Sony Xperia Pro-I hands-on review

GSMArena Team, 26 October 2021.


Sony Xperia Pro-I is a sequel to the limited Xperia Pro, only this time it is intended for prosumers who know their way around photography and cinematography. It is the first phone with a 1"-Type Sony sensor, it can do 12-bit RAW output and offers plenty of camera apps to make use of the advanced camera system.

The Xperia Pro-I (where I stands for Imaging) has some notable updates over the first Pro - it's a water-resistant Xperia phone with a 6.5" 4K OLED screen that now supports a 120Hz refresh rate. The chipset has been upgraded to Snapdragon 888, there are improved cameras and lenses, and yet somehow, the phone's profile is now slimmer, and the whole thing weighs less!

The primary camera is the real showstopper on this new Xperia Pro-I. Sony has brought its 1"-Type 20MP sensor from the Sony RX100 VII on to a smartphone, which is a first for the industry. The 24mm ZEISS lens on top of this large sensor offer variable aperture with fixed F/2.0 and F/4.0 steps - not a first, but definitely a rarity, nevertheless. This camera supports real-time eye AF, 315 PDAF points. It can also do 4K video capturing at 120fps and eye-AF and object tracking for video.

The 12MP ultrawide camera now supports autofocus, and it can take macro shots in addition to stellar panoramic shots with sharp corners. The 12MP telephoto, on the other hand, has shorter reach as it now uses a 50mm lens, but it relies on a larger sensor with bigger pixels.

Sony Xperia Pro-I Preview

The Xperia Pro-I has a lot to offer beyond mobile photography. It has stereo speakers, a microSD slot, a 3.5mm jack, there is a dedicated hardware shutter, an eyelet for hooking a strap like a digital camera, and a number of mics for high-quality audio recording.

The phone can also act as an external monitor and controller to a number of popular Sony cameras. You can also pair it with a new Vlog monitor accessory with an external magnetic display, which can turn the triple rear camera into an unmatched vlogging machine.

Let's take a look at the specs.

Sony Xperia Pro-I specs at a glance:

  • Body: 166.0x72x8.9mm, 211g; Glass front (Gorilla Glass Victus), glass back (Gorilla Glass), aluminum frame; IP65/IP68 dust/water resistant (up to 1.5m for 30 mins).
  • Display: 6.50" OLED, 1B colors, 120Hz, HDR BT.2020, 1644x3840px resolution, 21:9 aspect ratio, 643ppi; Runs at 1096 x 2560 pixels except for select use cases.
  • Chipset: Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm): Octa-core (1x2.84 GHz Kryo 680 & 3x2.42 GHz Kryo 680 & 4x1.80 GHz Kryo 680); Adreno 660.
  • Memory: 512GB 12GB RAM; UFS 3.X; microSDXC (uses shared SIM slot).
  • OS/Software: Android 11.
  • Rear camera: Wide (main): 12 MP, f/2.0-4.0, 24mm, 1" type, 2.4µm, Real-time Eye AF, OIS; Telephoto: 12 MP, f/2.4, 50mm, 1/2.9", Dual Pixel PDAF, 2x optical zoom, OIS; Ultra wide angle: 12 MP, f/2.2, 124˚, 16mm, 1/2.55", 1.4µm, Dual Pixel PDAF; Depth TOF 3D.
  • Front camera: 8 MP, f/2.0, 24mm (wide), 1/4", 1.12µm.
  • Video capture: Rear camera: 4K@24/25/30/60/120fps HDR, 1080p@30/60/120/240fps; 5-axis gyro-EIS, OIS; Front camera: 1080p@30fps, 5-axis gyro-EIS.
  • Battery: 4500mAh; Fast charging 30W, 50% in 30 min (advertised), USB Power Delivery.
  • Misc: Fingerprint reader (side-mounted); Stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos; NFC; 3.5mm jack; shutter key.

Sony Xperia Pro-I seems like one potent flagship, at least for people who know what they will be doing with it, and we cannot wait to see it in action!

Reader comments

  • Anonymous
  • 20 Dec 2021
  • Mk3

The limitation lies in Qualcomm Spectra 580 ISP.

  • fromJapan
  • 13 Dec 2021
  • RLU

For a product with the catchphrase "a real camera in a smartphone," it seems half-baked. Sales points 1.0-inch image sensor with unparalleled descriptive power A shutter button that looks like a camera However, the 1.0-inch im...

  • Lukemo
  • 28 Nov 2021
  • thp

Asus ZenFone 8 Flip.