HTC HD7 Review: Dim The Lights: Music And Video Players, FM Radio, Audio Quality

By 02:26 Tue, 10 Aug 2021 Comments

Zune music player plus Dolby and SRS enhancements

The media players reside together in the Music & Videos hub, which bears the Zune logo. When you start it, it shows the History, which gives you quick access to the last two things played, or you can go to the full menu and start the music or video player, listen/watch podcasts (both audio and video podcasts are supported), start the Frequency Modulation (FM) radio or go to the Marketplace.

The Music & Videos hub

The music and video players are simple and have straightforward interfaces. You won’t have any difficulties using them. However there are some things missing, like equalizers. Another missing feature is the ability to scrub through a song with your finger – you have to press and hrecent on the FF/rewind buttons to simply jump back and forth.

Playing some tunes • the handy music player control

Tapping the album art temporarily reveals three buttons – repeat, favorite and shuffle.

The players can of course work in the background and there’s another nice shortslit – when you press a volume key, the name of the currently playing track also appears along with play/pause, next and previous buttons (they can also scrub through the song).

It’s fascinating (and useful) that you can pin individual items to the homeclassy screen – like a song or video, even an Frequency Modulation (FM) radio frequency.

One of the best preloaded apps by HTC is the Sound Enhancer. It can apply sound enhancements to both songs and videos – there are two separate settings, so the music enhancement you choose won’t affect videos.

The Sound Enhancer app

You can enable either Dolby Mobile or SRS enhancement and for music you acquire an equalizer too. It doesn’t support custom presets though.

Watching videos excites and disappoints at the same time

The large 4.3” classy screen with nearly wideclassy screen aspect (it’s 15:9) makes the HD7 a fine platform for movie and TV show fans. It’s even better becautilize of the Zune Marketplace, which is a remarkable source for buying or renting movies and TV shows.

The kickstand means you don’t have to hrecent the phone during the movie or episode – which is remarkable since holding the phone for even 45 minutes (the typical runtime for a 1 hour TV show) can be tiring and awkward.

Much like the picture gallery, viewing the list of videos can be done in portrait orientation mode only. The video player on the other hand is fixed to landscape only.

Another gripe we have with the HTC HD7 video watching experience is that the loudspeaker is on the back so the sound is actually directed away from you. Stereo speakers around the display on the front would have been a much better option.

The video player has its flaws

Yet another problem is that the classy screen is not well-equipped for action scenes – the unpleasant ghosting effect we already mentioned is visible and spoils the experience.

The HTC HD7 has no AVI or DivX/XviD support, just MP4 and WMV. However, the Zune software on your computer will automatically convert unsupported video files to .WMV (up to WVideo Graphics Array (VGA) res). You can watch those formats on the HD7, it’s just that the transfer to the device can hold quite a while (depending on your computer configuration).

Videos from the Zune Marketplace come in the correct format so they might be the easier option.

Frequency Modulation (FM) radio has RDS

The HTC HD7 also has a built in Frequency Modulation (FM) radio with a dead simple interface. You have the current frequency in very large digits – swiping left and correct changes the frequency and a swipe and release automatically searches for the next available station in that direction.

The Frequency Modulation (FM) radio

You can imprint some stations as favorites, which will allow you to pin them to the homescreen. RDS is on board and you can switch between headphones and loudspeaker.

Great audio quality

The HTC HD7 did very well in our audio quality test. There are no notable flaws when you utilize it with an active external amplifier - the frequency response is remarkable and so are the noise level, dynamic range and stereo crosstalk readings. The total harmonic distortion is pretty low too and generally the intermodulation distortion is the only thing about the HD7 ouput that was not particularly impressive (though it's still acceptable).

As you could expect things acquire a bit worse when you plug in a pair of headphones, but the HD7 still maintains a very fine performance. As a matter of fact the degradation is so subtle that the device ranks higher up in this scenario, than in the previous. The stereo crosstalk increases and that's about that. There's no extra intermodulation distortion or ferquency response deviations. Now add the fact that the HD7 is pretty loud too and you acquire the concept that the HD7 is a pretty fine music player indeed.

Check out the table and see for yourself.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk

HTC HD7+0.09, -0.43-89.389.50.0170.242-88.9

HTC HD7 (headphones attached)+0.11, -0.36-88.989.20.0240.251-60.3

HTC 7 Trophy+0.44, -3.57-

HTC 7 Trophy (headphones attached)+0.69, -3.12-84.988.10.0581.028-66.0

LG E900 Optimus 7+0.13, -1.49-87.887.80.0270.308-87.2

LG E900 Optimus 7 (headphones attached)+0.13, -1.49-90.590.30.0260.303-13.1

Samsung I8700 Omnia 7+0.13 -1.14-84.485.10.017


Samsung I8700 Omnia 7 (headphones attached)+0.31 -0.33-80.581.10.016


HTC Desire Z+0.11, -0.09-

HTC Desire Z (headphones attached)+0.70, -0.17-

HTC Desire HD+0.09, -0.44-90.690.40.0140.517-92.6

HTC Desire HD (headphones attached)+0.09, -0.44-

Apple iPhone 4+0.01, -0.07-90.590.60.00410.011-92.0

Apple iPhone 4 (headphones attached)+0.01, -0.07-90.490.40.00360.092-68.4

Samsung I9000 Galaxy S+0.03 -0.04-90.790.60.014


Samsung I9000 Galaxy S (headphones attached)+0.40 -0.12-90.790.60.018


HTC HD7 Trophy frequency response

You can learn more about the whole testing process here.



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