Phone Comparisons: Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II

AH Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II comparison
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Sony had introduced its new compact flagship earlier today, the Sony Xperia 5 II. In this article, we’ll compare the original Sony Xperia 5 vs the Sony Xperia 5 II. These two phones do have a lot in common when it comes to the design, but they are somewhat different on the inside. That is not surprising considering that these are two different generations of phones we’re talking about.

The Sony Xperia 5 II came about a year after the Xperia 5, and it does improve the phone in some ways. This is still the company’s “compact” flagship. We say compact, even though this is not exactly a compact phone in the true sense of that word. It’s nowhere close to the size of the company’s “Compact” lineup. Sony, unfortunately, does not manufacture such devices any longer, even though they were amongst the company’s most popular phones.

The Sony Xperia 5 and Xperia 5 II are kind of compact for today’s day and age, though. Both phones are quite narrow, while they’re also shorter than most flagship phones out there. They also weigh less than most other flagship smartphones. That being said, this should be quite an interesting comparison, let’s kick off the Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II comparison, shall we.

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Specs

Sony Xperia 5Sony Xperia 5 II
Screen size6.1-inch fullHD+ OLED display (60Hz)6.1-inch fullHD+ OLED display (120Hz)
Screen resolution2520 x 10802520 x 1080
SoCQualcomm Snapdragon 855Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
RAM6GB8GB
Storage128GB; Expandable (up to 1TB)128GB/256GB; Expandable
Rear cameras12MP (f/1.6 aperture, 1.4um pixel size, Dual Pixel PDAF, 5-axis OIS, 26mm lens)
12MP (f/2.4 aperture, 52mm telephoto lens, predictive PDAF, 5-axis OIS, 1.0um pixel size)
12MP (f/2.4 aperture, 16mm ultrawide lens, 1.0um pixel size)
12MP (f/1.7 aperture, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS, 24mm lens)
12MP (f/2.4 aperture, 70mm telephoto lens, PDAF, 3x optical zoom, 1.0um pixels size)
12MP (f/2.2 aperture, 16mm ultrawide lens, 124-degree lens, Dual Pixel PDAF)
Front cameras8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)
Battery3,140mAh, non-removable,  18W fast battery charging (USB Power Delivery 2.0)4,000mAh, non-removable, 21W fast battery charging (USB-C PD)
Dimensions158 x 68 x 8.2mm158 x 68 x 8mm
Weight164 grams163 grams
ConnectivityLTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.1, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C
SecuritySide-facing fingerprint scannerSide-facing fingerprint scanner
OSAndroid 9 PieAndroid 10
Price$779$949.99
BuyAmazonPre-sale September 29OnePlus

Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II: Design

The design of these two phones is extremely similar. Both phones utilize 21:9 display aspect ratio, and are quite narrow and tall (for the display size). Both phones do include some bezel around the display though not much. The thickest points are above and below the display, but thanks to them, neither of the two phones includes a display camera hole, or a display notch, and that is something many people will appreciate.

Displays are flat on both phones, though curved glass is included on top of them. The back side of the two devices looks quite similar as well. You’ll find glass on the back of both phones, and a camera module which hosts three cameras. On both devices, those three cameras are vertically-aligned, and placed in the top-left corner of the phone’s back side. Both camera modules do protrude on the back, by the way.

Now, these two devices are slippery, quite slippery. Luckily, they are not as large as many other flagships, so they’re easier to use with one hand. Both devices are lighter than the competition, and both include a physical camera shutter on the right side. Speaking of which, you’ll also find a fingerprint scanner on the right, along with a physical power / lock key. The volume up and down buttons are placed on the left.

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A Type-C port can be found at the bottom, along with the main speaker. At the top of the device, you’ll find a 3.5mm headphone jack, which is a rarity when it comes to flagship phones. The secondary speaker is placed above the display, on both of these devices. As you can see, they do look extremely similar.

Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II: Display

On paper, the two displays are quite similar, but there is one major difference between them. The Sony Xperia 5 II comes with a 120Hz refresh rate display. The Xperia 5 is limited to 60Hz. Other than that, both phones include a 6.1-inch fullHD+ (2520 x 1080) OLED HDR displays. Those displays are flat, while a curved glass is placed on top of them.

Xperia 5 II in hand viewing one hand

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If you don’t care about the refresh rate, these two panels are quite similar in terms of output. They do provide really crisp images, with great color balance, and are quite vivid. They are easily visible outdoors, and do offer great viewing angles as well. That refresh rate difference is quite noticeable, though. The Sony Xperia 5 II definitely offers a more compelling display than its predecessor, in that regard.

