Last year, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 managed to receive universal acclaim for its muscular specs sheet and rich feature set. Months before it, the LG G3 caught technological enthusiasts' attention for having the first Quad-HD resolution display on a mobile device. It's only fair to say that both the Galaxy Note5 and the LG G4 arrived with high expectations, tasked with continuing the strong momentum ignited by their predecessors. This only serves to make the direct comparison between them even more interesting, for both are high-end phablets that are unique in their own special ways, and also showcase how differently the two Korean arch-rivals approach their craft. This will be interesting, so let's have a look now, shall we!


The phablets that show Samsung's and LG's sophisticated understandings for “premium”.

Samsung and LG seemingly have a wildly different understanding of "premium", for the Galaxy Note5 and LG G4 are nothing alike. Samsung opted to study the design patterns of its closest competitor, Apple, and follow the prevailing industry tendency of hi-end smartphones being built out of metal and glass. The result is the Galaxy Note5, a prime example of modern day industrial design with its sleek aluminum lines and glassy sheen. To execute its revamped design vision, Samsung needed to shelve the removable battery and microSD slot, deeming them inessential for the type of customer looking after hi-end smartphones.

The LG G4 is the complete opposite. It puts the "warm, organic touch of leather" against the cold, hard industrial look of present-day flagship smartphones, making for a completely different feel for build quality and design philosophy. This rings true even if you remove the leather from the equation and take a look at the "plain plastic" LG G4 flavor. Without the leather back representing LG's fashion-rooted understanding for luxury, the LG G4 is pure utility, right down to the presence of a removable battery and microSD card slot. Placing it next to the perfectly chiseled cyborg that is the Galaxy Note5 results in a full-blown clash of aesthetics — it's the old versus new, the finely aged versus the modern, the hand-sewn versus the machine-milled.

Truth be told,both phablets have their unique virtues in the design department, and choosing between them is a question of taste, with some practical issues mixed in — can you live without a removable battery and microSD slot? Do you need a stylus, or an IR blaster? Samsung happily omitted the removable battery, microSD slot, and IR blaster from the Note5, citing lack of popular demand, but the LG G4 has all of that - except the S-Pen. Oh, and can you handle the LG G4's back-positioned power and volume keys? Truth be told, you should be able to, but everyone has their preference!

Dimensions-wise, the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 measures a bigger 6.03 x 3.00 x 0.30in (153.2 x 76.1 x 7.6 mm) than the already big LG G4, which stands at 5.86 x 3.00 x 0.39in (148.9 x 76.1 x 9.8 mm). Same goes for weight, as the LG G4 is 5.47 oz (155 g), whereas the Note5 is a beefier 6.03 oz (171 g).

All in all, facing a choice between the Galaxy Note5 and the LG G4, two polar opposites, could tell one a lot about their design tastes. There's no winner here, as the "battle" is merely a question of preferences and needs. If you like a modern, metal and glass aesthetic, and don't mind the lack of removable battery and microSD card, go for the Note5. Otherwise, you can go for something different and more practical with the LG G4.

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung Galaxy Note 5


6.03 x 3 x 0.3 inches

153.2 x 76.1 x 7.6 mm


6.03 oz (171 g)




5.86 x 3 x 0.39 inches

148.9 x 76.1 x 9.8 mm


5.47 oz (155 g)

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung Galaxy Note 5


6.03 x 3 x 0.3 inches

153.2 x 76.1 x 7.6 mm


6.03 oz (171 g)




5.86 x 3 x 0.39 inches

148.9 x 76.1 x 9.8 mm


5.47 oz (155 g)

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


A Super-AMOLED vs IPS LCD fight for the “which has the nicest colors” award.

Once again, we're comparing two entirely different beasts. The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 has a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display, while the LG G4 uses a 5.5-inch IPS LCD panel. They boast the same Quad-HD screen resolution of 1440x2560 pixels, which means both are exceptionally sharp with their high pixel densities (at 518ppi for the Note 5 and 538ppi for the LG G4, respectively) but their properties are still very different.

Right off the bat, we could sense that there's something imbalanced about the LG G4's color reproduction when we placed it next to the Galaxy Note5. That's because the LG G4 has a color temperature of 8031 kelvins, whereas the Note5 boasts a 6722 K color temp, which is much closer to the reference value of 6500 kelvins. This is the point where the mix of red and blue can be considered in balanced proportions. And due to being off that mark, the LG G4 inevitably appears colder, blue-ish.

