HTC One M8 Camera Review
High Dynamic Range (HDR) modes capture two or more images at different exposures and then blend the individual frames. This helps to reduce highlight and shadow clipping in high-contrast scenes. HDR capture is pretty much a standard feature on smartphones these days but implementation and results vary greatly. On the One M8 you select HDR mode in the menu and snap away, there are no further parameters or settings to play with.
Looking at the results below the HTC One M8's HDR mode is less balanced than competing solutions. In high contrast scenes smartphones often have trouble with highlight clipping and the M8 is no exception. Yet the phone's HDR mode focuses on the shadows and leaves the highlights virtually untouched.
In the two samples above you can see how the shadows have been lifted heavily while the highlights are still clipped. In the second sample the blue sky has turned cyan, too. Overall the M8's HDR results look unnatural and don't do anything to recover highlight detail. This is in stark contrast to systems like HDR mode in the Apple iPhone 5s, which leave midtones looking natural but give you some detail back in bright areas. Overall the M8's HDR feature could really do with a review of exposure and image blending parameters.
The HTC One M8 shoots panoramas in portrait or landscape orientation. Panorama mode is selected in the settings and once activated you simply capture a pano by panning the camera. As you do so you can see the individual images being auto-aligned. The process is easy and quick but we have seen better results on competitors, specifically the iPhone 5s and Samsung Galaxy S4. With a width of approximately 6500 pixels the images aren't particularly large and when you zoom in to 100% view you'll notice quite a few small stitching errors.
Like most phones the One M8 locks the exposure with the first frame which explains the slightly dark exposure of the first sample below. In the second sample you can also see a pretty ugly color shift towards the highlights. The blue sky turns cyan before it totally clips to white.
Like most other recent high-end Android phones the One M8 can capture images with front and rear cameras at the same time and create a picture-picture effect. To do so you have to select Dual Capture in camera app. The HTC version of this mode has a nice touch in so far that you can adjust both size and position of the small image inside the larger frame.
Google started the trend to 360 degree panorama images on Android devices with Photo Sphere and by now most manufacturers pre-install a proprietary solution or one that is based on Google's technology on their high-end devices. HTC's version is called 360 Pan and can be accessed via the camera selection screen. Most 360 panorama apps work in a very similar way. You are guided by an on-screen target as you capture frame by frame to complete the sphere around you.
In terms of usability the HTC solution is one of the best solutions we have seen. The targets are bright red and easily visible in bright light which cannot be said for most other sphere apps we have tested. In the top right corner of the screen you also have a progress indicator which makes it it easy to spot if any patches have been forgotten.
Unfortunately the image results do not quite match the good ergonomics of the app. The sample below was shot on a market square with most of the buildings and objects at a good distance from the camera. We would always accept some stitching errors on objects that are close to the lens, like my bicycle that I had dropped just in front of me, but on buildings in the distance the stitching should be better.
If you zoom into the into this image you can see a lot of small stitching errors and ghosting all over the buildings in the distance. When viewed on Google+ you still get a good impression of the space though and Pan 360 seems to deal well with moving subjects in the scene.
The image size you get out of the HTC One M8's front camera is almost the same as the rear shooter. That's more than the front cameras on many other smartphones but overall the image quality is still limited. If you look at the full image size you'll see a lot of noise reduction and smearing of fine detail but it's good enough for a quick snap in good light.
In Selfie mode the self-timer is set to 2 seconds by default but you can turn it off or switch to 5 or 10 seconds as well. Otherwise the menu options are limited but you still get HDR and Portrait mode and have access to White Balance, Filters and exposure compensation.
The HTC One M8 also offers a shooting mode that allows for manual setting of white balance, ISO, shutter speed and focus. If you leave ISO and shutter speed on Auto you can alternatively use exposure compensation. All parameters can be modified on easy to use sliders and while you might not want to use manual mode on an everyday basis it is definitely useful in certain situations.
Like most smartphones the One M8 attempts to keep the ISO down in low light by using very slow shutter speed. This leads inevitably to blur on moving subjects. Manual mode allows you to select the shutter speed you need to freeze motion. With ISO set to Auto the app will then select the sensitivity that's needed to achieve that speed.
Gallery app and editing
Apart from the Duo Cam features that are described on the previous page the HTC gallery has not changed much from the One to the One M8. images are sorted by Album, Location or timeline. For each of those a larger cover thumbnail is displayed that turns into a "Highlight Movie" a couple of seconds or so after it appears on the screen. Highlight Movies are videos that mix up still images and videos in a folder and throw in some effect filters for good measure. We had a closer look at them in our HTC One review.
