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Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 successor codenamed Qualcomm SC8280 could debut 'Gold+' cores for better single and multi-threaded performance

Qualcomm's upcoming SC8280 could match the Apple M1 in performance
Qualcomm's upcoming SC8280 could match the Apple M1 in performance (image via Qualcomm)
A new leak suggests that Qualcomm is planning to ditch the age-old efficiency plus performance core configuration on its upcoming Snapdragon 8cx successor codenamed the SC8280. It will instead use 'Gold' and 'Gold+' cores for better performance, at the expense of battery life.

Things are about to get exciting on the ARM laptop market. With the Apple M1 successor, tentatively known as the M1X, and Samsung's Exynos 2200 scheduled to make its debut soon, we can expect to see some serious competition in the fledgeling market. Qualcomm's Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 successor codenamed Qualcomm SC8280 will pack a punch too, according to a new leak. Qualcomm appears to be testing multiple variants of the chip too.

Winfuture.de stumbled upon some new information about one Qualcomm SC8280 variant called the Qualcomm SC8280XP. It will apparently ditch the ageing, efficiency cores for regular 'Gold' cores, which were previously earmarked as performance cores. The latter will be replaced by what Qualcomm calls 'Gold+' cores. This might not bode well for battery life, but we should hit never-before-seen levels of performance.

While the lack of efficiency cores means that battery life will suffer, we have to remember that the Qualcomm SC8280 is meant for laptops, so there is quite a lot of battery to go around. Furthermore, thermals shouldn't be a problem too as existing laptop cooling solutions are quite robust and can easily handle whatever heat the Qualcomm SC8280 throws at it.

The overall configuration will likely be the same, with the Qualcomm SC8280 consisting of four Gold and four Gold+ cores. Future iterations of the chip could even experiment with one prime Gold++ core. Winfuture states that the Gold+ cores can hit clock speeds of up to 3.0GHz under certain conditions, but they will likely be restricted to 2.7GHz.

Other Qualcomm SC8280 features include a dedicated NPU that can operate at 15 TOPS (Trillion Operations Per Second), and support for up to 32GB of RAM. Its display specs will probably cap out at 4K 60Hz, which should be more than enough for a commercial laptop. 5G support is likely too.

Enhanced CPU performance is good and all, but Qualcomm's Adreno 690 GPU is still leagues behind Apple. Samsung could be the king in this department, but its sub-par Exynos CPU cores will almost certainly hold back its overall performance. Initial tests say that Samsung's highly-anticipated AMD Radeon mobile GPU vastly outperforms the A14 Bionic. But can it hold its own against the M1X? Only time will tell.

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Source(s)

Winfuture.de (in German)

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 03 > Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 successor codenamed Qualcomm SC8280 could debut 'Gold+' cores for better single and multi-threaded performance
Anil Satyanarayana, 2021-03- 9 (Update: 2021-03- 9)