Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray review

The power of the Xperia Arc in a small and sleek chassis

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Sony ericsson xperia ray review

The Xperia Arc is one of Sony Ericsson's flagship Xperia handsets and, as such, comes with an 8.1MP camera. Naturally, we'd have expected something a little smaller on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray. But fear not, this too has an 8MP camera, and what a great addition it is.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

The viewfinder fills the screen and subjects almost jump out because they look so clear and vivid. As we moved the camera around the room (not taking a picture, just looking for things to photograph), there was absolutely no lag or flickering. It was as though we were watching a high-definition movie. We assume this is where the Reality Display bit really kicks in.

The camera gives you scene modes, although curiously, only three: Normal, Smile Detection and Automatic. All seemed to work OK, but we just kept it on Automatic for best results.

You can also select the photo size (8MP, 6MP and 2MP) but, for some reason, you can pick between 4:3 and 16:9 in 2MP mode but not the others, presumably as that's the only mode Sony Ericsson thinks can fit in all the pixels.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

We like the fact that there's a self-timer, which is something that some of the even more advanced handsets seem to neglect.

However, one thing we don't like is the way the photo light deals with situations or, more to the point, the lack of automatic mode. The light is either on or off, and there's no option to let the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray decide what's most appropriate. That's left to the user to decide for each individual photo, and can get annoying if you're trying to take a snap in a hurry.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

NOISE: The Xperia Ray struggles in low light without the flash, and you end up with lots of noise

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

CHANGER: The phone's camera automatically switches modes and can pick out text with little effort

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

DAYLIGHT: The camera performs best in bright daylight

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

COLOURFUL: Colours in bright daylight are well represented and true to life

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

MACRO: Macro mode picks out text well

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

AUTO: Automatic scene mode gives you an accurate representation of colour

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

CONFUSED: It struggles in certain scenarios, such as sunset

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

TOO DARK: In low light, you may as well give up

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Sony ericsson xperia ray

FLASH: Even with the flash on and camera up close, it doesn't make a huge difference, unfortunately

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Another small thing we like is the option to turn the shutter sound completely off. Some handsets don't give you the option to do this, which we get annoyed by. There are occasions where taking a sneaky pic is justified, and we like the fact that we can do this without being caught if we need to.

To take photos you won't be using a camera button, because there isn't one, which is a slight shame. Instead, to shoot you tap the screen.

Normally, we'd expect tapping the screen to focus, but that's not what happens here because this camera has some kind of human-like intelligence – so much so that if you move from focusing on, say, a person to a close-up of some text, it actually recognises what you're trying to shoot and tells you (it says 'document' in the corner) and refocuses all by itself. Hurrah.

In general, we weren't overly pleased with the outcome of photographs taken with the camera. There were some issues with noise in low light settings where the flash wasn't used, and we admit that we did think they looked better displayed on the actual screen of the phone than transferred to a computer.

Tags

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory300 MB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
SAR Value0.96 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyXPERIA
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution8.1 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSony Mobile
Battery Talk Time6.83 Hour
Product Modelray
Screen Size8.4 cm (3.3")
Screen Resolution480 x 320
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)100 g
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR, REACH, RoHS, WEEE
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density297 ppi
Height111 mm
Width53 mm
Depth9.4 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time430 Hour
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product NameXPERIA ray Smartphone
Processor Speed1 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Product LineXPERIA
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Digital Compass, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number1252-3268
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing Information

Fast, powerful and drop-dead gorgeous Android phone.

9.4 mm thin and with a stylish aluminium frame: meet the Xperia ray Android phone. Watch videos and relive magic moments on the crisp 3.3' Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine. There's power beneath the sleek surface too - Xperia ray is fast, responsive and has a high capacity battery.

Package Contents
  • XPERIA ray Smartphone
  • 4GB microSD Card
Limited Warranty2 Year