Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true


A powerful smartphone that takes beautiful snapshots to share instantly is the dream for most users, but the reality in their pockets can often be disappointing.

Step forward Sony’s new Xperia 5 IV – it may just be the holy grail snap-happy people may be seeking.

The fourth edition of Xperia 5 is powered by the fast Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Mobile Platform chipset with a hefty working memory of 8 gigabytes and 256GB storage.

It's 6.1-inch wide, 21:9 format display using a 120-Hertz OLED panel with a 2,520x1,080 pixel resolution serves as a perfect viewfinder for both still photos and videos.

Enthusiasts will love that Sony has packed Xperia 5 IV with the advanced photography technology it developed for its famous Alpha series cameras. Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true

With a ZEISS-quality lens calibrated specially for this smartphone and its Exmor RS sensors, the new Xperia 5 IV can make snapping and sharing a joyful experience.

The smartphone camera comes with three lenses and three focal lengths, each with a 12-megapixel resolution. For ultrawide focuses of 16mm, it uses a 1/2.5-inch Exmore RX sensor, a 1/1.7-inch sensor for a 24mm standard focal length and a 1/3.5-inch sensor for a tele-focal length of 60mm. Each lens is bright with a wide aperture of F1.7 to F2.4.

The smartphone comes packed with Sony’s own photography software called Photo Pro, which offers two modes – Basic and Auto/P/SM modes.

In most cases, you can use the Basic mode to snap regular photos or clips, but if you want to be more creative and produce high-quality clips or pics, you can opt for the Auto/P/S/M modes. Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true

For the Basic mode, the software uses AI technology to detect scenes and lighting conditions before it adjusts shooting parameters automatically. The AI can choose from shooting formats like gourmet, macro, soft snap, infant, backlight portrait, backlight, night portrait, night scene, low light, landscape and spotlight and display the respective icon on the screen.

While testing the Xperia 5 IV, I found that it managed to easily capture top-quality shots using Basic mode. It effectively handled difficult backlit conditions effectively capturing dark subjects clearly with a brightly lit background.

The Auto/P/S/M modes were also fun, as they turn the phone’s display into a large viewfinder with control buttons on the right for horizontal shooting.

However, the buttons take up almost half of the screen if you try to take a vertical picture.

The Auto mode is much like the Basic mode when it comes to AI detecting scene types and automatically adjusting shooting parameters, though the Auto mode gives you more control.

For instance, you can use the control panel on the right-hand side to select between single-shot autofocus (AF) and continuous AF.

You can also choose between a wide and centre focus, as well as the drive mode, which offers single and continuous shooting both in high and low quality, self-timer and HDR continuous shooting.

While testing, I used the continuous shooting Hi mode to capture shots of flying seagulls. Normally, it’s difficult to capture clear, in-focus shots of flying birds, but I used the continuous shooting mode to capture bursts of images before selecting those that caught the birds in focus with bright colours.

Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true If you are an experienced photographer, you will enjoy the P/S/M modes or Programme auto, Shutter speed priority and Manual exposure.

The P mode gives you more control compared to the Auto mode. For instance, you can select a white balance and ISO setting. You can even select a metering mode among multi, centre and spot modes of light metering, as well as adjust the exposure value to make the image brighter or darker.

In S mode, you select the shutter speed and the camera will adjust the rest of the parameters for you or you can try to set some parameters.

The M mode is more advanced as the Xperia 5 IV gives you full control from shutter speed to other parameters.

Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true The smartphone is also capable of shooting 4K HDR video at a high frame rate of 120fps and also comes with a 12MP front camera with an f2.0 lens for beautiful selfies.

Its display with a native refresh rate of 120 Hertz is very good for enjoying movies and playing games.

The display function comes with Motion Blur Reduction technology that reduces the blurriness of fast-moving pictures and the phone also comes with a Game Enhancer function that helps adjust various settings so you can play graphics-intensive games smoothly.

The phone also comes with three apps for video and music creators. Music Pro lets you record and edit your compositions like you are in a studio, while the Cinema Pro and Video Pro apps allow you to shoot and edit your clips like a pro.

The Xperia 5 IV can also function as a high-quality digital music player, capable of playing high-resolution audio (Hi-Res Audio) formats.

Tech Review: Sony Xperia 5 IV: Every budding photographer’s dream come true I played the old Eagles classic “Hotel California” in Flac 24bit/192kHz Hi-Res Audio format, using Audio-Technica ATH-ANC700BT headphones that support Hi-Res Audio and heard it delivered with clarity, good details and deep bass.

The CPU chipset of the phone is really fast thanks to its eight cores, one running at 3GHz, three at 2.50 GHz and the remaining four at 1.79GHz, according to Geekbench 5 benchmarking app. The app reported that the phone has a single-core score of 1,146 and a multi-core score of 3,311.

As a smartphone, Sony Xperia 5 IV runs on the Android 12 operating system and supports the 5G network.

Its large 5,000mAh battery is packed with fast-charging technology which has the phone getting a 50% charge in 30 minutes.

Sony Xperia 5 IV has a suggested retail price of 39,990 baht, though early birds will get wireless LinkBuds S worth 7,490 baht or an 8,000 baht discount. The offer is only valid until November 30.

Key specs

OS: Android 12

Networks: 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G

CPU: Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Mobile Platform

Memory: 8GB RAM

Storage: 256 GB UFS

Rear camera: Triple cameras with 12MP resolution each with f1.7, f2.2 and f2.4 lens

Front camera: 12MP with f2.0 lens

Display: 6.1-inch 120hz OELD panel with 2520x1080 pixel resolution

Battery: 5000mAh

Dimensions: 156x67x8.2 mm

Weight: 172g