Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra review

GSMArena team, 07 February 2018.

Display

The Xperia XA2 Ultra is equipped with a 6-inch IPS display of FullHD resolution, making for an okayish 367ppi density. While far from a flagship-grade, 367ppi is enough to avoid pixelization and even if you try, you won't see individual pixels.

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra review

Sony promises 500nits of brightness and even before we put the XA2 Ultra through our display test, it looked very promising.

In our tests, the Xperia XA2 Ultra improved over the XA1 Ultra and demonstrated an excellent maximum brightness of 630nits. The black levels are deep enough and thus the contrast ratio is excellent at north of 1500:1.

Display test 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra 0.404 631 1562
Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra 0.382 603 1579
Sony Xperia XA2 0.401 532 1327
Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus 0.548 555 1013
vivo V7+ 0.289 515 1782
OnePlus 5T 0 437
Motorola Moto X4 0.297 431 1451
HTC U11 Life 0.357 546 1529
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 0.401 519 1294
Sony Xperia Z5 0.59 583 986

Outdoor visibility is great, just like it was on the XA1 Ultra, edging out the iPhone 7 Plus in this respect.

Sunlight contrast ratio

  • Apple iPhone X
    5.013
  • OnePlus 5T
    4.789
  • Samsung Galaxy S8
    4.768
  • Samsung Galaxy S8+
    4.658
  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
    4.615
  • Motorola Moto Z2 Play
    4.459
  • Oppo R11
    4.454
  • Samsung Galaxy S7 edge
    4.439
  • OnePlus 3
    4.424
  • Samsung Galaxy S7
    4.376
  • HTC One A9
    4.274
  • Samsung Galaxy Note7
    4.247
  • Samsung Galaxy A3
    4.241
  • Nokia 8
    4.239
  • Google Pixel 2 XL (pre-update)
    4.234
  • OnePlus 3T
    4.232
  • Google Pixel XL
    4.164
  • ZTE Axon 7
    4.154
  • Samsung Galaxy Note8
    4.148
  • Meizu Pro 7 Plus
    4.147
  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
    4.124
  • Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)
    4.124
  • Huawei Mate 10 Pro (normal)
    4.096
  • Samsung Galaxy Note5
    4.09
  • Google Pixel 2 (pre-update)
    4.023
  • LG V30
    4.022
  • Huawei Nexus 6P
    4.019
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro
    3.998
  • Vivo Xplay5 Elite
    3.983
  • OnePlus X
    3.983
  • Oppo R7s
    3.964
  • Apple iPhone 7
    3.964
  • Apple iPhone 8 (True Tone)
    3.957
  • Huawei P9 Plus
    3.956
  • Meizu Pro 6 Plus
    3.935
  • Lenovo Moto Z
    3.931
  • Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
    3.918
  • OnePlus 5
    3.914
  • Samsung Galaxy C5
    3.911
  • Samsung Galaxy C7
    3.896
  • Samsung Galaxy A5
    3.895
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 outdoor
    3.879
  • Samsung Galaxy J2 outdoor
    3.873
  • Samsung Galaxy A8
    3.859
  • Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018)
    3.842
  • Sony Xperia XZs
    3.818
  • Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
    3.817
  • Motorola Moto X (2014)
    3.816
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 (2017)
    3.812
  • Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)
    3.804
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016) outdoor mode
    3.802
  • LG V20 Max auto
    3.798
  • Xiaomi Redmi Pro
