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Benchmarks for Apple's iPad Air show 90% performance boost, tweaked A7 clock speed

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 
Ahead of Friday's iPad Air release, performance analytics firm Primate Labs is starting to see data trickle in from its Geekbench Browser, with the tablet's A7 system on a chip showing huge performance gains over last year's iPad.

Geekbench
Source: Primate Labs


Primate Labs founder John Poole compiled the results from iPads Airs running the Geekbench 3 benchmark, and compared them to all iOS 7-compatible tablets, which includes the iPad 2, third- and fourth-generation iPad and iPad mini.

As seen above, Apple's newest iPad trounces its predecessors by a hefty margin, beating last year's fourth-generation iPad by some 87 percent in the multi-core benchmark. This is near Apple's claim that its A7 SoC offers up to twice the performance compared to last year's A6X.

Poole notes that the iPad Air is running an A7 clocked at 1.4GHz, or 100MHz faster than the same processor found in the iPhone 5s. This could be due to the iPad's larger battery capacity or larger chassis, which would provide for better thermal flexibility, or a combination of the two, he said.

While the full-size iPad has a tweaked clock speed, Poole does not expect the same for the iPad mini, which will also feature the A7 chip. Instead, he believes the machine will be in line with the iPhone 5s.

Since the third-generation iPad debuted with a Retina display in 2012, Apple has used a higher-spec processor for its tablet lineup, differentiating the custom chip by adding an "X" to its name. The most recent version, the A6X, featured an integrated quad-core GPU and higher clock speed than the iPhone's A6 version. In addition, the A6X also featured a larger SDRAM pipeline.

Finally, when compared to Apple's entry-level iPad 2, the iPad Air is over five times as fast, while costing only $100 more.

Apple's iPad Air will go on sale this Friday, with Apple Stores opening at 8 a.m. local time for the launch.
post #2 of 46
"Finally, when compared to Apple's iPad Air, the entry-level iPad 2 is over five times as slow, while costing only $100 less." - there, fixed it for you 1wink.gif
post #3 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marsattack View Post

"Finally, when compared to Apple's iPad Air, the entry-level iPad 2 is over five times as slow, while costing only $100 less." - there, fixed it for you 1wink.gif

 

wtf does "five times as slow" mean.

 

ITYM "the iPad 2 is under one fifth of the speed".

 

ION the iPad Air is looking like the large tablet to get this year, and the iPad Mini is definitely the small tablet to get if it will be nearly the same speed.

post #4 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider 
Finally, when compared to Apple's entry-level iPad 2, the iPad Air is over five times as fast, while costing only $100 more.

It's five times faster than iPad 2 in a multi-core test. But the shocking point is it's 5 times as fast in the same test with iPad 3. I can see iPad 3 owners being surprised by this.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #5 of 46
I am curious to see how the iPad mini retina will perform.
Hopefully it will be about the same as the iPad Air.
post #6 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider 
Finally, when compared to Apple's entry-level iPad 2, the iPad Air is over five times as fast, while costing only $100 more.

It's five times faster than iPad 2 in a multi-core test. But the shocking point is it's 5 times as fast in the same test with iPad 3. I can see iPad 3 owners being surprised by this.

Yes, if they are stupid and ignorant folks.

The iPad 3 used the same a5, just a better GPU.

 

Heck, Apple is using and abusing the a5 so much, always trying new approaches, making it smaller, more efficient, that I think that something watch-like will use it, someday.

post #7 of 46
Any benchmarking info with the Sammicat, Amazon brick, Micosoft' me 2 or Googlepad?
post #8 of 46

Does multi-core matter to me ? I'll guess the most cpu intensive activity our G2 iPad is asked to perform is simple photo editing. That has never been so slow to cause complaint, and likewise for internet browsing, video streaming, iOS interaction, and all the apps we use. 

 

I suppose I am asking who will notice and appreciate this speed bump. I would probably be happier with a *slower* cpu and more battery time. Now that I run 12 hours on a charge, I want 24 ;) 

post #9 of 46
I think i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

It's five times faster than iPad 2 in a multi-core test. But the shocking point is it's 5 times as fast in the same test with iPad 3. I can see iPad 3 owners being surprised by this.
I think I'll be happier coming from iPad 3 which was given to my parents just few says ago.
I might buy iPad air instead of mini as it is much lighter than the iPad 3 now.

my way or the highway...

