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Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review

Sony Xperia XZ Premium

Posted: , by Damian M.

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Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review

Introduction


Sony has been among the more prolific smartphone manufacturers over the past few years. Throughout 2016, the Japanese manufacturer unveiled seven new smartphones, and at MWC this year, it introduced four more handsets. The top device in the latter bunch was the Xperia XZ Premium.

With the XZ Premium, Sony promises unparalleled experience thanks to its revolutionary camera tech, excellent 5.5-inch 4K display and Qualcomm's latest silicon – the Snapdragon 835. Let's see if it delivers.

Design

That's one big and gorgeous fingerprint magnet.

The XZ Premium is a beautiful phone. It comes with a 5.5” display in a rather bulky chassis, but still feels quite comfortable to hold. The body is mostly glass and metal, and it feels satisfyingly solid thanks to its size and weight. There's just one aspect to the Xperia XZ Premium's design that we're not too keen on, and that's its susceptibility to fingerprints, courtesy of its otherwise stunning mirror-like finish.

Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review
Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review
Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review
Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review

When it comes to the fingerprint scanner, it will be available outside the US only, as expected, and it's embedded in the power button on the right side. The same side of the phone also holds the volume rocker which is placed above the power button and is far more comfortable to use than those of the Xperia XZ and Xperia XZs.

The left side of the phone holds only the combined SIM and microSD tray. The bottom houses the USB Type-C port, and the top – the 3.5 mm jack.

When you look at the Xperia XZ Premium's front, you see a classic Sony design – bezels that are slightly on the big side, but also give the device a rather stylish formal look. Pair this with the impressive display and the dual front-firing speakers, and you have a truly great-looking handset that certainly catches the eye.

Overall, Sony did a great job with the phone's looks.


Sony Xperia XZ Premium
6.14 x 3.03 x 0.31 inches
156 x 77 x 7.9 mm
6.88 oz (195 g)

Sony Xperia XZ Premium

Samsung Galaxy S8+
6.28 x 2.89 x 0.32 inches
159.5 x 73.4 x 8.1 mm
6.10 oz (173 g)

Samsung Galaxy S8+

LG G6
5.86 x 2.83 x 0.31 inches
148.9 x 71.9 x 7.9 mm
5.75 oz (163 g)

LG G6

Apple iPhone 7 Plus
6.23 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches
158.2 x 77.9 x 7.3 mm
6.63 oz (188 g)

Apple iPhone 7 Plus


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


Display

A very solid screen, despite being a bit blueish.

When it comes to the Sony Xperia XZ Premium's display, it's hard to find something not to like about it. It's a 5.5-inch 4K LCD panel, which makes it plenty crisp in all possible use cases. This includes games, video content, web browsing and what not. That being said, for videos and movies, the difference between a 4K display and a 1080p one would be barely noticeable, unless you really look for it. So, in case you're wondering what the benefits of the 4K panel are, they're most noticeable with VR content, where you will suffer far less quality loss. Bear in mind that Sony doesn't have its own VR platform for smartphones, but you may use the XZ with Google's Cardboard.

Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review

We have only one complaint about the panel – its colors are somewhat unrealistic. However, it does feature three display presets that you can choose from to change the way colors are shown – Standard, Super-vivid, and Professional Mode. The first is the default profile the phone comes with, the second obviously over-saturates all colors, and the third is meant to present you with the most realistic colors. That effect, however, is somewhat spoiled by the slight blueish hue of the screen. Thankfully, you can adjust the white balance as well, using the provided sliders under the Display option in the phone's settings, and completely get rid of any unwanted tints.

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 XZ Premium 548
(Excellent)
5
(Excellent)
1:1239
(Good)
8104
(Poor)
2.15
4.49
(Average)
7.77
(Average)
Samsung Galaxy S8+ 565
(Excellent)
1
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6936
(Excellent)
2.14
5.06
(Average)
4.91
(Average)
LG G6 506
(Excellent)
4
(Excellent)
1:2164
(Excellent)
8639
(Poor)
2.12
5.68
(Average)
7.55
(Average)
Apple iPhone 7 Plus 672
(Excellent)
2
(Excellent)
1:1431
(Excellent)
6981
(Excellent)
2.2
3.11
(Good)
2.63
(Good)
View all


91 Comments
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posted on 16 May 2017, 09:27 1

1. Ordinary (Posts: 2451; Member since: 23 Apr 2015)


Did anyone try VR on this phone?

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:34

6. ibend (Posts: 6675; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)


did it even support daydream?

posted on 16 May 2017, 17:20 1

51. sgodsell (Posts: 4855; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


I have tried Cardboard apps on the Z5 premium. There is no screen door effect like you find on lower resolution displays. Daydream VR is not currently supported on the XZ premium.

posted on 16 May 2017, 14:51 3

44. HomerS (Posts: 418; Member since: 19 Sep 2014)


It doesnt support Daydream it doesnt have an OLED display.

posted on 17 May 2017, 05:31

61. ecologer (Posts: 31; Member since: 25 Jul 2014)


I'd also like to know more about its VR performance.

posted on 17 May 2017, 16:32

71. Cat97 (Posts: 328; Member since: 02 Mar 2017)


Its VR performance is ZERO :).

posted on 17 May 2017, 09:13 3

69. Damian.M (Posts: 19; Member since: 01 Nov 2016)


We did. Thanks to the Snapdragon 835 and the 4K display, it both runs and looks pretty good. Unfortunately, it's not Daydream-ready, so you're stuck with whatever runs on Cardboard, pretty much.

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:29 4

2. pyradark (Posts: 882; Member since: 10 Jun 2012)


what a surprise PA!! Good Job Sony for this awesome phone

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:48 13

8. maherk (Posts: 4847; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


Ikr?!! Finally a fair score for a Sony device.

