Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Bay Trail - Intel Is Competitive With ARM At Last

You can see new benchmarks here: Arm vs Intel Benchmarks

Basically, performance-wise, the Bay Trail z3770 chip is on a par with Nvidia's Tegra 4 and Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 chips.

Earlier reports of low benchmarks and TDP/part numbers for Bay Trail, appear to have been fakes.

Intel is not releasing "TDP" numbers, but that may just be because Bay Trail's power management is very unusual. I think it is likely that for brief instances a Bay Trail chip can be outside the normal tablet envelope, but quickly returns to an acceptable level, making it fully usable in a tablet. Practical TDP estimates by several benchmarkers at Intel's IDF say it's something like 3 watts, which (assuming that's true in real-life conditions) is amazing.

I do have one concern though. Intel's burst mode might possibly have adverse effects on game playing. Essentially, the chip alters its speed dynamically for both CPU and GPU... that may be upsetting when playing an action game that requires appropriately timed gestures.


  1. asus transformer 10" tegra4 =13h @31wh battery
    asus transformer 10" z3740 =11h @31wh battery

    hmmmmmmm ;)

    and that one should be considerably slower than t4

    - Lgk

  2. Interesting about the battery... but then it's running full Windows 8, not really designed for mobile w.r.t. background tasks, etc.

    Microsoft is in a tough spot w.r.t. Windows... full Windows is a drag in tablet space. Windows RT isn't particularly interesting there [and even then is still too fat]. Intel seems to have realized this... thus the heavy emphasis on Android and Chrome OS.

    I agree, it's not going to be in the same speed class as the t4.
    Around the speed of the MediaTek 8135 I would guess. And I would suspect the 8135 would have better power characteristics as it is big.LITTLE.

    While I believe Intel has broken through the power issue at last, I'm not sure this year will see huge gains under Android (especially as the software side seems so far behind).

  3. Tegra 4 is a 7W Soc (so said Nvidia), so once the user does something more than web surfing, the battery live could go down like a disaster.
    I think that Tegra 4 is not a good solution at least in 28nm, A15 is too much power hungry.
    IMO Baytrail and Snap 800 are the best in this moment. The first one with a better battery life and a strong cpu power, the second one with the better GPU performance and the very good integrated LTE.
    The customer can chose, it seems.

    Anyway kudos to Intel, it's not easy to be competitive with the best Qualcomm can give.

    1. when they said? i can find no mention on the net. and im yet to see any benchmark or any heavy use scenario for the shield making it (the whole system, not just the soc) consume more than 5W or so


    2. On an article disappeared from the web....i can't find it now. Anyway thanks to Anand it's well known the real power consumption of 32nm dualcore A15 (2W/core at 1.7Ghz), so assuming a 15-20% power reduction and doubling the number of cores.... the calculation is very easy.
      My estimation on 28nm is 1.8-1.9W/core at 1.9Ghz versus 1.3-1.4w/core at 2.3Ghz of krait 400 (from offical slide).
      Obviously with the core under stress and without power constrains. Your Shield draws that wattage because has a severe cut down of cpu clock under stress to stay in the allowed power budget. In fact Shield disappoints a lot in the recent comparison with bay trail.

    3. it doesnt matter if and how much shields clock was limited, it still managed to get the scores comparable to the baytrails, staying all the time under 5w. and wont trusting anands results for a15, not just coz the whole thing was set up by some intel engineer, but he chose nexus10 as well, and its a very odd device when it comes down to power consumption, lasting very little time on some loads, and yet so much more on the others

      - Lgk

    4. Still BayTrail is of another class versus Tegra 4. So there isn't a direct competition, because Tegra can not stay in tiny tablets like Bay or Snap 600.
      At the end of the day, all this discussion about performance is useless, only power consumption matters today and every device capable of a decent performance and very low power can have a great success in the right desing win.
      THis is the reason i think that in one or two years Mediatek and other companies will become relevant in handset. IMO actual qualcomm domination in handset will end in few years.

  4. tiny tablets))) t4 is even going into smartphones; bt isnt (and no, i dont mean tegra4i, check xiaomi mi-3 variants). merrifield is intels planned *dual-core* smartphone soc. not that im arguing whats more appropriate, but still... :)

    - Lgk

    1. Come on, these Snap 800 and Tegra 4 implementations are more like experiments with huge +3Ah batteries and low effective Cpu and Gpu clock speeds. Best selling phones are Snap 600 based (low clock) or dualcore based. I think that a fast dualcore is enough in phones, in fact Apple agreed with me ....and Intel too :-)


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