Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III preview: Second encounter

GSMArena team, 8 May 2012.
Pages: 1234567

Synthetic benchmarks

Benchmark Pi is a simple single-threaded benchmark, so we know what we can expect from it. The Galaxy S III falls behind the HTC One S and its brand new Krait cores, but it gets pretty much the same result as the HTC One X and its four Cortex-A9's even though those are clocked 100MHz higher than the Galaxy S's.

Benchmark Pi

Lower is better

  • HTC One S
    306
  • HTC One X
    338
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    344
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
    351
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    408
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    452
  • Sony Xperia S
    536
  • HTC Sensation XE
    583

Linpack offers multithreaded benchmarking, making it essential for testing quad-core beasts. The Samsung Galaxy S III managed to outpace all phones but the HTC One S. It even beat the One X even though it should have been a bit slower (again, 4x Cortex-A9 @ 1.4GHz for the Galaxy S III vs. 4x Cortex-A9 @ 1.5GHz for the One X).

The benchmark had some issues with Ice Cream Sandwich, so what we're seeing here might be due to Samsung's software getting along with Linpack better.

Linpack

Higher is better

  • HTC One S
    210
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    177.1
  • HTC One X
    126.1
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
    90
  • Sony Xperia S
    86.4
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    77.6
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    77.1
  • HTC Sensation XE
    50.4

Quadrant is a composite benchmark (it tests CPU, GPU and I/O). The Galaxy S III easily got the top score here, with a comfortable lead over the HTC One S and One X in terms of general performance.

Quadrant

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    5365
  • HTC One S
    5047
  • HTC One X
    4842
  • Samsung Galaxy Note
    3531
  • Sony Xperia S
    3173
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    3053
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    2316

The Samsung Galaxy S III relies on a Mali-400MP GPU, though the exact details (number of cores, clock speed, etc.) are still to be revealed. It has a 720p screen to fill with pixels (up from WVGA on the S II), so we were curious to find out how it fares.

NenaMark 2 shows much better performance compared to the NVIDIA GPU inside the Tegra 3 chipset that the HTC One X uses and it even beats the new Adreno 225 inside the One S (it's important to note that the One S has a qHD screen). The Galaxy S III shows the best 3D performance on a droid yet.

Note that older Samsung models used to have a 60fps framerate ceiling set in the software and we're not sure yet if the Galaxy S III is running into such a limit, artificially lowering its score (NenaMark reports the results in FPS).

NenaMark 2

Higher is better

  • HTC One S
    60.5
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    58.8
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    51.6
  • HTC One X
    47.5
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
    43.6
  • Sony Xperia S
    37.5
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    24
  • HTC Sensation XE
    23

GLBenchmark is available on iOS devices too, so it can give us some idea of how the Galaxy S III compares to the PowerVR SGX 543 GPUs. We're using the Egypt test in offscreen 720p mode so that results are directly comparable even though each device has a different physical screen resolution.

The Mali-400MP inside the Galaxy S III beats both the iPhone 4S and iPad 2, which use SGX 543MP2 (at different clock speeds). The SGX 543MP4 inside the new iPad comes out on top though, but it does have a huge battery to back it up and even with a new manufacturing process, it might need to have its clock speed reduced when (if?) it's put inside a mobile phone (like the GPU inside the iPhone 4S is compared to the one inside the iPad 2).

GLBenchmark Egypt (offscreen 720p)

Higher is better

  • New Apple iPad
    140
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    103
  • Apple iPad 2
    90
  • Apple iPhone 4S
    73
  • HTC One X
    63
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    62
  • HTC One S
    56

SunSpider is a JavaScript benchmark and as such isn't strongly affected by the number of CPU cores - it mostly reflects the raw performance of a single core and how optimized the JavaScript engine itself is.

Samsung seems to have done quite well here as the speed increase goes further than the 16% or so CPU frequency advantage that the Galaxy S III has over its predecessor. The S III is the fastest phone we've tested, beating other ICS phones and even the HTC One S and its Krait CPUs (which use a newer architecture than the Cortex-A9 cores in the S III).

SunSpider

Lower is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    1406
  • HTC One S
    1708
  • New Apple iPad
    1722
  • HTC One X
    1757
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    1849
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    1863
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
    1891
  • Apple iPhone 4S
    2217
  • Sony Xperia S
    2587
  • HTC Sensation XE
    4404

BrowserMark adds HTML to the equation - behind the scenes JavaScript computation won't do much if the web page can't update fast and smooth. The Galaxy S III tops this chart as well, and quite comfortably at that.

BrowserMark

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    169811
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
    113256
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    111853
  • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
    103591
  • New Apple iPad
    103264
  • HTC One S
    98435
  • HTC One X
    96803
  • Apple iPhone 4S
    88725
  • Sony Xperia S
    74990
  • HTC Sensation XE
    72498
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