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Sony’s Xperia 1 IV smartphone features ‘the world’s first true optical zoom lens’

Sony has heavily leveraged its camera expertise to create its upcoming flagship smartphone, the Xperia 1 IV, it announced. It offers a slew of innovative, image-oriented features including what it calls the “world’s first true optical 85-125mm zoom lens,” along with true 4K at 120fps, livestreaming and external monitor capabilities and a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 mobile platform chip. 

The key feature of the Xperia 1 IV is the telephoto zoom that offers an 85-125mm equivalent zoom range, enough for sports, wildlife and more. To build it, Sony appears to have used a 90-degree periscope style system, much like Huawei did with the P30 Pro. 

Sony

On top of the telephoto zoom, it has 16mm and 24mm lenses (35mm equivalent), along with a time-of-flight sensor. All three cameras use a 12-megapixel Exmor RS sensor with readout speeds of up to 120 fps. That allows the phone to record 4K 120 fps video, or the equivalent of 5x slow-motion at 4K. 

Other camera features include real-time Eye AF and real-time tracking with every lens, along with an Optical SteadyShot system. For photography, it can hit burst speeds of up to 20 fps with auto-exposure and continuous autofocus enabled on all three lenses, for both people and animals. Sony’s also promising accurate automatic white balance in challenging conditions thanks to AI.

All the lenses use Zeiss optics with a Zeiss T* coating designed to boost contrast and sharpness while reducing reflections. The front camera uses a new 12-megapixel Exmor RS sensor that’s larger than on previous models, allowing you to shoot selfies with less light. 

Sony also added some apps and software features to aid video content makers. Much like on the Xperia 1 Pro, the “Powered by CineAlta” Cinematography Pro feature allows users to record using similar parameters and settings to professional cinematographers. You can also manually adjust settings like focus, exposure and white balance, even while recording. It also features 4K HDR multi-frame shooting, allowing for videos with wider dynamic range without any loss of resolution. 

It’s also promising “the ultimate mobile gaming experience” with the Xperia 1 IV, thanks to a 120Hz HDR 6.5-inch 21:9 OLED display with 240Hz motion blur and a 240Hz touch-scanning rate. It’s powered by a Snapdragon Gen 1 Mobile Platform and uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Elite Gaming to improve performance. It also has what Sony calls “Heat Suppression power control” that automatically reduces performance at high temperatures, “even during gameplay when connected to a charger.” 

The display uses Bravia HDR remaster technology for enhanced entertainment viewing, promising “more contrast, color and clarity.” It’s also equipped with Dolby Atmos surround sound tech that’s supposed to deliver a more immersive experience for cinema. 

Sony's Xperia 1 IV smartphone features 'the world's first true optical zoom lens'

Sony

The Xperia 1 IV is designed to simplify livestreaming as well, giving you access to the Eye AF and object tracking features when using the Videography Pro mode. It can also be used as an external monitor for livestreaming from any compatible Alpha camera, and when paired with Sony’s Vlog Monitor, “users can livestream content by using the rear cameras,” Sony said. 

Other features include IP65/68 water and dust resistance, Corning Gorilla Glass Victus on front and back, 5G with sub6/mmWave, WiFi 6E, 12GB of RAM and 512GB of storage with a microSD card. It comes with a 5,000 mAh battery with wireless charging capability and can be quick-charged to 50 percent in 30 minutes. 

The price, as you’d expect from all that, will not be cheap. It’s arriving on September 1, 2022 for $1,600 to B&H Photo/Video and other Sony dealers around the US in black or purple, though the purple color is available exclusively at Sony’s website. Pre-orders open today and for a limited time, eligible customers will get Sony’s latest WF-1000XM4 true wireless earbuds thrown in for free. 

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