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Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium: Does This Smartphone live Up to Sony Camera Quality?

Simon Skinner - 4 years ago

In the bustling world of Cameraphones, it can be hard to find an all-rounder that’s great at everything. In this review, we’ll be looking at the Sony XZ2 Premium, focussing, of course, on the camera. A current model in Sony’s range and one that boasts about its imaging capability, could this be the one for you?

The Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium feels like a very well put together handset. On the front sits a 13-megapixel camera and on the rear, you’ll find a 19-megapixel with 12-megapixel black and white camera. It’s quite rare that we find dedicated black and white cameras on phones, but when we do they sit as a nice feature but fear that they will be rarely used by most.

Sony XZ2 Premium specifications

  • 5.8″, 4K (2160 x 3840) HDR display
  • Dual camera 19MP f1.8 and Black & White 12MP f1.6
  • 6GB RAM
  • 64GB UFS internal memory – microSDXC support (up to 400GB)
  • Qualcomm® Snapdragon 845 Mobile Platform
  • 960 fps Super slow motion video (FHD/HD)
  • 4K HDR Movie recording
  • Battery 3540 mAh
  • SteadyShot with Intelligent Active Mode (5-axis stabilization)

Overall, not too bad in the specifications department for the Sony XZ2 Premium, and it does have some serious potential to outmuscle its competitors. After all, this is Sony we’re talking about. This is a brand that makes some of the best cameras in the world and many other cameras manufacture use Sony’s sensor technology as a platform to their cameras.

The Sony XZ2 Premium rear cover.

The Cameras

The group of cameras do quite well when taking pictures and capturing details in the underexposed and overexposed areas of the frame. The issue will arise when you ‘pixel peep’ only then will you see large amounts of sharpening to try to give a ‘crispy’ photo feel. It does ruin the image to a degree but the photos are generally usable for social media purposes.

There’s no simple way to select black and white mode, so you have to go into an icon that can only be described as a ‘pair of goggles’ and it’s there that you will find the monochrome function. Again the photos look great but pixel peeping will bring out the sharpening. This will also be due to the low pixel count in the cameras so do bear that in mind.

See below for sample shot gallery

Ease of use

Sometimes overlooked by UI [User Interface] designers is how to make the camera app simple and easy to use, preferably with one-handed operation.  One of the big issues we had in testing was moving from photo to video mode. The switch/slider was right at the top of the screen making it incredibly hard to switch from one to the other. The same issue goes for switching from rear to front facing cameras. The was plenty of room to put them on the bottom or least to the side where it’s easy to reach.

One of the features we really liked was the built-in camera button on the side. Why can’t more phones have this? It made holding the phone a lot more comfortable however it did require two hands when holding it in landscape format.

In conclusion

The Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium is a good looking phone with good cameras but lacks the punch it needs to worry its competitors. Having one of the biggest names in the camera industry you’d expect more from them and maybe that’s the problem. One day Sony will bring out a revolutionary camera-phone that will turn our heads and answer our prayers, but until then, we’ll probably keep looking.

Check out our review here, the latest in our 
YouTube #TheMeasure series don’t forget to like and subscribe to stay up to date with the latest reviews!


PhotoBite Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium review -
Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium:- The Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium falls short of fighting for the top camera phone slot. What Sony has a created is a good starting point for their camera-driven smartphones. This phone does come down to user preference and whether the cameras are a first or secondary feature for them.


  • Built in camera button on the side
  • Really brings out the colours in photos even on dull days
  • 5 axis image stabilisation


  • Lot's of sharpening on the photos
  • Tracking is okay but does require you to tap on the subject when it loses it

About the author

Read Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium: Does This Smartphone live Up to Sony Camera Quality?

Simon Skinner

Co-founder // Editor

Having spent many years working in various pockets of the music industry, and always with a camera in hand, Simon has worked with organisations such as Warner/Chappell, Food Records and ultimately, co-founding the innovative independent record label, Izumi Records before moving fully into the world of publishing in 2007. Amongst numerous other projects in the last decade, he has been responsible for a number of specialist photo trade magazines and journals for the filmmaking and photography communities, along with a coffee table book entitled, "Great Britons of Photography' which he produced with Peter Dench and Leica. Now heading up PhotoBite, Simon and the team have set themselves a task of delivering informative and inspirational content for photographers of all levels, from the beginner, shooting with smartphones, to the seasoned photographer and filmmaker.