After a less than great showing in 2016 LG seems to have fire in its eyes and that passion can be felt in the latest iteration of its smartphones.
The G6 that was launched earlier this year was great and that greatness continues in the subject of today’s review – The LG V30+.
This handset is rather pricey at over R15 000 but after an extended period of time with it I can say with much confidence that the asking price is justified.
The handset clocks in at 6 inches and sports the same 18:9 aspect ratio we saw in the G6 earlier this year. The display is wonderfully sharp with a native resolution of 2880 x 1440 and a 538ppi pixel density.
The quality of the display is made better by its support of HDR10.
Charging and data transfer is handled through a USB Type C port which allows for Quick Charge 3.0 thanks to Qualcomm.
One last thing before we dive into the review, this is simply the bigger version of the LG V30. The only difference between this handset and the V30 is that the V30+ comes with 128GB of on-board storage everything else is exactly the same.
LG V30+ review – That camera
Before we get to the performance of this smartphone we need to take a closer look at the rear dual-camera setup on the V30+.
The standard angle lens has a 16MP sensor with a 71 degree field of view and an f1.6 aperture. The second lens houses a slightly smaller 13MP sensor with a 120 degree field of view and a f1.9 aperture.
The upshot of that is a lot of light can get through and in dark environments this is great.
The automatic settings mode is decent but I would urge anybody that picks up this phone to use the manual settings. The control this mode gives you is great, not DSLR great but as far as smartphone photography goes the V30+ is incredible.
Cinematography is just as good with a few additions that you might want to take note of.
Firstly video can be recorded at 4K at 30 frames per second or Full HD at 60 frames per second.
The real star of the show is Pinch Zoom. This software allows you to select a subject and smoothly zoom into it while recording. It works really well and I can see this being of value to vloggers and other content creators.
Overall the camera on this handset is one of the best out there.
LG V30+ review – Performance
The V30+ performs rather well
The handset scored over 173196 in Antutu which is around the score we expect from a handset running the Qualcomm 835 chipset and 4GBs of LPDDR4 memory.
For now the handset is running Android 7.0 but LG has said that the V30+ will be getting an upgrade to Android 8.0 soon.
Overall the V30+ performs well and it competes with other handsets in the price range.
LG V30+ review – Battery
The V30+ contains a 3 300mAh battery and the life you can squeeze out of it is truly impressive.
With WiFi and mobile data switched on as well as light browsing, calls and instant messaging the V30+ lasted 10 hours with a charge taking 1 hour 45 minutes.
The problem is that once you start watching videos on the V30+ the battery begins to deplete extremely quickly. Within 30 minutes of streaming YouTube videos the battery had depleted 10% of its charge and in under three hours the handset was giving us the message that the battery level was critical.
We would have liked to see a bigger battery but it’s not so small that it’s an issue.
LG V30+ review – That DAC
The final stand-out feature that we’ll touch on is the quad-chip digital to analogue converter (DAC) inside the V30+.
To activate the feature you will have to have an audio device connected to the handset.
Once activated there are five presets you can choose from with Normal presenting the most well rounded sound giving treble and bass both equal footing on the audio spectrum.
The DAC also houses a filter which will clean up the audio and prevents some frequencies hanging around longer than they are required to.
This becomes apparent when listening to music with a lot more high frequencies. The V30+ is the best audio experience I’ve had in a while.
LG V30+ review – Conclusion
The LG V30+ is a wonderful handset.
The camera is reason enough to consider this handset has your next upgrade. I have found myself heading out at ‘Golden Hour’ just to snap photos for my Instagram feed which is something I don’t think any smartphone has ever inspired me to do.
The performance is really good but it was expected given the specs of the V30+.
What makes this phone great is that it tries to be good at a few things and it does all of them really well.
It’s a pity that LG had to wait until everybody owned an iPhone 8 or Samsung S8 or Note 8 before releasing this because it is impressive and gets a deserved recommendation from us.