GPU Performance

GPU performance between the different devices isn’t something that you’d be able to guess just by looking at the specification sheets. On MediaTek’s side, whilst the chip in theory has 9 physical GPU cores, in this lower-binned chip variant we only see 7 of them active, at around 700MHz.

Qualcomm’s Adreno 620 is quite slower than what you’d expect from the SoC, as we saw the LG Velvet posting performance results that generally were 2.5x slower than the latest Snapdragon 865 flagship SoC.

Basemark GPU 1.2 - Medium 1440p - Off-Screen / Blit GFXBench Aztec Ruins - High - Vulkan/Metal - Off-screen GFXBench Aztec Ruins - Normal - Vulkan/Metal - Off-screen GFXBench Manhattan 3.1 Off-screen GFXBench T-Rex 2.7 Off-screen

Throughout the results, the hierarchy is quite clear, with the MediaTek D1000L chipset notably outperforming the Snapdragon 765 by up to considerable margins of up to around 50%. Both phones are doing this whilst being extremely conservative with their power usages, not exceeding 2.5-3W, and thus never getting into any thermal stress situations where they would require to throttle.

The international Reno3 devices here are really getting shafted – only posting a fraction of the performance of their Chinese counterparts. These are quite terrible results for the Imagination GPU, and in hindsight, makes their claim of a 2.5x performance increase with the new A-Series GPU look a lot less impressive – but that’s a discussion to be addressed once we actually see silicon designs with the new IP.

System Performance MediaTek clearly wins - But where are the phones?
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  • dotjaz - Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - link

    For years they only had interim licensing and they didn't have a license before starting the process, I'd call that stealing. Reply
  • londedoganet - Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - link

    > For years they only had interim licensing

    Which years? From 2010 to 2014, Apple used stock PowerVR GPUs, and then paid license fees to Imagination from 2014-2017, stopped in 2017 and started again in January 2020 (https://www.theregister.com/2020/01/02/imagination...
    Reply
  • deanylev - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    HiSilicon is spelled as "HiSilcion" on the last page. Reply
  • LiviuTM - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    I'm no expert by any means, but reviews of mobile SoCs focus only on processing power and efficiency, which lead to one major issue: says absolute nothing about mobile connection quality. I suspect Qualcomm stack (modem/modem firmware, RF Front End, antennas and whatever else there is) is vastly superior.
    This is not very often talked of (if any at all), but it had a significant impact onreal usage.
    Remember Apple not just buried the hatchet with, but also signed a multiyear deal with Qualcomm for chipsets (mainly modems, I presume).
    Reply
  • s.yu - Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - link

    I believe if you've read enough you'd notice that there's massive discrepancies of connection quality between QC powered models, so at least the front end and antennas should depend primarily on manufacturer implementation.
    OTOH Huawei diehards claim Huawei has superior connection quality, which I don't dismiss but instead attribute to Huawei's telecoms hardware discriminating against non-Huawei handsets, explaining how these claims only arise from regions where Huawei's telecoms branch comes close to a monopoly, like China, south Asia, the Middle East etc.
    Reply
  • shabby - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    Why is there performance so poor with 4 a77 cores? Reply
  • HyperText - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    Frequency... Reply
  • dotjaz - Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - link

    Nope, if you looked at GB5 and SPEC06, the raw performance is not bad at all, far better than 765G, but the actual performance is lagging behind Reno3 Pro 5G especially with responsiveness/burst load. Reply
  • [ECHO] - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    Fascinating stuff Andrei, thanks for the write up! Reply
  • [ECHO] - Monday, August 10, 2020 - link

    It's interesting to see the Dimensity 800/820 actually show up in more phones (couple of Honor and Huawei's, at least one Xiaomi/Redmi) than the 1000/1000L/1000+ so far. Almost makes you wonder if the original wafers they ordered for the 1000's had a pretty bad defect, didn't get caught until far too long after tape out and then they were stuck salvaging some low percentage of good dies for 1000L's and the 1000+ is a pretty deep silicon respin, hopefully with more wafer starts... Reply

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