Google Nexus 10 Review: Is 2560x1600 High-Def Enough?

Results: CPU Performance

As mentioned, Google's Nexus 10 centers on Samsung's Exynos 5 Dual SoC, formerly referred to as the 5250. The chip couples two Cortex-A15 cores running at 1.7 GHz with ARM's Mali-T604 (the number four indicating quad-core) GPU. Samsung manufacturers the Exynos 5 Dual on its 32 nm high-k metal gate process, which it says results in 30%-lower power consumption than the Exynos 4 Dual manufactured using a 45 nm node. With that said, we're curious to see how it stacks up against Qualcomm's existing S4 Plus and Nvidia's upcoming Tegra 4 SoCs, both of which benefit from a 28 nm process.

We discussed the Cortex-A15 superficially on page two of Snapdragon S4 Pro: Krait And Adreno 320, Benchmarked. Briefly, though, the -A15 employs the ARMv7 instruction set, just like ARM's Cortex-A9 design. The company claims performance up to 40% better than its prior-generation design at a given clock rate, though. Technically, a cluster of four Cortex-A15 cores supports up to 4 MB of L2 cache. But Samsung only arms its Exynos 5 Dual with 1 MB.

Geekbench doesn't reflect real-world performance; however, it's an interesting synthetic that helps demonstrate the relative performance of dissimilar platforms. According to our results, the Exynos 5 Dual's two Cortex-A15 cores deliver 80%+ more performance than the dual-core Cortex-A9s in TI's OMAP 44xx SoCs, albeit operating 500 MHz faster.

The CPU-oriented subtest helps pin down the Exynos 5 Dual's advantage in floating-point-based math (enhanced by the -A15's ability to execute 128 bits at a time), though it trails Intel's Atom Z2760 in the integer component.

But where the SoC really shines is the memory score. Samsung supports LPDDR3, DDR3, and LPDDR2 memory, but we have to imagine the Nexus 10 is armed with 2 GB of 800 MT/s LPDDR3 on its twin 32-bit channels (up to 12.8 GB/s) to post such a commanding lead over the Atom Z2760, which offers up to 6.4 GB/s of throughput via two channels of LPDDR2-800.

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  • joytech22
    The Nexus 10 is one of the most powerful Android devices available, but why?

    A T604 can be configured up to what - 8 cores? The Nexus 10 has ONE and it performs just under a PVR 543MP4

    The CPU is absolutely monstrous, as is RAM Bandwidth, resolution etc..

    I often think to myself - Why aren't other manufacturers sticking specs like these into their own systems? Stick a T604MP4 in there and you've got performance numbers (mind you, numbers likely not real-world) close to 2.5x that of the fastest iPad in every single way (except battery.. Lol).

    As for CPU, Stick a 1.7GHz S4 Pro in there with 2GB of RAM and combine it with the same screen.
    The company that does that has my next purchase guaranteed.
  • killabanks
    as much as i love this tablet it needs a beefier gpu to handle that res just look what apple crammed in the ipad 4th gen
  • bit_user
    Why does the Color Temperature graph say "Higher is Better"? That's just wrong. The standard for accurate video reproduction is 6500 Kelvin.

    Values higher than that will result in the image having a blue bias. Values lower than that will result is the image appearing reddish. Of course, this also depends on the ambient light, which will influence how the image is perceived. But 6.5k Kelvin was supposedly chosen to match natural daylight.
  • neon neophyte
    i disagree completely about the screen analysis. it is most obvious on the picture of the blue flower. with the nexus 10 i can see all the detail in the pedals, the ipad is over saturated and has lost its detail.
  • killerclick
    There was an article a while ago that showcased Tom's Hardware writers and various devices they use. Almost all of them had an iPad or a Macbook or both.

    Just sayin'...

    Link is http://www.tomshardware.com/picturestory/605-toms-hardware-editors.html
  • bit_user
    neon neophytei disagree completely about the screen analysis. it is most obvious on the picture of the blue flower. with the nexus 10 i can see all the detail in the pedals, the ipad is over saturated and has lost its detail.
    Well, as they didn't say what camera they used or how it was configured, you have to assume they didn't disable AWB and that they used autofocus (which can have unpredictable results, when photographing a screen). Even if they avoided those two pitfalls, we don't know anything about the camera's spectral response function. Alone, that would be enough to disqualify any such comparison. Add to that the effects of your display device (I'll bet it's never been calibrated), and you should see that you really can't trust how these images show the respective screens.

    They also used images that are so vivid and almost artificial that it's sometimes hard to tell which display is reproducing the images more faithfully.
  • neon neophyte
    eh, they said in the article that we could see the difference in the pictures. then they went on to say those pictures reflected that the ipad was better.

    i disagree completely.
  • bit_user
    neon neophyteeh, they said in the article that we could see the difference in the pictures. then they went on to say those pictures reflected that the ipad was better.i disagree completely.
    I'm not disagreeing with you. I'm just pointing out that their methodology seems badly flawed.

