The Sony Xperia XZ aims to impress with excellent photographic qualities, which is why the camera hardware has been given a welcome upgrade over what we had on the Xperia X. However, you can't have a great smartphone camera without an equally capable camera app to control it.
At IFA 2016, we got the chance to play with the Sony Xperia XZ's camera, and while flipping between screens, we came across a few notable additions. For starters, the Manual camera mode now supports manual focus and shutter speed control – a first on a Sony smartphone. The latter setting goes from 1/4000 of a second to 1 second, which isn't mindblowing, but enough for most creative purposes.
pixel binning algorithms are applied to clear up the digital noise that will surely occur. Speaking of selfies, switching between apps happens much faster, and the new 5-axis stabilization can be enabled when shooting videos with the front snapper.Also, the selfie camera is more sensitive to light now, going all the way up to ISO6400. Then Sony's
Lastly, we're happy to see that 4K video is making a comeback, available as a separate video mode. What we're not happy to see, however, is that the camera might be prone to overheating while capturing in 4K. We'll have to test the Xperia XZ ourselves to confirm if that's the case.
For the record, not all of these goodies will be making their way into the Sony Xperia X Compact. It won't support 5-axis stabilization with its front camera, for instance. 4K video won't be offered either.
The Sony Xperia XZ will be coming in the coming weeks. To learn more about it, feel free to read our Xperia XZ first impressions. And if you're into smaller, more compact handsets, we have a hands-on preview of the Sony Xperia X Compact as well.