CPU Performance

Tegra 4 features the fastest ARM CPU configuration of any device we've ever tested. There are four Cortex A15 cores inside running at up to 1.9GHz. Note that 1.9GHz is the max CPU frequency even with all four cores active. Tegra 4 is an absolute beast. Do keep in mind that the Tegra 4 is actively cooled via a fan inside Shield, which does give it a bit more thermal flexibility than what we'd normally find in an Android tablet.

CPU-Z incorrectly identifies Tegra 4 as Tegra 2, the cores and frequencies are accurate though

Looking at even our limited CPU performance suite, the combination of ARM's first 3-issue out-of-order architecture, incredibly high clock speeds and a big chassis to dissipate heat is extremely evident. SunSpider performance is in downright low-frequency Core territory, and it just blows away anything else we've seen from any device running Android or iOS. The comparison in Google's Octane benchmark is still strong, although the Nexus 10 comes very close. Finally, we see great performance in Kraken as well. It's a shame we haven't seen Tegra 4 used in more places, because honestly this thing could make for a killer Windows RT device.

I threw in some of our early Snapdragon 800 performance data, and it looks like Tegra 4 still pulls away with a win in that comparison as well. ARM's Cortex A15 is just insanely quick. Again, there is a fan in Shield - that definitely helps make this possible.

For what it's worth, there's no funny CPU clock boosting going on upon launching any of these tests.

SunSpider 0.9.1 Benchmark

Google Octane v1

Mozilla Kraken Benchmark (Stock Browser)

Gaming on Shield - Android, PC, AR Drone 2.0 GPU Performance - 3DMark & Basemark X
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  • chizow - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    I agree, I think it's an extremely impressive first effort, I just don't know if it will do well enough to warrant future iterations and improvements.
  • danstek - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    This thing has a better WiFi implementation than most laptops and game consoles? What...
  • whyso - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    Actually seems like a win.
    The question is if there is a market for this sort of device.
  • Jumangi - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    There's is no question about a market...none exists for this device. Nvidia made this thing to show off the Tegra 4.
  • Dribble - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    Users of the PS Vita, Nintendo DS, etc would disagree with you. There is a market, a pretty big one.
  • darkich - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    ..and this device absolutely blows every one of them away.
  • Spunjji - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    Literally. With its fan.
    -badum tsh-
  • Jumangi - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    Lolz, The 3D DS is doing well because its Nintendo with their long history of portables but its on a pace well behind it predecessor. The Vita? Its a dead machine for now. Sales are horrible. This device costs more and has far less software gaming support. So looking at reality no their is no market for a $300 portable gaming machine.
  • Touche - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    You mean, they made it because nobody else wanted Tegra 4.
  • tabascosauz - Thursday, August 1, 2013 - link

    The 4 and 4i Phoenix FFRDs served that purpose, and they did it fairly successfully. So no, the Shield is Nvidia's entry into the DS and Vita world.

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