First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II

Content

  1. Contents of delivery
  2. TECH SPECS
  3. Positioning
  4. Design, dimensions, controls
  5. Display
  6. Камеры
  7. Impressions

Contents of delivery

  • Smartphone
  • Charger with USB Type C cable (18W)
  • Instructions
TECH SPECS
Dimensions and weight 158 x 68 x 8 мм, 163 грамма
Body materials Metal, glass (Corning Gorilla Glass 5)
Display 6.1-inch, FullHD + (21: 9), OLED, auto-dimming, AlwaysOn Display, Corning Gorilla Glass 5, HDR, 120Hz
Operating system Google Android 10.0
Platform Snapdragon 865
Memory MicroSD memory card up to 512 GB
8/128 GB version (free 118.4 GB is the main version in Russia) and 8/256 GB
Wireless Interfaces Wi-Fi a / b / g / n / ac, dual-band, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC
Сеть 5G (inactive in Russia)
Dual SIM, nanoSIM (combo slot)
Navigation GPS / GLONASS / Beidou / Galileo
Sensors and connectors USB Type C (USB 2.0), OTG
Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor, Light Sensor, Gyroscope, Geomagnetic Sensor
Side fingerprint sensor
Face unlock
Main camera 12 MP (16 mm, 1 / 2.6 inches, Dual PD AF)
12 MP (24 mm, 1 / 1.7 inches, Dual PD AF, OIS)
12 MP (70 mm, 1 / 3.4 inches, PDAF, OIS)

Zeiss Lenses
Eye tracking when taking photos (Pro mode only)
Up to 20 frames per second
4K video, 120 fps slow motion video

Front-camera 8 MP (f / 2.0), bokeh effect, various additional effects
Battery Li-Ion 4000 mAh, fast charging
Degree of protection IP65 / IP68
Colours Black, blue, gray, pink
Sound Two stereo speakers (front), 3.5 mm jack, Hi-Res Audio, Dolby Atmos, 360 Reality Audio (at the level of iron), DSEE Ultimate
Payment System Google Pay 
Games DualShock 4 Direct Connection, 240 Hz Motion Blur Reduction

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

Positioning

At first glance, everything is confused in the Sony lineup, flagships come out with the “one” index, models below the level – with large numbers. I have repeatedly heard suggestions that Sony’s naming method is too confusing and complicated, although I don’t think so. To understand the place of the Xperia 5 in the company’s lineup, you need to look at the entire lineup and realize that in fact it is quite narrow, Sony has killed a large assortment, because they want to make a profit, and not bear the costs of supplying channels and small sales to the end consumer. Over the past year, Sony’s share has dropped globally; the company is invisible even among mid-range manufacturers. But at the same time, the same Xperia 1 II has become an event, the flagship is in short supply, and it is almost impossible to buy it in many countries, including Russia. New lots are sold from wheels, it is almost impossible to get a discount on it.

Let’s go back to the numbers. All key Xperia families start with a number – 1, 5, 10. The higher the number, the lower the cost of the device. There are also letter indices, at the moment it is L-series, budget smartphones. In order not to change every year the number for a smartphone from the key lines, an index is added to it – Xperia 1 II. Very often, in reviews and articles about Sony smartphones, they miss the word Mark, write Xperia 5 Mark II correctly. This is a marketing ploy to show the continuity of two worlds, Alpha digital cameras and smartphones. The first part of the name comes from traditional smartphones, the second from cameras and the functions that smartphones get from them. It is possible that it was by relying on the perception of digital cameras that Sony was able to attract the attention of enthusiasts who are guided by new smartphones. The Xperia 5 II reuses this trick, but also relies on improving sound quality, returning the 3.5 mm jack along the way!

