AnandTech Catches Samsung Cheating - Mobile Copies PC Industry's Benchmark Behavior

In a rather interested article posted over at AnandTech, authors Brian Klug & Anand Lal Shimpi uncover a nasty card played by mobile industry-leader Samsung. Although the GT-I9500 Galaxy S4 comes with a PowerVR SGX 544MP3 GPU clocked at 480MHz default, in certain situations the clock frequencies ramp up to 533MHz. We are talking about very specific situations, chosen by Samsung, in order to get higher performance results. When the user loads the Quadrant, Benchmark Pi, or AnTuTu benchmark application, a little line of code titled "BenchmarkBoost" will have the PowerVR GPU automatically 'overclocked' from 480MHz to 533MHz.

It is not the first time that a hardware manufacturer gets caught red-handed. About ten years ago, Futuremark caught Nvidia (and ATI) do something quite similar in the 3DMark03 benchmark. As fast as the mobile industry is catching up in terms of performance, they are also catching up in learning how to "play" benchmarks.

Check out the article at AnandTech. Very interesting read!


Belgium Massman says:

Hehe, Samsung pulls an Nvidia.

South Africa Vivi says:


GENiEBEN says:

Wow, did everyone expect OTHERWISE?

K404 says:

Turbo based on application title, not application load :D

South Africa Vivi says:

LOL k404

Switzerland Christian Ney says:

K404 works for Samsung.

K404 says:

(Disclaimer: I don't, but if Samsung are reading this.....hi! I'm employable for fairly reasonable rates :D)

Austria Turrican says:

it's always like that. :D

Canada Vinster says:

ha ha awesome....

Australia Dinos22 says:

hahaha good one Samsung and funniest part is they called it BenchmarkBoost LOL

Belgium Massman says:

This is making BBC headlines: Samsung's response:

"Under ordinary conditions, the Galaxy S4 has been designed to allow a maximum GPU frequency of 533MHz," it said. "However, the maximum GPU frequency is lowered to 480MHz for certain gaming apps that may cause an overload, when they are used for a prolonged period of time in full-screen mode," it said. "Meanwhile, a maximum GPU frequency of 533MHz is applicable for running apps that are usually used in full-screen mode, such as the S Browser, Gallery, Camera, Video Player and certain benchmarking apps, which also demand substantial performance. Exynos 5 chip The Exynos 5 Octa uses GPU technology licensed from British firm ARM "The maximum GPU frequencies for the Galaxy S4 have been varied to provide optimal user experience for our customers, and were not intended to improve certain benchmark results."
Very weak response. Benchmarks are designed measure and compare performance. Increasing the performance in very specific workloads is simply cheating. "Optimising" ... haha!

Canada Trouffman says:

the Point is : optimizing for a benchmark specifically is cheating unless this is the real world behavior of other non benchmark application using the same load profile / concept.

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