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Sony Xperia X Review

Sony Xperia X

Posted: , posted by Chris P.



Sony Xperia X Review


Thanks to the diversified nature of its various businesses, Sony may not be in as precarious a position as the likes of HTC or BlackBerry. All the same, it's plainly obvious that the maker has been having trouble in mobile for a while now. Ditching the Z-series of old, Sony is transitioning to an Xperia X branding, and the eponymous mid-ranger is the first of the new line we get to review.

This move, it's supposed to be a showcase of Sony's willingness to get back to the drawing board and re-imagine at least some parts of its mobile offering. And with an asking price of $549.99, Sony is setting the bar for itself and the Xperia X pretty high. Let's see if they pass our test.


A mix of old and new, the Xperia X offers numerous small improvements, along with some big ones

If you've ever held Sony's still reigning flagship, the Xperia Z5, then you'll know just how uncomfortable it is. The frame towards the back cuts into your hand unpleasantly, and the frosted glass is very slippery. With the Xperia X, Sony fixes the former issue, but not the latter.

Sony Xperia X Review
Sony Xperia X Review
Sony Xperia X Review
Sony Xperia X Review
Sony Xperia X Review

In any case, if we're to continue the parallel with the Z5, the Xperia X is different in many small ways. For starters, the glass up front seamlessly flows towards the sides, creating a beautiful effect. The modular corners of old are also gone as the frame is now a singular piece, the Xperia insignia etched onto the left side is no more, and the lanyard cutout has been retired. The only branding on the back left standing says simply “Xperia”—no Sony, and no G Lens cheat sheet next to the camera. Speaking of the shooter, it's bigger than before and protrudes just a tiny bit.

In short, all of the above combines to give us a clean, distinctive, and very attractive exterior. Sure, the aforementioned issue with the slippery back stands, but seeing as how many will go for a protective case, it's probably not too big of a deal.

Sony Xperia X
5.63 x 2.72 x 0.3 inches
143 x 69 x 7.7 mm
5.36 oz (152 g)

Sony Xperia X

Google Nexus 5X
5.79 x 2.86 x 0.31 inches
147 x 72.6 x 7.9 mm
4.80 oz (136 g)

Google Nexus 5X

Huawei P9
5.71 x 2.79 x 0.27 inches
145 x 70.9 x 6.95 mm
5.08 oz (144 g)

Huawei P9

5.88 x 2.91 x 0.29 inches
149.4 x 73.9 x 7.3 mm
5.61 oz (159 g)


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


Very bright, with impressive gamma response, but ultimately color-incorrect

If you're after trendy technologies such as Quad HD AMOLED screens, the Xperia X will disappoint—but not entirely. Sporting a 5-inch panel, it's an IPS LCD make with “just” 1080 x 1920 pixels. But if you're after the typical “AMOLED” effect, meaning obviously overstated colors, then you're in luck.

The Xperia X's screen is, indeed, not at all color correct. All your primaries and secondary are off target, with Red and Green being the worst offenders. Blue, on the other hand, dominates over them in turn, resulting in a very high color temperature of over 8,200K. In practice, white and the many shades of gray are decidedly bluish, which is annoying.

Onto a more positive note, both maximum and minimum brightness are just excellent, ensuring great experience whether it's midday or dead of the night. Gamma is also on target, and it's actually rare that we get as accurate response. Makes the above-mentioned shortcomings even harder to stomach, unfortunately.

Display measurements and quality

Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better Contrast Higher is better Color temperature (Kelvins) Gamma Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better Delta E grayscale Lower is better
Sony Xperia X 536
Google Nexus 5X 487
Huawei P9 458
LG G5 816
View all

  • Options

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 09:44 22

1. Scarambay (Posts: 95; Member since: 18 Jan 2013)

Bwhahaha! I knew this was going to get a score no more than 6. Classic PhoneArena! XD

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 10:06 7

8. abdoualgeria (Posts: 843; Member since: 27 Jul 2015)

You want to score it 9 ??

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 07:48 5

74. donrox (Posts: 193; Member since: 18 Jul 2014)

Reviewing a phone in a single day. Not including a battery test. I don't think the X deserves a 9, but the 6 makes it seem like the rating has been decided even before starting to review the phone.

IMO all sony phones over here are getting a rating based on prejudice rather than an actual thorough review. such a shame!

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 15:28 3

79. marorun (Posts: 5029; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)

Its deserve a good 8.

The camera is clearly defective the test unit we had when the sony rep came by did not end up in ugly picture like this in fact the picture where amazing.

including 32 gb as base storage on a mid range phone is also something VERY positive.

