Qualcomm Announces Snapdragon 865 and 765

Qualcomm has announced its next flagship smartphone processor, the Snapdragon 865, at its annual Tech Summit in Hawaii. Along with a handful of other announcements, its newest flagship processor has finally been named, and the Snapdragon 865 is set to power flagship smartphones in 2020 and beyond.

The 7nm TSMC-fabricated Snapdragon 865 sports eight 64-bit Kryo 585 CPU cores derived from Arm’s designs and clocked at up to 2.84GHz: that’s one Arm Cortex-A77 at 2.84GHz with 512KB of L2 cache, three A77s at 2.42GHz with 256KB of L2, and four Cortex-A55s at 1.8GHz and 128KB of L2, with 4MB of L3 shared cache.

The RAM controller can use 2750MHz LPDDR5 or 2133MHz LPDDR4X memory. The CPU cores are essentially stock cores from Arm; Qualcomm decided to spend its engineering time on all the other parts of the system-on-chip, such as machine-learning acceleration and camera data processing, to differentiate its product from rival parts.

The package also includes an Adreno 650 GPU, and a Hexagon 698 math accelerator that can be used for speeding up AI tasks. Overall, the components form what’s called the Qualcomm fifth-generation AI engine. Qualcomm is also shooting for a “desktop level” gaming experience with this platform stack by including various performance features; your mileage may vary.

GPU drivers will also be downloadable from the Android Play Store, allowing folks to easily install updates and enhancements. As a flagship product, the 865 is aimed at high-end phones and similar devices.

Qualcomm says the 865, which includes a Spectra 480 image signal processor, can handle two gigapixels a second when taking photos and video, or four pixels per clock cycle. That translates into 4K HDR and 8K video recording, photographs up to 200 megapixels in size or 64MP during video recording, and HD slow-motion video at 960 frames per second, and more.

Phones using the SD865 with 200MP camera sensors are due to go on sale in 2020. There’s also hardware acceleration for computer-vision apps that use the camera, and it supports Dolby Vision capture.

Qualcomm has updated its Neural Processing SDK, Hexagon NN Direct, and AI Model Enhancer tools to help programmers tap into the Snapdragon’s hardware acceleration, and added mixed precision instructions to its GPU for machine learning. The SD865 will also be the first, according to Qualcomm, system-on-chip to support dual SIM dual standby.

There’s also support for Bluetooth 5.1, Wi-Fi including 60GHz Wi-Fi that tops out at 10Gbps, up to 16GB of RAM, USB 3.1, a 4K touchscreen display at 60Hz or QHD+ at 144Hz, up to 4K of external display at 60Hz, hardware acceleration for voice-controlled digital assistants

The Snapdragon 865 is the next generation of flagship processor (system-on-a-chip) from Qualcomm, and will likely appear in dozens of smartphones when it launches next year. It features numerous upgrades from the Snapdragon 855, most notably, all versions of the 865 will come with support for 5G.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 specs

Snapdragon 865 Snapdragon 855 Snapdragon 845
CPU Config 1x 2.84GHz (Cortex A77)
3x 2.4GHz (Cortex A77)
4x 1.8GHz (Cortex-A55)
1x 2.84GHz (Cortex A76)
3x 2.42GHz (Cortex A76)
4x 1.8GHz (Cortex-A55)
4x 2.8GHz (Cortex-A75)
4x 1.7GHz (Cortex-A55)
GPU Adreno 650 Adreno 640 Adreno 630
DSP Hexagon 698 Hexagon 690 Hexagon 685 with HVX
Process 7nm FinFET 7nm FinFET 10nm LPP FinFET
Camera support 200MP single / 64MP single with Zero Shutter Lag
24MP dual camera
Hybrid AF, HDR video. multi-frame noise reduction
48MP single / 24MP dual
Hybrid AF, HDR video. multi-frame noise reduction
32MP single / 16MP dual
Hybrid AF, HDR video. multi-frame noise reduction
Video capture 8K @ 30fps, 4K UHD @ 120fps, 720p @ 960fps 4K UHD, HDR @ 60fps 4K UHD @ 60fps
Video playback 8K, 360 degree, 4K up to 120fps, 10-bit, H.265 and VP9 video decoder 8K, 360 degree, 4K up to 120fps, 10-bit, H.265 and VP9 video decoder 4K UHD @ 60fps, 10-bit H.264 (AVC) and H.265 (HEVC)
Charging Quick Charge 4+
Quick Charge AI
Quick Charge 4+ Quick Charge 4+
Modem X55 5G & RF system
7500 Mbps down
3000 Mbps up
2000 Mbps down
316 Mbps up
x20 LTE
1200 Mbps down
150 Mbps up

