Qualcomm announces Snapdragon 805: 2.5GHz, Adreno 420 GPU with 4K display support

November 20, 2013
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Qualcomm just took the veil off its latest high-performance system on a chip, the Snapdragon 805, combining the fastest mobile CPU ever with the new Adreno 420 GPU.

The Snapdragon 805 is equipped with a quad-core Krait 450 CPU clocked at 2.5GHz, 200MHz more than the previous leader, the Snapdragon 800. Moreover, Qualcomm doubled memory bandwidth support to a maximum of 25.6 GB/second, compared to the 12.8GB/second on the Snapdragon 800.

Snapdragon 805: Krait 450 CPU Adreno 420 GPU Ultra HD

Graphics capabilities are significantly improved, with added support for hardware tessellation and geometry shaders, as well as 4K (Ultra HD) rendering. In fact, Qualcomm bills the Snapdragon 805 as “the first end-to-end Ultra HD solution”, with concurrent 4K support for both display and TV output. This means devices equipped with the 805 will be able to play back video recorded at 4K at its native resolution. The Adreno 420 GPU is supposedly 40 percent more powerful than the Adreno 330 on the Snapdragon 800.

On the connectivity side, the Snapdragon 805 will integrate either a Gobi MDM9x25 or a Gobi MDM9x35 modem. The former was announced earlier this year and is capable of LTE carrier aggregation and up to 150Mbps LTE 4 download peak rates, while the latter boasts download speeds of up to 300Mbps. On the WiFi front, there’s a 2-stream dual-band Qualcomm Vive 802.11ac chip that should be able to stream 4K video without breaking a sweat.

According to Qualcomm, devices running on Snapdragon 805 will benefit from another industry first, Gpixel/second throughput camera interface, which should ensure faster camera operation and more advanced real-time image processing.

Advanced sensor integration is one of the hot trends in smartphones this year, and the Snapdragon 805 will shine in this department too. The new SoC is the “first mobile processor with advanced, low-power, integrated sensor processing, enabled by its custom DSP, designed to deliver a wide range of sensor-enabled mobile experiences”.

Qualcomm says it already started sampling the 805 to partners, with the first devices expected in the first half of next year. We recently heard about a CyanogenMod device running on a mystery 2.5GHz 8974AC processor that’s very likely the Snapdragon 805. The first manufacturer to announce a device running on 8974AC will be the Chinese company Gionee on November 26.

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