IFA 2019: first introduction to the reduced flagship Sony Xperia 5


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Sony introduced a series of new products at IFA 2019, the most anticipated of which was the Sony Xperia 5 smartphone, which

is a kind of smaller version of the flagshipXperia 1. In rumors, a new “compact” flagship appeared under the name Xperia 2, but these assumptions were not confirmed. The new naming of Sony smartphones looks somewhat mysterious and it is not so easy to understand the explicit logic. Although Sony currently has a line of smartphones with 21: 9 screens, which until recently included mid-priced Xperia 10 Plus, Xperia 10 and the flagship Xperia 1. Xperia 5 is somewhere in between. And given the current tight cooperation with the Alpha division, I would not be surprised to see any Sony Xperia 1 MarkII in the future. But these are exclusively personal speculations.

How does the Sony Xperia 5 look and feel?


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Leaks with renderings were confirmed and no surprisehappened. Xperia 5 looks very similar to its older brother Xperia 1: the same shape, materials and arrangement of functional elements. Almost the entire front panel is occupied by a 6.1-inch OLED display with a 21: 9 aspect ratio and minimal frames on the sides. An OLED matrix is ​​used, but the resolution is lower than in Xperia 1 and is 2520x1080. In technology, everything is the same as in my older brother: HDR, X-Reality Engine, and that’s all.


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All functional elements in the usual places. All buttons and a fingerprint scanner are located on the right side. The decision, as practice with past models has shown, is a bit controversial. On the one hand, a separate button for the camera is convenient. On the other hand, the abundance of buttons makes it difficult to use a smartphone with various manual stabilizers. Yes, not many users use them, but there is such a moment. On the left of the smartphone is the tray, on the bottom is the speaker and Type-C.


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The difference affected only the rear panel. The triple main camera module has now moved from the center to the upper left corner. As before, the smartphone’s screen and back are protected by 6th generation Gorilla glass with an oleophobic coating. There is protection against dust and water. The smartphone is available in black, light gray (which looks more like white), dark blue and red. According to the first data, all colors are planned to be transported to Ukraine, and the start of sales is planned for the end of October. But, as practice shows, in the end only a couple of the most standard colors can come, and the chic red will never reach.


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Compact Xperia 5 can only be calledrelatively. One side. was the Compact line, in which there were models 4.5, 4.6 and 5 inches, against which 6.1 inches looks a bit too much. But if we take into account the current trends for increasing the screen of smartphones already close to 7 inches and the aspect ratio of the screen of the Sony Xperia 5 21: 9, due to which the smartphone turned out to be narrow, the term “compact” is already quite applicable. The width of the smartphone is 68 mm. For comparison, the most “compact” current flagship Samsung Galaxy S10e is slightly wider, 69.9 mm. For personal first impressions, using a smartphone is quite comfortable with one hand.


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Bonus: Sony has finally released normal cases. Previously, there were only various variations on the theme of book covers. Now there will be normal bumpers in the color of the smartphone:


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What about the stuffing and the software?

Inside Sony Xperia 5 completely repeathis older brother: Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal memory, microSD slot, dual-band Wi-Fi with support for MIMO 2x2, NFC and Bluetooth with support for LDAC and aptX HD codecs. The battery has lost a little weight: 3140 mAh (versus 3330 for Xperia 1) with support for fast charging Power Delivery via Type-C. There is still no wireless charging. By autonomy, I’m not worth waiting for any revelations. We were not able to launch benchmarks on the sample, although the filling is already familiar and there will probably be no problems with performance.


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The smartphone is still running on Android 9 with its ownshell. Update to 10 matches promised in October-November. I think. it will be so, Sony usually has no problems with updates. 9 arrived at the Xperia XZ2 Compact earlier than most Android One smartphones. There are no special innovations in the shell compared to Xperia 1: redrawn icons and interface elements, Side Sense and chips for working with two windows, including icons for quickly launching two applications at once in split-screen mode. Plus, they sawed all sorts of small pieces of machine learning work. For example, a smartphone will detect a weakening Wi-Fi signal and automatically switch to a mobile network for a “seamless” connection (the chip is not new). The smartphone fully supports the DualShock 4 gamepad, and the Game Enchancer app has some new features. It is possible to record your voice comments, while you can modify your voice and adjust the ratio of the volume of the game and voice. Plus there is an auto-capture function of 10 screenshots, from which you can then choose the best.


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What about cameras?


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The configuration of the main camera remains identical.Xperia 1: three modules of 12 megapixels of 12 MP. The main module received aperture optics f / 1.6, optical stabilization and a viewing angle of 78 °. The second is a telephoto for 2x zoom with f / 2.4 aperture, also with OIS. And the third is super wide angle with f / 2.4 aperture and 130 ° angle, without OIS. The front camera is 8 megapixels, f / 2.0. Improvements affected mainly software and processing algorithms. We still have to deal with the latter in more detail in a future review. Recommendations for the photo were added to the software, for example, a smartphone will inform if a finger got into the frame or autofocus missed. They improved the autofocus operation with moving subjects: now instead of 10 times, AF will be calculated 30 times per second, which is especially useful for serial shooting. Autofocus function on the eyes is present, as in the older model. The Cinema Pro application is still quite sophisticated, more suitable for people who know what they are doing. From the innovations, the frame lines appeared (on the screen it is clear that in the frame at different aspect ratios of the recording), it became possible to rename projects, fix the white balance, adjust the sound level (microphone sensitivity) and adjust the interchangeable focus. For example, when turning during shooting, you need to focus on objects closer and further: the initial and final focal length and the time range of its shift are set. The quality of the photo is still difficult to say: they managed to shoot only in the daytime, we will leave this for a future review. In the meantime, a few examples of photos:


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In the dry residue

Sony Xperia 5 made a very pleasant firstimpression, in particular because of its relatively compact and convenient size. The smartphone is beautiful, got a flagship filling and a high-quality (visually) display. We will deal with all other features (including the camera) in detail during the full review. By that time, its cost will already be known and it will be possible to more objectively assess how interesting it is, taking into account other relevant flagships.