Notebookcheck

Sony Xperia XZ Smartphone Review

Florian Wimmer (translated by Vinay Pradhan), 11/10/2016

The visionary. Sony wants a revolution: the Xperia XZ aims to change our everyday life. However, with the exception of its 23 MP camera, most of its specifications are quite ordinary. Let us find out what this Sony flagship model is capable of.

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Sony has a vision: connected, smart devices will change our lives. The manufacturer is a little behind the times, as this vision is already becoming reality with the likes of "Smart Homes", Amazon Echo and smart wearables. The new Xperia smartphones are tagged with a big "X" and aim to be part of this new, interconnected world. Thankfully, while moving towards their new goals, Sony has kept true to their old values, such as stylish design, sturdy case, long battery life and good cameras.

The reviews of the Xperia X series (Xperia X, Xperia X Compact, Xperia XA) show that these devices are more reliable than revolutionary. In fact, at times, we liked the predecessors from the Xperia Z5 generation more.

The Xperia XZ can change all this, as it is a high-quality smartphone for 700 Euros (~$763). Most manufacturers do not even dare to put their devices in this price range, as the iPhone 7 and the Galaxy S7 are the undisputed kings of this price class.

The Xperia XZ is the successor to the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium. It not only competes with the high-end devices of Apple and Samsung but also with smartphones like the HTC 10 and, the much cheaper, OnePlus 3. In the following review we will check to see what the Sony flagship model has to offer.

Sony Xperia XZ (Xperia Series)
Graphics adapter
Memory
3072 MB 
Display
5.2 inch 16:9, 1920x1080 pixel 424 PPI, capacitive Touchscreen, IPS, TRILUMINOS display for mobile, Dynamic Contrast Enhancement, X-Reality, glossy: yes
Storage
32 GB eMMC Flash, 32 GB 
, 32GB (Single Sim) / 64GB (Dual Sim), 22.4 GB free
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm, Card Reader: up to 256 GB microSD, 1 Fingerprint Reader, NFC, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: Fingerprint, Accelerometer, Position sensor, Proximity sensor, Barometer, Compass, Color spectrum sensor
Networking
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2, GSM (850/​900/​1,800/​1,900), UMTS (800/​850/​900/​1,700/​1,900/​2,100), LTE (B1/​B2/​B3/​B4/​B5/​B7/​B8/​B12/​B13/​B17/​B19/​B20/​B26/​B28/​B29/​B32/​B38/​B39/​B40/​B41), LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 8.1 x 146 x 72 ( = 0.32 x 5.75 x 2.83 in)
Battery
11 Wh, 2900 mAh Lithium-Ion, Qnovo Adaptive Charging, Talk time 2G (according to manufacturer): 40 h, Talk time 3G (according to manufacturer): 17 h, Standby 2G (according to manufacturer): 610 h, Standby 3G (according to manufacturer): 600 h
Operating System
Android 6.0 Marshmallow
Camera
Primary Camera: 23 MPix Triple-Sensor-Technology, up to ISO 12800, wide-angle 24mm lens, 1/2.3” Exmor RS for mobile Sensor
Secondary Camera: 13 MPix 1/3.06” Exmor RS for mobile image Sensor, 22mm Wide-angle F2.0 lens
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo speakers, Keyboard: virtual keyboard, Charging cable, USB-Charger, Headset, Short manual, What's New, News, Weather, Movie Creator, Sketches, Lounge, Playstatation, AVG Protection, Support, Slide View, 24 Months Warranty, Miracast, DLNA, USB-OTG, MHL; Bandwidth (Download/​Upload): 450Mbps/​50Mbps (LTE); SAR-value: 0.85 W/kg (head), 1.20 W/kg (body), fanless
Weight
161 g ( = 5.68 oz / 0.35 pounds), Power Supply: 42 g ( = 1.48 oz / 0.09 pounds)
Price
700 Euro

 

Case

Sony knows how to make great smartphones. They have a good track record and were ahead of the competition (iPhones) in terms of dust and water protection for their devices. The Sony test model is IP65 / IP68 certified, which means it should be dust- and waterproof. However, Sony still cautions users against taking it for a dip and can only guarantee protection against water spills. Furthermore, the user must let the USB port dry completely before using it to charge the device. As such, we feel that Sony has given up somewhat on their waterproof concept, which is interesting as Apple is just starting to get in the game.

The Sony Xperia XZ is a mix of straight and curved surfaces: Gorilla Glass protects the display, which is curved at the edges, and the back is made of a stylish metal. The color choice for the case is also quite nice, as the predecessors had strange green or brown cases. The test model is available in black with slight burgundy, white or blue tones on the back. The case looks appealing without being ostentatious. Thanks to the curved corners, the phone sits comfortably in the hand. The only disadvantage: all surfaces are very sensitive to fingerprints.

We would expect better sturdiness for 700 Euros (~$763). The Xperia XZ is good, as pressure applied from behind or to the front does not cause display distortions. However, when the smartphone is bent, color artifacts appear on the screen.

Size Comparison

Connectivity

3 GB RAM and 32 GB storage space are not awe-inspiring for 700 Euros (~$763), as the OnePlus 3 (400 Euros, ~$436) can offer double these amounts in both categories. Important wireless features, such as Miracast, DLNA and Bluetooth 4.2 are supported. MHL is also on-board, which means that the user can transform the USB port into an HDMI-out to display content on an external screen. NFC and USB-OTG are also included, so as to allow communication between two devices in close proximity and connect external storage devices via USB.

