LG V30: the full review 2020

    LG V30: the full test

    For the first time, LG launched a high-end large format model at the end of the year. The brand thus adopts a calendar similar to those of Samsung – with its Galaxy Note 8 – and Huawei – with its Mate 10 Pro. The LG V30 is equipped with a 6-inch OLED edge-to-edge display, a Snapdragon 835 processor with 4 GB of RAM (64 GB of storage) and a dual photo module. It is launched at 899 euros.

    LG V30

    The most beautiful smartphone on the market?

    The LG G6 was the first 18: 9 format smartphone to hit the UK’s market. Despite its identical proportions, the V30 benefits from a very different design, with a less metallic appearance. The screen is framed by thin black bands and four rounded corners. From the front, the device looks like the Samsung Galaxy S8 +, the curved panel less. In the absence of facial recognition or iris, the number of sensors present is less important. On the front, the two most identifiable elements are the front photo sensor (5 Mpix) and the earpiece.

    LG V30

    The LG V30 takes over from the Samsung Galaxy S8 + and Galaxy Note 8 at the back. The dual photo module is framed by a long ellipse, beneath which the fingerprint sensor is placed. While Samsung has opted for a very uncomfortable location, LG’s biometric recognition system falls perfectly under the finger. It’s better, as it’s also the power button.

    LG V30

    The USB Type-C socket is on the lower edge. The jack is located on the upper edge. Weighing 158 grams and 7.3 mm thick, the V30 is very comfortable to handle. Despite its similarities to the S8, the LG case is even more successful. In our eyes, the LG V30 is one of the most beautiful smartphones in our lab.

    An azure blue screen

    In recent weeks, the screens manufactured by LG have been talked about. And not really good. The tiles produced by the South Korean are fitted to Google’s Pixel 2 XL, which suffered from screen burns shortly after it was launched on the market. The lack of fidelity of their colors has also been criticized by our American colleagues. Our screen reviews confirm these faults, while allowing us to put them into perspective.

    LG V30

    As we explained in our paper dedicated to the display quality of the V30, the colorimetry of its screen is perfectible with an average Delta E 2000 of 5.25, against 4.13 for the Samsung Galaxy S8 and 2.93 for the iPhone X. In question, a predominance of blue which intensifies considerably when the device is tilted. A drift against which the user unfortunately cannot do much.

    However, LG allows you to play on the screen tones in the settings. The “Best for Movies” mode allows you to drop the Delta E to 3.95, for example, by displaying warmer colors. As long as we are in front of the smartphone, the improvement is noticeable.

    LG V30

    Finally, the V30’s OLED panel is sufficiently bright (477 cd / m²), perfectly contrasted and benefits from a resolution of 537 ppi – 2880 x 1440 pixels for a diagonal of 6 inches. At 899 euros, we could demand a display quality closer to perfection. But the flaws in the V30’s screen – essentially the predominance of blue when the smartphone is tilted – will not be eliminative for the vast majority of users.

    No Android Oreo

    The LG overlay is faithful to what the manufacturer has been offering for several years. It is refined, despite the presence of twenty applications installed natively (excluding the Google suite). By default, the interface has no application drawer. These accumulate on the various home pages, as on iOS. It is nevertheless possible to activate the function to find a more familiar environment.

    The main new software is the arrival of a floating bar, which seems to respond to the functions related to curved screens from Samsung. Unfortunately, its possibilities are reduced. In most cases, it only gives access to a reduced list of shortcuts – front camera, note taking or calendar. Too gimmicky to really improve the user experience.

    LG V30

    We always appreciate certain specificities of LG smartphones such as the power button / fingerprint sensor on the back, associated with a “double tapping” function to wake up the screen, very useful when the smartphone is placed on a desk. . The “Always-on display” function allows you to display the time and notifications on the screen off. Alas, the LG V30 comes with Android Nougat. At 500 euros, this would have been a default. At 900 euros, it’s a mistake, especially with a competitor like the Huawei Mate 10 Pro, sold for 100 euros less, on Android Oreo.

    LG V30

    A really useful Quad DAC?

    LG also communicates on the acoustic performance of its device. The brand relies on the presence of a Quad DAC, of ​​which the European versions of the G6 had been deprived. Its overlay allows to activate or not this component and thus to evaluate its interest. Combined with a Bose QuietComfort 35 headset connected by wire, the V30 reproduced an excellent sound. By deactivating the Quad DAC, the sound delivered was… excellent. Because it is both the weakness and the quality of the mobile: if its audio capabilities are excellent, they do not really stand out from those of the best on the market.

    Power and autonomy at the rendezvous

    With a processor like the Snapdragon 835, the LG V30 is logically one of the most powerful devices. But as we can see on the table below, it does not dominate all its rivals, at least in terms of benchmarks. The smartphone is behind compared to the iPhone X, Huawei Mate 10 Pro, OnePlus 5T and Samsung Galaxy S8.

    But we should not trust only this classification, whose deviations are sometimes infinitesimal. In use, the responsiveness of the LG V30 is excellent, despite its Quad HD + definition – the smartphone can also be used in Full HD + even if it is not set by default in this definition. In the game, fluidity is also very good. It even seemed to us slightly better than on our Samsung Galaxy S8 while remaining lower than that of OnePlus 5T, our benchmark under Android.

    LG V30

    The 3,300 mAh battery is not compromised by the V30’s solid configuration. During our versatile autonomy review, it went out after 13:29. A pretty feat. In fact, the autonomy of the smartphone varies a lot from day to day, depending on the user’s requests. In classic use, it will be easy to end the day. If you spend long hours taking photos (a particularly energy-consuming use), you will need to plan a recharging break during the afternoon.

    An always remarkable photo offer

    Like the G series terminals, the V30 is equipped with a double photo module, with a wide angle focal (f / 1.6, 16 Mpix) and a very wide angle focal (f / 1.9, 13 Mpix). At the moment, only Asus has taken up the idea on its own, with the Zenfone 4. In the wake of Apple, the majority of manufacturers are betting more on portrait mode. However, using your smartphone to capture landscapes is just as common, if not more. We can only approve of LG’s strategy.

    See photos taken with the LG V30 in high definition

    Photo taken with the LG V30

    The image quality is also there, in most conditions. In full sun, the sharpness is excellent and the colors realistic. The V30 is not perfect, however. First, there is a greater smoothness than on the G6, resulting in a slight loss of detail. If you only plan to display your photos on Facebook and Instagram, know that your friends will see no difference. On the other hand, LG is not yet able to offer the same speed of shooting as the best, namely Samsung and Apple.

    Photo taken with the LG V30

    In low light, boosting smoothing is more problematic. The loss in detail is more noticeable and comes with a lower level of exposure than with the G6. Again, the result is at the height of a high-end product, but we would have liked to see slight progress rather than a slight regression. It is hoped that software updates will help correct this.

    Photo taken with the LG V30
    Photo taken with the LG V30

    The contribution of the second very wide angle lens is undeniable. We appreciated being able to play between two points of view of the same scene. The image quality is lower than that of the first sensor – especially in low light – and the tones tend to turn red. A quick pass through a photo editing app provides much more balanced shots. In video, the LG V30 is perhaps the best currently. Even in Full HD, the level of detail is excellent, the colors are faithful and the stabilization exemplary.


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