My LG V20 review

Laura Knotek

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I had been using a Moto X Pure Edition since October 2015. It was on its way out early August 2017, so I needed a new phone. I’ve only used Moto Android phones, and never had an LG phone. However, when I searched to see what was available, the LG V20 met my needs the best, and I purchased an unlocked model US 996 from Amazon on 12 August 2017.

The reasons I opted for the V20 were:

  • Quad DAC--I love listening to music and have high impedance headphones. The V20 does a phenomenal job driving my headphones. In fact the built-in DAC sounds better than using my external FiiO Q1 with other phones.
  • Camera--I enjoy taking pictures, and I’m impressed with the camera quality.The dual cameras are a nice touch, especially when I want to use the wide-angle. The manual camera controls are useful and provide more features for tweaking settings to get better shots. In addition to using the stock camera, I’ve installed the Google Camera apk, which has improved low-light pictures.
  • Removable battery--The battery was one thing failing on my old MXPE. Although I typically don’t need to swap batteries throughout the day, the ability to do so if needed on the V20 is a plus. I ordered the battery charging kit that includes an external battery charger, spare battery, and a case to carry a spare battery.
  • Size and form factor--I like large phones with 5.7” screens. I also prefer screens that are not curved, since I use tempered glass screen protectors. Many other phones are either too small, have large bezels, or don’t put the fingerprint scanner in a location where I like it. Having the fingerprint scanner on the back makes the V20 extremely easy for me to use.

Now that I’ve used the V20 for three weeks, I’ve found that I really like it. The battery lasts longer on the V20 than it did on the MXPE when the MXPE was brand new. I haven’t needed to use battery saver or adjust screen brightness manually to a lower level to conserve battery. Auto brightness works fine, and I’ve never had the battery get lower than 40% during a day of use. It is refreshing to have a phone that doesn’t require babysitting the battery to get through the day.

Connectivity is excellent. I haven’t had any issues with signal strength, WiFi, Bluetooth in my car. Call quality is excellent, whether using the speaker, speakerphone, or Bluetooth in the car. Streaming Spotify in the car has excellent sound quality as well.

I’m using Nova Launcher Prime, as I’ve done with every single Android device I’ve owned, and Nova Launcher Prime works well with the LG second screen.

I have not noticed any issues with apps force closing even when running multiple apps in the background. There is no lag when touching the screen using any apps.

I haven’t used the camera extensively so far, since I haven’t had a chance to get out and about to see some interesting subjects to photograph. However, I love the manual camera controls from what I have used. The auto camera isn’t anything special, albeit, it’s better than what I had on the MXPE. However, from the few examples of manual shooting I’ve done, I like the manual camera.

All in all, I’m happy with the V20 and feel that it is a nice upgrade from my previous MXPE.

Thanks for reading.

 

ffejjj

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I had been using a Moto X Pure Edition since October 2015. It was on its way out early August 2017, so I needed a new phone. I’ve only used Moto Android phones, and never had an LG phone. However, when I searched to see what was available, the LG V20 met my needs the best, and I purchased an unlocked model US 996 from Amazon on 12 August 2017.

The reasons I opted for the V20 were:

  • Quad DAC--I love listening to music and have high impedance headphones. The V20 does a phenomenal job driving my headphones. In fact the built-in DAC sounds better than using my external FiiO Q1 with other phones.
  • Camera--I enjoy taking pictures, and I’m impressed with the camera quality.The dual cameras are a nice touch, especially when I want to use the wide-angle. The manual camera controls are useful and provide more features for tweaking settings to get better shots. In addition to using the stock camera, I’ve installed the Google Camera apk, which has improved low-light pictures.
  • Removable battery--The battery was one thing failing on my old MXPE. Although I typically don’t need to swap batteries throughout the day, the ability to do so if needed on the V20 is a plus. I ordered the battery charging kit that includes an external battery charger, spare battery, and a case to carry a spare battery.
  • Size and form factor--I like large phones with 5.7” screens. I also prefer screens that are not curved, since I use tempered glass screen protectors. Many other phones are either too small, have large bezels, or don’t put the fingerprint scanner in a location where I like it. Having the fingerprint scanner on the back makes the V20 extremely easy for me to use.

Now that I’ve used the V20 for three weeks, I’ve found that I really like it. The battery lasts longer on the V20 than it did on the MXPE when the MXPE was brand new. I haven’t needed to use battery saver or adjust screen brightness manually to a lower level to conserve battery. Auto brightness works fine, and I’ve never had the battery get lower than 40% during a day of use. It is refreshing to have a phone that doesn’t require babysitting the battery to get through the day.

Connectivity is excellent. I haven’t had any issues with signal strength, WiFi, Bluetooth in my car. Call quality is excellent, whether using the speaker, speakerphone, or Bluetooth in the car. Streaming Spotify in the car has excellent sound quality as well.

I’m using Nova Launcher Prime, as I’ve done with every single Android device I’ve owned, and Nova Launcher Prime works well with the LG second screen.

I have not noticed any issues with apps force closing even when running multiple apps in the background. There is no lag when touching the screen using any apps.

