With its technology and a mobile world vision, LG offers us a real reboot of its high-end. It was definitely the biggest surprise of the Mobile World Congress 2016. The metal makes its arrival and the smartphone benefits from an ultra-powerful processor. But two innovations make the G5 a bit special: its modular appearance on the one hand and a second photo sensor wide angle at 135 degrees on the other hand. We can even say that the G5’s release has revolutionized the concept of multiple mobiles that LG has sold us; it differentiates itself from all other smartphones. It is ambitious, promising and as we dare to call it a “photophone” by excellence.
At first sight, the structure appears more solid. Bu when we carefully assessed the new G5 device, we had an average finish lacking a lot, especially when it comes to the materials used. The final model seems to have corrected the shot a bit, with a slightly more dense metal structure. The slight curvature of the top on the front is pleasing to the eye and the lines of the G5 are generally pleasant.
The grip is safe, although there are some inconveniences on the edges, with joins too pronounced and which can slightly hinder the palm.
However, we find that the fingerprint reader is well positioned; it takes place on the rear of the device, within the main physical button, to fall under the index finger. Its operation is ultra-fast and optimal. It is possible to wake the mobile by this way just by placing the finger on the surface of the reader. It should be noted that this design break, guided by the modular and operated by LG in relation to the G3 and G4 which shared common lines, switches the volume keys from the back to the left edge, while the dual photo module induces a small protuberance.
On the heater side, you can rent a beautiful optimization for almost all use of the G5, as the product never heats or very little.
Attention, however, the top-of-the-range tacitly involves impeccable finishes and this is probably where the biggest questions arise about the structure of the G5. To express the modularity of his last baby, LG opts for a slide system on the lower segment of the device, with a very discreet push button on the right edge of the smartphone to release the segment.
In summary, a clear statement can be made: if LG had not gone on such a venture, with modules, and had designed a more classic progeny like the G4, the new phone would probably have held a near perfect smartphone in finishing, but it was a risk to take for LG to showcase its ability to produce singular high-end devices.
The 5.5-inch WQHD screen on the G4 goes to a size of 5.3 inches, with a diagonal of 13.4 cm. The very high definition remains unchanged on the new G5 (2,560 x 1,440 pixels) and since the screen size was revised downwards, it offers now a greater display finesse with a density of 555 pixels per inch. Therefore this will ensure an excellent reading comfort for any type of content. Another good point, the average contrast of the slab, Here in IPS-NEO LCD technology, is the most robust we have seen so far on mobile LCD, with an average of 1,900 to 2,100: 1 depending on the brightness.
The G5 starts to disappoint on its maximum brightness of 438 cd / m2 (against 540 cd / m2 on the G4) and its light reflection rate of the panel 13% (when the best mobiles are less than 8%). Outside, the G5 can sometimes show limitations in terms of legibility.
The color rendering is also indented. Without being bad, the colorimetry, compared to last year, is less balanced and got knocked out by iPhone 6s Plus, Galaxy S6 and even the HTC 10 which almost perfect in the field. Worse, the temperature of the colors borders the correctional with more than 9 000 Kelvin at the probe and especially a bluish drift of the screen that is noticed. Too bad that LG still does not propose correction of the color profile, unlike Samsung.
On the other hand, the display in landscape mode offers a good user experience. You can, therefore, watch a video or take pictures in widescreen with its polarized sunglasses without having to remove them.
For the inside, LG opts for the latest high-end Qualcomm chip, the Snapdragon 820 and its 4-core Kryo core clocked at 2.15 GHz and accompanied by a 4 GB RAM. This SoC is different in many points compared to the Exynos that equips the Samsung Galaxy S7. Nevertheless, we can find some similarities such as the support of the RAM memory LPDDR4 at 1800 MHz as well as the 14 nm (14LPP) etching of Samsung.
The storage capacity is up to 32 GB, expandable via the addition of a microSD card. When it comes to connectivity we have Wi-Fi a / b / g / n / AC, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS + GLONASS and NFC provide wireless connectivity, while the mobile network is 4G LTE Category 9 compatible (up to 600 Mbps maximum). And let’s not forget the magnificent fingerprint reader that makes its appearance for the first time on an LG “G”.
In practice, it is a smartphone with a great fluidity, impossible to feel latency in the transitions of the passage from one app to another. Unlike the handheld model at the Mobile World Congress, heating is very controlled even when the modem, display, and CPU are at full power. And for good reason, since in just a few seconds, the two Kryo cores running at 2.15 GHz take their cruising speed at 1.4 GHz and display almost disconcerting stability, supporting most of the CPU load required. The other two cores (whose maximum clock frequency is limited to 1.6 GHz) oscillate more regularly between approximately 0.30 and 1.30 GHz.
As for the interface, it’s Android 6.0 Marshmallow that plays the operating systems and the Google OS gets covered with the Optimus UX home interface.
We can say that for its new G5, LG seems to have opted for a balance between sufficient performance and good heat dissipation, which is why the phone only heats up very little.
Now you’re probably wondering about what animates everything. It’s a removable battery with a capacity of 2,800 mAh. The latter does not seem capable of keeping the distance from the competition since it supports the power of growing technical platforms and offers similar or even greater autonomy than previous generations. To be fair the G5 does not yet rise to the level of endurance proposed by the last two sprouts of Samsung (Samsung GS7 and GS7 edge), but still surpasses the G4, which had a larger capacity of the accumulator.
It is thus proportional to almost one hour of autonomy of the GS7, with a functioning of 12:45, a little more than a solid day and a half of good and loyal services. There is no doubt that a measured use can keep it until the evening of the second day especially with the module photo where the autonomy is increased to 4000 mAh.
Since 2016 seems to be the year of innovative photo phony concepts (Dual AF Pixel at Samsung, new UltraPixel at HTC, dual black and white/color module for Huawei, etc.), LG joyfully participates in the party with a dual module system in stabilized optics. None of them help the other in his office since each is independent and diametrically opposed to use: the first, classical, proposes 16 Megapixels; the second, in ultra-wide-angle, goes down to 8 Megapixels. You can capture your everyday photos on the first, and shoot beautiful landscapes full of amplitude or extreme close-ups with the second.
The images proposed by the G5 are among the best to date in the market. In fact, it’s a little bit faster than the last iPhone, but it’s a little bit faster than the GS7 in terms of overall reactivity (launch, autofocus, and trigger). There is a real know-how in the management of the background blur on the portraits and an excellent picture rendering on the shots. On the other hand, LG forces this year a little too much on the vibrant color, where the G4 remained more neutral and more loyal. No doubt that the worshipers of embellished photos will find a companion of choice, but you are warned.
In low light, the G5 is effective, but not necessarily better than the G4. The latter knew to be precise and to catch a lot of light, where the G5 shows a less competence but managed to have a more pronounced contrast and a smoothing vibe.