What used to be Samsung’s stomping grounds is now being taken over by LG. In the absence of the Note 8, which launched in New York earlier this month, the talk of IFA 2017 is, without doubt, the new LG V30.
LG V30 hands on – a mobile photography powerhouse
We had the opportunity to use the LG V30 for several days ahead of its launch in Berlin this week, and one question we wanted to answer during this time was “How good is the V30 compared to the LG G6?”
Is the V30 LG’s real 2017 flagship? Is it worth shelling out for the V30 if you already own the relatively new LG G6? Let’s take a look in our LG V30 vs LG G6 comparison!
LG V30 vs LG G6: Design
First off, let’s talk size, and we have to give it to LG here for making the 6-inch V30 a few grams lighter than the 5.7-inch G6.
Gone is the bulkiness of the V20. At 158 grams, the V30 is incredibly light for a 6-inch device, and it also feels very light and thin, thanks to the rounded edges of the screen and the glass back.
Whereas the LG V30’s sides are curved and smooth, the G6 has an “edginess” to it that you may or may not enjoy personally. The flat edges definitely make it grippier, which is not a bad quality to have on a glass-made phone.
Kudos to LG - the V30 is incredibly light for a 6-inch device
Both phones feature the curved screen corners that have come into fashion this year, but the G6 feels much flatter compared to the V30. Indeed, the V30 looks and feels a bit like the Galaxy S8 Plus, even if it doesn’t have the curved edges of the Samsung flagship.
As you’d expect, the V30 and the G6 share some design similarities. The dual cameras and the circular fingerprint sensor stand out on the back, and the V30 features the same shiny glass construction as the G6.
Even if it’s not fully metallic anymore, the V30 is said to be highly resilient to shocks, as the phone is certified to the MIL-STD-810G standard. Still, drop it at your own risk.
LG V30 vs LG G6: Specs and features
Both phones have 18:9 FullVision displays, which make them much more portable than their diagonal size would otherwise suggest.
The underlying technology is different however, as LG switched from LCD to plastic-based OLED on the V30. That’s a first for LG’s flagship lineup, if you don’t count the G Flex experiment.
Go in depth: What’s the difference between P-OLED and AMOLED?
OLED is the future of high-end smartphones and LG has poured billions into R&D and manufacturing facilities to catch up with Samsung.
The switch offers clear benefits on the LG V30, which is brighter than the G6 and also features a slightly more pleasant color balance. While the difference between the LCD G6 and the OLED V30 is not jarring, the traditional strengths of OLED shine through, with better contrast and a more vibrant color palette.
Specs-wise, the V30 is on par with competitors
While the G6 was somehow behind the curve in the specs department, due to the use of a Snapdragon 821 processor, the V30 is on par with competitors, with Snapdragon 835. There’s also 4GB of RAM and either 64GB or 128GB of expandable storage space.
LG’s decision to make certain features of the G6 exclusive to some markets caused confusion and even frustration among customers. Fortunately, that’s not the case with the V30: features like wireless charging and the Quad DAC are available globally this time around.
Audio has always been a big part of the V series experience, and that’s continued on the V30, which gets the aforementioned Quad DAC, a set of digital filters, audio presets, and the ability to use the phone receiver as an extra microphone to improve recordings.
More details: Full LG V30 specs – a true multimedia machine
The battery size is the same on both phones at 3,300 mAh, though the superior processor and different screen tech could tip the scales in favor of the V30 in terms of actual battery life. Quick charging and water resistance are two other features that are making a return on the LG V30.
Software is pretty similar on the V30 and the G6, with both phones running Android 7.1 Nougat. You do get an interesting update in the security department: besides facial recognition, which the LG G6 got via a software update this summer, the V30 also comes with voice recognition. You can set basically any voice command to unlock the phone hands-free. It’s not the fastest way to unlock your device, but it still might come in handy in certain situations.
The LG V30 also supports Daydream VR, made possible by the low refresh rates of its OLED screen. Another notable addition is the Floating Bar, which can be invoked with a tap on the side of the screen. If you miss the shortcuts from the secondary screen of the V20, this small addition could provide a little solace.
LG V30 vs LG G6: Camera
Which brings us to the camera capabilities, an area where the LG V30 should excel, at least on paper.
The V30 comes with two cameras on the back, a 16MP standard angle one, and a 13MP wide angle, for those times when you need to capture a wider section of a scene. The standard angle lens is extremely bright, at f/1.6, which is the largest aperture of any smartphone on the market. LG also used a glass lens for this camera, as opposed to the plastic lenses you typically find on smartphones. Thanks to this, more light can reach the sensor, resulting in better image quality.
The wide-angle lens has been improved in order to reduce the edge distortion that can occur when shooting in the wide mode.
There’s a bevy of software features to help mobile shutterbugs get the most out of their hardware. Videographers will appreciate the Cine Video mode, which color grades footage to add more depth and to extract more detail from really dark or really bright areas of the image. Users can pick one of the 15 different Cine Video presets to infuse their videos with a certain atmosphere, like Romantic Comedy or Summer Blockbuster.
Meanwhile Point Zoom lets you smoothly zoom in on specific parts of a scene, while Cinelog should make on-device post-processing a little bit easier. And, for static imaging, there’s Graphy, which lets you load up camera settings used by professional photographers.
The G6 on the other hand is not far behind, with its dual 13MP f/1.8 cameras, but if you’re looking for bells and whistles, it’s clear that the V30 offers a more well-rounded experience.
The V30 offers the superior experience, hands-down
There you have it, our look at the LG V30 vs LG G6. It should be clear to anyone looking at these two devices, that the V30 offers the superior experience. It just has more features and better specs, and it’s arguably a nicer-looking phone than the LG G6. It took them a while, but it looks like LG has finally hit gold. Let’s just hope customers will reward them by opening up their wallets.
The competition: Samsung Galaxy Note 8 hands-on
That said, the G6 remains attractive, especially when you look at its price tag, which has gone down significantly since its release six months ago.
Let us know your opinions of the LG V30 and how it compares to the LG G6, and stay tuned for more coverage from IFA 2017!