offer phone/tablet manufacturers a full chipset solution, complete with radios. Qualcomm is often preferred as an SoC supplier because its Snapdragon chips feature all the needed connectivity modules, but now Nvidia is doing basically the same, so things are bound to get very interesting.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 800
The chip maker promises that its Snapdragon 600, which is the direct upgrade point from the current S4 Pro, will deliver an overall system performance boost of about 40% compared to the S4 Pro. While that's fine, the Snapdragon 800 sounds even more exciting. The top offering in Qualcomm's 2013 catalog will sport the new Krait 400 quad-core CPU, which should be able to reach speeds of more than 2.3GHz per core. That should be enough to guarantee a performance boost of about 75% compared to the S4 Pro.
A new graphics chip, the Adreno 330, will be taking care of the graphical side of things. Compared to the Adreno 320, which is found in the S4 Pro, the Adreno 330 should be able to double the computational power. Тhe Adreno 330 will also support standards like OpenCL, OpenGL ES 3.0, Renderscript Compute and more, so users who end up rocking a Snapdragon-powered phone in late 2013 won't have to worry about game/app compatibility.
Like the Tegra 4, Qualcomm's finest will be powerful enough to support 4K video playback and recording, as well as better (faster) radios for LTE and Wi-Fi. What might have a bigger impact on the sales of these new Snapdragon processors, however, is Qualcomm's decision to invest in advertising its CPUs directly to the consumers. This way, it hopes that the processor will became a bigger factor for the mainstream consumer when choosing a new mobile device. We do think this is a smart choice, although we'll have to wait and see exactly how effective it's going to be. Meanwhile, Nvidia is already quite the name, so it probably doesn't have to worry too much about TV advertising at this point.
It's obvious that until we can spend some time with these chipsets and test them properly, we cannot conclude which one is going to perform better. Moreover, the responsiveness of each device will also heavily depend on the software platform and custom UI it uses, so having one powerful processor or another under the hood will not always guarantee the fluidity of the interface. All in all, we should be certain that both flagship chipsets, the Tegra 4 and Snapdragon 800, will be capable enough to power the next-generation of mobile phones and tablets, although we have to admit that Nvidia's proposition seems a tad more exciting at the moment. Not only because of its impressive features like the super-fast HDR shooting, but the fact that it will now be offered as a complete chipset solution as well (with radios and all), which might lead to some quite interesting developments on the mobile CPU market this year.
Nvidia's Tegra 4, or Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 - which one do you think will be the dominant chipset for 2013?
1. wendygarett (unregistered)
As usual, crapdragon dominate smartphone while tegra 4 dominate tablets... not just android but the Microsoft as well...
5. wendygarett (unregistered)
Typo, is snapdragon >.
10. Ohrules (Posts: 298; Member since: 11 Jun 2012)
do you really believe that we'll buy that? there is a pretty big gap between 's' and 'c' and an even bigger between 'n' and 'r'
58. Nadr1212 (Posts: 741; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)
I hope REALLY high-end smartphones will have BOTH chipsets.
BY either late 2013 or early-mid 2014
(That obviously won't happen and will be way 2 expensive, but I'm just hopin'!)
13. wendygarett (unregistered)
I just get used of it bro... I'm sorry k? Lol
16. MeoCao (unregistered)
I cast my vote to Tegra at this point as I don't know much about S800.
But I hope Tegra and Snapdragon will fight each other like Airbus and Boeing. Customers always love such fights of equal opponents.
53. nak1017 (Posts: 322; Member since: 08 Jan 2010)
You mean sue eachother relentlessly in a number of international courts, each asking for injunctions and damages...
61. IHateApple (banned) (Posts: 122; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
Look what I found. Tegra 4 will launch in 4 variants.
6. wendygarett (unregistered)
But only one will be the dominant player bro :)
it can't be both...
17. bbblader (Posts: 520; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)
4. KazEmpire (Posts: 39; Member since: 07 Nov 2011)
I Vote for the One with better performance.
8. aayupanday (Posts: 189; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)
Nvidia Tegra 4 might power the upcoming HTC M7...