    If they want to learn how to write better video reviews, Tom's could do worse than to check out David Katzmaier's reviews, on CNet.
  • senshu
    neon neophyteeh, they said in the article that we could see the difference in the pictures. then they went on to say those pictures reflected that the ipad was better.i disagree completely.

    You're nowhere close to alone on this.
  • And if compared with Ipad 4 gen CPU & GPU? :)
  • Marcus52
    I don't think the pictures we are seeing in this review reflect clearly on either screen.

    That being said, I do see what both sides are talking about. The yellows are clearly better on the iPad, but it does appear to have some over-saturation (btw over-saturation means the colors bleed into each other, not that they are brighter or more vivid than natural) that you can see in a couple of flower photos. My question would be though - is what I'm seeing color bleed or a poorly set contrast/brightness, or related to the cameras?

    The pictures of the barn look better on the iPad to me. The pictures of the adjacent butterfly look better on the iPad in detail and color. The Nexus - well, I don't know what those butterflies look like in real life, but the yellow flowers are atrociously colored. They are practically orange. Same with the yellow flowers on down the page, though they are the worst in the butterfly picture.

    Blues seem to be the other way around in some of these pictures, but not in terms of color, in terms of detail. I'm thinking the blues may actually be over-saturated in the true sense of the word, but I have to wonder about the other contributions to the picture unrelated to screen quality - were they adjusted right? What about the camera? What about the reproduction process that puts them in the article?

    Is my screen going to see these images differently than someone else's?

    I don't think we as readers can really tell what's going on here. I will say one thing, yellow color on screens is one of my "pet peeves" so I know which screen I like better, and that's the iPad. I'm sick of orang-ish yellows, I tell you! Sick of them! :D
  • JJ1217
    Damn, didn't read the article (didn't have time), but 2560 x 1600 on a 10 inch screen will have a huge PPI.
  • RealityClash
    I really don't understand what they have against this tablet?
    Decent battery life, powerful processor, $100 cheaper than an iPad, great display (colour difference between this and the iPad would be unnoticeable in most cases unless they were be readily compared next to each other). Are you guys at Tom's all just Apple fanboys or something?
  • i don't know about you, but i'm not sure where the difference and superiority of the iPad screen over the Nexus one is painfully obvious in their samples

    if anything, the bleeding and saturation (i hate to call that "rich and vivid") of the colors and lost details in that last picture of the ipad screen is rather harsh
  • pacomac
    Why was the 4th generation iPad not included in these tests since its light years ahead of the iPad 3rd generation. We all know that the Nexus 10 beats out other tablets on Geekbench due to CPU performance but struggles to run the display with its under par GPU. OpenGL benchmarks are a true indication of speed not Geekbench when it comes to extreme resolutions.
  • acku
    328798 said:
    Well, as they didn't say what camera they used or how it was configured, you have to assume they didn't disable AWB and that they used autofocus (which can have unpredictable results, when photographing a screen). Even if they avoided those two pitfalls, we don't know anything about the camera's spectral response function. Alone, that would be enough to disqualify any such comparison. Add to that the effects of your display device (I'll bet it's never been calibrated), and you should see that you really can't trust how these images show the respective screens. They also used images that are so vivid and almost artificial that it's sometimes hard to tell which display is reproducing the images more faithfully.


    We actually did disable autofocus and awb, all this was noted in our ipad mini review. All pictures were taken at a fixed f/stop and iso setting at the same distance. Second, you can't really calibrate tablet screens. This means we are testing out of box gamut performance.

    As for not being able to see the difference, Cambridge Color has some great information on color chemistry if you're not too familar.

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/color-space-conversion.htm
    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/soft-proofing.htm
    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/sRGB-AdobeRGB1998.htm

    A camera's spectral response, (we're talking point-and-shoot, slrs, dslrs circa 2007) and later all have a gamut response larger than that of monitors, even high performance gamut monitors. On the low end of the hierarchy, printers have a smaller gamut response.

    This means the inablity to see a difference is tied directly to the monitor you own. If you own a TN-based display, you're very likely going to see less of a difference in these pictures than someone rocking a wide-gamut IPS. That's simply the way the tech is. That's why professional photographs are so picky about the monitors they use. The compression of the picture's gamut clips out highlights, midtones, and shadows on a lower-end LCD.

    The difference is definitely there. Your ability to see them is going to be dictated by your hardware.
  • acku
    326042 said:
    There was an article a while ago that showcased Tom's Hardware writers and various devices they use. Almost all of them had an iPad or a Macbook or both. Just sayin'... Link is http://www.tomshardware.com/picturestory/605-toms-hardware-editors.html


    I'm camera shy and wasn't featured in that article. Second, those that owned an Apple product generally were my overseas colleagues and news team. Nothing wrong with that, just say'in. :)

    Finally, I don't know why there's this perception that we're being harsh on Google. To the contrary, we gave the Nexus 7 an Editor's Choice award. It was the first time we that award to a tablet - ANY tablet. We've seen tons of tablets, but that was the first one that really impressed us.

