Sony PlayStation 4 Review

Sony history in the world of video games began in 1994, with PlayStation, a stratospheric potential machine for its time, able to displace the whole world becoming the new paradigm of videogame entertainment then known. His story is then continued with PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, in 2000, and in 2007, continuing on the wake of the successful path since the first generation.

After six years, now Sony back on stage with PlayStation 4 and follows the historic competitor Microsoft launched Xbox One last week (in the us, in fact, is available from a couple of weeks). We analyze with magnifying this new console.
Specifications and performance

Under the black armor of PlayStation 4, Sony wanted to place a respectable hardware system, opting for a solution overall computing capabilities of 1.84 APU from Teraflops, which pulsate a 8-core 1.6 GHz AMD processor Jaguar and an AMD Radeon graphics chip from 800 MHz frequency. The technical equipment includes a 500 GB internal HDD replaceable, 8 GB of RAM, a Blu-ray player and GDDR5 modules Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for connectivity.

With regard to the connections on the back have an entry for power, an HDMI port, one for the PlayStation camera, an optical output and an Ethernet port for connecting to the Internet via cable. On the front there are two USB 3.0.

PlayStation 4 technical equipment is slightly higher than the Xbox One and it is rumored that the frequency of the processor can get even 1.8 GHz (something that we could not yet test). Performance is actually notable, and the console proves fast in dealing with routine operations and installations of video games that, as for Xbox One, must be installed.

Despite the promises of a few months ago, PlayStation 4 does not support 3D on Blu-ray and video games, but this will become available soon with a software update. Ultra HD resolution (only available in TVs that have this technology) will be usable only for videos and pictures, but not to play.

PlayStation 4 is not intended as an innovative or particularly identifiable looking device, but at least it has style. The line is simple and sinuous, slightly oblique shape, proves to be much more aggressive and beautiful to look at than any product that the company will do in the living room.

The case is divided into two parts by a thin line of LED that changes color depending on the State of the console. The part to the left – which is about one third of the total – is made of glossy plastic, while the right side is finished in matte plastic. On the back there is a grid for ventilation.

If you wanted to keep your console, for a mere matter of space, you will need to purchase a base cost around 20 euros. It is however true that this support does not offer a good stability to the console and the PlayStation 4 quivers at the slightest movement. If you’re not going to take an extra expense, you can still keep the PS4 vertically even without the official stand. It should be noted that the console standing exercises far less charm than the lying position, which is obviously one that was designed from the very beginning.

Sony has decided to turn the page clearly, even with regard to the controller, adding to the release of the new console, the new DualShock, arrived now in its fourth incarnation. The Japanese company has nevertheless retained a certain aesthetic continuity, optimising ergonomics and lengthening the handle, in order to provide a more secure grip and comfortable handling.

The most important improvement is, without doubt, that relating to analog joysticks, since now are concave and convex, and thus no longer guarantee better adherence to the inch. Other new features are the capacitive touchpad with two touches that can be exploited in some games, the light bar placed between triggers that changes color depending on the situation in-game, and the presence of the Share button – to share online content with your contacts – and of the Options button, which replace the old Start and Select.

The PlayStation 4 Room – available separately at a price of 60 euros – is certainly not at the top of the strategic plans of Sony, as for Kinect by Microsoft, but there is no doubt that this tool has been enhanced compared to predecessor PlayStation Eye.

The controller allows you to capture video at 1,280 × 800 pixels at 60 frames per second and it works in synergy with Dualshock 4 (or PlayStation Move), revealing the bright line between movements gamepad’s triggers, and also has a facial recognition function and a sensor for managing voice commands.

Also there is an important evolution compared to the PlayStation Eye, spelled out by the software PlayRoom, an application that allows you to interact with the virtual robots augmented reality screen visible and able to create new mini games, to do well in the company of another user. Four microphones you can also perform a variety of voice commands, such as access to the web browser. In our tests using voice commands were received well by the PlayStation Camera.

PlayStation 4 interface looks much brighter and intuitive than the PS3, and has initially by five main tabs: News, Internet Browser, Playroom (see paragraph room), Live from the PlayStation and Downloads, while other Windows are added when you install the games. In Live from PlayStation you can see live matches broadcast by other players and interact in real time with comments.

Moreover, given the large growth of the social, Sony wanted to tread even more hands on this aspect. For this, with the PlayStation 4 players can show off to your friends their sequences of swatting game just the Share button on the Duaslhock 4: the console, in fact, records of default gaming sessions and then allows you to save them in clips lasting a maximum of 15 minutes in order to then send to Facebook and Twitter (but not on YouTube). Whoever wants to, can also cut some parts and, thanks to the partnership with Ustream apps and Twitch, you can share the other player of their gaming enterprises.

