Qualcomm’s latest chip for budget smartphones brings a 10% boost in CPU performance and new AI-enhanced photography features. The new Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 processor also brings support for LPDDR5x memory, UFS 3.1 storage, and it’s the first Snapdragon 4-series chip manufactured on a 4nm process.

But the new processor isn’t necessarily an upgrade over last year’s Gen 1 chip in every respect.

West Lake Night Scene, Hangzhou, China; Shutterstock ID 1562794810; purchase_order: -; job: -; client: -; other: –

Some specs remain the same: for example both chips top out at WiFi 5 speeds, which seems like an odd move at a time when not only is WiFi 6 standard, but WiFi 7 is starting to roll out.

And other specs actually look like slight downgrades. For example the Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 had a Qualcomm Spectra triple ISP that enabled image capture from up to three cameras at once, while the newer Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 has a double ISP with support for up to two cameras.

Qualcomm says “multi camera temporal filtering” or MCTF is built into the hardware for the first time in a Snapdragon 4-series chip though, which should enable better noise reduction in photos and videos.

Other AI-enhanced features should aid in low-light photography, auto-focus, and depth sensing, as well as electronic image stabilization and noise reduction for photo and video.

Like last year’s chip, the new Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 supports FHD+ displays with refresh rates up to 120 Hz, Qualcomm Quick Charge 4+ fast charging technology, and 4G LTE and 5G sub-6 GHz connections. The new chip is also the first in the Snapdragon 4 series to support 3GPP Release 16 (which is a few years old at this point, but still an upgrade, I guess).

Here’s a run-down of some key specs, and how they stack up against last year’s chip:

Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 (SM4450)Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 (SM4375)
CPU Cores 2 x Kryo @ 2.2 GHz
6 x Kryo efficiency cores @ 2 GHz
2 x ARM Cortex-A78 @ 2 GHz
6 x ARM Cortex-A55 @ 1.8 GHz
GraphicsAdreno (unspecified)
OpenGL ES 3.2, OpenCL 2.0, Vulkan 1.1
Hardware-accelerated H.265 and VP9
Adreno (unspecified)
OpenGL ES 3.2, OpenCL 2.0, Vulkan 1.1
Hardware-accelerated H.265 and VP9
ISPSpectra (Dual 12-bit ISP)

  • 108MP single-camera or 32MP with zero shutter lag
  • 16MP + 16MP dual camera (with ZSL)
  • 1080p single-video capture @ 60 fps
  • 1080p dual-video capture @ 30 FPS
  • 720p slow-motion capture @ 120 FPS
Spectra (Triple 12-bit ISP)

  • 108MP single-camera or 32MP with zero shutter lag
  • 25MP + 13MP dual camera (with ZSL)
  • 13MP + 13MP + 13MP triple camera (with ZSL)
  • 1080p single-video capture @ 60 fps
  • 1080p dual-video capture @ 30 FPS
  • 1080p single-video capture @ 60 fps
  • 720 triple-video capture @ 30 FPS
  • 720p slow-motion capture @ 120 FPS
MemoryLPDDR5x-3200
LPDDR4x-2133
LPDDR4x-2133
StorageUFS 3.1eMMC 5.1
UFS 2.2
ModemSnapdragon X61
4G LTE / 5G sub-6 GHz
First in series with 3GPP Release 16 5G
Snapdragon X51
4G LTE / 5G sub-6 GHz
WiFi & BTWiFi 5
BT 5.1
WiFi 5
BT 5.2
USBUSB 3.2 Type-CUSB 3.1 Type-C
Node4nmTSMC 6nm

Qualcomm says devices with the Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 processor should begin shipping in the second half of 2023, with some of the first phones to use the chip coming from Chinese companies including Redmi and Vivo.

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