Sony Xperia 1 review: smartphone in 21: 9 with 4K HDR OLED display

The Sony Xperia 1 is definitely a smartphone destined to go down in history for being the first to present a OLED display with aspect ratio (also called aspect ratio) in 21: 9. But it will justify the cost beyond that 800 euros?

Aesthetically we are faced with a device very similar to the younger brother Sony Xperia 10 Plus, the relationship sought by the company leads to the creation of a device with elongated shapes and a consequent difficulty in holding it firmly in your hands. The dimensions speak of 167 x 72 x 8.2 mm thick, with a total weight of 178 grams. The back cover is made entirely of glass, on the edges we find all the connectivity: above it slot for the two nano SIMs or the microSD + nano SIM, on the right side the on / off button, the volume, the sensor for the fingerprints and the action key, the USB Type-C 3.1 (absent the 3.5mm jack).

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Sony Xperia 1: technical characteristics

The display is the real protagonist of the smartphone, we are faced with the first 4K HDR OLED to the world (for mobile devices) with extremely high color accuracy and use of the same technology seen directly on the large Bravia HDR screens. Technically it is a Cinemawide 21: 9 with resolution 1644 x 3840 pixels and actual size of 6.5 inches (the bezels are really very thin), as well as protection Gorilla Glass 6; quality is very highclearly for the aspect ratio you need to get used to it, but once you get used to it, the results that can be obtained are incredible (even higher than the widespread AMOLED).

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The processor is the top performing top of the range of the moment, Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, an unrivaled octa-core in December 2019. Do you want a smartphone with which you can open all applications, games or even start two at the same time? the Sony Xperia 1 he is unbeatable, he will do everything without showing even the slightest hesitation.

The sensor for unlocking with your fingerprint has been placed on the right side of the device, its functioning is not perfect, but personally I am not never found good with such a positioning. It will be because I’m left-handed, or because I’m used to it differently, I deeply love the sensor under the display, on the central home button or if really integrated into the back cover. In any case, it is present unlock with the face in 2D (and it works perfectly).

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Internal memory is from 128GB (expandable up to 512GB with microSD, but giving up a SIM) with ben 6GB of RAM.

Concluding the general technical specifications are WiFi connectivity, bluetooth 5.0, GPS, NFC and USB Type C 3.1, flanked by accelerometer, ambient light, barometric, Hall, proximity, step detection and RGB LEDs for notifications, to finish with the certifications IP68 and IP65 against liquids and dust.

Sony Xperia 1: the cameras, the real stars of the smartphone

Let’s focus on the real ones star of the Sony Xperia 1, le 3 cameras placed one under the other and slightly raised with respect to the back cover. The company wanted to concentrate in this aspect all the good things it has done over the years with the Alpha series mirrorless cameras; here then comes the Bionz X processor adapted to mobile (with eye focus, auto focus / exposure and continuous shooting up to 10fps), double photodiode technology for faster autofocus even in low light, to finish with one stabilization combined between optical and electronic in the hope of achieving the best results.

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The sensors are all from 12 megapixelsprecisely a 26mm Exmor RS, 1 / 2.6 ″ wide and aperture F1.6; in effect it is a wide angle from 78 ° with super slowmotion even up to 960fps. At its side we find the component versatile from 16mm1 / 3.4 ″ width and aperture F2.4as well as angle of 45 °. Concludes the rear trio lo zoom from 52mm1 / 3.4 “width, 5-axis stabilization, F2.4 opening and angle from 130 °.

A simple one was placed at the front 8 megapixels with sensor from 1/4 ″and openness F2.0; good quality, without standing out compared to what we find on the market.

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Their combination offers very interesting results in all light conditions, both in dark environments and on bright days (also passing through real houses with artificial light). We can’t talk about quality superior to the top of the range, today there are many fantastic smartphones with incredible sensors, but we are a very high levels. Each shot features optical zoom until 2x with the possibility of digital zoom to 5xcontinuous shots are up to 10fps.

Small problems in the stabilization of the video (already seen with Sony Xperia 10 Plus), the maximum achievable quality is the 4K to 24fps, but in this case the electronic makes the recovery slightly “jerky” and not really beautiful to see. The advice, to get smoother and much better videos, is to turn towards the FullHD to 60fps; the results are at the level of very high-end smartphones.

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The other difficulty in making videos in 21: 9 (such as Instagram stories), concerns the impossibility of normal smartphones or screens to view everything in its entirety. The greater aspect ratio is improve because it represents the native format of the videos and allows you to start two applications with split display, but remember that when you watch videos on YouTube, much of it will be unused, as it is generally recorded at a maximum of 16: 9.

Sony Xperia 1: special features, software and battery

Aware of having made a smartphone that is difficult to hold (although it is very light And very thin), Sony he thought about inserting the so-called side sensor; the edges have a sensor which, by double pressing, allows access to the menu with artificial intelligence (independently selects the apps to be included in relation to the most used). In addition to this, the swipe from bottom to top and vice versa can also be customized, by default they are set to return to the main screen or activate the menu to split the screen. The operation it can be very convenient for ideal use with one hand, being an absolute novelty you have to get used to it and understand how to access it quickly; the space to touch is very thinthere are more times we touch the actual display than the desired sensor.

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Very useful the action key on the right side of the smartphone, by keeping the pressure you access the camerabut the actions are customizable (same for double-tapping the on / off button).

The operating system is Android 9 updated with patches from October 2019, software customization is always the classic of Sony Xperia smartphones. The battery is from 3300mAh, without wireless charging, but with support for fast charging 3.0; according to our texts, with a quiet use they can also be achieved 48 hours without plugging it into the wall outlet. On stressful days, however, you will be able to easily arrive in the evening without particular difficulties.

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Small note to the effort made for the audio quality reproduction, really a dolby atmos with codec support Qualcomm Aptx respectable (speaker stereo) and with results decidedly above the average of devices in the same sector.

Xperia 1: negatives and positives

In conclusion the Sony Xperia 1 convinces first of all for the desire to make improvements and a breath of fresh air in a sector that is really by now saturated of terminals all very similar to each other. The only problem is perhaps the price, over 800 euros still for a model that you have to get used to to take full advantage of it, perhaps it makes many of us turn up their noses. Among the positive aspects we find:

  • Display And audio of superior quality.
  • The processor is the absolute top of the moment, better on the market cannot be found.
  • Triple camera rear with technology applied on Sony Alpha with incredible results.
  • Optimal size for everyday use, maybe slightly long due to 21: 9.
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Between negativesinstead:

  • Sensor for fingerprints uncomfortable on the side of the smartphone, it has not been integrated into the on / off button, but it is a personal taste.
  • It is not possible activate the wide angle when video recording has already started, you will need to turn it off, change sensor and then start recording again (it is possible instead from normal to zoom).
  • Stabilization in 4K slightly jerky, much better in FullHD at 60fps.
  • Side sensor overall useful, but difficult to understand its use and acquire the required dexterity.

For more information, to get to know the Sony Xperia 1 told, here it is our video review inserted below.

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