    3.798
  • Sony Xperia XZ
    3.795
  • Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
    3.789
  • Apple iPhone 6s
    3.783
  • Meizu Pro 5
    3.781
  • Microsoft Lumia 650
    3.772
  • Xiaomi Mi 6
    3.767
  • Sony Xperia XZ1
    3.765
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016)
    3.756
  • Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact
    3.729
  • Apple iPhone 8 Plus (True Tone)
    3.725
  • Oppo F1 Plus
    3.709
  • Vivo X5Pro
    3.706
  • Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
    3.688
  • Apple iPhone SE
    3.681
  • Huawei Mate 9
    3.68
  • Samsung Galaxy A7
    3.679
  • Meizu PRO 6
    3.659
  • BlackBerry Priv
    3.645
  • Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra
    3.597
  • Apple iPhone 7 Plus
    3.588
  • LG G6
    3.556
  • Apple iPhone 6s Plus
    3.53
  • Motorola Moto Z Play
    3.526
  • Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016) outdoor mode
    3.523
  • Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016)
    3.523
  • Acer Jade Primo
    3.521
  • Microsoft Lumia 950
    3.512
  • Oppo R7 Plus
    3.499
  • nubia Z11
    3.466
  • Huawei P10 Plus
    3.456
  • HTC U Ultra
    3.453
  • Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
    3.445
  • Samsung Galaxy J7
    3.422
  • Meizu MX5
    3.416
  • LG V20
    3.402
  • Huawei P10
    3.379
  • Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
    3.378
  • Oppo R9s
    3.352
  • Honor 8 Pro
    3.341
  • Oppo R7
    3.32
  • Lenovo P2
    3.316
  • Archos Diamond Omega
    3.305
  • Honor 9
    3.289
  • Xiaomi Mi 5s
    3.276
  • Nokia 5
    3.261
  • Nokia 6 (Chinese version)
    3.244
  • Nokia 6 (Global version)
    3.238
  • Samsung Galaxy J2
    3.235
  • Sony Xperia X Performance
    3.234
  • Xiaomi Mi Note 2
    3.228
  • Motorola Moto X Play
    3.222
  • Oppo F3 Plus
    3.218
  • Huawei Mate 9 Pro
    3.206
  • Huawei P9
    3.195
  • Xiaomi Mi Mix 2
    3.19
  • ZTE Nubia Z17
    3.159
  • Oppo R11s
    3.153
  • Lenovo Vibe Shot
    3.113
  • HTC U11 Life
    3.108
  • Motorola Moto X Force
    3.105
  • LG Nexus 5X
    3.092
  • HTC U11
    3.089
  • Huawei Mate S
    3.073
  • Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
    3.065
  • Motorola Moto X4
    3.012
  • Sony Xperia XA1
    3.012
  • Sony Xperia L1
    2.994
  • Sony Xperia X
    2.989
  • LG Q6
    2.987
  • Huawei P10 Lite
    2.974
  • Samsung Galaxy Note
    2.97
  • Xiaomi Redmi 5
    2.951
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    2.95
  • Huawei Mate 8
    2.949
  • Sony Xperia XA2
    2.938
  • Xiaomi Redmi 4
    2.92
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3S
    2.913
  • Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus
    2.913
  • Sony Xperia XA Ultra
    2.906
  • LG G5
    2.905
  • HTC One S
    2.901
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3s Prime
    2.893
  • Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus
    2.884
  • Sony Xperia XZ Premium
    2.877
  • Sony Xperia XZ Premium (sRGB)
    2.877
  • Sony Xperia Z5
    2.876
  • Nokia 3
    2.871
  • Microsoft Lumia 550
    2.851
  • Lenovo Moto M
    2.813
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3 Pro
    2.803
  • Sony Xperia Z5 compact
    2.784
  • Nokia 2
    2.752
  • Meizu MX6
    2.751
  • LG V10
    2.744
  • Huawei Mate 10 (normal)
    2.742
