HTC 7 mozart

The camera on the HTC 7 Mozart is one of the few features that can set it apart from other Windows Phone 7 handsets.

Sporting a rather snazzy 8-megapixel camera, the HTC 7 Mozart boasts the best camera of the HTC Windows Phone 7 launch line-up. The interface, however, is exactly the same as the HTC HD7 and HTC 7 Trophy.

One aspect that we really like is the ability to go straight to camera from the lock screen – if you press the shutter button down for a couple of seconds while the handset is locked, the camera springs into life – even if you have a PIN number in place.

This makes it quick and easy to get shooting, and keeps your content safe from prying eyes if your HTC 7 Mozart is PIN-protected as the only other screen you can get to is the PIN entry screen.

Although we didn't have a problem with it, it's worth noting that this means your camera could potentially start shooting in your pocket.

The settings menu is quite straightforward, although it's frustrating that it doesn't revert directly back to the camera after you choose a setting – you have to keep hitting back until you get there. It's nice that you get a small preview on the edge of the screen as you look through options, though.

It's a little annoying that the autofocus will only work on the centre of the image; we miss the touch-to-focus we've enjoyed on the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4.

HTC 7 mozart

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AUTOMATIC: This photo was taken with all settings set to auto – as you can see, the colours are bright and the camera has differentiated between the different shades of red quite nicely

HTC 7 mozart

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LANDSCAPE: Taken with the auto-scene Landscape setting, you can see that the camera has struggled a little with the brightness in the top-left corner, and the leaves of the tree in the distance have lost all definition

HTC 7 mozart

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UP CLOSE: We couldn't get the HTC 7 Mozart to take a shot on macro mode without a lot of blur – this was the closest we got. It could do with some auto-shake correction, a slightly less-stiff shutter button or an on-screen button instead

HTC 7 mozart

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HTC 7 mozart

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HTC 7 mozart

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ZOOM: The camera on the HTC 7 Mozart offers 6x digital zoom. The full zoom is, as you might expect, not the best quality – very pixellated. At this level of zoom, the camera also picks up even the slightest wobble so getting a fuzz-less shot was very difficult

HTC 7 mozart

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MONOCHROME: The other effects are pretty standard fare; black and white is not bad although again the camera struggles a little with bright light

HTC 7 mozart

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OLDEN TIMES: We found an old shop for the specific purpose of testing the sepia effect – it's a little bit too orange for our liking

HTC 7 mozart

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REVERSAL: The negative effect works quite well here, making the autumnal trees look like they're blossoming in the spring time

HTC 7 mozart

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SOLAR POWER: Solarize is one of those effects we're not sure why manufacturers bother including – does anyone actually use these? The one on the HTC 7 Mozart is all right, we suppose

HTC 7 mozart

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FLASH: The flash on the HTC 7 Mozart is very bright indeed – a little too bright for most portrait shots. The double-flash makes the shot very slow, especially because it's preceded by the camera shutter sound. The number of times we moved the handset before the shot had actually taken was ridiculous.

For all we hate on that Xenon flash for slowing us down, you can't deny it does a good job. The problem is that you have to hold still while it gets on with taking the picture, so you often end up with a bit of blur.

HTC 7 mozart

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DARKNESS: Without the flash, low light images are very dark with little definition

HTC 7 mozart

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FANCY TOOLS: A couple of faux-professional imaging tools have been included; metering mode can be used to determine how much light a shot needs and Flicker control reduces distortion when shooting computer monitors and television screens. These seem a little superfluous for a phone camera and we didn't see a great deal of difference with or without them, but it's a nice nod to real photography from the HTC 7 Mozart

HTC 7 mozart

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TOO QUICK: Sport mode is nigh on pointless if you're using the flash because it takes so long to actually take the picture, you'll never get the shot that you want. It's much quicker without the flash but not fast enough to do away with any blur, as you'll see in the photo above

HTC 7 mozart

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COASTING ALONG: In the absence of an actual beach to test this mode out on, we had to make do with these trees. Hopefully one of them is a beech tree. The light is softened to lessen the harshness of the glare on a beach – although we're not sure we'd recommend you take any smartphone to a sandy beach unless well protected

HTC 7 mozart

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COUNTERING CANDLES: Candlelight mode offers a cold blue wash to temper the warmth of candle flame – we can't help but feel it comes on a bit strong