MediaTek Announces New Helio G90 Series SoCs: Gaming Focused Mid-Range

Today MediaTek announces a new series in its product line-up: The new G-series starting off with the G90 and higher binned G90T. The new chips seemingly are a marketing exercise for MediaTek as it tries to battle again Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragon 7xx devices. The new G90 on paper very much looks like an update to the P90 which was announced late last year – updating the CPU and GPU IP whilst also slightly improving the camera capabilities of the chip.

MediaTek Current P- & G-Series
SoC Helio P90 Helio G90
(Helio G90T)
CPU 2x Cortex A75 @ 2.2GHz
6x Cortex A55 @ 2.0GHz
2x Cortex A76 @ 2.0GHz
6x Cortex A55 @ 2.0GHz
GPU PowerVR GM 9446 @ 970MHz Mali G76 MP4 @ 720MHz
APU / NPU / AI Proc. / Neural IP 2x +140GMACs
(Tensilica DSP)

+ In-house Inference Engine
1127GMACs total

2x APU

+1TOPs total perf

Memory 2x 16bit LPDDR4X @ 1866MHz LPDDR4X @ 2133MHz
ISP/Camera 1x 48MP
2x 24+16MP
1x 48MP (64MP)
2x 24+16MP
2160p30 H.264 & HEVC 2160p30 H.264 & HEVC
Integrated Modem Category 12/13

DL = 600Mbps
3x20MHz CA, 256-QAM, 4×4 MIMO

UL = 150Mbps
2x20MHz CA,64-QAM

Mfc. Process 12FFC

The new G90’s main feature update is the switch from Cortex A75 cores to new Cortex A76 based IP. The new cores are clocked in lower at 2.0GHz, which is 10% lower than the 2.2GHz of the P90. The higher binned variant, the G90T, ups the frequency slightly higher by 50MHz at up to 2.05GHz. The big cores are accompanied by the same core config as on the P90- 6 additional Cortex A55 cores running at up to 2.0GHz.

Another big change in the IP setup is that MediaTek is dropping Imagination’s 9XM core sin favour of a Mali G76. The new GPU comes in a MP4 configuration (MediaTek also likes to specify three execution engines per core), running at up to 720MHz in the G90 and 800MHz in the G90T. MediaTek promises 26% faster performance than its direct competitors, the competition here being Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 730.

Part of the gaming theme of the SoC, MediaTek promotes its new “HyperEngine” game technology. It looks here that this is a response to Huawei’s GPU Turbo or Qualcomm’s own variant – it’s a plethora of software optimisations that promise to improve the experience of the phone. The most important aspect for MediaTek here seems to be the promise of 60% shorter rendering latency.

In terms of the APU performance we don’t have immediate details of the G90’s, but it looks like things have remained relatively unchanged compared to the P90, with possibly Tensilica DSPs augmenting MediaTek’s own inference engine IP which is here stated to be able to operate at up to 1TOPs.

On the camera department, the regular G90 remains the same as the P90 with up to 48MP single-sensor ability or 24+16MP multi-sensor capture. The G90T clocks the ISP higher and promises compatibility with the newest 64MP sensors that have been announced by vendors such as Samsung.

The new chip continues to be manufactured on the 12nm FFC process and thus MediaTek should likely be able to price the chip extremely competitively against Qualcomm who has more advanced process node chips in this range.

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