1. Cool Jeff's Avatar
    So my LG G4 is with me for more than 2 weeks now and I had the time to root it first with Low Effort then with official unlock.
    Coming from a long history of HTC phones and a short period of S6 I will try to be as honest as possible with my review of the G4.


    Design:





    The LG G4 I bought came with both leather (black) and gold plastic(silver in reality) covers. Of course using the leather cover gives it a more premium look while the ''gold'' one is more heavy duty. I am using the plastic one for days of gym and other sports, while the leather one is for casual days like going to diners, dating...
    Ok even with the leather you won't reach the high levels of premium feeling an HTC M9 can give but it's easily better looking than the S6 back glass and ugly face, also thanks to the fact the battery cover can be opened and replaced you won't have to babycare your phone with additional covers,bumpers...
    I am planning to get the red burgundy color as it's more special and vibrant than both black and brown colors.
    The screen is slightly curved as well as the back, it's good for handy use but the plastic cover will be a little slippery while the leather one will bounce left and right if you put it on a table and try to write a message for example, due to the extra sewing in the middle of the back.
    The sides are very nice with a titanium effect that looks way more durable than the Note 4 chromes.
    So all and all the design is pretty nice and the phone doesn't feel cheap specially with the leather back.



    Screen:



    The G4 sports a big 5.5'' screen with 1440p resolution. This is one of the main reason I switched from the M9, I had sometimes troubles reading fonts with my near sighted vision problems without glasses.
    The screen on G4 is simply splendid! it's more vivid than M9, way better viewing angles and nearly closed amoled blacks. The details are amazing as expected thanks to the 1440p resolution and the high contrast ratio, I have faced zero problem reading text without glasses and playing games are a real pleasure.
    Sunlight visibility is slightly better than M9 which was already very good.
    The advantage of this LCD is that you won't face the amoled known burn-in problems as well as the S6 board traces under sunlight and the infamous pink tint.
    So to conclude, the G4's screen is simply the best smartphone screen of 2015 as it has very high resolution, very high contrast and very good viewing angles without any problem known on other phones.
    Some people faced touchscreen problems on their G4 but they claimed the latest FW updates (10f and newer) fixed it.

    Sound Quality:

    Sound quality and volume are important for me, specially coming from the best in that field HTC M8 and M9. I use my smartphone as audio source for my car stereo pairing it with the HTC stereoclip module (BT to AUX) or AUX, and of course for sports (gym,skiing,...) using my HifIman RE272 or my Sony SBH50.
    Let's begin with the main speaker: it's very loud! Louder than both speakers on the M9, quality wise it's way superior to the Note 4 and louder than S6. The speaker is at the back but because it's curved it won't get muffled on most surfaces.
    Out of the box the G4 has pleasant sound quality over my earphones hifiman RE272, the soundstage is very good but it lacks some bass, as for volume loudness it's perhaps 1-2 steps under what I would like as max volume. Weirdly enough using the BT option, the loudness is way better and even louder than the M9's BT.
    Thanks to Root, using Viper4android boosting volume and equalizer I can finally reach a very satisfactory volume level and the lacking bass is fixed, some roms like Marcosuper7 have already a boosted volume.
    BT in my car is pretty loud and sound quality (aptx + BT 4.0) is as good as AUX, while AUX (with root advantages) will produce even louder sound.
    Conclusion: I am not missing the HTC sound quality and loudness, the G4 just need root and V4A to reach high quality sound and volume.

    User Interface:


    The G4 has Android 5.1 out of the box, the UI is fluid and lagless, the double tap to wake and sleep are very cool, the smartnotice widget is cool (though will cover half your wallpaper), it's much better build than Touchwiz and is closer to HTC Sense logic and added value.
    One of the thing I hated on the S6 was the lack of automatic connecting BT, when I used car apps with the S6 I had to manually pair it everytime I went in my car, with the G4 like with the M9 it will autoconnect to the HTC Stereoclip, added to that I successfully run the HTC Car app on the G4 which is for me the best Car app on Android.
    I can install the Sense 7 port which is as fluid as on M9 but I losed the double tap to sleep feature.
    I am using the HTC gallery app instead of LG stock one as it's also better structured.
    My G4 is an European version NOT branded, so if you encounter lags it's most probably because yours is branded with extra bloatwares
    Conclusion: I was afraid the G4 UI was poor compared to Sense but it's finally very good and I can add some apps from Sense to make it perfect.

