Alongside its flagship Snapdragon 865 chipset, Qualcomm announced two new options in its upper mid-tier portfolio during 2019’s Snapdragon Tech Summit. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 and Snapdragon 765G offer integrated 5G connectivity at a more affordable price point, along with a whole range of other features and improvements.
Both models replace the Snapdragon 730 and 730G as more affordable, high-performance chipsets for the super mid-tier market. Phones with these chips have previously appeared in the sub-$500 and even sub-$300 brackets. The Snapdragon 765 touts cutting-edge 5G and AI capabilities, placing it in a slightly more expensive bracket than its predecessor. However, this marks the start of much wider access to technologies that you had to pay around $1000 for just last 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|
|48MP single/22MP dual|
|25MP single/16MP dual|
|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+|
Making flagship features more affordable
Compared to its predecessor, the Snapdragon 765 offers a 20% boost to performance. This comes from an improved Kryo 475 CPU with speeds up to 2.4GHz and a suped up Adreno 620 GPU. The CPU switches over to a 1+1+6 Prime, Performance, and Efficiency CPU design this generation. This should result in a better balance of peak performance and all-day battery life. Especially when combined with Samsung’s 7nm EUV manufacturing process.
The large Prime core is based on the Cortex-A76 and hits 2.4GHz. It’s sat next to another smaller Cortex-A76 at 2.2GHz. There’s then 6 smaller Cortex-A55 based efficiency cores clocked at 1.8GHz. For extra performance, there’s also a gaming version of the Snapdragon 765 — the 765G — which we’ll get to in a minute. The chip also supports up to 12GB 2133MHz LPDDR4 RAM, displays up to a QHD+ resolution, 192MP camera snapshots, and 4K video capture.
The Snapdragon 765 also nabs a selection of flagship-tier features from the 800 series. HDR10+ support is in tow, as is Qualcomm’s Computer Vision-ISP from the Snapdragon 855 for enhanced imaging performance with a 4x power saving. This means imaging techniques like HDR, Night Mode, bokeh blur should run faster and produce higher quality results than before. Finally, Qualcomm’s fifth-gen AI engine is ported over partially intact, with a Hexagon 696 DSP with a dedicated Tensor Accelerator. The setup sports 5.5TOPS of AI compute. That’s about a third of the 15TOPS in the Snapdragon 865, but not far off the 7.5TOPS in the last-gen flagship Snapdragon 855. The Snapdragon 765 is a very decent AI performer.
The Snapdragon 765 is designed as a more affordable entry point to 5G, but it doesn’t scrimp on the important features. With high-end imaging, AI, and gaming features, the 765 and 765G are great looking processors in their own right.
5G won’t cost $1,000
The big selling point with the Snapdragon 765 range is integrated 5G support — a first for Qualcomm. This chipset fulfills Qualcomm’s promise to bring 5G to affordable price points in 2020. Best of all, this means you won’t have to splash out on expensive flagship phones to obtain faster data speeds.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 and 765G sport Qualcomm’s second-generation Snapdragon X52 5G modem. With peak download speeds of 3.6Gbps, dynamic spectrum sharing support, SA and NSA, and sub-6GHz and mmWave bands for global markets. Qualcomm claims this is the industry’s most powerful integrated 5G modem and it has essentially all the core features you’ll find in the high-end X55 modem. Just not the top-tier speeds.
However, this doesn’t mean that every Snapdragon 765 smartphone will support the full range of 5G connectivity. Although the X52 supports mmWave technology, this will require adding in some more expensive radio and antenna components. Qualcomm is simplifying 5G device development to keep costs down though . Its modular radio components for sub-6GHz and mmWave aim to help 5G scale quickly across price points.
mmWave support will likely be reserved for select markets at slightly higher price points. The chip also doesn’t even have to be used for 5G either, as the integrated 4G modem offers gigabit LTE speeds as well. I expect we’ll see a number of sub-6GHz implementations of the Snapdragon 765, and perhaps fewer mmWave 5G versions. That’s not really a problem though, as most global networks are kickstarting their 5G plans with sub-6GHz before moving to mmWave further down the line. Bottom line, 5G will be more affordable in 2020.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G for gamers
Just like the 730 series, there’s also a gaming-focused Snapdragon 765G model. Compared to the regular 765, the Snapdragon 765G promises a further 20% boost to graphics performance. Qualcomm selects “speed binned” chips for the 765G, meaning they can handle slightly higher GPU clocks and a CPU peak speed boost to 2.4GHz.
This gaming model comes complete with a subsection of Snapdragon Elite Gaming features, too. The chipset supports 120Hz display refresh rates at FHD+ resolutions — a first for a 700-series chipset. 10-bit HDR gaming is also supported, and Qualcomm promises smoother frame rates with the G model as well.
Otherwise, the two models share the same core features, complete with next-gen 5G and AI capabilities. Gaming prowess certainly isn’t the main selling point of the Snapdragon 765 series, but it’s a nice bonus for those who want some extra performance from their mid-tier smartphone.
5G is still in its infancy, even in countries with the most advanced rollouts. Premium-tier consumers are only just beginning to take advantage of enhanced data sheets, but those benefits will soon be available to more affordable handsets with the Snapdragon 765 series. While these phones won’t be super affordable, cheaper 5G phones will certainly cost hundreds of dollars less than today’s 5G flagships. Qualcomm expects 765 phones to appear in the sub-$500 bracket. That prospect arguably makes the 765 even more exciting than the flagship Snapdragon 865 announcement.
Smartphones based on Snapdragon 765 and 765G are expected to be commercially available in the first quarter of 2020.