The automatic headphone optimization determines which headphones are being used and adjusts the sound accordingly. A digital background noise suppression feature should reduce noise levels with appropriate headphones. Sony aims to improve the sound experience with these features.

Sony also promises that the device will get to know its user better as time goes on and this will allow the phone to not only save battery but also increase security and comfort. Some of these features are from the Android OS and are also available on other Android devices.

A dual-SIM model of the Xperia XZ is also available. This is a rarity for high-end devices. Sony sweetens the pot by keeping the price for the dual-SIM model at 699 Euros (~$762). However, if you use two SIM cards, you cannot add a microSD card. The other technical details of the single SIM and dual-SIM smartphones are the same.

Left: flap for microSD and micro-SIM
Left: flap for microSD and micro-SIM
Right: power button with fingerprint sensor, volume rocker and camera key
Right: power button with fingerprint sensor, volume rocker and camera key
Top: 3.5 mm audio jack
Top: 3.5 mm audio jack
Bottom: USB
Bottom: USB

Software

Android 6.0.1 is used for this smartphone. Sony has only changed the icons. Android fans will be at home with this interface. New users of Android will be greeted by an extensive introduction app, which will simplify the process of transferring data from their old smartphone and show how to customize the device.

The Sony album and video apps are well-designed. The video app has a program guide for TV stations, but it cannot play TV shows directly. A remote function would have been nice to have here, but the smartphone does not have an infrared interface. The PlayStation app allows users to access PlayStation 4 Remote Play on the smartphone display or to use the device as a second screen.

Sadly, despite other nice apps for drawing and video editing, Sony has decided to include advertisement apps from Facebook and Amazon. A trial version of a virus scanner app is also included (180 days). We like the Sony Xperia Lounge, which is a customer loyalty app with various great prizes and nice themes.

Communication and GPS

The Sony Xperia XZ is comfortable to use on-the-go, thanks to the great speeds with mobile Internet: 450 MB/s for download and 50 MB/s for upload are produced by the LTE module. These speeds reach LTE Cat. 9 and match the iPhone 7. The list of supported frequencies is quite long: the device offers 20 LTE, 6 UMTS and 4 GSM bandwidths. Once again, the test model can match the offering of the iPhone 7 and should be able to find a network all over the world.

The reception quality of the LTE module is good. In city regions, we were able to access Internet with the extensive Vodafone network. Indoors, we had either full signal strength or 3/4 bars.

The Xperia XZ supports all the traditional and new standards for WLAN, such as, the 5 GHz frequency. We tested the transfer rate with our reference router, a FritzBox 6490 Cable and found out that the Xperia XZ is quite fast, but the iPhone 7 is faster. Our test model is quite good at receiving data, but when it sends data, it is even slower than the OnePlus 3.

Networking
iperf Server (receive) TCP 1 m
Apple iPhone 7
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 128 GB NVMe (5.0 GHz)
451 MBit/s ∼100% +8%
Sony Xperia XZ
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 32 GB eMMC Flash
419 MBit/s ∼93%
OnePlus 3
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
286 MBit/s ∼63% -32%
iperf Client (transmit) TCP 1 m
Apple iPhone 7
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 128 GB NVMe (5.0 GHz)
339 MBit/s ∼100% +151%
OnePlus 3
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
256 MBit/s ∼76% +90%
Sony Xperia XZ
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 32 GB eMMC Flash
135 MBit/s ∼40%
GPS indoors
GPS indoors
GPS outdoors
GPS outdoors

Sadly, the GPS module was not able to locate us indoors. In addition, the module needs a long time to find sufficient satellites to pinpoint the location of the device outdoors. At best, the GPS module can narrow our location down to 4-5 meters, which is good but not great.

To determine how well the smartphone works, we took it for a ride with the professional navigation device, the Garmin Edge 500. We packed the devices in our backpack and took the bike along for an 8 km ride. The devices showed a total deviation of 250 meters, which is fine. The Xperia XZ has fewer measurement points and, as it draws straight lines between them, it appears as if we are flying over forest areas. The professional Garmin GPS does a better job, but for everyday use, the smartphone GPS should suffice.

GPS Garmin Edge 500: overview
GPS Garmin Edge 500: overview
GPS Garmin Edge 500: bridge
GPS Garmin Edge 500: bridge
GPS Garmin Edge 500: forest
GPS Garmin Edge 500: forest
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: overview
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: overview
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: bridge
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: bridge
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: forest
GPS Sony Xperia XZ: forest

Telephone and Speech Quality

In comparison to the standard Google app, Sony has made some tweaks to simplify the interface and is linked closer to the contacts app. The start page now has a search bar for contacts and a list of recent calls.

Sony smartphones are known for their sound. As soon as we made a call, we were impressed by the clear speech quality. However, our microphone is relatively poor: although the person on the other end can hear us even when we whisper, the sound comes across a little dull. The noise reduction feature works well for background noises, but loud noises can reduce the sensitivity of the microphone. All-in-all, the speech quality is quite good.

