Hot on the heels of the excellent G4 premium smartphone comes the LG V10, and the big difference between the two is the V10 has a manual video mode
It doesn’t seem too long ago when we were lauding the capabilities of the excellent LG G4, a smartphone which not only looked great but had some very strong photographic and video capabilities. As much as we loved the LG G4, the video (although excellent), lacked a couple of features which would have made the phone well-nigh perfect. We shot some travel video’s with the LG G4, in particular, one showcasing Ullswater Lake in England’s Lake District, the slight annoyance we found with the G4 was the automatic refocusing causing some of the footage to jump a little.
Although we were able to overcome this, there were some obvious times when we wished for better control over the video filming and Voilà! Our wishes have come true. However, this article is not about the G4 but rather a brand new LG V10. Have LG hit the bullseye with their latest smartphone? Let’s have a look at what it has to offer before we make any conclusion.
The first of its V Series phones, the LG V10 was designed to provide a rich multimedia experience ― both consumption and creation ― for today’s social network savvy consumers. Distinctive new features such as a Second Screen, Dual Front Cameras, and Manual Video Mode differentiate the LG V10 from the competition. All this comes wrapped in a design that utilizes high-grade stainless steel and a durable silicone skin to make the V10 one of the rare smartphones to pass drop tests for shock conducted by an independent third party.
Always pushing the boundaries of smartphone innovation, LG is introducing a Second Screen as an inset display above the main 5.7-inch QHD IPS Quantum Display on the V10. Working independently, the Second Screen can be set up as an “always on” display to enhance the V10’s productiveness all without impacting battery life. Set the Second Screen to display the weather, time, date and battery icon when the main display is off. With the main display on, the Second Screen can be set to convert to a dedicated launching area for shortcuts or your favorite apps. What’s more, when you’re enjoying a movie or game on the V10, the Second Screen will notify you discreetly without blocking your view when a call or text comes in. Ignoring the notification won’t distract you from your enjoyment or you can pause whatever you’re doing to respond.
Dual Front Cameras and Multi-view Recording
Wide angle images usually require a large, heavy lens which can distort the corners of photographs. The LG V10 features 5MP Dual Front Cameras with two separate lenses to capture standard 80 degree selfies or perfect wide angle selfies of 120 degrees, without the need to pan the smartphone which increases the likelihood of camera shake. For the wide angle shot, the V10 employs a sophisticated software algorithm to combine images from the two separate lenses which are just far enough apart to provide two different points of view. The ability to take group selfies without a selfie-stick has never been easier. Multi-view Recording can capture different angles utilizing all three cameras on the V10. Select and insert the version that looks best in your masterpiece.
Video and Audio Capture Capabilities
As the LG G4 did with photography, the LG V10 offers users the ultimate in video capturing, editing and sharing. The V10 is the first smartphone to offer a manual mode for video. First introduced for still photographs on the G4, the technology has been enhanced to handle video recordings as well. With Manual Video Mode, budding directors can easily create professional-quality videos by adjusting options such as shutter speed, frame rate, ISO, white balance and focus while recording. Videos can be recorded in three resolutions ― HD, FHD or UHD ― and two aspect ratios ― 16:9 standard or 21:9 cinematic.
In addition to its impressive professional-level video and audio capabilities, the LG V10 offers these additional features that video content look and sound their best:
- Steady Record: utilizes electronic image stabilization (EIS) optimized for recording video to neutralize shake, helping to capture sharper video footage when in motion
- Snap Video: create one video by combining many shorter videos
- 15 Sec. Auto Edit: create a short video highlight clip by automatically eliminating blurred frames and static scenes
- Quick Video Editor: easily trim or change the frame rate and add after-effects, such as colors and background music
- Quick Share: when finished recording, a pop-up appears on the display showing options of popular social networks to make video sharing even easier and faster
- Audio Monitor: adjust the sensitivity of the three microphones during video recording and directly monitor and control audio input, including directional recording capability to highlight sound from one particular location
- Wind Noise Filter: eliminate external wind noise for high-quality sound when shooting video outdoors
The V10 carries on LG’s tradition of providing alternative storage options with a microSD card slot. Compatible with cards of up to 2TB, V10 owners can shoot as much 4K video as they want. And with the 3,000mAh removable battery, you can always be ready with a second or third replacement battery to pop in if you ever run low on power while shooting. And with Qualcomm Quick Charge™ 2.0 technology built-in, it only takes 40 minutes to get a 50 percent charge.