Macbook Pro i7 13" with intel SSD 320 series and 8GB RAM, iPhone 5, iPad 3 (Retina)

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my way or the highway...

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post #10 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

It's five times faster than iPad 2 in a multi-core test. But the shocking point is it's 5 times as fast in the same test with iPad 3. I can see iPad 3 owners being surprised by this.
I know I'm excited to get rid of my 3rd gen. I think the biggest reason we got the 4th gen so soon after the 3rd gen was the A5X wasn't that great.
post #11 of 46
I do feel like a fool for having bought the iPad 3.

It does seem like Apple is cutting corners in some areas, when the introduce some new exciting feature. Look at the retina MacBook Pro, the first one was a little underpowered in the GPU department compared to the current revs.

When Apple comes out with their first 4K laptop, I guess I'll wait until the second revision.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

It's five times faster than iPad 2 in a multi-core test. But the shocking point is it's 5 times as fast in the same test with iPad 3. I can see iPad 3 owners being surprised by this.
post #12 of 46

Damn. 5x faster than the iPad3.

 

So I guess we can expect the iPadMini Retina to be slightly slower than the Air because of clock speed?

post #13 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post
 

So I guess we can expect the iPadMini Retina to be slightly slower than the Air because of clock speed?

The whole article I'm just thinking how massive a jump it will be for the iPad mini even if it isn't clocked as high. Totally different experience going from the iPad 2 to the iPad 3 where the Retina display caused it to be larger, heavier, and basically the same speed even though it came a year later. The iPad looks to be very slightly bulkier but a huge jump in display AND speed.

Must have been the plan back when the iPad mini was designed.

So, those of us in the know and not buying in bulk for institutions know to stay far away from the non-retina iPad mini and iPad 2 as you save so little money for such huge compromises. (Though the price difference in the iPad mini is a larger percentage so maybe not quite as dramatic.)

post #14 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


I know I'm excited to get rid of my 3rd gen. I think the biggest reason we got the 4th gen so soon after the 3rd gen was the A5X wasn't that great.


Nah I would imagine that the 4th gen's release was timed to come out with the lightning connection

post #15 of 46
This benchmark is very close to some of the current Macs using the same test.
Is an ARM transition eminent? Remember how much of a surprise the Intel transition was? It doesn't make sense to tell people about it until the very last moment.
Now would be a good time since windows is weaker than ever with win 8.
Price is really what is holding the Mac back from the masses. I don't think PC compatibility is as big a boon as it once was.
Maybe win RT compatibility? ;-D
post #16 of 46
How warm does it get?
post #17 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by TailsToo View Post

I do feel like a fool for having bought the iPad 3.

It does seem like Apple is cutting corners in some areas, when the introduce some new exciting feature. Look at the retina MacBook Pro, the first one was a little underpowered in the GPU department compared to the current revs.

When Apple comes out with their first 4K laptop, I guess I'll wait until the second revision.

'cutting corners'  is  a harsh term for 'making hard design decisions to stay inside the performance envelope'  And anything Apple makes with a battery is gonna always be short on raw performance to make sure it hits the battery life window, which is the primary dimension of the portable envelope (battery life x weight x performance).  

 

I think you'll be underwhelmed by a 4K laptop no matter the rev, unless you strap it to a 4K 30+" monitor.

 

I think Apple's 'half rev' of the iPad4 fooled a lot of iPad buyers.   I'm still running on a 2 (for another week or so), and it's doing me fine.

My big decision is a 15"MBPrd or an iPadAir, which may not be a decision at all (although I want to retire my iPad2 to just be a Home Automation/Theatre control panel... such decisions I have).

post #18 of 46
I'm coming from an iPad 3, planned on the iPad mini w/ retina but now leaning toward the Air. I can't wait. 5x the speed of my iPad 3 sounds great - iOS 7 has not treated my iPad 3 very well!
post #19 of 46

Why is iPad2 and iPad3 the same speed?

Are all the resources of the A5X processor going to the display and don't show up in the test?

post #20 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by dombi View Post

I am curious to see how the iPad mini retina will perform.
Hopefully it will be about the same as the iPad Air.

