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Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra Smartphone Review

Florian Wimmer (translated by Martin Jungowski), 04/05/2018

Selfie, Selfie. "Two rear-facing cameras? That is so 2017!" Sony's latest mid-range smartphone Xperia XA2 Ultra features a front-facing dual-camera instead in order to improve selfie quality. Let's find out whether or not this was a smart move, shall we?

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra

Ever since the Xperia XA the “Ultra” suffix has been reserved for Sony’s biggest and most expensive mid-range model in its particular series. Consequently, the Xperia XA2 Ultra is yet another 6-inch mid-range smartphone. What sets it apart from its competitors and the standard XA2 model is its front-facing dual-camera. Officially, Sony's phablet is $50 more expensive than its predecessor (MSRP: $449). However, some retailers are willing to part with it for a little bit under $430 already.

Smartphones as big as the XA2 Ultra are few and far between. Some examples include the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2, the Maze Alpha X, and the Honor View 10. The Samsung Galaxy A8 is a little bit smaller, and for roughly $50 more you can get a OnePlus 5T, the entry into the high-end smartphone market.

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (Xperia Series)
Graphics adapter
Memory
4096 MB 
Display
6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 367 PPI, capacitive touchscreen, IPS, Corning Gorilla Glass 4, glossy: yes
Storage
32 GB eMMC Flash, 32 GB 
, 21 GB free
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5mm, Card Reader: microSD up to 256 GB, 1 Fingerprint Reader, NFC, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: accelerometer, proximity sensor, compass, USB Typ C, USB-OTG
Networking
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 5.0, GSM (850/​900/​1,800/​1,900), UMTS (850/​900/​1,900/​2,100), LTE (B1/​B2/​B3/​B5/​B7/​B8/​B20), LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 9.5 x 163 x 80 ( = 0.37 x 6.42 x 3.15 in)
Battery
14.63 Wh, 3580 mAh Lithium-Ion, QuickCharge 3.0
Operating System
Android 8.0 Oreo
Camera
Primary Camera: 23 MPix f/2.0, 24mm, 1/2.3” Exmor RS, ISO12800
Secondary Camera: 16 MPix dual-camera: 16MP OIS (1/2.6" ExmorRS) + 8MP 120° super (1/4" Exmor R)
Additional features
Speakers: downward facing speaker, Keyboard: virtual keyboard, charger, USB cable, headset, AVG Protection, Sketch, AR Effekt, Movie Creator, 24 Months Warranty, bandwidth (download/​upload): 600Mbps/​150Mbps (LTE); SAR: 0.41W/​kg (head), 1.12W/​kg (body); FM radio, fanless
Weight
221 g ( = 7.8 oz / 0.49 pounds), Power Supply: 54 g ( = 1.9 oz / 0.12 pounds)
Price
449 Euro

 

Case

The rather uncommon case has already been discussed in depth in our Sony Xperia XA and Sony Xperia XA2 reviews. Sony smartphones as of late feature a wide display with very wide bezels at the top and bottom. Given the current trend of narrow and borderless smartphones the fact that Sony decided to reuse the at this point almost stale case design for the XA2 caused quite a stir, yet Sony has remained true to its plans: the Xperia XA2 Ultra features the exact same bezels as its siblings. Due to its wide and large 16:9 6-inch display the phone thus feels incredibly bulky and larger than most other smartphones.

Let’s take the Honor View 10 for example. Despite its 6-inch display this phone is 0.5 centimeters narrower and shorter, 1.5 mm thinner, and almost 50 g lighter. It’s important to note though that the Honor View 10 features a 2:1 display and will thus not be able to utilize the entire screen area when showing 16:9 content such as for example movies.

Traditional and conservative users who prefer 16:9 displays will find a rather unique design in the XA2 Ultra - a smartphone that sets itself apart from the dozens of iPhone lookalikes on the market. The XA2 Ultra is instantly recognizable thanks to its square-edged design. Build quality is very high, and there are no visible gaps between the metal case and the glass front. The only thing we have noticed is that the top and bottom edge feel slightly rough to the touch.

Applying pressure to the front has absolutely no effect whatsoever on the device; applying pressure to the back has a minor effect on the screen contents. Despite its size, we found the incredibly sturdy phone to be virtually impossible to twist and warp.

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
size comparison OnePlus 5T - Xperia XA2 Ultra

Size Comparison

Connectivity

Just 32 GB of storage space are on the low side. While the XA2 Ultra supports microSD cards up to 256 GB they cannot be formatted as internal storage and thus not be used to offload apps. 4 GB of RAM are at this point fairly common at the phone’s price point, and the predecessor featured the exact same amount.

What is rather uncommon is the XA2 Ultra’s support for Bluetooth 5.0 and NFC. Unfortunately, the USB-C port with support for USB-OTG is only connected via USB 2.0.

top: 3.5-mm audio jack, microphone
top: 3.5-mm audio jack, microphone
bottom: microphone, USB-C port, speaker
bottom: microphone, USB-C port, speaker
left: SIM slot, microSD slot
left: SIM slot, microSD slot
right: camera button, power button, volume rocker
right: camera button, power button, volume rocker

Software

As soon as we powered up our review unit for the first time it presented us with an update notification for latest version of Android, 8.0 as well as up-to-date security patches. Sony has opted to tweak and modify the user interface slightly, e.g. by rearranging the settings. The phone also includes a theme store as well as some other Sony in-house applications, such as Movie Creator or a sketch-pad.

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra software

Communication and GPS

Wi-Fi performance and configuration were pretty decent for a mid-range smartphone. It supports the usual 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac wireless networking standards and when connected to our Linksys EA8500 reference router only had to throw in the towel when compared with upper-class high-end smartphones. Standing close to the router signal strength was perfect and websites loaded quickly. At a distance of 10 m with three walls in between signal strength was at around 50 % but we have failed to notice any increases in website loading times.

