System Performance

At this point, the performance of Snapdragon 616 is pretty much a known quantity. Nothing much has changed from Snapdragon 615. On paper, you have Snapdragon 615 with a peak clock speed of 1.7GHz on one of the Cortex A53 clusters, and a peak clock speed of 1.0GHz on the other. In practice, we've seen other implementations where one cluster goes up to 1.5GHz and the other goes to 1.11GHz. Snapdragon 616 in the Honor 5X is essentially the same as those implementations, with a small 90MHz boost on the second cluster.

Since pretty much all of Qualcomm's mid range and low end SoCs act as a quad core A53 CPU in practice, the differences in performance tend to come from the small frequency differences between them, as well as software differences from device to device. With the Honor 5X one would hope that it's able to match the Huawei P8 Lite for performance, and pull ahead of the 2015 Moto E and Moto G models by a small margin.

Kraken 1.1 (Chrome/Safari/IE)

Google Octane v2  (Chrome/Safari/IE)

WebXPRT 2015 (Chrome/Safari/IE)

In our web browser benchmarks I would say that the Honor 5X performs right around where you'd expect. Scores are very close to the Moto G (2015) and the P8 Lite, which is where they should be when one considers that all the devices are basically bound by the performance of a single Cortex A53 core running at 1.4 to 1.5GHz. The gap in Octane does strike me as interesting though, as that Snapdragon 615 ran at the same 1.5GHz frequency as the Honor 5X's Snapdragon 616. Unfortunately, I no longer have the P8 Lite to take a look at this.

Basemark OS II 2.0 - System

Basemark OS II 2.0 - Memory

Basemark OS II 2.0 - Graphics

Basemark OS II 2.0 - Web

In pretty much all of BaseMark OS II's tests the Honor 5X is very close to the P8 Lite. The web test shows a larger gap between the two, with the Moto G actually performing closer to the P8 Lite than the Honor 5X does. Where the Honor 5X really pulls away from Snapdragon 400 series devices is the graphics performance sub test. Adreno 405 is simply much faster than Adreno 305/306 which we see in the Snapdragon 400 series SoCs, and that's just one of the benefits you get when paying the premium to move up from the $100-150 price bracket.

PCMark - Web Browsing

PCMark - Video Playback

PCMark - Writing

PCMark - Photo Editing

The Honor 5X doesn't make as strong of a showing in PCMark as it does in our web tests and BaseMark OS II. It ends up sitting behind the Moto G in all but one test, and often by a noticeable margin. Once again we see that there's a gap with web browsing performance, which in light of the similar gaps in Octane and BaseMark's web test makes me wonder if there's something on the software side reducing performance compared to Motorola's fairly "stock" firmware. One thing to note is that Huawei has addressed the problems they were having with the writing sub test, and we haven't been seeing the triple digit scores of devices like the P8 Lite for some time now.

Apart from the curious case of the Zenfone 2, Snapdragon 615/616 offers the best performance that you're going to get in a $200 smartphone. The Honor 5X does appear to have some odd reductions in web browsing performance compared to other Snapdragon 410 and 615 smartphones, including Huawei's own P8 Lite, but it's difficult to say exactly what could be causing this beyond it probably being something different in the software between all these devices.

Intro and Design System Performance Cont'd and NAND Performance
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  • UtilityMax - Thursday, March 3, 2016 - link

    Indeed. If the device is mid-range, shouldn't it be at least competitive with a three year old flagship SoC, such as the Snapdragon 800? Looking at the benchmarks, SD800 is still much faster at least in single threaded benchmarks. But the market "has spoken". We "need" 64-bit and eight cores they said..
  • LiverpoolFC5903 - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    I'd like to see the A53s clocked much higher (2.2-2.5 ghz) in mid range chipsets to make it competitive with previous gen Snapdragon 800 socs. SIngle threaded performance is still very critical in terms of javascript performance. A high clocked A53 based soc with dual channel RAM and a decent GPU is more than enough for most applications.
  • UtilityMax - Thursday, March 3, 2016 - link

    My thought too. Come on people. The Snapdragon 800 is three years old. Can't we have that level of performance in at least in a midrange smartphone these days? Instead, we see "midrange" devices with SoC performance that's about on the level with the original iPhone 5.
  • LiverpoolFC5903 - Thursday, March 3, 2016 - link

    Last years 'mid range' Qualcomm chipsets were laughably underpowered. Hell , my 3 year old Optimus G Pro with a 1.7ghz Snapdragon 600 and Adreno 320 2nd gen GPU is STILL faster than Snapdragon 615 phones. Dual channel memory and GPU makes a LOT of difference to the overall 'feel' and usability of a smartphone. And obviously single threaded performance, which is very important in day to day user experience, needs to be at least at the Snapdragon 800/801 range in 2016.
  • zodiacfml - Sunday, March 6, 2016 - link

    Right. There are some phones still available with those chips previous the 810 for a near mid-range price.
  • mmsmsy - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    How about Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 with Mediatek X10 or the Pro version with Snapdragon 650? In my opinion way more important phone to review that this one.
  • LiverpoolFC5903 - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    I dont believe Anandtech have done a review of ANY phone with the Helio X10. Would love to see a detailed analysis of that chipset, especially compared to erstwhile flagship socs from the 800 series.
  • Badelhas - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    But what I really want to see is AnandTech reviewing the HTC VIVE! :)
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    It's on my list of things I want to do.=)
  • LukaP - Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - link

    Hell the Mi4c is only a bit more expensive than this, and offers a S808 and otherwise pretty high end specs... This is a decisively lowend device.

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