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Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium hands-on review:


Premium Sony Xperias is where a lot of firsts happen – first 4K display on a smartphone with the Z5 Premium, first HDR display on a smartphone with the XZ Premium alongside 960fps super slow-mo video recording, and now, on the Xperia XZ2 Premium – a dual camera for the first time on a Sony smartphone (a bit late to that party, eh?).
But what a mighty dual camera it is for a first crack at it – a couple of large, 1/2.3″ sensors – one RGB and the other black and white. So, without a Bayer filter and with some large pixels you get more light reaching the sensor, higher per-pixel sharpness, and better dynamic range. Sony is also pushing the limits of sensitivity with the ISO going as high as 51,200 in stills and 12,800 in video.
One caveat, though, and we’ll be repeating this a bunch of times – the software on the Xperia XZ2 Premium is pre-production – as far as we know, that goes for all the XZ2 Premium units you see tested online. That means image quality is not yet final. And also, the portrait mode and the dedicated monochrome shooting ate not yet available – they’re coming, only they aren’t here just yet.
Now on to the display – as with all Sony Premiums, it’s got a 4K resolution and this time around it’s also grown a bit to 5.8 inches in diagonal, compared to the 5.5 inches of the older two. We’re somehow willing to accept the resulting drop in pixel density below 800ppi – it’s ‘just’ 765ppi this time.
The rest of the hardware is pretty standard – Snapdragon 845, of course, 6 gigs of RAM and 64GB of storage – all the latest and greatest. Battery capacity is the largest on a Xperia Premium smartphone yet – 3540mAh is about 10% more than last year’s model.
And here’s a quick rundown of the entire specs list, before we go hands-on with the XZ2 Premium.

Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium specs

  • Body: Aluminum frame, Gorilla Glass 5 back and front; IP65/68; 158 x 80 x 11.9mm, 236g; Chrome Black and Chrome Silver color schemes.
  • Screen: 5.8-inch IPS LCD, 16:9, 3840x2160px,765ppi, HDR.
  • Rear Camera: Primary 19MP, 1/2.3″ sensor, 1,22µm pixel size; f/1.8 aperture, 25mm equivalent lens. Secondary 12MP black &white, 1/2.3″ sensor, 1.55µm pixel size; f/1.6 aperture lens. Predictive hybrid laser/phase detection/contrast AF, burst AF, IR sensor for white balance, LED flash, dedicated hardware shutter key, BIONZ for mobile image-processing engine; ISO up to 51,200 for stills.
  • Video Recording: 4K video recording @30fps, HDR video up to 4K, 1080p @60fps, 1080p@960fps, Steady Shot image stabilization; stereo audio recording; predictive capture; ISO up to 12,800 for video.
  • Front Camera: 13MP, 1/3.06″ sensor; f/1.8 aperture, 22mm equivalent lens; 1080p video.
  • Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Kryo 385 (8x custom Cortex-A75 @ up to 2.8GHz), Adreno 630GPU.
  • Memory: 6GB RAM, 64GB UFS + microSD (up to 400GB).
  • OS: Android 8.0 Oreo.
  • Battery: 3540mAh; Quick Charge 3.0, USB Power Delivery, Wireless Charge (QI); Qnovo adaptive charging.
  • Connectivity: Single SIM and Dual SIM version (nano SIMs), 4G VoLTE, 5CA LTE Cat.18 (up to 1.2Gbps download), 4×4 MIMO, dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5.0, GPS/GLONASS/Beidou/Galileo/QZSS, NFC, USB 3.1 Type-C.
  • Audio: Dynamic vibration system, High-res audio, DSEE HX, LDAC, Stereo speakers with S-Force surround, aptX HD audio.
  • Misc: Fingerprint sensor on the back, 3D creator scan with back and front cameras, SDR to HDR video upconversion.
  • We’re going to see what the XZ2 Premium can offer us but yeah, a disclaimer is due.
    • This is a pre-production unit running non-final software. Therefore, while the hardware is to the best of our knowledge identical to future retail units, the appearance and performance of the finalized software may differ. Hence, we’ll be calling this a ‘preview’.

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