Once have selected one of the albums you can tap on thumbnails to show the image at full screen and use the pinch gesture to zoom in and out. Another tap then opens up a fairly comprehensive range of editing options. Video editing options are limited to trimming of your clips.
|Vulcan Duxford-4804 by Mike Engles|
|Wryneck with ants by cangopluto|
from Old Tech: Lens Mounted Via A Custom Adapter
|Mystic mist by Massao|
from Best Photo of the Week...
|Rainbow and Truck by dalgo|
Luna Display comes in the shape of a hardware dongle and a Mac app and is compatible with older macOS versions.
The CS2740 monitor is a successor to Eizo's ColorEdge CS2730 that increases the resolution, adds new connectivity options and now offers 10-bit input. Pricing information isn't yet available, but Eizo says it will officially launch on October 24.
ON1 software has today released the latest version of its Raw processing and image editing and organization application Photo RAW.
The Natural History Museum has announced the winners of its 55th annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition.
According to a report from Bloomberg, beta testers of Adobe's Photoshop CC for iPad have noticed a number of major features missing or incomplete.
The lens is currently available to pre-order for $449 and is set for retail availability on November 8, 2019.
Datacolor is offering the 64-bit update as a free software update to ensure the Spyder5 calibration sensor works with Apple's latest desktop operating system macOS Catalina.
Instagram is rolling out a number of new privacy-centric features that will make it easier to see and edit what third-party applications have access to your Instagram data.
We've got our hands on the Olympus E-M5 III and it is is, on the outside, a refinement of its predecessor. But we'll go a bit deeper and talk about what's also changed on the inside in our hands-on slideshow.
We spent 48 hours exploring the deserts of southern Utah with the E-M5 III, Olympus smallest, lightest 20MP camera. Click through to read about our experience shooting with the camera and to see what kind of photos it's capable of taking.
We recently joined Olympus in Moab, Utah for some preliminary shooting with the OM-D E-M5 III. See how the photos look in our extensive sample gallery.
Olympus has announced the OM-D E-M5 Mark III - a more compact camera than its predecessor, which incorporates a lot of technology found previously in the higher-end E-M1 Mark II.
The PEN E-PL10 remains largely unchanged from its predecessor aside from the redesigned display and a few software additions.
DPReview Science Editor Rishi Sanyal had an opportunity to sit down with Marc Levoy and Isaac Reynolds of Google to dive deep into the most important camera updates on the new Pixel 4.
Chinese company Zhiyun, the world's leading gimbal manufacturer, announced the WEEBILL-S earlier this week.
United Kingdom photo retailer Jessops is reportedly looking for administrators to help sort out rising costs and falling revenue.
Google has confirmed it's ending its free 'original quality' image backups with its Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL smartphones. This marks the first time the popular perk isn't offered since the launch of the original Pixel smartphone.
In a story shared on 35mmc, photographer Steve Boykin tells how he stumbled upon a Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R lens he had lost four months prior during a trek in the wilderness and discovered it still works fine.
Sandmarc's new filter series combines the characteristics of polarizing and neutral density (ND) filters into one single filter.
Our testing of the Canon G7 X III continues, which means we've brought along on plenty of day trips and adventures to get a feel for its performance in a number of situations. Take a look at some of the resulting images.
Shimoda Designs has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its new 'ultra-aggressive' lineup of camera bags that includes three backpacks, two rollers and a handful of new and improved accessories.
Meike has added yet another mount option to its 85mm F2.8 manual macro lens, which was previously available for Canon RF, Canon EF, Sony E/FE and Nikon F mounts.
Camrote version 1.2.0 adds new zoom and time-lapse capabilities to select Sony camera systems.
Google has officially unveiled the Pixel 4, with the addition of a telephoto camera headlining the camera updates. Other improvements include real-time HDR preview in live view, added brightness and exposure controls, and an updated portrait mode with better depth mapping.
With Luminar 4, Skylum Software aims to provide sophisticated editing tools in an easy to use package.
The a7R IV is Sony's latest high-resolution interchangeable lens camera, but that doesn't mean it's just for landscape photographers. Get all the details about this 60.2MP full-framer in our full review.
Google's Night Sight has justifiably been considered the low light king, but with the iPhone 11 Apple is challenging for this title with its own Night Mode. Take a look at how they compare side-by-side.
Be vigilant on what's being reflected in eyes (or glasses) before posting photographs of yourself or others online. High resolution photographs aren't always beneficial.
The Flujo Signature Pro has passed its funding goal on Kickstarter and the first units are expected to ship in November 2019.