So let's say that you're interested in getting a new high-end smartphone, and having a huge display is one of your top priorities. Well, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is among the handsets matching that description – it is fast, loaded to the brim with neat features, and equipped with a gorgeous 5.7-inch touchscreen. However, as in most cases, there's a number of alternatives to consider – high-end alternatives that will fit in your pockets much more easily than the Note 3, yet will provide you with a screen that is nearly as spacious. One of them is the LG G2, packing a 5.2-inch display and the hardware muscle needed to give Samsung's phablet some heated competition. Without a doubt, choosing a favorite between these two smartphones is no easy task, so let's dive into it and see what they have to win our hearts with.


It is hard to say which one of these two smartphones looks better, primarily because neither of them has much to sparkle with. Don't get us wrong – they definitely can't be described as bad-looking, but putting at least a little more effort into improving their appearance wouldn't have hurt anyone.

The plastic-made Samsung Galaxy Note 3, with its conservative shape and leather-like plastic back plate, looks and feels a bit more like a device built with professionals in mind. Its textured surface has a very low tendency to slip out of your palm, and that's quite a big deal since handling this jumbo-sized handset can be challenging. At the same time, no fingerprints or pocket lint get stuck to the Note 3's back, so it looks nice and spotless pretty much all of the time.

The LG G2 looks and feels quite okay and has a better chance at appealing to the younger crowd with its curvy physique. But again, its design can't make any jaws drop as we see nothing extraordinary about its construction or build quality. It sports a body made of glossy plastic treated to a fine, discrete pattern seen on the handset's back plate. Smudgy traces build up on its surface rather quickly, but thankfully, they are easy to get rid of with a quick wipe.

What does make the LG G2 stand out, however, is its size. For a smartphone packing a huge, 5.2-inch touchscreen, it feels surprisingly compact and it would definitely fit easier in your pocket than the Galaxy Note 3. Furthermore, while handling Samsung's phablet with a single hand is a challenge, the LG G2 is a lot more suitable for single-handed use.

One of the tricks that the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 has tucked up its sleeve is the S Pen it comes bundled with. Resting in its dedicated slot, that is a pressure-sensitive digital stylus and a perk every Galaxy Note device offers. The accessory is used much like a real pen, but instead of paper, a virtual canvas is used for writing on. Entering text by hand, drawing, taking down notes, and navigating through the phablet's interface are all among the main uses for the S Pen. Naturally, there's a number of S Pen optimized apps and features built into the UI, and you can learn more about them in our Galaxy Note 3 review.

Lifting the Note 3's back cover reveals its user-replaceable 3200mAh battery, as well as its slots for the Micro SIM and microSD cards. Alas, the LG G2 has a non-removable back cover so its 3000mah battery is off limits. No microSD card slot is present on the G2, so you'll have to rely solely on its built-in storage.

LG has placed the G2's power and volume keys on the back for a couple of reasons. Firstly, that has allowed for the company's engineers to make the phone more narrow (read: easier to hold), and secondly, this unorthodox solution is meant to make these buttons easier to access. Well, we've been using the LG G2 for a while now, and while we're fine with having the power and volume keys placed where they are, we don't think that their placement makes them easier to operate.

Buttons on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 are arranged in a typical for the company fashion, with a large physical home key below the screen accompanied by a pair of capacitive buttons for the back and menu functions. The power and volume keys are positioned on the right and left sides respectively and are easy to reach despite the handset's size.


Screen quality plays a crucial role in determining whether a given smartphone is worthy of attention. Well, the good news is that neither of these two handsets disappoints in that respect. Their manufacturers have outfitted them with near-excellent displays – a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED screen graces the front of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, while the LG G2 packs a beautiful 5.2-inch IPS LCD panel. Their resolution is 1080 by 1920 pixels, as is now typical for top-of-the-line Android smartphones.

Looking at size alone, the Note 3 definitely has the upper hand since its screen is larger than the one on the G2. That makes Samsung's phablet more suitable for a number of tasks that would benefit from the extra real estate, such as browsing the internet, enjoying photos or videos, playing games and so on. But size is not everything, and the G2's display, despite being smaller by half an inch, is also a pleasure to admire. In fact, we find the screen on LG's flagship slightly more detailed – something that doesn't surprise us given its higher pixel density (423ppi vs 386ppi for the Note 3) and the fact that a standard RGB sub-pixel arrangement is in use, as opposed to the Note 3's Diamond sub-pixel panel.

However, as awesome as they may look, both displays have their flaws, and one of them is their not-so-ideal color representation. The typical for AMOLED panels pumped up colors are present on the Note 3 as well, while the LG G2 has its color temperature leaning towards the colder side. Nevertheless, these imperfections are so slight that they are likely to go unnoticed by most users and we don't think they spoil the overall user experience at all. Outdoor usability isn't an issue either. Both screens can be operated comfortably even on a sunny day thanks to their high brightness output and low reflectance.

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 360-Degrees View

LG G2 360-Degrees View



62. Gabriel51

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 28, 2014

I have both, pixel density is better on the G2 and I like not having any buttons on the side to accidently push... There is no down side to either

61. Zimakool

Posts: 9; Member since: Nov 06, 2013

I like them both! But my preference was for the note3 I Can't imagine not having my S-pen. It really comes in handy.

56. hashmi.ahmed1

Posts: 2; Member since: Oct 25, 2013

Hello sir, my brother want a very excellent music phone, price doesn't matter, recently my brother bought sony xperia z1, but he didn't liked its music quality too, he just need good music, is there any smartphone with high quality music..?? or he should go for ipods? if yes which one..? which headphones good.? please reply me as soon as possible, waiting for all your valuable suggestions..