The device supports LTE download speeds of up to 600 Mbps thanks to support for LTE Cat. 12. That said the amount of supported LTE frequencies is fairly low and might cause trouble due to lack of LTE support overseas. Connected to the German D2 network in mostly urban and downtown environments reception and data speeds were very decent.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
Adreno 540, 835, 64 GB eMMC Flash
656 MBit/s ∼100% +96%
OnePlus 5T
Adreno 540, 835, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
386 MBit/s ∼59% +16%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Adreno 508, 630, 32 GB eMMC Flash
334 MBit/s ∼51%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
Mali-G71 MP2, 7885, 32 GB eMMC Flash
280 MBit/s ∼43% -16%
Honor View 10
Mali-G72 MP12, Kirin 970, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
200 MBit/s ∼30% -40%
Average of class Smartphone
  (5.9 - 939, n=259)
186 MBit/s ∼28% -44%
Maze Alpha X
Mali-T880 MP2, Helio P25, 64 GB eMMC Flash
82.8 MBit/s ∼13% -75%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
OnePlus 5T
Adreno 540, 835, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
650 MBit/s ∼100% +113%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
Adreno 540, 835, 64 GB eMMC Flash
585 MBit/s ∼90% +92%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
Adreno 508, 630, 32 GB eMMC Flash
305 MBit/s ∼47%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
Mali-G71 MP2, 7885, 32 GB eMMC Flash
269 MBit/s ∼41% -12%
Honor View 10
Mali-G72 MP12, Kirin 970, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
223 MBit/s ∼34% -27%
Average of class Smartphone
  (9.4 - 703, n=259)
182 MBit/s ∼28% -40%
Maze Alpha X
Mali-T880 MP2, Helio P25, 64 GB eMMC Flash
95.1 MBit/s ∼15% -69%
GPS test indoors
GPS test indoors
GPS test at the window
GPS test at the window
GPS test outdoors
GPS test outdoors

The built-in GPS module was capable to locate us indoors at an accuracy of 13 m, albeit it took quite a while to lock in on us. Standing at the window and outside accuracy quickly improved to 3 m - a very commendable result.

As always, we have conducted our real-world test comparing the device to a professional Garmin Edge 500 on a bicycle tour using the Runtastic app to record our track. By and large, the XA2 Ultra turned out to be very accurate with only minor deviations. The device is thus more than usable as everyday satnav.

GPS Garmin Edge 500 - overview
GPS Garmin Edge 500 - overview
GPS Garmin Edge 500 - lake
GPS Garmin Edge 500 - lake
GPS Garmin Edge 500 - loop
GPS Garmin Edge 500 - loop
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - overview
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - overview
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - lake
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - lake
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - loop
GPS Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - loop

Telephony and Call Quality

The earphone offered a very decent call quality. Voices were clear, although at higher volumes we have noticed a troublesome amount of static. The microphone, however, turned out to be subpar and our own voice was very muffled. Talking on speakerphone produced similar results, with loud and clear voices and a microphone, that was once again pretty disappointing. Only that this time, it failed us completely and only managed to record and transmit snippets of what we were trying to say. Repeating the phone call did result in a slightly better microphone performance, but it was still poor and occasionally dropped out completely again.

Cameras

sample photo front-facing camera
sample photo front-facing camera
sample photo front-facing camera wide-angle
sample photo front-facing camera wide-angle

Compared to the Xperia XA1, the rear-facing camera has remained largely unmodified save for a higher maximum ISO for improved low-light performance. Otherwise, it still features the same 23 MP sensor and a dual-tone LED flash. The front-facing camera, however, is where it gets really interesting. The XA2 Ultra features a dual-camera at the front with two separate lenses and sensors: a regular 16 MP sensor and an 8 MP sensor behind a wide-angle lens. Besides the larger screen, this front-facing camera is the main difference between the XA2 Ultra and the regular XA2.

The main camera’s performance is very similar to the OnePlus 5T’s with slightly brighter photos for the latter due to its dual-camera at the back. Overall image quality was very good, photos turned out crisp and rich in detail but too dark in low-light environments.

Selfies taken with either of the two front-facing cameras were fairly decent and crisp. As expected, the wide-angle lens offered a significantly wider viewing angle at the price of noticeable lens distortions around the edges. Faces in these areas might thus turn out unintentionally yet comically warped. Unlike many other dual-cameras this one does not combine the two photos into a single image but allows you to chose which lens to shoot with.

A separate app is required to record 4K video with the rear-facing camera. Oddly enough, the smartphone continues to issue a warning when launching the app saying that the device might overheat. This warning message can be traced all the way back to the first Sony smartphone with support for 4K video recording, the 2014 Sony Xperia Z2, which did overheat as a matter of fact. Nowadays, this shouldn’t be the case anymore and video quality was fair: crisp image, accurate colors, and a fast response to changes in lighting conditions.

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. 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
click to load images

We test every camera in our lab under normalized conditions, and the XA2 Ultra produced slightly underexposed but very crisp images rich in detail. It did not struggle with text in front of colored backgrounds, color representation was decent, and photos were in focus up to their very edges.

Overall the XA2 Ultra’s main camera was similar to the XA1’s camera: very crisp but low in dynamics and slightly underexposed. Still, camera quality was more than decent for a mid-range device and even capable of keeping up with the big boys.

reference card
reference card
reference card (details)
reference card (details)
ColorChecker colors. Reference color in lower half of each square.
ColorChecker colors. Reference color in lower half of each square.

Accessories and Warranty

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra charger
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra charger

In addition to a headset the box also contains a USB-C cable and a charger. Unfortunately, the compact charger does not support support for Quick Charge 3.0 while the phone does. Sony’s premium for a Quick Charge 3.0 compatible charger is $50. However, given that Quick Charge 3.0 is a widely adopted standard we suggest looking elsewhere in order to find a better deal. A SIM tool is not required as the SIM tray can be opened without one.

Once again, European customers get 24 months of warranty while US customers are disadvantaged and limited to a single year.

