GLBenchmark 2.0

GLBenchmark 2.0—as its name implies—tests OpenGL ES 2.0 performance on compatible devices. The suite includes two long benchmarking scenarios with a demanding combination of OpenGL ES 2.0 effects - texture based and direct lighting, bump, environment, and radiance mapping, soft shadows, vertex shader based skinning, level of detail support, multi-pass deferred rendering, noise textures, and ETC1 texture compression.

GLBenchmark 2.0 is the best example of an even remotely current 3D game running on this class of hardware—and even then this is a stretch. If you want an idea of how the PowerVR SGX 543MP2 stacks up to the competition however, GLBenchmark 2.0 is probably going to be our best bet (at least until we get Epic to finally release an Unreal Engine benchmark).

GLBenchmark 2.0 Egypt

Without AA, the Egypt test runs at 5.4x the frame rate of the original iPad. It's even 3.7x the speed of the Tegra 2 in the Xoom running at 1280 x 800 (granted that's an iOS vs. Android comparison as well).

GLBenchmark 2.0 Egypt - FSAA

With AA enabled the iPad 2 advantage grows to 7x. In a game with the complexity of the Egypt test the original iPad wouldn't be remotely playable while the iPad 2 could run it smoothly.

The Pro test is a little more reasonable, showing a 3 - 4x increase in performance compared to the original iPad:

GLBenchmark 2.0 PRO

GLBenchmark 2.0 PRO - FSAA

While we weren't able to reach the 9x figure claimed by Apple (I'm not sure that you'll ever see 9x running real game code), a range of 3 - 7x in GLBenchmark 2.0 is more reasonable. In practice I'd expect something less than 5x but that's nothing to complain about. We'll be doing power analysis over the weekend so expect more detail in our full review.

Putting the PowerVR SGX 543MP2 to Use: Infinity Blade

As we pointed out in our iPad 2 Preview, at least one developer already picked up on the amount of extra GPU horsepower in the new iPad 2. Epic put out an updated version of Infinity Blade with support for the iPad 2. Run it on an iPad and you'll get the same old Infinity Blade, but run it on an iPad 2 and you'll get more detail, higher resolution textures and anti-aliasing.

Remember that iPad and iPhone devices are more closed than your PC. There's no adjusting detail settings or resolution, so the target frame rate is usually what's fixed. Developers are simply able to deliver a better looking experience at roughly the same frame rate with upgraded hardware. In the case of Infinity Blade, load times are reduced thanks to the Cortex A9 CPU cores and there is some improvement in frame rate but the biggest impact comes from the improved visuals.

Below is the comparison beween Infinity Blade on the iPad and iPad 2 we ran in this morning's preview:

Mouse over to see Infinity Blade on the iPad 2

There's far more detail in the character models as well as the environment. Lighting looks improved and the AA is definitely appreciated.

Mouse over to see Infinity Blade on the iPad 2

The gallery below has a bunch of side by side shots showing the improvements made to Infinity Blade for the iPad 2 vs. what you get when you run the game on a first generation iPad.

To Be Concluded...

We're still hard at work on our full iPad 2 review. We've got no less than four units running through battery life tests right now and there's still more to talk about in the review. We'll keep you posted, thanks for reading!

Benchmarking the PowerVR SGX543MP2
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  • Sherpak - Wednesday, March 16, 2011 - link

    You are comparing it to a first gen iPad, not an iPad 2
  • Ramshambo2001 - Thursday, March 17, 2011 - link

    Wholly Crap I will be able to play Angry Birds at like 2200 FPS!!!!!
  • giridhart - Friday, March 18, 2011 - link

    With Exynos platform reference design.
  • samirsshah - Sunday, March 20, 2011 - link

    and nothing less...
  • androideatsapples - Tuesday, May 17, 2011 - link

    ok this is like comparing ferrarie enzo to a mitsubishi lancer evo or like comparing a sport atv to a sport utility atv,.... sure look at the ferrari .. itll kill the lancer in a race but overall mitsubishi is better. better for overall situations, you dont see someone driving an enzo on rough roads.... its been built for a specific use....

    sport quad = built for speed cant go everywhere with it. Sure its fun but you dont have versatily of a sport utlity.. sport utility you can do everything a sport quad can and more!

    where am i going with this? the ferrari enzo and the sport quad are just like the ipads.... they do good in one field.... Xoom is good at everything. The reason apple rates so high... it has nothing with high cpu to run, no bonus features or anything. Comparing Apple os to honeycomb phones are jokes!

    The Honeycomb might rate lower but it is much better than Apple, much more versatile!( sport utility / lancer evo)

    Xoom kills ipad 2 ipad = gaming Xoom = EVERYTHING
  • fuzzy1969 - Friday, August 5, 2011 - link

    its not all about triangles and fill rates, nvidias background is with desktop gfx cards. anti alaising, shadows etc and extra fx i suspect the powervr would struggle with stuff like that (cpu work) lets compare some tegra 2 optimised stuff with the powervr cpu/gpu working overtime. from what ive seen the ipad2 runs well but the tegra 2 games have more of a destop feel.
  • fuzzy1969 - Saturday, August 6, 2011 - link

    im glad powervr are doing it again but ive got a sneaky feeling that the tegra 2 been based on a desktop gpu rather than just a polygon shifter has a few tricks up its sleeve and it seems they might be the SoC of choice for android (which is a shame cos samsungs exynos beats the a5 in polygon shifting). Demo's of the tegra3 are going around and it look impressive with dynamic lighting and stuff.
  • ninjamik - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    so what earlier posts mentioned earlier about bias testing was correct.

    if you look over at pc mag,2817,2381767,00.asp

    a more thorough test of the tegra 2 and A5&4 was done proving the moterola xoom (tegra 2)

    creamed the Ipad2 (a5) in two out of 3 tests. admittedly Ipad2 it did win this one!!!

    so which is better now?

    and android also just announced wireless HD video streaming to any tv with a hdmi dongle,

    the partys definitely heating up!
  • ninjamik - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    oh and excuse the second earlier and correct Motorola! it is 4am ;)

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