ARM Cortex-X1 -- The Next-Gen Mobile CPU Architecture Explained


The Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G SoC is one of the industry's first SoCs to use the ARM Cortex-X1 CPU architecture. ARM Cortex-X1 is not a successor the ARM Cortex-A78, instead, it's an all-new architecture that offers better performance in every aspect.

ARM Cortex-X1 -- The Next-Gen Mobile CPU Architecture Explained

The primary CPU core on the Snapdragon 888 5G SoC uses ARM Cortex-X1 with a clock speed of 2.84GHz with 1x1024KB pL2. When compared to the Cortex-A78, it offers up to 22 percent more integer performance. Similarly, when compared to Cortex-A77, it offers up to 30 percent more integer performance.

When it comes to machine learning performance, the Cortex-X1 offers 2x more ML performance when compared to both Cortex-A78 and the Cortex-A77.

ARM Cortex-X1 Is A Scalable Solution

As seen on the Snapdragon 888 5G SoC, the Cortex-X1 is a scalable solution, which allows chipset makers to include a single X1 core with three Cortex-A78 cores to save silicon area and improved peak performance.

The Snapdragon 888 5G SoC has a single Cortex-X1 core with 2.84GHz clock speed clubbed with three Cortex-A78 cores with 2.42GHz clock speed. Physically, Cortex-X1 is a big core when compared to the Cortex-A78, which means, a silicon designer can pack all the cores in a compact chipset.

When compared to the Cortex-A78, the Cortex-X1 offers a 25 percent increase in decode bandwidth. It also has a more cache 64kB L1 and up to 1MB L2 cache. On top of that, the upgraded dynamic cluster can now support 8MB of L3 cache. ARM Cortex-X1 can reach up to 3.0GHz peak CPU performance. It is also the first Cortex CPU to support CXC program.

ARM Cortex-X1 -- The Next-Gen Mobile CPU Architecture Explained

How Does It Translate To Real-World Performance?

Most games and regular apps still highly depend on single-core CPU performance. So, a phone with snapdragon 888 (Cortex-X1) will outperform a phone with the Snapdragon 865 (Cortex-A77). Similarly, due to the increase in single-core performance, a processor with the Cortex-X1 CPU will also lead in terms of multi-core CPU performance.

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