Input Devices and Handling

Swiftkey is Sony’s virtual keyboard of choice, and Google’s GBoard can be retroactively installed from the Play Store. Besides Swiftkey we found no preloaded apps on the device. The highly customizable keyboard app worked very well by and large, and it can be themed with either preconfigured themes or custom designs.

The touchscreen was responsive and sensitive up to its very edges, and it was very smooth overall. Despite the massive bezel at the bottom the Android menu buttons are located on-screen. A one-handed mode can be enabled in the menu. The comparatively small standby button, the volume rocker, and the dedicated camera button are all located on the right-hand side. All buttons are easy to locate and very clicky.

The fingerprint reader at the rear protrudes lightly from the case and is thus easily located. It was reliable and fast even with the phone in standby.

keyboard in landscape mode
keyboard in landscape mode
keyboard in portrait mode
keyboard in portrait mode

Display

subpixel geometry
subpixel geometry

At first glance, the Xperia XA2 Ultra had the lowest resolution of all candidates in our test group. However, considering that all other devices feature 2:1 aspect ratio displays the resolution turns out to be identical as the other candidates merely offer more vertical pixels due to their narrow elongated displays. Accordingly, while the competition features a higher pixel density on paper there is virtually no difference between all the devices in our test group.

Overall, the XA2 Ultra’s display was very crisp and rich in detail. Its exceptionally high average brightness of 680 nits trumped all of its competitors. At 88 %, brightness distribution was fairly high, and we found only minor and negligible shifts in the brightness levels of large uniformly colored areas.

716
cd/m²
686
cd/m²
652
cd/m²
729
cd/m²
659
cd/m²
669
cd/m²
711
cd/m²
639
cd/m²
659
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 729 cd/m² Average: 680 cd/m² Minimum: 5.91 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 88 %
Center on Battery: 659 cd/m²
Contrast: 1177:1 (Black: 0.56 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 2.8 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 3 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
Gamma: 2.18
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
IPS, 1920x1080, 6
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
IPS, 2160x1080, 6
Honor View 10
IPS, 2160x1080, 5.99
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
Super AMOLED, 2220x1080, 5.6
OnePlus 5T
AMOLED, 2160x1080, 6.01
Maze Alpha X
IPS, 2160x1080, 6
Screen
-2%
10%
-25%
4%
-125%
Brightness middle
659
472
-28%
530
-20%
541
-18%
425
-36%
497
-25%
Brightness
680
430
-37%
523
-23%
538
-21%
423
-38%
478
-30%
Brightness Distribution
88
87
-1%
88
0%
96
9%
92
5%
87
-1%
Black Level *
0.56
0.27
52%
0.35
37%
0.6
-7%
Contrast
1177
1748
49%
1514
29%
828
-30%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
2.8
3.5
-25%
2.4
14%
5.8
-107%
2.1
25%
11.6
-314%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
6.5
5.9
9%
5.5
15%
3.4
48%
22.1
-240%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3
4
-33%
2.2
27%
2.7
10%
2.5
17%
13.5
-350%
Gamma
2.18 110%
2.29 105%
2.25 107%
2.07 116%
2.32 103%
2.93 82%
CCT
6938 94%
7048 92%
6598 99%
6570 99%
6455 101%
9955 65%

* ... smaller is better

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 detected 1479 Hz ≤ 5 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 1479 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 5 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.

The frequency of 1479 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.

In comparison: 53 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8813 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Since the device features an IPS display it requires a backlight. Accordingly, blacks turn out to be rather dark gray instead at maximum brightness while AMOLED displays manage to display true blacks. At 0.56 nits, our review unit’s black level was comparatively high. Nevertheless, the display featured a commendable contrast ratio of 1,177:1 thanks to its high maximum brightness.

Out of the box, colors are on the cool side. The phone allows both manual white balance adjustments as well as choosing from two different presets named Standard and Vivid. We ran our usual CalMAN spectrophotometer tests in both modes.

By default, sRGB color accuracy was mediocre. Through manual white balance adjustments we were able to optimize color representation, minimize deviations, and rid the display of its blue tint that was most visible in gray scales.

We have discovered PWM flickering for brightness levels of 5 % and below, albeit at a very high frequency. It should thus not be of any concern.

CalMAN color accuracy out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN color accuracy out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN color space out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN color space out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN gray scale out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN gray scale out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN saturation out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN saturation out of the box (sRGB)
CalMAN color accuracy Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color accuracy Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color space Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color space Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN saturation Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN saturation Standard (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color accuracy Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color accuracy Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color space Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color space Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN saturation Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN saturation Vivid (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Standard optimized (DCI-P3)
CalMAN gray scale Standard optimized (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color accuracy Standard optimized (DCI-P3)
CalMAN color accuracy Standard optimized (DCI-P3)
white balance optimized
white balance optimized
 

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
21.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 6 ms rise
↘ 15.6 ms fall
The screen shows good response rates in our tests, but may be too slow for competitive gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 22 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (25.8 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
42 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 12 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 636 (maximum) ms. » 53 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (41.3 ms).

Short of direct sunlight the Xperia XA2 Ultra’s incredibly bright display remained readable and usable outdoors even in bright indirect sunlight. Viewing angles were less than ideal, though. We have noticed shifts in brightness when viewed from the sides which were less visible to the naked eye than the camera.

outdoors - minimum brightness
outdoors - minimum brightness
outdoors - medium brightness
outdoors - medium brightness
outdoors - maximum brightness
outdoors - maximum brightness
outdoors - brightness sensor
outdoors - brightness sensor
viewing angles
viewing angles

Performance

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The smartphone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 SoC with 8 cores and a clock speed of up to 2.2 GHz. As expected, high-end smartphones at only slightly higher prices offered more performance, and Samsung’s Galaxy A8 was slightly faster as well.

Our review unit’s GPU is an Adreno 508, and once again both high-end smartphones and the Galaxy A8 were faster. All things considered, the Xperia XA2 Ultra’s level of performance was adequate for its price and class.