8.0 or 7.5 minimum. deserved.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 11:12 14

26. ibend (banned) (Posts: 6747; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)

- Its not an iPhone

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 04:22

67. yyzamin (Posts: 301; Member since: 26 Aug 2015)

- Looks like every other Sony phone for the last 5 years!

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 15:28

80. marorun (Posts: 5029; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)

Not an iphone or a samsung you mean.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 11:16 8

29. Andrewtst (Posts: 679; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

PhoneArena is really kind already. Such price with middle range spec give scores of 6 is given face already.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 18:02 3

51. sgodsell (Posts: 5038; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

If any of the people at phonearena had a technical background, then they would have know that the Xperia X's CPU is the new SD 650 with 2 cortex-A72 cores, and 4 cortex-A53 cores. An A72 core is faster and more power efficient than a A57 core that is found on both the SD 808 and SD 810 SoCs. Plus the 650's A72 cores can sustain the high speeds without throttling down, unlike the 808 and 810 which do heat up and need to throttle down when they get to hot. To tell you the truth. I wish they would have put the new 650 in the Nexus 5X. BTW all the benchmarks show that the 650 is faster than a 808, plus it's GPU is faster than the SD 810. But it's the ignorant public like you Anfrewtst that think if a number is lower, than it has to be worse. But this is clearly not the case. Even Qualcomm claim that their SD 650 is faster than a SD 808.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 01:01 1

60. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1543; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)

So near, and so far...
Even you are right that the 650 is better than the 808... nowadays the compertitors are Kirin 950 and up, not the failure SD 808 and 810 were.
The issue is that SD 820 is FAR better than 650, among other things because it is built on 16nm instead of 28nm.
Asking for the price of a flagship and putting the SoC of a midrange is a failure IMHO.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 01:32

62. sgodsell (Posts: 5038; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

See that's just it. You think the SD 650 is mid range. But when you compare it to others. It holds its own quite well to other high end processors. The SD 810 is a fast Processor with its 8 cores and 530 GPU. All the reviews of smartphones using it, show this to be true. Even the 808 is fast. Look at the G4, Nexus 5x, and many others that use it. It's just that the 650 is better. Even though the 650 is using 28nm. The nm is really for the power consumption, and indirectly it can affect speed. The smaller the nm, then the lower the consumption of energy. It's still faster than A57 cores because of the A72 cores. Arm clearly stated this. You find older Intel i5 processors made with 32nm, and they are faster, but also consume a lot more energy.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 06:15

71. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1543; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)

Yes, but again, SD 810 and 808 are LAST YEAR SoCs, and nowadays only worth of medium/high phones, not flagships.
So if you put a price for a phone as if it is a flagship, you should put a SoC that can compete with that. And the SD 650 just can not compete with CURRENT high end SoCs.
Geekbench SD 650 SC: 1300
Geekbench SD 820 SC: 2100
IMHO that's not in the range of "It holds its own quite well"

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 15:13 1

78. sgodsell (Posts: 5038; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

So I guess the iPhone 6/6s is midrange too, because it came out last year as well right. So why doesn't it have a mid range price?. Your logic is completely flawed. Then you try to bring up the worst metric of a single core geekbench 3 test. There is no app or OS that uses a single core. Plus the 650 scores higher than the 808.


posted on 03 Jun 2016, 22:54

88. cheetah2k (Posts: 1759; Member since: 16 Jan 2011)

The iPhone 6/6S isn't even worthy of mid range specs. More like a Samsung J series $99 phone....

posted on 04 Jun 2016, 03:51

89. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1543; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)

If you ignore that the single thread performance is one of the most important metrics in CPU benchmarking, I think we can end the conversation here because I prefer not to patronize you.
Now let us check that metric for the iphone 6s:
Geekbench SD 650 SC: 1300
Geekbench A9 in the 6S: 2500

And that is just an example, you can do that wit multithread, with GPU results, etc... the SD 650 fails short in every metric compared with the 2016 SoCs (Exynos 8890, SD 820, Kirin 950) or even last years A9.

The SD 808-810 failed last year, and the SD 650 does not compete with those failures, but with the new processors.

posted on 05 Jun 2016, 01:38

95. perry1234 (Posts: 168; Member since: 14 Aug 2012)

@sgodsell , you forget one important fact while comparing the pricing of Xperia X and iPhone 6s. Apple develop their own OS , their own CPU and assist in the development of GPU. All these ,on their own ,add to the cost of the device.

