Sony Xperia 1 iii review: In a world of its own
For quite some time. Its success has been middling, but at the top level it still wants to push its phones as a prosumer device, its looking to its alpha cameras in a market thats. Now dominated by ai instead of manual controls, so does the xperia 1 3 get the balance right, im kam bunsen from pocketlint, and this is our review and while youre here, if you could hit the like button, subscribe and tap the notification bell, that would be excellent. At first glance, the sony xperia 1 mark iii doesnt look hugely different to the mark ii theres, a slight difference in dimensions, but the big difference. Youll notice is the finish. The xperia 1 mark 3 has a matte finish. That removes the glossy look to the rear of the phone saving you from fingerprints and smears, while the whole package looks more sophisticated than the phone before it. Theres gorilla, glass victus, which is cornings toughest grade of glass. Currently, while were recording this on the front and on the back and the matte black looks really good its tighter more precise and it holds on to waterproofing too, while retaining stereo speakers and a three and a half millimeter headphone socket. It also holds onto a side mounted fingerprint scanner, which now sits above a google assistant button recessed into the frame, so that, if you dont want to use it youll likely never press it and forget that its there. The fingerprint scanner works pretty well too, but it can be a struggle in the wet and we found ourselves being told that theres been too many failed unlocks and having to wait 30 seconds before trying again.
This is down to the handling of the phone and it registering accidental touches theres a dedicated camera button too, allowing you to launch the camera and use it to take photos, a hallmark of sonys top devices for many years, its a big phone, yes, and as with Sonys other recent devices. It has a 21×9 aspect ratio display to try and keep those diagonal inches without getting too wide itll be a little long for some pockets, which is why sony also offers the xperia 5, which offers similar experience, but in a smaller package. Now onto display – and this is where the xperia 1 mark 3 really does stand out, at least when you read the specs. Not only does it have that 21 by 9 aspect ratio, but its 4k resolution 2 capable of pushing plenty of pixels with higher density than rival devices. That display has 120 hertz refresh rates, although you have the option to turn it off and revert to 60 hertz, which will save you battery life. It also supports hdr, so fire up, netflix and youll find those hdr labels in place, ensuring youre getting the best experience. You can now does the 4k resolution make a big difference and the answer is no not really its not hugely different to other flagship devices in terms of visual performance plus many apps simply dont use the resolution on offer and many video services and games dont either. One of the good things about the display, though, is that theres no notch or punch hole here to distract you as the front camera sits in the bezel at the top of the display, and really we dont mind that its only a small sliver of a bezel To the top and the bottom and thats actually an advantage when youre playing games with the phone in landscape orientation.
Now all the spec high points do make for a great display, though we love the size and the aspect and the flat finish has advantages over curves and the color tone is good, too theres even an option to revert to sonys creator mode, which is designed to Look more natural – and this does look really good, particularly when watching movies. Many will find this a bit too muted for daily use, but theres an auto mode, so the natural effect can be used in certain apps. So you dont have wildly vibrant video content now, as for hardware and performance and sony is right up there with the top devices, with the qualcomm snapdragon 8 and 12 gigabytes of ram putting this phone in the top tier thats noticeable in performance too, because it feels Slick and fast seamlessly flipping from task to task and delivering without the stutter theres 256 gigabytes of storage, but it still offers micro, sd for storage expansion and thats, something of a rarity in flagship devices. These days, games run smoothly too, with the option to select top settings and get a great result. Sony pushes its game enhancer to boost the experience, but it isnt the best such system out there. The key thing it misses is the ability to lock gesture navigation, so youll be playing a game and youll swipe out of it by mistake and to make things worse. Youll then find that the auto brightness then immediately changes, meaning you return to your game and the screen will be really dim.
You can lock gesture navigation by using the competition set, but then you have to turn that off to be able to exit a game now at four and a half thousand milliamp hours, the battery isnt the biggest out there, its not the smallest either. In fact, its quite a typical capacity, but in light use youll easily get over 24 hours from it. So you can spend a night away from a charger and likely be fine. The 30 watt charging wired isnt the fastest either, but you do get that 30 watt charger in the box for a fairly quick top up well, wireless charging is also supported for extra convenience onto cameras, and this is where sony takes a lot of influence from its Alpha camera range wanting to append that pro label to its camera experience. We criticized this positioning before because we cant see that adding complexity to the camera experience gives any real benefit to most users, especially with some of the best experiences coming from computational photography. Rather than attempting to do something that a proper camera does, however, sonys makeup is smart and there are some things we fundamentally like about it, because theres no junk lenses thrown in each is good in its own right and what is actually quite fantastic. Is that all three of the main lenses are 12 megapixels, so theres, no messing about with different sensor sizes and megapixel counts its all very consistent, its the telephoto thats interesting, because not only is it a periscope telephoto, but it has two focal lengths, 70 millimeters and 105 thats 2.
9 times and 4.4 times. This has been achieved by moving the lens elements within the periscope lens assembly. So, rather than needing two zoom cameras on the back of the phone sony can do it with one. The downside of the arrangement is that theres, no pinch, do me across these optical steps. So if you zoom in the main camera you hit 2.9 times and then stop, you then have to tap the 2.9 times icon to switch lenses and the process repeats. One of the great things that sony has implemented from its camera range, however, is object. Tracking by default. You can tap on object to track it. This is clever because it will aim to keep a particular subject in focus, even if its moving now we said all the lenses are good and they are. The ultra wide is great and avoids the sort of blurring you find on cheaper phones, although it can be slightly muted compared to the main camera and the zoom is less rich than either of those two and because sony is trying to push its manual modes and Professional settings it misses out on doing things like giving you a proper simple night mode and the portrait selfie modes edge detection is so poor. It makes that feature barely worth using the same pro treatment is taken on video 2 with a completely separate app called cinema. Pro designed to make you feel like a filmmaker choosing your frame rate from 24 to 120p manually, adjusting the focus and such now.
We cant really imagine how small the market of people is that use their phone to shoot video. This way most, we suspect well just flip to the video mode in the main camera app for point and shoot action now. In the end, the sony xperia 1 mark 3 is all the phone that most people will need that big display the premium look and feel, and the smooth running that comes with its top tier hardware is all great. The spec sheet is generous with often dropped features like a three and a half millimeter headphone socket and expandable storage added, so theres a peel there that other flagships have dispensed with couple that with battery performance, thats, good and the lack of a notch. They have a really neat phone, but with phone use, increasingly being defined by experiences, sony has gone down the pro photographer and videographer route, wanting to add sophistication to the cameras enabling it to do lots of things that nobody wants, while struggling to do the things that Everyone wants and thats been the story for some time with sonys phone, so while theres lots on offer here in the xperia one mark iii theres competition – that excels in some of the areas where it lacks from a phone thats priced at the top of the pile Too its hard to justify when compared to what youll find from the likes of samsung ive been cam. Let me know what you think of this phone in the comments down below or reach me on social media im at cam bunton.
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