  • Motorola Moto G5S Plus
    2.737
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3
    2.735
  • Huawei Honor 7X
    2.734
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (S625)
    2.714
  • Meizu M5
    2.71
  • Sony Xperia M5
    2.69
  • Xiaomi Mi A1
    2.689
  • Huawei P9 Lite
    2.679
  • Xiaomi Redmi 4 Prime
    2.679
  • vivo V7+
    2.671
  • Vivo V3Max
    2.659
  • Xiaomi Mi Mix
    2.658
  • Huawei Mate 10 Lite
    2.654
  • Oppo F5
    2.653
  • Doogee Mix
    2.642
  • Xiaomi Mi 4i
    2.641
  • Xiaomi Redmi 4a
    2.635
  • Xiaomi Mi 5X (Standard)
    2.616
  • Sony Xperia XA
    2.609
  • Motorola Moto G4 Plus (max auto)
    2.582
  • Motorola Moto G4 Plus
    2.582
  • Meizu M5s
    2.58
  • Xiaomi Mi 4c
    2.574
  • LeEco Le Max 2
    2.567
  • Microsoft Lumia 640
    2.563
  • Asus Zenfone 3 ZE552KL
    2.563
  • Xiaomi Mi Max 2
    2.561
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 5A (Y1)
    2.556
  • HTC U11+
    2.556
  • Lenovo K6 Note
    2.544
  • Lenovo Moto G4
    2.544
  • Oppo F1
    2.528
  • Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
    2.525
  • Huawei Honor 7 Lite / Honor 5c
    2.506
  • Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
    2.503
  • BlackBerry Motion
    2.494
  • Oppo F1s
    2.481
  • Motorola Moto G
    2.477
  • Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus
    2.473
  • Huawei G8
    2.471
  • Huawei nova
    2.467
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2.462
  • Lenovo Vibe K5
    2.459
  • Meizu m3 max
    2.447
  • Xiaomi Mi 5X (Auto)
    2.417
  • HTC 10 evo
    2.407
  • Huawei Honor 7
    2.406
  • Vivo V7
    2.404
  • Sony Xperia E5
    2.386
  • ZUK Z1 by Lenovo
    2.382
  • HTC 10
    2.378
  • Oppo F3
    2.376
  • vivo V5 Plus
    2.371
  • Meizu m1 note
    2.362
  • Huawei nova plus
    2.329
  • Razer Phone
    2.328
  • HTC One E9+
    2.305
  • Alcatel One Touch Hero
    2.272
  • Apple iPhone 4S
    2.269
  • Lenovo Vibe K4 Note
    2.254
  • Sony Xperia C5 Ultra
    2.253
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)
    2.249
  • Sony Xperia C4 Dual
    2.235
  • Xiaomi Mi Note
    2.234
  • Motorola Moto G (2014)
    2.233
  • LG Nexus 5
    2.228
  • Huawei P8
    2.196
  • Meizu M5 Note
    2.189
  • Huawei Honor 6
    2.169
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 2
    2.166
  • OnePlus Two
    2.165
  • HTC One X
    2.158
  • LG Aka
    2.145
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 (X20)
    2.145
  • Archos 50 Diamond
    2.134
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note
    2.119
  • Xiaomi Mi 4S
    2.095
  • Acer Liquid X2
    2.084
  • Huawei P8lite
    2.078
  • vivo V5
    2.059
  • Moto G 3rd gen max manual
    2.026
  • Xiaomi Mi 3
    2.001
  • Xiaomi Mi Max
    1.996
  • Sony Xperia E4g
    1.972
  • OnePlus One
    1.961
  • Meizu m3 note
    1.923
  • Meizu m2 note
    1.892
  • BlackBerry Leap
    1.892
  • HTC Butterfly
    1.873
  • Sony Xperia Z1 Compact
    1.772
  • ZTE Nubia Z9 mini
    1.759
  • Sony Xperia U
    1.758
  • Asus Zenfone Selfie
    1.68
  • Motorola Moto E (2nd Gen)
    1.675
  • ZTE Nubia Z9
    1.659
  • Jolla Jolla
    1.605
  • Motorola Moto E
    1.545
  • Sony Xperia M
    1.473
  • Samsung Galaxy S Duos
    1.4
  • Sony Xperia L
    1.351
  • HTC Desire C
    1.3
  • Meizu MX
    1.221
  • Sony Xperia E
    1.215