Discussion

Cameras

Front camera
Front camera

The Sony flagship model wants to show off its cameras, as Sony is one of the biggest manufacturers of camera lenses. The cameras can be ready to capture a picture in 0.6 seconds. The 1/2.3" Exmor RS picture sensor is supposed to produce sharp images and the 24 mm wide-angle lens will provide greater coverage. The BIONZ image processor will provide cleaner images thanks to extensive processing of the details. We were especially intrigued by the color spectrum sensor, which analyses the ambient lighting and adjusts the captured colors to make them as accurate as possible. The Triple-Sensor technology enables the user to take pictures of moving targets and get good night captures. 

The back of the device has a 23 MP camera and the front sports a 13 MP sensor. In terms of resolution, Sony takes the crown: the iPhone 7 cameras offer around half the resolution of our test model. However, resolution is not everything. We were also interested in color accuracy and image sharpness.

In general, the wide-angle lens does allow the user to capture larger expanses. The recordings have a good dynamic even in darker regions and are quite detailed. However, at times, the details in the background or at the borders can come across blurry. We believe this is the photo style which Sony wants to promote, as it is similar to the blur effect of reflex cameras. In comparison, the pictures taken with an iPhone 6S appear sharper and have fewer distortions. The Apple camera modules even produce cleaner borders. The colors of the Sony Xperia XZ are good, but they can tend towards red.

The front camera has a high resolution and also offers a wide-angle objective. The pictures are very good and look sharp. We even liked the colors.

Videos can be recorded with the rear camera in Full HD. The recordings can be done at 60 frames per second. The captured videos are good, as they offer decent sharpness and audio quality. The front camera can also take Full HD videos, but only at 30 frames per second. There is also an app for 4K videos which can produce good video quality.

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the zoom step. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3

We check the color accuracy and sharpness with pre-defined lighting. The Xperia XZ proves to have good color accuracy, but results might appear a little dark. The test chart looks acceptable at first glance, but text on a color background may appear a little blurry. Furthermore, the sharpness drops near the edges.

ColorChecker colors. In the bottom half of each patch, the original colors are shown.
ColorChecker colors. In the bottom half of each patch, the original colors are shown.
Reference card - photo
Reference card - photo
Reference card - details
Reference card - details

Accessories and Warranty

Sony has not put much in the delivery: a compact charger, a USB cable and an in-ear headset, which provides adequate sound.

For roughly 50 Euros (~$54), the user can purchase a "Touch Style" cover. This cover has a transparent front, which allows using the smartphone even when the case is closed. For 40 Euros (~$43), a classic cover with stand functionality can be bought. High-res headphones and a stereo microphone are also interesting options.

The warranty lasts 24 months.

Input Devices and Interface

Sony uses "SwiftKey" as the virtual keyboard, which is a third-party app. The keyboard can be customized with various themes and has many settings. In the end, Google offers the same plethora of features in its standard app and, in our opinion, provides a better overview. The keyboard can be changed in the menu easily or the user can download a new one via the Play store.

The soft menu keys are placed on the screen and all physical controls can be found on the right side of the device. A camera button is included to start the photo app quickly. The buttons have clear pressure points and the power button even has an integrated fingerprint sensor, which worked reliably in our tests.

The touchscreen is responsive, even in the corners. Input is recognized quickly and comfortably. Sony did not include special gestures for navigation.

Keyboard portrait
Keyboard portrait
Keyboard landscape
Keyboard landscape

Display

Subpixel ordering
Subpixel ordering

First off: when compared to the display of the predecessor, the Xperia Z5 Premium, it is clear to see that the test model has improved, but it still has some flaws. The illumination is more even, the black value is lower, the colors are more accurate and the color temperatures indicate a minor blue tinge. However, is this enough to keep up with the screens of other high-end devices?

Sony has once again chosen an LC display, but this time with an FHD resolution. In contrast, the Xperia Z5 Premium was the first smartphone with a 4K display. The average brightness has dropped to 521 cd/m², which is still a good level.

The 93% illumination means the display is evenly lit. This was a weakness of the predecessor.

510
cd/m²
529
cd/m²
517
cd/m²
513
cd/m²
544
cd/m²
512
cd/m²
516
cd/m²
541
cd/m²
507
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 544 cd/m² Average: 521 cd/m² Minimum: 5.51 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 93 %
Center on Battery: 544 cd/m²
Contrast: 1470:1 (Black: 0.37 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 5.8 | - Ø
ΔE Greyscale 7.2 | - Ø
100% sRGB (Calman)
Gamma: 2.18
Sony Xperia XZ
IPS, 1920x1080, 5.2
OnePlus 3
Optic-AMOLED, 1920x1080, 5.5
Apple iPhone 7
IPS, 1334x750, 4.7
Samsung Galaxy S7
SAMOLED, 2560x1440, 5.1
HTC 10
Super LCD 5, 2560x1440, 5.2
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
IPS, 3840x2160, 5.5
Screen
14%
28%
29%
12%
-25%
Brightness
521
431
-17%
519
0%
351
-33%
434
-17%
541
4%
Brightness Distribution
93
84
-10%
90
-3%
98
5%
93
0%
85
-9%
Black Level *
0.37
0.34
8%
0.36
3%
0.45
-22%
Contrast
1470
1635
11%
1236
-16%
1244
-15%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
5.8
4.1
29%
1.3
78%
2.04
65%
2.8
52%
9.19
-58%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
7.2
3.3
54%
1.9
74%
1.63
77%
3.7
49%
10.58
-47%
Gamma
2.18 110%
2.1 114%
2.26 106%
2.07 116%
2.31 104%
2.7 89%
CCT
8619 75%
6550 99%
6818 95%
6391 102%
7164 91%
9760 67%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
89.38
63.15
86.86
73.19
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
100
99.71
99.35

* ... smaller is better

Settings - White Balance
Settings - White Balance

The contrast of 1,470:1 is higher than that of the Xperia Z5 Premium due to the lower black value. Black pixels are only 0.37 cd/m² bright, which is quite dark. However, the test model cannot match the black of the AMOLED displays in the Samsung Galaxy S7 and OnePlus 3, as both competitors can simply turn off pixels and thus create "true black".