59. Hunt3rj2 (Posts: 396; Member since: 11 Nov 2011)
Nope. It's been confirmed multiple times that it will be a Qualcomm chipset.
11. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Ray: I'm not sure how you call unimpressive the Adreno 330...
Adreno 225 has 50% better perfomance than Tegra3, and Adreno 320 doubles that, so it's 3 times more performing than Tegra3. If Adreno 330 doubles that again it will have around 6 times the performance of the Tegra3 GPU too.
In fact the Exynos Octa will be also be around similar numbers as it aproximately doubles the performance of the PowerVR SGX MP3 of the iPhone 5, which in turn doubles the SGP MP2 of the iPhone 4S wich again is around 50% more powerful than than the Tegra3 GPU.
So the race is going to be really tight, I hope to see the first results soon!!
21. Retro-touch (Posts: 233; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)
I hope so, Tegra chips are always overhyped and then end up underperforming compared to competition, I'm still looking towards Exynos since they perform great and currently S4 is a wonderful chipset so I'm sure Snapdragon will not disappoint
23. cezarepc (Posts: 416; Member since: 23 Nov 2012)
The benchmark scores of my Tegra3-powered-Nexus7 is not chart-topping. Compared to dual-kraits and quad-exynos, my chipset is no match. I used to "listen" to what "experts" say and I was always like "I will never get a non-exynos phone!" simply because it was the best chip overall. But ever since I got my N7, my outlook changed. My next purchase will not depend on what chip is inside, but how the manufacturer made the most out of the chip. I'll wait for the next 7" nexus anyway :p
77. pgirish (Posts: 2; Member since: 20 Oct 2009)
Wow, someone makes sense here.
I agree totally.
Nexus line of phones have always offered better experience than all the poorly crafted heavily specced devices.
25. Berzerk000 (Posts: 3262; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)
So, if all statistics are correct;
Adreno 330 = Tegra 4 = PowerVR SGX544MP3
Quad Krait 400 > Quad A15 (Qualcomm said it brought 75% CPU increase from S4 quad Krait, which was about 30% sub par of A15)
Exynos 5 Octa = 2x Tegra 4 because of same GPU strength yet double the cores with same architecture
Exynos 5 Octa = 1.5x Snapdragon 800 since Krait 400 brings about 50% CPU increase from Tegra 4, but still same GPU power
Of course there are variations of clock speeds, and the Exynos 5 Octa has double the amount of cores.
So when clock speeds remain constant,
Exynos 5 Octa > Snapdragon 800 > Tegra 4
Unless my math is wrong, which is a good possibility since it's early in the morning, I shouldn't be doing math.
28. remixfa (Posts: 13882; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
cores dont automatically mean more power than another chip... only more power in that chip's vertical.
However, Id be surprised if the Exynos 5 octa isnt the most powerful chip around. Hell, Id be surprised if these chips beat the E5 quad by more than a slim margin.
33. amansingal14 (Posts: 260; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
Hell, I would be surprised if the new Intel Chip (used in Lenovo K900) doesn't have a quad core version to beat the hell out of the 'octa'...
36. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
It has, but it's not ready yet. It won't come to the market till the end of this year.
The code name is "Bay Trail" (as opposed to "Clover Trail" for the dual cores) and it will feature not only quad core but Out of order CPU architecture in order to equal the performance of the A15 cores. Also it will be built in 22nm not 32nm as the current Atom SoCs are.
If done right it may be a big step for Intel in the right direction in the mobile chips.
The GPU is still unknown (at least to me).
50. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
I can't see that chip coming in phones.
Too much for the battery.
For tabs and hybrids yes, but not phones
30. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
What are you talking about?
Krait 400 is up 75% at 2.3Ghz compared to 1.5 of the current Krait.
Put A15 on that clock speed and it would outperform the K400.
And you don't know the clock speed on either the Tegra 4 and Exynos Octa.
Also, Exynos Octa is only four A15 cores working at the same time.
The other four are the A7 ones
32. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
You just posted it one minute before I ended my own reple :D
31. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Bufff, you did so many mistakes that I don't even know where to start correcting....
