amazon Sony Xperia 1 III reviews
Sony Xperia 1 III is Sony’s most advanced smartphone to date, excluding Xperia Pro-I which is a product designed for professional vlogs and live streamers. Xperia 1 III has to compete directly with two special “big” names on the market today, Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max and Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3.
Design: Sony’s substance
So far, Sony phones have always gone their own way, different from the rest. Some people will say that Sony is conservative, but what if one day Sony launches a phone with “rabbit ears” like the iPhone or uses a perforated screen, or a water drop? I really can’t think of it.
Masculine and square, are the words that can encapsulate the design experience of the Sony Xperia 1 III. The body is elongated like a supermodel, that’s because the screen of the machine follows the 21: 9 “cinematic standard” aspect ratio of Sony. If you look at photos or read reviews online, you’ll see that many people criticize the Xperia 1 III for being too long, but when I use it, it’s not much longer than the Samsung S21 Ultra, just because the width is a bit narrow, so the body feels long.
Sony completely says “no” to screen defects such as rabbit ears, holes, water drops, etc. With Xperia 1 III, you will own a completely intact, spacious, and unobstructed screen by anything with a near absolute balance of top/bottom and left/right. The two edges of top and bottom edges of the screen are a bit thicker to make the palm rest, and at the same time integrate a stereo speaker system. All are protected by today’s latest Gorilla Glass Victus.
The back design marks the biggest change of Xperia 1 III compared to the previous generation. Instead of glossy glass, the Xperia 1 III has a frosted glass back with an anti-reflective coating. Sweat and fingerprints on the device are very well limited, but Sony’s rough way also makes the machine quite slippery. The back of the device is protected by Gorilla Glass 6, not Victus like the front.
The main camera cluster of Xperia 1 III still follows the traditional style with vertical lenses, not following the trend of induction cookers, gas stoves, honeycomb charcoal stoves, etc. Sony’s partner continues to be the famous Zeiss. The camera cluster is slightly protruding, but it is nothing compared to the iPhone 13 Pro Max or Samsung S21 Ultra and Xperia 1 III is still fully equipped with OIS optical stabilization for its main and telephoto cameras.
Three main lenses include a 12MP wide-angle camera, f/1.7 aperture; a 12MP telephoto camera with f/2.3 aperture (70mm focal length), and f/2.8 aperture (105mm focal length) and 12MP ultra-wide-angle camera, with f/2.2 aperture. The lenses are equipped with Dual Pixel PDAF dual-phase focus technology.
The design of the Xperia 1 III emphasizes meticulousness and high-end, but that does not mean that Sony does not have confusing decisions. First, it is the fact that the company places up to 5 physical buttons on the right side of the machine, while the other side has nothing. Volume up and down, power key cum fingerprint sensor, dedicated camera key, no problem, but Sony decided to cram an extra key to call the virtual assistant Google Assistant and the key can’t assign any other function. The buttons are also “convex” differently, creating a slightly confusing experience.
Second, the Xperia 1 III retains the 3.5mm headphone jack, which is a welcome decision, but the jack is located on the top edge of the machine, below only the USB-C port. We, especially men, have a habit of putting our phones in our pockets and when we put them in, we tend to put the head down first, so placing the 3.5mm headphone jack on the top edge will cause some inconvenience.
Screen: Sony got to number two no one number one!
Xperia 1 III is equipped with a 6.5-inch OLED screen, supporting a 10-bit color display, 4K resolution (as Sony calls it, screen resolution is 1644 x 3840 pixels) pixel density of 643 PPI, and scanning frequency 120Hz. On paper, the screen of the Xperia 1 III has the best specs available today, with no other device matching it.
In experience, the images displayed on the Xperia 1 III have high embossment, vivid colors, a very wide contrast range, and a flawless 21:9 screen that delivers a strong visual impression. The maximum brightness of the device is high but slightly less than that of the iPhone 13 Pro Max and Samsung S21 Ultra. By default, Xperia 1 III will run in “Creator Mode”, the picture mode with the most “standard” colors, in addition, the device also “Standard Mode” expands the color space to make colors brighter and more eye-catching. Over time, I find that you should still choose Creator Mode instead of Standard Mode, even if you don’t do things like edit photos and videos so that the content displays the most authenticity.
