Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet vs Apple iPad Air
Taking photos is not among the top uses for a tablet, but at this point in time, a high-end model is expected to pack a good snapper. On the back of the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet we find an 8MP Exmor R camera, while the iPad Air sports an iSight camera with 5 megapixels of resolution. Sadly, neither of the two cams has an LED light, so good indoor and low-light shots might be tricky to pull off.
Sony has loaded the Xperia Z2 Tablet with plenty of camera-centric bells and whistles, including its Intelligent Auto Mode, which automatically takes care of the scene settings for you, and a Manual Mode, which gives you better control over the camera's adjustments. We also find HDR, Background Defocus, and Timeshift Burst effects, which are loaded onto the Xperia Z2 smartphone as well. As a whole, the camera user interface is simple to use, and the camera shortcut on the lock screen is a welcome feature. In contrast, the stock Camera app in iOS has very little to offer in terms of settings and modes. HDR is the only advanced feature we're given access to. On the other hand, the camera app loads more quickly and can take photos at a more rapid pace.
You might be surprised by this, but the 5MP photos shot with the iPad Air are about as good as those 8MP ones taken using the Z2 Tablet. In fact, several of the iSight camera's images you'll find below have better, more natural detail, while Sony's slate tends to distort fine details to some extent by artificially boosting the image's contrast and sharpness. On the downside, the iPad's photos have a higher presence of digital noise. At the end of the day, we'd call this a tie.
Both tablets can record 1080p videos, and the image quality is very good for something shot with a tablet. Still, the Z2 Tablet has the upper hand. Sound in its videos is loud, clear, and natural, while the iPad Air's sound is below par.
1. Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet Sample Video
2. Apple iPad Air Sample Video
The built-in loudspeakers on the iPad Air are pretty good, outputting quality sound at a decent volume level, but due to their placement at the slate's bottom, the emitted sound is slightly muffled and the stereo effect is harder to hear. That's one of the reasons why we'd rather have the front-facing stereo speakers on the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet any day. Not only do they sound better than the iPad's, but their positioning creates a pleasant stereo effect while watching videos and listening to music.
While we're at it, the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet comes with the Walkman audio player that's also found on all recent Sony slates and handsets. It is probably one of the best music players you'd get on an Android device out of the box, with its beautifully designed user interface and rich feature set. Furthermore, if you own a pair of Sony MDR-NC31EM headphones, the Z2 Tablet will let you enjoy clearer sound through its built-in active noise cancellation. On the iPad Air we see a music player that is more bland in appearance, but it gets the job done well with its intuitive and easy to use interface. iTunes Radio, Apple's audio streaming service, comes built-in.
A perk that's growing in popularity among smartphones and tablets is the embedded IR blaster. The Z2 Tablet has one, allowing it to control TVs and set-top boxes remotely. Apple's iPad Air, on the other hand, lacks this feature.
Both tablets are well suitable for watching videos and even full-length movies thanks to their high-quality displays. The video player on the Xperia Z2 Tablet, in particular, supports all popular media formats at Full HD resolution, along with their accompanying subtitle files. The iPad Air, on the other hand, might require you to convert some of your existing video files before they can be played on it. What's more, moving videos from a computer onto the Z2 Tablet is simply a copy-paste affair, wile the iPad may require software like iTunes for the same job.
Headphones output power (Volts)
Higher is better
Apple iPad Air 0.98
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet 0.29
Loudspeaker loudness (dB)
Higher is better
Apple iPad Air 77
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet 70
2. networkdood (Posts: 6329; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
Nexus 7 2013 is still the best tablet - dollar for dollar...
5. theizzz (Posts: 12; Member since: 01 Oct 2013)
can't wait to see how the N8 will stand up to the N7 2013
15. networkdood (Posts: 6329; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
I am sure it will be great - I would pay 299 for an N8 if it has better sound than prev N7s....
6. Zomer (Posts: 120; Member since: 31 May 2013)
Comparing a Nexus 7 with a iPad Air, yeah that makes sense.
4. ihavenoname (Posts: 1576; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)
I prefer iPad Air. But both really good.
7. romeo1 (Posts: 525; Member since: 06 Jan 2012)
if the displays are almost equally good then the z2 should win in the multimedia part as sound is also an important item when you're watching movies.
my money is on the z2 but have to wait and see how it feels in the hand
10. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3464; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)
"Almost unbeatable responsiveness".....? Yeah laggy as he**. If not laggy, at least unresponsive. There is no time with iPad air when it looks completely smooth #personalreallifeexperience
13. ihavenoname (Posts: 1576; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)
iPad Air ain't laggy, at least it's smoother than my Nexus 7 (2013) which is already buttery smooth
11. datphoneguy (Posts: 144; Member since: 15 Sep 2013)
They're both very nice, high end devices. However - IMO - the iPad has better proportions than the Sony tablet (too long)
12. Aaron_R96 (Posts: 198; Member since: 22 Jan 2012)
I sold my ipad air for the Sony Xperia z2 tablet and can honestly say I dont regret it, both seem to have been just as smooth and i much prefer the ability to have a memory card in the Z2, its screen may not be as sharp but watching movies on the z2 is a better experience due to the front stereo speakers (as opposed to those on the bottom of the ipad) -particularly in landscape, and although only marginally lighter i prefer the z2 for reading on too as holding it in one hand is easier (thicker bezel actually helps!)
16. networkdood (Posts: 6329; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
good for you - you broke away from that walled garden...
19. techperson211 (Posts: 903; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)
+1000000 hahaha I like that "walled garden"
17. rangoj (Posts: 45; Member since: 29 Mar 2014)
I do not understand why so many people love the iPad Air. I used it a couple of days and for me It wasn't anything special, limited OS without any possibility of personalization, system file management is notoriously bad, not even SO fast - my phone Nexus 5 is faster than the iPad Air.
I guess it's great for gaming, but for me nothing else on it is super and great! :)
18. networkdood (Posts: 6329; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
The wife loves her iPad air...if it makes her happy...meanwhile I got a CoolPad 9976a coming in a few days...
20. techperson211 (Posts: 903; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)
Both are good tablet. But I choose z2 tablet . Durability functionality and micro sd. Those thick bezel may look ugly for some but for me it's an advantage for holding it without any accidental touch on the screen.
21. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 3672; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)
Hey Nick T. Please can you share the ipad air wallpaper from the user interface and functionality page. That multicolored one. I loved it please. Thanks.
22. MobileGuru (Posts: 82; Member since: 18 Jan 2014)
Although I think that iOS for iPad is still not suited for productivity, one thing that Apple got right from the start is having the screen aspect ratio at 4:3. Less HD (widescreen) aspect ratio is just more suited for smaller screen devices like tablets.
23. Jauwaad100 (Posts: 3; Member since: 01 Apr 2014)
can you do a comparision on
xperia z2 vs note 10.1 2014 edition