I haven’t used the camera extensively so far, since I haven’t had a chance to get out and about to see some interesting subjects to photograph. However, I love the manual camera controls from what I have used. The auto camera isn’t anything special, albeit, it’s better than what I had on the MXPE. However, from the few examples of manual shooting I’ve done, I like the manual camera.

All in all, I’m happy with the V20 and feel that it is a nice upgrade from my previous MXPE.

Thanks for reading.


Laura I'm in the same boat as you. I've been on my MXPE since launch and it's really on its last leg. I'm glad you like your upgrade. I'm looking forward to the V30 hoping my Moto holds out.
 

Mike Dee

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I had been using a Moto X Pure Edition since October 2015. It was on its way out early August 2017, so I needed a new phone. I’ve only used Moto Android phones, and never had an LG phone. However, when I searched to see what was available, the LG V20 met my needs the best, and I purchased an unlocked model US 996 from Amazon on 12 August 2017.

The reasons I opted for the V20 were:

  • Quad DAC--I love listening to music and have high impedance headphones. The V20 does a phenomenal job driving my headphones. In fact the built-in DAC sounds better than using my external FiiO Q1 with other phones.
  • Camera--I enjoy taking pictures, and I’m impressed with the camera quality.The dual cameras are a nice touch, especially when I want to use the wide-angle. The manual camera controls are useful and provide more features for tweaking settings to get better shots. In addition to using the stock camera, I’ve installed the Google Camera apk, which has improved low-light pictures.
  • Removable battery--The battery was one thing failing on my old MXPE. Although I typically don’t need to swap batteries throughout the day, the ability to do so if needed on the V20 is a plus. I ordered the battery charging kit that includes an external battery charger, spare battery, and a case to carry a spare battery.
  • Size and form factor--I like large phones with 5.7” screens. I also prefer screens that are not curved, since I use tempered glass screen protectors. Many other phones are either too small, have large bezels, or don’t put the fingerprint scanner in a location where I like it. Having the fingerprint scanner on the back makes the V20 extremely easy for me to use.

Now that I’ve used the V20 for three weeks, I’ve found that I really like it. The battery lasts longer on the V20 than it did on the MXPE when the MXPE was brand new. I haven’t needed to use battery saver or adjust screen brightness manually to a lower level to conserve battery. Auto brightness works fine, and I’ve never had the battery get lower than 40% during a day of use. It is refreshing to have a phone that doesn’t require babysitting the battery to get through the day.

Connectivity is excellent. I haven’t had any issues with signal strength, WiFi, Bluetooth in my car. Call quality is excellent, whether using the speaker, speakerphone, or Bluetooth in the car. Streaming Spotify in the car has excellent sound quality as well.

I’m using Nova Launcher Prime, as I’ve done with every single Android device I’ve owned, and Nova Launcher Prime works well with the LG second screen.

I have not noticed any issues with apps force closing even when running multiple apps in the background. There is no lag when touching the screen using any apps.

I haven’t used the camera extensively so far, since I haven’t had a chance to get out and about to see some interesting subjects to photograph. However, I love the manual camera controls from what I have used. The auto camera isn’t anything special, albeit, it’s better than what I had on the MXPE. However, from the few examples of manual shooting I’ve done, I like the manual camera.

All in all, I’m happy with the V20 and feel that it is a nice upgrade from my previous MXPE.

Thanks for reading.


Spot on... Nice review
 

Laura Knotek

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Laura I'm in the same boat as you. I've been on my MXPE since launch and it's really on its last leg. I'm glad you like your upgrade. I'm looking forward to the V30 hoping my Moto holds out.
Good luck. My MXPE wouldn't have lasted for the V30, but I think the V20 is great for my needs, and I couldn't beat the price.
 

RaRa85

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Definitely my favorite device out of the three Android phones I've had in the Sony Xperia Z3, LG v10(great but way too susceptible to boot loop and mine did as well) and now V20 which is just all around great. Honestly if the Z3 had the camera and manual mode that LG has that would probably be my ideal phone. Front facing speakers were great and the battery life was superb. I have really enjoyed what LG has enabled us to do with their focus on audio and video content and the control they give us. Seriously if you haven't tried the HiFi recording app yet, it's just mind blowing.
 

MSFTisMIA

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Definitely my favorite device out of the three Android phones I've had in the Sony Xperia Z3, LG v10(great but way too susceptible to boot loop and mine did as well) and now V20 which is just all around great. Honestly if the Z3 had the camera and manual mode that LG has that would probably be my ideal phone. Front facing speakers were great and the battery life was superb. I have really enjoyed what LG has enabled us to do with their focus on audio and video content and the control they give us. Seriously if you haven't tried the HiFi recording app yet, it's just mind blowing.
As a former Z3 owner, I agree. The camera was solid but had the potential to be very, very good if Sony's SA mode didn't fight with you half the time and their post processing was a tad better. I like the V20, but I'm watching to see what LG does in terms of updates to 8.0.
 

Laura Knotek

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I never had a phone with a fingerprint scanner previously, but now that I've used it, I wouldn't want a phone without one. It's so much easier to use the fps with apps.