Although I got the S8 and I'm loving it so far, the XZP is still my favorite phone of the year. It was just small stuff that I got used to have on my phone that kept with Samsung this year.

I just hope reviewers will give this phone enough coverage for it to succeed, as Sony deserves it for the effort they brought with this one.

posted on 16 May 2017, 12:51

37. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4319; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)


Tried S8 and S8+ yesterday, compared it to my OP3 and the size impressed me. And as I suspected, the fingerprint scanner will need time to get used to. It needs quite a travel.
But Sony here, they did a marvelous job...I'm super stoked with the Super slow mo.

posted on 17 May 2017, 03:59 1

58. aBoss (Posts: 138; Member since: 15 Sep 2014)


yea this Sony Xperia XZ Premium is currently the greatest phone out right now. The only phone that may beat it is the Note 8 and thats only if it is coming with a removable battery as I doubt it will come with a 4k screen, 960p slow motion or the perfect fingerprint sensor placement like this Sony

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:29 4

3. dubaiboy78 (Posts: 274; Member since: 19 Sep 2014)


Wow finally from iphonearena! Xz premium with Good grade!

posted on 16 May 2017, 10:11 11

13. yann (Posts: 374; Member since: 15 Jul 2010)


Yea. 8.7:is good, but look at the cons:
1. Fingerprint magnet - how the same problem is not a con in Galaxy S 8 phones reviews?
2. Super slow-motion can be hard to time right - this is unique feature and you complained about it? At least it's there - even for 0.2 sec(not as you wrote 0.15);
3. Cumbersome camera UI - in iPhone 4K video shooting is also different app(not in video settings) but you didn't complain about it? Also it depends from the point of view.

posted on 16 May 2017, 10:39

15. maherk (Posts: 4847; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


To be fair to PA, everyone is talking about the slow mo feature and how you need lots of tries to get it right

posted on 16 May 2017, 12:07

30. yann (Posts: 374; Member since: 15 Jul 2010)


At least it had slow mo at 960fps. Others don't. It can't be a con.

posted on 16 May 2017, 13:05

39. maherk (Posts: 4847; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


If you look closely, you'll notice how they have the 960fps feature as a pro, and that the process of taking one is a con ;)

posted on 16 May 2017, 11:06 5

18. NoAllegiance (Posts: 401; Member since: 21 Mar 2016)


The more ridiculous cons, the better the phone as they couldn't find fault in other aspects.

posted on 16 May 2017, 11:25 1

22. tyrion_lannister (unregistered)


Just because iPhone's camera UI is crap doesn't make the Xperia UI better. Sorry, but a camera UI that doesn't even allow HDR in auto mode, let alone auto HDR is a garbage UI.

posted on 16 May 2017, 13:12 8

40. josephnero (Posts: 592; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)


it has HDR in auto mode.it's just called baclkit scence genious.

posted on 16 May 2017, 13:57 7

41. DanteTheGreat (Posts: 57; Member since: 31 Jul 2014)


It has HDR in auto mode. Don't state falsehoods like they are facts.

posted on 16 May 2017, 15:05 5

46. timaustin2000 (Posts: 42; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)


Eh? It has got HDR in Suprior Auto - it's on by default. They call it "Backlight" but it's HDR.

posted on 17 May 2017, 02:03 4

54. kabiluddin (Posts: 220; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)


@tyrion_lannister I'm not sorry to say that you are dumba**. Pretend to be known it all jacka** like you should eat $hit and shut up.

posted on 22 May 2017, 05:33

81. AmashAziz (Posts: 1479; Member since: 30 Jun 2014)


you're just jealous of him.................LOSER!

posted on 16 May 2017, 20:46 1

52. Valinor (Posts: 36; Member since: 26 Mar 2013)


Actually, the real big cons for me are:

- audio output (how can they build great audio players but put crappy audio in their phones)
- lowlight photos (saw some samples, they really really suck. All my life i've been buying sony cameras, love the photo quality.... but their phone photos can be so much better)
-that bottom bezel.... at least add physical buttons to it. Now its just useless space while the onscreen buttons are also taking up space.

I was about to pre-order but lowlight photos and good audio are really important for me.

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:31

4. androiduser (Posts: 244; Member since: 18 Jun 2014)


Nokia 9 and oneplus 5 . I'm waiting for those 2

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:32 1

5. nikhil23 (Posts: 174; Member since: 07 Dec 2016)


I wonder how the VR looks on this phone

posted on 16 May 2017, 09:43 2

7. tigas (Posts: 4; Member since: 16 May 2017)


This year, it's Samsung Galaxy S8 Vs Sony Xperia XZ Premium vs Iphone 7s world.

posted on 16 May 2017, 11:16

20. AmashAziz (Posts: 1479; Member since: 30 Jun 2014)


iPhone 8*

posted on 16 May 2017, 11:29 4

23. omnitech (Posts: 900; Member since: 28 Sep 2016)


It's going to be the 7s.

posted on 16 May 2017, 12:58

38. AmashAziz (Posts: 1479; Member since: 30 Jun 2014)


An iPhone 8 is being released alongside the 7s and 7s plus. Get your facts straight.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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PhoneArena rating:
8.7Excellent
Display5.5 inches, 2160 x 3840 pixels (801 ppi) IPS LCD
Camera19 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Octa-core, 2450 MHz, Kryo 280 and ARM Cortex-A53 processor
4 GB RAM
Size6.14 x 3.03 x 0.31 inches
(156 x 77 x 7.9 mm)
6.88 oz  (195 g)

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