The colors of the panel can be adjusted. Sony has provided various settings for this purpose and some of them are even used for Bravia flat-screen TVs. We checked the colors of the screen with factory settings and after a manual calibration. The settings can be seen on the right side in the picture.

The clear blue tinge of the panel can be reduced with the manual settings. We confirmed this finding with the spectrophotometer and the CalMAN software. The colors are also more realistic for the most part: the green tones show a large deviation. Unfortunately, the phone suffers from larger color deviations than the competitors.

Adjusted color accuracy
Adjusted color accuracy
Adjusted color spectrum
Adjusted color spectrum
Adjusted gray levels
Adjusted gray levels
Adjusted saturation
Adjusted saturation
Color accuracy - factory settings
Color accuracy - factory settings
Color spectrum - factory settings
Color spectrum - factory settings
Gray levels - factory settings
Gray levels - factory settings
Saturation - factory settings
Saturation - factory settings

Outdoors, despite the reflective panel, the high brightness allows users to recognize the content on the Xperia XZ. Direct sunlight will make reading uncomfortable and we recommend use in shadowed areas. The brightness sensor works reliably.

The viewing angles of the panel are very good, as the content is legible even at extreme angles. The blue tinge of the display is clearly noticeable at certain angles.

Outdoors use (brightness minimum)
Outdoors use (brightness minimum)
Outdoors use (brightness max)
Outdoors use (brightness max)
Outdoors use (brightness medium)
Outdoors use (brightness medium)
Outdoors use (brightness sensor)
Outdoors use (brightness sensor)
Viewing angles
Viewing angles
 

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
60 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 21 ms rise
↘ 39 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 99 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (27.3 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
52 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 22 ms rise
↘ 30 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 250 (maximum) ms. » 83 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (42.9 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 60 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 456 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 10420) Hz was measured.

Performance

Our test model beats the predecessor, the Xperia Z5 Premium, in terms of performance: the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996 is a high-end chip with four cores and a clock speed of 2.2 GHz. This chip can be found in the cheaper OnePlus 3.

The Xperia XZ lags behind the competition, despite having the same processor. In fact, our test model is clearly beaten by the OnePlus 3 in many benchmarks. Memory performance greatly influences the results of system benchmarks. The HTC 10, which also uses a Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, can match our test model in terms of performance. The OnePlus 3 is an exception, as it takes a larger lead.

For everyday use, the Xperia XZ works quickly and reliably. Sony should have added more performance for the price, as this would let the test model stand out from the crowd.

