Sony Xperia Z5 and Z5 Premium Review


Welcome to the 2016 Sony Xperia Z5 review. It’s been awhile since our last Sony mobile phone review on the forgotten and underrated Sony Z Ultra. Sony is still in financial trouble but there are signs of life beyond it’s now core business of being a ‘Playstation’ company. It needs a tech hit other than the console that allows people to remember the brand and mobile phones are a perfect fit. Sony mobile phones have always been near the top of the charts in terms of specifications and design and the latest Z5 and more so the larger screened Z5 Premium are perfect examples. The Sony Z5 is priced around the $850 although the RRP is $999 and the Z5 Premium is priced around the $1000 although the RRP is $1200.

The Z5 and Z5 Premium are really good phones without a doubt. First of all the difference between them is more than size, the Z5 Premium happens to be the world’s first phone with a 4K screen! Regardless of model the images and screen quality are excellent, the best way to describe the quality is better than the washed out colors iPhone 6S but not quite as impressive as the amazingly bright Samsung Galaxy S7. When checking out the 4K screen demo on the Z5 premium it was difficult to pick the difference unless side but side.

In terms of construction both have to range build and materials. We cannot fault anything in regards to how the Z5 or the Z5 Premium are put together or feel. The Z5 Premium though does feel and look better especially in silver trim. The standard rectangular shape and reflective surfaces look and feel expensive.

In terms of hardware the both have the latest tech but the Z5 Premium is the world’s first 4K screen and yes there is a subtle difference. We honestly couldn’t find anything critical missing from the spec list except for a missing heart rate monitor (not unusual) and a IR blaster which is an odd omission considering they still sell branded TVs. That said not many phones have them these days.

In terms of use the Sony Z5 and Z5 Premium have minimal changes to the stock Android interface. That said there are a ton of additional Sony Apps on board but few are truly useful over the long term. We know because we still use the Z Ultra everyday. The lack of in your face interface modifications unlike other brands means it actually works even better.

This is short review since Android based phones like the Z5 and Z5 Premium can literally do everything. The only really differences are construction, brand image and if they have useful functionality out of the box. Both are expensive but you will be happy with either although we prefer the Z5 Premium. It’s a pity all that design will probably be hidden beneath a rummer case of some sort.


  • Sony Z5 and Z5 Premium
  • Network
    Quad-band GSM – All
    Tri-band 3G – All
    Tri-band 4G – All
  • Design
    Touch screen
  • (Z5) L146 x W72 x D7.3 mm (Z5 Premium) L154.5 x W75.8 x D7.8 mm
  • Weight (Z5) 159 grams (Z5 Premium) 180 grams
  • Display
    5.2 inch 1080 x 1920 LED Triluminos
    5.5 inch 2160 x 3840 LED Triluminos
  • Camera
    23MP auto-focus LED Flash
    2nd forward facing video call camera 5MP
  • Video Camera
    4K UHD 30FPS main video camera
  • Connectivity
    Wi-Fi,  NFC, Bluetooth V4
  • CPU
    Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 + Quad-core 2.0 GHz Cortex-A57
    Separate Andreno 430 Graphics CPU
  • Memory
    3Gig RAM
    Up to 32 Gig for user
    Up to 200 Gig micro-SD expansion
  • Features
    A-GPS, Compass, Accelerometer, Gyroscope
    Proximity, Ambient Light, Barometer
    UV, Heart rate, Barometer, RGB, Fingerprint
    FM Radio with RDS
    Speaker Phone/Hands free
    Li-Po 2900 mAh battery or Li-Po 3430 mAh battery
    Up to 22 Days Standby
    Up to 17 hours Talk Time
  • Price history
    Approx (Z5) $850 AUD (Z5 Premium) $1000 March 2016 (Outright)