Modern Combat 5 Playing

Trying out another popular high-end game, we have a look at Modern Combat 5. This one of many first-person shooters on Android.

The little cluster looks to behave extremely similar to what we saw in Real Racing 3: Three larger threads keep 3 of the cluster's CPU at relatively busy duty-cycles while we see some limited activity on the 4th core.

The big cluster also seems to behave in a similar fashion. One big main thread causes the bulk of the load while we only have occasional small bursts when threads get migrated onto the big cluster. This time we see a more variable load both in terms of requency and rq-depth instead of the flat-line that could be observed in Real Racing 3. 

One interesting behaviour caught in this log was how the main big thread got moved around from CPU6 to CPU4 and then again to CPU5 on the 33s mark in the log.

Even though the total rq-depth might be a bit misleading here while it's showing an average of around 2.5, we can see that in the individual per-CPU runqueues we have 4 major threads at work. Again this is a case of using parallelization for the sake of power efficiency instead of performance. The 3 smaller threads on the little cores could have well been handled by a single larger CPU at higher frequency, but it wouldn't have been nearly as power efficient as spreading them onto the smaller cores.

Games: Real Racing 3 Playing Analysis & Conclusion


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  • Gigaplex - Thursday, September 3, 2015 - link

    An interesting and thorough analysis, although I'm concerned at some of the assumptions made in some of the conclusions. Just because a queue of 4 threads makes all the 8 big.LITTLE cores active doesn't mean that the architecture is effective. For all we know, the threads are thrashing back and forth, draining precious performance per watt. Reply
  • darkich - Friday, September 4, 2015 - link

    Andrei, your articles are in a league of their own. Thanks for the great work Reply
  • melgross - Thursday, September 10, 2015 - link

    I'm still not convinced. The fact that it's doing what it does on these chips doesn't mean that their performance is as good as it could be, or that power efficiency is as good. We really need to see two to four core designs, with cores that are really more powerful, to make a proper comparison. We don't have that with the chips tested. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Thursday, October 8, 2015 - link

    Exactly. It should at least show a design with a small number of powerful cores. Obviously with Apple's A series chips you have the issue of dealing with a different operating system underneath, but can't they use a Tegra K1 or something? Reply
  • Hydrargyrum - Friday, September 25, 2015 - link

    The stacked frequency distribution graphs would be a *lot* easier to read if you used a consistent range of different saturations/intensities of a single colour (e.g. go from bright=fast to dark=slow), or a single pass from red to blue through the ROYGBIV colour spectrum (e.g. red=fast, blue=slow), to represent the range of frequencies.

    By going around the colour wheel multiple times in the colour coding it's *really* hard to tell whether a given area of the graph is high or low frequency. The difference in colour between 1400/800, 1296/700, and 1200/600 are very subtle to say the least.
  • Ethos Evoss - Thursday, November 12, 2015 - link

    anandtech always uses weird non-popular words on its own site type ''heterogeneous '' never heard in my life and even usa or uk ppl have to search in cambridge/oxford dictionary :DDD
    Immediately u can say it is DEFO NOT USA or UK website.. They do not use such difficult words AT ALL :)
  • Ethos Evoss - Thursday, November 12, 2015 - link

    ANd mainly they use when it comes to china products .. like mediatek or kirin or big.little topic etc..
    This site is DEVOURED or we could say powered by :)

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