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Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, Qualcomm’s Flagship SoC: All the things You Want To Know



On the Snapdragon Summit, Chris Patrick, SVP and GM, Cell Handset, Qualcomm, unveiled the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, Qualcomm’s flagship SoC for premium smartphones, and the successor of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1.System Efficiency: Kryo CPU ClusterLet’s begin with system efficiency, the usual sizzling subject for any new technology of processors. Qualcomm has improved all efficiency facets over final yr’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.The brand new Kryo CPU cluster is now primarily based on one ARM Cortex X3 (Prime, 3.19 GHz), 4 efficiency cores (2.8 GHz), and three effectivity cores (2.0 GHz).Final yr’s technology featured one ARM Cortex X2 (Prime, 3 GHz), three Cortex A710 (2.5 GHz), and 4 Cortex A510 (1.8 GHz), suitable with the ARMv9 Gen 1 CPU structure.The additional efficiency core and the brand new ARMv9 Gen 2 structure drive a lot of the efficiency enhance, whereas the minimal improve in CPU frequency additionally gives an additional nudge.Qualcomm estimates this new CPU cluster to be 35% sooner and as much as 40% extra power-efficient than the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, the earlier market chief for flagship Android smartphones.The 40% power-efficiency quantity is surprisingly excessive, and Qualcomm claims it’s as a result of Kryo CPU’s new microarchitecture. And not using a clearer clarification, I’ll assume it’s primarily based on the very best case research, and upcoming benchmarks would possibly shed extra mild too.The brand new Kryo CPU options an 8MB L3 cache, a 33% improve over the 6MB L3 cache within the earlier technology. Augmenting the cache dimension helps to keep away from costly DDR reminiscence entry at any time when attainable.The brand new chip provides assist for LP-DDR5x reminiscence as much as 4200 MHz and with as much as 16 GB of reminiscence density.Synthetic Intelligence (AI) Engine – Snapdragon SmartOne of the highest areas “that will likely be vital to Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is synthetic intelligence. This platform is purpose-built for AI. […] On the coronary heart of our AI expertise is the Qualcomm AI Engine [which] is fabricated from a number of applied sciences together with Adreno GPU, Kryo, Sensing Hub, Reminiscence, and Hexagon” mentioned Francisco Cheng, Senior Managing Director, Product Advertising, Qualcomm, throughout our briefing.Throughout all applied sciences concerned in processing AI fashions, the Qualcomm AI Engine eighth technology improved the efficiency by as much as 4.35X and the performance-per-watt by 60% over the seventh technology.Hexagon, AI co-processorQualcomm defines Hexagon as a “fused AI accelerator structure,” which means that the Hexagon logic block is fabricated from a number of kinds of computing items. Qualcomm made a number of enhancements all through Hexagon, and probably the most notables are the 2X dimension improve of the Tensor accelerator and the addition of a devoted energy supply system.The most important adjustments in Hexagon had been made to handle the flexibility to run extra advanced neural networks, notably round transformer networks, to ship, amongst different issues, multi-language translation in real-time.Qualcomm’s Micro Tile Inferencing is a brand new method that works by splicing neural networks into ‘tiles’ that will likely be dispatched to accessible compute items in Hexagon. Qualcomm didn’t go into a lot element, however in our expertise, tiling knowledge is often utilized to extend parallelism (course of the tiles in parallel to maximise {hardware} utilization) and probably improve cache coherency and reminiscence bandwidth. Each could make a big affect on total efficiency.Final yr, Qualcomm added the assist of blended precision INT8+INT16, (automated change between INT8 and INT16 precisions) to its non-automatic blended precision expertise, named “all precisions assist” (INT8, INT16, FP16).Within the new AI Engine, Qualcomm added the assist of 4-bit Integer precision (INT4) within the “all precisions” mode, so choose AI algorithms and neural community fashions can course of sooner throughout the Hexagon compute items. On prime of that, INT4 permits Hexagon to run extra fashions concurrently (parallel