The next popular Qualcomm mid-range chip is going to be the Snapdragon 778 SoC. Realme, Motorola, and Samsung are planning on using this chip inside their soon-to-launch phones. In fact, the Realme GT Master Edition’s India launch is just around the corner and so is the Moto Edge 20.
However, we did import a unit of the Realme GT Master Edition from China for one of our detailed performance tests. I shall reserve my thoughts on the phone until after the India launch, but in the meantime, let’s put the brand new Snapdragon 778 SoC through its paces. I want to quickly check how close the Snapdragon 778G can get to the Mediatek Dimensity 1200, Snapdragon 860, and Snapdragon 768G SoCs when it comes to pure grunt and sustained performance.
So, I started off the testing process by running AnTuTu on all the four phones. But, let it be known that AnTuTu also takes into account the memory and storage performance as well. So, the scores will vary across different RAM/ROM variants of the same phone and different brands too.
Anyway, there’s no doubt that the Mediatek Dimensity 1200 SoC inside the Realme X7 Max leads the pack when it comes to AnTuTu numbers. But, what took me by surprise is the fact that the AnTuTu score of the Realme GT with Snapdragon 778G SoC was very close to an 8-series chip, which is the Snapdragon 860 SoC inside the Poco X3 Pro. Looks like it is actually a much more powerful chip compared to the 768G, which scored the lowest in my AnTuTu run.
Similarly, in Geekench testing, the SD778G and the SD860 are really close in numbers. It goes without saying that the Dimensity 1200 SoC has the best single core and multi core scores here and the SD768G comes in last.
3DMark Wild Life Stress Test
While direct benchmarks are great, I am more interested in the CPU and GPU throttling. Agreed, a lot of it also has to do with how the OEM has tuned the software, but we can get an idea of whether Realme has done a good job or not with the Snapdragon 778G. In my 3DMark Wild Life Stress Test, the 765G runs the most stable but that’s also because it doesn’t have a very powerful GPU. The 768G runs pretty stable with 98.9% stability as well. But, then again, it isn’t the most powerful either. It is easier for OEMs to ensure mid-range chips don’t throttle.
You’ll notice that the Dimensity 1200 SoC inside the Realme X7 Max is the most unstable and even the Snapdragon 860 does way better. But, the Poco X3 Pro with SD860 becomes the hottest at 50 degrees. Also, I’d actually maintained the starting temperature at 30 degrees on all the three phones for parity.
Basically, the same Realme software when presented with a Mediatek chipset, struggles to tame it. But, it has no problem with the Snapdragon 778G. Looks like the Realme GT Master Edition with Snapdragon 778G is going to be a nice, sustained performance phone for gaming.
Moving on to the CPU Throttle test, the two most powerful chips in this test – the SD860 and the Dimensity 1200 – throttled the most. In fact, the SD860-toting Poco X3 Pro suffered the most where the CPU throttled to 61% of its max performance. The Dimensity 1200 achieved a score of 77%. The Snapdragon 768G and the 778G stayed fairly stable at 86% after 30 minutes of continuous testing. What’s great is the 778G managed to do this at higher clock speeds.
So, I don’t play BGMI, but I did check for the max graphics setting possible. All the four phones can do Smooth Graphics and Extreme (60fps) graphics. But the Realme X7 Max with Dimensity 1200 SoC can actually do 90fps gameplay, which is a huge advantage. The 778G and the 765G can be cranked up to a max graphics setting of HDR with the framerates dropping to Ultra or 40fps. However, on the Snapdragon 860 and the Dimensity 1200, you can actually touch 60fps Extreme gameplay at HDR graphics.
For real life testing, I played Call of Duty on all the phones for 20 minutes. Starting with the Snapdragon 860-toting Poco X3 Pro. This is the only processor among the four that can do Very High Graphics and Max framerates. But, for the sake of parity, I played on High Graphics and Max fps. After 20 minutes, the phone got really hot, touching 40 degrees, which was an increase of 10 degrees. And, it also lost 9% battery in the 20 minutes of gameplay. And, from a completely subjective gaming experience, I loved playing on the X3 Pro because it was extremely fast, responsive, and offered great touch latency as well. Not once did it stutter.
Moving on to the Dimensity 1200 on the Realme X7 Max, you can achieve Max fps only on High graphics. I feel that COD is not optimised for the Dimensity 1200 SoC yet. Anyway, the phone touched 39 degrees, which was a rise of 8 degrees from its starting temperature of 31 degree celsius. And, it lost only 5% battery life. Playing on it was fun but not as much as the Poco X3 Pro. It didn’t lag or anything but the touch response wasn’t as good.
Coming to the SD778G on the Realme GT Master Edition, you get the same Max fps and High graphics as the Dimensity 1200. What’s interesting is that it topped only 38 degrees after 20 mins of gaming, which was a 6 degree rise from the starting temperature. But, it did lose 9% battery life in the 20 minutes of gameplay. Playing on the GT Master Edition was a lot of fun. It was lag-free and responsive. Plus, the touch latency is good too. But yeah, the Poco X3 Pro would still be my favourite for the gaming experience.
Finally, the SD765G chip on the iQOO Z3 on can also do only Max fps and High graphics. The phone’s thermal performance was similar to the GT Master Edition, with the same 6 degree rise in temperature after a 20 minute session. But, it lost only 3% battery life after 20 minutes, which is the lowest of all the three phones. However, the gameplay experience wasn’t great on the Z3. It was the only phone where the oleophobic coating was so bad that I didn’t feel like playing after a couple of minutes. Add to that, I faced a slight lag as well.
Anyway, here is a full comparison chart of my gaming test.
|Starting Temperature (in Deg Celcius)||30||31||32||32|
|Ending Temperature (in Deg Celcius)||40||39||38||38|
|Temperature increase (in Deg Celcius)||10||8||6||6|
|Starting Battery Life (in %)||39||35||47||33|
|Ending Battery Life (in %)||30||30||38||30|
|Reduction in Battery Life (in %)||9||5||9||3|
The Snapdragon 778G is shaping up to be a very powerful super mid-range chip that comes very close to the performance of an 8-series chip. Only the GPU isn’t as powerful as the Snapdragon 860 SoC inside the Poco X3 Pro or the Dimensity 1200. Having said that, I could still manage to enjoy many sessions of Call of Duty without any frame drops and fairly sustained performance. When it comes to upper mid-range chips, the Snapdragon 778G is the top of the pack right now, clearly. It also supports LPDDR5 RAM compared to the max LPDDR4X RAM support on the Snapdragon 768G.
It may not be a gaming monster chip but, if used right, this balanced chip can be used to power balanced smartphone experiences with attractive displays and good cameras. And, of course, the promise of a good sustained performance from the SD778G. I am definitely curious to see how brands tailor the experience for the end user. What do you folks think of the Snapdragon 778G? Let me know in the comments section below.
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