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LG Optimus L9 II Review

LG Optimus L9 II

Posted: , by Nick T.


LG Optimus L9 II Review

LG Optimus L9 II Review
LG Optimus L9 II Review
LG Optimus L9 II Review
LG Optimus L9 II Review

The mid-range Android category isn't as crowded as it may seem. In fact, there's always room for one more handset to join the fun. The LG Optimus L9 II is one of these welcome smartphones and it happens to be the most capable member in the company's Android-powered L-series. As such, it aims to grab our attention with its dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor, 4.7-inch display, and 8MP camera, all encapsulated in a slim and compact body. That's definitely not bad of a package for what the L9 II costs, but whether the phone is a worthy pick or not will be known after we take it through its paces.

In the box:

  • Wall charger
  • USB cable
  • Wired stereo headset with in-line microphone
  • Quick Start guide


The LG Optimus L9 II isn't a phone that can blow one's mind with its appearance. It is a pretty ordinary-looking handset with a boxy, rectangular shape and rather conservative design. What's impressive about it, on the other hand, is that the smartphone is surprisingly compact given the 4.7-inch diagonal size of its screen. Thanks to that, the Optimus L9 II is perfectly usable with a single thumb, and because of its slim profile, it slides effortlessly into any pocket.

As all recent smartphones by the company, the LG Optimus L9 II is a plastic-made device. The glossy finish that its surface has been treated to does attract some finger smudge, but a quick wipe is usually enough to rectify this. Underneath the back cover's shiny layer we see a discrete diamond-like pattern. Visible only under a specific angle, it gives some character to this otherwise modest handset.

On the right side of the LG Optimus L9 II is located its power button. It is easy to reach, but tricky to locate without looking as it is not exposed well enough. The volume rocker, placed on the left side of the device, is easier to operate. Below the screen we find three capacitive navigation buttons. They are well spaced out and respond accurately when tapped.

LG Optimus L9 II
5.06 x 2.62 x 0.37 inches
128.4 x 66.5 x 9.4 mm
4.23 oz (120 g)

LG Optimus L9 II

Samsung Galaxy Core
5.09 x 2.66 x 0.35 inches
129.3 x 67.6 x 8.95 mm
4.37 oz (124 g)

Samsung Galaxy Core

Sony Xperia SP
5.14 x 2.64 x 0.39 inches
130.6 x 67.1 x 9.98 mm
5.47 oz (155 g)

Sony Xperia SP

HTC Desire 500
5.19 x 2.63 x 0.39 inches
131.8 x 66.9 x 9.9 mm
4.34 oz (123 g)

HTC Desire 500

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


There's a beautiful 4.7-inch IPS LCD display gracing the front of the LG Optimus L9 II. It has a resolution of 720 by 1280 pixels, which gives us a pretty high pixel density of 312 ppi. When the handset is held at a normal distance from the user's eyes, there's no visible pixelation or jaggedness whatsoever. From text and graphics to photos and videos, everything looks sharp and detailed. Its viewing angles are excellent as well. Colors, however, are slightly colder, and our screen measurements confirm that, but the deviation is so slight that most users won't notice it. We had no troubles using the L9 II outdoors thanks to its screen's sufficient brightness output.

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 Optimus L9 II 348
Samsung Galaxy Core 343
Sony Xperia SP 490
HTC Desire 500 458
View all

  • Options

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 08:18

1. R-vjn (Posts: 271; Member since: 07 Jan 2013)

For a mid-range device, this is really good, but still 4.1.2..!!???? :O

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 14:25

4. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)

4.1.2 >>>4.2.2 in terms of stability of software.
I don't know about 4.3 or KitKat.

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 08:25

2. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4328; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)

Glad I stuck with SP...this is still a good option thought.
Nick, I tried downloading Asphalt 8 on my SP and it says it's not compatible....why's that?? I thought the CPU and GPU are quite capable. kind of disappointed.

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 08:48

3. Smokin (Posts: 120; Member since: 10 Oct 2013)

me too. i used SP because of its size but im kinda dissaponted.. alot of apps from play store says that file is not compatible

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 14:26

5. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)

Same here.