AnTuTu v6 - Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
70141 Points ∼40%
Honor View 10
173653 Points ∼100% +148%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
83284 Points ∼48% +19%
OnePlus 5T
172124 Points ∼99% +145%
Maze Alpha X
63989 Points ∼37% -9%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (67408 - 73617, n=9)
70799 Points ∼41% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (23275 - 230642, n=350)
70775 Points ∼41% +1%
PCMark for Android
Work 2.0 performance score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
5051 Points ∼72%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
7046 Points ∼100% +39%
Honor View 10
6724 Points ∼95% +33%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
5214 Points ∼74% +3%
OnePlus 5T
6595 Points ∼94% +31%
Maze Alpha X
3795 Points ∼54% -25%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (4636 - 5085, n=9)
4881 Points ∼69% -3%
Average of class Smartphone (2814 - 8601, n=214)
4398 Points ∼62% -13%
Work performance score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
5083 Points ∼61%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
8169 Points ∼98% +61%
Honor View 10
8306 Points ∼100% +63%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
5916 Points ∼71% +16%
OnePlus 5T
7739 Points ∼93% +52%
Maze Alpha X
4562 Points ∼55% -10%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (5083 - 6264, n=9)
5696 Points ∼69% +12%
Average of class Smartphone (5960 - 10264, n=378)
4665 Points ∼56% -8%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
912 Points ∼69%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
1264 Points ∼95% +39%
Honor View 10
1184 Points ∼89% +30%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1195 Points ∼90% +31%
OnePlus 5T
1329 Points ∼100% +46%
Maze Alpha X
924 Points ∼70% +1%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (666 - 925, n=9)
844 Points ∼64% -7%
Average of class Smartphone (7 - 1682, n=453)
666 Points ∼50% -27%
Graphics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1492 Points ∼24%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
5936 Points ∼97% +298%
Honor View 10
3892 Points ∼64% +161%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1331 Points ∼22% -11%
OnePlus 5T
6100 Points ∼100% +309%
Maze Alpha X
1122 Points ∼18% -25%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1470 - 1523, n=9)
1504 Points ∼25% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (18 - 9248, n=453)
1510 Points ∼25% +1%
Memory (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1325 Points ∼31%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
3544 Points ∼83% +167%
Honor View 10
4276 Points ∼100% +223%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
2275 Points ∼53% +72%
OnePlus 5T
3845 Points ∼90% +190%
Maze Alpha X
1294 Points ∼30% -2%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (838 - 1405, n=9)
1201 Points ∼28% -9%
Average of class Smartphone (21 - 4798, n=453)
1124 Points ∼26% -15%
System (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
3287 Points ∼56%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
5822 Points ∼99% +77%
Honor View 10
5195 Points ∼88% +58%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
4358 Points ∼74% +33%
OnePlus 5T
5872 Points ∼100% +79%
Maze Alpha X
3064 Points ∼52% -7%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1763 - 3319, n=9)
3099 Points ∼53% -6%
Average of class Smartphone (369 - 10281, n=453)
2257 Points ∼38% -31%
Overall (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1560 Points ∼42%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
3527 Points ∼96% +126%
Honor View 10
3181 Points ∼86% +104%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1993 Points ∼54% +28%
OnePlus 5T
3678 Points ∼100% +136%
Maze Alpha X
1424 Points ∼39% -9%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1152 - 1563, n=9)
1468 Points ∼40% -6%
Average of class Smartphone (150 - 4308, n=457)
1131 Points ∼31% -27%
Geekbench 4.1/4.2
Compute RenderScript Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
3738 Points ∼41%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
7750 Points ∼86% +107%
Honor View 10
9015 Points ∼100% +141%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
3680 Points ∼41% -2%
OnePlus 5T
8000 Points ∼89% +114%
Maze Alpha X
2726 Points ∼30% -27%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (2910 - 3956, n=8)
3697 Points ∼41% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (836 - 14417, n=153)
3853 Points ∼43% +3%
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
4234 Points ∼62%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
6649 Points ∼98% +57%
Honor View 10
6785 Points ∼100% +60%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
4431 Points ∼65% +5%
OnePlus 5T
6670 Points ∼98% +58%
Maze Alpha X
3795 Points ∼56% -10%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (883 - 4234, n=9)
3583 Points ∼53% -15%
Average of class Smartphone (1099 - 10558, n=200)
3952 Points ∼58% -7%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
865 Points ∼44%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
1943 Points ∼99% +125%
Honor View 10
1918 Points ∼98% +122%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1526 Points ∼78% +76%
OnePlus 5T
1962 Points ∼100% +127%
Maze Alpha X
833 Points ∼42% -4%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (710 - 4210, n=9)
1218 Points ∼62% +41%
Average of class Smartphone (394 - 4265, n=201)
1159 Points ∼59% +34%
3DMark
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Physics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1706 Points ∼56%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
2956 Points ∼96% +73%
Honor View 10
2931 Points ∼96% +72%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1950 Points ∼64% +14%
OnePlus 5T
3068 Points ∼100% +80%
Maze Alpha X
1700 Points ∼55% 0%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1631 - 1822, n=9)
1747 Points ∼57% +2%
Average of class Smartphone (500 - 3669, n=303)
1544 Points ∼50% -9%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Graphics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
727 Points ∼18%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
4034 Points ∼100% +455%
Honor View 10
2994 Points ∼74% +312%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
618 Points ∼15% -15%
OnePlus 5T
4016 Points ∼100% +452%
Maze Alpha X
598 Points ∼15% -18%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (707 - 729, n=9)
720 Points ∼18% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (70 - 5220, n=303)
1049 Points ∼26% +44%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
833 Points ∼22%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
3732 Points ∼99% +348%
Honor View 10
2980 Points ∼79% +258%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
729 Points ∼19% -12%
OnePlus 5T
3758 Points ∼100% +351%
Maze Alpha X
699 Points ∼19% -16%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (811 - 839, n=9)
828 Points ∼22% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (87 - 4734, n=311)
1006 Points ∼27% +21%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Physics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1698 Points ∼56%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
2547 Points ∼84% +50%
Honor View 10
1906 Points ∼63% +12%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1946 Points ∼64% +15%
OnePlus 5T
3031 Points ∼100% +79%
Maze Alpha X
1725 Points ∼57% +2%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1698 - 1816, n=9)
1753 Points ∼58% +3%
Average of class Smartphone (474 - 3642, n=334)
1449 Points ∼48% -15%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Graphics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1256 Points ∼22%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
5599 Points ∼97% +346%
Honor View 10
1954 Points ∼34% +56%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
879 Points ∼15% -30%
OnePlus 5T
5791 Points ∼100% +361%
Maze Alpha X
928 Points ∼16% -26%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1249 - 1289, n=9)
1262 Points ∼22% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (107 - 8312, n=334)