Sony has created a category of compact smartphones with flagship characteristics, such devices have never been inexpensive. This is a deliberate movement towards small models, it is convenient to work with them with one hand. But at the same time, the screen is such that you can watch movies, play games and not experience any difficulties with this. Such devices, by definition, cannot be inexpensive, as many would like, and this is quite a unique phenomenon on the market. Perhaps only a Japanese company can create such solutions with such perseverance without regard to actual sales.

The Xperia 5 II takes the best from all the Sony worlds, and has worked on cameras, sound, and gaming. And this is a very ambitious decision, which, oddly enough, will appeal to the younger audience, those who do not have a Sony perception from the past. Apart from that, Sony still has a loyal audience and will also pay attention to this device. Looking at the Xperia 5 II, I can say that this is an amazing device for our time, in which there are a number of unique features, and for this alone it should be considered carefully.

Let me remind you that this is the first glance, the review will be later, by the time the device hits the market in mid-October.

Design, dimensions, controls

Despite the fact that the device comes in three colors, it is almost impossible to distinguish between the blue and black models, they differ only upon close examination, and then in the sun. In Russia there will be one more color – gray, it differs markedly from these two.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The case is standard, on the front and back of Corning Gorilla Glass 5, the side frame is aluminum with chrome plating. There are few differences from the Xperia 5, and I can tell from the experience of my son, who beats phones all the time, that that device has withstood almost a year. There are scratches on the metal, but in general it looks exactly the same as at the very beginning of the path. The machine turned out to be reliable, resistant to falls.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The glossy case is easily soiled, so you will need to dress it up in a case. Especially for this model, in addition to the standard cases, a black case with a leg will be available. The angle is not adjustable, but it looks rather massive and makes the device not so thin.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

If it were my will, I would have made the glass matte, then no cover would be needed, and the smartphone could be carried just like that. Please note that, unlike many models from different manufacturers, here the camera unit does not protrude at all, it is made flush with the body (the tongue does not turn to call a slight elevation a protrusion, especially against the background of the same Note20 Ultra).

Sony’s trademark is that a separate key was added for the camera on the side, a kind of combination of the world of cameras and phones, as for me, it’s very convenient. I pressed the button and take a photo, those who wish can customize everything for themselves, which is also convenient. Now there is also a call key for the voice assistant. And here, probably, there is a certain homely truth that few people say “Ok Google” when the smartphone is just lying on the table, usually it is in their hands, which means that you can press a key. And even with a locked screen, although here you need to check what exactly he can look for in this case, whether there will be access to your data.

The fingerprint sensor is not in the screen, also on the side. Works fast and well.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

What I’ve always liked about Sony is the way the tray for SIM cards is made, there are, by the way, two of them, as well as a memory card (alas, the slot is combined). You do not need a paper clip to reach the tray, all operations are easy to do with your fingers anywhere. The device does not have an eSIM, alas, until Sony added this feature.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

A system of several microphones allows you to suppress external noises, you can also turn on the setting for suppressing wind noise (just more power consumption, the sound quality does not change).

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

At the presentation, a lot was said about why two stereo speakers should be facing in the same direction, namely at you. In this case, it is impossible to cover them with your hands, if you hold the device on weight, the sound is also distributed better, there is no distortion, as in the case when the speakers look in different directions.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

But that’s not all about sound! Drumroll! At the top there is a 3.5 mm jack; this is a triumphant return of a connector that many already call outdated. That Sony clearly recognized the desire of many people to have such a connector is commendable. But something else surprises even more, the company knows how to make excellent players and relied on that this device also sounds good. The 3.5 mm jack was made “low-noise”, all the electronics are on the board, signal losses are minimal. And this makes this device interesting for those who like to listen to music.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

I had the opportunity to listen to the Xperia 5 II on Sony WH1000-XM4 on-ear headphones, the sound is very pleasant. Since the music was unfamiliar to me, I don’t presume to draw any conclusions, but first impressions are very encouraging, this device can be considered a contender for the title of a music smartphone with good sounding. There is also support for 360 Reality Audio, uncompressed file formats, which is traditional for the company. Plus the proprietary DSEE technology has received an update, a different algorithm is used that restores sound from compressed files with high compression and makes it cleaner and more enjoyable.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

I don’t see any point in talking about standard Dolby Atmos, it is here and works the same way as always. A short list of technologies in audio shows how interesting this device is in this aspect.

