HTC 8X steps up to the plate: First camera images and video sample

The 8X features a solid 8MP shooter

Although we’re convinced that the Nokia Lumia 920’s camera sets the bar for “high end” these days, HTC is no slouch either and their Windows Phone 8X has some nifty specs going for it as well.

The 8X’s camera features an impressive F/2.0 aperture at a cozy 28mm and 8MP. It also sports a backside illuminated  (BSI) sensor and a dedicated image-chip for fast processing and some advanced photo processing.

The result? It’s a darn good camera.

The image taken above comes from the site Techgoondu and although it’s a single, macro shot in amply lit conditions (e.g. most cameras do very well here) it still looks fantastic--low noise, great depth-of-field and bold color rendition.

Likewise with the video sample. It’s sharp as a tack and has some excellent colors, even if you can tell it lacks that smooth OIS found in the Lumia 920.

Once again, if you’re a photo bug, the 920 appears to be the clear winner. But for the occasional photo-taker or for those who are more concerned with music, the HTC Windows Phone 8X seems like it will do just fine. You can view the full sized images here.

Related: HTC 8X Windows Phone cameras, can it compete with the Lumia 920?

Source: Techgoondu; via Windows Phone Daily

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • It is good that 8X is not meant to compete with Lumia 920
  • ^^^^^
  • I agree, but because the 8X is HTC's WP "flagship" (for now), then people will unfortunately still put it against the 920. Maybe we'll see the HTC "Zenith" early 2013?
  • I guess this proves the the 8X's camera is adequate enough for the everyday person who wants to snap off some quick pics,,and that not everyone needs the L920 to take good pictures
  • Yeah exactly! This makes me happy, since I'm on T-mobile and am going to go with the 8X. These pictures and video quality are fantastic!
  • If I were on T-Mobile, I will get the Lumia 820 for super sensitive clear black touch screen, replacable battery, expandable storage, wireless charging and exclusive Nokia apps.  It is a worthy trade off for the 8X, wich only has a slightly higher res screen and better design.
  • The 820 will not have super sensitive touch
  • check Nokia website please.. before you say anything.
  • and replaceable covers too. No one knows yet, how 820's camera will be. 
  • The 8X has much more than a "slightly" higher rez screen. 
  • if its anything like my EVO LTE, which spec wise it seems so, then you are going to LOVE that camera. i destroy all of my friends iphones when we snap the same pics in the same situations :)
  • I'll be impressed when I see what it can do under low light conditions.
  • The first pic looks darn good for a phone. Or maybe it's just me being used to the awful lack of quality of Lumia 800's camera.
  • Not bad at all.
  • go force india!!!!! (n ferrari) are they at the singapore grand prix?
  • Good catch! Singapore is always a great night race.
  • I will probably be picking up an L920, but I am not going to nock HTC's camera until I see better real examples. The L900 was supposed to have such an awesome camera, and its just so so. I like how both the L920 and the 8X look though. Something different than the ussual boring slab.
  • Its amazing how far cell phone cameras have come in terms of image quality. I still remember the photos I took back in the day with my Samsung 315, Motorola Razr and Motorola Q9h and I shudder.
  • your forgetting BT 2.1
  • A good camera on a phone is useless, imo.
  • So you prefer a bad camera on the phone?
  • Easy! LOL!
  • non sense.  you have no idea what a good camera phone can do during a trip.
  • WTH do you even mean by that, dude? The best camera is the one you have on you at the moment.
  • Apparently mjrtoo must carry an actual camera with him/her just in case a picture opportunity arises.
  • True!!
  • The best camera is the one you have at hand when you need to take a picture.
  • Lol no. I'm currently travelling and I carry my HD7 phone AND a regular point-n-shoot camera. I usually take photos of the same things with both... I prefer my phone in many cases as it has a slightly bigger viewing angle, a big preview screen, and works pretty well in low-light. It works especially well in backlight (switch from auto to backlight mode), as the regular camera doesn't handle it as well or wants to use flash which is useless for buildings or things further away. The regular camera is only great for optical zoom. If my camera was SLR that would be a different story, but I don't enjoy being an obvious tourist and big target.
  • with "image stabilization" a feature of Windows Movie Maker 2012 with Windows 8 PCs (feature not available on Windows 7) it will be interesting to see if the added 920 bulk is worth it after processing. The Movie Maker IS is very impressive. For those who want "in camera" perfection Microsoft needs better "lenses" for WP8 with built in crop and levels as that is 50% of the equasion with any camera, dSLRs included.
  • True, but hardware IS always trumps software IS. I mean, one could argue that if you ran the 920's video through Movie Maker it'd be even better than anything it works both ways. There's also this: Will WP8 feature native YouTube direct uploads? Speculation suggests 'yes'. If that's the case, how many people will really offload the video after they get home vs. just direct upload (assuming you're on WiFi or LTE)?