My guess is that the iPad Mini's clock rate will be decreased in order to maintain that 10 hour battery life using that smaller battery with the same amount of pixels to push. The near 50% smaller backlight helps considerably with the power drain but I don't know if it's enough on it's own.
post #21 of 46

The Ipad3 and Ipad2 had basically the same processor, The Ipad 3 had a better GPU which was almost completely spent keeping up with the new Retina display.

 

In my opinion, the Ipad3 was not a balanced device. The Ipad 4 pretty much fixed all the failings of the Ipad3 and was a great product. The 'Air' sounds fantastic.

 

I am hoping to see apps coming out that really use that power.

post #22 of 46
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtherGeoff View Post
 

I think Apple's 'half rev' of the iPad4 fooled a lot of iPad buyers.   I'm still running on a 2 (for another week or so), and it's doing me fine.[/quote]

I always get a little annoyed when people call the iPad 4 a minor improvement- which seems to be the common consensus.  The iPad to iPad 2 was significant.  The iPad 3 to iPad 4 was much more significant than the iPad 2 to iPad 3.  The 2 to 3 doubled ram, and added Retina.  That's it.  The "X" was only added to power the retina display, and we saw no performance increase in the iPad itself.  The iPad 4, on the other hand, got a CPU and graphics that doubled and tripled that of the iPad 3- all while increasing the front camera,  and running more efficiently (almost 20% more)- resulting in a significantly reduced heat-load.  The iPad 4 was a significantly larger leap forward vs the 3 than the 3 was to the 2.

 

Biggest model changes:

iPad 4 -> iPad Air

iPad -> iPad 2

iPad 3 -> iPad 4

iPad 2 -> iPad 3


Edited by Andysol - 10/30/13 at 8:46am

2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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post #23 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pezza99 View Post
 

The Ipad3 and Ipad2 had basically the same processor, The Ipad 3 had a better GPU which was almost completely spent keeping up with the new Retina display.

 

In my opinion, the Ipad3 was not a balanced device. The Ipad 4 pretty much fixed all the failings of the Ipad3 and was a great product. The 'Air' sounds fantastic.

 

I am hoping to see apps coming out that really use that power.

Exactly what I just said.  ;)

2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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post #24 of 46
For me the main bottleneck on speed is Wi-Fi. Does the Air have the latest Wi-Fi chip?
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post #25 of 46
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post
For me the main bottleneck on speed is Wi-Fi. Does the Air have the latest Wi-Fi chip?

 

Define ‘latest’. No, it doesn’t have .11ac, but it has MIMO.

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Define ‘latest’. No, it doesn’t have .11ac, but it has MIMO.
Since current AirPort Extreme has .11ac it would be nice if iPad Air did too. I currently have iPad "3"— what Wi-Fi version does it support? MIMO too?
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post #27 of 46
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post
Since current AirPort Extreme has .11ac it would be nice if iPad Air did too. I currently have iPad "3"— what Wi-Fi version does it support? MIMO too?

 

No, but it was n.

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #28 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smalltalk-80 View Post

This benchmark is very close to some of the current Macs using the same test.
Is an ARM transition eminent? Remember how much of a surprise the Intel transition was? It doesn't make sense to tell people about it until the very last moment.
Now would be a good time since windows is weaker than ever with win 8.
Price is really what is holding the Mac back from the masses. I don't think PC compatibility is as big a boon as it once was.
Maybe win RT compatibility? ;-D

An Intel processor is still much quicker than any of the latest ARM offerings. It will still be some time before Apple or any other company makes a full transition to an all ARM lineup. As you can see by the Mac Mini, it has a score of 11,700, quite the difference when compared to the iPad 2013.

When I looked up "Ninjas" in Thesaurus.com, it said "Ninja's can't be found" Well played Ninjas, well played.
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When I looked up "Ninjas" in Thesaurus.com, it said "Ninja's can't be found" Well played Ninjas, well played.
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post #29 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by eGold View Post

Does multi-core matter to me ? I'll guess the most cpu intensive activity our G2 iPad is asked to perform is simple photo editing. That has never been so slow to cause complaint, and likewise for internet browsing, video streaming, iOS interaction, and all the apps we use. 