1423 Points ∼25% +13%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
1333 Points ∼28%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
4422 Points ∼92% +232%
Honor View 10
1943 Points ∼40% +46%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
1001 Points ∼21% -25%
OnePlus 5T
4816 Points ∼100% +261%
Maze Alpha X
1034 Points ∼21% -22%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (1332 - 1374, n=9)
1346 Points ∼28% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (120 - 6378, n=342)
1223 Points ∼25% -8%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
13054 Points ∼61%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
21337 Points ∼100% +63%
Honor View 10
14556 Points ∼68% +12%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
13306 Points ∼62% +2%
OnePlus 5T
21348 Points ∼100% +64%
Maze Alpha X
15189 Points ∼71% +16%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (12667 - 13196, n=9)
12981 Points ∼61% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (8065 - 36762, n=489)
12157 Points ∼57% -7%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
18528 Points ∼32%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
57134 Points ∼98% +208%
Honor View 10
22429 Points ∼39% +21%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
15262 Points ∼26% -18%
OnePlus 5T
58097 Points ∼100% +214%
Maze Alpha X
13708 Points ∼24% -26%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (16508 - 18572, n=9)
18252 Points ∼31% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (2465 - 113380, n=489)
15596 Points ∼27% -16%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
16949 Points ∼40%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
41618 Points ∼99% +146%
Honor View 10
20022 Points ∼48% +18%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
14779 Points ∼35% -13%
OnePlus 5T
42022 Points ∼100% +148%
Maze Alpha X
14012 Points ∼33% -17%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (15466 - 17030, n=9)
16739 Points ∼40% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (2915 - 64405, n=490)
13491 Points ∼32% -20%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
29 fps ∼23%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
102 fps ∼82% +252%
Honor View 10
125 fps ∼100% +331%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
34 fps ∼27% +17%
OnePlus 5T
113 fps ∼90% +290%
Maze Alpha X
24 fps ∼19% -17%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (29 - 30, n=9)
29.8 fps ∼24% +3%
Average of class Smartphone (4.1 - 177, n=517)
27.4 fps ∼22% -6%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
31 fps ∼52%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
60 fps ∼100% +94%
Honor View 10
59 fps ∼98% +90%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
31 fps ∼52% 0%
OnePlus 5T
60 fps ∼100% +94%
Maze Alpha X
21 fps ∼35% -32%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (28 - 31, n=9)
29.8 fps ∼50% -4%
Average of class Smartphone (6.9 - 120, n=520)
23.6 fps ∼39% -24%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
14 fps ∼21%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
49 fps ∼74% +250%
Honor View 10
66 fps ∼100% +371%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
16 fps ∼24% +14%
OnePlus 5T
60 fps ∼91% +329%
Maze Alpha X
11 fps ∼17% -21%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (14 - 14, n=9)
14 fps ∼21% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (2.2 - 88.2, n=440)
14.5 fps ∼22% +4%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
15 fps ∼27%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
45 fps ∼82% +200%
Honor View 10
55 fps ∼100% +267%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
15 fps ∼27% 0%
OnePlus 5T
53 fps ∼96% +253%
Maze Alpha X
9.5 fps ∼17% -37%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (13 - 15, n=9)
14.2 fps ∼26% -5%
Average of class Smartphone (4.4 - 115, n=442)
14.6 fps ∼27% -3%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
5.2 fps ∼13%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
34 fps ∼83% +554%
Honor View 10
21 fps ∼51% +304%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
9.9 fps ∼24% +90%
OnePlus 5T
41 fps ∼100% +688%
Maze Alpha X
3.7 fps ∼9% -29%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (5.2 - 10, n=9)
9.24 fps ∼23% +78%
Average of class Smartphone (1.3 - 60, n=304)
12.5 fps ∼30% +140%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
11 fps ∼30%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
34 fps ∼92% +209%
Honor View 10
36 fps ∼97% +227%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
9.6 fps ∼26% -13%
OnePlus 5T
37 fps ∼100% +236%
Maze Alpha X
6 fps ∼16% -45%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (9.2 - 11, n=9)
9.97 fps ∼27% -9%
Average of class Smartphone (2.6 - 110, n=306)
12.6 fps ∼34% +15%
GFXBench
off screen Car Chase Offscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
5.5 fps ∼22%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
24 fps ∼96% +336%
Honor View 10
21 fps ∼84% +282%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
6 fps ∼24% +9%
OnePlus 5T
25 fps ∼100% +355%
Maze Alpha X
4.1 fps ∼16% -25%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (5.3 - 5.6, n=9)
5.49 fps ∼22% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (0.72 - 35, n=236)
8.57 fps ∼34% +56%
on screen Car Chase Onscreen (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
6 fps ∼26%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
23 fps ∼100% +283%
Honor View 10
21 fps ∼91% +250%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
5.8 fps ∼25% -3%
OnePlus 5T
23 fps ∼100% +283%
Maze Alpha X
3.6 fps ∼16% -40%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (5.2 - 6, n=9)
5.64 fps ∼25% -6%
Average of class Smartphone (1.1 - 50, n=239)
7.84 fps ∼34% +31%
AnTuTu v7
MEM (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
5875 Points ∼65%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
8830 Points ∼98% +50%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
6040 Points ∼67% +3%
OnePlus 5T
9027 Points ∼100% +54%
Maze Alpha X
4808 Points ∼53% -18%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (5341 - 6574, n=7)
5952 Points ∼66% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (2797 - 17441, n=127)
6293 Points ∼70% +7%
UX (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
23713 Points ∼51%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
42180 Points ∼91% +78%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
32150 Points ∼69% +36%
OnePlus 5T
46549 Points ∼100% +96%
Maze Alpha X
20935 Points ∼45% -12%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (22684 - 25223, n=7)
23861 Points ∼51% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (6403 - 58766, n=127)
25284 Points ∼54% +7%
GPU (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
19927 Points ∼23%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
83213 Points ∼97% +318%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
25640 Points ∼30% +29%
OnePlus 5T
85868 Points ∼100% +331%
Maze Alpha X
18218 Points ∼21% -9%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (19706 - 19927, n=7)
19824 Points ∼23% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (94690 - 128264, n=127)
28635 Points ∼33% +44%
CPU (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
39834 Points ∼54%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
70234 Points ∼96% +76%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
52916 Points ∼72% +33%
OnePlus 5T
73371 Points ∼100% +84%
Maze Alpha X
29861 Points ∼41% -25%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (39348 - 39856, n=7)
39690 Points ∼54% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (7548 - 99873, n=127)
40556 Points ∼55% +2%
Total Score (sort by value)
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
89349 Points ∼42%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
204457 Points ∼95% +129%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
116746 Points ∼54% +31%
OnePlus 5T
214815 Points ∼100% +140%
Maze Alpha X
73822 Points ∼34% -17%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (87300 - 90435, n=7)
89327 Points ∼42% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (17073 - 290397, n=127)
100740 Points ∼47% +13%

