UFS, Snapdragon 821, 820, Snapdragon 625, 650, Helio X25 – Questions that needs to be answered

This is a short guide which will probably answer questions with regards to performance of mid-tier and high chipsets as well shed some light on some differences in the UFS and eMMC storage department.

PhonesRead Speeds (Mb/s)Write Speeds (Mb/s)RAM (Mb/s)
LeTV LeeCO Le 2 Max419 Mb/s136 Mb/s1,5327 Mb/s
Xiaomi Mi5s 407 Mb/s172 Mb/sTBD
Xiaomi Mi Max (eMMC)184 Mb/s60 Mb/s8,817 Mb/s
Xiaomi Redmi Pro (eMMC)53 Mb/s105 Mb/s4,422 Mb/s

UFS stands for Universal Flash Storage, most high end or Flagship Smartphones have this instead of eMMC.  On paper, it is said to be twice, thrice or 5 times faster than the standard eMMC. In comparison, it is probably similar to an SSD.

Which one is faster?

On paper or at least on Benchmark tests, the UFS totally destroys eMMC. Basing on the table above, two phones, the Xiaomi Mi5s and the LeeCo Le 2 Max, have very impressive performance compared to the eMMC. Right speeds are considerably faster, which is quite common.

How about eMMC?

eMMC is a bit varied and may depend on the phone you are using. For example, on the table above, the Xiaomi Mi Max speed is considerably higher compared to the Xiaomi Redmi Pro (Read Speeds). But falters on the Write speeds, as the Xiaomi Redmi Pro excels in this area. So, the results will vary on each phone that is presented or tested. And thus, eMMC test scores are not constant.

RAM Speeds?

The memory or RAM, even if they all say LPDDR3  or DDR4, are dependent on the Chipset used. For example above, the LeeCo Le 2 Max has an overall Memory speed of 1.5Gb/s. Which is also attributed to the capability of Snapdragon 820. The slower chipsets also have slower RAM speeds.

Phones that offer UFS (Universal Flash Storage) mentioned

eMMC Powered Phones mentioned here

CPU BenchmarkSnapdragon 625
Octa Core
Asus Zenfone 3 ZE55KL
Snapdragon 650/652
Xiaomi Mi Max
Mediatek Helio X25
Deca Core
Xiaomi Redmi Pro
PCMark Work Experienceuntested57105193
GeekbenchSingle: 929
Multicore: 5197
Single: 1442
Multicore: 2377
Single: 1738
Multicore: 2900
GPU BenchmarkAdreno 506Adreno 510Mali-T880
3DMark Ice StormuntestedMaxed OutMaxed Out
3DMark ExtremeuntestedMaxed Out9558
3DMark Unlimiteduntested1820715073
3DMark Slingshot 3.0untested12241109
3DMark Slingshot 3.1465775897
Mortal Combat X
Modern Combat 5
Asphalt 8
Asphalt 8
Occasional Frame
No issues with gamingAsphalt 8
Occasional Frame


The Snapdragon vs. Mediatek (who comes on top)?

Actually that question has to be answered more on detail.

Snapdragon 650 (represented by the Xiaomi Mi Max). An Octa Core based Chipset has been out before the Helio X25 and the Snapdragon 625.

Snadragon 650 vs. Mediatek Helio X25

No question, in terms of raw power and benchmark performance. The 10 core Helio X25 wins hands down. But on real world usage, having used both the Xiaomi Mi Max and Xiaomi Redmi Pro extensively, I can say that performance is on Par. No slowdowns when opening multiple apps, no lags on the User Interface or any problem that I have known.

But… when it comes to GPU

Adreno 510 (Snapdragon 650) vs. Mali-T880 (Helio X25)

This is where the performance difference is noticeable. Even looking at the Benchmarks, it is clear that Adreno wins. And on my real world gaming use. I did notice occasional frame drops on the Mali GPU. The other games that I tested, Mortal Combat X and Modern Combat 5 ran fine.

Snapdragon 625 vs. 650/Helio X25

The new Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 (represented by the Asus Zenfone 3 ZE552KL). Is now a Octa Core Chip, and is a variation of the old 650/652. And when it comes to benchmark scores (CPU), clearly it sticks close to the Snapdragon 650 and even beating it on some test (Geekbench).

Adreno 506 (Snapdragon 625) vs. Adreno 510

When it comes to gaming, the Adreno 510 still wins, not just basing on the benchmark scores but also on real world gaming test. The performance of the Adreno 506 is quite similar to the Mali-T880, it did experience occasional frame drops especially on quick rendering games such as Asphalt 8.

Benchmarks aren’t the whole picture

But they are a good indication of what you can expect of the performance. At least, in this Article, you have known that Adreno still wins in terms of gaming. And Benchmarks even with 10 core CPU’s isn’t really noticeable on real world test.

Phones mentioned here:

Other phones that may interest you: Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 Pro (Snapdragon 650)

BenchmarksSnapdragon 821
(Xiaomi Mi5s)
Snapdragon 820
(Leeco Le 2 Max)
GeekbenchSingle: 1,685
Multicore: 4,133
Single: 1,327
Multicore: 3,267
Benchmarks (GPU)Adreno 530 (Xiaomi Mi5s)Adreno 530 (Leeco Le 2 Max)
3DMark Slingshot 3.11,9052,097
Ice Storm Unlimited2,72432,5805
Mortal Combat X
Modern Combat 5
Asphalt 8
Fluid Gaming, No Lags
No Frame Drops
Fluid Gaming, No Lags
No Frame Drops


Now we are talking about Flagships or Phones that offer the best Performance

The Snapdragon 821 was recently introduced, and everyone was asking with regards to performance boost. So here is a short Article answering that question.

CPU Performance (Snapdragon 821 vs. Snapdragon 820)

In this test, I have compared the Xiaomi Mi5s, the successor to the Mi5 and the LeTV LeeCo Le 2 Max, which I am currently using.

The Snapdragon 821 represented by the Xiaomi Mi5s, in terms of benchmarks is actually much faster, and the Antutu Benchmark tests proves that. It is even hitting close to 150K points. But on real world test, both phones actually have no difference. Since the CPU’s are accustomed to Multitasking and enough for most users, the performance I can say is similar. You don’t experience any slowdowns or any issues with performance.

How about the GPU? Adreno 530

It’s actually the same GPU used, and so far, no real improvements on the Gaming Department. All games, as of this moment run great. The Mi5s has a 1080p Display. The LeeCo Le 2 Max has a much higher 2K Quad HD Display and it still has no problems running 3D intensive games with ease.

Phones mentioned

I hope this article was a big help to those who aren’t really familiar with the technicalities. I did not go deep into the minor details, but more concentrated on the Overall Performance benefits.

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