What you need to know
- MediaTek announced the new Dimensity 8200 chip, designed for "premium 5G smartphones," on Wednesday.
- The announcement comes one month after MediaTek revealed the Dimensity 9200, another flagship chip with slightly better performance.
- The Dimensity 8200 uses four Cortex-A78 cores and four Cortex-A55 cores, and supports 120Hz WQHD+ and 180Hz Full HD+ displays.
Hot on the heels of its Dimensity 9200 flagship chip, MediaTek has followed up with the chip that more 2023 smartphone buyers are likely to use: the Dimensity 8200.
MediaTek promises that its new 8200 chip will "offer flagship-level experiences" at a "more accessible price point" than the 9200. It also suggests the SoC will "enhance the gaming experience" for premium mid-range phones or lower-tier flagships, while premium phones will use the Dimensity 9200 instead.
This TSMC 4nm chip looks fairly similar to last year's flagship MediaTek chip, the Dimensity 9000. Both have an eight-core CPU, 3GPP Release-16 5G, and support for 120Hz QHD displays and Wi-FI 6E. The Dimensity 8200's camera software is near-identical, offering the same 320MP camera support but only offering dual exposure per second instead of triple exposure.
Even its APU 580 offers near-identical AI processing to the 9000's APU 590. And the Mali-G610 graphics engine has just one shader core less than the 9000's Mali-G710 GPU. In other words, this chip will give you a 2022 flagship-quality performance across the board, but at a more reasonable price, in 2023.
Unlike most "flagship" chips, the Dimensity 8200 doesn't use a Cortex-X chip, relying solely on the Cortex-A78 and Cortex-A55 — the same cores found in the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 and Exynos 2100. What intrigues us is that MediaTek clocked one A78 at 3.1GHz and the other three at 3.0GHz, and the four A55s at 2GHz — much higher than past phones using these same cores.
So it's fair to assume the Dimensity 8200 will outperform your expectations of its last-gen cores. We'll have to wait and see for ourselves, but MediaTek says devices using the 8200 will launch "in the global market starting in December 2022," so we shouldn't have to wait long.
Perhaps the only unfortunate aspect of the Dimensity 8200's similarity to last year's chip is that it only supports sub-6 5G, with no mmWave support. MediaTek needs to pander to Verizon to make inroads in the North American market, which explains why the newer Dimensity 9200 added mmWave. As for the Dimensity 8200, you'll likely only see it used in Europe and Asia.
With the Dimensity 9200, MediaTek unveiled hardware that could deliver next-gen upgrades like hardware-based ray tracing, Wi-Fi 7, or 144Hz QHD displays, as well as mmWave 5G support. While that all sounds great, only the most expensive flagships will use the 9200; for everyone buying premium mid-range or lower-tier flagships in 2023, you're more likely to find the new Dimensity 8200 instead.
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Michael spent years freelancing on every tech topic under the sun before settling down on the real exciting stuff: virtual reality, fitness wearables, gaming, and how tech intersects with our world. He's a semi-reformed Apple-to-Android user who loves running, D&D, and Star Wars. Find him on Twitter at @Michael_L_Hicks.