Exynons is not really "octa", it's a LITTLE.big architecture, so actually it should be around as powerful as Tegra4 (both have quad cores A15, but the exynos has 4 A7 against 1 A7 in the Tegra for battery savings)
The Krait 400 will be 75% over S4 with speed included, while A15 is 30% over Krait at the SAME clock, so your math is completey messed up. The expectation is that Krait 400 will be a bit short of A15 cores at the same speed, but it will made up to it by using higher clock speeds (Tegra will use 1.9 GHz and Exynos octa 1.8 GHz, while Snapdragon 800 will use 2.3 GHz instead).
So it will be also tight in CPU performance.
I won't even try to fix your complete post... Too tyring.
51. Berzerk000 (Posts: 3262; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)
I shouldn't write in the morning. I just end up shaking my head when reading it in the afternoon.
54. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 536; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
Actually the Tegra 4 has 1 A15 core for power saving and not an A7.
56. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Right, I double checked. A7 was only my assumption, I actually didn´t have information about it.
67. vinsterdamus (Posts: 58; Member since: 20 Feb 2010)
i think you are 100% wrong about the exynos having 2x the cores of the same architecture. the octa will feature 4 A15 cores and for battery conservation 4 A9 chips.. so just 4 chips of the same architecture therefor in a performance test it will be 4 cores against 4 cores of tegra 4 and snadragon 800. I think we need to wait for benchmark because without them we can't say anything about the actual power of the chips. one thing is for sure with 8 cores the octa wil be the biggest one and most likely the hottest so samsung will have problems turning up the power on the A15 chips
60. IHateApple (banned) (Posts: 122; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
According to Anandtech, Qualcomm S4 Krait = 3.3 DMIPS/MHz per core (Dhrystone Million Instructions Per Second). Since Krait 400 is an improvement over Krait, it should do at least 3.5 DMIPS/MHz per core.
According to Wikipedia, Cortex A15 does 4.01 DMIPS/MHz per core.
So in Qualcomm 800 total CPU performance should be = 3.5 DMIPS/MHz per core * 4 Cores * 2.3 GHz = 32,200 DMIPS.
And in Tegra 4 total CPU performance should be = 4.01 DMIPS/MHz per core * 4 Cores * 1.9 GHz = 30,476 DMIPS.
According to Wikipedia, Exynos 5 Octa has 4 A15s at 1.8 GHz. So its CPU performance should be = 4.01 DMIPS/MHz per core * 4 Cores * 1.8 GHz = 28,872 DMIPS per second
So according to my calculation Qualcomm 800 should perform about 5% faster than Tegra 4 and 11% faster than Exynos 5 Octa.
Holy Cow. It's gonna be a tough race to the top.
62. IHateApple (banned) (Posts: 122; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
Ever if Krait 400 is not an improvement over S4 Krait. Qualcomm 800 should do 30,360 DMIPS, which makes it equal to Tegra 4 and 5% faster than Exynos 5 Octa.
65. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Those calculations look much better than the math Berzerk000 did and are in line with the theoretical expected performances.
Still I would rather wait for the benchmarks before assuring anything.
66. IHateApple (banned) (Posts: 122; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
Actually my calculations about assuming Krait 400 to be 3.5 DMIPS/MHz are wrong. If Qualcomm is saying the truth that Krait 400 at 2.3 GHz is 75% faster than S4 Krait at 1.5 GHz, Krait 400 should be 3.76 DMIPS/MHz which would make total CPU performance 34,650 DMIPS. This would theoretically make it a lot faster than both Exynos and Tegra.
68. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Yes, but 20% is not that big margin if we take into account that krait 800 will not be available till later this year.
I worry more about the GPUs, it seems the first results for the Tegra 4 have been dissapointing. Around the same power than the Mali-604:
69. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
..I think that is the leaked benchmark supposedly done with an early silicon build
"The leaked GLBenchmark results are apparently from a much older silicon revision running no where near final GPU clocks."
74. AppleHateBoy (Posts: 177; Member since: 29 Feb 2012)
Leave performance. I am more worried about power consumption. Optimus G and Nexus 4 both face a lot of overheating problems making the phone uncomfortable to hold. As long as the power consumption is low on Tegra 4 and Qualcomm 800, I am good.
