Sony Xperia 1 IV Review: The Sony Xperia 1 IV is one of the few flagship smartphones of 2022 to retain the 3.5mm headphone jack. It’s also the only phone to feature a continuous zoom feature in its telephoto lens making it an ultimate camera phone. But it’s also the only flagship phone of 2022 to come with just the phone in the box (no paperwork, no rubber case, no charger, no charging cable just the phone).
So, aside from the powerful chipset, build quality, and durability, there are some key features of the Sony Xperia 1 IV that makes it peculiar. This review of the Sony Xperia 1 IV will take you through the key specifications of this phone and explore its strengths and weakness if there is any. At the end of this Sony Xperia 1 IV Review, you should understand why this phone is meant for a selected few and if you’re among these selected few.
Sony Xperia 1 IV Review
Display, Design, and Build
The display size of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is 6.5-inches. It has an OLED panel, has 120Hz refresh rate, HDR BT.2020, and a display resolution of 1644 x 3840 pixels. The display of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is tall and thinner than most other 2022 flagship phones. Its display is 4k and it gives you a near accurate color. The display is also very bright for outside use (even under sunlight).
As per the design, the Sony Xperia 1 IV does not have any notch at the top. It comes with big bezels at the top and bottom of the phone. This has been Sony’s signature design for its smartphones. The screen is flat on both sides and the selfie camera is placed on the top bezel. While on the rear, the phone has a simple and tiny camera module that houses the rear camera sensors.
The build of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is a Glass front (Gorilla Glass Victus), glass back (Gorilla Glass Victus), and aluminum frame. Sony Xperia 1 IV is dust and waterproof. The phone is certified to have IP68 water and dust resistance feature and can survive underwater for 30 minutes.
Overall, the design, build, and display of the Sony Xperia 1 IV are top quality. You’ll especially enjoy the 4k display and its thin, tall screen makes it very easy to slip in and out of your pocket.
One of the major talking points of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is its camera. Sony introduced the continuous optical zoom feature for the first time in a smartphone. Let’s introduce you to the camera sensors before we dive right into their features.
On the rear, the Sony Xperia 1 IV has a 12MP primary camera that has Dual Pixel PDAF and OIS features. This camera is supported by a 12MP telephoto lens that has Dual Pixel PDAF, 3.5x-5.2x continuous optical zoom, and OIS features. Then there is a 12MP ultra-wide lens and a 0.3 MP, TOF 3D depth sensor completing the quad rear camera. Upfront, it has a 12MP front camera for selfies and video calls.
The stand-out feature in the camera of the Xperia 1 IV is the 3.5x-5.2x continuous optical zoom. This is the first time this feature is implemented on a smartphone and here is why it is important. Usually, phone cameras can zoom in to a specified range. For example, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is capable of 10x optical zoom. This means the camera of the S22 Ultra can only zoom and take quality photos at 10x. So, any zoom between 6x to 9.9x is done digitally (the same as using your normal camera to take photos and cropping in).
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The problem with digital zoom is that it reduces the quality of the photo. But, with the 3.5x-5.2x continuous optical zoom feature of the Xperia 1 IV, the 12MP telephoto of the Sony Xperia 1 IV can zoom between this range without losing the quality of the photo. The cameras of the phone can also shoot steady videos in 4K resolution with good stability.
Some of the main camera features of the Sony Xperia 1 IV are Zeiss optics, Zeiss T* lens coating, LED flash, panorama, HDR, eye tracking, 5-axis gyro-EIS, and OIS. Sony also included its own image processing chip to improve the quality and processing of photos. The camera app also comes with Sony’s camera interface which has lots of camera features.
So, if you’re looking for a camera phone that gives you the camera interface of a Sony camera, then you will love using this phone. But, you must know how to use and be comfortable with these many features to be able to enjoy using them (or you can learn). This is why even though the Sony Xperia 1 IV is an ultimate camera phone, it’s not meant for everyone.
Chipset, CPU, and GPU
The chipset inside the Sony Xperia 1 IV is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. This powerful 2022 chipset features an octa-core CPU that has a 1x Cortex-X2 core with a speed clocked at 3.00GHz. The CPU also has 4 efficiency cores to help cool down the temperature of the chipset when under heavy use.
The GPU inside the chipset is the Adreno 730. This GPU is very powerful and paired with the octa-core CPU, playing graphics-intensive games becomes very smooth without any lags. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset also features a very powerful ISP that process image on a whole new level.
RAM and Storage
The Sony Xperia 1 IV comes in two storage configurations. It comes with 12 + 256GB and 12 + 512GB of storage. There is room for storage expansion via a microSD card and it also has room for a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Sony Xperia 1 IV is powered by a 5,000mAh battery with support for a 30W fast charge. You can charge this device from 0 to 100% in about 65 minutes. Other charging features are Fast wireless charging and reverse charging. The battery of the Sony Xperia 1 IV can last you more than 24 hours.
The Sony Xperia 1 IV boots Android 12 out of the box. Sony is promising three years of major software updates and four years of monthly security patches for this phone. This phone also has support for Google Mobile Services and you can download software updates, apps, and games from the Google Play Store.
Other sensor features are Fingerprint (side-mounted), Google Assistant, GPS, proximity sensor, NFC, Bluetooth 5.2, Wi-Fi Direct, Infrared, etc. The available colors of the Sony Xperia 1 IV are Black, Violet, and White.
Sony Xperia 1 IV Review: Conclusion
This review has shown that the Sony Xperia 1 IV is no doubt one of the best camera phones you can buy in 2022. It has a set of useful cameras, awesome display quality, features a powerful chipset, fast CPU cores, powerful GPU, really beautiful design, very durable with IP68 water/dust resistant certification, and runs the latest Android OS.
From the Sony Xperia 1 IV Review, you can see that the standout feature is the 3.5x-5.2x continuous optical zoom. So, if you’re a camera person and need a phone with features like a regular camera, then you’re among the selected few that should buy the Sony Xperia 1 IV.
But, the Sony Xperia 1 IV is relatively expensive compared to other flagship phones of 2022 and not everyone will like the tall, thin screen (some people prefer a wide screen like the one of the vivo X Note). Again, this phone is meant for everyone and only camera enthusiasts will appreciate it and use it to its full potential.
Sony Xperia 1 IV Review: Price
The starting price of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is $1,399 for the 12GB + 256GB storage. The model with 12GB + 512GB storage is priced at about $1,599. This phone will start shipping out by June 16 in the UK and by September 1 2022 in the US. You can check out the product using the link in the table below.
Buy the Sony Xperia 1 IV
Alternatives of the Sony Xperia 1 IV
Below are some of the recommended phones you can buy if you don’t want to buy the Sony Xperia 1 IV. Note that most of these phones are less expensive but do not come with the camera features on the Sony camera interface.