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Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium review

Introduction

The third-gen Premium comes with Sony’s first dual camera, a larger 5.8-inch display that is still 4K, and a due upgrade in the internals, all in a chunky package. Let’s see if the Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium is worthy of its name.

Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium review

The display certainly appears to be – Sony pioneered 4K smartphone displays with the Z5 Premium and some three years later it remains the only maker to offer the impossibly high resolution. This time around, it’s grown a bit – 5.8 inches in diagonal vs. the two previous generations 5.5 inches. So only 765ppi then.

And isn’t the Premium just the perfect vehicle for Sony’s first dual camera? Joining the familiar 19MP shooter is a secondary 12MP one – this one sees the world in black and white with a large 1/2.3″ sensor, big 1.55m pixels, and bright f/1.6 aperture.

Perhaps the third most important bit about the XZ2 Premium would fall in the cons section, however, and that’s before we even unpack it – its size and weight are topping the charts, and not really in a good way.

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, 1,22m pixel size; f/1.8 aperture, 25mm equivalent lens. Secondary 12MP black &white, 1/2.3″ sensor, 1.55m 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, 720p@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.

By this point, there are hardly any surprises in the rest of the hardware. There’s the Snapdragon 845 in charge of number crunching, 6GB is plenty of RAM and the 64GB of storage can be expanded by up to… well, the largest capacity card you’d be willing to pay for. There’s no 3.5mm jack which isn’t out of the ordinary anymore and neither is the IP rating for dust and water protection, though one of these is bad and the other’s pretty great.

Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium unboxing

The phone comes in an understated gray box with a big X printed on it and a shiny ‘Xperia’ logo etched onto the lid – gone are the colorful boxes of the early Xperia Xs. Inside, other than the phone itself, you’ll find an AC adapter that’s Qualcomm QuickCharge 3.0 and Mediatek Pump Express+ 2.0 compliant and is rated at 5V/2.7A, 9V/1.8A, and 12V/1.35A. There’s a USB-A to USB-C cable to go with it too.

Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium review

A USB-C to 3.5mm jack adapter is also included so you can connect your legacy headphones despite the legacy-free wired connectivity port selection. Our ‘special’ reviewers’ bundle didn’t have a headset included, but some retail packages do pack a pair of earbuds – oddly enough, with a 3.5mm connector at the tail end, go figure.