HTC Touch Diamond Review: Geek's Best Friend: File Management, Image Gallery, Music Player, Video Player

By 07:23 Sun, 08 Aug 2021 Comments


Multimedia management and performance

The HTC Touch Diamond offers generous amount of storage - the 4GB available may probably create up for the lack of a memory card slot for some.



The WinMo file manager on the Diamond

Unfortunately, the lack of a card slot might be an issue for those who have purchased software that ships on a memory card and that can be run only from that memory card - most GPS navigation applications are a fine example.

We tested the read/write performance of the Touch Diamond both against software benchmarks and in real life tasks. Both tests gave similar results so we are publishing only the real-life one.

We concluded our real-life test on a Windows XP-based Personal Computer (PC) paired with the Diamond in Universal Serial Bus (USB) Mass Storage mode. Overall, it showed really nice results in the Read operation (copying from handset to PC). However the Write operation was three times slower. Here are the results:

HTC Touch Diamond copy/paste performance:

  • Personal Computer (PC) to handset -> 2 MB/s

  • Handset to Personal Computer (PC) -> 5.9 MB/s

Bear in mind that those figures will be lower on a Vista-based Personal Computer (PC) for some Microsoft-only-knows-why reason. That's another tale entirely and we'd rather stay out of it.

That's an excellent image gallery

The Touch Diamond offers a nice thumbnail browser straight from the Photos and Videos tab on the Home screen. There's another thumbnail browser in the Album app available from the context menu on the Home classy screen or the Programs menu.



Browsing images as thumbnails in the Albums application

Once the image is opened, you can create utilize of the auto classy screen rotation feature to view it in landscape mode or you can zoom in with a circular gesture on the display (it's TouchFLO, baby) or on the scroll wheel. Once you zoom in on the image you can start panning by holding your thumb down for a second, or you can utilize the D-pad. The Albums application also offers a customizable slideshow.






Opening an image • context menu • zooming in and thumb panning • slideshow options

Scrolling to the next image is a matter of a single finger sweep and it's almost instantaneous. The image viewer actually has the same functionality as in the HTC Touch Cruise.

Thanks to the built-in accelerometer, switching to landscape mode is seamless.




Opening an image in landscape mode • zooming in

It's got to be assumed that the Touch Diamond has a certain advantage over competing devices when it comes to image browsing since this is one of the applications where Video Graphics Array (VGA) does count gigantic time. The images see remarkable on the high resolution screen.

And there's an iPod-style music player

The Touch Diamond has a fine music player, which makes heavy utilize of album art. The music player is accessible straight from the TouchFLO home classy screen with cool Apple-like cover flow animation for you to pick an album.



The attractive music player runs directly from the home screen

In case you want to filter tracks by other criteria beside album, the Library shortslit will hold you to the player backdiscontinue where you can sort music by artist, genre, composer, purchased tracks or simply create custom playlists. The visual interface of the library is fluid and stunningly reminiscent of iPhone's very own music player.






The music library: Now Playing tab • artists tab • albums tab • genres tab

Equalizer presets are available only when you have the headset plugged in. They are not part of the music player itself but of a separate application called Audio Booster. That setup allows you to create utilize of the presets when you watch videos or even when you listen to music on an alternative player.




The Audio Booster app is a system wide setting

Unfortunately, there is no 3.5mm audio jack on the Diamond or on its headphones, so unless you acquire hrecent of a third-party adapter, you're stuck with the supplied headset, which - simply put - sucks. The headset does see good, but listening to music is not among its strengths - it's best left for making phone calls.

Audio quality

Windows Mobile devices have never been known for even decent audio output. Their business mindset has so far served as a fine excutilize for the poor audio. However, since the Diamond is now considered a multimedia device as well, it is about time this changed.

Well, in reality it's arguably up to the task in terms of audio quality. The HTC has some nice IMD and THD levels but somewhat fails in terms of frequency response.

It seems as though HTC have put some sort of high-pass filter in the Touch Diamond, hence the frequency response graph you can see posted below.

However you can see for yourselves that the Diamond is nevertheless a real step up in audio quality from previous Windows mobile devices we have tested. Anyway, they are still behind the best music phone standards.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk

HTC Touch Diamond+0.42, -2.46-84.087.00.0230.338

-85.6

Samsung i900 Omnia+0.34, -1.14-94.195.00.3480.683

-96.5

Asus P750+0.55, -3.34-86.386.20.00810.926

-76.2

LG KS20+0.80, -3.60-85.688.70.0631.310

-86.7

Nokia N81+0.39, -1.13-86.685.80.0410.040-69.9

Samsung U600+0.41, -1.12-89.286.50.00400.019-86.9

Apple iPod+0.41, -1.16-91.691.80.0043

0.015-83.6




HTC Touch Diamond and Apple iPod frequency response graphs

You can learn more about the whole testing process here.

There's an Frequency Modulation (FM) radio, too

The Diamond built-in Frequency Modulation (FM) radio naturally requires the headset to be plugged-in. As we already trecent you however, you would be better off using a third-party headset with some sort of 3.5mm audio adapter, as the original set is not well suited for listening to music.

Nevertheless, the Touch Diamond Frequency Modulation (FM) radio has an excellent interface much like the rest of the multimedia players on board and offers memory for some 20 radio stations.




The Frequency Modulation (FM) Radio on the Touch Diamond

RDS is available too - so overall, it's a nice implementation.

Portable video player

The HTC Touch Diamond has a nice video player but it only supports the video/audio codecs available to Windows. To like a more versatile video support on the Diamond (DiVX or XViD for example), you will probably need to purchase a dedicated video player, which has support for more file types than the stock variety.




Playing video on the Diamond

We resorted to the well-known Core player, since the free TCPMP player didn't run on the handset, probably due to some compatibility problems with Windows Mobile 6.1.

The HTC Diamond is pretty fine at near VGA-res XviD video playback - we played an XviD encoded Digital Video/Versatile Disk (DVD) rip for Personal Computer (PC) playback and, luckily, there were no skipped frames. Credit probably goes to the dedicated graphics chip. We are glad that HTC have finally sorted the video performance problems that plagued the Touch Cruise and the TyTN II.

The Diamond Video Graphics Array (VGA) display did count here: the video looked excellent, well ahead of other devices. We guess the Diamond is a sealed deal for movie aficionados if display size doesn't bother them.


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