LG Optimus 2X Review
Very often it turns out that it’s more important to be first than be the best. The LG Optimus 2X is the first commercially available smartphone with a 1GHz dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 chipset, and this feat alone makes it special.
There are other, and more interesting phones coming up with two CPU cores, as much as there are other, more powerful dual-core chipsets than Tegra 2, but none of those you can take for a spin or buy yet. Their loss.
Back in last summer we wrote that due to sinking market share LG is plotting the creation of an Optimus line of handsets, and on top of its food chain will be a powerful phone with a dual-core chipset from NVIDIA, which at the time was selling its Tegra 2 platform to anybody willing to listen.
Both were considered underdogs then - LG due to the never-ending supply of uninspiring feature phones, and NVIDIA due to the fact that Qualcomm, Samsung and TI all had dual-core chipsets in the works, which were more powerful and efficient than its already done Tegra 2.
Both LG and NVIDIA bet heavily on the first-to-market slogan, and we have the end result of NVIDIA trying to get a foothold in the cell phone business, using LG’s urging need to stand out somehow. The LG Optimus 2X is supposed to be the most powerful Android phone to date, but what can dual-core do for you in reality? Read on to find out...
The phone feels very solid when held, with its 4.9 ounces (140 grams), and is borderline large, but its decent 0.43” (11 mm) thickness comes somewhat to the rescue. Still, there is too much empty space below the screen for the phone to be considered normal size.
You can compare the LG Optimus 2X with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
The large 4” screen has 480x800 pixels of resolution, and is bright, with wide viewing angles, and punchy colors - most probably an IPS-LCD, which currently is one of the best LCD technologies. LG is making the Retina Display for the iPhone 4, and the screens on its latest high-end phones, like the Optimus 2X and the LG Optimus Black, can attest to its display manufacturing prowess. There are four capacitive Android buttons below the screen, which are quite responsive.
The elevated square module on the back hosts the 8MP camera sensor with LED flash, which transitions nicely into a chromed strip running along the middle of the back cover, which carries etched Google branding. The same strip we are seeing on LG's upcoming G-Slate tablet, so it might be the mark of a product line now. There is also a front-facing camera for video chat above the display, but no LED notification light.
The sides don’t have much going on for them – there are separate volume buttons on the right, and a power/lock button at the top, all of which are easy to press, with a nice feedback. On the top are also the standard audio jack, and an HDMI port with a protective cap, which is very easy to pry open. The bottom hosts the microUSB port and two stereo speakers, making the phone a multimedia delight, among its other virtues.
We liked the spartan, streamlined industrial design on the LG Optimus 2X. There is just the right amount of quality materials, like the soft-touch plastic and the metal strip on the back, which prevent the handset from looking plain.