The difference between 90Hz and 120Hz displays is not that obvious, but a jump from 60Hz to 120Hz certainly is. Scrolling will feel immensely smoother, and you will notice that difference while using your phone constantly. If you’ve never used 120Hz displays, the difference probably doesn’t matter to you, but once you try it out, it’s really hard going back to a 60Hz display. So, keep that in mind.

Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II: Performance

What about the performance? Well, both of these phones are blazing fast, to say the least. The Snapdragon 855 fuels the Xperia 5, which is one of Qualcomm’s flagship SoCs for 2019. The Xperia 5 II does come with a newer Snapdragon 865 SoC, which is faster, but you won’t notice that the vast majority of the time. It is also worth saying that the Xperia 5 II comes with more RAM, 8GB compared to 6GB.

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During the general use of the phone, you won’t notice the difference. Both phones blaze through the UI, handle browsing like champs, the same goes for content consumption. When it comes to launching apps and especially games, the Xperia 5 II is a bit faster. Both smartphones can handle graphically-intensive games without a problem, by the way, so don’t worry about that. The software on these two phones is not heavy, and it’s well-optimized, which is one of the reasons behind such great performance.

Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II: Battery

The Sony Xperia 5 shipped with a 3,140mAh battery. That battery was not exactly something to brag about on a 6.1-inch display. Well, Sony has decided to improve things with the Xperia 5 II, as it included a 4,000mAh unit this time around. Now, this phone does offer a considerably higher refresh rate, so such a bump was definitely necessary. Even if you do end up using such a high refresh rate, the Sony Xperia 5 II probably won’t disappoint you.

The Xperia 5’s battery life wasn’t great, but you can expect things to improve with its successor. You should be able to get over 5.5-6 hours of screen-on-time on regular use, well, at least most of you will. Do note that graphically-intensive tasks will affect this, of course. We haven’t been able to test this phone’s battery just yet, so do take this with a grain of salt until we publish our review.

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Now, both devices do support fast charging. The Sony Xperia 5 II does support 21W USB-C PD fast charging. The Xperia 5 is limited to 18W fast charging, so it’s lacking in that regard. Sony says that you can charge the Xperia 5 II up to 50-percent in 30 minutes. Do note that the 21W USB-C PD fast charger is not included in the box, though. Wireless charging is not supported on either device.

Sony Xperia 5 vs Sony Xperia 5 II: Cameras

When it comes to cameras, these setups are somewhat similar, but not identical. Sony improved things a bit with the Xperia 5 II, even though we’re still looking at three 12-megapixel cameras here. So, what about the final product, what we’re most interested in? Well, the Xperia 5 was quite capable in that regard, while its successor takes things to a new level.

Xperia 5 II Camera Inhand 2 Large

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Images taken with the Xperia 5 II’s main camera turn out to be quite detailed, sharp, and vivid… during the day. Its ultrawide camera is also quite capable, while the telephoto unit will enable 3x optical zoom, compared to 2x optical zoom on the Xperia 5. In low light conditions, the Xperia 5 II is the better device of the two. Images do turn out a bit brighter, while the phone has better control over grain, and offers more detail as well.

The Sony Xperia 5 II offers a better camera experience overall, no doubt about that. The images taken from these two selfie cameras are quite similar, though. They’re not the best we’ve seen, but they’re far from being the worst. Truth be said, you won’t find much to complain, as you’ll get enough detail from both, just don’t expect great results from those selfie cameras in low light. What sets the Xperia 5 II apart is 4K HDR 120fps slow-motion video recording, which looks great, to be quite honest.

Audio

Both devices ship with stereo speakers. The main speaker is located at the bottom of both devices, while the secondary is set above the display. Both phones also include a 3.5mm headphone jack at the top. Dolby Atmos is supported on both phones, and both devices offer hi-res audio. The Xperia 5 II speakers do seem to provide more sharpness, while both phones provide similar sound in terms of loudness.

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The distortion is very minimal on both phones, and only somewhat noticeable at the highest of volume settings. Sound via headphones is great, that goes for both devices, even though the Xperia 5 Ii does shine in that regard. The sound is great across the spectrum, while you’ll also get some bass as well, but not too much, so the vocals won’t be drowned in the process. Sony did a great job with audio here.