Snapdragon 765/765G

Qualcomm also revealed that it’s bringing 5G to the masses with the new Snapdragon 765 and 765G. Qualcomm’s second 5G platform will include integrated 5G capabilities (something that the 865 doesn’t have) and will power non-flagship Android phones.

The 7nm EUV Samsung-fabricated 765 and 765G are aimed at mid-range mobile gear. The 765 sports eight 64-bit Arm-based Kryo 475 CPU cores clocked at up to 2.3GHz, an Adreno 620 GPU, a Hexagon 696 accelerator, and a Spectra 355 ISP. It can handle 4K HDR video capture and pictures up to 192 megapixels in size.

The 765G – the G stands for gaming – is the same except the CPU cores go up to 2.4GHz and the 765G’s GPU runs 20 per cent faster than the stock 765, we’re told.

Specifically, the eight Kryo 745 cores are made up of one Arm Cortex-A76 at 2.4 or 2.3GHz depending on whether it’s a G or non-G, one A76 at 2.2GHz, and six Cortex-A55s at 1.8GHz. The memory controller can take 2133MHz LPDDR4X RAM.

The 765 and 765G have Qualcomm’s X52 5G modem and radio electronics integrated because the US giant doesn’t mind compromising a little on these mid-range system-on-chips; integrating the modem reduces the number of chips in the device, which opens up more space for a larger battery and/or antennas, so there’s an upside to the trade off. The X52 can reach up to 3.7Gbps download speeds, we’re told, and supports mmWave 5G and sub-6GHz 5G and 4G/LTE.

There’s also support for 2.4 and 5GHz Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, a QHD+ touchscreen display at 60Hz or FHD+ at 120Hz, an external display up to UHD at 60Hz, up to 12GB of RAM, and hardware acceleration for voice-controlled digital assistants. It’s all an extension of the 700-series that Qualcomm emits regularly. Again, naturally, Qualcomm says the 765/765G perform faster than its previous 700-series offerings.

Qualcomm-powered Android phones with these chips and support for mmWave and sub-6GHz 5G are due to arrive in Q1 2020. Snapdragon 600-series chips, aimed at low-end and modest devices, are due to get 5G integrated modems in the second half of next year.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 and 765G specs

Snapdragon 765 / 765G Snapdragon 730 / 730G Snapdragon 675
CPU Kryo 475 octa-core
1x Prime @ 2.3GHz (Cortex-A76)
1x Performance @ 2.2GHz (Cortex-A76)
6x Efficiency @ 1.8GHz (Cortex-A55)
Kryo 470 octa-core
2x @ 2.2GHz (Cortex-A76)
6x @ 1.8GHz (Cortex-A55)
Kryo 460 octa-core
2x @ 2.0GHz (Cortex-A76)
6x @ 1.7GHz (Cortex-A55)
GPU Adreno 620 Adreno 618 Adreno 612
DSP Hexagon 696 with Tensor Accelerator Hexagon 688 with Tensor Accelerator Hexagon 685
Camera 36MP single/22MP dual with Zero Shutter Lag
192MP snapshot
48MP single/22MP dual
192MP snapshot
25MP single/16MP dual
48MP snapshot
Modem Snapdragon X52 5G/LTE
5G – 3700Mbps down, 1600Mbps up
4G – 1200Mbps down, 210Mbps up
Snapdragon X15 LTE
800Mbps down, 150Mbps up
Snapdragon X12 LTE
600Mbps down, 150Mbps up
Fast charging Quick Charge 4+
Quick Charge AI
Quick Charge 4+ Quick Charge 4+
Manufacturing process 7nm 8nm 11nm

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