System Performance

System performance of the Zenfone 8 should be quite good virtue of the new Snapdragon 888. On top of that, ASUS’ 120Hz mode and 240Hz touch input rate should result in extremely fluid and responsive experiences.

One thing I have to make note of here is ASUS’s refresh rate modes. By default, the phone comes in the “Auto” mode, which in my experience simply switches between 90 and 60Hz depending on the application. I’ve never actually seen 120Hz used by the phone anywhere in this mode, which is odd. Besides the Auto mode, you can also explicitly set the phone to 120Hz, 90Hz or 60Hz modes all the time. In PCMark and also many other generic applications, Auto mode will switch to 60Hz mode while browser activity will switch to 90Hz mode. I tested that, as well as the explicit 120Hz mode of the phone.

PCMark Work 2.0 - Web Browsing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Writing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Photo Editing 2.0 PCMark Work 2.0 - Data Manipulation PCMark Work 2.0 - Performance

In PCMark which is a good representation of overall device responsiveness, we see that the Zenfone 8 tracks rather very closely to the performance of the Snapdragon 865 powered Zenfone 7, depending on the refresh rate. What’s actually a bit weird is that at 60Hz, the ZF8 is actually a bit slower than the ZF7, a point which I’ll come back to in a bit.

Speedometer 2.0 - OS WebView (64b) JetStream 2 - OS Webview (64b)

In the browser benchmark, which we’ve lately started from a clean slate due to the new 64-bit browser deployments on Android in the last few months which improve performance compared to past results, we see that the Zenfone 8 tracks closely to the Snapdragon 888 powered Galaxy S21 Ultra, which is expected.

Overall Device Experience - 120Hz Good, Everything Else Bad

At the 120Hz setting, the Zenfone 8 performs extremely well as is as responsive as any other device in the market. What’s actually very strange and extremely concerning for the ZF8 is all the other operating modes, such as 90Hz and 60Hz. For some reason, beyond just a slower refresh rate, these modes have seemingly increased input lag as well as just overall sluggish feel for the device. The 60Hz mode in particular is quite horrible – it feels as if ASUS is also modulating the input touch response based on the refresh rate. Generally speaking, for the best experience, you want to keep the phone in 120Hz always mode and avoid the Auto as well as the lower refresh rate modes.

Introduction & Design GPU Performance


View All Comments

  • drajitshnew - Thursday, May 13, 2021 - link

    I do not understand -- they should be adding micro SD express. Reply
  • thejaredhuang - Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - link

    So I've seen the picture of the 4000mAh battery on 2 different sites, it looks like its easily replaceable once the back cover is off, Andrei do you have any info on how easy it is to remove the back cover? Reply
  • Unashamed_unoriginal_username_x86 - Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - link

    The paragraph on the last page starting with "As we always say" is duplicated Reply
  • Wereweeb - Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - link

    I actually quite like this one. Not gaudy, not cringy, not exaggerated, just an all-around solid and compact smartphone. The camera bump does look misaligned, and the chrome ring around the selfie cam is just one of the dumbest things I've ever seen; but otherwise, if I needed to daily carry a SD 888, this would be the phone I'd buy. Reply
  • Silver5urfer - Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - link

    No 3.5mm jack on the Flip and no SD slot on the both phones, bonus is get a hole in cheaper version. Well this is going to be a skip. Sony Xperia 1 Mark III is still the king on the smartphones right now, king in price also unfortunately.

    SD slot is not about storage, it's about having things right near your fingertips in the case of any emergency - Phone cracked / Phone busted up need to send to factory / Immediately need to get data to a PC / any private data. That is not possible with any solution, Cloud is not a solution at all as it needs constant Internet access and background data usage PLUS it's going to a blackbox security system putting all your data behind a ToS and Privacy Corporate Policy.
  • flyingpants265 - Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - link

    You'll never get what you need by relying on a private corporation - if you want actual utility, you'll need a government subsidy or non-profit or something. The population is never going to "learn to make the right choices", that day is never coming.

    What's needed is several different models of fully-featured Linux phones. Won't happen.
  • ozon - Friday, May 14, 2021 - link

    There's microSD slot on the 8 Flip. Saw it listed on the Asus page. Reply
  • nicolaim - Thursday, May 13, 2021 - link

    No wireless charging: lame. Reply
  • JfromImaginstuff - Thursday, May 13, 2021 - link

    You do realise that wireless charging is still very inefficient Reply
  • ads295 - Thursday, May 13, 2021 - link

    I think there should be a law forcing it to be named "wired wireless charging" until we can transmit at least 5W of power over a distance of 1 metre. Reply

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