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Sony Xperia L Review

Posted: , by Victor H.

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Sony Xperia L Review
Introduction:

The Sony Xperia L is a mid-range device that screams Sony from the first look. And in a world filled with affordable mid-range Android devices design is of paramount importance. In this case, the Xperia L is an elegant phone, featuring a noticeable inward curve and a beautiful diffused LED light strip at the bottom that lights up whenever you have notifications pending.

With a 4.3 inch screen the Xperia L is a compact handset, great for single handed operation. It has no huge ambitions when it comes to performance or camera quality, but for some a smooth overall experience in the interface might be enough. Is there more to the Xperia than it appears on the surface, though? Read on to find out.

Sony Xperia L Review
Sony Xperia L Review

Design:

The Xperia L has the very distinct for Sony concave shape we have first seen in the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc. It adds an extra flare of elegance but is also practical as it makes it harder for the device to slip out of the hand. Overall the device feels solidly built. In terms of physical dimensions, it has this prolonged hexagon shape that makes it look a bit larger than the typical 4.3-inch smartphone. The soft-touch plastic back makes it pleasant to hold.

The Sony Xperia L feels solidly built - Sony Xperia L Review
The Sony Xperia L feels solidly built - Sony Xperia L Review
The Sony Xperia L feels solidly built - Sony Xperia L Review

The Sony Xperia L feels solidly built


Sony Xperia L
5.07 x 2.56 x 0.38 inches
128.7 x 65 x 9.7 mm
4.83 oz (137 g)

Sony Xperia L

HTC One SV
5.04 x 2.63 x 0.36 inches
128 x 66.9 x 9.2 mm
4.30 oz (122 g)

HTC One SV

Nokia Lumia 720
5.04 x 2.66 x 0.35 inches
127.9 x 67.5 x 9 mm
4.52 oz (128 g)

Nokia Lumia 720

LG Optimus L7 II
4.78 x 2.62 x 0.38 inches
121.5 x 66.6 x 9.7 mm
4.07 oz (116 g)

LG Optimus L7 II

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page.


All of the physical buttons are located on the right hand side: the new round power button that sticks out a bit, a volume rocker above it and a dedicated camera shutter key on the bottom. On the back there is an 8-megapixel camera with a single LED flash.

Front - Sony Xperia L Review
Front camera - Sony Xperia L Review
Capacitive Android keys - Sony Xperia L Review

Front

Front camera

Capacitive Android keys


Right side - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review
Left - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review
Bottom - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review

Right side

Left

Bottom

Top - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review
Rear camera - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review
Speaker grill - The sides of the Sony Xperia L - Sony Xperia L Review

Top

Rear camera

Speaker grill

The sides of the Sony Xperia L


Finally, all of that comes in three color versions - a starry black, diamond white and a red one.


Screen:

The 4.3-inch screen is a welcome break from the large 5-inch and bigger screens of today as you can actually operate this device with just one hand. Sony uses the Android on-screen buttons for navigation. That means they do take up a bit of those 4.3 inches, so in reality there is less room for icons and other usable content.

At 4.3 inches diagonal and with a resolution of 480 x 854 pixels the screen is not amongst the sharpest ones out there. Pixel density comes at the mediocre 228ppi.

Viewing angles are fairly average and when you tilt the device you’d notice colors losing their saturation. Even without tilting the device though colors look a bit bleak and that is especially noticeable in the blacks that tend to look greyish rather than pitch black. Brightness is sufficient for outdoor use especially if you manage to get the device at the right angle to avoid reflections.


48 Comments
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posted on 21 May 2013, 04:43 15

1. tadaa (Posts: 180; Member since: 18 Apr 2013)


I don't think 6.5 justifies the phone. If compared to flagships then yes, but this is a mid-to-low range device and i cannot see how it isn't better than other mid range offerings from major manufacturers. And why put the soc used as a con? Isn't it the norm for mid-rangers like the L720 and s2 plus to feature a processor of that caliber? I think the device deserves no less than a 7.5

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:03 17

3. emadshiny (Posts: 1091; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


i think you're new here
low rates for Sony are common in PA

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:16 3

4. tadaa (Posts: 180; Member since: 18 Apr 2013)


On the contrary, i knew that but i still expected them to rate it fairly

posted on 21 May 2013, 20:54

30. itsjustJOH (Posts: 67; Member since: 18 Oct 2012)


So you are new here.

