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Battle of the S8 chipsets: Snapdragon 835 vs Exynos 8895

Battle of the S8 chipsets: Snapdragon 835 vs Exynos 8895

As is the case for almost every of Samsung’s flagships, each of this year’s Galaxy S8 variants will come in two separate versions – one for the US and China, running on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835, and one for the rest of the world, powered by Samsung’s own Exynos 8895. This comes as a result of Qualcomm’s firm grasp on CDMA-related patents, which all but guarantees their near-monopoly in the States, forcing companies like Samsung to release modified versions of their devices compatible with local bands.

While the two chipsets have their differences, they are fairly minimal, and it’s fair to say the end user will probably never feel them. Furthermore, Samsung is unlikely to sell an underpowered version of its device in a given market, and will almost surely strive for equivalency across versions as a result. Still, while we’re waiting for the Galaxy S8, the best we can do is to compare the two chipsets, and see how they fare against each other, which will hopefully give us an idea of what the differences between versions might be:

Snapdragon 835Exynos 8895
CPU CoresKryo 280Custom + Cortex A53
CPU Configuration4 x 2.45 GHz
4 x 1.9 GHz
4 x 2.5 GHz
4 x 1.7 GHz
GPUAdreno 540Mali-G71 MP20
RAM2 x 32-bit LPDDR4X 1866MHzLPDDR4X
Camera16MP Dual, 32MP Single28MP+16MP Dual, 28MP Single
FlasheMMC 5.1 / UFS 2.1eMMC 5.1 / UFS 2.1
Video Recording4K @ 30FPS4K @ 120FPS
Video Playback4K UHD @ 60fps4K UHD @ 120fps
ModemLTE Cat. 16 4CA 1 Gbps down
LTE Cat. 13 2CA 150 Mbps up
LTE Cat. 16 5CA 1 Gbps down
LTE Cat. 13 2CA 150 Mbps up
ChargingQuick Charge 4.0, WiPowerSamsung Adaptive Fast Charge, Qi, PMA

CPU

The two processors are pretty similar, but their cores run at somewhat different clock speeds. 

First off, we have what is probably the most important component of a smartphone – its processor. Both Samsung and Qualcomm have upped their game since the last generation, offering an almost 30 percent increase in performance, along with a 40 percent reduction of power consumption. These, along with the processors' reduced physical size, are all a result of new 10 nm FinFET technologies, which let the manufacturers cram more power in less space. Both processors feature an octa-core architecture, with four high- and four low-powered cores which get switched on depending on processor load. While the two processors’ clock speeds are somewhat different, real-life usage benchmarks are yet to show which solution is the better one, though we predict performance will be near identical.

GPU

The Snapdragon offers a 25% improvement over previous chipsets, but the Exynos beats that quite easily.

Battle of the S8 chipsets: Snapdragon 835 vs Exynos 8895

In recent years, more and more pressure has been put upon chip makers to further develop not just the processors, but the GPUs, too – this largely comes from the emergence of mobile VR, which puts an immense strain upon the graphics capabilities of a phone. The Adreno 540, which is bundled into the Snapdragon 835, offers a 25 percent increase in power compared to its predecessor, the 530. The Exynos-powered version of the S8 will feature a Mali-G71 GPU instead, which will also come in an impressive

Both chipsets offer vast improvements, but the Exynos is still the clear winner

20-core configuration, with Samsung promising up to 60 percent improvement over previous GPUs. The clear winner here is Samsung’s chipset, though hopefully the real-world difference won’t be as huge as the number suggest.

Data speeds


Both new chipsets offer increased potential data speed – in fact, the numbers are exactly the same: up to 1 Gbps down and 150 Mbps up, though a major difference is that Exynos’ modem is also the first ever to offer 5-band carrier aggregation. Specifics on it are unclear, however, meaning we don’t yet know whether 5 bands are required to hit the maximum speed, or they are simply an optional feature. 

Audio, video, and cameras

The S8 doesn't make use use of either processor's full capabilities in the camera department.

Battle of the S8 chipsets: Snapdragon 835 vs Exynos 8895

According to leaked specs, the Galaxy S8 will feature a 12 MP dual camera on the back, and an 8 MP one on the front. This is a far cry from both of its chipsets’ capabilities, unfortunately – the Snapdragon 835 supports a dual-16 MP rear shooter, while the Exynos 8895 ups that with a 16 plus 28 MP configuration. Exynos-powered devices should also support 120 fps video playback, along with 4K recording, which puts the 835’s 60 fps playback to shame. Samsung’s chip also includes what the company calls a “Vision Processing Unit”, a technology designed to help analyze image data, and improve the phone’s video tracking and object recognition capabilities. As for audio, a comparison remains impossible for now, as the Exynos’ DSP hasn’t been detailed yet. the Snapdragon, on the other hand,

The Exynos' 120 fps 4K video playback puts Qualcomm to shame

offers reduced power consumption, including for always-on microphones, which are commonly used in virtual assistants.