  • Hmmm, I must've missed out on that "speculation" that WP8 will have native YouTube video uploads. Are you hinting at something you already know, Daniel? Hehehe!
  • Good point about direct upload, vs processing it further using Movie Maker in W8!
  • The Nokia nails it except for size/bulk (i have a 900 & DVP sitting on my desk). The hardware IS introduces that bulk. tradoffs. just sayin the avg person probably doesn't care about shake on a 30 second youtube vid. See iPhone sales.  i'm not saying the 920 won't be better for video (it will but so will my 7D/24-105 IS lens) but the 920 tradeoffs (DVP weight/heft and feel) might not be so vital when you have a nice low-light performer in the 8x and can run it thru MM if you really want to.
  • "Windows Essentials 2012 requires the following: 32- or 64-bit version of Windows 7, or 32- or 64-bit version of Windows 8 Release Preview, or Windows Server 2008 R2." Why wouldn't Movie Maker 2012 feature image stabilization on Windows 7?
  • It's true! Not sure why, but MS announced IS only on Win8.
  • MM anti-shake requires hardware-enabled software tech that is coded/embedded into Win8. Search around and you'll get legit answer .
  • If its anything like YouTube video stabilisation, it'll be useless, more like an LSD trip. Prevention is better than treatment, if you have no/little shake in the first place, you dont have the problem, and thus you dont have to worry about fixing it. As said, hardware is better than software, plenty of phones and cameras feature software IS, but optical IS is always the better and preferred choice. No amount if software can fix a lowlight shot that is blurry due to shaking, the detail isn't there in the first place to be possible to fix it.
  • I think it'll come down to off-contract pricing for me. I'm more of an audiogeek than photogeek, but I would love to show off Pureview night shots to my friends on FB.  However, I am also inclined to wait for the 3rd generation of Lumias next year with some iterative improvements.  I suspect the 8x will be cheaper, but to what degree is the question. I also don't mind demonstrating the Beats Audio during a picnic or something.  Design-wise, can't go wrong with either phone; it comes down to functional requirements for the user.
    This is a difficult decision indeed.
  • I don't understand why anyone looking for audio quality would turn to beats pseudo enhancements and marketing bullshit. Beats has very little reputation among audiophiles. Adding a low and high shelf boost, which I guess is everything beats does, isn't exactly what you should to do to your music. Instead listen to your music in lossless quality and get good headphones. It's a shame Microsoft doesn't offer flac support, but as user of the last 4 iPhones that has set his mind on the Lumia 920, I already had to deal with the lack of flac support. Which is why I collected and bought my music in Apple Lossless Format, which works on iTunes, iPhone and, as I understand it, Windows Phone too. Still, I'm interested in the Lumias DAC - didn't find any info on this. The DAC and maximum bit depth/sample rate is far more important than a beats logo on the back. Sure, not for everyone, but if you're interested in audio quality don't be fooled by beats.
  • It's more than just beats this time. It has a dedicated amp for audio.
  • ^^^
  • Hey!!!! It's shot at Singapore!!!! Gosh, i'm just in neighbouring country Malaysia, u guys shudve notify me and i'll just take a train down there and more than willing to be a model for trying out the camera (IF u guys want portraits, LOL) :P
  • screw you HTC for making a phone that makes me question if I want the 920... Ugh. The more I see the 8X and read about it, the more I like it. I'm really crushing on that limellow beauty, and the wife digs the blurple.
  • The 8X design is way better than Lumia 820's weird body. And I'm slowly considering it being on par or even better than 920.
  • I understand if you say that you prefer the design of the 8x to the Lumia 920 ( I think they are on par with each other, with the lumia slightly ahead) however specks wise, the lumia is way ahead of 8x and that is simply not debatable. The lumia has a better screen, better camera, will probably be more durable, has twice as much storage space and much better Nokia apps. The only trying the 8x has going for it is audiobeats (which is overrated) and possibly a lower price
  • I agree with everything but there is a point to be made. 1) At 4.3" the 8X has a monstrous pixel density. I don't recall another phone with such a high pixel density.
  • That pixel density is not going to make any different than something with 5-10% less density than it. Can't believe that poeple are so hung up on pixel density. 
  • 8X also has dedicated photo processor for quick shots... I can tell you that when I or my parents want a shot of my two year old, that will be the difference between a shot that features him and a shot that features where he used to be.
  • "want a shot of my two year old, that will be the difference between a shot that features him and a shot that features where he used to be."
    LOL - i know that feeling HAHAHA
    Good point :)
  • Depends on what "specks"matter most to you. The 8X has a dedicated image processor, a quality amplifier, better pixel density and a better FFC. It will likely be just as durable as the 920 considering both are unibody polycarbonate with GG2. SO, if I don't care about the OIS, wireless charging, and find no need for the Nokia apps, the 8X wins hands down for ME. So yeah, it is debatable. Good thing we have options, huh.