But the hardware has also changed a lot inside. Since a chipset with high heat dissipation is used, the cooling system was made on the basis of graphene films (the same is in the Note20 Ultra and a number of Samsung flagships). This is the latest fashion among engineers, they are betting on graphene films.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

But! In addition, the smartphone uses a unique power scheme at the iron level. When you play “heavy” toys that are demanding on graphics and are connected to a charger, the battery stops charging, power is directly supplied to the board. This is done in order not to create additional heating of the device, which means not to start lowering the processor frequency. It turns out that the Heat Supression technology controls the heating of the device and does it well.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The dimensions of the smartphone are such that it is easy to operate it with one hand, there are no big differences from the previous Xperia 5, they are perceived the same. And this is what the novelty looks like against the background of the flagship Xperia 1 II.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

Nicely made body, albeit easily soiled. The perception of this device is at a good level, whatever one may say, this is the level of flagships.

Display

The technical specifications of the screen are as follows: 6.1 inches, FullHD + (21: 9), OLED, automatic brightness control, AlwaysOn Display, Corning Gorilla Glass 5, HDR, 120 Hz.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

Briefly about the impressions – the screen is excellent, bright, even in the sun.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The 120Hz frequency is felt, there is no adaptive mode, you can enable it for all applications (where supported) or just disable this option. Overall, the display experience is very good. Not Samsung, but the level of the same flagships from Apple.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The fact that the screen is narrow, however, allows you to split it into two parts, run two applications simultaneously. But working on such a screen in two places is already more difficult. Therefore, this is more of pampering than a real necessity.

Камеры

Leaving aside a bunch of marketing terms, you can find a description of the modules in the table above. But I will say the following: in the normal photo mode you get standard images, you cannot say that they amaze the imagination. In Pro mode, there are already more settings and possibilities, you can save in RAW, there is eye tracking and many other chips.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

Take a look at a small number of photos and a short video. In the review, you will need to look at how this device shoots.

Sample video (MP4, 61 MB) >>>


Impressions

The Sony example proves that sometimes problems that arise become the engine for creating something new, something that other companies do not have. The Xperia 5 II is very unusual, it focuses not only on photography, as in the previous device, not only on compactness, but also on sound quality. This is a device that can in the full sense be called an attempt to revive the Walkman brand, so meticulously was the sound. And this is very interesting. Inside there are many chips that other companies do not have, the device turned out to be interesting, and it has its own face.

The cost is 70 thousand rubles, with pre-order from September 17 to October 18, you will receive TWS-headphones WF-XB700 as a gift. Let me remind you that the cost of the flagship Xperia 1 II is 80 thousand rubles. The difference in cost is not overwhelming, you need to understand and meticulously study which one suits you best if you decide to stay with Sony.

As for me, the Xperia 5 II has every chance of becoming a cult smartphone for everyone who likes to listen to high-quality music, but is not ripe for buying an expensive player. For example, here’s a model for 180 thousand rubles.

First look at the compact flagship Sony Xperia 5 II (Xperia 5 Mark II)

The price of the Xperia 5 II is on par with the usual Galaxy S20, with which they have a lot in common. But in terms of perception, these are completely different devices, and it cannot be said that one is better than the other in everything, or vice versa. Everyone will be able to find something of their own in them, and the uniqueness of Sony makes it unusual and deduces from direct comparison with other models. And I think that this uniqueness is worth the money.

As soon as the samples arrive, let’s start preparing the review. Follow the news in our Telegram channel so as not to miss this material! You can subscribe to it here.

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