AnTuTu Benchmark v6 - Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
129317 Points ∼70%
OnePlus 3 (Version 6.1.4)
142090 Points ∼77% +10%
Apple iPhone 7
142532 Points ∼77% +10%
Samsung Galaxy S7
127902 Points ∼69% -1%
HTC 10
131866 Points ∼72% +2%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
78324 Points ∼42% -39%
3DMark
Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Physics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
1667 Points ∼64%
OnePlus 3
1789 Points ∼69% +7%
Apple iPhone 7
1525 Points ∼59% -9%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2010 Points ∼78% +21%
HTC 10
1512 Points ∼58% -9%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
1348 Points ∼52% -19%
Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Graphics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
4522 Points ∼58%
OnePlus 3
4633 Points ∼60% +2%
Apple iPhone 7
4057 Points ∼52% -10%
Samsung Galaxy S7
3018 Points ∼39% -33%
HTC 10
4581 Points ∼59% +1%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
2336 Points ∼30% -48%
Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
3275 Points ∼67%
OnePlus 3
3424 Points ∼70% +5%
Apple iPhone 7
2964 Points ∼61% -9%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2715 Points ∼56% -17%
HTC 10
3157 Points ∼65% -4%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
2009 Points ∼41% -39%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
20772 Points ∼31%
OnePlus 3
21771 Points ∼32% +5%
Apple iPhone 7
15450 Points ∼23% -26%
Samsung Galaxy S7
19944 Points ∼29% -4%
HTC 10
20344 Points ∼30% -2%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
12852 Points ∼19% -38%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
32056 Points ∼7%
OnePlus 3
34023 Points ∼8% +6%
Apple iPhone 7
63974 Points ∼14% +100%
Samsung Galaxy S7
33348 Points ∼7% +4%
HTC 10
30061 Points ∼7% -6%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
37725 Points ∼8% +18%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
28603 Points ∼15%
OnePlus 3
30241 Points ∼16% +6%
Apple iPhone 7
37676 Points ∼20% +32%
Samsung Galaxy S7
29015 Points ∼15% +1%
HTC 10
27176 Points ∼14% -5%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
26380 Points ∼14% -8%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
88 fps ∼8%
OnePlus 3
89 fps ∼8% +1%
Apple iPhone 7
110.3 fps ∼10% +25%
Samsung Galaxy S7
84 fps ∼7% -5%
HTC 10
73 fps ∼6% -17%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
56 fps ∼5% -36%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
88 fps ∼24%
OnePlus 3
60 fps ∼16% -32%
Apple iPhone 7
57.7 fps ∼16% -34%
Samsung Galaxy S7
53 fps ∼14% -40%
HTC 10
43 fps ∼12% -51%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
52 fps ∼14% -41%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
40 fps ∼7%
OnePlus 3
47 fps ∼9% +18%
Apple iPhone 7
60.7 fps ∼11% +52%
Samsung Galaxy S7
40 fps ∼7% 0%
HTC 10
39 fps ∼7% -2%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
25 fps ∼5% -37%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
39 fps ∼33%
OnePlus 3
46 fps ∼38% +18%
Apple iPhone 7
58.5 fps ∼49% +50%
Samsung Galaxy S7
27 fps ∼23% -31%
HTC 10
24 fps ∼20% -38%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
27 fps ∼23% -31%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
31 fps ∼10%
OnePlus 3
31 fps ∼10% 0%
Apple iPhone 7
42.2 fps ∼14% +36%
Samsung Galaxy S7
28 fps ∼9% -10%
HTC 10
24 fps ∼8% -23%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
18 fps ∼6% -42%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
31 fps ∼36%
OnePlus 3
30 fps ∼35% -3%
Apple iPhone 7
59.4 fps ∼70% +92%
Samsung Galaxy S7
15 fps ∼18% -52%
HTC 10
14 fps ∼16% -55%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
19 fps ∼22% -39%
PCMark for Android - Work performance score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
5058 Points ∼62%
OnePlus 3 (OxygenOS 3.1.2)
7101 Points ∼87% +40%
Samsung Galaxy S7
4826 Points ∼59% -5%
HTC 10
5809 Points ∼71% +15%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
5094 Points ∼63% +1%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
1066 Points ∼69%
OnePlus 3
1112 Points ∼72% +4%
Apple iPhone 7
1531 Points ∼99% +44%
Samsung Galaxy S7
957 Points ∼62% -10%
HTC 10
928 Points ∼60% -13%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
986 Points ∼64% -8%
Graphics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
4716 Points ∼55%
OnePlus 3
4813 Points ∼56% +2%
Apple iPhone 7
6896 Points ∼80% +46%
Samsung Galaxy S7
1723 Points ∼20% -63%
HTC 10
5009 Points ∼58% +6%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
3137 Points ∼36% -33%
Memory (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
1434 Points ∼37%
OnePlus 3
2052 Points ∼53% +43%
Apple iPhone 7
1257 Points ∼33% -12%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2244 Points ∼58% +56%
HTC 10
1772 Points ∼46% +24%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
876 Points ∼23% -39%
System (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
3047 Points ∼46%
OnePlus 3
3537 Points ∼54% +16%
Apple iPhone 7
6097 Points ∼93% +100%
Samsung Galaxy S7
4217 Points ∼64% +38%
HTC 10
2806 Points ∼43% -8%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
2737 Points ∼42% -10%
Overall (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
2165 Points ∼66%
OnePlus 3
2496 Points ∼76% +15%
Apple iPhone 7
2999 Points ∼91% +39%
Samsung Galaxy S7
1987 Points ∼61% -8%
HTC 10
2193 Points ∼67% +1%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
1649 Points ∼50% -24%
Geekbench 4
Compute RenderScript Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
7046 Points ∼93%
OnePlus 3
7085 Points ∼94% +1%
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
3701 Points ∼17%
OnePlus 3
4097 Points ∼19% +11%
Apple iPhone 7
5585 Points ∼26% +51%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
1647 Points ∼32%
OnePlus 3
1754 Points ∼34% +6%
Apple iPhone 7
3490 Points ∼68% +112%

Legend

 
Sony Xperia XZ Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
OnePlus 3 Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
Apple iPhone 7 Apple A10 Fusion, Apple A10 Fusion GPU / PowerVR, 128 GB NVMe
 
Samsung Galaxy S7 Samsung Exynos 8890 Octa, ARM Mali-T880 MP12, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
HTC 10 Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MSM8994, Qualcomm Adreno 430, 32 GB eMMC Flash

The memory access speeds have also been improved. Once again, competitors like the OnePlus 3 or the Samsung Galaxy S7 have a clear advantage. Furthermore, in the Random-Write test, the predecessor upsets our test model.

The Xperia XZ does a poor job when reading SD cards: we used a reference memory card for the tests, the Toshiba Exceria Pro M401. At times, our test model is half as fast as the competitors from Samsung and HTC.

