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Sony Xperia XZ Premium: Full, in-depth review


After years of foisting overpriced mediocrity like the Xperia X Performance and the Xperia XZ on us (telephones which were even outclassed via their predecessors), Sony has introduced up the Xperia X XZ Premium. It makes use of the cutting-edge entirety plus a raft of Sony’s very own improvements to create a cellphone which, on paper as a minimum, is competitive with the rest of the marketplace.

After having to grin and nod in a settlement that a squashed gray field represented the height of layout and that the use of an old chipset warranted the moniker, “Performance,” it becomes fresh to preserve in our palms a device that looked super earlier than we’d even grew to become it on. But would it not live as much as the promise this time? We’d been snubbed from the release after running off-message with the previous fashions, so our hopes weren’t high…

Key specifications

5.5in, 3840 x 2160, 807ppi IPS LCD display; 6,64GB RAM; 2.45GHz Snapdragon 835 octa-center CPU plus Adreno 540 GPU, 19MP/13MP cameras, Android 7.1, three,230mAh battery, Fingerprint reader, MicroSD/Dual SIM card slot (on some variants), IP68 water-proof, 156 x 77 x 8mm, 195g. Full specifications right here.

Design and Handling

We have been simultaneously struck using each of the dimensions and the incredible chromed finish of the Premium (it’s available in vivid black from maximum retailers). This is a whopper of a telephone, and at 195g, it feels it. Sony has (barely) pushed beyond its squashed box layout values and, as a substitute, introduced us to curved corners and edges which run all the manner down the cellphone.

These make it relaxed to keep, and it’s especially not slippy, notwithstanding being coated in top-notch-difficult Gorilla Glass 5. You can actually use the lower back as a replicate. We have been impressed. Yet regardless of the period, the display is ‘best’ five. Five inches means that there are big regions of the lifeless area at the top and bottom of the cellphone. We’d generally complain approximately the awful use of space (see the huge HTC U Ultra), but, as we’ll see beneath, it seems like Sony has used this space to % the technology in.

Sony Xperia

And the show really has it packed in. The LCD uses generation from its TVs to ramp up the color and provide High Dynamic Range. We’ve already visible HDR on the LG G6, but truely, it hardly ever impresses us on LCD generation (cellphone or TV length). What’s extra to be aware of here is the ridonculous resolution of 3,840 x 2, a hundred and sixty, and the whopping 807ppi resolution. This all combines to make the display screen (theoretically) the quality available on the market. It absolutely shows while looking at 4K videos, viewing snapshots, and using VR (though we struggled to find a huge enough headset). But there are caveats right here.

It’s disappointing that the telephone hasn’t been optimized for Netflix. Netflix is the house of a maximum of 4K and HDR content; however, all you could get admission to is instantly HD content material like another telephone. The equal goes for Amazon Prime Video. We moved on to Google Play. However, there’s no reachable UHD content either (it seems to be location established, and there’s none in Australia). Even the Playstation Movie keep had no 4K content. So except you’re looking at your very own 4K films or YouTube showreels, it’s intricate to make the maximum of it for videos.

Few will bitch; however, whilst the marketing cloth screams about all the display screen technology getting used, it’s well worth noting that the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S8’s display screen appearance better despite supplying a decrease UHD decision. It’s also really worth noting that colorings don’t pop as much as with AMOLED-wearing opponents. The strength button is straightforward to discover and doubles as an excellent fingerprint reader. There’s also every other button for the usage of a digital camera shutter.

That leaves picture viewing as the important thing beneficiary of the show. In phrases of utilization, the implementation of Qualcomm’s pinnacle-end processor’s method is one of the quickest phones rounds – the whole lot is as on the spot as we’d desire, and games all run easily and with load instances, many of the quickest on the market. Android 7.1 is used and feels very local with Sony has achieved little to clutter with it. Google Assistant is likewise to be had.

Sony has caught with the blended, aspect-mounted energy button-cum-fingerprint reader; however, it really works almost instantly and reliably, and we discovered it very beneficial. Sony adds a button at the bottom of the proper-hand side, which requires minimal strain to press, and so is a useful camera shutter button while in panorama mode (and underneath water). We feared it would often get pressed by chance and disrupt matters, but it didn’t.


We’re happy to see that Sony offers a stereo audio system. In a world wherein maximum competitors are imparting a unmarried primary speaker at the lowest in their phones, we had been happy to note that sound fairly sounded fuller and extra rounded. There is a bit of punch or even a soupcon of bass. However, it doesn’t get as loud as you’d anticipate. This extends to conference calls or even ordinary voice calls – it’s nevertheless nicely usable for video calls – but in noisy environments, we struggled to hear on activities – greater so than with competitors. A devoted microphone within the frame facilitates make all earbuds and headphones noise canceling, and 24-bit audio support approach high-end playback is supported (with well-matched gadgets).


Sony’s cellphone cameras have been particularly frustrating over the years. While very capable of incredible photographs, the shutter lag and focal-achieving method that shots have regularly been ignored or pop out blurred. It looks like Sony has subsequently positioned this to bed, however – as a minimum for the most component. While many competitors have been dropping resolution so that you can maximize low-mild overall performance, Sony has kept a excessive 19-megapixel resolution for its fundamental digital camera and thirteen-megapixel decision for its Selfie digicam.

Most human beings will depend upon the Intelligent Auto mode, which doesn’t automatically create consciousness and expose photos but optimizes settings for every scene. As such, if it recognizes a near-up photograph, you’ll find a pleasing bokeh (blurred) impact has been brought while night-time effects get brought light processing. Fast-moving objects also can be detected and accounted for. For the maximum component, it works thoroughly. All cameras screw up occasionally; however, simply pulling this cellphone out (double-clicking at the energy button close to immediately switches at the camera) and taking pictures led to correct, sharp, properly-uncovered, and dramatic pictures more often than no longer.

You’ll still get the occasional blurry shot; however, in case you maintain snapping, things will commonly come correct in no time – a method that’s helped via predictive capture (it’s going to capture images it thinks you mean to take and save them in a separate folder which can be pretty beneficial). Colors had been vibrant when lighting changed into the top, and in case you had been still, nighttime photographs can be, well, superb. However, this would depend on the digicam efficiently figuring out a night scene and exposing hence. If there had been darkish regions in a well-lit shot, they might pop out quite darkish with elements being misplaced – the natural, pre-processing dynamic range of the digicam isn’t always incredible.


Geneva A. Crawford
Twitter nerd. Coffee junkie. Prone to fits of apathy. Professional beer geek. Spent several years buying and selling magma in Miami, FL. Spent a year lecturing about psoriasis in Las Vegas, NV. Managed a small team writing about circus clowns in Las Vegas, NV. Garnered an industry award while writing about lint in the financial sector. Spoke at an international conference about getting my feet wet with dust in Libya. Spoke at an international conference about researching rocking horses in Bethesda, MD.