    Camera:

    One of the main feature that people liked in the G4 is the camera...and they are not wrong!
    It has a 16mp sensor with f1.8 and OIS meaning great low light photos, compared to M9 low light photos are miles better, they have less obvious noises (the M9 used to have big yellow ones in very low light) and details are much better, compared to S6 it's sometimes as good and sometimes slightly better.
    In daylight the G4 is equal to S6 in Auto mode meaning very good, but like with the M9 you can use RAW and increase much more details.
    The advantage of the G4 is that it has a great dynamic range, so you won't have to use the HDR thingy too much (like on M9).
    Macro shots are fantastic with the G4 and it produces natural bokeh due to the f1.8, though because the focus is very limited on macro shots due again to f1.8 if you don't want the bokeh effect you will have it anyway.
    Lightroom will produce vignette if you open DNG photos directly, so it's better to use the Cornerfix software with the G4 profile given by vincent2167 here: LG G4 Picture Samples - Post #314 - XDA Forums then open it with Lightroom.
    In conclusion the G4 is easily on the top 2 camera of 2015 with the S6

    Some samples:




    Macro, low light no flash:


    Macro, low light flash:


    HDR:


    Battery:

    All 2015 Android flagship phones are suffering from the same not so good battery life, the S6,M9 and G4 will not give you more than 24h battery with normal use and 80 to 100% brightness.
    The M9 I had was better than S6 and the G4 won 30mins more SOT over the M9.
    I had 3.5 hours SOT with M9 and now 4 hours with the G4, but as said before it's not as good as a 2014 Z3 that have over 6 hours SOT.
    In another hand all these 3 2015 phones have the Quick Charging 2.0 feature, meaning much faster charging time.
    The G4 is not only compatible with this feature but it's clearly faster than M9 to charge from 0 to 100%.
    I took nearly 1 hour and 20 minutes on M9 and now 50 minutes on G4 :good::good:
    Of course it's better to alternate between QC 2.0 charger and the normal one for the battery lifetime.
    You can also buy an extra battery as you just have to open the back cover, an advantage you won't have on M8,M9,S6,Note5...

    Conclusion:

    Did I finally made the right choice in swapping my M9 with the G4? Absolutely yes!
    I don't miss the M9 at all, the G4 has a better screen, better camera, on par audio quality (earphones) with root, very nice design thanks to the leather and curvatures, well done UI, no faulty materials (it looks like the touchscreen problem some faced was only a software bug).
    For me I can easily say the G4 is the king of 2015 in Android world (and all smartphones if you hate ios like me).
    The S6 is a very good flagship too but it has build faults like board traces, very slippery back, very fragile glass back...and of course the ugly touchwiz.
    Kko 5, MSFTisMIA, frope01 and 11 others like this.
    09-18-2015 10:01 AM
  2. Shermdiggity's Avatar
    I've had mine for 2 weeks now (unlocked H815) and I agree with everything in your review. Good and balanced.

    I never intend to buy a carrier branded phone again.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    09-18-2015 10:45 AM
  3. Kko 5's Avatar
    Excellent review my friend....I enjoy a brown leather LG G4 H815 european version for 3 months now and I cannot agree more with you on everything you mentioned.
    I am so happy too for my choice....i was coming from all the Samsung flagships and the G4 is my first LG phone....and I am not going back to Samsung...never again.
    IMO the G4 is probably the best phone of the year.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    09-18-2015 02:23 PM
  4. DamianP's Avatar
    Just curious, where did you order your european H815?

