GPU Performance

Both CPU and GPU clocks are higher on Samsung's version of the Snapdragon 600 (APQ8064AB). While the Snapdragon 600 used in HTC's One (APQ8064T) features a max GPU frequency of 400MHz, in the Galaxy S 4 the max frequency moves up to 450MHz. The increase in max frequency alone is modest (~12.5%), but the gains in GLBenchmark are far more pronounced for whatever reason.

As always, we'll start with low level analysis beginning with GLBenchmark's fill rate test:

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Fill Test

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Fill Test (Offscreen 1080p)

Interestingly enough, fill rate is actually lower than on the HTC One. With so many variables at work here it's difficult to say exactly why this is, but the lowest hanging fruit is to blame it on memory bandwidth differences. Without getting inside the Galaxy S 4 (or more extensive poking around) it's unclear what speed Samsung is running its memory at, which could explain the differences here. We tried tossing the Galaxy S 4 in the freezer and re-running the test but performance didn't improve substantially. Note that GLB's fill rate benchmark is the only one that did not show the Galaxy S 4 ahead of HTC's One in raw performance.

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test (Offscreen 1080p)

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test - Vertex Lit

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test - Vertex Lit (Offscreen 1080p)

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test - Fragment Lit

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Triangle Texture Test - Fragment Lit (Offscreen 1080p)

The low level triangle tests all show significant performance gains over the only other Snapdragon 600 based phone we have (HTC One). Again, I'm not really sure what's going on here with APQ8064AB but the gains here are greater than what clock speed alone can be responsible for. Samsung could be running at higher GPU frequencies more aggressively than HTC or it could have software advantages (a newer Adreno driver perhaps?) or there could be more to this APQ8064AB mystery than we realize.

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt HD

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt HD (Offscreen 1080p)

Egypt HD delivers a fairly sane number however. The Galaxy S 4 manages to outperform the HTC One by around 17% here. Again it's unclear why we're seeing greater performance than clock scaling alone would provide but the net is that the Galaxy S 4 does deliver better GPU performance than other Snapdragon 600 based devices today.

CPU Performance NAND Performance
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  • alexvoda - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    The smaller display on the HTC is a plus point.
    However even the HTC is too large for me.
    The perfect phone for me would probably be the Xiaomi Mi2S. The only thing it lacks is MicroSD, and popularity(support from XDA for alternative roms).
    http://www.gsmarena.com/xiaomi_mi_2s-5397.php
    Reply
  • danbob999 - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    You could get an S4. It is smaller than the One.
    It's never the display that is too large. It's the phone.
    Reply
  • darwinosx - Saturday, April 27, 2013 - link

    You might have a point if everything you said wasn't wrong. Reply
  • angrypat - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    Form follows function, if it does what it is supposed to and fits your need then that is what matters. If you just want the fanciest piece to show off to friends then you should speak to a professional about inadequacy issues or buy a gold plated iPhone. What are you going to do with it, use it, or just sit and stare at it as if it were a rare jewel. It's a phone/toy/tool not a Rolex to wear to dinner parties. Reply
  • spookyjess - Friday, July 19, 2013 - link

    I'd rather not have a phone that's built to be destroyed on FIRST impact...since I paid so much money. Reply
  • EnzoFX - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    Because S4 buyers don't buy for looks or vanity? S4 is a looker to some people, there's no denying that. I'm sure we can all imagine an ugly 5" phone.... So don't erect straw man. HTC One is just better in the looks department to most. Reply
  • dyc4ha - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    lol look at all the designer labels, appearance matters in real life I assure you. Reply
  • MrSpadge - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    He didn't say he would. Reply
  • Reikon - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    Is it that hard to realize that a lot people don't actually use cases for their phones? Reply
  • darwinosx - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    I never use a case. Lots of people don't. Quit making excuses for Samsungs cheapness. Reply

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