Of course, all other activities – and not just the media – can be shared with others. Also interesting is the group voice chat, which allows you to talk (and send short voice messages) with seven other interlocutors involved with different games. This feature was excluding PlayStation 3 (with which you can still communicate through text messages), while the PlayStation life.

Sony PlayStation 4 also offers ancillary services such as Music Unlimited and Unlimited Videos. The first is sort of similar to Spotify music platform, which gives the ability to listen to songs streamed on the console, and holds up to 22 million tracks. The app is available for free for 14 days, but then you need to take out a subscription, available in two variants: £ 4.99 for 30 days and € 9.99 per month with the option to enjoy your music on mobile devices. Video Unlimited allows you to rent or listen to movies.

But there is bad news for those used to playing online completely free of charge: from now on, to participate in an online multiplayer online you will need to subscribe to PlayStation Plus.

The line-up of first-party titles that accompanies the launch of PlayStation 4 is not quite as rich as you would like and is composed of the only Knack, a platform that gives a nod to Crash Bandicoot. Killzone: Shadow Fall, new installment in the series of science fiction FPS from Guerilla Games and has an astonishing technical facility; Resogun, a scrolling shooter available only in digital delivery and free for PlayStation Plus subscribers. Also there are three free-to-play online multiplayer games only: the Flight Simulator set in World War II War Thunder, Warframe and, finally, DC Universe Online, a MMORPG by Superman, Batman and associates.

PlayStation 4 is the ideal game machine, and continues in the tradition of Sony putting in first place the list of media, with a strong social aspect. Nevertheless, the new console is not even a good Media Center, with the ability to watch movies (also in 3D), listen to music.

Unfortunately the line-up of exclusive at launch can count on only Killzone: Shadow Fall and Knack, but are still available all other products cross-gen triple-a. It should be pointed out also the competitive price of 399 euros (100 euros less than the Xbox One), which could prove to be an important discriminating in choosing the next-gen console.

Sony Bravia X90C Review

Sony Bravia X90C Review
Sony Bravia X90C Review

With the Sony Bravia X90C we find ourselves in the presence of a masterpiece of design, and more. Sony has pushed definitely the accelerator pedal in this area, with an aesthetic that earns so surprisingly positive by ultra-slim approach: indeed, the Bravia X90C in proof boasts an incredible result of 4.9 mm for the Panel (the thinnest point is less than the iPhone 6S).

The feeling of lightness and elegance is not penalized by the screen width of review sample: the diagonal is 65, but also themselves range from “only” 55 inches, next to a “Monster” by 75 “.

To contribute substantially to a minimal base of this magnitude also result in metal, for placing on the floor or furniture. If you would like to mount it on a wall would not remain still disappointed: the anchorage is integrated into the structure of TV and uses an optimized air flow to keep your tv even closer to the wall without taking any risk of overheating. A worthy complement, especially for lovers of quality home entertainment, wireless subwoofer the Soundbar.

The Sony Bravia X90C’s not just design, but it’s also the latest generation TVs for video quality: the resolution is Ultra HD also features extended Triluminos color space for maximum realism of the images displayed. The icing on the cake is the increasingly mature content management platform Android TV streaming and beyond.

Intelligent control

Installation is easy and painless. The evidence has opted for placing on the floor. For that on a mobile, you can mount the two side supports in two places – more or less in the Middle – depending on the size of the base. Even the cable routing is simplified, contributing to the exceptional clean design.

Sony has included – as usual – two remotes: the traditional IR and Bluetooth with touchpad. In contrast to the very high quality of the materials and finishes of mid-level plastics are noted here. In any case, you can check the Bravia X90C in every area and at any time, by digital TV media content streamed through searches on Google or YouTube, through the effective and accurate speech recognition.

Dulcis in fundo, right in the middle of the main remote control button dedicated to Netflix, the platform for on-demand content, recently arrived in Italy.

Android TV

As mentioned, Sony Bravia X90C uses the platform Android TV, and does so with a standard user interface, already proven itself extensively on Bravia X85C. Overall user experience is absolutely comparable, with some updates concerning the number of installed apps, both streaming video and music, both for gaming (provided you have a Bluetooth gamepad for the best possible experience).

The integration between the traditional and the Smart TV platform is still not perfect, but overall the experience was satisfactory, both for operating speed both in terms of breadth of the offer. Only with the last firmware update of the tv, however, operational stability has been reached on Bravia X90C, solving the problems of casting of HD video from computers connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

Image quality

The video quality is comparable to that of the Bravia X85C, being equipped with the same image processor x 1, obviously a broader Panel climbing (65 “against 55”).

