LG Optimus 2X Android smartphone

LG Optimus 2X review: The dual-core powered LG Optimus 2X has a 4in display, an 8-megapixel camera with 1080p full HD video recording and a HDMI-out port

LG Optimus 2X
  • LG Optimus 2X
  • LG Optimus 2X
  • LG Optimus 2X
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • 4in IPS display
  • Excellent build quality
  • HDMI-out

Cons

  • Battery life
  • Camera lens protrudes from back
  • Touchscreen has a "sticky" feel

Bottom Line

LG's Optimus 2X possesses excellent specifications, a great display and a well constructed design. However, its touchscreen has a sticky feel and battery life could be improved.

Would you buy this?

LG has traditionally focussed on the entry-level mobile phone market with handsets like the Optimus One, but its latest Android phone — the Optimus 2X — aims to compete at the top end of the market. Along with a powerful dual-core processor, the LG Optimus 2X has a 4in display, an 8-megapixel camera with 1080p full HD video recording and an HDMI-out port.

Read our LG Optimus 2X vs. Apple iPhone 4 smartphone showdown and check out our roundup of other top Android smartphones.

LG Optimus 2X: Design and display

The LG Optimus 2X is a very well constructed smartphone. It features the combination of a glass front, metallic sides and quality-feeling plastic on the back. First impressions are very positive, and the Optimus 2X looks and feels like an expensive handset from the moment you pick it up. We particularly liked the rear battery cover — it has a brushed metal rectangular strip in the middle that features an etched 'with Google' logo, and the brown plastic has a soft, rubberised feel that doesn't easily scratch or mark. The Optimus 2X feels sturdy and rigid, and there are no signs of any rattles or creaks. The camera lens protrudes slightly from the back so the phone doesn't sit flat on a table or desk.

The LG Optimus 2X has a power button on the top, and volume keys on the left side, along with a bottom-mounted micro USB port and a top-mounted headphone jack and HDMI-out port. The power and volume buttons are perfectly positioned and provide great tactility when pressed, while the HDMI-out port is covered by a plastic flap that is easily removed. Below the display are four backlit, touch sensitive Android keys — menu, home, back and search. The keys are relatively responsive, even if we prefer physical keys.

The LG Optimus 2X has a 4in IPS display with a resolution of 800x480. It displays vibrant colours and crisp text, and has excellent viewing angles. We were also left impressed with its performance in direct sunlight. Our main complaint stems from its responsiveness, as the Optimus 2X's screen felt rather sticky — it often required a firmer press than it should have to be activated, while gentle swipes across the screen sometimes didn't register. It's not a huge issue once you get used to it, but the Optimus 2X's touchscreen definitely feels less responsive than most competitors.

LG Optimus 2X: Software

The LG Optimus 2X comes with Google's Android 2.2 (Froyo) operating system, but LG has promised it will be upgradeable to the latest version of Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) in the coming months. The Gingerbread version of the Android platform will equip the Optimus 2X with a refreshed user interface, an improved keyboard layout, better text selection and gyroscopic support for 3D gaming.

LG has skinned the standard Android UI with its own overlay and many of the changes are positive. We particularly liked the music controls that are integrated into the notifications slide-down bar, the revamped contact pages, and the cartoonish-looking weather, clock and calendar widgets. LG's on-screen keyboard is also excellent and is very similar in both look and feel to the iPhone layout. However, LG's Facebook and Twitter apps are much inferior to the standard Android versions, and the entire LG overlay isn't as slick or smooth as we feel it should be — especially given the Optimus 2X is powered by a dual-core processor.

LG Optimus 2X: Other features

Along with a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor, the LG Optimus 2X has an 8-megapixel camera that doubles as a 1080p full HD video recorder, HDMI-out, DLNA and 8GB of internal memory. These top-end specifications put it in line to compete with other powerful Android smartphones like the HTC Desire HD, and the Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc.

The LG Optimus 2X's 8-megapixel rear camera takes still photographs with excellent levels of detail and sharpness, and possesses good colour reproduction. The lack of a camera shutter key is slightly annoying, but the on-screen button does a relatively good job in its place. The LED flash is powerful and bright, but does tend to wash out colours in low-light situations. Video recording is also excellent, with high levels of detail and decent sound quality.

The LG Optimus 2X comes with an HDMI-out port, meaning you can connect it directly to a high definition television, but LG doesn't include a HDMI cable in the sales package. Along with DLNA connectivity for wirelessly sharing media content, the Optimus 2X is well equipped for multimedia sharing.

The LG Optimus 2X has a microSD card slot, along with a reasonably impressive 8GB of internal memory, and is powered by 512MB of RAM. Unfortunately, the LG Optimus 2X has below-average battery life. Most users will get around 24 hours of life out of the Optimus 2X's 1500mAh battery before it needs a recharge, but heavy users may need an injection of power before then. Our review unit often ran out of power before a full day.

The LG Optimus 2X will initially launch through retailer Harvey Norman for $649 outright, and will then be available via open distribution as an unlocked handset "in the near future." Alternatively, Australian online store MobiCity sells the LG Optimus 2X outright and unlocked.

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