BTW I didn't mention Exynos 5 Octa because we should be able to force the SoC to use only the Cortex A7 Cluster and turn off the Cortex A15 cluster. This will significantly reduce the power consumption of the SoC.
70. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
..plus if the Exynos Octa is indeed having a SGX 544MP3 GPU, (~51GFLOPS), looks like Samsung will lose the processing edge and benchmark king bragging rights with the S4!
Not that it will matter in practical use because all those chips should perform so fast it will be really hard to notice a difference.
The power efficiency will be more important, though, and there Samsung could hold the advantage.
72. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
This year seems to be seriously difficult to guess which one is going to be the best SoC, it may end up being a race where one has the best GPU, other the best CPU and the third the power efficiency.
If they are near one to the other I would go the one that offers better battery life, as for my daily usage any of the new chips provides good enough perfomance.
Thanks for the link, I hadn't read that one.
14. thunderising (Posts: 225; Member since: 25 Nov 2011)
Snapdragon 800 with a 75% increase will DOMINATE the field.
15. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1116; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)
its not about power ...Snapdragons have more smartphone customers , tablets will usually go for tegra 4
63. IHateApple (banned) (Posts: 122; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
see my above done calculation.
18. BadAssAbe (Posts: 433; Member since: 22 Apr 2011)
I wonder if these highend chips perform better then low end PC chips?
Like intels celadon or amd e300
Maybe im the only who thinks of this
29. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
That's not even possible, as the OLD GENERATION of quad cores A9/krait already performs better than those chipsets you mention.
Probably you are coming from the PC world and still thinks that the mobile socs are not performers, but here you have a comparison AMD-E300 vs Exynos 4412
The mobile chip destroys the AMD one in performance (and I didn't choose the Qualcomm S4 or the Galaxy Note 2 not to abuse)
The new generation with A15 cores should be over the intel Core 2 Duo and in the range of the i3 (bein quad cores A15 against dual cores i3)
34. amansingal14 (Posts: 260; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
HAHAHA, dude, Intel Atom in K900 outperforms quad A9/Krait processor with 2x power. (See Benchmarks of K900 prototype.)
Search for Lenovo k900 in Phonearena search and view the one with the name 'Intel Atom Powered Lenovo IdeaPhone K900 Bechmarks..."
35. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
So? I read that article, and what's your point?
The guy was mentioning some old and weak PC chips that are less powerful than the Atom Z2850. Moreover, as you mention, that's just a prototype, which can have the real results or somthing completely messed up.
Let's wait for real devices to check if all that is true... and how they compare with the new A15 cores.
37. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
That Atom will go against the announced mobile chips -and end up smashed.
Krait 400 should go well over 30000 in Antutu, for example
38. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Holly s**t.. this just goes to show how behind the times cheap laptops are. Wow.
Thanks for the link.
39. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
You are welcome, but don't get confuse either. Those chips aren't used in laptops (well, may be the really cheap ones) but they are designed for netbooks instead.
40. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
I just downloaded geekbench and ran it.
My stock S3 result - 1782
41. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Okay, this is the third result I got:
42. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Oh, and that Toshiba is obviously a cheap laptop, not a netbook
44. TylerGrunter (Posts: 703; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
Yes, that's more ore less the results you get on the geekbench for a S3, normally a bit over 1700 and sometimes 1800.
I thought the Toshiba was some netbook as those chips were mostly used in netbooks and are really underpowered. Anyway a really cheap laptop as I suggested in my comment ;)
Thanks for the correction.
19. ahomad (Posts: 121; Member since: 15 May 2012)
"although it's somehow unimpressive when we have in mind that the new mobile GeForce in the Tegra 4 promises to increase the performance in graphics-oriented tasks by up to 6 times" this is non-professional criticism
330 is 2x 320 while T4 is 6x T3. but already 320 is alot more powerful than T3. T3 is comparable to 225 and we know that 320 is 4x 225.
to make it clear, not how many x is important but you need to look what you are comparing with. 330 is 8x 225 while T4 is 6x T3. so again T4 and 330 will be comparable in term of power.
20. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Actually T3 is comparable to Adreno 220, and the 320 absolutely crushes it in every way (about 3-5 x across the field)