The compilation of various video sources – digital terrestrial HD, BluRay, streaming – is done with precision and fidelity, especially natural colour reproduction, exceptionally, the lighter areas darker ones. Only standard upscaled content quality is not as effective, with artifacts that detract from your vision.

The best results are also using preset profiles Cinema Home and Pro Cinema, with some minor changes for backlight, ambient-light sensor is on or off and Motionflow, the latter to avoid the unwelcome effect “telenovela” in the presence of action scenes and/or video playback of action sports. Obviously, you have to know what you are doing and, as noted above with the X85C, some presets are poorly effective, with unnatural scenes.

Another area where this Bravia X90C has convinced entirely is the depth of white because intrinsic limits of Edge LED IPS Panel. Working on backlight and ambient light sensor – as mentioned above – you can achieve a result pleasing, especially in bright environments where shallow Blacks are not a problem.

Another limitation comes from the exceptionally thin Panel, which made mandatory the use of an Edge LED backlight: the corners tend to be brighter, especially the lower ones, worsening an already weak black level. In a darkened room, the defect immediately jumps to the eye, and it is possible to reach an acceptable compromise just working on the menu of the image (in particular by disabling dynamic backlight), while in the middle of the day and/or with lights on the effect is naturally reduced.

The IPS Panel, instead, fully convincing for wide viewing angle, with the overall quality that does not degrade up to extremes.

Where the Bravia X recovers so decided is in sound quality, with a deep sound, full and faithful, although only two speakers in the back. Obviously, a Soundbar wireless is a worthy addition to a true cinematic experience within the home.

Conclusion

The Sony Bravia X90C excels especially for design, able to enhance any home environment in which it is placed. Image processing is simply excellent, especially for color fidelity and to the sense of realism in the action scenes more perturbed. To make the most of the experience 4 k on a panel so big, though, unless you have a Netflix subscription Premium, you should at least HD sources to avoid the unwelcome loss of quality, perceptible with the standard resolution of digital cable, for example.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 IV Review

The series Sony RX100 arose three years ago with the goal of “bundling” a high photo quality in a compact and lightweight camera body, so as to satisfy the most demanding professionals and amateurs looking for a second camera to complement their DSLRs. The Sony RX100 IV is the fourth step in the evolution of this series, and is also a reference to the compact premium in this attractive market niche.

Compared to the previous incarnation RX100 III we find a faster shutter speed, a greater versatility when shooting video (including 4 k ultra high frequency), a removable electronic viewfinder and resolution.

The fourth installment of RX100 seems even more attractive and competitive, but Sony asks ben 1150 euros to buy, a price affordable for those on a well-stocked wallet and that he wants to invest in a product of its kind. However, price aside, this RX100 IV is a compact camera virtually perfect.

The quality of materials and finishes it lived up to expectations and confirms the attention of Sony in developing this platform for success.

The magnesium alloy frame, ultra compact size (101.6 × 41 × 58.1 mm) which, together with low weight in about three ounces (298 g including the battery and memory card) make it one of the most manageable cameras ever.

Surely this is one of the cornerstones of the series RX100, along with attractive design, the right mix between classic and modern, not to mention the strength: you can mistreat her, without adverse effects, aside from a certain delicacy rear screen, on which it is recommended to apply a protective film.

The RX100 IV is not only small, nice and solid, but also convenient to use that in the end is what counts: taking is safe even with one hand, with the pad back – at the thumb – a great help.
This compact high range is a real wonder even for not having given up the manual controls, recalling all the way the setup adopted on second generation professional series mirrorless A7.

With respect to the third series of RX100 has a texture on the aperture ring of the lens to improve the stability of grip. Obviously lacks the ability to customize the functions of some programmable buttons, very practical solution even though their small size will not be loved by users with big hands and fingers.

Control of Sony RX100 IV reaches the State of the art also and above all thanks to the removable EVF screen tilt and coupled.

The first is a 3 “TFT display with resolution of 1.28 Mp, ultra bright and defined, capable of displaying colors faithful and all the information you need before and after the shot. Can be tilted by about 45° downwards and ben 180° upward. This means that it is completely tipper and that you can click those indexed so so fashionable now, but a quality well higher than secured from smartphones. The auto-portrait mode screen swivel snap Ay in three-second delay, what else?

Impress is the retractable electronic viewfinder, from excellent quality: is OLED, with extremely high contrast and brightness, resolution of ben 2.36 Mp (almost double rear screen), anti-reflective coating Zeiss T *, total coverage of the scene, to compose it perfectly. Will be loved by those who love photographing in “traditional” way, in addition to naturally increase the stability in the shot. How to use requires a few steps necessary to pull back – after opening – but totally worth it.

