Intel’s “Medfield” Mobile Chip Gets Benchmarked – Still Consuming Too Much Power

Intel’s Medfield chip has been making the rounds as they prepare it for prime time. Last week we got a glimpse of an Android prototype with the Medfield chip thanks to Technology Review. While their hands on provided us with a few adjectives such as “fast” and “smooth,” we weren’t provided with any real performance specs — that is, until now. VR-Zone got a sneak peek at just how well Intel’s first true SoC performs, and how it compares to its competition.

All tests were done using a x86 processing core operating at 1.6GHz inside of a “Medfield tablet” running Honeycomb (Android 3.x). Other hardware specs included:

  • – 1GB LP-DDR2
  • – WLAN/Bluetooth/FM Radio chip of unnamed manufacturer
  • – 10.1″ 1280×800 resolution screen
  • – eMMC/micro-SD card for removable storage

When put to the test, the Medfield 1.6GHz scored around 10,500 in Caffeinemark 3 while NVIDIA’s Tegra 2 scored around 7500, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon MSM8260 scored 8000, and Samsung’s Exynos scoring 8500. As you can see, Intel’s Medfield chip held its performance edge when put up against chips currently in the market, but it’s unknown how well it will compare to more recent chips like the Tegra 3, or upcoming chips like Qualcomm’s S4 series.

Although the Medfield chip performed well, it still suffered from high power consumption. The prototype version consumed 2.6W while idle and 3.6W while watching video at 720p in Adobe Flash format. These numbers were well above Intel’s target projections of 2W idle and 2.6W video playback, which means Intel has some more work to do before trying their hand at the competition. Let’s just hope they don’t take too much time and miss the bus, as we all know how fast mobile tech advances in today’s market.

I’m sure we’ll be seeing more from the Medfield chip as we approach CES, so stay tuned for more sneak peeks and hands on with Intel’s first true SoC for mobile devices.