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Motorola Motoluxe review

Poor hardware meets dull design in this middling Android 2.3 smartphone

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At 8MP, the Motorola Motoluxe looks at first like it could be beginning to live up to its name... but alas, the promise is unfulfilled. There's little that is luxe about this camera experience.

There are the usual scene modes to choose from (Portrait, Landscape, Night, Sunset, Action) and a few terrible 'Colour effects' to add, if you enjoy blue photos, but that's really the end of the line.

Annoyingly, the functions menu is unmoved by any accelerometer action, so if you're taking a picture in portrait orientation, you'll have to read the menu choices upside-down. Not only that, but seemingly as soon as you tap it, the thing collapses again, so decide fast what menu choice you want to make.

Motorola Motoluxe review

There's a second function menu, found by clicking the 'Settings' touchscreen button. From here you can delve further into the menus to find true advanced settings (white balance, brightness, contrast and so on) but no matter what variations in picture size/quality/settings we tried, these advanced settings stayed continually greyed out and out of our grasp.

There's a 4x zoom plus LED flash, but one pixelates dreadfully and the other completely washes out any photo where a flash is deemed necessary.

The autofocus is a bit of a dud: when you tap the screen, the menu pops up. Wait for that to go and then click the shutter, however, and the focus will be squarely in the middle of the screen, often not where you tapped. Keep tapping the screen and the menu will just stay there, covering the capture button.

That said, it's quite good at focusing on something very close to the viewfinder, thus creating a slight depth of field blur in the background,

Motorola Motoluxe review
Sunlight causes over exposure, washes out colour and the background lacks saturation.

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Motorola Motoluxe review
This swan is almost impossible to make out - this was taken with the stabilising mode too

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Motorola Motoluxe review
The autofocus didn't create a massively impressive depth-of-field effect, but the picture is sharp.

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Motorola Motoluxe review
With the flash off the image is very dark, despite two sources of light on the table.

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Motorola Motoluxe review
With the flash on, the image is over exposed, creating an ugly image.

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