First of all let's establish something:
Declaring that a SoC "overheats" makes no sense today.
For several years, every single high-end/midrange SoC "overheats" during sustained usage and the only reason why the devices we use daily hopefully are not self-destructing and burning our hands is because of thermal management throttling the frequencies and voltages based on the actual temperature measured on the CPU, GPU, board and battery.
This is the role of power management and thermal management.
Now when the 810 overheating story came out initially, it was from Korean sources and linked to Samsung.
The first thing I thought then is that it was rather obviously a communication strategy to promote Samsung's 14nm incoming competing product.
Then after watching +Michael Fisher's videos about LG's G Flex 2: https://youtu.be/dkwsPf6KvR0, performance or optimization issues appeared more credible.
Then after playing with each Snapdragon 810 devices during #MWC15 , I mostly changed my mind on the subject:
– The demonstrated G Flex 2 performance was stunningly poor both on performance and UI smoothness
– The demonstrated Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet was even worse, being simply unable to run Android 5.0 system UI and launcher without massive dropped frames.
– The demonstrated HTC One M9 appearing not as fast nor as smooth as its M8 predecessor: dropping some frames when scrolling in Settings app, an UX regression impression increased by a higher touch latency.
So while I never bought the overheating rumor itself, since #MWC15 I concluded that it was likely that the Snapdragon 810 platform, both hardware and software at that time was suffering either from:
1/ noticeably poor performance tuning / frequency governor / power management optimization.
2/ a definite design issue, 4 A57 cores + 4 A53 + Adreon 430 GPU package on the same 20nm process leading to a power efficiency that's not good enough for satisfying performances in a smartphone.
1/ appearing a lot more likely than 2/
So while I still think that the overheating rumor was originated from an intent to promote as superior Samsung 14nm SoC, I also concede that Qualcomm made some damage by not communicating transparently enough on the fact their 810 platform power management and performance optimization was, or is still very much a work in progress.
Showcasing the LG G Flex 2 as proof the 810 had no issue was not the best choice.
We shall learn more about the Snapdragon 810 real world experience with the incoming HTC One M9 review, very soon.
The M9 review units have received a system update just a few days ago and hopefully it contains the latest and greatest Qualcomm tuning.
via +Stig-Ørjan Smelror via +Carlos-Cristian Radan
What is behind the fake Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 overheating rumors? – SemiAccurate
SemiAccurate has been following a massive FUD campaign for a few months and the rabbit hole has lead to some interesting places.
13 thoughts on “+Charlie Demerjian, whom I had the chance to meet during #MWC15 at #Saygus booth while measuring the V² display wrote an article based on an investigation of what has been referred as the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 overheating rumor”
Glad to hear it was only a rushed SOC that caught on to the press.
You probably know more about it than I, but to me it seems to be more of #2 than #1. The issues can, of course, be mitigated by #1, but I think the underlying issue is the package itself.
Qualcomm just seems to have rushed it out so they could satisfy their OEM orders. Companies like LG and HTC are forced(somewhat) to use whatever Qualcomm gives them but Samsung was more than willing to ditch it for the 14nm.
I don't really believe the whole thing started as a way for Samsung to promote their 14nm chips. To me, this seems to be how the press spun it. Samsung had an issue with the chip and there were even attempts from Qualcomm(allegedly) to create custom ones for them.
If true, that didn't seem to follow through and that seems to be mainly because Samsung was happy to use their own chips. I want to say that Samsung will be saving around 20 dollars. So not only do they save money, but they also get the superior chip
I just read a report about heat generation being lower on the 815, but I'm looking forward to the 820. I just don't think it will make it into phones until the first batch of 2016 devices come out. But we're way too far away to know for sure
I say it can't just be thermals.
Reason being that even if took a 810 and disabled all a57 cores and half the a53 cores along with a clock reduction on the GPU. You still wouldn't expect the performance issues seen on the g flex 2.
It doesn't take that much grunt to get a decent experience going around the UI and basic apps with a 1080p display.
I suspect it's more of BSP issue, what ever Qualcomm is doing with the governor / task scheduler. Their own core interconnect system.. Or any combination of the above.
It is just far easier for the regular tech press to say it's thermals. Most don't have a clue about any other part of the equation.
+Nate Dwgs thanks, the only G Flex 2 I played with us were running a custom MWC firmware (that was preventing proper function of Wi-Fi so I couldn't use my display measurements rig) who knows what else was suboptimal.
They might not have been fully representative of the commercially available products
+Nate Dwgs yes I was looking for measuring this one as it's an AMOLED and it has 3 color modes.
So I don't know yet how to access one but I'll try to.
+François Simond I never bought much into the 810 rumor until mwc as well. Too many people coming back and saying the hitches in the ui was annoying. A friend of mine works for aprint and has the retail version of the g flex 2 and he has issues with the ui as well.
+François Simond Also good to know someone else who is a subscriber to semiaccurate. One of my favorite sites.
There is no spoon.
Fingers crossed here. I'm hoping for the Z4 Tablet to be a Nexus 10 successor, so if it is crippled on arrival by a poor SoC, I shall be sad.
+Wilhelm Fitzpatrick on MWC devices, the Z4 Tablet was also extremely blueish.
+François Simond oh no, I was seriously considering that!
+Aaron Huffman Z4 tablet white point and color rendering has a similar look to the Xperia Z3 phone.
You can adjust the white point by diminishing the intensity of blue and green channels to satisfying levels, at the expense of the contrast ratio.
Sony was refusing to activate Wi-fi on their demo devices or do anything meaningful so I was not able to measure the Z4 tablet display.
You can look at the commit volume on code Aurora their has Been a lot of work done recently and considering the G flex is shipping it is at least a month behind . The 810 is just approaching a stable status now.