Sony needs to sort the problems with the USA carriers so that it can sell phones with fps in the USA.
 

RaRa85

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I never had a phone with a fingerprint scanner previously, but now that I've used it, I wouldn't want a phone without one. It's so much easier to use the fps with apps.

Sony needs to sort the problems with the USA carriers so that it can sell phones with fps in the USA.
100% agree. I would've given the Sony XZ Premium a chance easily if T-Mobile carried it. But the manual mode from Sony is still a letdown compared to LG. I shoot in manual 90% of the time so that's something I really look for in a stock camera app. I don't like to depend on third party apps too much. In fact I have rarely ever used a third party app since the V10.
 

flyingkytez

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I had been using a Moto X Pure Edition since October 2015. It was on its way out early August 2017, so I needed a new phone. I’ve only used Moto Android phones, and never had an LG phone. However, when I searched to see what was available, the LG V20 met my needs the best, and I purchased an unlocked model US 996 from Amazon on 12 August 2017.

The reasons I opted for the V20 were:

  • Quad DAC--I love listening to music and have high impedance headphones. The V20 does a phenomenal job driving my headphones. In fact the built-in DAC sounds better than using my external FiiO Q1 with other phones.
  • Camera--I enjoy taking pictures, and I’m impressed with the camera quality.The dual cameras are a nice touch, especially when I want to use the wide-angle. The manual camera controls are useful and provide more features for tweaking settings to get better shots. In addition to using the stock camera, I’ve installed the Google Camera apk, which has improved low-light pictures.
  • Removable battery--The battery was one thing failing on my old MXPE. Although I typically don’t need to swap batteries throughout the day, the ability to do so if needed on the V20 is a plus. I ordered the battery charging kit that includes an external battery charger, spare battery, and a case to carry a spare battery.
  • Size and form factor--I like large phones with 5.7” screens. I also prefer screens that are not curved, since I use tempered glass screen protectors. Many other phones are either too small, have large bezels, or don’t put the fingerprint scanner in a location where I like it. Having the fingerprint scanner on the back makes the V20 extremely easy for me to use.

Now that I’ve used the V20 for three weeks, I’ve found that I really like it. The battery lasts longer on the V20 than it did on the MXPE when the MXPE was brand new. I haven’t needed to use battery saver or adjust screen brightness manually to a lower level to conserve battery. Auto brightness works fine, and I’ve never had the battery get lower than 40% during a day of use. It is refreshing to have a phone that doesn’t require babysitting the battery to get through the day.

Connectivity is excellent. I haven’t had any issues with signal strength, WiFi, Bluetooth in my car. Call quality is excellent, whether using the speaker, speakerphone, or Bluetooth in the car. Streaming Spotify in the car has excellent sound quality as well.

I’m using Nova Launcher Prime, as I’ve done with every single Android device I’ve owned, and Nova Launcher Prime works well with the LG second screen.

I have not noticed any issues with apps force closing even when running multiple apps in the background. There is no lag when touching the screen using any apps.

I haven’t used the camera extensively so far, since I haven’t had a chance to get out and about to see some interesting subjects to photograph. However, I love the manual camera controls from what I have used. The auto camera isn’t anything special, albeit, it’s better than what I had on the MXPE. However, from the few examples of manual shooting I’ve done, I like the manual camera.

All in all, I’m happy with the V20 and feel that it is a nice upgrade from my previous MXPE.

Thanks for reading.


I also have the unlocked US996 model (much better without the carrier branding and bloatware, just sucks it doesn't have an FM tuner). This phone is my absolute favorite out of all the phones I've owned (the Galaxy S5 was 2nd). I also did a lot of research before buying the V20. Camera is very good, much better than my lousy S7 12MP shooter (outdoor landscape photos were terrible). The removable battery is a privilege to have, can't tell you how great it is to pop in a fresh battery and have 100% immediately vs. waiting 1 hour for a full charge. Unfortunately, the V20 is the last of it's kind due to the preference of the market demanding more beautiful phones and cutting out "unused" features (ahem, headphone jacks).
 

flyingkytez

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As a former Z3 owner, I agree. The camera was solid but had the potential to be very, very good if Sony's SA mode didn't fight with you half the time and their post processing was a tad better. I like the V20, but I'm watching to see what LG does in terms of updates to 8.0.

I'm also hoping for a camera software update on the V20, but really highly doubt it would come. They need to remove the laser autofocus, it's too slow.
 

Laura Knotek

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I also have the unlocked US996 model (much better without the carrier branding and bloatware, just sucks it doesn't have an FM tuner). This phone is my absolute favorite out of all the phones I've owned (the Galaxy S5 was 2nd). I also did a lot of research before buying the V20. Camera is very good, much better than my lousy S7 12MP shooter (outdoor landscape photos were terrible). The removable battery is a privilege to have, can't tell you how great it is to pop in a fresh battery and have 100% immediately vs. waiting 1 hour for a full charge. Unfortunately, the V20 is the last of it's kind due to the preference of the market demanding more beautiful phones and cutting out "unused" features (ahem, headphone jacks).
FM tuner isn't important to me at all, since I don't listen to local FM radio.
 

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