  • I tried the Lumia 800 + 900 once and it just felt so wrong holding. I didn't really feel like using it, and wasn't comfortable to use at all. I'm hoping the HTC 8X will be of this soft material on the back, that just makes you want to hold it 24/7 :D.
  • Nice shot of the front nose section of a Force India F1 car!
  • Good eye!
  • HTC, you managed to make the fact that I will most likely not get a Lumia 920 unless I am ready to fork over $700+ (cost of buying an unlocked phone) less painfull.
  • But video is very shit
  • Stupid!! Did you even see the samples?
  • I'm very happy with all the W8 offerings so far. The colors,the good to great cameras. Now listen to me MS, you must release these apps for WP8 at launch:
    Every banking app available
    All credit card apps with readers
    Words with friends Kthx
  • EXACTLY!!!! All this great hardware is good for us phone geeks, but for the masses to buy into Windows Phone, they need the apps. Its all about the apps. I've considered going back to Android or the iPhone simply because of the apps. I love the integration of WP with my XBox and I love Zune over iTunes any day, but my bank and credit cards have apps on all other platforms but not WP. I know they're working with Chase, and their app needs to be available at WP8 launch, if not before. I know they're working with Zynga for Words With Friends, again, it needs to be available at launch. I know its not Microsoft writing most of these apps, but they need to get with these major players' devs and work with them. Rovio is another one...only having the original Angry Birds or having 3+ versions, which are consumers going to pick? About the hardware though, I'm still leaning towards the Nokia 920. I still haven't found a phone that can beat Nokia's reception.
  • That first e.g. should be an i.e.
    e.g.="For example"
    i.e.="In other words"
    Grammar Nazi, AWAAAAAAAY!!
  • Compared to my Trophy, these pics are like wearing glasses!
  • Ha, no doubt. I've only used the trophies camera a couple times but is sucks pretty hard.
  • Nice camera to be honest & lovely pictures
  • if it's using the same sensor/lens/processing chip combination that's on the one x, then the camera is very capable, i was really happy with the camera on my one x, and while i'm going to get the 920 for OIS, the 8x will produce excellent pictures (it put the lackluster camera on my GS3 to shame)
    unless one really needs removable batteries or uSD storage, the choice is really b/t the 920 and the 8x based on carrier availability and dimension/weight/feature preference.
  • From my experience, and many other reviewers I might add, the GS3 camera smokes the One X camera.
  • Not too bad! While I'm leaning towards the Lumia 920 (If i WAS about to get a new phone, sob, sob), I like the camera output  of the 8x as well. Plus: In my opinion, it's very good for the WP8 image that it gets some really good - and cheerful looking* - devices!
    * I LOVE colours. Always have. Always will.
  • The back of this phone looks like a small childs toy.
  • This is how both the L920 and the 8X stack up for ME and MY opinion.
    Yes a now all OIS and pureview stuff,,,but none of that matters to Me, I prefer the 8X's higher shutter speed.
    Yes the 920 has supersensitive but I live in socal so that's not needed and I think the 60hz frame rate will be imperceptable to to the naked eye. And I prefer the smaller higher res screen of the 8X.
    Sure the 920 has rich recording but it only records in mono and I prefer the dedicated music amp of the 8X.
    Looks-subjective but I prefer the look of the 8X more
  • Great observations! I agree with all of those :)
  • See it is possible to have a preference with out getting all "Fanboy" and just screaming HTC FTW!!! You have to take in account all the specs and choose which ones work for you,,,,I have to admiit when I seen the 920's spec I was amazed. But then I realised that I would almost never use any of that stuff.sure the OIS would be cool to show off to friends but that's all I would use it for. The low light images are absolutely stunning but most of the pictures I take are during the day when I'm hiking and prefer higher shutter speed. On the other hand I listen to music on my phone on a daily basis while go out for walks or just relaxing so that's where the 8X's amp would come in handy.
  • It's a weak argument. 
    If you are using your phone while you go out for walks, the amp will not help. 
    You don't want to listen loud ear-shattering music while on walk or running. 
    Relaxing?: same you don't want to listen loud music when relaxing. 
    The amp can only be useful if you are playing loud music. That's my understanding. 
    No one yet knows, how's 920's music quality. 
  • It's a weak argument. 
    If you are using your phone while you go out for walks, the amp will not help. 
    You don't want to listen loud ear-shattering music while on walk or running. 
    Relaxing?: same you don't want to listen loud music when relaxing. 
    The amp can only be useful if you are playing loud music. That's my understanding. 
    No one yet knows, how's 920's music quality. 
  • 1st of all those are MY preferences so saying it wil not help ME is invalid.