computing).Every AI mannequin might use a special degree of precision, as some AI-driven duties will ship ok outcomes utilizing an INT4 low degree of precision for sooner processing, whereas others could require larger ranges of precision reminiscent of INT8, INT16, FP16, and FP32 (Floating Level saved on 16 or 32 bits).Qualcomm mentioned that the brand new AI Engine makes use of INT4 in “cinematic mode” for real-time blurring of the background (video bokeh), with no seen distinction in picture high quality. Beforehand comparable AI fashions used INT8.4th technology Sensing Hub with a dual-AI processorThe Sensing Hub is the unbiased low-power multi-core logic unit that capabilities when the remainder of the SoC is asleep. It processes in real-time the contextual knowledge streams reminiscent of voice, audio, sensors, and connectivity.Final yr, Qualcomm launched a brand new function for the third technology Sensing Hub, the At all times-on Digicam, which has now develop into the At all times Sensing Digicam. The At all times-on Digicam allowed the cellphone to robotically lock when the person doesn’t take a look at it or get up every time the person look on the sleeping cellphone.With the brand new function, the digicam can acknowledge and course of a QR code positioned on the optical module when the smartphone is asleep (+show off), with the earlier processor, the cellphone needed to be turned on to handle a QR code.Addition of a second AI processor with 50% extra memoryQualcomm has doubled the Sensing Hub’s AI computing capability by including a second AI processor. On prime of that, 50% extra inner reminiscence is now accessible. The additional reminiscence permits the system to run new AI fashions which had been beforehand unavailable but in addition higher variations of those that existed earlier than.Qualcomm talked about 17 AI-based actions tracked by the brand new Sensing Hub, and those which caught our consideration are [human] Exercise Recognition, Voice Activation, and Eye-Monitoring.Hexagon Direct Hyperlink and Cognitive ISPQualcomm launched Hexagon Direct Hyperlink for the primary time, a function that gives devoted bodily communication channels (bi-directional buses, in {hardware} lingo) to different logic blocks such because the GPU, the reminiscence, and the Spectra ISP.Alongside Hexagon Direct Hyperlink, the chip producer introduced its first Cognitive ISP, a compute unit positioned inside Hexagon that works in reference to the Spectra ISP for sooner processing of the AI-driven imaging options.Snapdragon Sight:  upgraded digicam efficiency with Cognitive-ISPCognitive ISP for higher digicam performanceThe Cognitive ISP, positioned within the Hexagon AI co-processor, communicates in real-time with the Spectra ISP that processes the pixels captured by the digicam. The Cognitive ISP executes the A number of Semantic Segmentation AI mannequin on the pictures despatched by the Spectra ISP and tells the Spectra to use totally different image-enhancing filters on the totally different recognized zones of the picture (as much as eight segments).The Cognitive ISP can find boundaries and acknowledge objects in a picture reminiscent of faces, our bodies, pores and skin, garments, sky, vegetation, flowers, cats, seashores, buildings, and extra.This new function, named Realtime Segmentation Filter, allows the system to exactly regulate colours, contrasts, and any facets of pictures to every section of the picture, in real-time. Builders can choose totally different configurations and filters.In different phrases, the Cognitive ISP is the mind, and the Spectra ISP is the muscle.The brand new structure permits the digicam system to obtain the segmentation filter so much sooner than earlier than, and processes AI filters in real-time, even earlier than the person presses the seize button, in line with Qualcomm.Graphics and Gaming – Snapdragon Elite GamingAt the Snapdragon Summit, Chris Patrick, SVP and GM, Cell Handset, Qualcomm, mentioned that the brand new Adreno graphics processing unit (GPU) brings a 25% improve in graphics rendering efficiency than the earlier technology whereas delivering 45% higher energy effectivity.This implies the baseline efficiency will improve for practically all apps that rely on the GPU, like video games.Adreno GPU DisplayThe Adreno subvisual system additionally consists of the show, and Qualcomm introduced the assist of HDR Vivid, a brand new HDR commonplace