AndroBench 3-5
Sequential Write 256KB SDCard (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
29.8 MB/s ∼46%
Samsung Galaxy S7 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
53.6 MB/s ∼82% +80%
HTC 10 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
65.44 MB/s ∼100% +120%
Sequential Read 256KB SDCard (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
33.5 MB/s ∼40%
Samsung Galaxy S7 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
72.33 MB/s ∼87% +116%
HTC 10 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
83.3 MB/s ∼100% +149%
Random Write 4KB (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
10.5 MB/s ∼14%
OnePlus 3
18.23 MB/s ∼24% +74%
Samsung Galaxy S7
16.01 MB/s ∼21% +52%
HTC 10
15.89 MB/s ∼21% +51%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
14.53 MB/s ∼19% +38%
Random Read 4KB (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
71.5 MB/s ∼52%
OnePlus 3
137.62 MB/s ∼100% +92%
Samsung Galaxy S7
85.9 MB/s ∼62% +20%
HTC 10
29.92 MB/s ∼22% -58%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
19.11 MB/s ∼14% -73%
Sequential Write 256KB (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
138 MB/s ∼73%
OnePlus 3
153.3 MB/s ∼82% +11%
Samsung Galaxy S7
145.72 MB/s ∼78% +6%
HTC 10
115.56 MB/s ∼61% -16%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
99.4 MB/s ∼53% -28%
Sequential Read 256KB (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ
281 MB/s ∼47%
OnePlus 3
408.71 MB/s ∼69% +45%
Samsung Galaxy S7
483.82 MB/s ∼81% +72%
HTC 10
275.09 MB/s ∼46% -2%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
256.75 MB/s ∼43% -9%

Our test model can match most of the competition when surfing the web with modern technologies, like HTML5. However, it cannot catch up with the super-fast iPhone 7.

Overall, the performance of the Sony Xperia XZ is fine, but at no point was it extraordinary.

Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Chrome 52)
2768 ms * ∼5%
OnePlus 3 (Chrome 51)
2920.7 ms * ∼5% -6%
Apple iPhone 7 (Safari Mobile 10.0)
1113.4 ms * ∼2% +60%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2561.5 ms * ∼4% +7%
HTC 10 (Chrome 49)
3146.3 ms * ∼5% -14%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium (Chrome 47)
4377.1 ms * ∼7% -58%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Chrome 52)
9069 Points ∼20%
OnePlus 3 (Chrome 51)
9155 Points ∼20% +1%
Apple iPhone 7 (Safari Mobile 10.0)
24875 Points ∼55% +174%
Samsung Galaxy S7
13161 Points ∼29% +45%
HTC 10 (Chrome 49)
8905 Points ∼20% -2%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium (Chrome 47)
8851 Points ∼20% -2%
WebXPRT 2015 - Overall Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Chrome 52)
90 Points ∼16%
OnePlus 3 (Chrome 51)
122 Points ∼21% +36%
Apple iPhone 7 (Safari Mobile 10.0)
202 Points ∼35% +124%
Samsung Galaxy S7
166 Points ∼29% +84%
HTC 10 (Chrome 49)
108 Points ∼19% +20%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium (Chrome 47)
106 Points ∼18% +18%
JetStream 1.1 - 1.1 Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XZ (Chrome 52)
54.201 Points ∼0%
OnePlus 3 (chrome 51)
54.4 Points ∼0% 0%
Apple iPhone 7 (Safari Mobile 10.0)
165.86 Points ∼0% +206%
Samsung Galaxy S7
74 Points ∼0% +37%
HTC 10 (Chrome 49)
52.1 Points ∼0% -4%
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium (Chrome 47)
48.2 Points ∼0% -11%

* ... smaller is better

Games

The device only supports 30 frames per second, but at the same time, it is capable of running demanding games, such as Asphalt 8: Airborne. The device runs games well, but the slow memory access times can increase the load times significantly.

The position sensor and precise touchscreen are great input devices, as they work reliably.

Asphalt 8: Airborne
Asphalt 8: Airborne
Dead Trigger 2
Dead Trigger 2
Asphalt 8: Airborne
 SettingsValue
 high30 fps
 very low30 fps
Dead Trigger 2
 SettingsValue
 high30 fps

Emissions

GFXBench Battery Test
GFXBench Battery Test

Temperature

The surface temperatures were already a problem for the previous Xperia models. At times, the devices would turn off when recording 4K videos due to high SoC temperatures. Thankfully, the test model is different as the surface temperatures never reached critical values. Even at load, the test model stays below 40 °C.

The SoC can deliver full performance, even after long periods of load, as shown by the battery test of GFXBench.

Max. Load
 37.6 °C36.3 °C35.4 °C 
 38.5 °C37.5 °C38.2 °C 
 37.1 °C37.6 °C37.6 °C 
Maximum: 38.5 °C
Average: 37.3 °C
36.9 °C38.5 °C39.4 °C
37 °C39 °C39.7 °C
37.7 °C37.7 °C39.4 °C
Maximum: 39.7 °C
Average: 38.4 °C
Power Supply (max.)  38.4 °C | Room Temperature 22.4 °C | Voltcraft IR-350
Heat-map Back
Heat-map Back
Heat-map Front
Heat-map Front

Speakers

Surely, Sony would include great speakers? The manufacturer has a large audio department and produces various headphones and speakers. The Xperia XZ is equipped with two front-facing stereo speakers.

Well, the speakers are not bad, especially when the "ClearAudio+" setting is active in the menu. However, they are not very loud (max 77 dB) and the sound output is a little erratic. In exchange, the user will get more bass than with other devices and, at max volume, the output is clear.

