Cortex A15: SunSpider 0.9.1

SunSpider performance in Chrome on the Nexus 10 isn't all that great to begin with, so the Exynos 5250 curve is longer than the competition. I wouldn't pay too much attention to overall performanceas that's more of a Chrome optimization issue, but we begin to shine some light on Cortex A15's power consumption:

Although these line graphs are neat to look at, it's tough to quantify exactly what's going on here. Following every graph from here on forward I'll present a bar chart that integrates over the benchmark time period (excluding idle) and presents total energy used during the task in Joules.

Task Energy - SunSpider 0.9.1 - Total Platform

The data here reflects what you see in the chart above fairly well. Acer/Intel manage to get the edge over Dell/Qualcomm when it comes to total energy consumed during the test. The Nexus 10 doesn't do so well here but that's likely a software issue more than anything else.

CPU power is just insane. Peak power consumption is around 3W, compared to around 1W for the competition.

Task Energy - SunSpider 0.9.1 - CPU Only

Looking at the CPU core itself, Qualcomm appears to have the advantage here but keep in mind that we aren't yet tracking L2 cache power on Krait (but we are on Atom). Regardless Atom and Krait are very close.

Even GPU power consumption is pretty high compared to everything else (minus Tegra 3).

Task Energy - SunSpider 0.9.1 - GPU Only

SunSpider - Max, Avg, Min Power

For your reference, the remaining graphs present max, average and min power draw throughout the course of the benchmark (excluding beginning/end idle times).

Max Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - Total Platform

Max Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - GPU Only

Max Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - CPU Only

Average Power Draw

Average Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - Total Platform

Average Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - GPU Only

Average Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - CPU Only

Minimum Power Draw

Min Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - Total Platform

Min Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - GPU Only

Min Power Draw - SunSpider 0.9.1 - CPU Only

ARM's Cortex A15: Idle Power Cortex A15: Kraken


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  • tahyk - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    I've read that review. That's a total scam. They comparing the Atom N270, aka the original 2008 Netbook chip to the latest and greatest ARM. This article is about the Atom Z2760, so it compares 2012 x86 to 2012 ARM - a whole lot more fair. Reply
  • mugiebahar - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    While I always enjoy reading here, I have to admit this article is not 1 of them. I'm not slinging mud or anything but rather I think it's highly subjective to consider @ this point intel is in good standing to make in roads. I agree intel has the technology/money/resources/will power to make a killer chip that sips power better then anyone. But as so many have pointed out and cannot be changed, Intel doesn't have the ability to do it for a cheap competitive price. ARM has always will always be better in that. It's all about how a company is built. ARM doesn't need to finance a foundry much less several like intel. With over head and size comes problems changing business models, especially in manufacturing. The thing is while we don't know yet what the future holds as to the amount of things we will do on a phone, I can guarantee I won't be ripping a DVD, making CAD drawings on it. So fundamentally we will hit a wall that the cost is not worth the money. Am I wrong? While I know what the article is pointing to, which is a strong class leading, watt sipping intel. But they cannot win or be as noteworthy as the article points out. You can't ask a company to devalue their products, Why? Because you lose either because 1) you look desperate or 2) you acknowledge that you where ripping people off before. While they may have had legitimate reasons for pricing, or that technology brought prices down its perception that's the killer. Is Atom bad? No. But ask regular joe, he'll tell you it's crap but why? Price and perception. Intel did something's right and sme wrong. They should have realized a while back desktops were good enough and push mobile chips to the better lower cost production. But now a company so heavy on top can switch just like that. Now ether they will have to restructure to be competitive in the mobile arena or just play second fiddle. But they can't right now (unless they change) be a mobile king as they are on the desk top only because of company structure nothing else. Reply
  • jemima puddle-duck - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    I'd echo this sentiment. I'm getting less and less interested that so-and-so has made something slightly better than so-and-so. The chances are this Atom will never see the inside of more than 1 or 2 phones. I want to know why! This is the insight Anandtech, with its extensive contacts, can deliver! I guess what I'm asking for is more politics and less technology :-) Reply
  • vngannxx - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    Anandtech should rerun the nexus 10 benchmark with the aosp browser. Reply
  • mugiebahar - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    While Intel is the 800lb Gorilla that there is no doubt. Problem is its not stuck in a room with a monkey and a chimpanzee (AMD and VIA) this time it's in a room with a Lion (Apple) Tiger (say Samsung) Siberian Tiger (Qualcomm) mountain lion (TI) baby cub (AMD) and a litter full of Chinese cats. So the Gorilla is the strongest but now he might just have the hair bit of his ass cheeks if he doesn't watch it. Please feel free to reorder the cats to a better resemblance to whoever as I just thought about it quickly, but I think you can agree True? Reply
  • UpSpin - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    Intel PR, nothing more.
    This article is misleading, confusing and compares totally different things. It's a shame to see such a bad written article on Anandtech, full with meaningless, misleading, graphs, which just sit there, without any further descriptive text. If a image isn't worth some text, it isn't worth to get shown at all!

