Deca-core Helio X30 rises against Snapdragon 835 with 10nm process, PowerVR graphics

Deca-core Helio X30 rises against Snapdragon 835 with 10nm process, PowerVR graphics
China is now the biggest phone market in the world, and MediaTek chipsets power a lot of the new phones outed there. That leaves the local chip giant in an enviable position, and stimulates it to strike above and beyond in order to keep up with the Snapdragon and Exynos processors in this world, not mention the Kirins.

Imagination Technologies just announced that MediaTek's Helio X30 - essentially the third chipset produced with the latest 10nm process - will feature its PowerVR GPU inside. The 10nm node offers increased performance at a fraction of the power consumption that 14nm chipsets like the Snapdragon 821 offer. The X30 chipset features a whopping deca-core CPU. The most powerful tasks are assigned to a pair of Cortex-A73 cores running at a clock speed of 2.8GHz, then four Cortex-A53 ones with a 2.2GHz clock speed handle middle of the road chores, while another quartet of Cortex-A35 cores takes care of the light housekeeping at speeds up to 2 GHz. 

The chip supports up to 8 GB of RAM, but all those trendy 10nm chipsets like the Snapdragon 835 and Exynos 8895 do too, so our attention perked up when we heard that it comes with a Power VR GPU. Those graphics subsystems have been widely utilized in iPhones, albeit heavily modified, and it is intriguing to see them in a MediaTek chipset, to say the least, as GPUs were the weak point in them before. Imagination says that the X30 has a quad-core PowerVR GT7400 Plus GPU, so the new chipset now ticks all boxes - it is powerful, frugal, and should offer great graphics processing, so we can't wait for someone to scoop it up and benchmark the resulting phone against, say, the 10nm Snapdragon and Exynos processors that will be in the Galaxy S8.

Imagination’s PowerVR graphics provide huge performance boost and power savings in MediaTek’s new Helio X30 chipset

New flagship smartphone processor contains advanced PowerVR Series7XT Plus GPU

LONDON, Feb. 27, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Imagination Technologies (IMG.L) announces that MediaTek Inc. selected its PowerVR Series7XT Plus GPU to achieve higher performance and lower power graphics in its new flagship MediaTek Helio™ X30 processor. The full-featured 10-core Helio X30 is MediaTek’s most advanced smartphone chipset to-date, with graphics that achieve a 2.4x performance boost and power savings up to 60 percent compared to the previous generations.

The MediaTek Helio X30 SoC, manufactured in TSMC 10nm process, brings a new level of computing performance, power efficiency and multimedia features to MediaTek’s Helio family of processors. Imagination’s PowerVR GT7400 Plus GPU delivers advanced high definition graphics and superior performance for vision and computational photography-based applications. It includes full hardware support for tessellation and ASTC LDR and HDR texture compression standards.

“The combination of MediaTek’s processing technologies and the PowerVR Plus GPU in the MediaTek Helio X30 enables our customers to create smartphones that deliver great user experiences,” said Jeffrey Ju, EVP and Co-COO of MediaTek. 

Says Mark Dickinson, EVP of the PowerVR business unit at Imagination, “The MediaTek Helio X30 is another impressive accomplishment from MediaTek and we were delighted to work with them to support development of the chip’s advanced graphics capabilities. In our strategic collaboration, MediaTek has now combined its unique expertise and innovative technologies with our high-end XTP series of GPUs to create compelling and differentiated devices across the mobile segment.”

About PowerVR GPUs
The PowerVR graphics processor (GPU) family leads the market in technological capability, roadmap breadth and ecosystem, setting the benchmark for mobile and embedded GPUs. PowerVR is the leading graphics technology because it is based on a sophisticated and unique architecture. PowerVR’s efficiency through tile-based deferred rendering (TBDR) ensures the lowest possible bandwidth usage and the lowest amount of processing cycles per task, and all of this leads to high performance efficiency and the lowest power consumption per frame, outperforming other solutions. OEMs using chips with PowerVR inside can translate this advantage into products that provide the most amazing visual experiences with the longest possible battery life.

About Imagination
Imagination is a global technology leader whose products touch the lives of billions of people across the globe. The company’s broad range of silicon IP (intellectual property) includes the key processing blocks needed to create the SoCs (Systems on Chips) that power all mobile, consumer and embedded electronics. Its unique multimedia, processor and connectivity technologies enable its customers get to market quickly with complete and highly differentiated SoC platforms. Imagination’s licensees include many of the world’s leading semiconductor manufacturers, network operators and OEMs/ODMs who are creating some of the world’s most iconic products. See:



1. sam3k

Posts: 130; Member since: May 02, 2013

My money is on The exynos 8895..

3. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

I don't think it's going to be called 8895. It's an exynos 9 series chip, so the name should be 9xxx. I heard 9910 somewhere.

31. vincelongman

Posts: 5750; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

18. piyath

Posts: 2445; Member since: Mar 23, 2012

Still the lesson is not learned....??

36. Shamoy

Posts: 112; Member since: Dec 28, 2013

Exynos 8890 was not proven to be faster than the Snapdragon 820 since the Xperia XZ and Google Pixel outperformed the S7 Exynos version in speed tests. The 2017 Exynos will now have a minimal difference from the Snapdragon 835 in CPU speed while the Snapdragon 835 will have a much better GPU, DSP, and LTE modem. The Snapdragon 835 will be better overall than this year's Exynos.

2. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

That seems like a midrange GPU with a powerful CPU. Not sure why manufacturers go with it.