In terms of brightness levels, the displays are on even ground, but the Galaxy Note5 has a small edge (pun not intended) over the LG G4, as the former goes up to 470 nits maximum brightness, while the latter goes up to 454 nits. Both screens go to 2 nits minimum, which is excellent for bedtime viewing.

Gamma response is another metric that we consider essential for assessing displays. With an average gamma value of 2.09, the Note5's display portrays lighter shades of grey as brighter than they appear in reality, which makes for a sought-after contrast boost, a characteristic of recent Samsung displays. It makes for a livelier, more dynamic screen, at the expense of a slight loss of detail in color highlights. Looking at the LG G4's measurements, its gamma value of 2.24 is actually pretty close to the 2.2 reference, which is always good to have.

Finally, the Delta E rgbcmy and grayscale average values, which we use to estimate color error, give off a good impression about a display's color balance. The Galaxy Note5's screen has a fairly even color balance, at values of 1.32 and 1.94, respectively, and no overly intense exhibiting of the primary colors, save for a tolerable bump in their brighter nuances. At 4.36 (rgbcmy) and 7.28 (grayscale), Delta E color error is significantly greater in the LG G4's display, which is mostly due to under-represented red component. The brighter the image, the more red disappears to blue and green's advantage. This compromises color balance and results in a blue-green color tint.

With everything taken into account, the Galaxy Note5's bigger, brighter, and more color-accurate Super AMOLED screen makes for a clear win over the LG G4's tolerable, but problematic IPS LCD panel.



28. silverangel1974

Posts: 1; Member since: Sep 13, 2015

love the LG G4

26. bubbadoes

Posts: 1225; Member since: May 03, 2012

Samsung opted to study the design patterns of its closest competitor, Apple, and follow the prevailing industry tendency of hi-end smartphones. like i always said

25. jeroome86

Posts: 2314; Member since: Apr 12, 2012

After watching co worker cuss his G4 daily. Over heats and throttles causing lag. Battery life about the same as G3 which was very poor. Couldn't imagine buying this over a Note 5. My current Note 3 has best battery life I've known for a smart phone. It has decreased some what with time. But still decent.

27. Trex95

Posts: 2384; Member since: Mar 03, 2013

Note 5 a and edge plus better in every single way. But the yellowish white balance of the camera the most thing I hate about S6, S6 edge, Note 5 and edge plus, yes the add fully munaul mode to note 5 and edge plus same as G4 manual mode inculding ROW, but white balance even with kelvin colors tempture still giving result of a tad bluesih white.

19. darkkjedii

Posts: 31797; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Stop running these phones up against the beautiful beast. The only comparison to the Note 5 is a Note 5 of a different color.

23. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 593; Member since: May 26, 2011

Too bad they didn't offer a champagne color version of the Note 5.

24. Trex95

Posts: 2384; Member since: Mar 03, 2013

I do prefer note 5 over G4 myself. But I noticed that Samsung copied the same camera features of G4 row and Calvin white balance! Did you noticed that in your note 5 camera, plus the white balance of the note 5 camera still not good especially at low light scenes looks yellowish I don't know why Samsung didn't fix this issue since S6.

13. davidsic

Posts: 5; Member since: Aug 28, 2015

Hello, why did not used 16mp resolution (16:9) on the G4 ? You used 4:3 12mp !?

12. ekholbrook

Posts: 8; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

I was torn between upgrading my Note 3 to a Note 4 or wait for the 5. After reading that the 5 was basically using the same camera in the S6, which i wasn't impressed with (nor was I impressed with the Note4 particularly) I went with the LG G4. I don't have a Note 5 to test obviously but I did rack it up against a friends 6 in many comparisions and it blows away the S6. Low light. Bright light. I mean, what other phone can you set a shutter speed of 1/2 a second, dial back the ISO, and actually get a clear shot at night? It is insanely fast camera to point and shot. One other thing that drove me nuts with recent Samsung's running 5.0 or 5.1 was the lag between the camera shot, and opening the gallery, in some cases taking 2, 3 seconds or more. UGH. The last consideration for me was the price. I have tmobile, no "contract" and the Note 5 would cost around $30 a month on a payment plan. The LG4 is $19. That translates into close to $240 regardless of how many months to take to pay it off. The one thing I DO NOT like with the LG g4 is the screen sensitivity. My note 3 had a very light touch especially for typing. The LG G4, I feel like I skip letters or things don't immediately register when I press unless I put a little more effort into it. So that kinda irritates me. I also don't like the back side buttons. Pain in the A$$ when driving and you can't "Feel" the side of the phone to lower/raise the volume. And lastly, the bottom side ear phone jack just annoys me as well. Not sure why, but it just feels like when plugged in, te cable is always in the way or like when plugged into my dashboard cable in the car, turns the phone to face the dash. So to me it's a design flaw. Speed of UI? Very fast. Storage? Fantastic and that was the last remaining killer thing I decided I could not get a Note. 32 gigs is pathetic and 64 gigs would be too expensive. For $29 above the cost of the base phone, I instead of 96 gigs of storage (so far) on my LG with the 32 gigs inside and 64gig card. And there's the battery thing. If it's like my Note 3, which got killer battery life for about 9 months (avg 13 hours on my use), but ended up at 7, I want that removable battery so I can replace. Whatever battery life the Note 5 gets new, it will get about 3/4 of that in a few months and 1/2 of that in about a year, halfway through many people's contract.