launched in March 2021 by the China UHD Video Trade Alliance (CUVA). HDR Vivid and Adaptive HDR are the most recent additions to the opposite codecs already supported by Adreno GPU Show, together with HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Imaginative and prescient HDR.Adreno GPU for gamesAdreno GPU would be the first cellular platform to assist Unreal Engine 5’s Metahuman, a framework that permits recreation builders to create ultra-realistic people programmatically. Unreal Engine 5’s Metahuman characters had been beforehand solely usable in desktop video games. That’s a testomony to Qualcomm’s graphics software program’s maturity.The brand new-gen Adreno helps Vulkan 1.3 and delivers a 30% Vulkan efficiency enhance in comparison with the earlier technology.Actual-time hardware-accelerated ray tracingHardware ray tracing was the star function of the present, because it pushes realism in video games to the following degree. Bringing real-time ray tracing to cellular gaming is an enormous deal, as it’s compute-intensive, and solely highly effective gaming rigs can render the extra superior ray tracing strategies at excessive framerate, like international illumination for the entire 3D scene.On Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, recreation builders can combine fundamental ray tracing strategies reminiscent of tender shadows and correct reflections. The normal rendering strategies reminiscent of shadow maps yielded arduous shadows as a result of they weren’t practically as correct in comparison with ray-traced shadows. Earlier reflections rendering strategies reminiscent of screen-space reflections had been restricted and couldn’t mirror an object that was off-screen. Ray tracing can.Briefly, ray tracing mimics the sunshine’s habits in the true world by following the trail of sunshine in a 3D world from the digicam by means of the objects within the scene and to an eventual mild supply.Dave Durnil, World Head of Gaming & Snapdragon Studios, Qualcomm, confirmed us a cool demo from the favored recreation Justice On-line Cell with the ray tracing on and off. We might clearly see the distinction, with ray tracing, the reflections within the water and on the curved objects had been lifelike and we might observe the tender shadows.He informed us that Conflict Thunder Edge and Blue Reflection video games for Android will function Adreno-accelerated ray tracing.Snapdragon Sound: dynamic spatial audio with head trackingSarah McMurray, Workers Supervisor, Product Advertising, Qualcomm, launched Spatial Audio with dynamic head-tracking, a brand new function of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 that delivers extra lifelike 3D sound with low motion-to-sound latency. Spatial Audio is a expertise devoted to immersive gaming and multimedia experiences.Connectivity: 5G AI and Wi-Fi 7 support5G Modem-RF SystemThe 5G connectivity’s enhancements revolve round three new options. The primary is the mixing of a “5G AI Processor” compute unit contained in the 5G system. This primarily helps with “tuning” the 5G modem parameters to acquire optimum efficiency in any scenario. It’s the closest you may get to having a (human) modem engineer tweaking issues consistently. AI might additionally assist with sign error correction to keep away from pointless knowledge re-transmission.Subsequent, the 4X provider aggregation additional enlarges the info pipeline accessible for 5G communications, leading to larger peak downloads (a formidable 10 Gbps).Lastly, it’s attainable to make use of two 5G SIM on the identical time, due to the 5G Twin SIM Twin Energetic function. It opens the door to much more knowledge parallelism, however you would possibly find yourself paying two subscriptions in fact.FastConnect Wi-Fi 7 and Bluetooth connectivity systemSnapdragon 8 Gen 2 comes with Wi-Fi 7, the upcoming commonplace for dwelling connectivity. Qualcomm makes use of extraordinarily superior strategies reminiscent of high-band multi-link to make use of as a lot of the accessible spectrum as attainable.The corporate says its Wi-Fi can attain 5.8 Gbps and, extra importantly, maintain a latency beneath two milliseconds in a sustained method. Low latency might persuade wired ethernet customers to lastly change to Wi-Fi.

Filed in Cellphones >Occasions. Learn extra about Editorspick, Processors, Qualcomm, Snapdragon, Snapdragon Summit and SoC.

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