Legend

 
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra Qualcomm Snapdragon 630, Qualcomm Adreno 508, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (8998), Qualcomm Adreno 540, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
Honor View 10 HiSilicon Kirin 970, ARM Mali-G72 MP12, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018 Samsung Exynos 7885, ARM Mali-G71 MP2, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
OnePlus 5T Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (8998), Qualcomm Adreno 540, 128 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
Maze Alpha X Mediatek Helio P25, ARM Mali-T880 MP2, 64 GB eMMC Flash

Web browsing performance was certainly not one of the Ultra’s strengths, and it was only fast enough for second to last place in our synthetic benchmarks. The only phone even slower was the Maze Alpha X. That said HTML5 websites such as Google's Interland loaded acceptably fast and were rendered without major stuttering.

JetStream 1.1 - 1.1 Total Score
OnePlus 5T (Chrome 63)
66.477 Points ∼100% +137%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018 (Chrome 64.0.3282.137)
49.07 Points ∼74% +75%
Honor View 10 (Chrome 63)
34.871 Points ∼52% +24%
Average of class Smartphone (10.8 - 224, n=372)
33.4 Points ∼50% +19%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (27.4 - 30.8, n=9)
28.4 Points ∼43% +1%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (Chrome 65)
28.107 Points ∼42%
Maze Alpha X (Chrome Version 64)
27.463 Points ∼41% -2%
Octane V2 - Total Score
OnePlus 5T (Chrome 63)
12509 Points ∼100% +148%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 (Chrome 53)
10122 Points ∼81% +100%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018 (Chrome 64.0.3282.137)
9350 Points ∼75% +85%
Honor View 10 (Chrome 63)
6729 Points ∼54% +33%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (Chrome 65)
5052 Points ∼40%
Average of class Smartphone (1506 - 35255, n=508)
4996 Points ∼40% -1%
Maze Alpha X (Chrome Version 64)
4990 Points ∼40% -1%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (4398 - 5202, n=9)
4943 Points ∼40% -2%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score
Average of class Smartphone (718 - 59466, n=527)
11914 ms * ∼100% -21%
Maze Alpha X (Chrome Version 64)
10244 ms * ∼86% -4%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (Chrome 65)
9823.3 ms * ∼82%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (8396 - 10236, n=9)
9587 ms * ∼80% +2%
Honor View 10 (Chrome 63)
6013 ms * ∼50% +39%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018 (Chrome 64.0.3282.137)
4275.2 ms * ∼36% +56%
OnePlus 5T (Chrome 63)
3096 ms * ∼26% +68%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 (Chrome 53)
2712.9 ms * ∼23% +72%
WebXPRT 2015 - Overall Score
OnePlus 5T (Chrome 63)
181 Points ∼100% +65%
Honor View 10 (Chrome 63)
157 Points ∼87% +43%
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018 (Chrome 64.0.3282.137)
156 Points ∼86% +42%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (Chrome 65)
110 Points ∼61%
Average Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 (86 - 117, n=8)
105 Points ∼58% -5%
Average of class Smartphone (27 - 362, n=249)
99.9 Points ∼55% -9%
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 (Chrome 53)
57 Points ∼31% -48%

* ... smaller is better

Given the rather slow eMMC storage chips the phone was unable to keep up with the much faster UFS 2.1 storage most commonly found in high-end smartphones. Overall, storage performance was acceptable and average for its price bracket.

MicroSD performance is measured using our Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 reference card, and it, too, was neither particularly fast nor particularly slow. In other words: it was average by and large.