9. Lodix

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

The GPU will be midway between the Adreno 530/540 so I wouldn't call it midrange and price is a good factor to take in mind. And the Exynos is officially called 8895.

15. Lodix

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 17, 2015


16. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

The link you gave is faulty. And the GPU won't be comparable to adreno 530 at all.

23. Lodix

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

I can't post links :S But there was an official announcement from Samsung, look at anandtech. And sorry I mixed the Numbers I was thinking about adreno 430/530. It will be pretty close to the 530 just a bit behind, but Adrenos doesn't translate very well their performance to games so I would not be worried for gaming.

24. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

Where does Samsung come in between? I am talking about the GPU in this mediatek chip. The 8895 would crush the 540.

26. Lodix

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

I was answering to your post above doubting about the name of the new Exynos and to your comment about the X30 having a midrange GPU. Two totally apart things haha

28. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

About the name, I don't think it will be named 8895. The news you are actually referring to was a rumor. An Exynos 9 series name should start with a 9 for obvious reasons. About the X30's GPU: no. Even the GT7600 used in the iPhone 7 just matches the adreno 530 in sustained performance. This one has 50% less shader cores than the one in the A10. I don't expect it to be a good GPU, especially in 2016.

30. mikehunta727 unregistered

What do you think about Apple pretty much using Power VR 8XT series and move to 10nm this year in the A11? Should be a pretty big improvement from 7XT, that should yield some quite impressive gains in both performance and sustained performance from both 8XT architectural improvements and also better semiconductor node too

34. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

They aren't announced yet. So no idea whatsoever.

35. Lodix

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

It is officially named by Samsung 8895 just search it. Samsung nomenclature stopped having any logical reasons long ago. The firts Series 7 was the Exynos 5433 which was very different from the 5422 of the same year but had such a little jump on the number. Yeah it has less cores but it is clocked at twice the frequency of the iPhone 7.

40. Macready

Posts: 1830; Member since: Dec 08, 2014

That may sound logical but illogically, the 5433 was part of the Exynos 7 series.

4. nebula

Posts: 1009; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Price is the key point. That will probably cost half the SD.

5. Sidewinder

Posts: 515; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

I wouldn't be so sure about the quad-core GPU. It should be a octacore atleast.

6. GreenMan

Posts: 2698; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

Holy Molly...!!! This is not just yet another Mediatek... This is BIG DEAL for a gear head... Ahem... For a "Tech Head" like me...! 10nm architecture and the brand new, all singing and dancing Cortex-A35...!!! The 64-Bit successor of the extremely famed Cortex-A7 (Currently found in almost 60% of smartphones according to statistics). The A-35 is about 30% more energy efficient than A-7s and the performance is almost equivalent of A-53...! This phone is definitely going to last a long LONG time because of 10nm architecture and these A35s, likely serving as the primary core-cluster... And A-73s clocked at a whooping 2.8Ghz will surely hold a candle against the Snapdragon 820's Kyro Cluster which is capped at 2.2Ghz... So, it will more than make up for its weakness with a "MUCH" higher clock-speed... But in all honestly, I don't know why they bothered with The A53s... A Hexa-Core combo with a Dual-Core A73 and Quad-Core A35 would have been more than sufficient... Can anyone shed some light on this...? Old yet still learning...! Guess you never stop learning...! Oh well, G'Day!

7. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

A hexa core would have been more than enough. However, that wouldn't have generated as much market buzz as a deca core processor. Mediatek is a company that relies on big sounding words rather than processor that makes more sense to sell SoCs. They were one of the first to make octa core SoCs and they want to be the only one selling 10-core ones. It has a nice marketing ring to it.

12. aman5mathur

Posts: 242; Member since: Mar 28, 2014

Still not satified with the gpu. I mean i know im not supposed to consider the raw computing power but even adreno which was last year's flagship can give twice its performance. Its performance with only 4 clusters can be compared to apple's A8X chip. Im not saying that's bad but even the adreno 510 can give a competition to it. Rest all ofcourse depends upon the integration, optimisation and efficiency. But considering the today's standards , it should be just enough for high immersive gaming. Im not considering the VR performance here. In all id consider it for upper midrange phones only not beyond that. Mi6 could use it too. Again plesase dont get mad for considering its raw computing capability! Adios!

13. aman5mathur

Posts: 242; Member since: Mar 28, 2014

* last yrs adreno 430*

14. Guaire

Posts: 893; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

A8X is a tablet SoC and its GPU architechture is a generation older than X30. That one has same GPU with A9, but it has a third cluster less and it's clocked 82% faster. On the paper it might be a bit faster than Adreno 530.

17. Guaire

Posts: 893; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

Correction, seems like it has 7XT Plus architechture just like A10. That makes it 2 generation newer.

29. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

It's the same architecture as the one on A10. However, the one on A10 has 50% more shader cores. The one on A10 doesn't beat the adreno 530 in sustained load, so there is no chance in hell this one does. And beating the 530 should be expected in 2017.

22. emcdonald75

Posts: 166; Member since: Nov 07, 2012

I don't understand why MediaTek just not use the GT7600 GPU, which is in the iPhone 6S and iPhone 7 (Albeit clocked at a faster speed). Isn't the GT7600 faster than the GT400 Plus, or is the GT7400 Plus GPU VR ready and the other is not?

25. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

The 7400 is a lot cheaper.

27. Malhar8

Posts: 3; Member since: Dec 19, 2016

After AMD another underdog strikes.

37. belovedson

Posts: 1061; Member since: Nov 30, 2010

It's Chinese and it has hidden malware or Spyware or some other bs.

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