Sony Xperia 5 II review – the underdog of the year!


For example, towards the end of the year, we will be dealing with one hell of a smartphone. This is the Sony Xperia 5 II in a review.

Samsung, Huawei, OPPO, OnePlus. Just a number of well-known Android smartphone manufacturers who have all released new devices this year. But let’s not forget Sony, which has also had a series of devices in its range for years. We got to work with the Sony Xperia 5 II for a review and the conclusion can almost be described as a revelation.

Really different

Most premium smartphones are very similar. They combine the best specs of the moment in a serious housing. Sony does that differently and you notice that when you unpack the phone. The excellent specs have remained, but the housing and the feeling that the smartphone gives you are significantly different.


I always see Sony as a modest brand when it comes to smartphones. They design sleek phones without any fuss. And I noticed for this review that the Sony Xperia 5 II is no exception. The front and back are smooth. You only have a camera island and the brand name Sony in combination with a type indication on the back. At the front, the selfie camera is incorporated in a bezel and there are no physical buttons to be found.

Where Sony lags behind the competition is that the edges are a bit thicker, but that does not disturb at any time. Moreover, the issue of the notch is also resolved immediately. On the side are a number of buttons for the volume, on / off button, a shortcut to the camera and a Google Assistant button.

All those buttons on the side take some getting used to. You can also quickly open the camera via the smartphone screen, but it is nice that there is a separate button for it. In the beginning, I often mistook these for the Google Assistant button because they are close together. Maybe a little overkill on buttons. On the other hand, you have a lot to choose from and that makes Sony really different.

Sony Xperia 5 II review

Sony Xperia 5 II review – specifications

For its modest appearance, the Sony Xperia 5 II is really a powerful thing. You have a 21: 9 6.1-inch OLED HDR screen with a refresh rate of 120Hz. There is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 under the hood and you have 128 GB of storage and 8 GB of RAM. Via microSDXC you can further expand the storage to a maximum of 1 TB.

What is striking is what a lightweight phone this actually is. For such a powerful smartphone, the Sony weighs a meager 163 grams. You have a camera with three lenses on the back. This is a 12 MP + 12 MP + 12 MP combination. In front is an 8 MP camera.

The battery has a capacity of 4,000mAh. Wireless charging is unfortunately not included. The smartphone comes with stereo speakers. Sony is also thinking of the dinosaurs among you. It has a 3.5mm input for your headphones. Did I mention that Sony really does differently? The phone ships on Android 10.

Sony Xperia 5 II review

Sony Xperia 5 II review – daily use

A huge plus of this smartphone is its weight. It is a nice thin model and the Sony is not a big present in your pocket. It has been a really long time since I have tested a high-end smartphone that was not a whopper in my pocket. Today smartphones are so big and heavy that they are quite a dominant part of your daily activities. You hardly feel the Sony in your pocket thanks to the weight of 163 grams.

Sony’s take on Android is business with a dash of entertainment. A funny gimmick is that you can set up a sleeping robot dog from Sony with the Always On Display. This version of Android 10 does come with a number of apps that I don’t care about myself. Personally, I prefer to have an Android that is as bare as possible and in control myself.

The design of the phone deserves two thumbs up in my opinion. It is very sleek, but you do not have to worry that the device is slippery or something. I did have to get used to the operation. My finger sometimes unintentionally rested against a button. Fortunately, the buttons do not protrude, but have gone a bit in the design. As a result, you really have to impress them, which is nice and that prevents an unintended action.

Sony Xperia 5 II review front

Besides the fact that the bezels reveal that Sony is not completely on point with the competition, the Japanese company is still a step behind. The phone can fast charge up to 21W. Brands like Huawei, OPPO and OnePlus do that a lot better. It feels like a decline when you get used to it.

All in all, the criticisms of the Sony Xperia 5 II are not deal breakers. It would have been really nice if you could fast charge with 30W or more. But what is not may yet come, who knows what Sony has in store for 2021.

Sony Xperia 5 II review in de hand

Sony Xperia 5 II review – camera

And then about the quality of the camera. There is little to criticize about that. The photos are true to life and very sharp. If you try to take a photo of objects closer, the camera will perform less. I can draw a very positive conclusion for general photos of an object. I tested the camera with a BMW M8 Competition Convertible as a model.


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