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:35

5. boosook (Posts: 779; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


The problem is the price: the price is INSANE, it's currently selling for EUR 270 on Amazon.de, consider that with EUR 300 you can get an Xperia S that sits in a completely different league. The L is not even a mid ranger anymore: in 2013, it can be considered between entry level and mid range. Everything in the L speaks entry level: low res screen, slow processor, ridiculous amount of internal storage, underperforming camera. The price should 100 EUR less. IMO the final rating of 6.5 is right once you consider what you can get at the same price or a just little more. With just a few euros more you can get the S and this means hi-res screen, better camera, better performance, better design. Sony is just trying to milk its users.

posted on 21 May 2013, 07:10 3

12. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


oh so the problem is the price?? i don't think so just check GS2 PLUS review even with low specs can have 7.5

GS2 PLUS also Pricey at launch and i can find many better phone with the same price point.

so i think the problem is :
Samsung paid PA reviewer, PA reviewer is Samsung fanboys, or PA just hates Sony so bad.

i don't know for sure but the rating with almost all Sony devices is not fair

posted on 21 May 2013, 08:31

18. boosook (Posts: 779; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


I agree that the GS2 plus is just a marketing gimmick and it's even worse than the model it replaces, but right now it can be purchased for a lower price than the L (about 250 euros). Its specifications are more or less the same of the L, actually it is slightly better IMHO since it has an AMOLED screen and a faster CPU. Sony should price its products slightly lower than Samsung, because they have to gain some market share. With the L at that price, the chance that people will choose the L over the GS2/GS2 plus is close to zero.

posted on 21 May 2013, 09:35 2

20. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


HAH... what are talking about its not about market share but we talking about unfair PA rating

i don't think AMOLED 480 x 800 pixels, 4.3 inches (~217 ppi pixel density) with maximum brightness 358 cd/m2 is good display

faster cpu??? you must be doesn't know anything about CPU.
Dual-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A9 and Broadcom VideoCore IV GPU vs Dual-core 1 GHz Krait and Adreno 305 GPU

Xperia L CPU and GPU is not only faster, but also more battery efficient, and better thermal efficiency

benchmark comparison
Quadrant
3833 (GS2 Plus) vs 4223 (XP L)
Antutu
8228 (GS2 Plus) vs 9225 (XP L)

posted on 03 Jun 2013, 11:30

36. hms2407 (Posts: 94; Member since: 25 Apr 2013)


my xperia l scores over 11k in antutu

posted on 21 May 2013, 09:42

21. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


GS2 Plus rating 7.5 even when PA mention there is
better phone with the same price point

like HTC One S, Xperia SL, G Grand, and Nexus 4

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:49

8. stychill (unregistered)


You're a funny guy, are we seeing the same things? Those specs are the low end of 2013.

posted on 25 May 2013, 10:36

33. beastuct (Posts: 1; Member since: 25 May 2013)


i agree with u.i think it worths 7.5 - 8.5 at least!!

posted on 21 May 2013, 04:59 9

2. istitch (Posts: 152; Member since: 19 Mar 2013)


is PA expecting S600 chip with 2gb of ram, 12mp camera, with full hd display from a sony midranger?

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:36 1

6. boosook (Posts: 779; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


No, but users are expecting a real midranger for the price sony is asking for the L.

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:51 3

9. stychill (unregistered)


A sony low range device you mean, from what i see calling this mid range and giving it a rating of 6.5 is generous.

posted on 21 May 2013, 05:47 3

7. stychill (unregistered)


This phone seems more along the lines of a low end device, these specs are considered mid range? I think the rating of 6.5 was being rather generous. Lol, 1gb of internal storage.

posted on 21 May 2013, 06:46 1

10. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


if you think the rating is fair please explain to me why GS2 plus with low specs can have 7.5 points???

posted on 21 May 2013, 12:38 2

26. Commentator (Posts: 2186; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


Because the Galaxy S II Plus review was written five months ago before the new standard for high-end was set in the Galaxy S IV, One, Optimus G Pro, etc. If the standards for high-end are going to change, the standards for mid-range have to change to. It might seem unfair but timing is everything.