The 21:9 “cinematic” ratio of the Xperia 1 III brings a different experience, and when using this device, I am excited when watching movies and entertainment, not away. To kill time to not be sad. Unfortunately, though, there’s not a lot of pure 21:9 content, most of the content we consume will always have two black bands on either side.
A small note about the scanning frequency of Xperia 1 III: The scan frequency of the device is fixed at 60Hz and 120Hz, not varying based on the display content like Samsung S21 Ultra or iPhone 13 Pro Max. In other words, even when you view still images, the machine will keep the 120Hz refresh rate, which can cause the battery to drain faster. In addition, only certain applications can run at 4K 120Hz resolution, for most applications, Xperia 1 III will automatically switch back to Full HD + resolution.
Sound is also a dominant aspect of the Xperia 1 III. The stereo speaker system gives a surround-like experience, the sound quality is clear, and I can feel the sound going from one speaker to the other. They combine with the screen to make the Sony Xperia 1 III the best entertainment machine at the moment.
Hardware: Snapdragon 888 hot easily
The Xperia 1 III is a flagship with the most powerful configuration available today, that’s undisputed. The heart of the device is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip and 12GB of RAM. In theory, this Sony machine can easily handle any task you set it to.
But in actual use, Xperia 1 III heats up very quickly, especially with tasks such as taking photos, filming, and playing heavy games. The thin and light design of the device may be the main reason, but it is undeniable that manufacturers are having too many difficulties controlling the temperature of the Snapdragon 888 chip. Another machine that I have experienced. Experiment, Xiaomi Mi 11T Pro, is also rarely at maximum performance because the device often overheats, having to lower the pulse to dissipate heat.
For example, with the AnTuTu application, the device’s temperature spiked to more than 7 degrees Celsius during the benchmarking process. The total score of the device is less than 650 thousand points, much lower than the power of Snapdragon 888.
This reminds me of the Xperia Z5. At that time, this smartphone equipped with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 chip also had many temperature problems, leading to crashes and many other related problems. Snapdragon 810 then became a “stain” of Qualcomm.
In terms of software, Xperia 1 III comes pre-installed with Android 11, with an interface almost the same as the original Android, with very little customization. The software experience is good, smooth with fast response speed.
However, my problem with the Xperia 1 III is that it comes pre-installed with a lot of bloatware and cannot be completely removed. I can understand apps like Asphalt 9: Legends, which is a collaboration between Sony and Gameloft to bring the 120Hz gaming experience to Xperia 1 III, but there are other apps like Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. For those who need to use it, it is okay, but if there is no need to use those applications, it will be unnecessary redundancy.
where can you get a Sony Xperia 1 III online
Sony Xperia 1 III XQ-BC72 5G Dual 512GB 12GB RAM Factory Unlocked (GSM Only | No CDMA – not Compatible with Verizon/Sprint) International Version – Frosted Gray: Buy it now
Sony Xperia 1 III XQ-BC72 5G Dual 512GB 12GB RAM Factory Unlocked (GSM Only | No CDMA – not Compatible with Verizon/Sprint) International Version – Frosted Black: Buy it now
The camera goes against the crowd, not for everyone
It is well known that Sony owns the market-leading smartphone image sensors. Sony camera products are also very trusted by photographers. Yet the Xperia phone’s photographic capabilities have never been appreciated, it’s related to a way of thinking that Sony still holds to this day.
While the rest of the industry strives to create a photography experience that is easy for users, just holding up the camera to get good photos thanks to the development of computational photography, Sony goes against it with way… encouraging users to manually adjust all parameters by bringing the entire Sony Alpha camera’s fine-tuning system to Xperia 1 III.
