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LG Vu Review


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Camera interface - LG Vu Review
Camera interface - LG Vu Review

While it does come equipped with a 2.0MP like most of its competition, the Vu could use a better camera seeing as it is a high-end handset that has only recently been launched. But size isn't everything as we still have to consider image quality and how navigable the camera interface is.

For us, the interface is very neatly laid out and it should be easy for a first time user, to know where everything is. Bars along the left and right side of the screen hold the most commonly used options (resolution, zoom, scene mode) while items such as image quality, shutter tone, and storage source are located in the settings menu. At the very bottom is a small status bar that lists the options that have been set.

To use video share, both handsets must have this option and be on a 3G network or it will not be accessible. We did not have another handset to test this option with.

Now you’re all probably wondering how the image quality is and we must say that it’s very disappointing. Images came out very blurry with purple fringing in many of the shots. Even in the brightest environments, there was a lot of noise that was captured and colors looked unnatural. The lack of flash makes the camera useless in dark environments.

Outdoor Images - LG Vu Review
Outdoor Images - LG Vu Review
Outdoor Images - LG Vu Review

Outdoor Images

Strong Light - Indoor Samples - LG Vu Review
Medium Light - Indoor Samples - LG Vu Review
Low Light - Indoor Samples - LG Vu Review

Strong Light

Medium Light

Low Light

Indoor Samples

Video capture faired better but not by much. Video quality is about what you find on YouTube. The resolution is down to 320x240 (available only with general record mode) or 176x144, scene mode is limited to night mode, and the record modes are MMS mode, video share, or general mode.

LG Vu sample video at 320x240 pixels resolution

Media Player:

No handset would be complete without some sort of media player and the Vu takes it one step further, by including a TV service, thanks to AT&T's mobile TV. The media player itself is a very basic one but gets the job done. Once in the now playing screen, controlling the song is easy thanks to the large buttons. As for the visualization, it’s either the album art or one of two spectrum analyzers. Apart from the repeat and shuffle, the last option is an equalizer, which made a very small difference in sound.

Music playback - LG Vu Review
Music playback - LG Vu Review

Music playback

Video - LG Vu Review


When watching media, the general layout stays the same, but there are a few options that have been added and some that have been taken away. There is the option of watching the video in landscape mode, to make the most of the screen. There’s an ability to take screenshots from what is being watched and save or send them. The final option is the ability to send the video via Bluetooth or a message. In our test, we could only open an h263 video file for preview.

Sound quality on both videos and music is great. It’s no surprise that bass is very lacking on a handset but music still came back through. Vocals were strong and clear and were not drowned out by instruments. The headsets were only slightly better with bass but sounded no better than the handset itself.


Now the real treat from this model, mobile TV. The channels available depend on the subscription, but what we’re really interested in are the options and just how well it works. Well, to answer both really quickly, we would have to say great.

The interface is simple and to the point. In the top left, there is a shortcut that opens up the guide menu for all of the channels. Here, all the shows currently playing as well as upcoming ones, can be previewed along with their information. Also accessible from this screen are options for subscription manager, parental controls, and updates. Back on the home screen, the only other changes that can be made would be to adjust the volume, switch to another channel, or exit the service. Quality is great and makes the experience even more pleasant. To acquire signal, it takes about 2 to 3 seconds, so there’s very little waiting and we experienced no issues when using this service in the car as long as we weren’t caught under a bridge or other blackout zone.

LG Vu Review
LG Vu Review
LG Vu Review
LG Vu Review

Quality is just as great and makes the experience very pleasant regardless of whether on the EDGE or 3G network. As long as there was strong signal, it seemed to work flawlessly. Of course, image quality was better on the 3G network but on a 3 inch screen, it’s not as noticeable as it would be on a regular TV.

LG Vu Review
Gallery - LG Vu Review


Apart from just watching TV on the go, would it be possible to open or edit, say a Word or PDF document, to get that assignment done, before getting into the office? Sadly, it is not possible to open or edit any of them. It’s a shame too because with the QWERTY keyboard, a lot could be done.

The Vu does come with five games, but they are all demos. Each one makes use of either the full touch sensitive screen or on-screen buttons. The controls were rather frustrating as instead of using a D-pad, there are five buttons in two rows that have to be used.

Viewing photos is actually very easy, thanks to the built-in slider. It recalls to mind a little of how the iPhone flips through the albums. Well, almost. Instead of all of the photos being blown up, the selected one is the center of focus while the rest are just below and minimized.

An image editor is also supplied with the phone that allows one to change color effects, resize, rotate, and mirror the image.

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PhoneArena rating:
Display3.0 inches, 240 x 400 pixels (155 ppi) TFT
Camera2 megapixels
Size4.25 x 2.16 x 0.51 inches
(108 x 55 x 13 mm)
3.16 oz  (94 g)
Battery1000 mAh, 3 hours talk time

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