Sony Xperia Pro I, rather difficult repairs

The time has come for Sony Xperia Pro I too video teardown: to arrive first to the particular smartphone of the Japanese manufacturer, “pro” in name and fact, is the YouTube channel PBKreviews, with its minimalist and didactic style. Judging from the technical data sheet and aesthetic appearance, one is led to think that the device has a lot in common with the Xperia 1 III: the main difference between the two models seems to be the camera module. But no: it turns out that motherboards are completely different.

For the rest, everything takes place according to the script. The entry point is the rear shell, which is made of glass (maybe not a “pro” choice?) and therefore requires a lot of attention to avoid shattering it. Fortunately, Sony hasn’t gone too far with the adhesive, so operations aren’t more complex than necessary. That said, overall it is a rather complicated smartphone to repair: for example, the USB-C charging port is attached to the motherboard via a flat cable, so no soldering; but you have to remove a large number of components before you get there.

The same goes for the screen: basically, you have to disassemble everything possible before you get to free the flat cable that connects it to the motherboard. In short, overall the device scrapes only three points out of ten in the repairability index by YouTubers. For comparison, the Xperia 1-III scored 6 out of 10.

An interesting detail emerges from the teardown: Qualcomm’s powerful Snapdragon 888 SoC does not have dedicated heat dissipation systems. On other chips there are for example copper sheets or graphite layers, but not on the CPU. There is a metal shield surrounding it, but no heat-conducting pastes or sheets to help dissipate excess heat. It’s a rather odd choice, especially for a device designed to perform heavy workloads; and nevertheless explains the results of several reviews that report rather pronounced throttling under stress.

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