I suppose I am asking who will notice and appreciate this speed bump. I would probably be happier with a *slower* cpu and more battery time. Now that I run 12 hours on a charge, I want 24 1wink.gif 

Graphic intensity games will be the first to enjoy this higher speed, but as developers begin to write apps that take advantage of the higher computation capacity there could be a whole new level of apps that neither you nor I can imagine... perhaps artificial intelligence. Lord knows, the U.S. congress members could use an intelligence boost.
"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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post #30 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

Damn. 5x faster than the iPad3.

So I guess we can expect the iPadMini Retina to be slightly slower than the Air because of clock speed?

Maybe not. The iPad Mini has 1/4th pixels to push around as its big brother.
"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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post #31 of 46
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post
Maybe not. The iPad Mini has 1/4th pixels to push around as its big brother.

 

Er… what?

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #32 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by dombi View Post

I am curious to see how the iPad mini retina will perform.
Hopefully it will be about the same as the iPad Air.
Almost garanteed unless apple sneaked something in there for speed.
post #33 of 46
I'm not sure it would matter if the iPad had 802.11ac wifi. I suspect an ARM-based device isn't fast enough to make use of the bandwidth provided by an 802.11ac connection. Maybe by the time of the iPad 6 or 7... But for now, I'm sure a MIMO-n connection is plenty sufficient to saturate an iPad's capability.

And do we even know if anyone produces an 802.11ac chip yet that's power-efficient enough to be put in a tablet without killing the battery life? And "Samsung does it" is not a sufficient answer; they do plenty of things that aren't power-efficient but instead so they can check off feature boxes (and this from someone who owns Samsung products).
post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbsmd View Post

I'm not sure it would matter if the iPad had 802.11ac wifi. I suspect an ARM-based device isn't fast enough to make use of the bandwidth provided by an 802.11ac connection. Maybe by the time of the iPad 6 or 7... But for now, I'm sure a MIMO-n connection is plenty sufficient to saturate an iPad's capability.

And do we even know if anyone produces an 802.11ac chip yet that's power-efficient enough to be put in a tablet without killing the battery life? And "Samsung does it" is not a sufficient answer; they do plenty of things that aren't power-efficient but instead so they can check off feature boxes (and this from someone who owns Samsung products).

I'm guessing it is because there isn't a decent chip to use. If you look at AnandTech's results you see that Apple's 802.11n is much faster than some devices that tout 802.11ac. That doesn't even take into account how much additional power is used when 802.11ac is active, which Apple will likely include as the default WiFi for battery tests when they do add it.
post #35 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by allenbf View Post

I'm coming from an iPad 3, planned on the iPad mini w/ retina but now leaning toward the Air. I can't wait. 5x the speed of my iPad 3 sounds great - iOS 7 has not treated my iPad 3 very well!

Ditto here.

my way or the highway...

Macbook Pro i7 13" with intel SSD 320 series and 8GB RAM, iPhone 5, iPad 3 (Retina)

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my way or the highway...

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post #36 of 46
I feel like Apple misled me then when I bought my iPad 3
 
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post #37 of 46
I have a second generation iPad and still do not notice any speed issues browsing, playing games or even updating. I know my display has 1/4 of the pixels to push so I guess that counts for some of the quickness. I also would like to see crazy battery life over crazy speed.
post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

I feel like Apple misled me then when I bought my iPad 3

Yes, I can see you feeling yourself misled, easily misled. Or saying so in a public forum in order to whine about Apple, careless of what we might think of you. Poor sad 30-pin pazuzu.
post #39 of 46
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post
I feel like Apple misled me then when I bought my iPad 3

 

In what capacity?! Maybe you should sue.

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #40 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

I feel like Apple misled me then when I bought my iPad 3


Yes, how dare Apple come out with a better, improved iPad two years after you bought your iPad3.

Just between you and me, I hear Apple is coming out with an iPad7 and will make the new iPad look like lead weights, and the iPad7 will be 1/12th the horsepower of the iPad 13 coming out in five years.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 

 

In what capacity?! Maybe you should sue.


Yeah, he should retain the services of Whiner & Troll Attorneys at Law.

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