Take a look at the camera interface of the Xperia 1 III. The most basic Basic mode is still quite complicated compared to the simplicity of the iPhone. And if you accidentally switch to Auto mode, you will find yourself entering a new horizon: The interface changes to horizontal, shooting with a trigger but no touch buttons anymore, and many confusing numbers like ISO, aperture, focal length,… Not to mention other modes such as Aperture Priority, Manual Exposure, etc. all of them require users to have certain knowledge about cameras and photography. Does a person who has never taken pictures with a camera know that the trigger must be held halfway to focus before taking a photo?
Although at first, I was very excited about the ability to customize the camera of the Xperia 1 III, later on, I found myself using Basic mode mainly. If it was a camera, I would know how to set up, meter, focus, and shoot quickly, but with Xperia 1 III, still tweaking those parameters is more complicated and sometimes can miss moments that need to be recorded. Moreover, Xperia 1 III is still just a smartphone after all, with camera hardware limited in sensor size, and pixel size, sometimes it doesn’t just have to be a manual adjustment to make the image better, but computational photography, helps from new software is what we need.
During use, I found the device’s Liveview screen not very reliable. The image when viewed through Liveview feels blurred, reducing details like viewing a cropped image, but when it is finished, the image is normal. Sometimes I look at Liveview and don’t know if the subject is sharp or not.
With automatic mode, Xperia 1 III for good, sharp photos and true-to-life colors in bright enough conditions.
The Xperia 1 III doesn’t have a dedicated night mode, but when it detects a low-light scene, it will still try to improve it by stacking images. At that time, we need to pay attention to keeping the camera steady to keep the image sharp. However, the low-light image quality of the Xperia 1 III does not retain much detail in bright areas.
The ultra-wide-angle camera on the Xperia 1 III has a large resolution of 12MP, so the image has better detail than other devices on the market, and the image is not distorted too much.
The Xperia 1 III’s telephoto camera has two focal lengths, 70mm and 105mm (equivalent to the 35mm system), allowing you to be more creative with your shooting angle. However, I don’t know if the problem is on my device or the Xperia 1 III in general, but sometimes it’s difficult to focus with this telephoto camera, the focus area is prone to jumping especially when there is another object in front of the subject. Sony will fix it with a software update.
The Xperia 1 III’s selfies and font removal are better than I expected, most of them can even be posted without any further editing. The background is naturally smooth, the subject is separate.
One thing that I regret not having experienced much is the Xperia 1 III’s video recording capabilities, with Cinema Pro software. This is a video recording software for professionals, with a full range of options such as resolution, frame rate, and focal length,… Videos are saved as projects for easy processing and workflow more tidied. It will be difficult for a non-videographer like me to appreciate exactly what the Xperia 1 III has to offer with Cinema Pro.
Battery life exceeded expectations
Xperia 1 III is equipped with a 4,500 mAh battery, an increase of 500 mAh compared to the previous generation. But considering the device has to “carry” the Snapdragon 888 chip with a 4K 120Hz screen, at first I was not too confident about the usage time of this smartphone.
But in fact, Xperia 1 III has surpassed its expectations. With a high average usage frequency, the device can be on-screen for up to 5-6 hours. Unless you plan to go out to shoot or record videos, you need to consider bringing a power bank, but if you only use it every day, rest assured that the Xperia 1 III can handle it.
Xperia 1 III supports a maximum charging capacity of 30W, advertised by Sony to be able to charge 50% of the battery in 30 minutes. When I charge, the first 30 minutes of charging is indeed very fast, up to 50%, but later on, the device will charge slowly, this is Sony’s way to maintain longer battery life. It takes nearly 2 hours to fully charge the device to 100%.
Sony has created its substance in the Xperia 1 III, but it is clear that this is not a product for the masses. The machine has a distinctive design but looks unusually long and has a lot of buttons. It has an excellent screen, but not a lot of content exploits it. It has powerful camera hardware but needs users with photography knowledge. It can be said that this is a super smartphone, but only for those who like to learn and accept some limitations of the product.
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