Sony Xperia C4 review
A well-balanced experience
My Sony Xperia C4 review highlights a smartphone that has a sensible balance of premium qualities and professional-grade selfie photography tools. It does all of this whilst avoiding the ultra-high pricing bracket that usually puts these characteristics out of the reach of the typical consumer.
A trio of colour schemes cater for a variety of tastes and whilst Sony has been keen to promote the fun ‘PROselfie’ aspect, more on this later, the subtle matt tones suggest to me that it this phone is aimed at the young adult market and above as opposed to the teen market.
The 5.5 Full HD display is sized for a superb visual experience and the fine resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels is only enhanced by the Super Vivid Mode, used when the brightness of your surroundings would normally hinder your view. A scratch resistant coating has been applied and we certainly welcome this as it should help ensure the visual experience isn’t ruined over time.
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The octa-core 1.7GHz 64-bit processor with 2GB RAM is a pretty impressive addition and ensures that a lag free experience is enjoyed during music streaming, chat, multitasking and graphically intense game play.
The Sony Xperia C4 weighs in at 147grams and is 7.9mm thick, which is pretty much on a par with other devices of the same high standard. I feel that the internal 16GB memory is also adequate for most users but a 128GB MicroSD card slot is provided for really heavy media users.
Phone Set Up
Powered by the Google Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system, the Sony Xperia C4 is pretty easy to get to grips with and supports the use of folders for grouping similar apps together. Widgets can be placed onto the home screens to provide a live feed of anything from the weather to the news or from friends social network updates on Facebook to a snapshot of your emails in your Gmail account.
If you love listening to music like me but don’t want to spend a load of cash on the HTC One M9 with its BoomSound speakers then the Sony Xperia C4 is a choice that you won’t regret.
The 97decibels produced by the Xperia C4 should be enough for anyone and the Sony sound experience combines three of its key technologies; ClearAudio+, xLOUD and Clear Bass. The Sony 3D Surround Sound technology strips out any distortion and perfectly balances the music with the option to tweak the sound further using the manual equaliser.
As I see it there are three essential features needed for a smartphone to be a success today and with 4G, Wi-Fi and GPS the Sony Xperia C4 has them all. The Miracast feature lets you duplicate your screen on a TV and Wi-Fi hotspot creation is an easy way to get your other devices online. Anything else you might like to do can be easily achieved by downloading news apps from Google Play.
Camera & Video
The main 13MP HDR camera on the Sony Xperia C4 is pretty impressive but as aforementioned it is the ‘PROselfie’ aspect of the photographic package that has received some serious attention.
The 5MP selfie camera utilises a 25mm wide-angle lens that can capture an 80-degree field of view, so it’s perfect for group selfies. Under low light conditions we see, what I think is pretty special, natural illumination recreated by the selfie soft LED flash that automatically optimises and adjusts its output for results with accurate colour reproduction.
Further camera features include:
- SteadyShot for shake free selfie video recording
- Style Portrait for enhancing your natural look in either real time or in post production
- Face In for capturing your image on one camera and placing it into the scene captured on the other
- AR Mask for creating amusing results by merging two portraits together in real time using the front and rear cameras
- Sound Photo for capturing 10 seconds of sound with animated photos that can be shared with PlayMemories Online
The Sony Xperia C4 also offers red-eye reduction, video recording with stereo sound at 1080p Full HD resolution and the possibility of downloading new camera apps as they are developed by Sony.
The 2,600mAh battery on the Sony Xperia C4 comes with a set of features that have been well thought out. There are three modes for enhancing battery standby and these include Extended Standby Mode which turns off apps when the screen goes off and instantly turns them on again when the screen is reactivated.
Extended Usage Mode can be used to boost standby by up to 14% and Ultra Standby Mode goes even further by limiting the phone to core functions only.
The asynchronous processor does its part by shutting down single cores as they are no longer needed and this helps to provide a pretty dependable 2 day battery life under mixed usage scenarios. Music playback can be sustained for up to 53 hours and video playback of up to 8 hours is possible.
Sony Xperia C4 verdict: I think that the Sony Xperia C4 is a great buy for those who want the very latest features but still have a sensible eye on their budget.
Written by: Michael Brown