Over the months, on this page we have taken it upon ourselves to show all our followers the great comparisons between the best processors that each of our favorite companies has presented to users of smart devices, and today we came to Show you a new battle between MediaTek and Qualcomm, and that is the comparison between the Dimensity 820 vs Snapdragon 855. Today we are going to compare all its features, and see how much technology has changed in almost two years!
About release dates, it is obvious that the Dimensity 820 has a great advantage. This processor was shown to the world a very short time ago, on May 18 of this year, thus surprising users. Having said that, Snapdragon 855 was released in late 2018 (December 5) and the first smartphone to feature it arrived in early 2019. Since the concept of 5G was new at that time, it first was the first Qualcomm 5G SoC with the integrated modem.
First off let us start with the process technology which determines the power consumption and performance of the SoC. Keep in mind the lower the number the better is the performance as well as battery life efficiency. Well, we can clearly see that the Dimensity 820 owns the first place in this category due to its 7nm LPP N7P process by TSM, while the Snapdragon 855 also uses the same TSMC’s 7nm LPP process based on the N7 node.
As we can see here that the process is the same in both SoCs, so now the cores and frequency will solely depend on the performance difference and power efficiency. So, let us consider the process section a tie.
It is time to start this great comparison of processors, and we will start talking about the CPUs that are inside. Starting with the Dimensity 820, this process uses an octa-core CPU based on the similar dual-cluster design (4+4). It consists of 4 x high-performance core which is the Cortex A76 running at a speed of 2.6GHz and 4 x energy-efficient Cortex A55 cores running at a speed of 2.0GHz. In comparison to the Dimensity 800 we can see how the upper cores frequency has increased up to 200MHz. It is almost 37% better than the 800.
That being said, the Snapdragon 855 uses a Kryo 485 CPU based on a semi-custom ARM Cortex technology. It’s a tri-cluster (1+3+4) design consisting of Cortex A76 core running at a speed of 2.84GHz, three Cortex A76 cores running at a speed of 2.42GHz and four Cortex A55 cores running at a speed of 1.8GHz. This can achieve up to 45% improvement in performance compared to the flagship platform of the previous generation.
By looking at the amount and speed at which the eight cores inside each of these two processors are running, it can be seen that the eight cores present in the Dimensity 820 give it greater overall power, for which give it the first place in this category.
Turning to talk about the GPUs that are inside these two powerful processors, in terms of GPU performance, the Dimensity 820 has ARM Mali-G57 running at a speed of 650MHz as the GPU. Instead of the regular 4 cores in Dimensity 800, this one has on addition core, bring the number to 5 cores. It is optimized by MediaTek HyperEngine 2.0.
On the other hand, the Qualcomm Adreno 640 GPU present in the Snapdragon 855 offers graphics processing speeds up to 20% faster compared to previous generations while maintaining industry-leading performance. It runs at a speed of 585MHz clock speed.
Comparing these two processors, it can be clearly seen that the present in the MediaTek processor gives it a greater operating power, and all thanks to the speed at which its GPU runs.
Moving to the scores of the AnTuTu Benchmark v8, official claims that the overall performance of the MediaTek Dimensity 820 scores around 415,277 points. That being said, the Snapdragon 855 scored a total of 369,677 points.
Also Read: MediaTek Dimensity 800 vs Snapdragon 845 – 2020 vs 2017!
Now, talking about AI, and similar to the other Dimensity SoCs, the 820 features the MediaTek APU 3.0. It brings AI features like AI-Recognition (for example, objects, scenes, or people), AI-Super Resolution, and AI-deblur functions. The rumored score on AI-benchmark is 40,315 points the same as the Dimensity 1000L processor which also has the same APU.
With that said, the Snapdragon 855 presented by Qualcomm has Hexagon 698, the chip in charge of processing all AI code and machine learning with support for Tensor, Vector eXtensions, and Scalar, and other virtues such as executing AI code in energy-saving mode or support for multiple voice assistants. That being said, Qualcomm isn’t that good when it comes to AI performance, so it’s not a surprise that in the AI-benchmark this processor got a score of only 24,421 points getting beaten by the above said SoCs and even the mid-end Kirin 810.
Moving to the ISP, Dimensity 820 features ImagiQ 5.0 ISP. The single-camera support is 80 megapixels and the dual camera support is up to 32 megapixels +16 megapixels (30fps). In terms of video recording, it can capture a 4K HDR video. With that said, with the Snapdragon 855 in hand, we could have a maximum of 192 megapixels on a single sensor. Processing this data implied losing algorithms such as noise reduction or zero shutter lag, but they were supported. A year later the figure increases to 200 megapixels, but the big jump occurs in the numbers with filters applied.
Just as you can see, the Snapdragon processor is capable of allowing cameras that reach up to 192 megapixel quality compared to 32 megapixels + 16 megapixels of the Dimensity processor, however, the latter is capable of recording videos in 4K quality, which the SD 855 cannot do. Because of this, and because they both work so well and complement each other, we will consider this a tie.
As for connectivity, The Dimensity 820 does support 5G networking and features global sub-6GHz 5G networks and promises up to 3.5Gbps download speeds and up to 1.25Gbps upload speed. It also supports dual SIM 5G. Mediatek 5G UltraSave technology achieves excellent power efficiency. Sadly, there is no support for mmWave 5G.
Having said that, the Snapdragon 855 has an integrated X24 LTE modem for 4G only. 5G is only possible if the manufacturer decides to use the external X50 modem which gives a download rate of 5 Gbit/s and indeed consumes more power and occupies more space. Another minor aspect is that the SD 855 supports Bluetooth 5.1.
Regarding their price, it looks like we won’t see SD 855 in 2020, maybe one or two flagships with SD 855+ and thus, the price of SD 855 will start to fall. The phone incorporating the SD 855 might range from around 300 to 400 USD in 2020. On the other hand, and since MTK isn’t limited to any phones, we might see a large price range of phones featuring Dimensity 820. Recently, the Redmi 10X is expected to release soon featuring this SoC, for a price of 212 USD, so, yes, this SoC is bringing 5G in the mid-end budget-friendly category and the winner in this category.
Concluding this Dimensity 820 vs Snapdragon 855 comparison, we must say that it depends on the user to select the processor that best suits its needs. That being said, and guiding us through the categories that were presented in this article, it can be seen that, and although the Snapdragon 855 has great features and is capable of providing good specifications, the Dimensity 820 processor works in a better way, so, between these two processors, the MediaTek Dimensity 820 takes the winner trophy.