That being said, I wouldn't have rated the Xperia L any lower than a 7 considering other mid-range reviews (such as the Galaxy S II Plus), but these are all done by different reviewers (Nick T. vs. Victor H.) and I don't think there's some Grand Council over at PhoneArena World Headquarters that decides upon a uniform rating for every single review. Maybe there should be.

posted on 21 May 2013, 16:58 3

29. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


what timing ??
in that time you can have better phone like HTC One S, Xperia SL. G Grand, and Nexus 4 with the same price
even PA metion about it

PA really hates SONY so bad

posted on 21 May 2013, 07:02 5

11. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


haha... its SAMSUNGARENA.COM
Xperia L 6.5
GS2 plus even with more lower specs than XP L can have 7.5

GS2 PLUS also Pricey at launch and i can find many better phone with the same price point.

i think for PA even Galaxy Y still better than Xperia Z

posted on 21 May 2013, 12:22 8

24. aditya.k (Posts: 411; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


At least here in India, the Galaxy S2+ and Grand are priced higher than the Xperia L!

No NFC for the Galaxy devices but Xperia L has. Better CPU, GPU on the Xperia L. I can also say better camera though doesn't support FHD capture (not a big deal). RAM and storage same.

This should easily get a 9!

This seriously is disappointing from PA.

posted on 21 May 2013, 07:16 8

13. TheBitterTruth (unregistered)


PA never appreciates Sony and LG. That is not fair.

posted on 21 May 2013, 07:31 9

15. Ninny (Posts: 5; Member since: 21 May 2013)


This review sucks !! This phone should get atleast 8. I bought this phone for my sister , It got great camera at this price , no lag thanks to snapdragon S4 MSM8230 1.2 GHz Dual-core clocked at 1 GHz., Its internal memory is not 1GB it has 4GB internal memory .
Phone arena Sucks in review wait for GSMARENA review . They review phones very better ....not like
SAMSUCKARENA

posted on 21 May 2013, 08:29

17. najib1312 (Posts: 90; Member since: 08 May 2013)


How much did u buy this phone?

posted on 21 May 2013, 12:16 1

23. aditya.k (Posts: 411; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


The internal storage is 8 GB! :)

posted on 21 May 2013, 08:26 5

16. najib1312 (Posts: 90; Member since: 08 May 2013)


PA, r u sure about that price?? US$350 is just insane!! U can get 1 in Malaysia for $280 from Sony centre and some shops sell it even for $240, which is definitely a bargain!!

Nevertheless, that score is really HARSH!! Y do u hate Sony so much? This is a low-to-mid range phone for God's sake!! The way I see it, the competition for Xperia L includes Galaxy S3 mini, Galaxy S2 plus and Xperia P. But I can righfully say Xperia L is MUCH BETTER than all these devices due to:

1) Newer software (therefore, longer support)
2) Bettter processer
3) Sexier design (with the iconic power/lock button)

posted on 21 May 2013, 08:37 3

19. SonyFindOneDroidple (Posts: 441; Member since: 11 May 2013)


Sony Honami will turn Phonearena On!! I SWEAR!!!

posted on 21 May 2013, 12:23 2

25. aditya.k (Posts: 411; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


Haha. Hope so! :)

posted on 21 May 2013, 10:36 2

22. zeiz67 (unregistered)


There is something that is completely weird.
When you look at the sopecs of the phone listed on the phonearena page, you only pros and no cons : among those pros, they list the dual core processor.
In the review... the same processor is a con ! Why did that change in a couple of days?
And regarding the internal storage memore it's not 1 GB nor 4 GB - officiallly it's 8 GB, but there are only like 5,6 GB remaining for usage. [Not to mention the microSD slot that expands the memory up to 32 GB].
I was planning on buying that phone - i've already seen some reviews in France (I'm french) and the said the complete opposite. Here the phone is a real mid-ranger with good mi-range phone specs.
I've always looked at phonearena reviews before investing in a phone - and I have to admit that I'm a litle bit surprised by the 6,5 average... where in France the same phone gets at least a 7,3 to 7,5...
It certainly doesn't have the same capabilities as the Xperie SP or the Xperia S, but I know so many people with the Xperia S that have so many issues with that phoe that I would invest a dime in it.
The Xperia L appeared like a good alternative, and I still think it is.

posted on 21 May 2013, 14:23 5

28. Rexperia (Posts: 98; Member since: 28 Sep 2012)


No wonder and no surprised because PA is really, really, really hates SONY, no matter what the phone is, you blind PA, open your eyes and mind widely!!!

