Sony Xperia Pro Review: Built For The Crew, Priced For The Stars
com cameras. I use them every day. I rely on them, i even like a few, but what i’ve never liked is how making the most of a camera involves, buying tons of accessories, most notoriously external monitors. In fact, i have a distinct memory of buying this monitor at b, h and being surrounded by a sea of monitors and the accessories the monitors needed and thinking about all the cash i was gon na have to splash for all the accessories the monitors needed and The monitors themselves – and i remember thinking right in the middle of the store – this is stupid. Why can’t? I just use my phone for this. Well, it took a few years, but finally, someone built a smartphone that can pull double duty as a monitor, not only that it also serves as a standalone studio to send 4k footage over 5g live the sony xperia pro is the long awaited companion to the xperia 1 mark ii that i reviewed last summer and i’ve spent the last 10 days, seeing whether it’s one of a kind experience can justify its heart stopping price tag. Okay, so from a hardware and performance standpoint, the xperia pro is basically a repackaged xperia one mark ii with some components like the 4k display and triple cameras copy pasted wholesale. So if you want to get a sense of how this device performs as a smartphone i’ll point you to that older review, where the pro departs from its predecessor, it does so dramatically get a load of this casing.
To start with, the glossy glass is gone replaced by a black polycarbonate that feels almost as reassuringly tough to the touch as sony’s camera bodies. Do it feels like the piece of photo equipment it is. You can toss it into a camera bag and between the plastic on the back and the gorilla glass 6 on the front. Basically not worry about it. It’S like having a case built right in and sony had more than one reason for choosing polycarbonate for the chassis and it wasn’t wireless charging, which has weirdly, been omitted from the pro to hear sony tell it. It can sometimes be easier to work with plastic than glass if you want the best 5g reception possible, sony’s, really proud of its beamforming antennas on this model, and given what testing i was able to do on verizon’s millimeter wave network in new york city, the pride Seems justified, a millimeter wave is the finickiest form of 5g, and, while verizon has significantly built out its footprint since i last tested it, the nature of millimeter wave is just not going to change speeds and reception still vary substantially. When i move even a few feet, so sony included something helpful here called a network. Visualizer that’s meant to help you orient yourself toward the nearest 5g node, so you can maintain a connection when you need it now. It does look like an engineering test tool with a hasty consumer friendly ui slapped on and it takes a little getting used to, but so far it’s.
The only example i’ve seen of a manufacturer trying to make this flavor of 5g easier for the end user to utilize and sony deserves kudos. For that. The other big change on this hardware is what sony’s calling a world’s first, a dedicated hdmi input right next to the usb port. Now to be clear, you don’t need a port of any kind for a phone to serve as a monitor. Most camera manufacturers offer apps that use wi, fi, direct or bluetooth to do mostly the same thing: it’s the input part of the hdmi label that’s critical here. This is what allows you to take the footage from your camera and broadcast it via the phone live at up to 4k resolution to help me test that sony sent over what can only be described as a youtube creator’s fantasy review kit, alongside the review phone itself. I was able to spend 10 days with another a7s3 mirrorless camera companion to the one i just bought. A 20 millimeter g master lens and all the cables cages and clamps i’d need to mount the phone to the right, and it took maybe two seconds for the relief to register. Once i replaced my clunky small hd monitor with its heavy battery with the xperia pro’s positively petite, 10 millimeter thickness and 225 gram mass. All you do is connect the cable use, the new dedicated hotkey to open the app and bam your phone becomes. A 4k oled studio monitor for your camera.
I shot most of my galaxy s21 review video using the xperia pro. As my monitor and uh. There were a lot of pluses to take away. Colors were almost perfect. The oled contrast was as sharp as ever and despite being something like 80 thinner than my small hd monitor with its huge honking battery after two straight hours of filming with the screen on the entire time, i still had 50 battery left in the xperia pro that’s. Basically, twice the duration i get with my monitor and a nice side effect of having a dedicated hdmi port is that the usb c port, alongside it remains available. If you want to plug in a battery pack to keep filming. Unfortunately, the experience wasn’t without its hang ups, due to what i first thought was a bad hdmi, cable and now believe was probably a loose hdmi port. The app would crash constantly if i jostled the camera at all. Sometimes i didn’t even need to do that. The app just crashed by the way, and even when the app runs well it’s missing features that videographers have come to expect like the ability to record footage separately from the camera and waveforms to calibrate the image and things like focus, peaking that’s. The false color applied to an image to help you see if it’s in focus or not none of that is here and sony couldn’t even commit to those features coming in the future. The fanciest thing you can do with the phone as a monitor is pinch to zoom, not very pro.
