LG Optimus 7 Review
The camera interface of the LG Optimus 7 is very simplistic. There's a camera/camcorder switch, digital zoom buttons, and a settings key. The latter gives you to a menu with the pompous name “Photo Smart Settings”. It includes basic stuff like resolution, brightness, white balance, effects and quality, as well as some more specific options such as Intelligent shot (like scene modes), Beauty shot (tries to remove visual imperfections) and ScanSearch, which is a beautiful piece of augmented reality software. Powered by information from either Google or Bing, LG's ScanSearch feature uses the device's onboard camera and digital compass to show you the exact direction of of various points of interest ranging from restaurants, cafes and banks, to hotels, schools and pharmacies. When you hold the phone in front of you, as if you're about to take a picture, the POIs pop up as in a typical augmented reality app. When you tilt the phone down, it switches to an overview 2D map that shows your location and the POIs around you. Pointing the phone to the sky, on the other hand, will display the latest weather forecast. The app shows you points of interest that happen to be up to 5km from you.
The photos that we took on a cloudy day turned out to have decent sharpness and detail, though noise was an issue at times. Color reproduction is generally good, although some of our shots came out with inaccurate white balance when using auto mode. There is no special macro mode on the handset, but we tried a few close-ups and they turned out surprisingly good. Exposure levels are just fine, as objects are illuminated decently, but dynamic range on the LG Optimus 7 is certainly not point-and-shoot grade yet.
We were a bit saddened to find out that indoors, the 5MP camera performs extraordinary weakly. Significant noise and blurriness are present even in conditions with lots of light, while in darker situations the photos get just terrible. Unfortunately, the LED flash is useless. Seriously, we tried to think of some possible application it may have and ended up with nothing.
The camcorder can shoot in HD 720p resolution, which is perfectly satisfying. However, there's a bit of a stutter at times, and with an FPS rate of 24, the produced video is far from smooth. Detail is mediocre, while the captured sound is of somewhat poor quality.
LG Optimus 7 Sample Video:
Multimedia on the LG Optimus 7 is handled by the Music + Videos Hub. It doesn't need much introduction though. This is where all the partying happens and we have to say that Windows Phone 7's way to get things done is very suitable for the job. It is really fun to see the artist you are listening to take up the background space with a panoramic image – it immediately makes the experience better than what you get on most of the competition.
Besides the playing track/video, in this hub you will also find some other data like a history of the media that you've consumed (gee, we hate the sound of that). From the menu you can jump to your music library, videos, podcasts, FM radio or the Zune Marketplace.
One drawback of the music player is that it too relies on a very simplistic interface, meaning that its options are quite limited. That's very unfortunate with the LG Optimus 7, which could have really used an equalizer (read: bass booster) when playing music through the supplied earphones. Music quality is passable for the most part, but loudness is not high enough, and when you reach the highest volume levels, nasty crackling noises start to occur. And that's in headset mode! Once you get to the loudspeaker – actually the LG Optimus 7 lacks a dedicated loudspeaker, it uses the earpiece – things get even worse, with weak and overly-sharp sounds.
The LG Optimus 7 plays MPEG-4 video files at resolutions of up to 720p. However, if you sync DivX or Xvid videos with Zune, it will automatically convert them to MPEG-4, so that you can watch them. Although it's not an AMOLED display, the LCD of the Optimus 7 is still good enough for casual watching of videos, even more so when you take the 3.8” diagonal into account.
The Office Hub is probably a place where Windows Phone 7 users will spend quite a lot of time. And unlike what we experienced with Microsoft's great new browser, we were a bit underwhelmed by what we found in the Office Hub. Basically, OneNote support is just fine, but Word, is very limited, especially when it comes to formatting options. Of course, you can also create, view and edit Excel files (there's a fine selection of available functions to choose from) on the LG Optimus 7, as well as view and edit PowerPoint presentations. However, editing here comes down to just editing text.
You can download additional software for the LG Optimus 7 from the Marketplace Hub, which is home to about 1000 apps right now. There's obviously a lot of catching-up to be done in this area by Microsoft, but it's still a decent selection for a start. WP7 shows potential for fine gaming capabilities with the available titles, with things getting even better when you add the Xbox Live integration with the platform. You can do stuff like personalizing your avatar, track various achievements and scores, as well as see requests.
Inside the Marketplace Hub, LG has added its own “LG apps store”, where you'll find about 10 more free apps by the manufacturer, such as “Metro Scanner”, “Photo Stylist” and “I'm a musician – Guitar/Piano”.
“Play To” is a good addition by LG that allows you to stream multimedia content through DLNA to an HDTV, Windows 7 PC or Xbox 360. We've already told you about the other exclusive app you'll get with the LG Optimus 7 – ScanSearch, but there's also the “Panorama Shot” app, which does exactly what its name suggests – panorama shots.
1. p7 (unregistered) posted on 01 Nov 2010, 13:04 0 0
too many wvga 480x800 it would be better if it was fwvga 480x854 widescreen. the camera needs to be at least 8mp and flash
2. BuyMobile posted on 01 Nov 2010, 18:52 0 0
I agree with the widescreen dimensions 480x854. And a flash would come in handy to say the least.
4. Joshing4fun posted on 03 Nov 2010, 07:24 0 0
Do those extra 54 pixels really make a difference?
5. p7 (unregistered) posted on 05 Nov 2010, 10:07 0 0
WVGA (wide VGA) is 480x854 FWGA (full wide VGA) is 480x854. the good thing about FWVGA is that it's a widescreen display which is good as movies wont be cropped. also, i like 16:9 widescreen displays! like hdtv
6. p7 (unregistered) posted on 05 Nov 2010, 10:09 0 0
i meant WVGA can be 480x800 or 480x854 but fwvga is only 480x854
7. UMTS (unregistered) posted on 06 Nov 2010, 11:38 0 0
Not all of AT&T is 3G network is on 1900, a good portion of it is on 850. So is this phone UMTS 900/1900/2100 or 850/1900/2100??? Microsoft says it has UMTS 850.
9. UMTS Reply (unregistered) posted on 24 Jan 2011, 09:30 0 0
I believe the problem is that there are 2 versions of the Optimus 7. The standard from LG is 900/1900/2100 but there is a version sold by Telus in Canada with 850/1900/2100. I have yet to find the phone sold anywhere except the Telus website that lists the 850 3G frequency.
8. LG Review (unregistered) posted on 03 Dec 2010, 21:26 0 0
Another LG Optimus 7 Review.
10. OlliesLGO7 posted on 17 Jun 2011, 11:40 2 0
Beautiful. Got one myself and i must say, WP7 OS does get some getting used to but it is stunning to say the least!