System Performance Cont'd: GPU Performance

As previously mentioned, the Galaxy S6 uses a Mali T760MP8 clocked at 772 MHz, which should provide a healthy improvement in GPU performance over the Exynos 5433. To test this, we run through our standard suite of game-style GPU benchmarks. However, there are still some CPU benchmarks present within these tests such as the 3DMark physics test. In general though, a strong GPU is needed to perform well in these tests. For those interested in an architectural deep-dive of the Mali T760, I would refer to Ryan’s article on the Midgard architecture for more information.

3DMark 1.2 Unlimited - Overall

3DMark 1.2 Unlimited - Graphics

3DMark 1.2 Unlimited - Physics

The Galaxy S6 starts out fairly strong in 3DMark. Overall performance is boosted by a chart-topping physics score, while pure graphics performance trails a bit. In this case the S6 is roughly on par with the iPhone 6 Plus, but would have to close quite a gap to catch up to the HTC One (M9).

BaseMark X 1.1 - Overall (High Quality)

BaseMark X 1.1 - Dunes (High Quality, Offscreen)

BaseMark X 1.1 - Hangar (High Quality, Offscreen)

BaseMark X finds the S6 the runaway winner. The phone is well ahead in both the Dunes and Hangar test, beating the next-best phones (primarily Adreno 420/430 based) by 25% or more depending on the test. The increase over the S5 is especially remarkable; Samsung has more than doubled their performance in this benchmark in barely a year.

GFXBench 3.0 Manhattan (Onscreen)

GFXBench 3.0 Manhattan (Offscreen)

GFXBench 3.0 T-Rex HD (Onscreen)

GFXBench 3.0 T-Rex HD (Offscreen)

GFXBench 3.0 is another strong showing for the S6. In both offscreen tests it's 15% or more ahead of the next closest phone, which is once again the HTC One (M9). Meanwhile compared once more to the S5, Samsung's performance has more than doubled. Consequently even the onscreen tests show significant gains, as the GPU performance gain more than outstrips the additional performance required to drive the higher resolution 1440p AMOLED display of the S6.

Overall, as we can see the performance of the S6 is in line for what is expected from its Mali T760MP8 configuration. Interestingly though the phone's performance exceeds the scaling we'd expect from adding two shader cores and increasing frequency to 772 MHz, as compared to the Exynos 5433-powered Note 4 Exynos. This suggests that the Exynos 5433's GPU was bandwidth-limited to some extent, in addition to any possible thermal throttling that would occur over the course of a GFXBench run. But I suspect we'll have to save the deep dive for a future article as I can't take the review unit apart to find out.

System Performance NAND Performance: The First UFS Phone
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  • Inteli - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    While no removable battery is workable (if disappointing), I dislike the removal of the SD Card slot in favor of being more iPhone-like, since it allows for more storage (and I don't have to worry about clearing stuff out for updates). Hopefully Samsung won't go this way with the Note 4, or else that might very well be my last Samsung phone. Reply
  • Inteli - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    And by Note 4, I meant Note 5. Reply
  • Vandam500 - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    I doubt it man. The Note 5 will likely be very similar to the GS6 which means no removable battery and no microSD card slot. Reply
  • mindracer - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    I have a feeling Samsung will keep the Note series as it's "productivity/business class", be like the GS6 but with removable storage and battery, and make the GN5 the top of the line in design and features for the real heavy user. Reply
  • Solandri - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    What I don't get is, Samsung makes like two dozen different smartphones. Why can't they make two top-tier phones - one with the "everything sealed" philosophy and another with the "user can replace the battery and microSD card" philosophy, both using the same screen, processor, camera, etc.? Reply
  • lyricalsaint - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    Probably because Apple has been so successful with marketing theory, and Samsung wants to copy their concept of giving consumers limited choices. Too many choices can put people into somewhat of a decision paralysis. Reply
  • Gigaplex - Friday, April 17, 2015 - link

    But it's too late for that, Samsung already has too many choices. Reply
  • joos2000 - Saturday, April 18, 2015 - link

    It isn't hard to cut models to reduce choice really. They can slim down their product line in months. Reply
  • MacDaddy100 - Friday, April 24, 2015 - link

    It's not a marketing theory, its not many people give a rats a$$ about removable batteries and upgrade memory cards, I plug my phone in at night like 99% of the people do, I have 128gb of internal memory that hold my 10K (High Bit Rate) song library with room left over that very few people even want to do with Pandora and such that don't need the internal memory. Quit living in the 90s, everything thing is online, or in the cloud now. Reply
  • peterfares - Saturday, April 25, 2015 - link

    So then why didn't you just get the 32GB model? Reply

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