Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: Qualcomm has led the flagship chipset market for a long time. But in recent years, the company has kind of dropped off and allowed Apple to take over with its A Bionic chipset and MediaTek to catch up with its Dimensity chipset. However, Qualcomm might be making a statement with the release of its new Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset.
The new Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset is priding itself as one of the best chipsets you’ll see in a smartphone in 2023. There are so many things that Qualcomm has changed including the architecture of the chipset and the introduction of new AI capabilities. All these new features are aimed at improving the overall performance of the chipset and from the paper specs, it did.
So, in this post, I’ll be showing you the specs of the new chipset from Qualcomm. I’ll also explain the areas of improvement and why many think the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 might be as good if not better than the Apple A16 Bionic chipset.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 Specs
|Performance Cores||1x Cortex-X3|
|Prime Cores||2x Cortex-A715|
|Prime Cores||2x Cortex-A710|
|Efficiency Cores||3x Cortex-A510|
|5G MODEM||X70 5G Modem|
Process Technology & Power Management
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is built on TSMC’s second generation of 4nm process technology. And if you’re familiar with the fabrication process, you’ll know that the smaller the process technology, the better. But what makes the fabrication process more power efficient is the CPU architecture of the chipset.
Previously, Qualcomm had arranged its octa-core CPU to be one performance core, three prime cores, and four efficiency cores. However, the company changed the arrangement in this new chipset. The octa-core CPU of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is one performance core, two big prime cores, two small prime cores, and three efficiency cores.
Granted, the efficiency cores are reduced by one but it now has four prime cores. This means the CPU will be faster and if the CPU is faster, it’ll process data more quickly and won’t power for a longer time. According to Qualcomm, the CPU performance improved by 35% while the power efficiency of this chipset improved by 40%.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: CPU and GPU
As stated above, the CPU arrangement of this chipset is different. It has one performance core 1x Cortex-X3 with a speed of 3.2GHz, two prime cores 2x Cortex-X715 with a speed of 2.8GHz, two prime cores 2x Cortex-X710 with a speed frequency of 2.0GHz, and three efficiency cores 3x Cortex-510 with a speed of 2.0GHz.
These CPU cores are paired with the Adreno 740 GPU which has features such as Real-Time Hardware Accelerated Ray Tracing, Game Post Processing Accelerator, HDR10 Gaming, Snapdragon Shadow Denoiser, etc. Both the CPU and GPU of this chipset have been optimized for performance.
The chipset now features newer and faster CPU cores with a different CPU arrangement and the GPU is now more optimized for playing games. These new changes explain why many people think the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 will be as good if not better than the A16 Bionic chipset.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: AI and ISP
Qualcomm has equipped this chipset with an improved AI and ISP. The AI is the Qualcomm Hexagon Processor and it has the following features:
- Fused AI Accelerator architecture
- Qualcomm Hexagon Vector eXtensions (HVX)
- Dedicated power delivery system
- Micro tile inferencing
- Qualcomm Hexagon Scalar Accelerator
- Qualcomm Hexagon Tensor Accelerator
- Hexagon Direct Link
The AI also features the Qualcomm Sensing Hub which has a Dual-core AI processor and an Always-sensing camera. So live translation and automation are all available in phones that will use this chipset. Plus, the AI is also connected to the CPU and GPU of this chipset for improved performance.
The ISP (Image Signal Processing) in this chipset is an improved Qualcomm Spectra. This is a Triple 18-bit ISPs, Hardware accelerator for computer vision (CV-ISP) that supports Real-time Semantic Segmentation Photo and Video Processing and up to 200MP camera sensor. The following are the available camera features of the ISP:
- Multi-frame Noise Reduction (MFNR)
- Locally Motion Compensated Temporal Filtering
- AI-based face detection
- auto-focus and auto-exposure
- Mega Low light photography
- Engine for Visual Analytics 3.0
When it comes to video, the ISP allows phones to capture slow motion video in 720p resolution @ 960FPS and video capture formats are Dolby Vision, HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG. The video capture is up to 8K 30fps or 4K 120fps video capture and some of the available video capture features are:
- Bokeh Engine version 2 for Video Capture
- Video super-resolution
- Engine for Visual Analytics 3.0
The ISP and AI engines on this chipset have been improved by Qualcomm to deliver better performance. There are now more AI features and a better ISP that will process images better and output better photos and video quality.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: Display and Audio
In the areas of display, phones powered by this chipset can have up to 4K display @ 60Hz and QHD+ display @ 144Hz refresh rate. The display supports HDR10+, HDR10, HDR Vivid, Color Gamut: Rec2020, and Color Depth: Up to 10-bit.
As for the Audio, the chipset is equipped with Qualcomm Aqstic technology. It features the Qualcomm Aqstic audio codec and Qualcomm Aqstic smart speaker amplifier. It also supports Qualcomm aptX Voice, Qualcomm aptX Lossless, and Qualcomm aptX Adaptive.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: Connectivity
Available connectivity options include 5G, Wi-Fi, NFC, Bluetooth, Location, USB, etc. The 5G MODEM inside this chipset is Snapdragon X70 5G Modem-RF System. Its peak download speed is 10Gbps and its peak upload speed is 3.5Gbps. The 5G MODEM also supports 8 carriers (mmWave), 4×4 MIMO (Sub-6), and 2×2 MIMO (mmWave).
The Wi-Fi and Bluetooth system in this chipset is Qualcomm® FastConnect 7800. It has a Wi-Fi 7 with a peak Wi-Fi speed of 5.8Gbps. The Bluetooth version is Bluetooth 5.3 and has features such as LE Audio Features, Dual Bluetooth, and Snapdragon Sound technology suite.
For the location, the chipset support satellite systems like BeiDou, Galileo, GLONASS, NavIC, GPS, and QZSS. It features the Qualcomm Location Suite and supports NFC, USB 3.1, and USB-C.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2: Conclusion
The specs of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 shows that the company is ready to close the gap between the performance of its chispet and that of Apple. It also shows that Qualcomm is ready to increase the gap between its chipset and those of MediaTek.
There are lots of improvements in the CPU, GPU, AI, ISP, display, and connectivity. We understand that not all OEMs will implement the features that this chipset has to offer. But if these OEMs use 90% of these features in phones powered by this chipset, you will be surprised how good a phone powered by this chipset will be.
Yes, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is focused on power and this can be clearly seen from the new arrangement of the CPU cores. We hope to see how well phones powered by this chipset perform by the end of this year. Companies like Xiaomi, Motorola, and vivo will be among the first OEMs to use this chipset in their smartphones.