Sony Xperia 1 IV Review: An Absurdly Priced Android Phone
Sony’s Xperia telephones aren’t like some other, which is an effective factor. It has a tall 21:9 side ratio with a 4K display screen, and Sony additionally has totally different priorities with its digicam system—it provides up extra guide controls so your images and movies look precisely how you want. The downside? These gadgets are among the costliest round, and the most recent Sony Xperia 1 IV (pronounced “One Mark Four”) takes issues additional to an absurd $1,600 asking worth, or £1,299/€1,399 when you’re within the UK and Europe.
For that sort of money, this cellphone better be foldable, or at the very least be metaphysically good in each method. But it’s neither. The key adjustments to the Xperia 1 IV from the earlier era embody true optical zoom on a cellphone digicam for the primary time, plus customary upgrades like a brand new Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and a boosted battery capability. Little else has been modified, which leaves you additional scratching your head in regards to the unreasonable worth leap.
Sony has caught with the identical design as its previous few telephones, nevertheless it holds up. The Xperia line had flat edges on the perimeters effectively earlier than Apple and Samsung returned to the look, and the matte glass rear stays extraordinarily trendy. The slim bezels on the high and backside date this cellphone a smidge when in comparison with different new handsets, however you may want that over notches or hole-punch selfie cameras.
Arguably one of the crucial essential options that make this cellphone stand out is the headphone jack. Yes, it is unhappy that this handy 3.5-mm jack is now relegated to budget phones, however this is without doubt one of the only a few high-end telephones that maintains it. The similar goes for the microSD card slot. The US variant comes with 512 GB of storage whereas the UK/Europe mannequin begins with 256 GB, however each function the cardboard slot so you possibly can develop house at a second’s whim.
The display screen is a high deal with. It has a 4K decision, which is actually overkill on the 6.67-inch AMOLED show, nevertheless it nonetheless appears great. The colours are extraordinarily true to life, hardly ever over or undersaturated, and there’s loads of element. The 120-Hz screen refresh rate is the cherry on high, making certain that each animation on the cellphone appears buttery easy. Next to the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra’s screen, you are not getting as punchy colours, however that may be a very good factor for shade accuracy’s sake. The display screen would not get as vibrant both, nevertheless it’s greater than sufficient to see on sunny days.
The distinctive, tall 21:9 side ratio makes watching motion pictures really feel relatively cinematic, nevertheless it does make the cellphone relatively awkward to deal with. You must stretch your fingers fairly a bit to achieve the highest of the display screen, although there is a one-handed mode to assist with this.
The efficiency of the Xperia 1 IV, backed up by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, is fairly good. Both the display screen and rear of the cellphone do get uncomfortably heat if you push it with demanding video games like Genshin Impact. But you’ll discover few woes when shopping day-to-day, past Sony’s barely clunky software program and notably when utilizing options like split-screen mode. Equally clunky is the side-mounted fingerprint scanner. It repeatedly recorded phantom touches and did not at all times settle for a faucet to unlock on the primary try.
Thankfully, battery life makes up for this. Despite a demanding 4K, 120-Hz display screen, the 5,000-mAh cell comfortably lasts a full day plus a bit extra on a single cost. You can high it up through the USB-C port or wi-fi charging, however you will want to provide your personal 30-watt charging adapter and cable as a result of Sony doesn’t include either.
It’s the Optics
The pictures know-how you have to get the very best out of the Xperia 1 IV’s cameras is past the simplicity you may anticipate from a flagship smartphone. That’s largely the purpose—Sony expects you will need to tinker with the digicam settings as an alternative of simply urgent the shutter button (which you’ll be able to nonetheless do).
There are three 12-MP cameras right here, a important lens with optical picture stabilization (OIS), an ultrawide, and a telephoto sensor with OIS and true optical zoom. The latter function is the massive new addition this yr. Like zoom lenses made for DSLR and mirrorless cameras, this telephoto lens mechanically strikes between 3.5x and 5.2x zoom, that means in between these zoom ranges you are not getting crappy digital zoom high quality like most different telephones; you are still getting a crisp photograph. However, it is such a small window to play with that it may not matter a lot in any respect.