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The Samsung Exynos 2100 falls well behind the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 in early Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra CPU and GPU speed tests

Samsung continues to rely on two SoCs for its Galaxy S smartphones. (Image source: Samsung)
Samsung continues to rely on two SoCs for its Galaxy S smartphones. (Image source: Samsung)
The Samsung Galaxy S21 series will soon be in people's hands, albeit with different SoCs depending on where you live. However, it turns out that the Samsung Exynos 2100 version of the Galaxy S21 Ultra is around 10% slower than its Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 counterpart.

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Samsung was pilloried for the Exynos 990 last year, but the company promised that it had made amends with this year's Exynos 2100. In short, the Exynos 990 was simply inferior to Qualcomm's Snapdragon 865, which would not necessarily have been much of a problem if Samsung only used its in-house processors in its flagship smartphones.

However, the South Korean company stuck with Qualcomm for the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note series in the US and a few other markets, which highlighted the shortcomings of the Exynos 990 models that the company sold elsewhere. This year, the Galaxy S21 series presents a level-playing field for the Exynos 2100 and the Snapdragon 888, Qualcomm's latest flagship chipset.

Early benchmark tests produced by SpeedTest G suggest that the Exynos 2100 is a way off the pace of the Snapdragon 888, though. Admittedly, the gap between the two SoCs is closer than the one between the Exynos 990 and the Snapdragon 865 last year, but Samsung still cannot match the performance of Qualcomm.

The Exynos 2100 actually held its own in the CPU benchmark, with Samsung's chip eking a 4% lead over the Snapdragon 888. This is not surprising, as the Exynos 2100 runs at slightly higher clock speeds than the Snapdragon 888. Nonetheless, the Snapdragon 888 excelled in the GPU benchmark, finishing over 28% clear of the Exynos 2100.

So, the Adreno 660 GPU in the Snapdragon 888 seems to be significantly more powerful than the ARM Mali-G78 MP14 with its fourteen cores. The Snapdragon 888 may run hot to achieve its impressive GPU performance, though. An early benchmarking video of the Xiaomi Mi 11 and the iQOO 7 has shown that Qualcomm's latest SoC may overheat over extended periods of stress, which could hand an advantage to the Exynos 2100 during long gaming sessions. We shall find out more when more detailed comparisons between the two version of the Galaxy S21 Ultra are published.

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Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - Senior Tech Writer - 4103 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including Apple and Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.
contact me via: @aldersonaj
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 01 > The Samsung Exynos 2100 falls well behind the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 in early Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra CPU and GPU speed tests
Alex Alderson, 2021-01-22 (Update: 2021-01-22)