posted on 22 May 2013, 14:55 2

32. Ambrose41 (Posts: 3; Member since: 22 May 2013)


I don't knw why PA hate Sony phone so much, 6.5 that not fair

posted on 26 May 2013, 08:35

34. carboy00 (Posts: 1; Member since: 26 May 2013)


Doesn't really make sense when the LG Optimus L5 II and Acer Liquid E2 both got a 7.5 and this got a 6.5. Personally I think this is a much better phone than those 2. Just my thoughts, PA ought to be more fair in ratings.

posted on 29 May 2013, 23:24

35. Sondae (Posts: 181; Member since: 02 Jan 2013)


This device deserve higher rate rather than 6.5. It has a very good feature for a midrange unlike samsung you wont get that most of there feature like Sony does. This is so bias.

posted on 03 Jun 2013, 11:37 1

37. hms2407 (Posts: 94; Member since: 25 Apr 2013)


worst review by PA,they only talked about the drawbacks of the phone...according to other sites xperia l is a beast (for its price) puts smartphones like the galaxy grand,lumnia 520 and other mid end smartphones to a shame even the htc one x (in quadrant)...According to phonearena only samsung and htc make good phones and only smartphone with quadcore cpu's can play games

posted on 05 Jun 2013, 02:18

38. cttan456 (Posts: 44; Member since: 22 Mar 2012)


In Singapore
Xperia L - USD250
S3 Mini - USD280

Xperia L is the best phone at this price.

posted on 13 Jul 2013, 23:36

41. hashanmunasinghe (Posts: 2; Member since: 13 Jul 2013)


dude....do u got any headphones with packages?

posted on 15 Jul 2013, 08:01

43. hms2407 (Posts: 94; Member since: 25 Apr 2013)


yes!! atlest with the international variant

posted on 05 Jun 2013, 02:58

39. cttan456 (Posts: 44; Member since: 22 Mar 2012)


Quote from review "When it comes to internal storage, there is only a gigabyte of it available to the user."
Wrong info! Please do your corrections Phonearena, available memory to user for is 5.6GB and not 1GB.

posted on 04 Jul 2013, 15:58

40. Mayurb (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Jul 2013)


Is this a paid review by Samsung guys, apart from good performance... Any Samsung phone will look like a piece of plastic in front of this phone.... This phone is so sleek n stylish Think Samsung can even dream of makin such designphones.

posted on 13 Jul 2013, 23:37

42. hashanmunasinghe (Posts: 2; Member since: 13 Jul 2013)


no headphones in the package? WTF?

posted on 18 Aug 2013, 19:14

44. AhmedIbrahim (Posts: 1; Member since: 21 Mar 2013)


i need to know what is the meaning of (processor is not a fufure proof ) and whether it is really or not

posted on 23 Sep 2013, 09:11 1

45. taojj (Posts: 33; Member since: 01 Aug 2013)


This is the best midrange smartfone and one of the best for gaming. Handles every game superbly. It surely deserves 8.5 - 9. Seems like some Alien reviewed it for phone arena or may be this guy has never used anything but Samsung.

posted on 24 Sep 2013, 13:16

46. Rein94 (Posts: 3; Member since: 24 Sep 2013)


Hey guys i need your help, i can't decide between the Xperia L and Xperia M. The Xperia L is about 20 euros more expensive than than M and it looks so damn sexy, but i'm concerned about the score it got. Should i ignore the review? Also, can the xperia L record video? Thanks in advance.

posted on 27 Sep 2013, 08:57 1

47. Madun (Posts: 1; Member since: 28 Aug 2013)


the review so bias
go for Xperia L.
yes XL can recording videos
capable of recording is 720p videos at 30 frames per second

posted on 29 Sep 2013, 04:42

48. Rein94 (Posts: 3; Member since: 24 Sep 2013)


Thanks, i'm getting it tomorrow. :)

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Sony Xperia L

Sony Xperia L

OS: Android 4.2.2 4.1.2
view full specs
Display4.3 inches, 480 x 854 pixels (228 ppi) TFT
Camera8 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus MSM8230, Dual core, 1000 MHz, Krait processor
1024 MB RAM
Size5.07 x 2.56 x 0.38 inches
(128.7 x 65 x 9.7 mm)
4.83 oz  (137 g)
Battery1750 mAh, 8.5 hours talk time

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