When it comes to mobile phones, there are only a handful of parameters which the users look at to gauge the performance of their new handset. Out of all the parameters, the most important one has to be the processor. While the top-of-the-line processors like the Snapdragon 855 get all the limelight, the MediaTeks and the 600-series Snapdragons dominate the mid-range segment of smartphones right now. There is, however, a new chipset in the smartphone market which has not yet been seen on a lot of smartphones, and it is the MediaTek Helio P35. Currently, the chipset has been seen in Xiaomi’s Mi Play smartphone and the newly launched Tecno Phantom 9. But, the main question is, how does this MediaTek processor compare with the likes of other mid-range chipsets like the Snapdragon 660 or the Snapdragon 625. This is what we have decided to compare.
Helio P35 and Snapdragon 625 Chipset Architecture
Before we move on to the comparison between these chipsets, it is important to understand the underlying architecture and the hardware which these chipsets come with. Firstly the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 is an octa-core SoC with eight ARM Cortex-A53 CPU cores firing up to 2 GHz paired with an Adreno 506 GPU, a DDR3L-1866 memory controller and an X9 LTE (Cat 7, 4G+, 300 Mbps down, 150 Mbps up) modem. This chipset also supports 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1. It is manufactured in 14nm FinFet.
On the other hand, the MediaTek Helio P35 is a much more recent chipset, and this one integrates eight ARM Cortex-A53 cores in two clusters (big.LITTLE). The four performance cores clock up to 2.3 GHz. The integrated graphics card is PowerVR GE8320 and clocks with up to 680 MHz. The integrated memory controller supports LPDDR4x with 1500 MHz or 933 MHz LPDDR3. Furthermore, an LTE radio with Cat-7 (300 Mbps download) Cat-12 (150 Mbps upload) along with 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi modem is integrated.
Helio P35 vs Snapdragon 625, Snapdragon 636 and Snapdragon 660
On running a simple benchmark test, it becomes evident that the MediaTek Helio P35 scores a better score as compared to the Snapdragon 625. However, when it comes to competing with the Snapdragon 636, the chipset is a little behind. The difference in the benchmark scores and the slight difference in performance too is likely because the MediaTek processor is built on a 12nm process as opposed to the 14nm process which Snapdragon uses for the 636. Also, the cores of the Helio P35 are clocked at 2.3 GHz whereas the cores of Snapdragon clock up to 2.2 GHz.
When it comes to graphics, the Helio P35 supports Full HD+ display and supports up to 20:9 aspect ratio displays. This chipset also supports LPDDR3 and LPDDR4x RAM which can be either 4GB and 6GB and eMMC 5.1 storage. The phone with Helio P35 can sport either dual 13MP or a single 25MP sensor on the front. The SoC also enables a hardware depth engine for professional-level bokeh images alongside Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS) and Rolling Shutter Compensation (RSC) which does away with motion blur in images.
Comparison With the Snapdragon 675
In an overall comparison, the Snapdragon 675 also stands just a little ahead of the Helio P35 owing to the even smaller semiconductor size of 11nm. However, when it comes to CPU speeds, the SD 675 stands beaten as it only gets two cores clocking 2 GHz and six cores clocking 1.7 GHz which is less as compared to the Helio P35 or the Snapdragon 660. If there is one area where the Helio P35 sees defeat it’s in the case of integrated LTE which is supported by both Snapdragon 660 and the Snapdragon 675.
Technical jargon aside, when it comes to real life performance, the Helio P35 is a new contender in the mid-range segment which will promise impressive performance. The chipset undoubtedly stands ahead of the likes of Snapdragon 625 and almost parallels the performance of Snapdragon 675 while landing a few steps behind the Snapdragon 636. The only mid-range processor which exceeds the performance of the Helio P35 is the Snapdragon 660. Also, this processor bears a performance resemblance to the HiSilicon Kirin 650.