LG hasn’t had a very worthy competitor for Samsung’s, HTC’s or even Motorola’s high-end smartphone offerings in a while, but the newly unveiled Optimus G might have an ace or two up its sleeve to heat up the battle.

If it wasn’t already obvious LG was counting on the new 4.7-inch “beast” to turn the tables for the company in the Android world, the huge marketing efforts of the past couple of weeks should make that very clear. We’ve seen the phone teased, unveiled, commented upon and once again unveiled, not to mention that we’re just about certain it will also be on display at the New York City press event tomorrow.

But is the hype built artificially or does LG really have something special to challenge the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 2 or HTC One X? While it’s a bit early to fully answer that question, some early benchmark results show the Optimus G as very capable of taking on pretty much anyone in terms of raw speed, mostly due to the featuring of a Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU. Then again, there seem to be some software kinks that need to be ironed out by LG soon in order for the G to show off its true potential right off the bat.

AnandTech benchmarks

As usual, one of the first websites that gets one-on-one time with a newly unveiled phone is AnandTech, which took the Optimus G for a quick spin through six benchmark tests.

The results, while all in all satisfying, point out to some sort of a mysterious browsing issue, most likely caused by LG’s custom software tweaks to Android 4.0 ICS. You can see the G trailing behind the Lava Xolo X900(!), Galaxy S3 or HTC One X in the SunSpider Javascript test for stock browsers, while the BrowserMark results are even more terrible for LG’s latest high-end effort, heavily beaten not only by the GS3 or One X, but again by the Xolo X900 and even by the Optimus 4X HD. That’s bad, LG, and you should feel bad!

The Linpack (single-threaded and multi-threaded) and GLBenchmark 2.5 tests save the day for the Optimus G, which comes on top against all major competitors. Linpack is a good indicator of FP performance, memory bandwidth, as well as single and multi-core scaling, while GLBenchmark 2.5 Egypt HD and Egypt Classic show off exactly how great the new Adreno 320 GPU is.

GSM Arena benchmarks

The guys at GSM Arena only had the time of putting the Optimus G through four tests, two of which were already done by AnandTech. (Un)surprisingly, the two online publications reported slightly different scores in Linpack and Sunspider, though the bottom line remains that the G performs extraordinary in multi-core speed, while in terms of browsing, things are far from perfect.

The Optimus G came on top with ease in Benchmark Pi and Quadrant, leaving the One X and Galaxy S3 in the dust. The first of the two tests focuses only on CPU speed, while the second is a much more thorough tool that also measures memory speed, GPU power, and I/O (input/output).

Phone Arena benchmarks

Although they only had three benchmark tests to show off, the guys at Phone Arena focused on probably the most popular and well-known performance measuring tools. The Optimus G scored a whopping 7,559 in Quadrant (around 2,000 points ahead of the HTC One X or Samsung Galaxy S3), over 11,000 in AnTuTu, and 60 frames per second in NenaMark.

The Quadrant score is certainly impressive and makes us more than excited about the S4 Pro CPU’s potential, but the AnTuTu and NenaMark results are not that great. We’ve seen the Galaxy Note 2 score 13,500 in AnTuTu a while back (with unfinished software even), while the GS3 was spotted several times at around 58 or even 60 fps in NenaMark.


So, what’s the bottom line, you might ask. Well, as always, there’s not a very clear conclusion that can be drawn from such early benchmarks, other than the Optimus G looks very promising, but far from perfect. It’s obvious LG needs to do something about that browsing issue fast, but at the same time it’s clear the S4 Pro chip has far more “juice” in it than other CPUs powering high-end gadgets.

It remains to be seen how will the G perform in real life (which is far more important than any benchmark results), but also how will LG handle other key things about the phone aside from the raw speed, including timing of software updates and pricing.

Does LG really have a shot in challenging Samsung or HTC with the Optimus G? Is speed enough to make or break a phone?