Sony Xperia XA2 UltraXiaomi Mi Mix 2Honor View 10Samsung Galaxy A8 2018OnePlus 5TMaze Alpha XAverage 32 GB eMMC FlashAverage of class Smartphone
AndroBench 3-5
90%
301%
5%
96%
4%
-14%
-24%
Sequential Write 256KB SDCard
63.31 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
65.06 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
3%
62.29 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
-2%
73.99 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
17%
45.9 (3.4 - 87.1, n=101)
-27%
43.9 (3.4 - 87.1, n=284)
-31%
Sequential Read 256KB SDCard
85.92 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
81 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
-6%
77.92 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
-9%
80.96 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
-6%
65.2 (8.2 - 96.5, n=101)
-24%
62.3 (8.2 - 96.5, n=284)
-27%
Random Write 4KB
10.1
15.75
56%
160
1484%
14.69
45%
20
98%
11.61
15%
17.4 (0.75 - 74.9, n=140)
72%
13.6 (0.14 - 164, n=566)
35%
Random Read 4KB
76
148.54
95%
144.3
90%
82.62
9%
138.1
82%
70.27
-8%
34.6 (3.59 - 117, n=140)
-54%
34.9 (1.59 - 173, n=566)
-54%
Sequential Write 256KB
138.8
208.62
50%
194.3
40%
104.2
-25%
203.4
47%
162.16
17%
93.2 (14.8 - 189, n=140)
-33%
73.2 (2.99 - 228, n=566)
-47%
Sequential Read 256KB
273.7
703.99
157%
810.3
196%
299.94
10%
698.7
155%
247.44
-10%
227 (25.8 - 440, n=140)
-17%
214 (12.1 - 832, n=566)
-22%

Gaming

We ran into minor limitations when running games. For example, we were unable to activate the high frame rate mode in Arena of Valor and were thus limited to just 30 FPS with occasional drops to even less. Battle Bay ran at a maximum of 60 FPS and also presented us with occasional dips, although they were not as drastic as the ones experienced in Arena of Valor. Battle Bay should thus run smoothly; the most massive drops occurred at maximum resolution immediately following a match. Shadow Fight 3’s frame rates were fluctuating wildly, particularly so after we enabled high details.

Thus, the XA2 Ultra is not a gaming smartphone per se. However, casual gamers should find it suiting given that the fluctuating frame rates were barely noticeable while actually playing the games in question. Competitive gamers and those seeking utmost performance should however steer clear of this device.

Game controls via orientation sensor and touchscreen worked very reliably.

Shadow Fight 3
Shadow Fight 3
Arena of Valor
Arena of Valor
Arena of Valor
min
Razer Phone 2017
62 (min: 50, max: 64) fps ∼100% +100%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
31 (min: 5, max: 32) fps ∼50%
high HD
Razer Phone 2017
61 (min: 23, max: 62) fps ∼100% +103%
Samsung Galaxy S9
59 fps ∼97% +97%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
30 (min: 20, max: 32) fps ∼49%
Shadow Fight 3
high
Razer Phone 2017
60 (min: 55, max: 62) fps ∼100% +3%
Samsung Galaxy S9
59 fps ∼98% +2%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
58 fps ∼97%
minimal
Razer Phone 2017
30 (min: 27, max: 31) fps ∼100% 0%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
30 fps ∼100%
Battle Bay
half resolution
Razer Phone 2017
121 (min: 121, max: 121) fps ∼100% +98%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
61 (min: 14, max: 61) fps ∼50%
full resolution
Razer Phone 2017
121 (min: 116, max: 121) fps ∼100% +98%
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
61 (min: 18, max: 61) fps ∼50%
Samsung Galaxy S9
60 fps ∼50% -2%

Legend

 
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra Qualcomm Snapdragon 630, Qualcomm Adreno 508, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy S9 Samsung Exynos 9810, ARM Mali-G72 MP18, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
Razer Phone 2017 Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (8998), Qualcomm Adreno 540, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
Arena of Valor
 SettingsValue
 min31 fps
 high HD30 fps
  Your browser does not support the canvas element!
Shadow Fight 3
 SettingsValue
 high58 fps
 minimal30 fps
  Your browser does not support the canvas element!
Battle Bay
 SettingsValue
 half resolution61 fps
 full resolution61 fps
  Your browser does not support the canvas element!

Emissions

Temperature

GFXBench battery test
GFXBench battery test

The smartphone only warmed up slightly, and maximum temperature measured was 36.4 °C. When idle, we have failed to notice any warmth whatsoever.

Whether or not a smartphone throttles its maximum CPU performance under sustained load is determined by running GFXBench’s battery test, and the XA2 Ultra did not throttle at all.

Max. Load
 35.7 °C
96 F
35.1 °C
95 F
35.4 °C
96 F
 
 36.4 °C
98 F
35.1 °C
95 F
35.8 °C
96 F
 
 35.3 °C
96 F
34.5 °C
94 F
34 °C
93 F
 
Maximum: 36.4 °C = 98 F
Average: 35.3 °C = 96 F
30.9 °C
88 F
36.1 °C
97 F
36 °C
97 F
33 °C
91 F
35.5 °C
96 F
35.3 °C
96 F
33 °C
91 F
34.9 °C
95 F
34.3 °C
94 F
Maximum: 36.1 °C = 97 F
Average: 34.3 °C = 94 F
Power Supply (max.)  33.1 °C = 92 F | Room Temperature 21 °C = 70 F | Voltcraft IR-260
heatmap front
heatmap front
heatmap rear
heatmap rear

Speaker

pink noise
pink noise

The XA2 Ultra’s speaker is located at the bottom of the phone, and with a maximum of 87.7 dB(A) it can get quite loud. The sound scape it produced was fairly balanced - sound quality was decent and highs were not overemphasized due to a presence of low mids making for a quite warm acoustic pattern. A manual equalizer is available in the phone’s audio settings, and the device also supports automatic adjustment via Clear Audio +.

Headphones and external speakers can be connected either via the 3.5-mm headphone jack at the top of the device or Bluetooth 5.0. Unfortunately, this latest Bluetooth standard is not supported by too many speakers and headphones just yet. Both ways worked reliably and very well. The included headset’s sound quality and microphone were decent.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2028.628.52524.925.33124.623.94026.426.25030.833.46323.619.38020.22510019.922.112517.628.616019.142.320019.145.625017.453.431516.95640016.857.850015.161.863016.562.980015.668.710001571.4125015.572.2160015.374.6200015.776.7250015.577.3315015.578.6400015.479.2500015.877.963001674.2800015.874.91000016.172.91250016.1711600017.361.8SPL27.987.7N167.9median 16Sony Xperia XA2 Ultramedian 71Delta0.610.635.243.132.931.737.233.831.733.839.63928.326.327.328.126.93026.729243920.948.820.952.519.554.518.559.917.562.917.564.215.763.115.865.116.666.415.873.815.474.915.5791677.415.876.31674.316.375.516.37616.275.816.466.216.450.528.686.61.163.6median 16.4Honor View 10median 65.12.112.3hearing rangehide median Pink Noise
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (87.7 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 29.7% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (11.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 5.5% lower than median
(+) | mids are linear (4.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.4% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (2.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (21.2% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 17% of all tested devices in this class were better, 10% similar, 72% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 49% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 43% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Honor View 10 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (86.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 22.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 3.8% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 11.2% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (3.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (23.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 33% of all tested devices in this class were better, 11% similar, 56% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 62% of all tested devices were better, 7% similar, 31% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency diagram (checkboxes selectable/deselectable!)

