Skip to main content

Google Nexus 5 Review: A Fast, Affordable Phone With LTE For All

Results: GPU Benchmarks, Continued

Epic Citadel

Epic’s Unreal Engine is put to decent use in this benchmark, which simulates a reasonably simple first-person game environment. It’s a little old as benchmarks go, easily maxed out in Performance and High Quality modes by even older SoCs like Tegra 3. Yet, it does use a real game engine and can be a strain in Ultra High Quality mode.

EVGA's Tegra Note steals the show and our Nexus 5 places a pretty close second, only dipping at Ultra High quality. LG's G2 is probably missing out on the Project Svelte optimizations, while the Nexus 4 is definitely beginning to show its age. The HTC One seems to do fine, but then shows a very poor result when resources are stretched thin. Perhaps Sense is hogging the limelight?


Kishonti GFXBench 2.7 (previously known as GLBenchmark) is a cross-platform OpenGL GPU benchmark. It not only simulates scenes that a game might render, but also runs a series of additional tests that cover considerations like fill-rate, render accuracy, and so on. This is a demanding metric, especially the T-Rex scene because it uses many modern effects including motion blur, parallax mapping, and complex particle systems. We will only be concentrating on four main benchmarks in the suite: T-Rex HD Offscreen, Egypt HD Offscreen, T-Rex HD Onscreen, and Egypt HD Onscreen.

Performance is scaling almost perfectly linearly from Apple's Rogue-equipped A7 to Google's Adreno 320-equipped Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro. Our Nexus 5 and the LG G2 are practically scoring the same. EVGA's Tegra Note seems to struggle more than it should, judging from previous tests.

This is pretty much the same story, though we know the Tegra Note and Nexus 4 get the benefit of lower resolution displays. Meanwhile, the HTC One suffers the most for its high pixel count.

Mobile GPUMark

Silicon Studios’ Mobile GPUMark is a benchmark that employs the company’s own in-house engine called YEBIS 2. It focuses on post-processing effects like color grading, bloom, and lenticular lighting to create film-like scenes.

It's telling that the two modern devices with high-end GPUs and low-resolution displays fare the best. Google's Nexus 5 puts in a good performance considering its Full HD resolution, and the LG G2 isn't far behind. The Nexus 4 does pretty well in context to its resolution and slower CPU core clock rate. But again, the poor HTC One suffers extensively for its Full HD display.

Each colored line corresponds to a different resolution, so the playing field evens out. Google's Nexus 5 takes the lead, at least in this particular game engine. Tegra Note does best at the lowest resolution because it's hardly being strained to render a postage stamp, but the device suffers when resources run, thin having only 1GB of RAM to work with. The Nexus 4 surprises with a comfortable lead in two sub-720p resolutions, and yet the device struggles at its near-native resolution. We seriously don't understand what happened to the LG G2 here. It should have fared a lot better, and the same is true for HTC One, but we think that Sense is once again hogging resources on the latter.