Lenovo Project Limitless 5G Laptop and Snapdragon 8cx Benchmarks

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Last December, Qualcomm unveiled Snapdragon 8cx processor for laptops, or as the company calls them “always-on always connected mobile PCs”. Only 4G LTE was mentioned at the time, but a few months later it was confirmed that the processor would find its way into 5G always-connected mobile PCs.

Qualcomm made two main announcements at Computex 2019 about their new Arm processor for laptops. First, they announced a partnership with Lenovo for Project Limitless, the first 5G PC powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform, and the company released some benchmarks to demonstrate the high performance and long battery life of their solution.

Lenovo Project Limitless 5G Laptop

Lenovo Project Limitless 5G Laptop

The press release did not reveal that much information, but we do know Project Limitless features Qualcomm Snapdragon 8C 5G compute platform with Snapdragon X55 5G modem enabling download speed of up to 2.5 Gbps, and it will be the first 5G laptop available once it becomes available in early 2020. One of the benefits of 5G is supposed to be remote storage since network connectivity may be even faster than local storage, and 4K and 8K video streaming will benefit from the high-speed data transfer rates, as well as AR and VR applications, and gaming thanks to lower latency.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx Benchmarks

Qualcomm also has worked with UL (previously Futuremark) to create new PCMARK 10 benchmarks, which they ran on Snapdragon 8cx reference laptop, and an Intel Core i5-8250U laptop.

Specifications of the two systems:

DUT Unnamed competitor laptop Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx reference laptop
Processor Intel Core i5-8250U Kaby Lake-R (15 Watts TDP) Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx
RAM 8GB RAM
Storage 256GB NVMe Storage
Display 2K resolution display (2048×1080) FHD resolution display (1920×1080)
Battery 49Whr battery
OS Windows 10 OS version: 1809 Windows 10 OS version: 1903

The two systems are pretty similar, but the Intel laptop may be slightly hurt in benchmarks involving graphics due to its larger display. However, it’s just a few more pixels, so the hit should be minimal.

The two new benchmarks are PCMark10 Application test for real-life application performance (Excel, PowerPoint, Word, Microsoft Edge) and PCMark10 Battery Life Profile test which estimates battery life.

Snapdragon 8cx PCMark 10 Application benchmark
Click to Enlarge

According to PCMark 10 Application benchmark results, both systems have pretty much equivalent real-life performance with a small advantage for the Snapdragon 8cx processor, which appears to work quite fast in Word and Edge web browser.

Snapdragon 8cx Battery Life PCMark 10
Click to Enlarge

However, the Snapdragon 8cx reference laptop achieves this level of performance with much higher efficiency, since the laptop can last many more hours on a single charge compared to the Intel laptop both of which have the same battery capacity.

Snapdragon 8cx GPU benchmarks
Click to Enlarge

They also ran Night Raid graphics benchmarks on both systems, and the Adreno 680 GPU found in the Snapdragon processor performs well against the Intel UHD Graphics 620 delivering higher scores and frames per second.

Qualcomm also released a few video comparing Snapdragon 8cx laptop performance to an “unnamed competitor” which may be the same Core i5-8250U laptop listed above.

Via XDA Developers

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theguyuk
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theguyuk

Well the video already shows they fail on colour calibration, the whites are not true and have a colour tinge. Are not true white.

Not sure why you want a always connected terminal, tracking you, observing you.

blu
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blu

In contrast to smart^H^H other always-connected terminals, this one can actually be used for productivity, me thinks.

theguyuk
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theguyuk

Just watched a video at Engadget, they got a small hands on. The device there had around 16GB ram. Colour on screen was not as badly tinged. They had Photoshop cc running, while running other tasks, why?
Reviewer found it chunky, shallow keyboard travel, but it is not the end product yet.

Laurent
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Laurent

That looks quite nice, but I’ll wait for results from an independent source.

I wonder what the price will be and if Linux can be installed.

blu
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blu
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Miquel Mayol

I would love to read Lignux benchmarks with mitigations=off and auto in the Intel case. Also, wine vs MS WOS benchmarks in both cases too.

And of course, read that you can purchase this device with any Lignux pre-installed

Dim
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Dim

I like the design quality of my IBM Thinkpad T60. After the Chinese purchased Thinkpad series in my opinion the quality quite decreased. Those Chinese seem to focus on performance, but in most of the cases the actual product quality is horrible.
Unfortunately the video performance of my IBM is not so good, does anyone knows if it can be improved via USB Neural Compute stick etc. ?

Laurent
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Laurent

I have a Lenovo T480s and I find it quite good, but I never owned an IBM Thinkpad. The only letdown is the trackpad that I find useless but the only trackpad I find usable is the one from Apple MBP.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

> the only trackpad I find usable is the one from Apple MBP

Yep.

Wrt Linux on these things I would watch https://github.com/aarch64-laptops/build for progress.

NicoD
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I still don’t know what to think of Windows running on ARM.
I’d rather have a PineBook Pro and put a bigger battery into it. No need for windows.
More than enough power for me, certainly if it’ll run Armbian well.

gizmoduck32
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gizmoduck32

Would be great to see some Windows 10 handheld UMPCs with ARM and built-in 4G LTE/5G mobile broadband at some point.

Gaetano
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Gaetano

My two bucks: if they costs the same, and if they have the same autonomy and horsepower … I prefer to have x86 compatibility!