    1. There's no use in showing and even comparing Total Power Consumption numbers, because the systems are totally different. So don't show them! Everything else is misleading, most probably on purpose because the absolutely low-end Intel device looks good in this comparison, logically. But please, if you can't compare things, don't try to compare them. And if you can't compare them, also don't further use such numbers, like in Task Energy Total Platform. It's useless.
    You can't measure Qualcomm chips correctly, thus include Total Platform power draw? Poor excuse. If you can't measure it, don't post it, but don't post false and misleading numbers.
    2. What is Average Power Draw? What's the use of it? You don't use those graphs in your Article at all! Do you know what this means? Exactly: Those graphs are useless and meaningless. Why do you post them? They are redundant because of the Energy graphs. So naturally, because of the much shorter run time of the A15 SoC, the Average graph looks disadvantageous for ARM, which is simply misleading. But well Intel is probably happy you posted hit and thanked you with cash, why else should a sane person post such misleading stuff.
    3. GPU Power: What game? How did it run? Off-Screen? The same resolution on every tablet? The same API? The same FPS? It's not surprising that a low-end GPU struggling to keep maybe 10FPS consumes less power than a high-end GPU displaying 60FPS at a higher resolution. You haven't said anything about this issue, yet happily compare meaningless numbers.

    I'm sorry but this article is, right now, garbage. And the only reason for posting such a poor written article is that Intel must have paid you a lot of money for doing so.

    It's nice that you post such semi-scientifical articles, but the way you do in this case isn't great.
    This article is very very hard to read, because the reader has to do ALL the interpretation.
    You could remove 2/3 of all graphs, and the article would contain the same information.
    By just looking at the graphs Intel is the overall winner, which is, if you do some further comparisons based on your article wrong. At most Intel is, according to your graphs, on par with A15, CPU wise, which still is a nice outcome for Intel.
    The GPU is awful in the Intel SoC, the CPU competive.
    The A15 GPU is perfect, the CPU at least as efficient as the Intel one, but much faster.
    Yet, because the article is so confusing and I don't want to waste any further time doing the work a good writer should have done, I see ARM as the clear winner.
    Same or more efficient CPU, much faster CPU, much better GPU, overall winner!
    Similar argumentation for Tegra and Krait.
    Intel has a good CPU, but the SoC looks awful.
  • powerarmour - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    "I see ARM as the clear winner.
    Same or more efficient CPU, much faster CPU, much better GPU, overall winner!
    Similar argumentation for Tegra and Krait.
    Intel has a good CPU, but the SoC looks awful."

    That was exactly my conclusion reading through it, I just couldn't be bothered to be eloquent enough to explain it like that as it seemed obvious to me.

    I look at the SoC as a whole, and apart from a 'slight' advantage on the CPU side in a few select (and likely x86 optimized) browser benchmarks, the Clover Trail SoC is really quite lacklustre.
  • mfergus - Friday, January 4, 2013 - link

    The GPU in the clover trail soc isn't even made by Intel. They could swap it out for anything they wanted tho they want it to be an in house gpu. Reply
  • Cold Fussion - Saturday, January 5, 2013 - link

    I concur, the article is pretty bad as it stands. Apart from all the poorly presented information, it should have had tests done on an andriod tablet running the same krait SOC as the windows tablet so we establish how the different operating systems affect power draw. Without that I don't see how they can reasonably establishes the differences between A15 and the others. Reply
  • wsw1982 - Friday, January 11, 2013 - link

    check this out... The clove trail+ in smart phone lenovo K900 scores more than 25000 in Antutu on a 1080P display, which just crush snapdragon pro (4 krait) in Optimus G, and the beloved Samsung Exynos 5440 (2 A15) in Nexus 10...

    So, what gonna be the next far cry from ARMy: "Intel cannot make low power chips"? Oh, no, that's already busted. Then, I guess it gonna be "Intel cannot sell smartphone chips as cheap as others" or "We don't care performance and we don't care battery life, we just care the compatibility to IOS"

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