Charging


Battle of the S8 chipsets: Snapdragon 835 vs Exynos 8895

Both of the chipsets powering the S8 will also feature some form of fast charging – for the international version, there’s Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charge, while the US gets Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 4.0. The devices’ wireless charging technology will also be different, too, with Exynos-powered ones using the QI and PMA standards, while the Snapdragon 835 is locked to Qualcomm’s WiPower.

Security


As expected, both chipsets have advanced security features, the biggest of which is probably support for iris scanning technology. The S8 has been rumored for a while to include the feature, helping up mobile security. Snapdragon Security, a feature of the new 835 chipset, also promises automatic malware detection, along with transaction authentication for mobile payments. The Exynos 8895, meanwhile, has a “dedicated layer” for security, which will offer much of the same features, along with a hardware crypto accelerator and a flash memory protector.

Conclusion


Only time can tell how good real-life performance will be

While the different US and international variants of previous Samsung flagships haven’t differed that much in terms of specs, the Exynos-powered versions have consistently offered slightly better performance, and the S8 is not an exception in that regard. Of course, it’s doubtful Samsung will let international users get more features than US ones, so don’t get your hopes up for 120 fps video just yet. As for real-life performance, it’s worth noting again that nothing is set in stone just yet – there have been recorded instances of the same device using the same chipset on a different carrier having significantly different performance, so only time (and benchmarks) can tell which will be the best version of the Galaxy S8.

sources: Qualcomm, Samsung

47 Comments
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posted on 25 Feb 2017, 03:43 3

1. Takeharu (Posts: 262; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


Title says SD 820 instead of 835

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 08:38 1

25. sgodsell (Posts: 5057; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


All 8 cores on the SD 835 are kryo 280 custom cores vs the 8895 use 4 custom cores and the other 4 are regular cortex-A53 cores clocked lower.

The real test comes in GPUs and Qualcomm has been the king with its GPU every year. But this year is looking up for the 8895, especially when it can sustain a 4k display at 120 fps. So it will be interesting to see how each will do in VR.

The ram is interesting as well. It doesn't say how many channels the 8895 has. Plus we don't know the maximum ram speed. If the 8895 supports 4 channels with 2400 MHz ram. Then this would explain a lot.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 03:46 1

2. johanbiff (Posts: 415; Member since: 31 Mar 2015)


The 8895 also supports ufs 2.1

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:06 5

5. vincelongman (Posts: 5127; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


And the 8895 supports Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) compliant
Which probably isn't a difference now
But in the future, when HSA is common, it should mean the 8895 can offload some more workloads to its GPU

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 03:48 1

3. IosDroid (Posts: 101; Member since: 03 Dec 2015)


Kaloyan, to me it seems like there is a mixup in the charging types. Quickcharge should be with Qualcomm and Samsung Adaptive with Exynos.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:04

4. Kaloyan.C (Posts: 22; Member since: 25 Feb 2017)


Fixed, thanks!

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:11

7. manojmcn (Posts: 626; Member since: 16 Jul 2015)


The tweet still says Snapdragon 820 vs Exynos 8895...

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:08 7

6. liberalsnowflake (banned) (Posts: 273; Member since: 24 Feb 2017)


Wow 4k @120 fps hope it doesn't explodes this time.otherwise gta 5 mod will feature new samsung grenade 8

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 06:22 4

16. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4376; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)


Let's walk past explosions shall we? And move towards positive strides.
If this new exynos can do videos 4k@120fps without sweat, Qualcomm has something to deal with.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 06:54

18. AmashAziz (Posts: 1602; Member since: 30 Jun 2014)


For the sake of equality, they will surely keep video recording locked to 30 FPS on the Exynos 9 processor.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 09:22

28. Macready (Posts: 1537; Member since: 08 Dec 2014)


They didn't when the S4 came out.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 11:08

33. UglyFrank (Posts: 1957; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


You mean the Note 3? S800 4K/Exynos 5420 no 4K
The S4 couldn't do 4K

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 12:04 1

35. Macready (Posts: 1537; Member since: 08 Dec 2014)


I'm talking about differences in video specs in general for both versions. The Exynos S4 could do 720p @ 120 fps, the Snapdragon couldn't.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:11

8. saiki4116 (Posts: 413; Member since: 31 Mar 2011)


LTE uses 180KHz sub carriers, with CA(Carrier Aggregation), these sub carriers need not be contagious, can be across which helps scheduler as well as improve throughput.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:15 2

9. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 3403; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


As if the GPU in the E8895 is actually going to be more powerful than the GPU in the SD835, hasn't happened yet and if it does I doubt those percentages that suggest the MP20 G71 will destroy the Adreno 540 is accurate to say the least.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:22 2

10. liberalsnowflake (banned) (Posts: 273; Member since: 24 Feb 2017)


Doesn't matter half baked samsung devices would still lag.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:34 12

11. Tyrion_Lannister (unregistered)


The 7420 had a faster GPU than the SD 810, and the exynos 5410 had a faster GPU than SD600.