    Simply put, the Nexus 10" is not the 10" equivalent to the Nexus 7. The latter was simply amazing. It was powerful. It was light. It had a beautiful display. Better yet it was cheap. In the past, anything at the $200 price point had some sort of shortcoming. Not so with the Nexus 7. That's what made it a game changer. Considering that the Nexus 7 came out first, we expected the larger 10" brother to deliver similar performance, right? I don't think that's an unreasonable expectation. I'm not sayin that it's a terrible tablet, but it's clearly not as "game changing" "wow that's awesome" as the Nexus 7 was.

    Cheers,
    Andrew Ku
    Tom's Hardware
  • acku
    328798 said:
    Why does the Color Temperature graph say "Higher is Better"? That's just wrong. The standard for accurate video reproduction is 6500 Kelvin. Values higher than that will result in the image having a blue bias. Values lower than that will result is the image appearing reddish. Of course, this also depends on the ambient light, which will influence how the image is perceived. But 6.5k Kelvin was supposedly chosen to match natural daylight.


    This was a typo that occurred during the transition to our new charting system.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ativ-smart-pc-500t-windows-8-atom,3360-10.html

    We have to sort the values simply for ease of reading. When we created the new chart format, the legend was incorrectly labeled. Fix'ed.

    Cheers,
    Andrew Ku
    Tom's Hardware
  • sanilmahambre
    Got three words for you fella

    Bigger!

    Slimmer!

    Better!
  • PreferLinux
    ackuWe actually did disable autofocus and awb, all this was noted in our ipad mini review. All pictures were taken at a fixed f/stop and iso setting at the same distance. Second, you can't really calibrate tablet screens. This means we are testing out of box gamut performance. As for not being able to see the difference, Cambridge Color has some great information on color chemistry if you're not too familar.http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/t [...] ersion.htmhttp://www.cambridgeincolour.com/t [...] oofing.htmhttp://www.cambridgeincolour.com/t [...] GB1998.htmA camera's spectral response, (we're talking point-and-shoot, slrs, dslrs circa 2007) and later all have a gamut response larger than that of monitors, even high performance gamut monitors. On the low end of the hierarchy, printers have a smaller gamut response. This means the inablity to see a difference is tied directly to the monitor you own. If you own a TN-based display, you're very likely going to see less of a difference in these pictures than someone rocking a wide-gamut IPS. That's simply the way the tech is. That's why professional photographs are so picky about the monitors they use. The compression of the picture's gamut clips out highlights, midtones, and shadows on a lower-end LCD. The difference is definitely there. Your ability to see them is going to be dictated by your hardware.

    What I would like to see is the pictures that were displayed on the tablets also in the article so you can see the picture on your own screen for comparison purposes. Because simply comparing the two doesn't say much – what we should be looking for is how it compares to the real thing, not how they compare to each other. How they compare to each other is irrelevant. What is actually wanted is how the comparison to the real compares with each other.
  • alidan
    others mentioned it, but the picutres are flawed,
    i have little doubt the ipad would look better, but in those picutres the nexus looks better, because i can see more detail, the ipad looks over saturated.
  • acku
    433097 said:
    What I would like to see is the pictures that were displayed on the tablets also in the article so you can see the picture on your own screen for comparison purposes. Because simply comparing the two doesn't say much – what we should be looking for is how it compares to the real thing, not how they compare to each other. How they compare to each other is irrelevant. What is actually wanted is how the comparison to the real compares with each other.


    But there are several caveats with that, the biggest being the gamut of your monitor. Say for example you had a monitor with a gamut of 40% adobe rgb1998. You would see a very small difference with two pictures. If you looked at the supplied pictures, it simply wouldn't help much. It's not the real comparison. The real comparison would be the actual live scene, which we can't supply to everyone.

    The reason is because of color management. You're system is clipping out of gamut colors (using relative colorimetric or perceptual rendering intent.) The method that we chose preserves a proportionate difference between the two gamuts because the colors are being clipped out the same for a given computer system. While this means not everyone is going to view the same thing, it the best way we could produce a requested subjective analysis in a reproducible format.
  • Chetou
    I also completely disagree with your display analysis and conclusion. Top ones are clearly better in this direct comparison. iPad has way oversaturated and unrealistic colors and less detail. You would also probably find those store LCDs in over the top demo mode having better picture than a properly calibrated plasma.

    And this was you main reason for giving it a lower score. Really?!
  • why results are compared with 3rd generation iPad? I'm not an Apple fanboy but I know 4th generation ipad is much faster than 3rd generation both in cpu and gpu... about twice as fast.
    Nexus 10 is the best android tablet, but there's still very much to do to reach the best performances.