Subjectively, the speakers sound better than what the Pink Noise tests show. Movies have a little extra oomph added thanks to the capable, yet small speakers and music sounds clear and balanced.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2027.626.130.12526.226.725.93126.526.5244028.732.329.35029.728.827.46324.72825.88026.123.927.310029.8263012538.934.737.816024.520.221.720033.125.52425040.822.629.531548.62136.940053.521.441.65005620.444.16306117.548.180064.91851.6100066.818.153.1125064.416.950.7160064.815.250.4200068.615.751.7250068.71551.9315067.314.551400065.71449.150006113.645.7630057.313.542.7800051.613.438.2100005913.635.41250056.213.731.71600051.213.528.3SPL7728.961.5N36.41.214.3median 57.3Sony Xperia XZmedian 16.9median 42.7Delta10.83.59.429.635.529.628.529.528.526.328.226.329.631.529.627.927.427.925.125.725.124.729.424.733.831.333.843.732.143.742.620.442.64620.84647.920.247.950.419.750.451.922.351.960.820.160.866.318.966.367.517.767.567.116.767.166.91766.97014.87072.915.972.965.914.665.971.514.471.574.714.174.774.813.874.873.413.773.472.613.872.662.313.762.355.213.755.255.113.655.183.128.683.154.11.254.1median 65.9Apple iPhone 7median 16.7median 65.910.53.410.535.432.335.235.428.226.137.828.228.63028.428.630.629.833.830.637.53739.537.529.329.434.329.328.426.927.328.432.229.130.832.238.426.526.238.441.22323.841.246.227.322.946.252.23322.452.2573819.95759.641.220.459.666.748.418.766.768.25117.768.270.25317.970.272.957.21872.973.857.117.873.873.255.11773.276.758.216.976.777.558.217.477.579.359.217.879.377.757.117.577.775.254.217.375.27858.817.3787253.4187264.646.318.364.663.245.517.963.253.33617.953.387.568.330.187.569.722.11.469.7median 68.2Samsung Galaxy S7median 51median 17.9median 68.210.711.12.410.740.136.832.440.1382731.33834.330.631.734.334.529.72634.544.138.139.444.140.529.736.240.53331.428.63326.827.625.426.826.924.421.326.93724.823.33745.529.522.545.551.636.222.451.657.341.721.357.359.746.618.459.766.452.517.566.468.45217.568.469.952.517.269.971.853.816.871.872.554.817.372.575.256.917.475.278.459.716.678.477.659.717.377.678.260.817.678.281.363.817.681.378.561.817.778.575.958.817.475.976.259.417.776.274.357.517.974.370.354.818.170.354.437.618.154.488.671.129.888.67325.81.373median 70.3OnePlus 3median 53.8median 17.7median 70.311.910.41.611.939.632.44132.431.335.531.531.731.234.22630.446.839.441.833.936.234.629.328.630.233.825.430.629.421.334.434.523.340.541.922.544.845.622.450.153.321.355.85518.458.155.817.56056.817.56152.517.256.660.216.861.769.717.362.774.417.466.87416.672.175.317.371.973.717.665.469.717.663.266.317.756.170.617.459.27017.761.167.317.961.259.118.159.463.318.155.583.129.878.149.11.337.6median 60.2HTC 10median 17.7median 59.410.71.64.733.836.432.433.831.829.931.331.832.732.731.732.732.333.12632.345.446.139.445.429.630.736.229.629.525.228.629.525.923.125.425.925.623.421.325.637.124.723.337.150.127.122.550.156.234.622.456.261.840.421.361.864.74318.464.769.648.717.569.668.847.117.568.867.647.417.267.672.850.316.872.87552.217.37575.953.717.475.97652.116.67674.849.817.374.874.849.417.674.874.548.917.674.576.251.317.776.275.750.817.475.775.451.917.775.472.55117.972.571.150.518.171.164.247.518.164.286.462.729.886.46816.41.368median 71.1LG G5median 48.9median 17.7median 71.19.86.81.69.8hearing rangehide median Pink Noise
Sony Xperia XZ audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (77.01 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 21.3% lower than median
(-) | bass is not linear (21.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 6.5% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (7.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.8% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (8.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (24.6% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 38% of all tested devices in this class were better, 13% similar, 49% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 61% of all tested devices were better, 10% similar, 29% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

Apple iPhone 7 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.06 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 21.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.3% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.9% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (8.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (20.1% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 9% of all tested devices in this class were better, 6% similar, 85% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 37% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 55% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

Samsung Galaxy S7 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (87.45 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 23.7% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.5% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 7.7% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (6.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (21.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 18% of all tested devices in this class were better, 11% similar, 71% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 47% of all tested devices were better, 6% similar, 47% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

OnePlus 3 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (88.61 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 29.5% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (11.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.2% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 7.1% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (3.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 29% of all tested devices in this class were better, 10% similar, 62% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 52% of all tested devices were better, 9% similar, 39% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

HTC 10 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.13 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 20.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7.3% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 10.3% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (6% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (26.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 52% of all tested devices in this class were better, 10% similar, 38% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 72% of all tested devices were better, 7% similar, 21% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

LG G5 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (86.41 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 28.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 3.6% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (4.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 3.8% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (1.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (18.9% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 4% of all tested devices in this class were better, 4% similar, 91% worse
» The best had a delta of 16%, average was 26%, worst was 43%
Compared to all devices tested
» 33% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 63% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 22%, worst was 48%

Frequency diagram in comparison (checkboxes above can be selected)

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The predecessor, the Xperia Z5 Premium, was not very conservative in the power department. The high-resolution display was the excuse at that time. However, the Xperia XZ needs even more power, despite having a lower resolution panel. Other smartphones with the same SoC can manage with much less.