11. BobbyBustєr

Posts: 11; Member since: Aug 27, 2015

I prefer Samsung products.

18. javy108

Posts: 1004; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

What about No one makes blah blah blah?

22. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 593; Member since: May 26, 2011

In the past, I also preferred Samsung products.

10. Plutonium239

Posts: 1262; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

Also, you forgot to mention that if you drop the note 5, you are likely to crack the glass back.

9. Cheezwiz

Posts: 500; Member since: Dec 29, 2014

do the camspeed scores have anything to do with the Software or are they mostly a representation of the SoC being used? I'm curious for example, if the LG G4 is faster/slower than the Moto X Play or Style that each have the same SD808 SoC.

8. bubbadoes

Posts: 1225; Member since: May 03, 2012

give me G4 any day.

7. xsoft7

Posts: 27; Member since: Dec 12, 2013

you forgot to add LG G4 is half the price of Note 5, in most places. 32GB note 770$ and for 64GB 1100$. most (smart) people will buy the 64, as the 32 is not all, you'll have much less. 2) it's much cheaper =easier to repair a LG G4, you just need 2 hands, 1 brain, 1 screwdriver.

14. iushnt

Posts: 3182; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

What did I just read?

6. rwolf1984

Posts: 536; Member since: Jun 06, 2009

LG G2 and G3 were phenominal. I had high hopes for the G4, but so far every LG G4 I've had has been plagued with issues. Randomly powering off and unable to turn on even though the battery is on full charge. Leather backs are a joke as they are not durable at all. I have a baseball glove from 20 years ago that has held up better than the few months of use I got out of my G4. Luckily, Sprint will buy me out of my contract so I can get a Note 5.

5. xsoft7

Posts: 27; Member since: Dec 12, 2013

you forgot to add LG G4 is half the price of Note 5, in most places. 32GB from amazon retails for 460$

4. DroidDaddyo

Posts: 35; Member since: Jan 18, 2015

I loved my G3 and G4 but the Note 5 made me switch back to Samsung. Performance wise, the Note 5 felt much faster than my G4. The extra weight and thickness of the phone took some getting used to, but it's ok. The speaker's not quite as nice as the G4's but after tweaking the equalizer settings in Google Music it's satisfactory. Nothing like having front facing speaker(s) though. And the fingerprint sensor is just super fast. Noticeably faster than the iphone 6 plus I compared it to (I'm sure the 6s will be faster than the 6 though.)

21. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 593; Member since: May 26, 2011

I'm sorry to hear that.

3. athos07m

Posts: 137; Member since: Apr 22, 2012

Please give us the 360 of the Note5, so we can spin these side-by-side :)

1. Zack_2014

Posts: 677; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

Marginally better camera?

2. shaineql

Posts: 522; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

G4 may have a tiny bit better camera when taking steady shots , but in video recording all samsung devices are superb vs any other smartphone.

15. QWERTYphone

Posts: 654; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

The LG G4 is the ONLY choice due to removable battery, SD, and durable build. The S6/Note5 are FAILURES.

16. ChocolatePants

Posts: 5; Member since: Feb 27, 2014

Sales strongly suggests otherwise

17. javy108

Posts: 1004; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

Sales is not only quality of product, is also about propaganda and all of the marketing things....

20. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 593; Member since: May 26, 2011

Samsung is doing there best to sweeten the pot by working with carriers to offer promotions such as 1 year of Netflix, $100 of Google Play credit, a free Samsung Tab 4, etc. These promotional offers help encourage some consumers to purchase the Samsung Galaxy Note 5. On the flip side carriers are also encouraged to team up with Samsung to provide these offers and help promote the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 because it generally leads to device payment plans that raise consumer monthly bills for the carrier. Once these promotional offers go away, then we'll get to see what Samsung is truly doing in terms of sales.

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