LG G3 vs Sony Xperia Z2
LG has started gaining steam in the Android flagship world with its last year's LG G2 and Nexus 5, and this year it tries to keep up the pace with the brand new LG G3. The G3 is the first phone from a first-tier brand to come with a Quad HD (1440 x 2560-pixel) display and it ups the screen size for a flagship phone to a large 5.5 inches. The Sony Xperia Z2, on the other hand, is one of the many flagship phones that compete directly against the G3, and it’s time we compared these two devices in-depth.
The two are different after all: LG’s G3, on one hand, has a plastic body, while the Xperia Z2 is made of glass; LG’s phone has got a 13-megapixel OIS+ camera, while the Z2 sports a 20-megapixel one with larger sensor; and while both run on Android 4.4 KitKat, their custom skins differ a lot.
Is one better than the other on the whole? Let’s find out.
UPDATE (Jun 25, 2014): This comparison was originally based on our experience with the Korean version of the LG G3. After testing the International (European) version of the phone, we've updated the story with our new findings, affecting the display, camera and battery performance.
Both the LG G3 and Sony Xperia Z2 are large, but the Sony feels more premium, with a glass body, while the G3 has a ‘metallic’, but not metal body that’s made of polycarbonate.
In terms of design, the LG G3 is a refinement, but not a huge departure from its predecessor - it features those signature rear buttons, and very minimal bezel up front, but it has also grown larger, packing a 5.5-inch display that makes it nearly phablet-sized. While LG claims that the G3 is ‘metallic’, the phone actually has a polycarbonate shell with a brushed metal-like finish that might fool you into thinking this is metal from afar, but once you hold the phone, it becomes clear that you’re holding a plastic device.
The Xperia Z2 also builds up on a legacy of gradual improvements, perfecting further the stylish glass design it started with the original Z. With the Z2, Sony has refashioned the sturdy metal frame and added elegant edges on the side on the Z2, and the phone looks very stylish and well-built.
The size difference between the two is not that big, but it is there: the G3 is wider (2.94” on the G3 vs 2.89” on the Z2), and thicker (0.35” vs 0.32”). Still,both are very large flagship, not all that great for those wearing tight clothes with smaller pockets. The Z2 is not that easier to handle - even though it’s a bit thinner than the G3, it’s a blocky phone with sharp edges that are not all that ergonomic and comfortable to hold. To easen operations, the back of the G3 is curved, a more ergonomic shape that fits better in the hand. In addition, the Z2 is a bit on the heavy side, weighing 5.75oz (163g), heavier than the otherwise larger G3 (5.26oz, or 149g).
The 5.5” Quad HD display on the LG G3 is technically sharper than the Z2, but it’s hard to tell the difference in real life.
The 5.5” Quad HD (1440 x 2560-pixel) display is probably the biggest highlight of the G3, and it’s indeed a super sharp, high-res screen with minimal bezel. In contrast, the Xperia Z2 has got a 5.2” display with a more traditional, 1080 x 1920-pixel resolution that still looks very sharp.
A Quad HD display has nearly 80% more pixels than a 1080p Full HD screen, and pixel density comes in at 533ppi on the G3, against 424ppi on the Z2. All those numbers might sound like a convincing argument in the superiority in sharpness of the G3 screen, but what they don’t tell, is that you’d hardly see any difference unless you have perfect 20/20 vision and stare at the screen from close. Looking at the two displays from a regular viewing distance (of around 10” to 12”), it’s hard to see much of a difference in sharpness at all.
Looking at colors, you’d notice that both the G3 and Z2 do very well in terms of color temperature: the G3 has a color temp valuation of 7100K and the Z2 – of 6900K, both very close to our reference value of 6500K, which means they both appear well-balanced and not too cold. Color accuracy, however, is not perfect on either one: the LG G3 fits in the sRGB color gamut, but it is slightly oversaturated, while the Xperia Z2 has a larger gamut and again - blown out colors. Color deviation (Delta E), though, sits at the fairly reasonable 2.86 for grayscale and 4.59 for rgbcmy on the G3.
Outdoors, the Xperia Z2 does a bit better, even though the two phones are nearly equally bright. The Z2, however, is less reflective, and this makes it slightly easier to read under the bright sunlight. In terms of viewing angles, the IPS LCD displays on both are fine (although not great), but the G3 is a bit better, preserving more fully its color at an angle.
