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Sony Xperia X Compact Review: Small on Size, Huge on Power

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Don’t you hate it when phones just keep getting bigger and bigger. Sure, big screens are great, but the bigger your screen gets, the harder it is to grip and manipulate single-handedly. Taking this into consideration, Sony has built a 4.6” smartphone, the Xperia X Compact that’s slightly larger than the iPhone 5SE that stands at 4.0”.  The dip in screen size, however, doesn’t mean a decrease in speed or power. The S$648 phone still remains a high-performer and an excellent shooter. 

Specifications

Processor: Snapdragon 650 | RAM: 3GB | GPU: Adreno 510 | Internal Memory: 32GB

Screen Size: 4.6” | Thickness: 9.5mm | Weight: 135g

Rear Camera: 23MP f/2.0 | Front Camera: 5MP

Design

Shot by Zayne Seah
Shot by Zayne Seah

If you are a smartphone user with small hands, you will love the X Compact. This blocky device is perfect for those who are sick of large smartphones that don’t fit in their palms. Texting single-handedly on this 4.6″ smartphone is a walk in the park. 

The X Compact isn’t a particularly sleek though. At 9.5mm in thickness, the Xperia X Compact is far thicker than the 7.6mm iPhone 5SE. 

Shot by Zayne Seah
Shot by Zayne Seah

Retaining a boxy design like its brethren in the X series, the Xperia X compact looks rather blocky, but the curved edges gives it a more feminine feel compared to the Xperia X that is pretty much a clean cut cuboidal device.

Armed with a fingerprint sensor on the right side of the smartphone, your right thumb is usually responsible for unlocking the device. Hence, a leftie might find unlocking this smartphone quite troublesome.

Shot by Zayne Seah
Shot by Zayne Seah

On that same edge holds a shutter button for you to shoot photos with ease, like you normally would with a DSLR or compact camera. Being a dedicated camera phone, this will come in incredibly useful for photography enthusiasts.

Camera

Shot by Zayne Seah
Shot by Zayne Seah

The rear shooter on the X Compact is honestly the highlight of the device. The 23MP, f/2.0 camera is capable of shooting high-resolution photos that shine in terms of detail and clarity. The colour reproduction is also done with high-fidelity and the camera doesn’t oversaturate the photos like other devices.

By Zayne Seah
By Zayne Seah

The image stabilisation technology on the Xperia X Compact is also impressive since it has a 5-axis digitl image stabilisation, which is one notch higher than the 4-axis OIS found in the Zenfone 3s and the Mi 5. If you have shaky hands, this will be an incredibly useful feature. 

By Zayne Seah
By Zayne Seah

There is also a motion-tracking function that lets you shoot things that are moving and your device will ensure that the focus is kept on your subject, instead of your surroundings. So if you are shooting a moving vehicle or just your children playing around the field, this camera would be perfect for you. 

The selfie shooter, is a 5MP camera that does its job well, but don’t expect high-res shots from it and it can in no way, compete with the powerhouse on the rear. 

Performance

By Zayne Seah
By Zayne Seah

The X Compact did far better than I had expected in the performance department. The Snapdragon 650 processor alongside the 3GB RAM really did a good job balancing the needs of the phone. This power-efficient processor scored an AnTuTu rating comparable to the Xperia X itself(S$898), which is S$250 more expensive than the X Compact.

When I ran the phone myself, I experienced near 0 lags during my day-to-day activities. Multitasking with Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat and Instagram was effortless and smooth.

Battery Life

By Zayne Seah
By Zayne Seah

 

The X Compact is a power-efficient smartphone, so despite only holding a 2,700mAh battery, it can run your a work day without issues. If you use it for web browsing, texting and calling around 1-2 hours each, you should get by from 8-6 without an issue. Nevertheless, I would recomend carrying a portable charger around.

Verdict

I did like the X Compact, it was most definitely a refreshing change from huge smartphones out there in the market. If you are an Xperia fan, or someone who loves a small portable smartphone that packs on a tremendously powerful rear camera, the X Compact is for you. However, at S$648, the Xperia X Compact isn’t a particularly cheap or value-for-money device. The X Compact should probably only be bought by a niche of customers who value the X Compact’s signature features.


About the Autv-modahor

A Dentist-To-Be Dabbling in Tech Journalism:

Zayne is a writer who reports for VR-Zone, Stuff Singapore and The New Paper on all things tech-related. Follow this geek on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!

 

Zayne Seah
A tech geek going beyond specs.

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