Which quad-core? Mediatek MT6588 Vs MT6589T


With the launch of the very first quad-core MT6588 smartphones readers have asked what is the difference between this new quad-core SoC and the MT6589T? Let’s take a look.

Love them or hate them, but Mediatek are one of the main reasons many of us look at Chinese phones as a viable alternative to more mainstream devices. What their processors lack in the way of developer support they make up with in features per cost.

Last years flagship Mediatek chip, the quad-core MT6589T, was a game changer for Mediatek (I believe more so than this years octacore MT6592). With processing speeds of up to 1.5Ghz, support for 1080p displays and 2GB RAM, we finally got to see some seriously great Chinese products go on sale.

The MT6589T is still a good chip but is now outdated and will soon be completely replaced with the all new quad-core MT6588, so what are the differences?

Quad-core MT6589T Vs MT6588

Starting with the similarities, both the quad-core MT6589T and MT6588 are quad-core processors based on Cortex A7 architecture, both have support for 1080p displays, LPDDR2 533mhz memory, 13 mega-pixel main cameras and, unfortunately are 3G only compatible.

The differences lie in the the speed of the processor itself the GPU, and that the MT6588 is a mid-range processor where as the MT6589T was the top of the range chip of it’s time. Another major difference is how the chips are made, the MT6589T was manufactured using the 28nm process, where as the MT6588 uses 28nm HPM (High Performance Mobile) the same tech used for the Snapdragon 800 chip by Qualcomm which helps to further increase performance and extend battery life.

The quad-core MT6589T would max out at 1.5Ghz (the MT6589 just 1.2Ghz) but the real achilles heel was the SGX544 GPU running at a snails pace 357Mhz. For the MT6588 Mediatek have increased the top speed to 1.7Ghz and have included a Mali 450 GPU running at 600mhz.

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So the MT6588 should perform a lot better than the originally MT6589T quad-core, especially when it comes to gaming, and battery life should be improved, but it is on price and innovation (which the cost will afford) where we should see the MT6588 shine.

Being able to power a 1080 display and offering similar features to the octacore MT6592 at a lower price should mean that Chinese phone makers will have some space to manoeuvre when building devices around the chip. The first MT6588 phone to launch is proof of this at is happens to be a version of the Gionee Elife E7 Mini with rotating camera. But just because it is possible doesn’t necessarily mean that is what we can expect.

Mt6588 or MT6592

So which should you choose? An octacore MT6592 chip or the MT6588 with similar specs but just 4 cores? The choice is up to you, but I know where my money would go, I just hope I get a little innovation thrown in with it too.

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24 Comments

  1. $2548414
    April 20, 2014

    I think the Qua Core should win..because if power consumption is lower..a few Antutu points lower should not matter..Btw a real comparasion giving power consumption of each chitset would be good..

  2. The Chosen One
    April 21, 2014

    So since my last mention of my Zopo ZP998’s performance I messed up and had to factory reset the device.
    I got rid of some apps and added others and i’m up to 112 apps total and with GPS engaged while travelling and other backgornd apps running I now get a score of 26546 from Antutu and a score of 25360 from Antutu X.

    Those are my real world usage scores so I think if any phone in the wild be it a Quad Core or other that mirrors the features of the ZP998 (OTA,OTG,NFC etc.) and performs at a higher score in real world usage is definately a unit to acquire

  3. kocja
    April 21, 2014

    what about 6582? how does that one compare to 6589T?

  4. anonymous
    April 21, 2014

    The MTK 6592 hasn’t nog only more cores. But also a faster gpu , 700 VS 600 MHz. I would Like to see the mtk 6588 in devices of <$180 and the mtk 6592 in $180-300. I have the mtk 6592 and its a pretty good game phone! All the high end games runs very smooth!

    • Peter
      April 23, 2014

      Is that with a fhd screen? Because my mtk6589t can’t handle the fhd screen IMO when gaming

  5. Guest
    April 21, 2014

    I think the Qua Core should win..because if power consumption is lower..a few Antutu points lower should not matter..Btw a real comparasion giving power consumption of each chitset would be good..

  6. The Chosen One
    April 21, 2014

    So since my last mention of my Zopo ZP998’s performance I messed up and had to factory reset the device.
    I got rid of some apps and added others and i’m up to 112 apps total and with GPS engaged while travelling and other backgornd apps running I now get a score of 26546 from Antutu and a score of 25360 from Antutu X.

    Those are my real world usage scores so I think if any phone in the wild be it a Quad Core or other that mirrors the features of the ZP998 (OTA,OTG,NFC etc.) and performs at a higher score in real world usage is definately a unit to acquire

  7. Browny Brown
    April 21, 2014

    I choose MT6588 because of the battery life. Octa cores are eating my phone’s battery.

    • Danial
      April 21, 2014

      my 8 core zopo zp998 has a really great battery life(2350 mah battery , 5.5 inch 1080p display), so mtk6592 is not battery killer…

      • Browny Brown
        April 21, 2014

        Well, i am glad you said that. I like the specifications, but the display is to big for me. How long is the battery life? Can u get 1-2 days?

        • Danial
          April 21, 2014

          normally it’s AT LEAST 1 – 2 days.

        • Yeti hand
          April 23, 2014

          wait wait wait… So you came here to say octacores are battery killer without having any clue??? NO you can’t be serious

    • Stavros G
      May 11, 2014

      Even W200s with only 2000mAh has great battery life

  8. Guest
    April 21, 2014

    what about 6582? how does that one compare to 6589T?

  9. Guest
    April 21, 2014

    The MTK 6592 hasn’t nog only more cores. But also a faster gpu , 700 VS 600 MHz. I would Like to see the mtk 6588 in devices of <$180 and the mtk 6592 in $180-300. I have the mtk 6592 and its a pretty good game phone! All the high end games runs very smooth!

    • Peter
      April 23, 2014

      Is that with a fhd screen? Because my mtk6589t can’t handle the fhd screen IMO when gaming

  10. Browny Brown
    April 21, 2014

    I choose MT6588 because of the battery life. Octa cores are eating my phone’s battery.

    • Danial
      April 21, 2014

      my 8 core zopo zp998 has a really great battery life(2350 mah battery , 5.5 inch 1080p display), so mtk6592 is not battery killer…

    • Browny Brown
      April 21, 2014

      Well, i am glad you said that. I like the specifications, but the display is to big for me. How long is the battery life? Can u get 1-2 days?

    • Danial
      April 21, 2014

      normally it’s AT LEAST 1 – 2 days.

    • Yeti hand
      April 23, 2014

      wait wait wait… So you came here to say octacores are battery killer without having any clue??? NO you can’t be serious

    • Stavros G
      May 11, 2014

      Even W200s with only 2000mAh has great battery life

  11. Ben Liu
    April 22, 2014

    MT6588 is most likely a binned part of the MT6592 that had failed the core test and had 4 cores shut down by software. This is very much industry standard since the Intel 386 DX /SX days where the parts that failed the FPU Coprocessor was sold as the SX whereas the DX had it intact.

  12. Ben Liu
    April 22, 2014

    MT6588 is most likely a binned part of the MT6592 that had failed the core test and had 4 cores shut down by software. This is very much industry standard since the Intel 386 DX /SX days where the parts that failed the FPU Coprocessor was sold as the SX whereas the DX had it intact.