    Excellent review my friend....I enjoy a brown leather LG G4 H815 european version for 3 months now and I cannot agree more with you on everything you mentioned.
    I am so happy too for my choice....i was coming from all the Samsung flagships and the G4 is my first LG phone....and I am not going back to Samsung...never again.
    IMO the G4 is probably the best phone of the year.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    09-18-2015 02:27 PM
  5. anon(8938849)'s Avatar
    Only thing I disagree with: that it doesn't feel as premium as the M9. I owned the M9 for 24 hours and one lesson it taught me was that metal does not automatically equal premium. It felt like thin, cheap, flimsy aluminum. A step above a soda can. The way the back and front fit together felt clumsy and poorly thought out. Just bad engineering. There were gaps, sharp edges, I could see light coming from between the display and the frame, the buttons were sunk in and mushy...overall the M9 felt cheap and ghetto to me.
    09-18-2015 09:03 PM
  6. Kko 5's Avatar
    Just curious, where did you order your european H815?
    Good morning friend...I got it directly from our local Cyprus telecom authority here in Cyprus...we are very lucky here because no bloatware at all are being installed.

    Posted from my LG G4
    DamianP likes this.
    09-19-2015 12:04 AM
  7. Cool Jeff's Avatar
    Only thing I disagree with: that it doesn't feel as premium as the M9. I owned the M9 for 24 hours and one lesson it taught me was that metal does not automatically equal premium. It felt like thin, cheap, flimsy aluminum. A step above a soda can. The way the back and front fit together felt clumsy and poorly thought out. Just bad engineering. There were gaps, sharp edges, I could see light coming from between the display and the frame, the buttons were sunk in and mushy...overall the M9 felt cheap and ghetto to me.
    You should see the Note 5 then!
    I passed by a samsung showroom 2 days ago to see how it looks...it was looking VERY cheap! like old nokia thin ''soda can'' metal battery covers, I was nearly gonna puke
    anon(8938849) likes this.
    09-19-2015 05:08 AM
  8. Az Androiddev's Avatar
    Cool, thanks for your review. Will consider switching to the G4 as well (also from Samsung).
    09-19-2015 05:55 AM
  9. RapidTurtle's Avatar
    I also have been using the G4 for about 2 weeks. I agree with everything that you say. Screen is so crisp and clear, camera is awesome, and I also enjoy a lag free experience. I had the Moto X 2014, which has a more stock android experience. I must say, I love LG's touches that they put on android. It really makes it so much more intuitive. I don't understand why some people don't like the skin overlay.
    One other thing I must say is that we live in an area that doesn't get a great AT&T signal, which is one of the reasons we went with Motorola phones last year (great radio) My wife still has her Moto X, and when comparing the signal strength, the G4 hangs right with the MotoX in signal strength. Holding each phone side by side, they both have equal DBM numbers, which was a pleasant surprise to me.
    anon(8938849), redeyss and huntnyc like this.
    09-19-2015 07:13 AM
  10. Cool Jeff's Avatar
    Good morning friend...I got it directly from our local Cyprus telecom authority here in Cyprus...we are very lucky here because no bloatware at all are being installed.

    Posted from my LG G4
    So you are my neighboor! You are in Cyprus and me in Lebanon, the other day I could listen to Klik FM in my car as I was in the Cedars at more than 2000m altitude
    Kko 5 likes this.
    09-19-2015 04:28 PM
  11. Kko 5's Avatar
    So you are my neighboor! You are in Cyprus and me in Lebanon, the other day I could listen to Klik FM in my car as I was in the Cedars at more than 2000m altitude
    Wow...That's cool, Cool Jeff )) very nice to hear that!!!!

    Posted from my LG G4
    Cool Jeff likes this.
    09-20-2015 04:28 AM
  12. D13H4RD2L1V3's Avatar
    My experience is practically the same as yours.

    H815, unlocked.
    09-20-2015 05:13 AM
  13. Cristi Alex's Avatar
    same here great device.we made a good choice

    Posted via the Android Central App
    09-20-2015 05:23 AM
  14. PramodCOB's Avatar
    Superb review... My G4 is running with action launcher and looks really great!

    Posted via the Android Central App
    09-23-2015 08:24 AM
  15. Cool Jeff's Avatar
    I recommend using a BT set of earphones instead of wired, I tried all possible mods to boost the audio quality and volume on the 3.5mm but the G4 is just too weak, though a good BT set is a very good solution, it's louder and quality if on BT 3.0+ is more than adequate
    cache11 likes this.
    01-14-2016 10:12 AM

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