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LG G2 Review

LG G2 9.4
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LG G2 Review

Introduction


Life hasn't been so good for LG recently, at least when it comes to the smartphone market. In the last couple of years, the company has rolled out a number of high-end, flagship phones that haven't really managed to make a dent. Do you remember the Optimus 4X HD? The Optimus G? The G Pro? OK, the manufacturer scored a sweet deal with Google for the Nexus 4, though everyone knows that the Nexus 4 is anything else but a money-maker.

So, where to now? With a competitor that is becoming increasingly unbeatable, LG needs a hero device. It needs an absolute winner in order to at least get noticed by customers drowned in a sea of Galaxies. Interestingly, while HTC has decided to differentiate from Samsung by doing the exact opposite of what the South Koreans are doing, LG has employed a completely different tactic to battle the behemoth. It's mimicking the moves of its neighbor, trying to beat it in its own game.

And this is where the LG G2 comes in. The newest flagship of the company will try to outgrow, outpace and outsmart its rival, the Galaxy S4, by packing an even larger screen, an even faster processor and even more software features that would attempt (or pretend) to make your life easier.

LG G2 Review

In the box:


  • USB cable
  • Wall charger
  • QuadBeat 2 earphones

Design


LG G2 Review
LG G2 Review
LG G2 Review
LG G2 Review
It's impossible to not notice the similarities between the G2 and the GS4 with regards to physique. After all, if Samsung can be successful with an uninspired, plastic design, why should LG try to shake things up there? Or at least, that seems to have been the thinking behind the G2's exterior. It's big, slightly bigger than an S4 (5.45 x 2.79 x 0.35 inches for the G2 versus 5.38 x 2.75 x 0.31 inches for the GS4), without any fancy appearance characteristics to make it stand out in any positive way. The plastic construction is nothing to write home about, but the occasional creaking sounds made by the back sure are irritating.

The G2's dimensions are still bearable. LG has done a terrific job thinning those bezels, while the nicely-curved back panel makes the handset sit comfortably in the palm of the hand. Even though the G2 is slightly bigger than the S4, we wouldn't say that LG's product is more uncomfortable to hold. In terms of weight, the G2's 5.04 oz doesn't make such a notable difference, compared to the Galaxy S4's 4.59 oz.

The most peculiar thing about the LG G2's design are the rear keys. Instead of positioning the power/lock and volume buttons on the sides of the handset, LG has placed those right on its back. This has been done for a couple of reasons. One, the side bezels have gotten so thin that the can no longer house any keys; and two, LG argues that placing the keys on the back would allow for a more intuitive access to those controls, as a user's index finger almost always defaults to that position upon picking up the phone. While we did not find the new positioning to be significantly worse than the good-old one, we can't say that it benefited our experience with the phone in any way. As a matter of fact, we feel that finding the desired rear key by touch alone is harder than finding it if it was placed somewhere around the sides of the device. Of course, this might simply be a matter of getting used to, which is why we'll continue using the handset during the days ahead and will update this review appropriately.

However, one thing we definitely didn't like about the rear volume keys is how cheap they feel – almost toy-like. Having in mind this is supposed to be a top-shelf product, LG should have tried a bit harder in this respect. Another design feature that we dislike is that the earpiece is concave, which causes a lot of dirt to permanently establish itself there. On a positive note, the manufacturer has wisely put the loudspeaker on the bottom, so that it doesn't get muffled when the device is laid on a table.



LG G2
5.45 x 2.79 x 0.35 inches
138.5 x 70.9 x 8.9 mm
5.04 oz (143 g)

LG G2

Samsung Galaxy S4
5.38 x 2.75 x 0.31 inches
136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm
4.59 oz (130 g)

Samsung Galaxy S4

HTC One
5.41 x 2.69 x 0.37 inches
137.4 x 68.2 x 9.3 mm
5.04 oz (143 g)

HTC One

Sony Xperia Z
5.47 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches
139 x 71 x 7.9 mm
5.15 oz (146 g)

Sony Xperia Z


To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page.


Display


Narrowing those bezels down has allowed LG to fit a spectacularly big screen in the still-bearable dimensions of the G2, and that's not an overstatement. We're talking of a 5.2” display here, which is 0.2” larger than what's found on the Galaxy S4, and boy is it a joy to be staring at this thing! With a resolution of 1080x1920 pixels (423 ppi) and a standard RGB matrix, this advanced IPS LCD display is extremely clean and sharp. When it comes to color balance, we can by not means say that it's bad, but it's colors are definitely towards the colder side. Don't get us wrong – it's still a great display and most users will probably not notice that the color temperature if a bit off, but when compared to the iPhone 5's display, it immediately gets noticeable that there's still some room for improvement.

