Arm announces its new CPU core designs, alongside improved GPUs

Arm 2024 Update
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Arm is a British semiconductor company that almost has a monopoly in designing and architecture of the CPU. Qualcomm, MediaTek, Samsung, and even Apple license the company’s ISA (Instruction Set Architecture) designs for their CPUs. And Arm has just announced updates for 2024 which include the next generation of compute subsystem, CPU cores, and GPU.

Arm 2024 Update Overview

Compute Subsystem

Firstly, Arm announced the new Compute Subsystem (CSS) for client devices. It is the successor to last year’s Total Compute Solutions (TSC2023). While both these subsystems follow Armv9.2 architecture, this time around the company has made some tweaks.

Arm CSS for Client

The company says the latest CPU cluster is designed with the current AI innovation in mind. The CSS for Client follows the coveted 3nm fabrication process. Moreover, the 2024 update of the Arm compute subsystem consists of two latest prime cores, four new performance-efficient cores, and two updated energy-efficient cores. Furthermore, it is also coupled with the latest GPU with increased cores and a larger L2 cache.

As a result of these tweaks, upcoming chips based on CSS for Client will see an improved peak and graphics performance of 36% and 30% respectively. Likewise, talking of usage scenarios, web browsing will be 60% faster, apps will load in ⅔rd of the time, and bokeh processing in photos will be 1.24 times quicker.

[All the numbers are drawn in comparison to the TSC2023 CPU cluster]

CPU Cores

Along with the entire compute subsystem, Arm also updated its CPU cores for 2024. Herein the prime cores and performance-efficient cores are going into the next generation while the energy-efficient cores have only been refreshed.

Arm 2024 CPU Cores

Prime core

Previously codenamed “Blackhawk”, the latest prime core Cortex-X925 is the successor to the Cortex-X4. Its naming takes a side step from the expected Cortex-X5. However, we do get 36% single-threaded along with almost 50% AI performance boost over the last-gen core.

Performance-efficient core

Similar to the prime cores, the performance efficiency has also moved to the next generation. Arm calls the latest of its mid-tier cores the Cortex-A725 coming from the Cortex-A720. It offers 35% and 25% improvement in performance and power efficiency respectively. Furthermore, Arm designed these cores to handle larger workloads while maintaining a sustained performance during AI usage and gaming.

Energy-efficient core

Amongst the Arm 2024 updates, these cores get the other end of the stick. This isn’t to say that there isn’t anything new though. The refreshed Cortex-A520 receives 3nm physical implementation as well as 15% efficiency improvements over the ones featured in TCS2023.

GPU

Arm also updated its graphics department across the board for the year 2024. It introduced Immortalis-G925 for flagship phones, Mali-G725 for midranges, and Mali-G625 for smartwatches and entry-level phones. The former comes with 10 or more cores and ray-tracing capabilities. The middle one has six to nine cores, and the latter makes do with anywhere between single to five cores. In the meantime, they all follow the 5th Gen GPU architecture similar to the previous generation Immortalis-G720.

Arm 2024 GPUs

While the technical aspects are there, Arm says there are two main focus areas on these GPUs. Those are enabling immersive visual experiences to support the mobile gaming evolution, and accelerating AI-based experiences.

Anyway, the Immortalis-G925 is the leader of the bunch and shares a space in Arm’s latest compute subsystem. As such, it delivers up to 37% better fps, 36% faster AI performance, and up to 52% better raytracing, all while consuming less than a third of the power.

Arm 2024 Update Implementation

Arm announced its 2024 update on 29 May 2024. It will be only a matter of time before we start seeing the implementation of this new instruction set on actual chipsets. MediaTek and Samsung will definitely apply this architecture to their next high-end processors.

However, Qualcomm is likely parting ways with Arm from now on. The American foundry acquired NUVIA in 2021 and will be using their in-house CPU design — Oryon starting from Snapdragon 8 Gen 4.

Meanwhile, check out our Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 vs A17 Pro vs Dimensity 9300 comparison video: