The chief drawback I had with Sony’s flagship smartphone of 2023, the Xperia 1 V, was that it was simply too darn costly for what it supplied. So right here we’re with the extra inexpensive Xperia 5 V (pronounced 5 mark 5). Except it is hardly an “affordable” smartphone—it nonetheless prices £850 (round $1,000), roughly £450 lower than its taller sibling.
The excellent news is that this new Sony cellphone is nicely rounded, with a foolish identify, a cultured design, and a singular characteristic set. It packs high-end specs and nonetheless goals squarely on the content material creator area of interest with photograph and video options that can go over most individuals’s heads. It’s behind the curve on some fronts when in comparison with equally priced Android phones, but not less than it is a greater worth than the Xperia 1 V. It is a disgrace it isn’t coming to the US.
Sony’s signature rectangular profile is a glance that dates again over a decade to its earliest Android telephones, but the Xperia vary has grown taller and slimmer over time. Some describe it as compact, but the Xperia 5 V is considerably heavier and taller than an iPhone 15 or Samsung Galaxy S23. It’s simply narrower than each. That makes it simple to handle one-handed, although the keyboard can really feel cramped in portrait orientation.
This glass sandwich is available in black, blue, or platinum (grey), but the again of the Xperia 5 V is easy and matte, lacking out on the grippy texture of its dearer counterpart. But similar to the Xperia 1 V, there’s a 3.5-mm headphone jack up prime, the best edge hosts a quantity rocker, energy button with fingerprint sensor, and digital camera shutter button, plus there is a microSD card alongside the underside. There’s an IP65/IP68 dust- and water-resistance rating to outlive submersions in water, and Sony employs Gorilla Glass Victus for the glass, making it sturdy sufficient. However, lots of telephones at this worth have upgraded to the marginally harder Victus 2.
One of the primary downgrades from the Xperia 1 V is the show, but I don’t suppose most folk may have any points with this 6.1-inch OLED. The 2,520 x 1,080-pixel decision is sharp, and the display will get vivid sufficient to stay legible open air in case you keep away from direct daylight. It nonetheless has Sony’s most well-liked 21:9 facet ratio, with room for bezels and front-facing audio system prime and backside, making it good for watching motion pictures (although you don’t get Sony’s Creator Mode for devoted shade replica). The refresh rate is 60 Hz by default, but you may change it to 120 Hz for a smoother expertise at the price of some battery life (it is a trade-off value making).
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor with 8 GB of RAM makes for flagship efficiency. It feels responsive, jumps in and out of apps with ease, and runs video games like Asphalt 9: Legends and Kingdom Rush Origins for hours with out grievance. The Xperia 5 V will get heat throughout lengthy gaming periods or whenever you shoot video, but not worryingly so. Just 128 GB of storage is disappointing, but Sony mitigates it by together with a microSD card slot, a rarity on top-end telephones today.
Battery life is a power. The 5,000-mAh cell noticed me by means of the busiest of days, and you can push to 2 days between prices in case you use Sony’s Stamina mode. A half-hour of charging was sufficient so as to add 50 p.c, but the Xperia 5 V took virtually two hours to completely cost, which is sort of gradual in comparison with the competitors. Charging maxes out at 30 watts and slows down when the cellphone will get heat. Thankfully, there’s help for (*5*).
Sony’s picture sensors account for a hefty slice of the corporate’s income. It makes far extra money by supplying digital camera sensors to different producers, together with Apple, than from gross sales of its personal Xperia vary. The digital camera system within the Xperia 5 V is robust, with the identical 52-MP primary digital camera and 12-MP ultrawide, because the Xperia 1 V. It solely misses out on the telephoto lens, but Sony makes use of that primary sensor to crop in and ship a good 2X zoom, producing a barely sharper photograph than commonplace digital zoom.