58. Lightsout23

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Well music is only as good as its source. If he is REALLY into music you would want to use lossless audio and not mp3 because mp3s are compressed. You lose sound quality with compression. I can't speak for the note 3 but I know the lg g2 supports 24 bit/192kHz lossless audio.

59. JakeLee

Posts: 1021; Member since: Nov 02, 2013

Winamp for Android is capable of handling both flac and alac (lossless formats) The catch is, decoding them with the CPU consumes lots of power, draining the battery like mad. Therefore, he should be looking for a device with hw decoding capabilities of the formats above. I'm not sure if there are any Android phones with hw flac decoder. (Even if an Android phone is capable of playing flac, that doesn't necessarily mean it's done by hw decoder, plus hw alac decoder is not available on other devices than Apple's) iPhone doesn't have a hw flac decoder, but alac is hw decoded, guaranteed. So, a high capacity iPhone would be the best bet for your brother, if he only cares about music.

29. ArcWoolf

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

I upgraded to the G2 a couple of days ago and it's absolutely the best phone I have ever seen. It's large but it's lightweight and thin. It's easy to hold for me and even though the glossy back is a smudge magnet. I really like it a lot.

55. E.S.1

Posts: 308; Member since: Sep 14, 2013

How do you like your LG G2? I'm trying to decide between the Nexus 5 and LG G2. Thank you

60. Pandasaurus12

Posts: 2; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

I bought the Nexus 5 when it was released and used it for 2 weeks and am giving it back and getting the LG G2 (AT&T) on contract for $60 on amazon. I really liked the nexus 5, amazing phone overall, but couldn't justify spending $436 for a phone with an ok camera sub-par battery life. If you are able to upgrade your line with a contract, I would decide between these two phones. If you need an unlocked off-contract, then Nexus is the clear winner.

24. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Both are superb. So 2 GB RAM is enough as all benchmarks are almost same for both.

28. ArcWoolf

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

ram is not for benchmarks. The the graphics processor and the GPU are the one's that are tested.

23. anirudhshirsat97

Posts: 408; Member since: May 24, 2011

Well phonearena, this comparison proves that the Note 3 is comparable, if not better (I think it is) than the G2. Then why is it 9 and the G2 9.4. Isn't that just stupid?

27. ArcWoolf

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

I think the Note 3 is more niche.

57. julaiele

Posts: 12; Member since: Aug 10, 2013

It;s because G2 is better than Note 3 as perceived by the author.

22. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Both of them are almost just the same except for the screen size

19. lyle012809

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 17, 2013

At first i was confused on which to buy, note 3 or g2 coz both phones are excellent..but i chose g2 over note 3 since it is more pockettable and less expensive..i did not regret my choice..g2 is so amazing..very responsive..the ui is okay and is better than twiz..also the battery life is superb..100% charge at 7am and 30% at 7am the next day with normal use and 3g is always on..and i heard a rumor that g2 will skip 4.3 and will be updated to kitkat by december or january..

18. twens

Posts: 1191; Member since: Feb 25, 2012

The best Phones money can buy. These guys are just abnormal phones. Hail G2 and note 3

17. papss unregistered

Had the back of the LG G2 not been so glossy I would have chose it over the note 3 but it wasn't so I chose the note 3.

15. nnjerzy

Posts: 126; Member since: Jun 19, 2013

i prefer the G2

14. poping unregistered

they are both good phones... but imho note3 wins by a million astronomical units... also, note3 is sure to get kk 4.4 update quickly...

26. ArcWoolf

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

That's not true, the Updates are dependent on the manufacturers as well as the phone company you are with. They may very well get it at the same time or a couple days apart.

13. cult67

Posts: 3; Member since: Oct 15, 2013

I spent an hour in the store playing with both phones side by side. Coming from GNEX both were very impressive in speed, battery size and have great displays. I liked the location of the buttons on the G2 and found them easy to use. Both UI’s are new to me and mostly what I was comparing. In the end I went with the Note 3. The added features and bigger display won me over.

12. bnick25

Posts: 38; Member since: May 05, 2013

The last lg g2x phone battery sucked so bad what a step up in the last two years,gotta give lg credit for bringing the game

9. Darth_Muffin

Posts: 18; Member since: Oct 06, 2013

Respect for both LG and Samsung for creating amazing phones. Please take notice that LG is stepping up in the game, which gives us consumers more viable choices. (hmmm.. Maybe LG has even given us headaches in selecting a phone cause the G2 is so good that it went head on and toe to toe with the Galaxy Note 3 without giving in)

7. speckledapple

Posts: 902; Member since: Sep 29, 2011

Not sure I like the way LG handles its smartphones so I would opt for the Note 3 more. But I am waiting for the Note 4.

25. ArcWoolf

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

The g2 is absolutely a top notch phone.

6. sudbury78

Posts: 136; Member since: Jul 12, 2012

I've owned both and now using the note 3 . The battery was definitely better on the g2 and I loved the screen rotation options. Made it look sweet.

5. drdaly

Posts: 78; Member since: Nov 09, 2012

Both are great and almost identical inside but, Lg G2 wins for the perfect size that fits my pocket

10. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Please buy the LG G2 and update us 6 months from now what a cool phone G2 going to be.. I can practically hear the G2 singing,, honey! I am still free, take a chance on me! Yup the erasure cover version.

11. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

16. doejon

Posts: 411; Member since: Jul 31, 2012

no sdcard no removable battery older android version smaler screen if lg had the same size of screen i bet the batterylife would not as good as note 3!

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