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Cellphones Handhelds Upgrades Hardware

Qualcomm Unveils Snapdragon 820 With Adreno 530 Graphics For Mobile Devices (hothardware.com) 34

MojoKid writes: Qualcomm held an event in New York City today to demonstrate for the first time its highly anticipated Snapdragon 820 System-on-Chip (SoC). More than just a speed bump and refresh of the Snapdragon 810, Qualcomm says it designed the Snapdragon 820 "from the ground up to be unlike anything else." Behind that marketing spin is indeed an SoC with a custom 64-bit quad-core Kyro processor clocked at up to 2.2GHz. Qualcomm says it delivers up to twice the performance and twice the power efficiency of its predecessor, which is in fact an 8-core chip. Qualcomm officials have quoted 2x the performance of their previous gen Snapdragon 810 in single threaded throughput alone, which is a sizable gain. Efficiency is also being touted here, and according to Qualcomm, the improvements it made to the underlying architecture translate into nearly a third (30 percent) less power consumption. That should help the Snapdragon 820 steer clear of overheating concerns, which is something the 810 wasn't able to do.
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Qualcomm Unveils Snapdragon 820 With Adreno 530 Graphics For Mobile Devices

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  • Anyone else (Score:4, Funny)

    by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Tuesday November 10, 2015 @05:20PM (#50904771) Homepage Journal

    Anyone else remember when Qualcomm used to make lawnmowers?

    • Anyone else remember when Qualcomm used to make lawnmowers?

      I certainly do. Their 810 processor runs so hot [arstechnica.com] that it's clear to me it runs on gasoline.

  • I'm rather excited about this as Qualcomm's Krait-based SoCs were a cut above the rest of the options available for Android devices at the time and only when Qualcomm used the stock ARM design and big.LITTLE configuration did their performance degrade. AnandTech had a recent review that mentioned this problem specifically: [anandtech.com]

    The key points to get from the graphs above are that for some reason the Snapdragon 800 SoC in the Nexus 5 only ends up using 3 of its 4 cores most of the time, with the frequency on the other three Krait 400 cores oscillating between 1GHz and 1.6GHz. The Snapdragon 805 in the Nexus 6 keeps all four cores at their max frequency for about twelve minutes before they all throttle down to 2GHz and remain there for nearly two hours. Meanwhile, Snapdragon 808 can only keep its two A57 cores at their peak frequency for two minutes before throttling both down to 633MHz and putting the A53s up to their peak 1.44GHz. After twelve minutes the A57s are just shut off entirely, and you're left with a cluster of 4 A53 cores at 1.44GHz. I didn't bother running this test as long as I did for Snapdragon 800 and 805 because the events at the two and twelve minute marks tell you everything you need to know.

    Part of the blame is probably the 20 nm TSMC node that apparently had problems with leakage at higher voltages, but that's unlikely to be the only issue.

  • As we know, Apple uses its own A-series in the iPhones, iPads and iPods. What does Samsung use? That leaves Microsoft, which is one company that uses Qualcomm's processors. Anyone know what the Lumia 950 uses?
    • by viperidaenz ( 2515578 ) on Tuesday November 10, 2015 @06:08PM (#50905039)

      My Moto X has a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor.
      The LG Nexus 5X does too.
      OnePlus One
      A whole bunch of Samsung phones too

      Actually, the majority of the Android phones currently available.

    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      As we know, Apple uses its own A-series in the iPhones, iPads and iPods. What does Samsung use? That leaves Microsoft, which is one company that uses Qualcomm's processors. Anyone know what the Lumia 950 uses?

      Apple has their own processors.
      Samsung has their own processors

      Everyone else has to use Qualcomm if you want a high end processor, else a MediaTek or RockChip if you want a mid-range processor.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Most US versions of Samsung phones have Qualcomm processors. There are more snapdragons for mobile processors than probably any other manufacturer.

  • I worked at Qualcomm for some 9 years over 2 sessions. Taking a standard ARM core and improving it was their secret sauce for years. They even made money selling their improvements back to ARM. But talking to friends who still work there, Qualcomm is using more standard ARM and adding less secret sauce.

    Qualcomm is the best place I've ever worked for (37 years in the industry). My insiders tell me the QC I knew and loved was taken behind the barn and shot by Paul Jacobs, and it's nothing like what I r
  • That's a big improvement, but twice the performance would still mean behind Apple. Twice the 810's performance would mean Typhoon (A8) caught, but Twister/A9 still quite a bit ahead. Not the best news for higher end users (e.g., Samsung) trying to compete directly with Apple. At least sounds like overheating dealt with.

    • by afidel ( 530433 )

      The A9 isn't that far ahead [techgrapple.com] unless you want to focus only on single core metrics. The only metric with a significant margin is multicore FP and nobody really cares because you'll pass any tough FP off to the GPU and the 810 is already about 75% as fast as the A9 in Manhattan offscreen so doubling GPU performance would give it a significant lead (but that's not a given since I haven't seen anything about the GPU being double). This really shouldn't be a surprise since they're similar core architectures on th

  • ...but can it run Crysis?

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