I have conclusive proof that the E8895 GPU will beat the Adreno 540 easily. In fact, I'm gonna write a blog post about it.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 04:47 1

12. liberalsnowflake (banned) (Posts: 273; Member since: 24 Feb 2017)


True on paper it was fast but was still shamelessly lagging on certain low demanding games.

posted on 04 Mar 2017, 06:09

47. alex3run (Posts: 715; Member since: 18 May 2014)


The key word is "low demanding". Don't know exactly about E7420 vs SD810 but E5433 outperformed SD805 in games though the difference wasn't huge.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 05:58

15. vincelongman (Posts: 5127; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


I reckon 8895's GPU will be better in short term benchmarks, but the 835's will be better in long term benchmarks

Time will tell
Although we probably have to wait for the 835 phones since Samsung's tend to be unoptimized as they usually focus more on their Exynos models (which is understandable)

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 06:58 3

19. Tyrion_Lannister (unregistered)


I don't think so. The benchmarks for the G71 MP8 on anandtech left me awestruck. If Samsung goes for an MP20 configuration at 10nm with low frequencies, it will beat the 835 in peak as well as sustained performance.

Even if it throttles by 30-40%, it will be ahead. And that's assuming adreno 540 is super stable.

The G71 is an absolute monster of a GPU. Check this out:

http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph10871/Huawei_Mate_9-GPU-Basemark_ES31-Off.png

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 09:47

32. SYSTEM_LORD (Posts: 1042; Member since: 05 Oct 2015)


Yikes, I hadn't seen that. Hopefully Xiaomi does their thing with their Pinecone SoC, because they have been making strides to include western LTE bands and I can't see them going backwards on that. Hopefully the Mi6 will include these, because at their prices, goodbye Qualcomm.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 16:25

42. vincelongman (Posts: 5127; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


Basemark ES 3.1 is a bit older, doesn't use tessellation
GFXBench 4.0 Car Chase has tessellation
http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph10871/Huawei_Mate_9-GPU-GFXBench_Car_Chase-Off.png

Still very impressive for a MP8, but it throttles in long term Manhattan 3.1

The Pixel gets 28.7 fps, only dropping a few fps
The Mate 9 gets 17.9 fps

https://gfxbench.com/compare.jsp?benchmark=gfx40&did1=36723173&os1=Android&api1=gl&hwtype1=GPU&hwname1=Qualcomm+Adreno+%28TM%29+530&D2=Huawei+Mate+9+%28MHA-xxx%29

The Adreno 540 should be super stable given te Adreno 530 is already, eventhough with its CPU is subpar in efficiency

Obviously the MP20 will do far better than the MP8 due to lower clocks
But I have doubts if it will be better than the 540's sustained performance since its a pretty big gap

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 08:10

22. may_czos (Posts: 856; Member since: 22 Nov 2014)


E7420 had slightly slower GPU than SD810, E8890 has slower GPU than SD820/821, E9810 may be equal to the SD835.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 08:29 2

24. Tyrion_Lannister (unregistered)


E7420 had a faster GPU than 810:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/9146/the-samsung-galaxy-s6-and-s6-edge-review/6

See it for yourself. About the 8890 vs 820, it was a dead heat. E8890 won some, S820 won the others:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/10196/the-samsung-galaxy-s7-and-s7-edge-review-part-2/3

8895 will surely be faster than 835 based on the leaks.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 11:12 1

34. UglyFrank (Posts: 1957; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


The problem with the GPUs in exynos is they can't handle the higher compute situations as well as the Snapdragons can.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 12:05 2

36. Tyrion_Lannister (unregistered)


Exynos uses ARM's Mali GPUs. And yes, upto the last gen, they used midgard architecture which had really bad compute performance. But it should change with bifrost in the G71.

I am one of the only users who use their GPUs for compute. My GTX 1060 has ran many a neural network simulations for deep learning. And never in the world would I do that on a phone, or even a laptop for that matter.

P.S.: I know AMD GPUs have better compute. But for the moment the libraries I use only support CUDA, not OpenCL.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 14:05 1

39. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 3403; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


f**k paper facts, I'm talking IRL performance and Snapdragon has always performed better when gaming.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 14:39 1

40. AStar (Posts: 7; Member since: 25 Feb 2017)


IRL performance, you wouldn't notice any difference in 99% games on the play store.

posted on 25 Feb 2017, 16:07

41. Instigator (Posts: 21; Member since: 11 Feb 2017)


Give up Arch, you've been schooled. Tyrion Lannister is always fair and provides real facts. No one is interested in what you want to believes, so please stick to facts.

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