Xiaomi 12 Performance Evolution: CPU, GPU, ISP, AI, and Connectivity

Xiaomi 12 Performance Evolution

Xiaomi 12 Performance Evolution

Xiaomi 12 Series has been confirmed to be released on December 28, offering Xiaomi 12, Xiaomi 12 Pro a small and large two sizes. Both models will be equipped with Snapdragon 8 Gen1 processor.

The Snapdragon 8 Gen1 processor has only theoretical scores, and the actual performance of the terminal is unknown. How much CPU and GPU performance is improved? How much improvement in CPU and GPU performance? How does power consumption perform? Architecture, connectivity, imaging, AI engine, gaming, What kind of upgrades are there? So, today, Xiaomi officially announced for the first time the actual test of Xiaomi 12 performance.

In the past decade, bringing the latest and coolest technology to users has been the mission of Xiaomi’s flagship deeply embedded in its DNA. This of course includes bringing the latest, fastest, and most powerful platform to users every year. Strong performance has also been a label on Xiaomi.

Xiaomi 12 series, as the third generation of high-end flagship products of Xiaomi, is equipped with the latest and most powerful processor of the Android platform – the new Snapdragon 8 Gen1 mobile platform.

Compared with the previous generation Snapdragon 888, the new Snapdragon 8 Gen1 has changed a lot, not only using the world’s leading 4nm process but also carrying the new Armv9 instruction set that defines the new decade for the first time, upgrading the CPU architecture of all three clusters, while the new generation Adreno GPU performance soars.

In addition to the new generation AI engine and Qualcomm’s first 18bit imaging system designed for cell phones, fast and powerful performance, and intelligent and powerful AI capabilities, all concentrated in a fingernail-sized chip. The Xiaomi 12 series defines a new generation of performance benchmarks.

CPU architecture innovation, the new Armv9 instruction set defines the next decade

The Snapdragon 8 Gen1 adopts the advanced Samsung 4nm process, and the advanced process level brings the transistor count to a high level again. At the same time, 8 Gen1 has a completely updated CPU triple-cluster architecture, with a 20% increase in CPU performance and a 30% reduction in power consumption.

The most important fundamental change to the CPU is the adoption of the new Armv9 instruction set, the first major update to Arm’s instruction set since the release of Armv8 in 2011, which has enabled the entire mobile ecosystem to rapidly move to 64-bit and has been instrumental in the past decade. Armv9 defines the direction of the new decade by providing a new SVE2 instruction set extension, which allows many of the advanced algorithms written for large servers and even supercomputers to run on mobile platforms like cell phones.

The architectural upgrade based on the new instruction set gives all the cores of the Snapdragon 8 Gen1 a new look. Xiaomi Labs used SPECint2006 for real-world testing, and the Cortex X1 Super Large Core was upgraded to Cortex X2, with a 16% increase in peak performance. The increase in performance of the Super Large Core allows the Xiaomi 12 series to be much faster in application startup, as well as high load large games and other scenarios requiring high performance.

The X2 super core not only has higher peak performance but also has an optimized power consumption ratio, which is better than the X1 super core on Snapdragon 888 under medium to high load.

The A78 core on the Snapdragon 888 has been upgraded to the A710 core with an 11% increase in performance and an improved power consumption ratio, making it a better overall performer than last year’s A78 core and a mainstay for high load scenarios such as 3D games.

The most surprising part is the upgrade of the small cores. The new Snapdragon 8 Gen1 upgrades the A55 cores that have been used for several years to the new A510 cores, with a 34% performance increase.

The performance of the small cores has soared, making the 8 Gen1 small core performance is close to the A73 core of the Xiaomi 6, the new generation of Xiaomi 12 series, which may be the best time for Xiaomi 6 users to switch.

The GPU performance soared 52%, Qualcomm’s strongest game artifact to date

In the face of more and more large 3D games, the Snapdragon 8 Gen1 is also well prepared. The new Adreno GPU performance increase can be described as violent. Qualcomm has always been a strong performer in GPUs for mobile platforms, but this time it’s still a leap forward in performance.

The GPU on 8 Gen1 has been renamed “New Generation Adreno GPU” instead of the traditional three-digit naming convention, and like the CPU, the entire architecture of the GPU has been upgraded.

In terms of performance, Snapdragon 8 Gen1 GPU is 30% faster than the previous generation Snapdragon 888 Adreno660 in terms of graphics rendering speed, 25% lower power consumption for the same performance, and up to 60% higher Vulkan rendering performance. Combined with enhanced VRS and Snapdragon Elite Gaming technology, the next-generation Adreno GPU has locked in the throne as the most powerful gaming performance in Android chip history.

According to Xiaomi Labs’ latest performance tests, GFXbench’s Manhattan 3.0 off-screen scenario, Aztec Ruins scenario, and 3DMark’s Wild Life scenario, the Xiaomi 12 series is significantly ahead of the previous-generation Snapdragon 888 models in several scenarios, with Manhattan 3.0 improving by up to 52%.

The Snapdragon 8 Gen1 GPU also has a better power consumption ratio, with a significantly lower power consumption than the Snapdragon 888 in the same performance, making it more comfortable in light-load games.

