Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx vs Microsoft SQ1

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx

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The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx Compute Platform (or SD8cx) is a ARM based SoC for Windows laptops. It integrates a similar CPU part as the Snapdragon 855 (same cores but without the Prime Core feature) and is manufactured in 7nm at TSMC. The 4 Kryo 495 Gold cores are based on the ARM Cortex-A76 architecture (for performance) and clocked at 2.84 GHz under load (no single core Turbo). The 4 Kryo 495 Silver cores are small ARM Cortex-A55 cores for power efficiency and clocked at 1.9 GHz under load. According to Qualcomm, the clock speed should not be reduced under constant load with typical (fanless) cooling. The integrated X24 LTE modem supports up to 2 Gbps download speeds. Furthermore, the SoC integrates ac-Wifi and a dual-channel 32-bit 1866 MHz LPDDR4x memory controller.

The processor performance should be similar to a Intel Core i5 8th gen U-series (e.g. i5-8250U) according to Qualcomm. However, this is only the case for native ARM64 compiled Windows apps which are not that many (in mid 2019). 32 bit applications and games for AMD/Intel run in a rather slow emulation and 65 bit apps wont start at all.

The integrated Adreno 680 graphics card is a beefier version of the Adreno 640 in the Snapdragon 855 and should be twice as fast as the old Adreno 630 (in Windows laptops) and offer a 60% higher efficiency.

The chip is very power efficient as its produced at TSMC in the modern 7 process. Therefore, laptops using the Snapdragon 8cx can be passively cooled (no fan) and should not throttle under constant load.

Microsoft SQ1

► remove Qualcomm SQ1

The Microsoft SQ1 is a ARM based SoC for Windows tablets (Surface Pro X). It is based on the Snapdragon 8cx but with higher clocked CPU and GPU cores. The CPU cores clock with up to 3 GHz. The 4 Kryo 495 Gold cores are based on the ARM Cortex-A76 architecture (for performance) and clocked at up to 3 GHz (2.84 GHz  for the 8cx) under load (no single core Turbo). The 4 Kryo 495 Silver cores are small ARM Cortex-A55 cores for power efficiency and clocked at 1.9 GHz (unverified) under load. The integrated X24 LTE modem supports up to 2 Gbps download speeds. Furthermore, the SoC integrates ac-Wifi and a dual-channel 32-bit 1866 MHz LPDDR4x memory controller.

The processor performance should be similar to a Intel Core i5 8th gen U-series (e.g. i5-8250U) according to Qualcomm. However, this is only the case for native ARM64 compiled Windows apps which are not that many (in mid 2019). 32 bit applications and games for AMD/Intel run in a rather slow emulation and 65 bit apps wont start at all.

The integrated Adreno 685 graphics card is a higher clocked version of the Adreno 680 in the Snapdragon 8cx. Microsoft claims 2 TFlops theoretical performance compared to the 1.8 for the Adreno 680 (+11%).

The chip is very power efficient as its produced at TSMC in the modern 7 process. Therefore, laptops using the Snapdragon 8cx can be passively cooled (no fan) and should not throttle under constant load.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cxMicrosoft SQ1
Qualcomm SnapdragonQualcomm Snapdragon
Cortex-A76 / A55 (Kryo 495)Cortex-A76 / A55 (Kryo 495)
: Snapdragon Cortex-A76 / A55 (Kryo 495)
Microsoft SQ13000 MHz8 / 82 MB
» Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx2840 MHz8 / 82 MB
» Microsoft SQ13000 MHz8 / 82 MB
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx2840 MHz8 / 82 MB
2840 MHz3000 MHz
2 MB2 MB
8 / 88 / 8
7 7
X24 LTE Modem, Adreno 680 GPUX24 LTE Modem, Adreno 685 GPU
iGPUQualcomm Adreno 680Qualcomm Adreno 685
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cxQualcomm Snapdragon SQ1

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* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance
1 This benchmark is not used for the average calculation

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Redaktion, 2017-09- 8 (Update: 2017-09-11)