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The Cortex-A73, a CPU that won't overheat - Gary explains

Posted May 30, 2016 by Gary Sims

  1. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    ARM has announced a new CPU core design, the Cortex-A73. It is faster, but more importantly it has great power efficiency during periods of sustained usage.

    If you want to discuss anything about my video and/or article on the Cortex-A73 then please reply to this thread.
     
  2. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    Last edited by a moderator: May 30, 2016
  3. peter11star

    peter11star Active Member Protocol Droid

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    Do you think this means that OEMs could use slightly smaller batteries in Cortex A73 phones in the coming years? This chip does sound like it can use less battery.
     
  4. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    Good question. However there isn't a simple answer. Yes the A73 uses less power (20%), so technically that could mean that phones using the A73 could use 20% smaller batteries.

    However, it also depends if the SoC is combined with other cores (like the A53 or Cortex-A35) in a big.LITTLE combination. It also depends on what GPU is included in the SoC. The chipmakers might favor a 20% bigger GPU.

    And then of course it depends on the screen size + resolution and other components of the phone.
     
  5. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    Hi Gary, how does the Cortex A-73 manage to overcome heating even under high performance. Could you elaborate more on that?
    Is having a smaller Silicon chip beneficial for a device? If it is, how does the heating relate to it? Is heating inversely proportional to the size of the chip (considering same optimizations on both chip with bigger cross section area and the chip with the lesser one). You mentioned in your video that there is increase in performance on using a chip of smaller size. I ask you this beacuse I read somewhere that chips with larger surface area dissipate heat quickly since they have larger surface area.
    I need some help on this.
     
  6. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    It doesn't really work like that, each core of the A73 is 0.65 mm2, so that isn't very big... The secret is not to produce the heat in the first place. That is the secret sauce.
     
  7. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    Do you mean to say that we are at a stage of SoC design where there is no heat generated? But how is that possible?
     
  8. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    No, not at all, I didn't say that... Your original questions was, "how does the Cortex A-73 manage to overcome heating even under high performance." My reply is that isn't to do with surface area, but rather the design of the CPU so that there isn't lots of heat generated under high performance. That is what distinguishes and ARM chip from an Intel chip. ARM is power efficient, designed for markets like mobile, but has less performance than a desktop CPU (i.e. A Cortex-A73 can't compete with an i7 in terms of perf, but an A73 runs at only a few watts, not 100+ watts).
     
  9. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    Thanks Gary, I'll do some research on this.
     
  10. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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  11. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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  12. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    Hey, Gary, I went through both of your articles and I was surprised to know that you actually worked with DEC! That is awesome!
    As with the second article, I don't know a lot of the technical terms that were specified there.
    I guess I concluded that ARM is here to stay and with definitely play a big part in the future.
    Also, as you were saying, the new chip generates less heat during peak performance (it also means that they there are negligible power losses and that is amazing).
    Also, I request you to do a video on the comparison of the best SoC of 2016.
    Great work as always Gary!
     
  13. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    This is coming, but it will me more towards the end of the summer...
     
  14. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    You must be waiting for a the new flagship Snapdragon chip?
     
  15. mehdiosx

    mehdiosx Member Scrap Metal

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    what about the battery hit?
     
  16. Kunal Narang

    Kunal Narang Member Drone Droid

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    That is how the design is, there is minimal heat produced with sustained usage which means better performance and lower hit on battery.
     
  17. nAbEEL hAidEr

    nAbEEL hAidEr Member Scrap Metal

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    I wanted to ask which core combination is best i mean as u explained in video that companies are making combinations of cortex A-53*2 + Cortex A-72*2 or the cortex A-53*4. so which combination is better if u could plz explain
    thanks
     
  18. Gary Sims

    Gary Sims Team AA Staff Member Team AA

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    That is a good question, which doesn't have a good answer because it depends what you mean by "best." Best performance, best power efficiency, best cost, best usage of silicon?

    So:
    4xA53+4xA72 would give the best performance.
    4xA53+2xA72 would give the best power efficiency with good performance
    2XA54+2xA72 would give best cost with good performance
    2xA72 would be smallest silicon area, good performance but maybe less power efficiency

    Does that help?
     
  19. nAbEEL hAidEr

    nAbEEL hAidEr Member Scrap Metal

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    Yeah that helped to clear a lot of ambiguity in my mind thanks :)
     

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