HTC does make good cameras when it puts its mind to it. We'll give it that. In fact, this is probably the bit of the HTC Titan that it has the most control over (aside from physical design) and we have to say we were really pleased with what we were given.
8MP is no slouch but, as readers are often quick to point out, it's not all about the megapixel count but the quality of the processor, the lens, the software and so on. Luckily for the HTC Titan, it's all spot-on here with a 28mm lens with f/2.2 aperture and BSI sensor for helping when light isn't so good.
Firstly, having a camera button helps. You don't have to fiddle around with getting your grip on the phone a certain way or digging through menus that may be hard to see on a bright day. Wherever in the Windows Phone 7.5 operating system you may be, a long press on the camera button will take you into the camera screen.
It's fairly basic on the surface, with buttons to just switch to front-facing mode or video, but when you get into the menu, budding Mario Testinos will be like kids in sweet shops.
You're given a plethora of scene modes, providing Auto is not to your taste although, for the majority of people, it will be enough. Plus a panoramic mode, options to control ISO levels, face detection and (our favourite), the option to switch to burst photography to take five pictures quickly in succession are all present.
Ideally, this would be at hand on the main screen because you may want to take a few bunches of pap-style pictures in one go without having to delve into the menu, but as it is, you can't do it that way.
There are three LED light modes - on, off and automatic. Normally we wouldn't mention these, because they're so obvious, but we noticed in testing that even when we put our HTC Titan on 'Always on' mode for the light, it completely ignored us.
Like a petulant child, the light refused to come on and insisted on doing it its way where it would only give us illumination when it thought it was best to do so. Annoying.
When you do get your snaps on the computer, they're really sharp and clear. We were really pleased with results taken in both full daylight and darkness where the light managed to illuminate it all for us.
HIGHLIGHTS: Flash bathes subjects in good light - maybe too much light sometimes
BLUR: Taking photos in pitch black, it's hard to get a focus
FLASH: But when you do, it is amazing. Almost as good as a proper flash
DULL: Pictures taken in good light come out well, although the white balance can be a bit off
CLEAR: The white balance isn't always off though
LIGHT: Taken in pitch black with the light doing a good job
PANORAMA: Panorama mode is a bit hit and miss. And we thought we had steady hands!