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|
|Sony Xperia Z2||458
The numbers below represent the amount of deviation in the respective property, observed when a display is viewed from a 45-degree angle as opposed to direct viewing.
|Maximum brightness Lower is better||Minimum brightness Lower is better||Contrast Lower is better||Color temperature Lower is better||Gamma Lower is better||Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better||Delta E grayscale Lower is better|
|Sony Xperia Z2||90.4%
The CIE 1931 xy color gamut chart represents the set (area) of colors that a display can reproduce, with the sRGB colorspace (the highlighted triangle) serving as reference. The chart also provides a visual representation of a display's color accuracy. The small squares across the boundaries of the triangle are the reference points for the various colors, while the small dots are the actual measurements. Ideally, each dot should be positioned on top of its respective square. The 'x: CIE31' and 'y: CIE31' values in the table below the chart indicate the position of each measurement on the chart. 'Y' shows the luminance (in nits) of each measured color, while 'Target Y' is the desired luminance level for that color. Finally, 'ΔE 2000' is the Delta E value of the measured color. Delta E values of below 2 are ideal.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
The Color accuracy chart gives an idea of how close a display's measured colors are to their referential values. The first line holds the measured (actual) colors, while the second line holds the reference (target) colors. The closer the actual colors are to the target ones, the better.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
The Grayscale accuracy chart shows whether a display has a correct white balance (balance between red, green and blue) across different levels of grey (from dark to bright). The closer the Actual colors are to the Target ones, the better.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
9. chocowii (Posts: 353; Member since: 30 Jan 2014)
Two of most good looking flagships to date.
18. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3386; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)
I don't mind bezels. At least there are some great speakers underneath them. And the overall design is just so beautiful!
30. refillable (Posts: 702; Member since: 10 Mar 2014)
Well I do, yes speakers are the best out there, but I don't like how they've done the bezels. The M7, however was great.
31. refillable (Posts: 702; Member since: 10 Mar 2014)
No, The particular bezel on the M8 are just yucky to me. Much bezels don't essentially mean bad design, but if they're done badly they can affect the design terribly. Well at least This is my opinion, you may not agree with me.
40. techperson211 (Posts: 735; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)
No doubt 2 innovative phones. Boils down to preference.
22. akki20892 (Posts: 3703; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
trueeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee..........both r great.
46. 3rdDegree (Posts: 171; Member since: 13 Jul 2013)
Ouch. How could they get the PPI figure incorrect? It's 538. Not 533!
2. hipnotika (Posts: 317; Member since: 06 Mar 2013)
why lg made g3's screen's contrast too low :/ it's screen is too cold :(
12. jaytai0106 (Posts: 1611; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)
There are two breaking point for me to go with the Z2.
- I thought this feature is just a bonus, but after having Z2 for two months it's a feature I can't part with.
2. The headphone jack is on the top
- I put my phone in my armband when I run and having the port on top is much easier to plug it in.
10. PapaSmurf (Posts: 9071; Member since: 14 May 2012)
For the first time ever, I can finally agree with you.
19. T.Law (Posts: 370; Member since: 10 May 2014)
It came out much later but the Z2 is still one of the best.
5. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3386; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)
Victor, aren't those Z2 photos taken in 8mpx and manual mode? Why not 20mpx or at least superior auto and 16:9 aspect ratio (in superior it has a slightly higher resolution)?
6. mistertimi (Posts: 76; Member since: 28 May 2014)
Z2 for me. Every category is pretty much a draw, but after having an Xperia Z there's no way I can go back to a non-waterproof phone. Showers just wouldn't be the same lol
17. billgates (banned) (Posts: 555; Member since: 29 May 2014)
I agree. After having my s5 in the shower I'll never go back to a non waterproof phone
34. lallolu (Posts: 258; Member since: 18 Sep 2012)
Why do you guys like having your phones in the shower? Watching dirty films to simulate things not there?
35. mistertimi (Posts: 76; Member since: 28 May 2014)
Haha not gonna lie, I've knocked one out with my phone in the shower ;). But the ability to put it on loudspeaker while talking to someone, or just listening to music/being able to switch tracks etc or just watch tv is epic
47. gaara6775 (Posts: 622; Member since: 20 May 2014)
This is not necessary you made it as your necessity.
49. mistertimi (Posts: 76; Member since: 28 May 2014)
It's necessary because I shower everyday, and like doing so with my phone. Sure it's not a necessity like the ability to make phone calls or send texts.. but then again, barely any features are. I'm sure many people wouldnt leave the iPhone 5s because of the fingerprint scanner. Couldn't they just use a pin or password instead? Sure, but it's a necessity for them. It's what they need from a phone in order to make the purchase.
I NEED a coffee in the morning. Of course, if I don't have it I won't die lol, but you can bet that I'll be in a worse mood. Same as if I couldn't watch stuff in the shower, or the i5s people couldn't unlock their phones with their fingerprint.
Please don't nitpick Gaara. We all know Naruto schooled your ass in full-blown one-tailed form, don't make me go Sage on you ;)
50. gaara6775 (Posts: 622; Member since: 20 May 2014)
OK so you mean only water resistant phones are good because you take shower with them? That can only happen in my Infinite Tsukuyomi :p (I'm no gaara fanboy :p)
I wish what would be everyone's reaction when phones become fire resistant ,lolz .
8. antonioli (Posts: 193; Member since: 08 Sep 2013)
Two good options. I expect people can choice them instead of only thinking about Galaxy.
13. Android4EveryOne (Posts: 9; Member since: 19 Apr 2014)
I'll take a galaxy S5 or a note 3 any day of the week over these phones. They are very nice phones but just not for me...
