We list here some speed benchmarks of double-odd curves.

Double-Odd Jacobi Quartics

The main implementation for jq255e and jq255s are in Rust, as part of the crrl library; since that library also implements Ed25519, this allows comparing the relative performance of the curves. On an Intel x86 i5-8259U (Coffee Lake core), with Rust 1.59.0, compiled with the "-C target-cpu=native" flags, the following values are obtained (in clock cycles):

Decode point937192959491
Encode point784778747864
Point mul72080107875107730
Point mulgen435704491540456

These are the measured operations:

  • Decode point: read 32 bytes, and decode these into a curve point. This includes validation that the point is correctly on the curve. Main operation is a square root computation (a merged square root and inversion for Ed25519).

  • Encode point: encode a point into 32 bytes. The point is the output of some computations, i.e. not necessarily in already normalized affine coordinates. Main operation is an inversion in the field. Note: for Ristretto255, this operation is somewhat more expensive, at about 9800 cycles.

  • Point mul: multiply a point by a given scalar. An ECDH key exchange will primarily use this operation, as well as a point decode (on the peer's public key) and a point encode (on the resulting shared secret point).

  • Point mulgen: multiply the conventional generator (base point) by a scalar. In all three curves, the implementation uses four precomputed tables, each containing 16 points in extended affine coordinates, for a total of 6144 bytes. Some minor speed-ups could be achieved with more or larger tables.

  • Sign: sign some data. This assumes that the signer's private key has already been loaded in RAM, along with the encoding of the signer's public key (if not stored along, then the public key can be recomputed from the private key, at the cost of one mulgen and one encode operations).

  • Verify: verify a signature. This assumes that the signer's public key has already been decoded into a point; add the cost of a point decode operation to get the total verification cost using a 32-byte-encoded public key.

All these operations are implemented in pure constant-time code, except signature verification, which is assumed to operate only on public data.

Commentary: we see that double-odd curve are on par with Ed25519 for most operations (Ristretto offers the same performance as Ed25519, except for point encoding, which is slightly slower since it involves a square root operation). Ed25519 is slightly better for operations that use mostly general point additions, while jq255e and jq255s are slightly faster for point doublings. Jq255e, specifically, benefits from the GLV endomorphism for computing general point multiplications by a scalar. Signature verification on jq255e and jq255s is quite faster than on Ed25519 thanks to the use of short signatures.

Original Double-Odd Curves Benchmarks

The original whitepaper defined the do255e and do255s groups, which were implemented in C (with assembly) on x86 (Coffee Lake), ARM Cortex M0+ and ARM Cortex M4 systems. These implementations are published on:

All values are expressed in clock cycles on their respective platforms. Take care that the described operations are slightly distinct from the one uised above; in particular, the "verify (with pubdec)" operation combines the decoding of the public key and the actual signature verification.


For do255e, the following timings are obtained (X25519 values listed for reference):

Operationx86 (64-bit)ARM Cortex M0+ARM Cortex M4
key exchange1008342616600492927
verify (with pubdec)1102263255070558732

Curve do255e benefits from the efficient endomorphism. Curve do255s does not, yielding somewhat larger costs:

Operationx86 (64-bit)ARM Cortex M0+ARM Cortex M4
key exchange1419923591395654557
verify (with pubdec)1587803746889700994

Commentary: while the main benefit of double-odd curves is that they provide a prime-order group with canonical encodings and decodings, thereby avoiding all cofactor issues, the achieved performance is also quite decent. On embedded systems (represented here by the M0+ and the M4), curve do255e consistently outperforms X25519, while at the same time being more versatile since it inherently supports the usual panoply of group-related functionalities (Diffie-Hellman key exchange, Schnorr signatures).


The measured operations are the following:

  • keygen: production of a new public/private key pair;

  • key exchange: ECDH key exchange (processing of a received public key from the peer with the local private key, and derivation of a shared key);

  • sign: signature generation over a given message;

  • verify: verification of a signature.

These operations include all encoding and decoding steps; in particular, public keys use the defined 32-byte format, which is akin to point compression and involves a square root computation and a Legendre symbol when decoding. For key pair generation, a random "seed" is provided as an initialized SHAKE context, ready to output bytes (in practice, this is equivalent to saying that the 32-byte private key is provided, and the cost is that of computing the public key and encoding it). For key exchange, the costs of decoding the peer's public key, and deriving the computed point into a shared key (of length 32 bytes) are included. For signature generation and verification, a short message (or hash value thereof) is provided to the function. Signature verification operates over the encoded public key and thus includes the cost of decoding the public key.