The LG G2's display is very bright, and it's certainly very readable in bright daylight. It's probably not the very best out there, but it's definitely among the best in that respect. As it's now the norm, the viewing angles of this IPS LCD screen are very good, although still not perfect, as there's some noticeable brightness loss, but that's normal.

Finally, this screen's biggest advantage remains its sheer size, so if you happen to be among the users who just can have enough screen, the G2 should definitely be considered – it really makes gameplay and multimedia consumption that much more enjoyable.

Display measurements and quality

Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better Contrast Higher is better Color temperature (Kelvins) Gamma Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better Delta E grayscale Lower is better
LG G2 438
(Good)
8
(Good)
1:1338
(Excellent)
8109
(Poor)
2.25
4.27
(Average)
6.22
(Average)
Samsung Galaxy S4 289
(Poor)
9
(Average)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
7316
(Good)
2.16
5.52
(Average)
7.31
(Average)
HTC One 460
(Good)
14
(Poor)
1:1758
(Excellent)
8008
(Poor)
2.21
5.89
(Average)
5.33
(Average)
Sony Xperia Z 440
(Good)
21
(Poor)
1:799
(Average)
8250
(Poor)
1.93
4.94
(Average)
6.23
(Average)
View all


159 Comments
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posted on 31 Aug 2013, 10:52 2

1. dickwyn (Posts: 621; Member since: 07 May 2012)


patiently waiting for the comparisons

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:31 8

11. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Agree. That is where the real information awaits. Interesting on its own, but compared to say, the Sony? Even the HTC One isn't that far behind for a ~6 month older phone.

Props to LG, though for stepping up their game.

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:35 10

16. Commentator (Posts: 3709; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


Instead of to Moto, who stepped it back...

(Yeah yeah yeah, experience over performance, okay...)

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 12:07 1

29. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Moto's Droid offerings underwhelm with their 720p display and mushy camera function. Moto hasn't had a compelling camera offering after the Droid X. I was hoping Moto would have stepped up their game with the camera, but as you posted, more like stepping back. If the camera had been competitive, I would have even given Moto a pass on the 720p display.

posted on 12 Sep 2013, 18:36

145. xmusicianguy (Posts: 96; Member since: 13 Jul 2011)


This is why I have a Galaxy S4 over the Droid Ultra/Maxx. Motorola has had YEARS to step up thair game. However they never do. They are always a year behind! It's nice to have a phone that can ALMOST compete with this phone (LG G2). No Motorola phone out right now can come close. Even I can tell the G2 beats the GS4 camera hands down. But looking at where I came from with a Maxx HD. Yeah. I'm happy.

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 22:14 1

91. AnTuTu (Posts: 1580; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)


Hi Ray, you missed some points in the video:

1. Does it have NFC?
2. Has it got a removable back?
3. Can you expand storage via SD?
4. Some real usage of rear volume rocker keys?

Cheers

posted on 01 Sep 2013, 00:08 1

95. special4u (Posts: 63; Member since: 22 May 2013)


ya, samsung s4 is just so old

who need removable battery when u have greater capacity power bank and no need to turn off ur phone when swap the battery.

for sd slot, i found myself doesn't used it where i used to be when cloud storage is so convenience nowadays. Perhaps some old folks still love sd slot as they havent adapt into new technology

posted on 01 Sep 2013, 02:21 5

97. AnTuTu (Posts: 1580; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)


"Perhaps some old folks still love sd slot as they haven't adapt into new technology" ?????

Does that mean Millions who have bought S4 are Old Folks who still love SD slots and haven't adapted new technology??
That's just a ridiculous comment you have made. Go do some research.

posted on 08 Mar 2014, 17:12

157. the.masters (Posts: 3; Member since: 08 Mar 2014)


Having a sd slot dont make the phone better and if your looking for big storige get a hdd not a phone

posted on 01 Sep 2013, 11:19 8

105. NexusKoolaid (Posts: 481; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


@special4u - Perhaps some folks still love the SD slot because they have low data caps or don't have unlimited data plans? Maybe they don't have access to Wifi at all times of the day? Maybe they find themselves in area with poor coverage?

And does having to deal with any one of these challenges make one old?

posted on 06 Sep 2013, 10:24

130. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)


Great reply +1

posted on 01 Sep 2013, 18:51 3

110. JEverettnow (Posts: 228; Member since: 11 Mar 2013)


I love having physical backups. Cloud storage isn't for me. I use dropbox, but I have a plethora of 32 and 16 gig sd cards. I want an SD card slot. Especially since SD storage capacity and speed is increasing every year.

