Geekbench 4: Snapdragon 820 vs A9 vs Exynos 8890

As you probably know, Geekbench 4 was released yesterday making a whole lot of changes from Geekbench 3. The changed tests and baseline changed the rankings between processors a bit and is generating a lot of buzz, and along with it comes a lot of misinformation. 

So let's investigate this further and see how the scores have changed and why? 



What has changed?

The most important changes are:
  • Removal of memory bandwidth section from the CPU section of the benchmark, and getting added to the single core and multi core tests with less weightage. 
  • Addition of a new GPU compute test. Good if you want to get into GPU compute, however not so useful on mobile devices. 
  • The desktop and mobile workloads are the exact same now with the same dataset, unlike geekbench 3. 
  • Changed interface: material design for android, updated interface for iOS and windows. 
  • Changed baseline: Score 4000 for i5-6600U in Geekbench 4 from 2500 for i5-2520M in Geekbench 3. 
  • Calculates scores by weighted average instead of geometric means. 




Exynos 8890 vs A9 vs Snapdragon 820

Single core performance

We can see that the A9 remains in lead here, increasing the gap further from the Snapdragon 820 and the Exynos 8890. 





The exynos 8890 is by far the fastest android SoC on the market right now. It's a shame that even it falls short of the A9's monstrous twister cores. The gap will be compounded by the release of the Apple A10 with the iPhone 7 and 7 plus this week. 

Multi core performance

Here it's expected to see android SoCs shine due to their multi-core designs. The Exynos 8890 uses a 4 core Mongoose custom design cores with 4 power saving A53 cores. Snapdragon 820 uses 2 high performance Kryo cores at 2.2 GHz with 2 power saving Kyro cores at 1.6 GHz. The A9 just uses two super high performance twister cores with their 6-way superscalar design. 



Here we can see the multi-core design of the Exynos 8890 come to fruition. The multi-core score easily beats out the A9 as well as the 820 by a mile. In heavily multi-threaded tasks, expect the 8890 to be a very fast chip and close to desktop based i3 in performance. 


Compute

The compute benchmark(renderscript) doesn't work with iOS currently. Hopefully they will make one soon which works with the imagination GPUs on smartphones. 

Also, the usability of compute benchmarks is quite useless on smartphones since off the top of my head, I can't think of any application that uses it. Anyway, as we can clearly see that by virtue of high FLOPS or high compute, the adreno 530 demolishes the Mali T880 MP12. 




Conclusion

The test doesn't hold much significance now since the new A10 'fusion' is going to be released soon. But it's an early indication on how Geekbench 4 has altered the mobile CPU rankings. 

Earlier with geekbench 3, we had the Snapdragon 820 faster than the 8890 in single core tasks and quite close to the A9. However, that was mostly due to the super fast memory bandwidth of the 8890, which has been given a a lower weightage now compared to integer and floating point calculations, which makes more sense from a real life perspective. 

The overall conclusion is that the Exynos 8890 is the fastest you can get on android right now, with the A9 beating it in single core performance, and soon the A10 too.

iPhones will remain the fastest phones in the market mostly due to app optimizations, lack of fragmentation and the SLC cache used by Apple which leads to insane loading times. Android still has ways to go before it reaches the level of performance. 





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