Signature verification time is intrinsically variable; all reported times for that operation are averages.

For comparison purposes, the costs of point multiplication alone are also provided:

  • mul: multiplication of an arbitrary point by a scalar;

  • mulgen: multiplication of the conventional generator by a scalar.

In both cases, input and output points use an in-memory decoded format (in Jacobian coordinates).

Some X25519 timings are also provided. For the ARM Cortex M0+ and M4, we measured the best reported opensource implementations (on the M0+ and on the M4) on our test hardware. For x86, we use the figures reported by Nath and Sarkar in (table 2, for variable base scalar multiplication). Note that "key exchange" on double-odd curves does arguably strictly more than X25519, since it reliably reports whether the peer's point was valid (on the right curve) or not, while X25519 does not yield that information.


x86 (64-bit)

The x86 platform is an Intel Core i5-8295U, clocked at 2.3 GHz. Operating system is a regular Linux (Ubuntu 20.04). Frequency upscaling ("TurboBoost") has been disabled, to ensure more consistent measures. Compiler is Clang 10.0.0; compilation flages are -O2 -march=skylake. Most of the implementation is written in C; inline assembly is used for the multiplications and squarings in the field, as well as the inner loops of inversion (optimized binary GCD) and Legendre symbol computations. Internal representation of a field element is over four limbs of 64 bits each; the mulx, adcx and adox opcodes are used. There is no attempt at using AVX2 explicitly (but the compiler might use it when translating C code).

Clock cycle counts are obtained through the rdtsc opcode (using performance counters yields identical results). The measured operation is executed 2000 times; the first 1000 are considered to be "warm-up", then the median execution time of the last 1000 is returned.

ARM Cortex M0+

Test system is an Atmel (now Microchip) SAMD20 Xplained Pro board, using an ATSAMD20J18 microcontroller. The board was clocked at 8 MHz, allowing read access to the Flash memory without any wait state. Elapsed time is measured with one of the microcontroller counters, configured to use the CPU clock as source; that counter is thus a cycle counter. All interrupts are disabled. Measures have 1-cycle accuracy and are reproducible; they also exactly match timings inferred from manual counting of executed opcodes.

Most the M0+ implementation is written in assembly. Some non-time critical parts are written in C; C compiler is GCC 9.2.1 with flags -Os -mthumb -mlong-calls -mcpu=cortex-m0plus. Internal representation of a field element is eight limbs of 32 bits each. RAM usage (stack) has been kept under 2 kB.

ARM Cortex M4

The M4 test system is an STM32F4DISCOVERY board, featuring an STM32F407 microcontroller. The board was clocked at 24 MHz to ensure Flash access with no wait state.

RAM configuration must be given some attention. While the board has 192 kB of RAM, one third of it (64 kB) is called the CCM (closely coupled memory). The CCM is linked directly to the CPU, to ensure the most efficient access; however, access to the rest of the RAM goes through the interconnection matrix that regulates memory traffic between the CPU, Flash, and peripherals. That matrix tries to allow accesses to RAM (for data) and to Flash (for code) to proceed concurrently, but is not always successful. Thus, if the main RAM is not in CCM, then some slowdown is observed (about 10 to 15%), probably because of access conflicts between data and code within the matrix. In order to avoid this cost, the main RAM (in particular, the data stack) has been placed in the CCM.

The STM32F407 also has a prefetching mechanism for instructions, and caches (separate instruction and data caches). These features apply only to accesses to the Flash, not to the RAM (the caches sit between the interconnection matrix and the Flash, and not closer to the CPU). They can be programmatically enabled or disabled; experimentally, in our setup, enabling prefetching and/or caches does not change the timings, which is consistent with the idea that at 24 MHz, Flash access does not have wait states.

When the X25519 implementation from Emil Lenngren is measured, we obtain a cost of 563310 cycles, which is slightly above the reported figure of 548873 cycles. This may indicate that there is some remaining contention somewhere in the overall system.

The M4 implementation is very similar to the M0+ implementation; it uses the same C files, but all the assembly parts have been rewritten to leverage the abilities of the ARMv7-M opcodes. The same C compiler and flags are used. RAM usage (stack) has similarly been kept under 2 kB.