If you follow the mobile industry closely, you will be pretty much aware of the fact that whatever GPU Apple uses in its iOS devices is usually the fastest, which is then followed by Samsung’s Exynos/ARM GPU. While Qualcomm GPU’s never really were top-performers, the release of Adreno 320 GPU with the S4 Pro SoC changed all that. The Adreno 320 gives tough competiton to the ARM GPU in Samsung’s Exynos SoC and even manages to beat Apple’s A6 SoC in some benchmarks.
Yesterday, when Nvidia unveiled the “world’s fastest mobile” SoC, Tegra 4, with quad-core Cortex-A15 CPU and 72 GPU cores, it boasted of the fact that its mobile SoC is faster than even Apple’s A6X SoC found inside the iPad 4. Given Nvidia’s past, I was skeptical about their marketing and I might just be right.
Thanks to some terrific investigation by an XDA member, Turbotab, we may have got our first look on how the Tegra 4 performs in real-world benchmarks or at least GLBenchmark. In an offscreen Egypt HD benchmark at 1080p resolution, Nvidia’s Tegra 4 based developer board managed around 32.6FPS, while the iPad 4 managed a whopping 49.6FPS.
Now, even if we consider that development boards are around 10-20% slower than the ‘retail’ units, the Tegra 4 will still end up playing catch up with the A6X inside the iPad 4.
It was earlier rumored that Nvidia will unveil the Tegra 4 with its new unified Kepler based GPU core, which is similar to its desktop GPUs. However, AnandTech has confirmed that Nvidia has not used Kepler GPU inside the Tegra 4.
Head over to this XDA thread to read about the stunning investigative work done by Turbotab.
P.S. – All the above information may just turn out to be complete BS, but taking into consideration Nvidia’s past, I am highly doubtful about that. In Nvidia’s slides, the company presumably compared the quad-core Cortex-A15 CPU of Tegra 4 to Apple’s custom Swift cores, and may have intentionally left out the GPU part.