Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 vs Apple A15 Bionic: The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is among the few SoCs to be fabricated on a 4nm node. And it is expected to power most of the flagship smartphones in 2022, including Xiaomi 12 and Galaxy S22 series. In contrast, Apple’s A15 Bionic powers the iPhone 13 and the new Apple iPad.
But does the fact that the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is built on a 4nm process mean it is faster than the A15 Bionic chipset? Well, in this comparison post we’re going to focus on CPU, GPU, Connectivity, ISP, etc.
Starting with the manufacturing process, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 uses a newer process of 4nm. While the Apple A15 Bionic was built on a 5nm process by TSMC. The A15 Bionic fabrication process is one generation behind the Snapdragon’s 4nm node.
In the chipset world, the smaller the node the better it is because it results in power efficiency and thermal optimization. Therefore, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip has an edge over Apple A15 Bionic here.
Both chipsets have different CPU designs. Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 has a 1+3+4 octa-core CPU design, while Apple A15 Bionic has a 2+4 Hexa-core CPU architecture.
|CPU Core||Snapdragon 8 Gen 1||A15 Bionic|
|Power Cores||1x Cortex-X2||2x Avalanche |
|Speed||3.0 GHz||3.2 GHz|
Looking at the above the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 has more CPU cores, but does that make it faster and better? Not necessarily.
In a real-time test on Geekbench v5, the Apple A15 Bionic beats the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 on total scores. However, on AnTuTu, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 tops by scoring over a million points.
According to Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 will offer the best performance for flagship Android smartphones in 2022. However, it will have a lot to prove when it comes to the A15 Bionic which is currently the fastest chip at the moment.
Apple A15 Bionic has 5 cores GPU with a peak frequency of up to 1200MHz. When it comes to graphics rendering, the new Apple GPU is top-notch and it does so while consuming less battery life. Which is something Qualcomm has fixed with the new Adreno GPU on Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.
According to Qualcomm, the newest Adreno GPU has a 30% performance boost when compared to the Snapdragon 888. And moreover, because of the chip architecture, the Adreno GPU performs way better than its predecessor while consuming 25% less battery. Which is a big deal.
Moreover, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Adreno’s GPU also brings some cool features that will enhance the gaming experience (Frame Motion Engine, Volumetric lighting, and Variable Rate Shading Pro). These features will allow game developers to strike a balance between performance and power efficiency. We hope smartphone companies and game developers will take full advantage of this hardware.
Photography and videography quality are now fundamentals of modern smartphones. And to meet up to high expectations, chipset makers must bring advanced image signal processors (ISP). In this segment of ISP, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 has an edge over its rival A15 Bionic.
Qualcomm called its new ISP “Snapdragon Sight” which can process up to 3.2 gigapixels per second. The 18-bit HDR ISP gives support of up to 200MP single sensor and can record video of up to 8k resolution. While shooting in 8k it can do Electronic Image Stabilization at the same time. Also, the user can snap 64 MP photos while recording an 8K/30 video. In fact, the Snapdragon’s ISP is intriguing.
On the other hand, the image signal processor (ISP) of the Apple A15 Bionic has some limitations. For example, it can’t record in 8K HDR. The max resolution for the A15 Bionic to record is 4K HDR Dolby Vision videos at 60FPS and it can also handle ProRes RAW footage at 4K 30FPS. The ISP does well with Apple’s computational photography, the new Cinematic Mode feature, live filters, etc.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 brings Bluetooth 5.2, while the Apple A15 Bionic has Bluetooth 5.0 support which is generations behind. And both chipsets when it comes to 5G – support Sub-6GHz and mmWave.
Moreover, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 has the newest speedy 5G modem X65 which can download up to 10Gbps, while A15 Bionic has a slower modem X60 which can download up to 7.5Gbps.
Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 vs Apple A15 Bionic: Conclusion
So who wins the chipset war between the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 vs Apple A15 Bionic? Well, it goes like this. Apple A15 Bionic has swifter performance, it remains superior when it comes to CPU and GPU. Although the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 did try to close up the gap.
Moreover, when it comes to ISP, display, AI, and ML, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is superior. It is more sophisticated in those areas and if only tech companies would take full advantage of the hardware, forthcoming 2022 flagship Androids will have sterling performance.