IFA 2015: Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review

After months of leaks, rumours and could be/would be and should bes', Sony finally unveiled three versions of its super powerful Z5 series. 

The UK hadn't seen a flagship device from the Japanese manufacturer since the Z3 was launched and we looked on whistfully as Japan got the Z4. However, with the latest unveilings, the company have finally redeemed themselves eben though we still feel a bit ignored by it.

Look and feel:

The Sony Z5 Premium that we tried out was as premium looking as its name. It was Gold. This can be a very tricky colour to pull off especially if the phone is a metal one. 

Apple and HTC have taken the easy path by making their phones have a hint of gold than the brassy end of the spectrum but Sony have not played coy. Bold and brassy, I tried my best to get the best angles of the phone in my pictures but they still look more brass than gold. Please believe me when I say this: the phone looks better in hand than in pictures.


The metal on the back is etched with the Sony logo and the metal plate is slightly recessed in. The edges are a continuous line with no joints visible and the chrome power button is again set in a little bit and also has the fingerprint sensor on board.



At the Sony booth at Berlin, the refrain I heard from Sony reps all around me was that the camera was the best feature on the phone, I havent tried the phone out for a very long time but it is indeed really good. There is a brightness and colour slider that will get rid of most post-processing needs on your phone when the sun either burns them out or because you cant make out faces in the dark.

My impressions are based on perfect-light conditions and the auto-focus was super fast and accurate. Sony have said it focusses oin a mere 0.3 seconds and even though I didnt time it, it seemed very close to the truth.

23-MP with a pulse LED flash and an ISO that goes upto 3200 makes it one of the best cameras around. The front-facing one isnt too shabby either. 5-MP with the ability to shoot and record Full HD videos makes it a cracking jobber for all those beauty shots.


Sony blew away competition with the Xperia Z3 and the two day battery it packed and you will be happy to know that the Xperia Z5 Premium has a bigger battery than its stablemates. 3430 mAH puts it at par with LG G4, Huawei Mate S and Honor 7 and if pedigree is to be believed, it will again take you through two days of fair to high usage.

Video viewing

I am sure, you are all dying to find out how videos look on the 4K screen. I just need one word to describe it: Spectacular.

I looped through a trailor of the James Bond movie coming up in November and Spectre looked amazing. I could zoom into the video without pausing it and still have non-pixellated frames and even though I couldnt crank up the volume to the highest, it sounded great.

Sony have always given us great viewing angles and clarity and they dont fail with this device either.

Early Verdict

After the less than spectacular sales and over heating issues with Xperia Z3, we were hoping Sony would come back with something incredible.

The unibody design that Sony has adopted as a template for all their mobile devices is still there but has been tweaked ever so slightly. The back is slightly recessed and isnt glass and the metal effect is absoulutely ace and more premium than its peer group.

Will the device wow the paying public? Well, that remains to be seen but we really liked it for the brief time we spent looking at it. 

Prices for the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium start at £699 putting it at par with Apple's iPhone 6 Plus and Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge. And in our opinion, it is a worthy competitor in that space.

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