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HTC One X Camera Phone Review

If you've seen the adverts, then this is the camera phone used to video and photograph a fashion shoot... while skydiving. Find out how it performs in our review.

| HTC One X in Camera Phones

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Rear

This mobile phone is being advertised as a camera, used by a photography student on a fashion shoot, while skydiving. It's also a high-end, top of the range, all singing, all-dancing Android phone with a huge 4.7inch screen, high resolution 720p display, quadcore 1.5ghz processor, 1GB ram, as well as an 8 megapixel camera.

HTC One X Features

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Lens
Htc One X White Lens

The phone has a number of options and effects in the built in camera application including: Slow motion video, Shooting modes: Auto mode, HDR, Panorama, Portrait, Group portrait, Landscape, Whiteboard, Close-up, Low light shooting modes, Digital effects: Distortion, Vignette, Depth of field, Dots, Mono, Country, Vintange, Vintage Warm, Vintage cold, Greyscale, Sepia, Negative, Solarize, Posterize, Aqua.

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Home Screen
Htc One X White Home Screen

These are just the digital effects built into the camera app, with a huge number other apps available. As it runs Android you have a massive range of popular apps available most of them free, including Instagram, Retro Camera, Pudding Camera, Cartoon Camera, AfterFocus, FxCamera, to name just a few.

Key Features

  • 8 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor
  • 1.3 megapixel front camera
  • 28mm f/2.0 AF lens
  • 1.5GHz quadcore
  • 4.7 inch 1280x720p gorilla glass screen
  • GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Full HD video recording
  • ISO 100-800
  • Single LED flash
  • 1GB RAM, 32GB Storage
  • Digital effects
  • Android 4.0.3 (aka Ice Cream Sandwich)

HTC One X Handling

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Front

- The HTC One X feels well built with a smooth rear plastic body and large front screen and despite being very thin feels sturdy. On the top of the phone is the on/off and lock/unlock button. At the bottom of the screen are three touch buttons, used to go back, to home or the switch app button. There are no other buttons or controls for the phone, with the phone completely operated using the touch-screen. Taking photos involves using the camera app and pressing the shutter button on the screen.

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Camera Options
Htc One X White Camera Options

Menus – On one side is the mode button with the following modes: Slow motion video, Auto, HDR, Panorama, Portrait, Group portrait, Landscape, Whiteboard, Close-up and Low light. The settings button, lets you can choose which camera to use, the main or front camera. Other options include self-timer, image resolution, video quality, review duration, image adjustments (exposure, contrast, saturation, sharpness (+/-2)), ISO100 - 800, white balance, continuous shooting, camera options let you choose between 4:3 / 16:9. A grid can also be switched on.

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Effects
Htc One X White Effects

Battery life - The HTC has a non-replaceable 1800mAh lithium ion battery that should give reasonably good battery life, however Android phones are known to sap battery life, particularly if they feature a large screen like this one. We didn't find the battery life to be too poor, although we are used to charging our own phone daily.

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Htc One X White Top
Htc One X White Top

Speed – We tested the camera's performance at focusing, shutter response, shot-to-shot time, continuous shooting etc. and have posted the results below. To test this we took 6 or more shots and calculated the average, so that consistent results were produced.

Shutter Response including Focus   0.2 secs
Time to unlock the phone and take a photo   3.9 secs
Time to switch phone on and take a photo   14.4 secs
Shot to shot   0.8 secs
Shot to shot with flash   0.9 secs
Continuous shooting   6 fps (up to 99 shots)

HTC One X Performance

Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own sample photos, review and product ratings.

HTC One X Sample Photos

Sample Photos - The camera has a built in LED flash, but this did little to improve portrait shots, and simply added red-eye.

HTC One X Lens test images

Lens Performance - Detail is quite low, and digital zoom is best avoided as this emphasises noise and pixels. Dynamic range is poor. Exposure could be better with images coming out a little under-exposed, with quite dark shadows. Noise is visible in outdoor shots in bright sunlight. HDR mode helps noticeably. The images are soft at the left edge. There is noticeable purple fringing in the shot of the trees, and for some reason it's also made the tree pink/purple!

HTC One X ISO test images

ISO Noise Performance - Noise is visible in ISO100 shots, although there is little increse when going up to ISO200. At ISO400 noise becomes stronger, with another slight increase at ISO800.

HTC One X White-balance test images

White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) gives a magenta result under tungsten lighting, with the tungsten preset doing a better job. AWB performs fairly well under fluorescent light, with the fluorescent preset giving a warmer result.

HTC One X Camera Phone Review: Panoramic | 3.0 mm
Panorama mode - The camera has a panoramic mode, this lets you take a photo, then when you move the camera for the next photo a green box moves as you do, and the camera automatically takes the next 4 photos, stitching them together at the end.

HTC One X Digital filters

Digital Filters - The HTC One X has a large number of digital effects built in to the camera, some of these, for example the fish-eye effect can be altered to pinch the image, as well as change the position of the effect. There are also a large number of other apps available for Android.

Video - Video quality is reasonable, although digital zoom is best avoided. It's possible to take full resolution (16:9) photos while recording video with no noticeable interuption to the video.

Value For Money

The HTC One X is available for £410 sim free. Alternatives include the iPhone 4s (8mp, 3.5inch screen) available for £499, Sony Xperia S (12mp, 4.3inch screen) available at £359, Samsung Galaxy S3 (8mp, 4.8inch screen) available for £489, Nokia N8 (12mp, Xenon flash, 3.5inch screen) available for £299, and the Nokia PureView 808 (41mp, 4inch screen) priced at £499 sim free. All prices are for sim free versions.

HTC One X Verdict

The HTC One X is without doubt a very good Android phone, running the latest version of Android, with a good user interface and an excellent screen. However, the camera is reasonable at best, with the only real highlights being that it can take photos at 6fps and it has a number of built in filters (although apps can easily be put on Android phones for free to acheive the same results). If you're looking for a large screen Android phone, then this is a very good choice, and definitely to be considered, but if you're looking for a camera phone with a great camera, then this isn't it.

HTC One X Pros

Stunning screen
Extremely thin
Lots of built-in effects
Quick focus
Quick continuous shooting
Takes photos while recording video
2 year warranty

HTC One X Cons

Gets hot with continued use
Doesn't have a dedicated shutter button
Lacks MicroSD slot for expansion
Poor image quality
Noise in all images
Lacks real flash


HTC One X Specifications

Front Camera
PixelsNo Data
Max ApertureNo Data
Smartphone Cameras
Smartphone Cameras
    Additional CamerasNo Data
    Max Aperturef/2
    35mm equivalent28mm
    Optical ZoomNo Data
    Image Sensor
    Pixels8Mp (Megapixels)
    Pixels (W)3264
    Pixels (H)2448
    Sensor TypeBack-lit CMOS (B.S.I.)
    Sensor SizeNo Data
    Sensor Size (width)No Data
    Sensor Size (height)No Data
    Aspect Ratio
    • 16:9
    • 4:3
    LCD Monitor
    LCD Monitor4.7in
    Screen resolution720p
    Touch ScreenYes
    Focusing modes
    • Autofocus
    • Face Detection
    Exposure Control
    Shutter speeds shortestNo Data
    Shutter speeds longestNo Data
    ISO sensitivity100 - 800
    Movie modeYes
    Video Resolution
    • 1920x1080 FullHD
    Video FPSNo Data
    Stereo SoundYes
    Other Features
    Image StabilisationYes
    USBUSB 2
    Internal Memory32000MB
    Power Source
    Battery Type1800mAh
    Box Contents
    Box ContentsNo Data

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