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LG V30 initial thoughts

by ‎08-03-2018 12:12 - edited ‎08-03-2018 16:03 (6,788 Views)

So after much deliberation (and consideration of my bank balance) I chose the LG V30 as my next device.

Reasons for this:

  • Cost - I don't have a lump sum to put down up front, nor do I want to increase my monthly outgoings. The V30 (and the contract it is on) was £1 upfront and £27 PM.
  • Android skin/launcher - having just spent 2 years with the LG G4 I like some of the features that LG build in to their skin (knock on to sleep/wake, app drawer, dual app running). I realise that some or all of these are available either in Android without a skin or using another launcher but I am happy with LGs version. I have not had a vanilla Android device so cannot compare.
  • Phone features - I am not great at managing storage (either app, media or junk) so I was looking for a device with plenty of room (64Gb) with the option for expanision (storage card slot). Being a somewhat clumsy person I also liked the option of waterproofing, but this phone also comes with an MIL standard attached (see details on link - here) which means it should last if I drop it. I don't have a bluetooth stereo in my car, so I wanted a phone with a headphone jack where possible (I listen to lots of podcasts while driving) and there are few dual charge/jack cables. It needed to have at least a FHD screen (1920x1080) while I would like a higher res if possible. I also want to be able to take decent photos but am no expert at playing with settings (like some on here) so reasonable camera and auto settings.

There are other aspects that are handy (wireless charging as standard, OLED screen, USB-C) that are nice but would not have been deal-breakers. I also would have liked the option of dual sim, but again not having it is not an issue.


So, I ordered the phone on Sunday afternoon, and got several texts/emails through the rest of the day advising what was happening (going through credit checks, processing, despatching) which kept me up to speed.

Eventually I got a message saying it would be delivered on Monday. Monday morning I got the message it was out for delivery and should be with me between 3 and 4pm. Typically I was at work and my wife picking up my daughter when DPD tried to deliver.

Fear not, I had a message saying they had missed me and would try again tomorrow but I could collect that evening if I wanted (which I did as my wife would be at work!). So a little before 8pm (26 hours after ordering) I had my new phone. Good service so far!


The phone is packaged in a black box with a silver V30 on the front (below) which looks nice but doesn't do justice to the phone inside.



When you take the top off you see the cloth that is part of the package you get. Not had one included with a phone before, so thought it was a nice touch. More so when you realise how much of a fingerprint magnet the back is!


box off.jpg


Taking the cloth of you see the phone itself (I've removed the plastic it comes in - a wrap-around style cover that stops any scratches/marks while in transit).




Here is the back - shiny! The darker circle is the fingerprint sensor and power button. On the right hand side in this shot are the power up and down buttons.


back of phone.jpg


Apart from the phone, in the box you get:

  • a mini box (the black one one left below) inside which is a
  • SIM removal tool (the white in the middle)
  • the wall charging plug,
  • the usb type c cable
  • and the supplied headphones in the B&O box.


box contents.jpg


It is still a shock that phone manufacturers are removing the headphone jack. While I realise it means they need to include less internals, how many people have invested in one form of headphone?

They might then say we include an adapter. Great. What happens if you need to charge the phone while using the headphones? Nope. This is one reason I chose this phone.


So the SIM removal tool gets the combined SIM/memory card tray out (below).

The phone uses the Nano SIM and a Micro SD card. I haven't put my SD card in the phone (yet) as I am still moving over and the old phone still gets used for a few things.


sim tray.jpg


While the phone has an MIL rating, on top of the IP one, I am not brave enough to carry the phone around naked. So I brought a case. 

I have used Spigen cases before and I have found them to be well made and provide great protection to my phone. The one below is a neo hybrid (meaning it is made from two types of material) so it provides good protection while not being overly large.


front of case.jpg case apart 2.jpg


I also ordered a wireless charger/stand for my desk at work. This was because it makes it easier to charge or pick up - I don't need to worry about trying to put the cable in or pull it out which should be eaiser as it is now a reversible type C, but still...

The LED at the bottom of the stand is blue when charging, or green when the battery is full.


charger.jpg on charger.jpg


Switching over was easy - LG have a backup/switch app built into their UI. It was as simple as making sure both phones had enough charge (more than 30%), back up the G4 and then hit send/receive on the two phones.

Left them for about 20 minutes and everything had been sent over - contacts, apps, media, settings (wifi etc), messages the lot. You can pick and choose but for convenience I hit everything.


And that was that - phone was up and running. Now to have a play...



The phone itself is gorgeous. The LG G4 was different in terms of styling (with the curved display), while this is a more standard flat display with curved edges. But this is something else. I have not had an OLED display before (or in the V30's case P-OLED) as the G4 was an LCD. That was good, but the change in type and the advances in technology mean that black does mean black and colours really stand out.


I am stunned at how small the phone is even though it has a 6" screen. It is the same size (ish) height and width wise as the G4, and smaller in depth. (For reference the G4 screen is 5.5") It also feels lighter even though it is actually heavier (158g to 155g) so guessing it is down to how it feels rather than how it physically is.


So far battery life is much better - I use Waze navigation on the way to and from work for traffic avoidance. On the G4 the battery would drop 20-30% on a 45 minute commute while the V30 drops about 10%.


I have not taken any photos with it so far so cannot comment on that.


Watching videos (youtube) are nice and clear. Need to get some FHD or higher res stuff on there to really test it, but everything looks really sharp. Reading text is clear (I use the Kindle app a lot) and navigating round is easy.


The fingerprint scanner is quick, and you can register a number of fingers in case you are holding it in the left or right hand.

I can see why Samsung too so much stick for where the scanner is on the S8 - the positioning on the V30 for me is great; exactly where my finger is when holding it. 