20. T.Law (Posts: 370; Member since: 10 May 2014)
I don't know about the S5 but I kinda miss my Note3. I'll definitely switch to the Note 4 later this year.
16. billgates (banned) (Posts: 555; Member since: 29 May 2014)
Wow the z2 is one sex phone. I would love to get my hands on one
24. buba05 (Posts: 8; Member since: 28 Dec 2011)
I don't understand those guys from phonearena. They can't see the differences between FULL HD and QHD on such a small display but they say it's better altough QHD brings notihing more than a bigger load on a CPU-u and GPU-u. But apparently it's ok because only thing we need is just to brag about specs! And they mention it like 100 times that the LG G3 has the upper hand because of the resolution but it doesn't. WE DON'T NEED QHD BECAUSE NOBODY CAN SEE THE DIFFERENCE!! I agree LG G3 is a monster of device, the thin bezels and screen to size ratio but because of that QHD it's like they are going to be like samsug with theyr "innovatons"
26. josephnero (Posts: 332; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)
and for me Z2 has better screen overall because of much higher brightness and contrast
48. gaara6775 (Posts: 622; Member since: 20 May 2014)
Z2's white looks reddish. Check yours if you're getting one.
25. AnukulVcool (unregistered)
pretending I said this to sony : just shove off those up/down bezels sony, you are turning quite a few down. and about your surround sound speakers on z2 : no , don't mimic surround sound on small magnets, its sounds so fake. just give a proper stereo speakers on z3 just like m8. I really expect an optically stabilized lens on z3 with no hassle 4k video recording. sony, you are quite close to offer the best android flagship, quite close. don't care about 2k screen , just don't go above 5.2" inch
28. xperian (Posts: 81; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)
Both are great but I prefer Z2 because of glass and metal body and better display
32. salouri (Posts: 4; Member since: 28 May 2014)
for the record, the battery test done on phonearena few days ago, that included LG G3, is not scientific. And I don't even think its realistic.
Much more sophisticated and detailed battery tests are coming soon and I am sure Z2 won't even come behind G3 in this area too. Z2 is ahead of G3 in many other areas already: design and build quality, audio experience(headsets & speakers), waterproofing, and Camera!
37. Diezparda (Posts: 244; Member since: 23 Oct 2013)
I think G3 design was better, it's curvy and more ergonomic compared to Z2 and even it's made of plastic it's not a fingerprint magnet like Z2 glass cover. Audio? some review said the Z2 volume level was very quiet, higher noise & distortion although only a few audiophiles are able to notice. G3 camera was good and it's evenly match with Z2, very nice detail, warmer tone and equiped with OIS.
39. DerryAhmad (Posts: 247; Member since: 05 May 2012)
PhoneArena battery test is for scenario when you're using the phone non-stop until the battery dies,
That doesn't seem too realistic for me in real life since it ignored the standby usage.
However the charging time is excellent, second only to Oppo 7/7a
33. gaara6775 (Posts: 622; Member since: 20 May 2014)
G3 for me. What's impressive is the battery backup & charging time. Damn,g3 charges in 120mins that's insanely good :D . also it has ergonomics while z2 is just flat .
38. DerryAhmad (Posts: 247; Member since: 05 May 2012)
Seems like an evenly match. You can't go wrong with any devices I think.
The G3 seems to take oversaturated pictures, it's a bit unnatural but more pleasing to the eyes.
But the review is kinda disappointment for me for omitting the indoor-low light-non flash photo samples.
41. Brosepower (Posts: 35; Member since: 21 Apr 2014)
Two great phones, too bad the Z2 isnt coming to any of the US carriers any time soon. That means the G3 is the only option for us here in the US and IMO it is a significantly better device than either the S5 or M8. Especially the large screen size vs body. Multitasking is something that LG has been excelling at lately, both multi-window AND quick slide are going to be epic.
42. gigaraga (Posts: 1384; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)
Still take the G3 over the Z2. The Z2 doesnt seem 'perfect' just yet. And its a bit too overestimated by a lot of people sometimes...G3 seems really good though
43. emadshiny (Posts: 1142; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
Go home, you're drunk.
What is imperfect is your logic.
45. gaara6775 (Posts: 622; Member since: 20 May 2014)
G3 won in the blind camera test, that's made him say that, may be.
44. Finest (Posts: 79; Member since: 16 Aug 2013)
i'd go for Z2 anyday man why?
- Its japanese we all know how great japanese technology is.
- its a water resistant phone life will never be the same after having a water resistant phone.
- the DESIGN very sleek and Elegant, well its a matter of taste
- Speakers man, Loud and clear and the location where it placed is so perfect.
- Live LED technology do some research youll know what i mean.
- CAMERA far better than G3
- the Solid feeling holding something premium is very remarkable
and lastly the PRICE its far more cheaper than G3 VALUE FOR THE MONEY MAN !
51. bespredelshik (Posts: 2; Member since: 28 Aug 2014)
Another good overview of the comparison here youtube.com/watch?v=iH1MhBuXavQ