But a hacked/pirated version of Asphalt 8 works just fine.

posted on 13 Dec 2013, 01:49

6. najib1312 (Posts: 154; Member since: 08 May 2013)

I'm having no isssue with any game titles so far on my SP. But I download my games from Torrents......much faster

posted on 13 Dec 2013, 10:46

7. LGisgood (Posts: 833; Member since: 23 Jun 2012)

L9-II is a Great Phone....

good camera
good simple design
good video recording

sweet UI

FAST as we expect for its category...
i recommended this for those you can't afford G2!

posted on 16 Dec 2013, 20:34

8. ArtZGraphic (Posts: 16; Member since: 04 Sep 2013)

nice phone with a beatiful screen and faster processor, good camera and video recording and other useful multimedia features. i recommended this phone rather than L7 II. and its boxy design looked quite elegant.

posted on 23 Dec 2013, 03:04

9. alfealicious11 (Posts: 2; Member since: 31 Dec 2011)

Android 4.1.2 at this time is bull. Other manufacturers will eat LG alive.

posted on 23 Dec 2013, 06:09

10. TheRiseAgainst (Posts: 5; Member since: 23 Dec 2013)

You are wrong. It might have come with 4.1.2 but it will probably get an update to 4.4. Who cares if its 4.1.2 or 4.2 out of box? Now give me an example of similiar phones to this in this price range? So?

posted on 29 Dec 2013, 09:06

11. R-vjn (Posts: 271; Member since: 07 Jan 2013)

Galaxy S4 mini is only a tad higher in price but comes with 4.2.2 and it was released way back in July. Same is Xperia C, comes with 4.2.2 and released in July.
Nothing against LG, but this phone should have released with 4.3 at least.

posted on 30 Dec 2013, 06:53

12. TheRiseAgainst (Posts: 5; Member since: 23 Dec 2013)

Its 50€, thats not a tad. Well I'd rather have a 4.1 android than laggy TouchWiz.

Whats the difference between 4.1 and 4.2 or 4.3 anyway?

posted on 02 Jan 2014, 05:49

13. R-vjn (Posts: 271; Member since: 07 Jan 2013)

well, touchwiz is sure laggy. I'm just saying the OS that this phone comes with is just horrible. Its more than an year old my friend..!

To know the differences between the 3 versions, i suggest you check this link out and you will know.


I'm pretty sure you have no experience on the 3 versions. lols

posted on 02 Jan 2014, 06:19

14. TheRiseAgainst (Posts: 5; Member since: 23 Dec 2013)

Okay but there is nothing significant that would make all the phones run faster, just some little fixes.

I agree that between 4.1 and 4.4 there is a difference, but previous ones not really.

And the OS is not horrible, do you even have this phone? I runs very well, who cares its 1 year old? Its smooth, snappy what else do you want? Even phones with newer androids have more laggy UI, the well known TouchWiz is a great example.

I would be happy if this phone receives 4.4 update, that would be cool, but besides the transparent bar and difference in icons, app drawer, etc. there is not much of performance boost.

posted on 03 Jan 2014, 11:28

15. R-vjn (Posts: 271; Member since: 07 Jan 2013)

I admit that Touchwiz is dead laggy, and personally I hate that too. And LG's UI always are much more fluidic even though its heavy.
My friend, the different versions also brings supports for many things as you might have read in that link, its not just the bug fixes. Also a lot more shortcuts. The lockscreen widgets and 2 finger notification bars are just examples. And also better battery and app management, which can again be improved by LG's own software tweeks.
I would be really happy if this gets 4.4 soon, and even I hope it will, coz I've shortlisted this phone for someone. ;-) :-)

posted on 04 Jan 2014, 07:33

16. TheRiseAgainst (Posts: 5; Member since: 23 Dec 2013)

I only checked it quicky, I didnt read it all but most of them are not that important. Personally I like the UI changes but look: Refreshed interface with white elements instead of blue, Wireless printing capability, etc. There is only one thats important and its: Optimizations for performance on devices...

It will get some updates, I contacted LG support so hopefully there were telling the truth. And 4.4 would be the best, I would much more welcome that than if they did update sooner but only to 4.2 or 4.3. Its still pretty new phone so they should update it.

posted on 02 Feb 2014, 06:14

17. TomiQo_o (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Feb 2014)

Please Sony Xperia SP or that LG Optimus L9 II

posted on 17 Jun 2014, 18:16

18. SorinMares (Posts: 1; Member since: 17 Jun 2014)

bought this one few days back now. Updated flawlessly to kitkat, works like a drean with a ton of apps installed; full hd movies run great, sceen has vibrant colors, camera is good. only thing to object is the sd slot not accesible without removing the cover.

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LG Optimus L9 II

LG Optimus L9 II

OS: Android 4.4.2 4.1.2
view full specs
PhoneArena rating:
Display4.7 inches, 720 x 1280 pixels (312 ppi) IPS LCD
Camera8 megapixels
Qualcomm Snapdragon 400, Dual-core, 1400 MHz
Size5.06 x 2.62 x 0.37 inches
(128.4 x 66.5 x 9.4 mm)
4.23 oz  (120 g)
Battery2150 mAh, 7.4 hours talk time

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