Qualcomm made a significant statement at the annual Snapdragon Summit in Hawaii: the company unveiled the Snapdragon X Elite, a chip that it claims to be its most powerful processor to date. The Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 series of laptop chips recently changed its name to reflect the significant performance improvement anticipated in this new generation, following this cutting-edge Arm-based CPU.
A Marvel of Performance and Efficiency
With its 12 Oryon cores, the Snapdragon X Elite seeks to revolutionize mobile computing capacity. Qualcomm says this chip uses an impressive 68% less power while providing up to twice the CPU performance of Intel’s 13th-generation Core i7-1360P and i7-1355U CPUs. The X Elite, which is produced by TSMC using a 4nm architecture, has a normal clock speed of 3.8GHz and a dual-core boost that can reach 4.3GHz. It also has a large overall cache of 42MB and a memory bandwidth of 136 GB/s for LPDDR5x.
Overtaking the Rivals
The Snapdragon X Elite outperforms Apple’s M2 chip, achieving a notable 50% quicker peak multithreaded performance. Its integrated GPU further enhances the game, providing twice the graphical performance of the i7-13800H at ISO power.
Another trick up its bag is the new AI Engine from Qualcomm. An incredible 4.5 times higher than its rivals, the X Elite promises to produce up to 75 TOPs with its Adreno GPU, Hexagon NPU, and Oryon CPU combo. Notably, the processor has the fastest Stable Diffusion performance among laptop CPUs available on the market, capable of running huge language models with up to 13 billion parameters locally.
The Snapdragon X Elite also has compatibility with Wi-Fi 7, 5G connectivity with download speeds of up to 10 Gbps, AV1 4K HDR video encoding/decoding, and Qualcomm’s integrated Sensing Hub.
A Challenge and a Promise
The release of the Snapdragon X Elite is a critical milestone in Qualcomm’s efforts to maintain its competitiveness, particularly in light of competitors like Apple and Intel’s move away from x86-based CPUs. However, unlike Apple, Qualcomm does not take a cohesive approach to building its hardware and the software/OS that runs on it, which makes it difficult to translate these amazing specs into real-world performance. The Snapdragon X Elite-powered retail PCs, scheduled to go on sale in the middle of 2024, look to be the ultimate test of Qualcomm’s most recent laptop chip’s ability to offer the much anticipated real-world performance.