Apple IPad Mini 3 Review: A Touch Of Gold: Performance

By 10:42 Sun, 15 Aug 2021 Comments


Performance

The Apple iPad mini 3 runs on the previous generation A7 chip, which powers the iPhone 5s and the iPad Air and mini 2. It packs a 64-bit dual-core Cyclone processor clocked at 1.3GHz, snappy PowerVR G6430 graphics and 1GB of RAM. We've already met with the Retina display and Apple A7 combo on the Apple iPad mini 2, so we kind of expected a similar performance with the iPad mini 3.

So without any further ado let's jump straight into the Central Processing Units (CPU) performance. We tested Geekbench 3 and Baseimprint Operating System (OS) II on the latest iPad mini 3 and it is on par with its iPad mini 2 and iPad Air predecessors. The current generation iPad mini 3 is very close to the most popular Android slates out there - the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 and Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. The Tegra K1-running HTC Nexus 9 and Xiaomi Mi Pad are quite ahead of it though.

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GeekBench 3

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    4464

  • HTC Nexus 9

    3470

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    3276

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4

    2867

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    2856

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    2781

  • Apple iPad mini 2

    2512

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    2486

  • Apple iPad Air

    2388

  • Apple iPad mini

    492

Baseimprint Operating System (OS) II

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    1937

  • HTC Nexus 9

    1890

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    1192

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    1167

  • Apple iPad Air

    1128

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    1099

  • Apple iPad mini 2

    1073

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    768

  • Apple iPad mini

    336

Graphics are well handled on the iPad mini 3, though once again not as impressive as it is the competition today. It matched the performance of the Apple A7-based iPad Air and iPad mini 2, as well as the latest Samsung and Sony offerings, but it is just behind the curve when you add the Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9, the HTC Nexus 9 and the latest Apple iPad Air 2 with A8 chip.

These conclusions apply for both the offclassy screen and onclassy screen tests.

GFX 2.7 T-Rex (1080p offscreen)

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    70.4

  • HTC Nexus 9

    60.2

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    53.1

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    28.2

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    27.4

  • Apple iPad mini 2

    27

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4

    26

  • Apple iPad Air

    25

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    20.5

  • Apple iPad mini

    3.5

GFX 2.7 T-Rex (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    52.2

  • HTC Nexus 9

    46.2

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    41.3

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    39.6

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    23

  • Apple iPad Air

    21

  • Apple iPad mini 2

    21

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4

    17

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    13.6

  • Apple iPad mini

    6.5

GFX 3.0 Manhattan (1080p offscreen)

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    32.6

  • HTC Nexus 9

    31.5

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    27.3

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    13.1

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    11.8

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4

    8.9

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    5.6

GFX 3.0 Manhattan (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    25.4

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    24.7

  • HTC Nexus 9

    22.6

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    19.8

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    8.9

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4

    5

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    2.9

Baseimprint X

Higher is better

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    29753

  • HTC Nexus 9

    28244

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    24456

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    14781

  • Apple iPad Air

    13597

  • Apple iPad mini 2

    13286

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    12080

And finally we're looking at JavaScript performance on Mozilla's Kraken 1.1 test. Here the Apple iPad mini 3 showed stellar performance, even though it was bested by some of its competitors.

We couldn't test BrowserMark 2.1 as the iPad mini 3 had an issue with its page and kept reloading so we cannot give a statement on HyperText Markup Language (HTML) 5 performance just yet.

Kraken 1.1

Lower is better

  • HTC Nexus 9

    3953

  • Apple iPad Air 2

    4054

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    4647

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 (Exynos)

    4927

  • Apple iPad mini 3

    5382

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    6480

  • Apple iPad mini

    28999

The Apple iPad mini 3 provides very fine performance and you'll hardly find any app that won't run properly on it. The thing that bothers us, is the competition is getting really tough and the iPad mini 3 is already behind at launch. But for what's worth, the slate is fast, snappy and responsive and you'll probably find nothing to complain of.


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