BlackBerry Torch 9800 review: Living the Olympic creed

GSMArena team, 24 September 2010.
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Music player slightly refreshed

The Torch 9800 music player comes with a slightly polished interface, but basically identical functionality to its predecessors. Donít expect to be totally wowed but it does a good job.

The music player sorts the music library automatically by artist, album and genre and you can search your tracks by gradual typing. You can also create your own playlists in no time.

BlackBerry Torch 9800 BlackBerry Torch 9800 BlackBerry Torch 9800
The music player got a visual update as well

Album art is also supported and there is a single track repeat option. Quite naturally, the player can also be minimized to play in the background. You can then go back to it via the task manager or the main menu. Strangely enough, there's no indication of the currently playing song on the home screen.

BlackBerry Torch 9800
The now playing interface

There are other options such as equalizers and audio boost though so we donít think one has many reasons to frown at the Torch music player.

Excellent audio quality

The BlackBerry Torch 9800 did very well in our traditional audio output quality test. When attached to an active external amplifier (i.e. your car stereo or your home audio system) the device is next to perfect with the cut-off extreme bass frequencies the only thing to frown at.

When headphones come into play, the BB Torch remained a pretty solid performer and the only things that suffered were the increased stereo crosstalk and intermodulation distortions. Plus the Torch is decently loud so we are happy to give it an excellent mark here.

Check out the table and see for yourself.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk
BlackBerry Torch 9800+0.20, -3.87-89.087.50.00890.019-89.2
BlackBerry Torch 9800 (headphones attached)+0.27, -3.49-85.783.30.00880.248-40.4
BlackBerry Storm2 9520+0.09, -0.39-85.087.50.0270.049 -81.3
BlackBerry Storm 9500+0.09, -0.39-87.689.50.0250.048 -85.8
HTC Aria+0.12, -0.58-84.586.90.0220.172-85.4
HTC Aria (headphones attached)+0.37, -0.15-87.090.40.0260.400-52.3
Apple iPhone 4+0.01, -0.07-90.590.60.00410.011-92.0
Samsung I9000 Galaxy S+0.03 -0.04-90.790.60.014 0.019-90.6
Apple iPhone 4 (headphones attached)+0.01, -0.07-90.490.40.00360.092-68.4
Samsung I9000 Galaxy S (headphones attached)+0.40 -0.12-90.790.60.018 0.329-43.3

BlackBerry Torch 9800 frequency response
BlackBerry Torch 9800 frequency response

A good video player

Watching videos on the Torch 9800 is hardly a thing to write home about. The experience is just about average in every single aspect.

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The video player does a decent job

The interface is simple and functional. Converting videos all the time is not really our cup of tea so we appreaciate the fact that the Torch supports DivX and XviD. Mind you the handset played correctly only about two thirds of the videos we threw at it so unpleasant surprises are to be expected from time to time.

On the other hand the resolution and contrast of the screen donít allow the videos to show their true potential and the video browsing interface, while not terrible, is not much of a looker.

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