Hands-On With The Honor 8X Smartphone

Hands-On With The Honor 8X Smartphone  - Stuart Fawcett has got hands-on with the brand-new and budget-friendly Honor 8X smartphone - let's find out what he thinks of the new device.

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Huawei Honor 8X in Camera Phones

1/160 sec | f/4.0 | 24.0 mm | ISO 5000
 

The Honor 8x is a BIG phone - It's big in your hands with a 6.5-inch display (I've large hands and it certainly fills them and more) and it's also big in the screen-to-body percentage ratio with the actual screen area being an industry-beating 91% of the overall smartphone size. This was achieved by having minimal bezel areas around the screen edges and by actually wrapping the screen electronics back under the screen on a second layer. Bezel size is further reduced by a new hidden antenna design that curves up around the bottom of the phone and partially up the sides. The phone with this antenna design also quickly picks up transmission cell changes and low signal situations to keep decent data transfer speeds.

 

1/100 sec | f/8.0 | 105.0 mm | ISO 12800
 

Back to smartphone size... some say it's almost too large and the volume buttons are certainly out of reach for typical one-handed use but personally, I didn't feel it was uncomfortable to use, but, it is certainly is at the upper end of the size possible for comfortable use on a daily basis.

 

1/160 sec | f/4.0 | 84.0 mm | ISO 4000
 

The main smartphone presentation was headed up by Honour UK Country Manager who was joined on stage by the Honour UK's Marketing Manager and together, they presented the details and the philosophy of Honor's products - 'flagship features at an unrivalled price'.  The feature bullet points do, indeed, seem very impressive for the price of the device.

The Honor 8X's late-night certified low, blue light feature is unique among smartphones and caters for eye comfort when viewing in the evenings. Its dual sim will be useful for some and its decent processor also comes with a dedicated graphics unit to speed up games performance and reduce in-game jitter. The test units seem pretty responsive and you could imagine watching movies or playing standard games on the smartphone.

The main photography interest of the night was the popular Instagram photographer Ron Timehin who is a freelance photographer and Sony Imaging Ambassador based in South London and he was given the Honor 8X to demonstrate its capabilities in the hands of a professional. 

 

1/160 sec | f/4.0 | 24.0 mm | ISO 10000
 

Ron went through a good few scenarios using the camera on the Honor 8X, demonstrating how the smartphone's AI recognised picture types and then adjusted settings for you. For example, when it's evening, the smartphone knows to lift shadows and boost vibrance. This is demonstrated in the shot of the Gherkin where touch screen focus also made sure of the focus point.

Colours of the street were preserved and amplified, and the food shots had the yellows and oranges enhanced for you. My favourite was the 6-second night exposure mode feature borrowed from the Huawei P20 - crisp clear long exposure night shots with real detail; this still 'wows' me.

Also mentioned was active movement tracking that kept cars in focus and runners sharp by increasing the shutter speed as soon as the smartphone sees movement. Finally, in the image collection, you'll spot two selfies - one with a Prism to show how the AI copes with a wide colour range and unusual images and the other with a minimal colour palette. Ron was very happy how the tones were kept and presented with the Honor 8X.

 

1/125 sec | f/8.0 | 105.0 mm | ISO 5000
 

This last image is a mash-up of the extra camera features I wanted to share, from the filter mode that shows in real time how each of the images might look with a particular filter applied to the camera options screen with simple adjustments like aperture or full pro mode that let you control everything. The Honor 8X can also be used for light painting as well as capturing star trails, silky water styles and super slow motion video. Let's not forget the Instagrammers with the bunny ears and glasses you can put on your subjects with the 8X, too.

So, is the Honour 8X a good camera smartphone?  Well, yes, for certain photographers. What I mean by this is that, for the price, it offers a lot of guidance for the new fun photographer who also uses their device for entertainment - it's one I might consider for my youngster as it has a release price of £239 and it's available from 11 October 2018 from various retailers (visit the Honor website for full details). As for the more competent photographer, they may want something with a better-quality screen display and more sensitive sensor-based low light performance.

The Honor 8X is available in Black or Blue and the blue body shows off the Honor flat rear strip very well and the 15 layers of glass look to make this a visually appealing phone. Although we could only see it in a low light hotel events room, sunlight should make this much brighter.

ePHOTOzine will, no doubt, get a unit in for a full review very soon so do keep an eye on the reviews section to see their full thoughts on the new, budget-friendly smartphone

Honor 8X Smartphone Specs:

Display

  • 6.5-inch 2340p x 1080p LTPS display with 16,700,000 colors, 397 PPI
  • 19.5:9 widescreen
  • Multiple-point touch-sensitive screen

Size and Weight

  • 160.4 mm (H) x 76.6 mm (W) x 7.8 mm (D)
  • Approximately 175g (including the battery)

Battery

  • 3750 mAh battery

Memory

  • ROM: 64 GB, RAM: 4 GB
  • Expandable storage: microSD card (up to 400GB)

Camera

  • 20-megapixel (F/1.8 aperture) + 2-megapixel dual-lens rear-facing camera with Phase Detection Auto Focus (PDAF)
  • 16-megapixel (F/2.0 aperture) front-facing camera

Audio/Video

  • 1080P full HD video recording and video playback
  • 3.5 mm headset jack

 

Word and pictures by Stuart Fawcett (JackallTog)

 

Huawei Honor 8X Photos of Equipment

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