Durability and Design
The LG V10 was designed to be taken places other phones normally wouldn’t feel at home. The resilient Dura Guard frame firmly secures the display to protect the phone from hard bumps and tumbles. The LG V10’s frame is composed of SAE grade 316L stainless steel, the same tough, hypoallergenic material used to make surgical tools and high-end watches. Because the edges and corners are the most vulnerable areas of a phone, the extra protection provided by the Dura Guard frame ensures maximum durability.
On the back and bottom of the display, resilient but soft Dura Skin offers added protection from direct impacts to the device. Dura Skin is soft to the touch but also is highly resistant to nicks and scratches. What’s more, the back grid pattern was designed specifically to offer a more secure grip, even when you’re on the go. Independent testing and certification firm MET Laboratories tested the LG V10 by dropping it from a height of 48 inches repeatedly at different angles and found it to be “MIL-STD-810G Transit Drop Compliant” for the shock.
Great Sounding Music and Voice
As an advanced multimedia smartphone, the sound in the V10 has been designed to be best-in-class. The V10 features 32 bit Hi-Fi DAC by ESS Technology, designers of high-performance audio products for professionals. The LG V10 automatically detects connected devices and provides sound control options which can be customized. And the LG V10 is the first commercial device to utilize Qualcomm Technologies TruSignal™ antenna boost technology designed to intelligently optimize signal strength at all times for fewer dropped calls, faster data, and better call coverage, no matter how the phone is held.
Access and Security
Along with the popular Knock Code, the LG V10 features a new fingerprint sensor to unlock the smartphone and turn on the display simultaneously. The sensor also works with Android Pay in the United States to make purchases as quick and easy as possible.
“The LG V10 was designed from the ground up primarily as a multimedia smartphone for the sharing ecosystem,” said Juno Cho, president and CEO of the LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “We heard from many customers that until the G4, they weren’t comfortable going on vacation or outings without a separate camera. With the V10, we hope to do for video what the G4 did for photographs.”
The LG V10 will be available in Korea starting this month followed by markets such as the United States, China and key countries in Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. Information regarding additional markets and launch dates will be announced locally in the weeks to come.
LG V10 Key Specifications:*
- Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon™ 808 Processor
- Display: Main) 5.7-inch QHD IPS Quantum Display (2560 x 1440 / 513ppi) Secondary) 2.1-inch IPS Quantum
Display (160 x 1040 / 513ppi)
- Memory: 4GB LPDDR3 RAM / 64GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 2TB)
- Camera: Rear) 16MP with F1.8 Aperture / OIS 2.0 Front) 5MP Dual Lens (80o Standard Angle / 120o Wide Angle)
- Battery: 3,000mAh (removable)
- OS: Android 5.1.1 Lollipop
- Size: 159.6 x 79.3 x 8.6mm
- Weight: 192g
- Network: LTE-A Cat. 6
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a, b, g, n, ac / Bluetooth 4.1 / NFC / USB 2.0
- Colors: Space Black / Luxe White / Modern Beige / Ocean Blue / Opal Blue
LG V10 Conclusion: The LG G4 is our favourite smartphone to date, based upon it’s stylish looks coupled with excellent photographic capabilities. The LG V10 builds upon the G4’s lauded capabilities adding some great new features, none more obvious than the manual video mode. We’ve not had the chance to test the video capability first-hand, this will be done a little later. Picking a favourite between the two phones will likely be a difficult task, so perhaps the best solution would be to use both, consider it style with a bit of extra substance.
About Paul Godbold