It's color reproduction where the XA2 Ultra fails to impress. Its whites lean heavily towards cyan, to the tune of a DeltaE of around 10. The average DeltaE is an okay 5.7, but the whites you'll probably notice.

Sony has some options to basically make the colors punchy in pictures and videos. The option is within the display settings and you can opt for standard picture tuning or super-vivid.

Battery life

The Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra is equipped with a 3,580mAh power pack - an impressive improvement over the 2,700 mAh backup of the XA1 Ultra, but merely 280mAh more than the XA2.

The phone supports Quick Charge 3.0, though our unit came with a 1.5A charger that fills 28% of a depleted battery in half an hour. Some regions might get the faster charger bundled. In our tests with a third-party QC 3.0 charger, the battery charged from 0% to 40% in 30min.

As on all its other phones, Sony has equipped the XA2 Ultra with Qnovo Adaptive Charging and Battery care to help prolong the life of the built-in power pack by carefully controlling charging parameters.

The XA2 Ultra aced all of our endurance tests and posted a respectable score of 100 hours.

Sony Xperia XA2 review

Our endurance rating denotes how long a single battery charge will last you if you use the Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra for an hour each of telephony, web browsing, and video playback daily. We've established this usage pattern so our battery results are comparable across devices in the most common day-to-day tasks. The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritties. You can also check out our complete battery test table, where you can see how all of the smartphones we've tested will compare under your own typical use.

Loudspeaker

The speaker on the Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra scored a Very Good mark in our loudness test, the same as the XA1 Ultra. The sound is rich and crisp, with good bass and clean high notes.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Xiaomi Mi Max 67.1 66.2 68.1 Average
Sony Xperia XA1 61.7 69.7 71.8 Average
Motorola Moto X4 67.2 71.1 80.7 Good
vivo v7+ 66.5 73.1 79.6 Very Good
Sony Xperia XA2 68.7 72.7 78.3 Very Good
Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra 68.3 71.6 81.0 Very Good
Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018) 69.2 70.6 81.6 Very Good
Huawei Mate 10 Lite 67.8 71.0 84.5 Very Good
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra 68.8 73.9 80.8 Very Good
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 78.4 71.7 79.2 Excellent
Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus 71.1 72.7 87.7 Excellent
HTC U11 Life 70.9 75.3 88.0 Excellent
Sony Xperia XA1 Plus 88.9 77.8 84.6 Excellent

Audio quality

Update 8 May: We redid the audio quality test using a Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra unit running newer software as it turned out it has fixed most of the issues we observed in our initial test. The text and numbers below have been modified to reflect these new findings.

The Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra did well with an active external amplifier, delivering an output that was as accurate as we've come to expect from smartphones these days. It's hardly the loudest smartphone around, but it's doing a decent job overall.

Plugging in a pair of headphones did little damage - a moderate hike in stereo crosstalk was all there was to it.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra+0.04, -0.05-95.689.60.00450.012-95.5
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra (headphones)+0.03, -0.04-93.088.80.0390.033-57.6
Sony Xperia XA2+68.12, -25.56-92.879.30.002616.764-87.8
Sony Xperia XA2 (headphones)+0.05, -0.02-93.088.80.0390.033-57.6
Honor View 10+0.02, -0.01 -92.692.60.00210.012-94.4
Honor View 10 (headphones)+0.17, -0.03-92.092.10.00230.092-52.8
Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018)+0.01, -0.03-92.192.20.00380.0085-90.0
Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018) (headphones)+0.30, -0.07-91.791.80.0220.206-72.4
Samsung Galaxy J7 (2017)+0.01, -0.03-92.892.80.00320.031-92.3
Samsung Galaxy J7 (2017) (headphones)+0.23, -0.15-92.191.80.0130.223-77.3

Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra frequency response
Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra frequency response

You can learn more about the tested parameters and the whole testing process here.