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HTC Touch Diamond 2 review | Digital Camera

Published on: Wednesday, June 24th 2009                   Written by: Ilse Jurrien - Photography by: Mark Peters

HTC Touch Diamond 2 digital camera

HTC Touch Diamond 2 digital camera

Mobile photography with the HTC phone

Mobile photography is still in its infancy in this time and age. It's not that the effective resolution doesn't make huge leaps forwards, those who have a tiny bit of experience and digital photography skills know that this does not equal quality. It would get you in a split being a manufacturer. The marketing wants faster and flashier specifications, and one of the features that is reasonably easy to apply is a higher amount of pixels. The R&D department in that case, is confronted with a rather impossible quest, to keep pixel quality as high as possible and at the same time lift mobile photography to a higher level. After all, there is clearly potential in that field.

Photographing with the HTC smartphone

Photographing with the HTC smartphone

Activate the HTC digital camera

The power of mobile photography is the fact that the device is with you at all times. In every situation imaginable, someone has a mobile phone at hand and thus the opportunity to take pictures. This is a nice theory however; in practice it is a little more complicated. Sometimes it is even an effort to activate the camera mode although this is not the case for the HTC Touch Diamond 2. A dedicated camera link is available in the menu, which lets you start up the camera fairly fast. A transparent toolbar will appear at the bottom of the display, providing direct access to the gallery, capture mode and settings.

 

HTC Touch Diamond 2 gallery

HTC Touch Diamond 2 gallery

HTC Touch Diamond 2 photo album

The Gallery speaks for itself; the albums are directly accessible and a slideshow is activated in no-time. You can adjust the slideshow when it comes to the way of transferring from slide to slide, and the pause in between this transfer. The capture mode provides access to various themes, as well as the choice between video and still picture capture. The HTC Diamond 2 is able to capture video clips in VGA quality with quite a good result. However; High Definition is waiting just around the corner, anxious to make its grand entrance. It is quite easy to learn and adjust the settings of the Photo mode. There is a slight delay between the various menus, although not too annoying.

HTC Diamond 2 camera settings

HTC Diamond 2 camera settings

Focussing with the HTC Touch Diamond2

The quality of the camera is acceptable. The HTC Touch Diamond 2 provides auto focus (AF) and is able to focus as close as 20 cm on a subject. There is no optical zoom available, but there is a digital one, which is a vast difference compared to a standard compact camera. However; when using it, loss of quality is the result, so I would say; don't use it. The advanced options within photo mode provide access to changing the settings such as resolution, focus, digital effects and other features. The genuine photography settings can be adjusted in the main photo menu of the HTC Touch Diamond 2. For example; adjusting ISO (up to ISO 800) sensitivities and white balance.

 

HTC Touch Diamond 2 test pictures

HTC Touch Diamond 2 test pictures

Image quality of the HTC Touch Diamond II

The results from technical tests show that the HTC Touch Diamond is able to provide a reasonable photographic quality. The low ISO values do show traces of a very dominant noise reduction system, and loss of detail occurs, however; considering this is mobile photography the quality certainly can be considered fine. It becomes more of an effort for the phone's built-in camera when high ISO values from 400 have to be used. It remains a problem; a lot of color shifting, noise and loss of details. Stay on the safe side and only use the low ISO values, and make sure there is enough environmental light.

HTC Touch Diamond 2 camera phone

HTC Touch Diamond 2 camera phone

Dynamic range of the HTC Diamond 2

Something else that is difficult for a camera phone is processing/producing high contrasts in a picture. White-washed areas and dark smudged ones appear in the picture due to a limited dynamic range, causing details to be hardly visible, if even at all. If you keep this in mind, and recognize the photography situation, you can act upon it. Other than that, the HTC Touch Diamond 2 seems to be well on its way. HTC takes mobile photography seriously with this model. It is now only a matter of investing in pixel quality, and as a manufacturer, you can make a real difference.

 

HTC Touch Diamond 2 memory

HTC Touch Diamond 2 memory

HTC Touch Diamond 2 microSD memory

The memory of the HTC Touch Diamond 2 phone comes in the form of a memory card; the microSD. This format card is the most frequently used one and is considered a standard in the mobile phone segment. MicroSD comes from the SD platform, and benefits from a large market share and a market which is full of innovations. With the microSD support, a potential of 16GB of storage capacity is at hand, and the introduction of a 32GB version is expected this year. Future generations of mobile phones will probably extend their support to the SDXC (microSDXC) format. This format is an enhanced SD card with a maximum storage capacity of 2TB so far. However, it’s not there yet, so for now the HTC Touch Diamond 2 user has to settle for the microSD cards.

HTC Touch Diamond 2 battery

HTC Touch Diamond 2 battery

Standby time of the HTC Diamond 2

Quite an important improvement concerning the hardware equipment is the enhanced capacity of the Li-Ion battery. The hardware does require its energy. Certain features simply guzzle energy once activated, and it might be handy to activate these only when really required. The Lithium Ion battery features a capacity of 1100mAh, guaranteeing a standby time of a maximum of 500 hours for WCDMA and a maximum of 460 hours for GSM. In terms of call time, this means 340 minutes for GSM. However; these values are theoretical and only obtained in the most ideal circumstances. A difference in environmental temperature alone is enough to influence the capacity significantly.

 
 
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