Compact zoom

Zoom extension might be a sore subject of this miracle of miniaturisation in the field of photography. The lens Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T *, in fact, increased from 24 to 70 mm equivalent, with a modest range, by configuring the RX100 IV as a compact fit to travel, to portraits and street photography.

Those who want more can be considered the most powerful RX10 II, although this partial gap is fully offset by exceptional brightness, with a range of f:1 .8 -2.8.

But that’s not all: in fact, you can decide how fast it works, helping and not a little motorized zoom when shooting video.

The high-quality optics works hand in hand with an extremely fast and accurate autofocus, based on a phase-contrast system, which might seem a limit if compared to a more advanced and versatile hybrid approach that also includes the phase detection.

Sony has staked everything on speed that, in situations with high contrast and good lighting, never disappoint the most demanding users. Definitely a hybrid AF system will represent one of the upgrade on a future RX100 V. ..

Than the third generation there is a noticeable improvement in sequential shooting: the new design of the CMOS sensor, 1 “with built-in DRAM chip allows you to manage a high volume of data in a reduced time, carrying the burst to the exceptional value of 16 fps (Sony RX100 III stopped to” only “10 fps). You can capture high-quality sequences of 44 shots in JPEG, otherwise 29 RAW images with the flurry reduced to 9 fps (using class 10 SDXC memory or better).
Love the light

The 20 megapixel CMOS sensor 1 “well in a refreshed design bundles from the previous incarnation, with which it shares only the resolution. Adopt a scheme in layers, with circuits placed behind the surface and is no longer in the side as on the sensor RX100 III. This approach, as already seen, helps a lot in the operating speed, with a noticeable improvement in terms of sheer quality of scanned images.

The best performances from Sony RX100 IV are obtained under high lighting – natural or manmade – low ISO values: the dynamic range is wide, with a delightful reading light and clarity to primacy in the category.

Who likes to shoot in RAW can really pull off each image even smallest details, although the JPEG shots do not disappoint in this regard.

Up to ISO 800 performance remain strong for signal-to-noise ratio and the decay is obvious, and it could not be otherwise for a compact camera with from 1 “, which although of excellent quality fails to capture as much light as a wider and more capable APS-C, without troubling a Full Frame.

Always working in RAW, and using the optimized version of Capture One software Express for Sony, you manage to get good results, not only for on-screen display but also for printing up to A4 size. Over 1600 ISO noise, luminance, takes over, especially with the detail that holds up, requiring a longer and deeper work in post production to “Save” the shot.

The reasonable limits of this otherwise handsome RX100 IV is a value of ISO 3200, beyond which the images are virtually unusable.

3 stop ND filter deserves a nod, for the possibility of reducing the amount of light reaching the sensor: longer shutter speeds can be used with strong natural light, to suggestive images. The HDR capability (customizable) helps most extreme in backlit or when he wants to greatly expand the dynamic range.
Power video

When it comes to video, instead you return to a near complete satisfaction. Also in this case the credit is CMOS sensor new design.

The resolution passes from 1080 p of RX100 III at 4 k, with bit rates up to 100 Mbps in ben XAVC S format (need a class 10 SDXC card or higher, and with over 32 Gb capacity). But few have computers capable of managing video streams at this level, so it is better to focus on other features, far more appealing.

In fact, RX100 IV enables shooting in super slow-motion at 1000 fps, for four seconds at a resolution of 800 × 270 pixels, or 2 “to 1,136 × 384 pixels. You can register with a still high rate of 250 fps, Full HD format, in addition to the more traditional 25 and 50 fps (which did not offer the fun and excitement of a “slow motion” quality).

The shots are extremely flexible, being able to decide whether to give priority to quality or autofocus, and the ability to capture still images with resolution of 17 megapixels.

The Sony RX100 IV also offers connectivity and ancillary features. Integrates Wi-Fi and NFC, for a quick and stable connection with a mobile device on which you have installed the app – for Android and iOS – PlayMemories Mobile: it starts from the remote control to get to the transfer and sharing online photos and videos.

Sony also gives the option to install the presets PlayMemories Camera Apps directly on the camera, thus expanding the scene preset for users less practical. Just need a PC or Wi-Fi camera.

Conclusions

The Sony RX100 IV is a top-of-the-range compact stupendous. Enhances the experience of the previous incarnation, especially in terms of operating speed and video capabilities.

Will appeal to advanced amateurs and professionals who want to shoot with a miniature replica of a mirrorless reflex – or – to a completely different caliber.

The overall performance and extending the zoom makes it ideal holiday, both in the city’s outdoor, where to acquire quality photos and have fun with the exceptional versatility in the video.

The price you pay is high, like previous incarnations, but pleasure and satisfaction in using largely repay the investment.