GPU Performance

GPU performance of the Pixel 3 should be relatively non-surprising for the most part – again we see the Snapdragon 845 at play and its Adreno 630 GPU should be performing excellently. This year the only real differences between devices was how vendors decided to set up their thermal throttling mechanisms and how the hardware itself is able to dissipate sufficient heat – as the SoC’s peak performance lies above the sustainable thermal envelope of a given device.

3DMark Sling Shot 3.1 Extreme Unlimited - Physics

In the 3DMark Physics test, the Pixel 3 performs as expected in peak performance, however we see a more than usual decline is sustained performance compared to other Snapdragon 845 phones. Here it is possible Google has more strict thermal limits on the CPU.

3DMark Sling Shot 3.1 Extreme Unlimited - Graphics

The graphics results on 3DMark are more in line with other S845 devices, still the small Pixel 3 does end up slightly lower in performance. It’s notable that the Pixel 3 here ends up with a lower sustained performance score as the Pixel 2 family – showcasing the worst-case scenario for the SoC.

GFXBench Aztec Ruins - High - Vulkan/Metal - Off-screen

GFXBench Aztec Ruins - Normal - Vulkan/Metal - Off-screen

In the new Aztec benchmark, the new GPU architecture does help quite a bit in terms of differentiating itself from last year’s Pixels, however still the Pixel 3 ends up at the lower end of S845 phones in terms of the sustained performance.

GFXBench Manhattan 3.1 Off-screen GFXBench T-Rex 2.7 Off-screen

Finally in Manhattan and T-Rex, the Pixel 3 ends up in the same ballpark range as last year’s Pixels – again a worst-case scenario for the new SoC.

Among Android devices the Pixel 3 doesn’t stand out too much from the competition, however is still going to be able to perform very well. One has to keep in mind GPU and gaming performance is very much tied to the hardware capabilities, and in this regard we’ll see major jumps with the next generation GPUs.

System Performance Display Measurement
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  • Andrei Frumusanu - Monday, November 5, 2018 - link

    I can't replicate your issue in any browser. Sounds really odd.
  • s.yu - Thursday, November 15, 2018 - link

    Oh I had the exact same problem, but only on page 7, by page 8 it's gone but I didn't go back to check again.
  • AceMcLoud - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - link

    Still slower than my old iPhone 7. Amazing.
  • Nikophin - Thursday, November 8, 2018 - link

    "Currently the silicon, as well as Google using the most up-to-date version of Qualcomm’s scheduler, make this the snappiest and fastest device on the market."

    Lower scores on some benchmarks on different OSs, does not mean "slower", just so you know.
  • evan89 - Wednesday, November 7, 2018 - link

    I like the design of new Google pixel 3 more than its predecessor. Judging by the specifications, it becomes clear that this will be the flagship smartphone, so we can expect the cost of this phone to be too high in many countries. I would like to protest, namely to do stress testing for similar games Really looking forward to when it appears in sales.
  • Himanshu 011 - Friday, November 9, 2018 - link

    Display specifications are wrong it should be Pixel 3xl have 6.3" Samsungs Amoled not LG's P-OLED and Pixel 3 have 5.5" lg's p-Oled not Samsung's Amoled

    As found by ifixit guys
  • darkich - Friday, November 9, 2018 - link

    Just have to say you are the greatest smartphone expert and authority on Earth, Andrei.
    Astonishing review that puts others of this kind to shame.
  • RedBeardMcGee - Friday, November 9, 2018 - link

    I wish you would test speaker distortion. I am hearing lots of distortion even at the lowest listening levels with my pixel 3xl.
  • santz - Sunday, November 11, 2018 - link

    that was an awesome read. superb hard work on the photos evaluation.
  • Ashan360 - Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - link

    I almost want other major reviewers to acknowledge and comment on this review, since it brings up a lot of issues and disparities with the main conclusions of many other big review sites. I find this to be a fresh and honest look at what the product is rather than a drinking the cool aid product promotion. Google still has a lot of work to do to catch up to Samsung and Apple hardware, but they're pricing like they don't. The low light photo feature is really neat, but I think it's far more limited than many people are imagining. You can't capture any motion in the frame when pushing these limits, so it's only for dark landscapes. And close up still life can be captured with a flash, so while it may be a vast improvement in a certain situation, that situation is going to likely be a small fraction of the pictures we generally want to take. I feel like people are getting overly worked up by this like it's going to revolutionize photography (computational photography in general, sure; this specific feature? not so much).

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