While the Snapdragon 855 might be attracting all the attention right now as the new flagship-level 5G-capable chip for mobile devices in 2019, Qualcomm still didn’t forget about PC segment; specifically in the Always Connected PC space. Built upon the foundation of Snapdragon 835 and Snapdragon 850, here comes the new Snapdragon 8cx chip which is the company’s first 7nm chip for the segment.
Revealed earlier today on Day 3 of Snapdragon Tech Summit here in Hawaii, Qualcomm stated that the Snapdragon 8cx will co-exist with Snapdragon 850 which was announced earlier this year at Computex 2018. In terms of market positioning, the Snapdragon 8cx is positioned on a higher tier than the Snapdragon 850 which not surprising given the performance leap that the new chip has over its predecessor.
For starters, Qualcomm started that the Kryo 495 CPU on Snapdragon 8cx is said to be the fastest ever in Snapdragon family although the company somehow didn’t reveal the actual clock speed of the chip. Built with four efficiency cores and four performance cores, the CPU comes with larger system cache and L3 cache with a total of 10MB cache made available for the chip to utilize.
The Snapdragon 8cx also features the new Adreno 680 GPU which is apparently 3.5x faster than the Adreno 540 GPU on Snapdragon 835 and 2x more performance than Snapdragon 850’s Adreno 630 GPU. Despite that performance leap, Snapdragon 8cx’s GPU is apparently 60% more power efficient than its predecessor.
With the ability to support up to two external 4K HDR display, the Snapdragon 8cx also features improved memory and storage support including 8 channel LPDDR4x memory, NVMe solid state drive, and UFS3.0 storage. Of course, multi-day battery life remains one of the main pitches for the new chip alongside up to 25+ hours of continues usages.
While Snapdragon 855 might be touted as the new flagship mobile chip for the 5G age, the Snapdragon 8cx still rooted within the LTE world. That being said, the integrated Snapdragon X24 LTE modem provides the chip with the capability to deliver download and upload speed of up to 2Gbps and 316Mbps respectively which are already blazing fast.
Aside from the X24 LTE modem, another part of the Snapdragon 8cx that Qualcomm has adopted from its array of mobile technologies is the Spectra 390 Image Signal Processor (ISP) which allows the new chip to support HEVC, VP9, and H.264 codecs as well as 4K30fps HDR video capture and 4K120fps HDR decoding. At the same time, the ISP also provides the support for a single HFR 16MP camera, dual 16MP camera, and a single 32MP camera.
In terms of Digital Signal Processor, Qualcomm has retained the Hexagon 685 from Snapdragon 850 for the new chip. Similarly, the Snapdragon 8cx also supports Qualcomm Quick Charge 4+ fast charge technology and just like Snapdragon 855, it has also been infused with the 4th Gen Qualcomm AI Engine.
As exciting as the Snapdragon 8cx might be, it is going to take a while before we able to see any end-user product powered by the new chip though since Qualcomm stated such products are expected to be available only in Q3 2019. Nevertheless, we will not be surprised if some manufacturers decided to tease or showcase their Snapdragon 8cx products at the upcoming CES 2019.