Also, removeable batteries are great. I'm a phone tech and removing a battery can solve a lot of issues. The HTC one and Evo 4g LTE has a horrible problem with not turning back on once they fall asleep while being charged. Opening the HTC Evo 4g LTE and unplugging the battery works every time. For the one it isn't that simple. I love removeable batteries and the ability to swap them when I need extra juice and cant wait for a charge. You sir are a festigio

posted on 13 Sep 2013, 04:21

147. jinxed (Posts: 107; Member since: 10 Jan 2013)


i understand wad ur saying. But i had an xperia s (non removable battery)and der was dis thingy where u hold down the power button for 10 secs or sumthin and the system will power off exactly like when one removes the battery. And like u,when ma Xperia went crazy sumtyms, i just did that nd after restart worked just fine! Maybe even G2 has that. :)

posted on 02 Sep 2013, 09:12 1

121. buccob (Posts: 2578; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)


When the largest portion of the world today wants good phones but the network is poor, cloud services just dont cut it... I rather have all my music, video and pictures handy all the time, without depending on network connection...

Having options is always a plus... thats why Android is on top...

posted on 02 Sep 2013, 15:44 1

124. RiseAgainst94 (Posts: 281; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)


Samsung just got pooped on. In every way.

posted on 06 Sep 2013, 10:25

131. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)


Have you seen Note 3 Yet????

posted on 06 Sep 2013, 19:26

134. downphoenix (Posts: 3165; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)


it also costs more, is too big to be comfortable to use, and has a stylus that most people wont need.

For the time being, G2 is on the top.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 01:32

140. Michaelhall43 (Posts: 2; Member since: 15 Mar 2013)


I take it you have never used a Note device before, for any sustained period of time, because most Note users would say they got used to the size in one week.

posted on 10 Sep 2013, 10:49

142. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)


Note 3 is a device with which you can actualy work. However if you just play games on a phone g2 is better

posted on 08 Mar 2014, 17:23

158. the.masters (Posts: 3; Member since: 08 Mar 2014)


Yes note 3 is a nice phone but plastick the only thing making it difrant is size and pen nothing more the G2 is all out difrant 1st the OIS the 1st of its kind the trim also the 1st go look at the efort that went into the phone that makes it better now look at the note3 its the note2 on crack same thing more power better look nothing more and yes i have a note3

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 10:56

2. HeWhoDoesNothing (Posts: 157; Member since: 15 Jul 2013)


Is there a video up? Either way, it's the G2 or the Z1, preferably both!

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 12:27 1

38. _Bone_ (Posts: 2155; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)


Usually takes some time for it to upload.

Gotta say I got caught unguarded, vowed never to have another LG device after a miserable battery failure years back with no alternative presented, but this is an absolute stunning device in every way, if this is what the Nexus 5 is based on, my Nexus 4 - coming next week - will have a short visit over here.

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 12:37

40. _Bone_ (Posts: 2155; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)


If I can have a small criticism about the otherwise spectacular camera: the dynamic range seems more on the average size, the same Exmor RS on the S4 Octa and the PureView 808 do a better job in more challenging bright conditions. HDR is a bit off too. That's all the negativity I can say, saturation, level of details, compression, everything is on the raw side of things.

posted on 06 Sep 2013, 10:25

132. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)


For me it's Note 3

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:00

3. imkyle (Posts: 1076; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)


Was there even a mention of the phones specs as far as processor and GPU? Ant performance tests?

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:10 2

6. pooop (Posts: 7; Member since: 30 Aug 2013)


There's already a benchmark video; the specs are (might be off with the GPU):
-CPU: Quad-core Qualcomm Krait 400 @ 2.26GHz
-SoC: Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 SoC
-GPU: Adreno 330

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:14

7. imkyle (Posts: 1076; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)


Thank you.

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:02 7

4. Jericho (unregistered)


9.4!!!!LG G2 Rockx. NOW waiting for the Z1. LG has finally gone big with this phone.

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:31 16

12. GTR722 (Posts: 261; Member since: 20 Oct 2012)


Z1 and G2 are going to kill the S4...Samsung needs to hurry with the S5 xD

posted on 31 Aug 2013, 11:42 6

20. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10457; Member since: 14 May 2012)


G2 will affect the S4 sales, but Z1 won't. If the XZ didn't, what makes you think it will be different? Samsung sold over 20 million S4's already, don't see it stopping anytime soon.

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LG G2

LG G2

OS: Android 5.0 4.4.2 4.2.2
view full specs
Display5.2 inches, 1080 x 1920 pixels (423 ppi) IPS LCD
Camera13 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, Quad-core, 2260 MHz, Krait 400 processor
2 GB RAM
Size5.45 x 2.79 x 0.35 inches
(138.5 x 70.9 x 8.9 mm)
5.04 oz  (143 g)
Battery3000 mAh, 34.3 hours talk time

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