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
POST A COMMENT

335 Comments

View All Comments

  • redchar - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    I'm shocked to hear on a tech site that there's a person who would prefer the HTC One. And why not plastic? It's no mystery why plastic is a popular material. It's lightweight, cost efficient, and comes in a variety of styles and textures to allow creativity and good looks (granted, samsung's plastic is rather bland compared to the type you'd find on older HTC phones). Beyond that, plastic even has

    /plasticity/

    That's right. A type of material that withstands drops instead of denting, being put on mobile devices such as laptops and phones. Crazy, right? I wish HTC would go back to plastic, among other bad changes they've made.

    And to top it off, the HTC One, like many "high end" HTC phones as of late, does not include a memory slot or a removable battery. With such useful, and easy-to-implement features, it's a wonder that anyone would consider it a high end phone. And no surprise that galaxy phones all sell very well during a time where the industry is leaving out major functionality and at the same time struggling to sell as many units as they'd like (I wonder why?).

    While the SGS4 is by no means a perfect device (it's too large, and with a pointlessly high resolution screen that might impact performance in some way [perhaps battery life as a result of trying to maintain good screen brightness, or stressing the GPU more]), it does contain a list of features that you'd expect for a phone of its price. The only thing the HTC One has over it is the sort of camera people wanted all along: quality, not megapixels.
    Reply
  • MilwaukeeMike - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    While I understand you're point, there are a lot of people who disagree with you. The iPhone has no SD card, no removable battery and is made out of metal and it's sold quite well. I've always ripped them for leaving out a card slot and charging $100 for an extra 16GB. But HTC gives you 32GB in it's base model and charges more for an extra 32, not 16. They also have USB on-the-go, which allows your phone to host a USB drive with a $3 adapter. Sure, that's a workaround, but it's enough for me. No removable battery is a bit of a bummer, but my battery is still going strong 30 months later in my current phone, so I'm not worried about it getting old and dying. I also have chargers everywhere because micro USB is so common, so I'm not worried about getting stranded either. Reply
  • Thegonagle - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    Plastic is lower cost than metal for Samsung, but not necessarily for me. As a consumer, Samsung's cost is irrelevant. Please don't mention the cost merits of plastic until the S4 is less expensive than the HTC One. Reply
  • crypticsaga - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    ^This. I don't understand why with the iphone5 and HTC one available anyone would buy a Samsung S. You get less for more money. If you make the argument about battery and SD card then I would expect that you use more than 32GB of space and carry around a spare battery in your pocket. The funny thing is I have yet to meet a samsung owner who actually does. Reply
  • danbob999 - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    You get a faster SoC, more sensors, a larger display, a smaller and lighter device, a larger battery and more supported LTE bands.
    Not everyone cares about the look of a phone.
    Reply
  • sigmatau - Thursday, April 25, 2013 - link

    You also get a worse screen and speaker than the HTC One. Reply
  • mrochester - Friday, April 26, 2013 - link

    Those features are of questionable day to day value, however. I gain far more from having a device that looks great every time I use it in comparison to features I might use once in a blue moon, but the device is sinfully ugly. Reply
  • tipoo - Sunday, April 28, 2013 - link

    The SoC is basically a wash between the One and the S4, it's the same SoC just with the slightest amount more speed in one. Reply
  • dyc4ha - Wednesday, April 24, 2013 - link

    That is like saying I bought a Ferrari with cheap plastic seats while the same-priced Lambo came with leather seats and it doesnt matter to you. Wha? Reply
  • blue_urban_sky - Friday, April 26, 2013 - link

    Yes that is exactly what its like saying. because everyone has the same priorities as you and will buy a super car based on seat material. Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now