Performance is an area of particular interest for the Mate 8, as it features the Kirin 950 SoC, a HiSilicon product that competes primarily with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon parts among Android devices.
“The Mate 8 is powered by a brand-new Kirin 950 chipset,making it the first smartphone to feature TSMC’s 16 nm FinFET Plus chip technology. The octa-core processor consists of four A72 2.3 GHz cores and four A53 1.8 GHz cores. The Kirin 950 is 30% more efficient than the Kirin 930, delivering fast, long-lasting performance.”
The Kirin 950 is an ARM design, using the familiar big.LITTLE configuration with its 8-core CPU; though it is using the latest Cortex-A72 architecture (soon to be succeeded by the recently annouced Cortex-A73 core). The Mali-T880 graphics are the stock ARM solution, so we shouldn't see anything too surprising with the graphics benchmarks.
We'll start with CPU performance using Geekbench 3.
"Geekbench 3 is Primate Labs' cross-platform processor benchmark, with a new scoring system that separates single-core and multi-core performance, and new workloads that simulate real-world scenarios. Geekbench 3 makes it easier than ever to find out if your computer is up to speed."
A very good first result here for the Kirin 950, with top marks for multi-threaded integer performance; though it lagged behind the most recent Snapdragon and Apple SoCs – with Apple the single-threaded performance king as usual. Looking at the Nexus 5X and OnePlus 2 results with the recent Snapdragon 808 and 810 (each comprised of Cortex A57 + Cortex A53 cores) we see IPC gains for this latest ARM core, with the SD820's custom Kryo cores outperforming all but Apple here.
It's pretty much the same story here with the floating-point test, The only significant change is with the SD808 as it takes a larger lead on the bigger SD810 here with single-threaded performance.
Next we'll check out BaseMark OS II overall results.
"Basemark OS II is a system-level All-In-One benchmarking tool designed for measuring overall performance of smartphones and tablets from all platforms, including Android, iOS and Windows phone 8.
The benchmark features a comprehensive suite of tests including system, internal and external memory, graphics, web browsing, camera, battery and CPU consumption."
Apple and the A9 are on top, with the Kirin 950 between the Snapdragon 810 and 820 SoCs. The A9 fares very well in this test thanks in part to its leading single-thread performance, and the Snapdragon 820 has benchmarked very well. The Kirin 950 seems to be stuck in 3rd place among the tested phones due to its single-thread performance, which is solid nonetheless.
First of all, I have no idea what happened with the Octane 2.0 test with the Apple A9, but I re-ran it several times and got the same result. When I get my hands on a 6s Plus again I'll re-visit this. Probably a mistake. Regardless, I was primarily interested in the Kirin 950 results, which were neck-and-neck with the Snapdragon 808. The the Mate 8 and Nexus 5X seem to offer similar performance.
The results from Mozilla's Kraken test were similar – except the OnePlus 2 and iPhone 6s Plus traded places. Accuracy at the top and bottom of these tests aside, in the middle we have the Mate 8 and the Kirin 950 right there between the Snapdragon 808 and 820.
We'll begin with 3DMark.
"3DMark is a cross-platform benchmark used by millions of people, hundreds of hardware review sites and many of the world's leading technology companies. It's the industry standard gaming performance benchmark, a professional-grade testing tool available to you for free."
I ran just the Sling Shot benchmark here, using results from the OpenGL ES 3.0 version as not all phones are ES 3.1 enabled yet (I'm looking at you, Apple). As you can see, this wasn't a good benchmark for the Kirin 950's Mali T880 GPU.
Next we'll see how these phones fared in the GFXBench tests:
"GFXBench is a free, cross-platform and cross-API 3D graphics benchmark that measures graphics performance, long-term performance stability, render quality and power consumption with a single, easy-to-use application.
GFXBench 4.0 enables measuring mobile and desktop performance with advanced graphics effects and increased workloads."
The Kirin 950 (Mali T880) edged out the Snapdragon 808 (Adreno 418), but these phones are still at the bottom of the GPU tests so far. In fact, the next test was even worse.
The Kirin 950 is great for productivity, and not so great for raw GPU performance.
Next we'll talk about battery life.
A shame about the GPU
A shame about the GPU results. If it had done better the Kirin chip could have been a real contender for high performance phones. Unfortunately (as far as I see it) these results are more indicative of a lower mid range item.
Would a person who doesn’t
Would a person who doesn’t play mobile games notice the slower gpu?
I’ll agree the comment above,
I’ll agree the comment above, the HUAWEI looks more like a lower mid-range office.
Although the US just got the S7 with the 820 version, it’s still good enough it looks like.
May be a firmware update
May be a firmware update might fix the GPU performance later on.
Unfortunately, this is the
Unfortunately, this is the real performance, cause Kirin 950 uses just 4 shader cores of Mali T880, while Exynos 8890 uses 12 and its closer to Adreno 530. The full Mali T880 (16 shader cores) could be faster than Adreno 530 (SD820) but it seems it might not be suitable for smartphones.
What a shame.
What a shame.
Am i the only person that
Am i the only person that looks at all the current phone releases and says why?!? Until Google outlines DayDream further why would anyone consider a phone that is more than $200 right now?
Apple is probably doing the same thing as Google with the next release.
All phones on the market are about to be considered bargain bin phones with the exception of the photography phones.
With the S7 regular now
With the S7 regular now available for around $370us just got 1 and that’s my limit now.
It’s not a custom ARMv8A ISA
It’s not a custom ARMv8A ISA running micro-arch, it’s just 4 reference A72s, and 4 A53s Big/Little and not so much. Maybe we will be seeing the A73 CPU micro-arch and the Mail/Bifrost GPU IP at some time in the future, but this SKU is too costly relative to the performance it provides. Until the New Mali/Bifrost based GPUs are available the graphics will not be too exciting!
So at Hot Chips conference day one 8/22/2016, 9:45 AM
“GPUs & HPCs Bifrost, the new GPU architecture and its initial implementation, Mali-G71 Jem Davies ARM”
Who covered this and when will the Mali-G71 graphics/IP be in any new products. The Zen coverage was good, but now it’s about phones so who covered this presentation on the new Bifrost GPU architecture!
Why do smartphones need 8
Why do smartphones need 8 cores? What advantage does having 8 cores on a smartphone provide over 4 cores?
Maybe it’s an American thing,
Maybe it’s an American thing, but I’m much happier putting my money towards Samsung (many made in Korea) than HUAWEI (China).