The Sony Xperia 1 IV is easily one of my favorite smartphone in 2022. There are plenty for me to love about the phone, from it’s superb handling expereince to it’s remarkable camera system that gives user all the settings and controls they need to capture the shots they truly desired.
However, it’s S$1,969 asking price in the local market is likely a major obstacle for those on a tighter budget. Thankfully, Sony has a more affordable model in store – Xperia 5 IV – which packs all the best features of the Xperia 1 IV while maintaining a (slightly) more accessible price point.
Sony Xperia 5 IV: Design & Design
I have always been a big fan of compact smartphones such as the ASUS Zenfone 8 (Review) as these devices not only offer excellent in-hand feel, but is also perfect for users like me who love to use their smartphone single-handedly. However, there aren’t many compact-sized options in the market especially after Apple decided to put and end to it’s rather short-lived Mini lineup. This is where the Sony Xperia 5 IV comes in to fill the gap.
The Xperia 5 IV adopts a taller-than-usual form factor which makes it nice to grip and hold with one hand despite having a significantly larger screen size than other compact models. This is possible as the phone’s display features an unique 21:9 aspect ratio which allows a narrower width by stretching the vertical height of the screen. Thanks to that, users get to enjoy the best of both worlds – big screen and amazing handling experience.
On the outside, the Xperia 5 IV also looks incredibly stylish, donning the company’s signature flat edge design which makes it easily recognizable from other devices. The Black-colored model I’m holding features a smooth matte finish which does a remarkable job in repelling those unsightly smudges that often build up after prolonged usage.
Flipping over to the front, the Xperia 5 IV greets us with a decently-sized 6.1” screen flanked by slim bezel along the sides. Speaking of the screen, it’s based on a premium OLED display featuring a sharp-looking FHD+ screen resolution as well as an ultra-fast 120Hz refresh rate which makes scrolling and animation felt much smoother on the screen.
To sweeten up the deal, the 10-bit HDR display also supports 100% DCI-P3 color gamut coverage to ensure accurate color reproduction when watching your favorite movies and playing your favorite games. Most importantly, the screen also has no issue getting sufficiently bright when using the phone in bright daylight especially when doing outdoor photography.
Sony Xperia 5 IV: Performance
Sitting at the heart of the phone is none other than Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset which never fails to deliver amazing productivity experience with buttery-smooth performance when multi-tasking across multiple apps. Likewise, it also barely stutters even when running more resource-demanding workloads such as high-res video editing which are known to slow smartphones down.
Unlike some of the high-end models, the Sony Xperia 5 IV doesn’t has a dedicated cooling system under the hood. Despite that, I didn’t actually encounter any overheating issue during my long hour gaming sessions other than a slight raise in temperature which doesn’t really affects me, especially when I was deeply focused in the game.
Coming to it’s memory department, the Sony Xperia 5 IV features 8GB worth of RAM and 256GB built-in storage which is probably more than sufficient for an average user or even those who engage heavily in multi-tasking. One interesting to note is that the phone actually supports microSD card for storage expansion just in case you need extra storage capacity for your media contents.
Sony Xperia 5 IV: Cameras
Like any other Sony Xperia flagship phones, mobile photography remains the centerpiece for the Xperia 5 IV. This time round, the phone comes with a versatile triple-lens setup comprising of a trio of 12 megapixels cameras that are capable of handling all sorts of photography from macro to portrait shots.
The main camera uses a 1/1.7” Sony IMX 557 sensor which masters exposure well in varying light conditions, resulting in photos with great clarity and aplenty details regardless whether you’re shooting in a well-lit and dark environment. Likewise, the camera also does an excellent job in preserving sharp and intricate details as the optical lens features an additional layer of ZEISS T* coating that helps to further optimize light efficiency and eliminates lens flare or stray light issues.
Apart from photo quality, another standout feature which Sony Xperia smartphones boast is the wide range of manual settings within the menu layout which provide users with full control over more advanced stuffs like white balance, exposure compensation and metering mode. Simply put, the Sony Xperia smartphones offer the closest experience to a DSLR camera among all the smartphones.
For landscape photography, the Xperia 5 IV has an (almost) equally capable ultra-wide camera that delivers pretty much the same impressive results as the main camera in all lighting conditions. More importantly, the camera also does remarkably well in terms of lens correction which allows photos to look more natural.
Unlike the Sony Xperia 1 IV, the Xperia 5 IV lacks the 85mm – 125mm equivalent telephoto lens for continuous zooming. Instead, it’s fitted with a 60mm telephoto lens which supports 2.5x optical zoom for faraway shots. Beyond that, the phone will rely on digital zooming via it’s main camera for zoomed shots.
Sony Xperia 5 IV: Battery Life
On a typical working day, the Sony Xperia 5 IV’s 5,000mAh battery is able to last through the day with around 30% battery remaining before I head to bed. In fact, I occasionally found myself getting up to 2 days battery life on days when I use the phone sparingly. That’s how enduring the Xperia 5 IV’s battery life is!
Charging-wise, the Xperia 5 IV supports 30W wired charging which takes slightly more than 1.5 hours to fully recharge the phone from 0 – 100%. Just in case you didn’t have that much time to spare, a mere 40 minutes charge is more than enough to provide you with a day’s battery life under normal usage. Also, let’s not forget that the Xperia 5 IV now supports wireless and reverse charging as well.
The Sony Xperia 5 IV is no doubt a proper flagship phone with all the bells and whistles to provide you with the best smartphone experience. It may be true that the phone is nearly a year old, but it’s still rocking some of the best mobile photography features which we’ve yet to see even among recent flagship phones. What’s even better is that the Xperia 5 IV is now cheaper than before, making it the perfect time to purchase this device if you’re actually in the market for a new smartphone.
As far as pricing is concerned, the Sony Xperia 5 IV is currently priced at S$1,449 in Singapore, and is available for purchase through Sony’s official online store.