Battery Life

Power Consumption

The Xperia XA2 Ultra consumed less energy than the Honor View 10, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything. Overall power consumption was comparatively high, especially in contrast with the Samsung Galaxy A8 or the OnePlus 5T.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.02 / 0.42 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 0.77 / 2.12 / 2.17 Watt
Load midlight 4.3 / 6.73 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
3580 mAh
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
3771 mAh
Honor View 10
3750 mAh
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
3000 mAh
OnePlus 5T
3300 mAh
Maze Alpha X
3900 mAh
Power Consumption
3%
-21%
27%
17%
1%
Idle Minimum *
0.77
0.69
10%
1.05
-36%
0.67
13%
0.58
25%
0.9
-17%
Idle Average *
2.12
2.03
4%
2.36
-11%
1.02
52%
1.44
32%
2.14
-1%
Idle Maximum *
2.17
2.1
3%
2.41
-11%
1.1
49%
1.53
29%
2.18
-0%
Load Average *
4.3
3.18
26%
4.93
-15%
3.86
10%
3.17
26%
3.96
8%
Load Maximum *
6.73
8.73
-30%
9.04
-34%
5.97
11%
8.54
-27%
5.81
14%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Despite its comparatively high power consumption and average-sized battery (3,580 mAh / 14.63 Wh according to Sony’s official specifications) the XA2 Ultra’s battery life was pretty decent. It even managed to beat the Samsung Galaxy A8, although it should be noted that the latter is powered by a much smaller battery.

In our Wi-Fi test, the XA2 Ultra lasted for 14:09 hours and thus around 30 minutes shorter than the Samsung Galaxy A8. In return, the XA2 Ultra’s idle runtime was longer. Translated into real-world experience this means that the device should last for two full days of moderate to regular use. A battery charge level of 30 % should be enough for leaving the house for a couple of hours without fear of losing power halfway through the night. Unless of course one tends to game while out and about, in which case the battery is going to drain very quickly.

Charging the device from near empty to 100 % with the included power supply takes slightly over 2 hours. While the smartphone supports Quick Charge 3.0 a compatible charger must be purchased separately.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
29h 48min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
14h 9min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
14h 36min
Load (maximum brightness)
3h 58min
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
3580 mAh
Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
3771 mAh
Honor View 10
3750 mAh
Samsung Galaxy A8 2018
3000 mAh
OnePlus 5T
3300 mAh
Maze Alpha X
3900 mAh
Battery Runtime
-29%
-2%
-6%
-5%
-12%
Reader / Idle
1788
1671
-7%
1546
-14%
1754
-2%
1624
-9%
H.264
876
819
-7%
908
4%
799
-9%
WiFi v1.3
849
600
-29%
679
-20%
646
-24%
718
-15%
603
-29%
Load
238
305
28%
260
9%
257
8%
240
1%

Pros

+ robust case
+ long battery life
+ crisp photos
+ powerful speaker
+ accurate GPS
+ fast Wi-Fi and LTE
+ dedicated camera button
+ very bright display
+ up-to-date software

Cons

- high power consumption
- no Quick Charge power supply included
- limited LTE band support
- microphone dropouts
- tight on storage space
- distortions on wide-angle front-facing camera
- black level comparatively high

Verdict

In review: Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra. Review unit courtesy of notebooksbilliger.de
In review: Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra. Review unit courtesy of notebooksbilliger.de

“It has always been a bit more expensive to have a special taste.” This slogan held true back in the days when Sony smartphones were still known as Sony Ericsson Xperia, and it still does so for today’s review unit with a street price of a bit under $430. For just $50-$100 more you can get an Honor View 10 or OnePlus 5T with much more processing oomph and better screen-to-body ratios to boot. However, the Sony’s ginormous and exceptionally bright 16:9 customizable display is most certainly a unique selling point.

The two selfie cameras at the front allow for more artistic freedom when taking photos by letting one choose between a regular and a wide angle shot, albeit the latter comes with distracting distortions around the edges. The main camera is still incredible and living proof that even a single lens can produce amazing photos. The device’s poor microphone performance was a major letdown, though, especially considering that we used to praise Sony smartphones for their superior voice quality in the past. The speaker, on the other hand, was fairly decent and the remarkably accurate GPS was a positive surprise. The overall experience is accompanied by the device’s up-to-date software and very decent handling capabilities.

The Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra may not be the most fashionable device out there and it certainly isn’t the most affordable one either, but its total package turned out to be quite impressive.

Purchased through your network operator the Xperia XA2 Ultra can be the ideal companion for those who like to take selfies and don’t need high-end performance. Its large screen and long battery life are commendable, however we would suggest waiting a bit longer for the price to drop to more acceptable levels.

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra - 03/31/2018 v6
Florian Wimmer

Chassis
87%
Keyboard
70 / 75 → 93%
Pointing Device
90%
Connectivity
46 / 60 → 76%
Weight
88%
Battery
96%
Display
88%
Games Performance
39 / 63 → 61%
Application Performance
52 / 70 → 75%
Temperature
91%
Noise
100%
Audio
53 / 91 → 58%
Camera
80%
Average
75%
85%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra Smartphone Review
Florian Wimmer, 2018-04- 5 (Update: 2018-05-15)