Sony on the other hand , gets a ready-made CPU from Qualcomm and ready-made FREE software from Google. They just as some fine touches on the s/w side and a little optimization (if any) on the hardware side. So there is absolutely no reason to price their mid range device so very high.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 15:51

81. marorun (Posts: 5029; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)

SD820 phone usualy cost more than this.

i would say this phone clasiffy as high mid ranger.
Phone price come from more than just hardware because otherwise iphone would be mid ranger thats are super overpriced.

Also ppl need to start testing the phone and using them before speaking.
So many liar say the SD615 in moto x play is slow.
Well why i can play game like Real racing 3 and world of tank whitout stutter and slow down?

RR3 run at 60 fps steady world of tank between 41 and 60 fps.

Its also butter smooth for internet navigation and UI usage.
Only place i saw it to be slower is opening app its take 1 second more than current gen flagship.

So if its waterproof and made with quality material the price is not so bad.
Sure could be better if 50-100$ less but its not thats high compared to what some OEM do.

posted on 04 Jun 2016, 04:01

90. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1543; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)

I am no saying it is slow, a SD 615 is very well in range of the SD 801 of my Nexus 5 and I am quite OK with it.
But I am already searching for a replacement, and SD 6XX are not in my list, because they are slower than the latest SoCs and I tend to use my phones a lot and for a long time so I prefer to by them "as future proof as possible" if such thing exists.

I know most of SD820 cost more than $550, but there are also several options for less, and that is where this phone has a problem.

I am of the opinion that there is not really such a thing as a bad phone, there are just bad prices for a phone. And IMHO this one should be at least $100 cheaper.

posted on 05 Jun 2016, 03:33

96. Furbal (unregistered)

You can get a 128gb nexus 6p new for $50 cheaper. This phone has no legs to stand on

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 01:35 2

63. techperson211 (Posts: 1280; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)

Classic scoring when it comes to Sony phones.. Not surprise though. The only cons of this phone is the price. Everything else is in between a mid range and a flagship device in terms of performance, camera, audio and baterry life.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 11:51 6

33. sharks (Posts: 236; Member since: 16 Feb 2013)

I knew the sh*tstorm was gonna happen with the new Xperia... as with all Xperias really. Sony should just give up at this point. At least it tried something new and apparently this was the ultimate effort with the new X series which turned out to be worse than the Z series.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 17:06

47. medtxa (Posts: 1372; Member since: 02 Jun 2014)

Screen is belong to lower end phone Inaccurate color and low contrast. I might consider this phone if it had Amoled.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 02:37 2

64. uzimafioso (Posts: 463; Member since: 15 Jul 2014)

Not true. Sony includes a RGB control panel in display settings. Just move the R and G sliders to around 125 each and you get great 6800K color temp and if you want precision you can move it up to 155 150 respectively

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 15:53

82. marorun (Posts: 5029; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)

Yeah its even better than Samsung way of doing it because you can really change them to your liking and not just preset like on S7 ect.

But SamsungArena did not want to give the full capacity of the phone so they just take what come out of the box but in Samsung review they talk about the feature to change color accuracy... funny no?

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 22:39

87. medtxa (Posts: 1372; Member since: 02 Jun 2014)

And that slider can hurt contrast even more. I'm fine with slight inaccurate color but contrast is my first priority, which mean I would never go back to lcd..

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 06:27

72. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 3393; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)

It's not the flagship so who cares.

posted on 03 Jun 2016, 06:28

73. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 3393; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)

Even the guy's at anandtech don't like the X so farhttp://www.anandtech.com/show/10381/the-sony-xperia-x-preview

posted on 05 Jun 2016, 23:22

99. phoneclown (Posts: 9; Member since: 12 May 2016)

I mean, what would you score it?

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 09:45 29

2. Rydsmith (unregistered)

The price single handedly kills this phone.

posted on 02 Jun 2016, 09:48 24

3. T-rex (unregistered)

Oops! Somebody did not get invited to japan last month

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Sony Xperia X

Sony Xperia X

OS: Android 7.0 6.0
view full specs
PhoneArena rating:
Display5.0 inches, 1080 x 1920 pixels (441 ppi) IPS LCD
Camera23 megapixels
Qualcomm Snapdragon 650, Hexa-core, 1800 MHz, ARM Cortex-A72 and ARM Cortex-A53 processor
Size5.63 x 2.72 x 0.30 inches
(143 x 69 x 7.7 mm)
5.36 oz  (152 g)
Battery2620 mAh, 10 hours talk time

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