 That's it for now. I will be seeing how I get on over the next few days and weeks. If there is anything that someone would like me to try or would like to know then post a comment and I will get back to you.


Thanks for reading!

on ‎08-03-2018 12:44
Great review @gmarkj. Looks stunning. I must admit I've always liked the look of LG phones.

I totally get what you mean about the screen size and the size of the phone. My S8+ screen is 6.1" yet is only slightly bigger than my old Note 4 with a screen size of 5.7". It's also slimmer which makes it more comfortable in the hand.

I also don't get the removal of the headphone jack. That would be a definite deal breaker for me as I listen to music, watch videos and stream films/TV shows on my phone, often late at night. Don't think my neighbours would appreciate listening with me when they have to get up early for work 😊

Anyway really enjoyed reading your review. Have fun with your new phone.

on ‎08-03-2018 13:07

Very interesting review @gmarkj, cheers for posting! Smiley Happy

I was about to ask how you find the position of the fingerprint reader until read further and saw you had already covered it. smiley


I didn't realise the headphone jack removal is being done by other manufacturers too as I've only come across it when I upgraded my iPhone. I don't use headphones often so hadn't considered the issue with charging at the same time. There must be some workarounds for that though...?

on ‎08-03-2018 13:15

Thanks for the feedback @Glory1 and @Marjo.


The Huawei Mate 10 Pro is also missing the headphone jack, as is the Pixel 2.


Space saving is the quoted reason, but if it means the manufacturer can then retail wireless headphones at £100+ why wouldn't they?


The workaround in most cases is that the phone either comes with headphones with a correct connector (iPhone have the lightning, Pixel and Mate 10 have a USB C) or an adapter that converts the phone port to a 3.5mm jack for other headphones.


on ‎08-03-2018 13:46
As I said no headphone jack no phone. And as I tend to go for expensive phones (because they have the features I want, not because I want to show off), spending £100+ for wireless headphones is a step too far 😂

The workaround seems a pain to me. So I'll stick with Samsung who, so far, have retained the headphone jack.
on ‎08-03-2018 14:02

Excellent review @gmarkj. Thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

on ‎11-03-2018 02:44

Good review @gmarkj ☺

To be honest the lack of a headphone jack wouldn't be a problem for me and yes, I'm also a lover of all things Samsung so I doubt very much I would be tempted to buy anything else in fairness. But this does sound like a good phone and these days, unless you pay for a flagship model, I find little difference in functionality on all android.

on ‎14-03-2018 08:03

So I have had the phone about a week now, so I thought I would post some updates.

I have used the headphones a few times, and have to say they provide a good sound experience. I had to try all of the included tips for the headphones (the little rubber piece) to get a really good fit. I don't possess an expensive pair of headphones that would benefit from the effort that LG put in to the audio (high fidelity quad dac), but what I get from the ones I have sounds better than the G4.

The headphone cable is made from two different materials - the bottom half (from the connector to where they split) is a fabric type cable, while the top is a rubbery style. This means that they don't tangle up as much as old single style cables do. A slight downside is that the lead is not as long as I would like, but you can get extenders so not a massive negative more something to bear in mind.

The only gripe I have is that the headphone jack is on the top of the phone, meaning if you have it in your pocket then the phone is the wrong way round when you take it out to check what that notification was.

Battery life is superb. While I had to have the G4 on charge a couple of times a day (and that might be partly down to the life of the battery), the V30 seems to last ages. I am charging it up once per day and that lasts more than 24 hours.

It feels so thin and light, much easier to handle than the G4. Although it is taller it is both thinner and narrower, and actually heavier but doesn't feel it (whether this is down to the cases I was using, I am not sure). I don't have the biggest hands, but using the screen is fine unless you need to reach the top edge or both sides. 

I still find myself just staring at the screen occasionally. It is just so easy to look at. I read a lot of books using the Kindle app, and the words seem really clear and sharp on the dark background. Plus using it in low light is much more comfortable because of how dim the screen can go with the contrast ration of an OLED screen.

I have taken a couple of pictures (nothing of interest, just for referring to later) but they seem clear and sharp. I will point out that I am no Viridis, so don't expect professional standard if/when I post any...

Using the fingerprint scanner seems really natural now. It is exactly where my finger would rest holding it in one hand and is quick enough to not be a burden to use. I like that some apps that require a log in will use a scan instead of a PIN/password. Plus I found out that it recognises your finger regardless of direction, ie, you don't have to try it with the phone the right way up which is useful if you are doing something and the screen turns off or you have it in landscape (sideways).


That's all I can think of for now. If anything else occurs I will add another post, or if anyone has any questions or if there is something they would like me to try then tag me in the post and I will see what I can do.

by Community Manager
on ‎14-03-2018 11:27

Bit late to the party here but great review @gmarkj! I'm jealous of the battery life you're getting on this phone. Mine's on the way out so I can to keep it on charge when I'm not on the move so 24 hours on a single charge sounds like heaven! laughing


Thanks for sharing! thumbsup

on ‎21-03-2018 09:35

Battery life in the last few days has been a little less, but I think that might be because I am using it more! Been streaming more video (WiFi not data) which is the culprit.

The headphone jack is still at the wrong end for me (in my opinion).

The only other issue is that the headphone cable seems to be shorter than on an old set but that could just be a guess.

Still love how it fits in the hand - feels much lighter and definitely thinner than the old phone.


on ‎21-03-2018 09:46

Thanks for the update @gmarkj, it's good to hear that you are still happy with the phone. My own J7 Prime has the headphone jack at the bottom and it just feels wrong. I know it's done to help prevent water ingress but all the same....