System Performance

Following our more in-depth review of the SoCs powering the S21 family, today we’re focusing more on the general system performance and user experience. In many instances, this aspect of a device is defined by the software making good use of the available hardware capabilities more than the actual hardware itself.

PCMark Work 2.0 - Web Browsing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Writing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Photo Editing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Data Manipulation PCMark Work 2.0 - Performance

In the PCMark results, both the Exynos and Snapdragon S21 Ultras showcase massively impressive results. While the Snapdragon 888 variant of the S21 isn’t all that much of a massive upgrade compared to the Snapdragon 865 powered S20 series phones, the new Exynos 2100 S21’s are very much leaving its predecessors far behind.

WebXPRT 3 - OS WebView

Speedometer 2.0 - OS WebView

JetStream 2 - OS Webview

The web-browsing tests are showcasing similar results, with the Snapdragon S21’s showcasing smaller generational boosts, while the Exynos S21 sees massive performance uplifts.

General Performance - Outstanding

In general, the performance of the new Galaxy S21 series this year is nothing short of outstanding. In terms of software optimisations and general responsiveness of the devices, they’re practically perfect, and essentially the way the phones now behave is as optimal as can be achieved whilst still remaining reasonable with every-day power efficiency.

While the 120Hz mode last year came at a great cost in power efficiency, and I even personally opted to use 60Hz in everyday usage because of that, the new adaptive refresh rate displays on the S21 series, particularly the superior implementation on the S21 Ultra, means that most people will be able to enjoy this highly user-experience augmenting feature without any major drawbacks this year.

Introduction & Design GPU Performance
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  • TwoMetreBill - Monday, February 22, 2021 - link

    Until we can see the results of the raw images processed in something like Lightroom, we won't really know what we can get from this system. The smaller the sensor, as a general rule, the greater the improvement from raw shooting. But as far as I can tell, nobody has published a raw sample library and I search every day.
  • s.yu - Wednesday, February 24, 2021 - link

    Just get a compatible version of Gcam running. With SD Samsung it's the easiest to find.
  • tkSteveFOX - Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - link

    Again, Huawei's Kirin 9000 knocks it out of the park. A better chip all-round.
    Samsung's 5nm is not even as good or roughly on par with TSMCs 7nm.
    Getting an SD870 looks like a better deal this year, but if Huawei manage to produce a $800 Kirin 9000 device that would be the best of the best.
    I am amazed how their massive GPU doesn't throttle as much as both Adreno 660 and MP14 in the E2100.
  • iphonebestgamephone - Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - link

    Maybe being slow and wide is the best?
  • s.yu - Wednesday, February 24, 2021 - link

    The guy wasn't paying attention. The Adreno throttled far more than it was supposed to with the whole SoC settling down at 3W when it should have nearly 5W to use. And in several benchmarks the Kirin wasn't that fast either, so he's completely confused.
    And yes slow and wide has always been better but that only applies to the Mali comparison.
  • iphonebestgamephone - Thursday, February 25, 2021 - link

    Yeah the sd samsung seems to throttle too much, while the mi 11 doesnt want to throttle.
  • yeeeeman - Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - link

    underwhelming. on the system performance page we can clearly see the s20 ultra w/ sd 865 being barely slower and you say the performance is outstanding. Sure, it is outstanding, but it isn't an improvement over the last gen. Battery life, again, similar. the only improvement is the gpu and the display efficiency.
  • s.yu - Wednesday, February 24, 2021 - link

    I have to agree.
  • flyingpants265 - Friday, February 26, 2021 - link

    Slower? The speed is not going to matter for 99% of users so I'm not sure what you're talking about there. Who cares?

    The Android OS and software suck so bad. We've had 14 generations of laggy phones now..
  • iphonebestgamephone - Saturday, February 27, 2021 - link

    ”The Android OS and software suck so bad. We've had 14 generations of laggy phones now..”

    So what they care about is lag? Half a second of stutter is what they care more about, than the general speed?

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