    MY needs are different than yours and yes the amp will help because its not only to make the music louder its also to improve sound quality while music is at low to medium levels. So you need to rethink your understanding of MY neeeds. And see how I did that? Replied to your assinine comments with out being a total A-hole ;)
  • let me tell you something,
    Camera - yes maybe the shutter speed will win with 8x, but i dont think it will make a difference
    Smaller screen - why? the frame between 8x n 920 is almost the same, to the point that 8x wasted so much screen space
    music amp -  good luck on that one, it wont make any difference i tell you unless your the kind of guy who like music with all bass and boom( good luck with hearing loss). please do remember that this thing carries another chip/amp that eats power on your device with the smaller battery, not to mention the camera chip.
    looks - its your choice, and subjective. but let me remind you these are brightly colored phone and its matte, so expect long term effect on dirt and stains, thats why nokia opted glossy not to mention scratch resistant.
    ergo: this all boils to looks, carrier, and price. in the end windows phone wins regardless of oems...screw andriod with thier project margarine! and apples inovative phone.
  • If only it had 32gb or a microsd...sigh..
  • No kick-stand? Deal-breaker ;)
  • Get a case
  • Neither one have a kick-stand so I guess you won't be getting either one ;-) lol
  • 8x best of both worlds.
  • Very impressive video quality @ 1080p
  • So the video is shaking pretty bad, eh?
  • Guys is it just me or is anyone else getting excited by the 8X because having just watched the HD presentation on Youtube, im kind of swaying towards the 8X, because of its build quality, excellent camera in its own right, the fact that the components underneath are custom made to generate the original design and lets not forget that it has the highest screen resolution of the 5 new WP8 phones. I really like the nokia, its probably the best all round phone but with the 8X and the 8S you get a feeling of its not just a phone made in a manufacturing factory, but a phone that has a heart, the fact that it has been custom made makes me feel I would have an edge over all my friends other phones and its on a par probably even better looking than the 920.
    One things for sure is that I will definately will not order anything without holding it in my hand first. Decisions decisions decisions.....
  • When WP7 first came out, each company presented something unique, keyboard, sliding speaker, etc., same here
  • I'm just gonna leave this here and walk away!
  • hahaha class!!
  • I hate to say it but I think the pics were faked. Why? You ask. Because when they showed the low light through the hole in the brick wall the nokia used its flash to focus in on the subject. In this demonstration there was no focusing light. Also after he takes the picture with the nokia you see him swipe the picture on/off the screen its possible he was selecting a picture taken with better light conditions. Of course this is just speculation and I could be totally wrong.
    Your thoughts?
  • He said blurple hahahagagagagagagahaha skip to November already
  • I think the 8X is 4.0 capable just hasn't been certified yet,,,L920 didn't receive certification till after it was already anounced.
  • Guys... I'm torn apart on this one :/ I REALLY don't know what to choose! I loveee the 8X's build, it looks really nice, and the HTC clock tile is perfection to my eyes as well. Faster shutter speed is ideal too for those random situations for me (i.e. I see an oddly colored pigeon, or SOMETHING random that is moving slowly perhaps). Pixel density seems nice but I don't really care since I have an LG Optimus 7, not so high over here and I still love it. The key feature here is that I'm an audio-who** I guess you can say haha. I love music and need it EVERYDAY. It's a must. The thing is speakers is greater on 8X I know, but with earphones, anyone think there will be any major difference? I want an opinion on this. Other than that, I REALLY love pureview camera and nokia's support and apps, but I think a decent camera that can help me take everyday shots (and I don't really care about dark shots since I don't do them often), and with amazing music quality w/ headphones, I'd be sold to the 8X. If no difference through headphones, then 920 for me lool.
  • Oh and one more important detail. 16 gb on my LG optimus 7 still isn't full so... who cares about 32 gb lool. Also, wireless charging... Not sold cuz not ideal for when I go to school. I won't buy their products going to school with the speakers and all. No. lol
  • I believe the 8X has a dedicated amp for the line out, in other words yes there may be a difference. 
  • Thx for the clarification! Still gonna check them out before purchasing obviously but ye, I'm pretty set on this phone. It looks to be an impressive phone
  • My best advice would be to bring your headphones with you that you use most often with you to the store and try them out with the 8X. That's what I'm gonna do. Second,,decide which is more important to you and which one you'll use most often,,camera or audio.
  • Thnx! Definitely the audio for me! I'll be doing that for sure
  • Ive just decided I'll be having the............920!! And the only real reason I'm doing that is because when the 8X is face up, it reminds me too much of my omnia 7 in terms of its shape. I know that may sound rather stupid but that was the only issue I had with the 8X because I would love to have the Red one. Never mind!!!!