3.6 W on average while idle and 7 W at load are far too much. We are happy that the test model does not take too much power while off or in standby mode.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.09 / 0.18 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 1.76 / 3.6 / 4.06 Watt
Load midlight 7 / 9.52 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Sony Xperia XZ
2900 mAh
OnePlus 3
3000 mAh
Apple iPhone 7
1960 mAh
Samsung Galaxy S7
3000 mAh
HTC 10
3000 mAh
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
3430 mAh
Power Consumption
41%
56%
52%
33%
25%
Idle Minimum *
1.76
0.57
68%
0.54
69%
0.68
61%
0.68
61%
0.83
53%
Idle Average *
3.6
1.24
66%
1.51
58%
1.02
72%
1.49
59%
2.36
34%
Idle Maximum *
4.06
1.36
67%
1.54
62%
1.14
72%
1.91
53%
2.42
40%
Load Average *
7
5.92
15%
3.75
46%
4.73
32%
7.4
-6%
7.27
-4%
Load Maximum *
9.52
10.53
-11%
5.01
47%
7.16
25%
9.71
-2%
9.18
4%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Looking at the battery life, our worst fears are confirmed. The high power usage results in short runtimes. In addition, the battery of our test model is smaller than that of the Xperia Z5 Premium. It is even a little smaller than the batteries of the competitors: 2,900 mAh or 11 Wh are provided for the Xperia XZ.

The device lasts 7:18 hours in the WLAN test. This is much longer than the Xperia Z5 Premium, but the Samsung Galaxy S7, the iPhone 7 and the OnePlus 3 easily take a lead over our device. The idle, load and video run times are also much shorter than those of the competition.

Overall, the Xperia XZ will last a day. If you are very conservative, it might even last two days. However, other devices do a better job in this price class.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
18h 45min
WiFi Surfing v1.3
7h 18min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
8h 22min
Load (maximum brightness)
3h 07min
Sony Xperia XZ
2900 mAh
OnePlus 3
3000 mAh
Apple iPhone 7
1960 mAh
Samsung Galaxy S7
3000 mAh
HTC 10
3000 mAh
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
3430 mAh
Battery Runtime
56%
22%
43%
11%
-2%
Reader / Idle
1125
1338
19%
1770
57%
1810
61%
1273
13%
1277
14%
Load
187
268
43%
126
-33%
242
29%
203
9%
210
12%
WiFi
WiFi v1.3
438
840
92%
517
18%
456
4%
413
-6%
372
-15%
H.264
502
847
69%
722
44%
892
78%
648
29%
411
-18%

Pro

+ stylish design
+ good software
+ various settings for sound and video
+ fast fingerprint sensor
+ reliable camera
+ high-resolution front camera
+ good pictures
+ clear speech quality
+ MHL, NFC, USB-OTG
+ precise controls
+ even illumination
+ bright display
+ low heat emissions
+ good speakers

Cons

- advertisement apps
- very high energy use
- slow memory transfer speeds
- GPS module takes long to find a lock
- high color deviations in the display

Verdict

In review: Sony Xperia XZ. Test model provided by Notebooksbilliger.de
In review: Sony Xperia XZ. Test model provided by Notebooksbilliger.de

The visionary, the Xperia XZ, is sadly not strong enough to ignite a revolution. In many ways, this test model is far too conservative and does not take risks. We could classify it as reliable rather than "revolutionary".

The camera is a special highlight of the marketing campaign: it offers many nice features, but it is decidedly average when compared to the competition. Furthermore, the device lacks an image stabilizer, which would help improve picture quality in poor lighting conditions. The Xperia XZ can take average pictures, just like most of the competition.

In terms of the battery life, the color accuracy of the display, the speeds of the WLAN module and the power consumption, the Xperia XZ is lacking. We would expect more for a smartphone priced at 700 Euros (~$763). The slow memory speeds are especially aggravating, as they push up the load times of games noticeably.

Sony has done a lot right: the software has many helpful settings for new users and the provided tools can even improve the sound and display colors. The stylish design of the phone is a definite plus. The speakers and surface temperatures are also quite good. We especially appreciate the offerings of the customer loyalty app, the Xperia Lounge.

In the end, the Xperia XZ is definitely average in many departments. As such, it cannot be a standout high-end smartphone. Sony lacks real innovation but has produced a good smartphone.

We know that Sony is capable of revolutionizing the smartphone market: the Xperia Z5 Premium and other compact high-end models are proof of their creativity. However, the Xperia XZ does not challenge the established standards for smartphones. Despite being a reliable high-end device, its features may not be worth 700 Euros (~$763), as there are many competitors, like the OnePlus 3, the Galaxy S7 or the iPhone 7, which perform much better.

Sony Xperia XZ - 11/02/2016 v5.1
Florian Wimmer

Chassis
90%
Keyboard
66 / 75 → 88%
Pointing Device
87%
Connectivity
54 / 60 → 90%
Weight
91%
Battery
90%
Display
85%
Games Performance
57 / 63 → 90%
Application Performance
57 / 70 → 82%
Temperature
88%
Noise
100%
Audio
67 / 91 → 74%
Camera
84%
Average
78%
87%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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Florian Wimmer, 2016-11-10 (Update: 2016-11-11)