You know, sony’s also leaning heavily on the fact that this is a 4k display to make it worth it. You know, i mean sure, it’s nice to be able to get right up onto it without seeing pixels, but if i’m getting that close i’m just going to use the camera’s viewfinder, also you’re, almost never using the whole panel because of its tall aspect, ratio and i’d Gladly trade down to something closer to hd. If it meant a screen, i could actually see in bright daylight for the use cases. Sony is pushing with 5g broadcast from anywhere. I don’t think that popping and dropping the same panel from the one mark ii was the way to go ditto for duplicating the year old, snapdragon 865, by the way, if you think i’m picking a few too many nits, given the one of a kind functionality here, I might agree if the phone was launching at the price point. We’Ve all been expecting around fifteen hundred dollars, but sony thinks the xperia pro is worth more a thousand dollars more and i’ll. Show you why the company thinks that, after a word from a sponsor who can help take the sting out of that premium price, this video is sponsored by sellsell.com, which isn’t just another used phone marketplace see when you punch in your old device’s details at sellsell.com. It compares buyback prices from over 40 mobile tech trading companies. That means two things one. You save a lot of time, you’d, otherwise have spent cross shopping and two you’re guaranteed to always get the most cash for your old electronics, in fact, they’re so serious about that promise that if you find a higher price anywhere else, cellsell.
com will pay you double the Difference, don’t settle for less than your old devices are truly worth hit. The link in the description and get the most for your trade in today, thanks to cellcell.com for sponsoring this video live video streaming, usually from a webcam or a phone’s front facing camera. It looks like this serviceable but kind of flat kind of blown out low res looking, even if it’s, not not that great. In other words, so you can see the appeal of using a proper dslr camera with a nice piece of glass. Instead, just check out the interview i did on super last week with jason nellis, whose sony a6500 and sigma 30 millimeter really trounced my macbook pro webcam thanks again, jason just understand i’m, really vain. I mean my vanity now on paper that’s. What makes the xperia pro 5g so cool, because today, if you don’t have this phone and you want to go stream – live footage from your dslr over a cellular connection. You need a modem to do that, for you, then not just a modem, but also an encoder to properly format the video, when you consider that those alone stack up to about two grand just for that equipment, not counting a separate monitor, which you will need all The accessories to power that monitor well, then, it gets a little easier to see why sony thinks 2500. is a fair price for the xperia pro, which does 4k over 5g in a package that doubles as a monitor and fits in a pocket it’s also a pretty Good smartphone, if you can get past the comically terrible vibration, motor Music, you know i get it if i were sony i’d want to charge top dollar for this too, because it really is a crazy confluence of multi purpose tools in one package, and it can even Do more than what i’ve shown you here like transfer files over ftp and use usb tethering, etc.
But if you’ve been watching my videos for the past two years, you know what i’m gon na say about 5g millimeter wave. Those networks are still barely built and they’re. Incredibly, inconsistent while most streaming platforms still don’t support 4k and they’re. Also just finicky with external cameras it’s just not going to happen for me, is it stream yard was straight up unable to detect the camera. Even when i tried several versions of chrome and microsoft edge, i had more luck with stream labs which actually got the camera feed, but for some reason it botched the youtube streams that i tried on the street. I got to give thanks to sony, which was kind enough to give me extra time with the device to iron out these issues, but the problems persisted right up to the day before this review. So if you’re a mr mobile subscriber the xperia pro probably isn’t for you, i knew that back when it was announced, but i’ve been eager to show it to all of you anyway, because i thought maybe it was a phone for me for prosumer youtubers. In other words, but sony has priced this thing for the buying departments of tv networks that cover nfl games at stadiums with 5g networks, it’s a sensible strategy and i’m sure the videographers down in the field will appreciate the streamlined gear their companies paid for, but as A creator who shoots mostly on sony and could have made daily use out of a fully baked 1500 version of the xperia pro this 2500 device that lacks key features and bases its value proposition on a 5g technology that has yet to prove it’s worth the hype.
More than anything else, it just feels like a missed opportunity. This review was produced following a week and a half with a pre production xperia pro 5g review sample running pre, release software on loan from sony and tested on verizon. As always, the manufacturer had no editorial input or copy approval concerning this content. Sony is seeing this for the first time right alongside you. Please subscribe to the mr mobile on youtube.