The new generation Adreno GPU also provides more advanced graphics features for the Xiaomi 12 series. The Variable Rate Shading (VRS) feature supported on Snapdragon 888 models has been upgraded to VSR Pro on Snapdragon 8 Gen1. The new VRS Pro feature refines the scheduling of graphics resources and enables finer-grained VRS rendering of specific locations on the screen based on the actual scene, further reducing the impact on the screen while improving performance.

Snapdragon 8 Gen1 also introduces Adreno motion engine technology, which can calculate the frame complement of past frames, allowing for smoother motion graphics in games while maintaining a lower power performance. The new Snapdragon Elite Gaming technology adds stereoscopic rendering technology to make special effects such as volume clouds and smoke more realistic, making Xiaomi 12 series users more immersive when playing games.

Seventh generation AI engine with 4X performance boost

Snapdragon 8 Gen1 integrates Qualcomm’s latest 7th generation AI engine technology, which doubles the performance and memory of the new Hexagon processor. In addition, software performance has been doubled for Snapdragon 888 models. This gives Snapdragon 8 Gen1 up to 4x better AI engine performance than before.

In Inceptionv3, Mobilent_v2, Resnet50, and VDSR tests, Snapdragon 8 Gen1 achieved more than double and up to four times the performance.

Qualcomm has also added a new AI low-power subsystem to the sensor hub module of the new Snapdragon 8, including AI processors, DSPs, memory, and other modules to enable low-power processing of voice, sensor connectivity, and other scenarios.

Snapdragon 8 Gen1 also includes a new always-on low-power ISP that connects to the external camera, allowing the camera to be always on. Combined with the front-facing camera, it brings more privacy and security features to the user, such as hiding sensitive information immediately if someone is peeking next to you when a new message notification comes. Overall, the sensor hub module delivers a 75 percent performance improvement while reducing power consumption by 50 percent.

Qualcomm’s first 18-bit imaging system for cell phones, with 4096 times more sampling power

The Snapdragon 8 Gen1 is also a huge improvement in imaging capabilities. The new Spectra ISP is a three-way ISP design capable of processing up to 18bit of data, an increase of up to 4096x over the previous generation’s 14bit. It is also Qualcomm’s first 18-bit imaging system designed for cell phones.

The 18-bit data sampling gives a higher dynamic range performance, allowing users to see more detail in the darker areas than with 14-bit data while preserving highlight detail. The 18-bit processing pipeline also allows for better 10-bit performance by controlling the exposure of dark and light areas separately at 10-bit, resulting in a more beautiful and outstanding photo.

The three-way ISP also offers a significant increase in throughput, capable of processing 32 trillion pixels per second, a significant jump over the previous generation. Snapdragon 8 Gen1 is now capable of processing 100 million pixels at 30 frames per second with a single camera, and 36 million pixels at 30 frames per second with all three cameras on.

To improve performance in low-light conditions, the ISP system also supports the Mega Multi-Frame Engine, which can capture up to 30 frames and sample them for stacking, resulting in brighter, clearer photos. For comparison, the previous generation Snapdragon 888 only supported 6 frames, a 5x improvement.

The new generation of Spectra ISP also incorporates more AI capabilities this time, with AI face recognition capability upgraded from 115 points in Snapdragon 888 to 300 points, and recognition speed reduced from 24ms to 6ms, an improvement of up to 300%.

For video, the new generation of Spectra ISP can support up to 8K HDR standard shooting, while the ISP power consumption is significantly reduced by 50% when shooting HDR scenes, and the large bandwidth supports recording 8K video while shooting up to 64-megapixel photos.

The powerful ISP performance and features of Snapdragon 8 Gen1 provide the stage for flagship phones to shine, and the new Xiaomi 12 series will bring an unprecedented evolution in imaging.

Snapdragon X65, the fourth-generation 5G modem, reaches 10 Gigabit speeds for the first time.

The Snapdragon 8 Gen1, the world’s leading 5G platform solution, is equipped with the fourth-generation 5G modem X65, which for the first time increases downlink speeds to 10Gbps or 10 Gigabit speeds as we commonly understand them. The X65 also supports up to 3.5Gbps on the uplink side.

In addition, Snapdragon X65 is the first modem and RF system to be compliant with the 3GPP Release 16 specification. It also has a scalable architecture that can be customized and expanded for each market segment worldwide.

Qualcomm’s leadership in communications also helps the new generation of Xiaomi 12 series to set new highs in multi-dimensional speed, with faster and more stable overall performance.


The Snapdragon 8 Gen1 is not just a new naming scheme, but a revolution inside and out, with leaps and bounds in CPU and GPU, ISP, AI, and connectivity. Such an all-around and powerful platform will become the heart of the Xiaomi 12 series power surge.

With the powerful performance of the platform as the foundation, coupled with Xiaomi’s meticulous and professional tuning strategy, Xiaomi 12 series will not only be faster this time but also achieve consistent and stable performance output to achieve “fast and stable” performance. As for the performance, Xiaomi will have more surprises to share with you at the launch event, so stay tuned.


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