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LG G Flex 2 Smartphone Review

Florian Wimmer (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 04/16/2015

Bananaphone. LG presents the second edition of its curved, high-end smartphone, LG G Flex 2, with improvements: Primarily the higher resolution screen is to silence the critics. We closely examined the slightly smaller phablet in the test.

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In review: LG G Flex 2

For the original German review, see here.

Currently there are hundreds of smartphones available in the market. Most offer decent performance and look reasonable. This makes it difficult to stand out, but LG managed to do so in early 2014. The curved shape of LG's G Flex in particular, which comfortably nestled on the face during calls, was striking. However, the unusual display technology also had its price and was not free from teething problems, which prevented the G Flex from achieving a higher rating.

LG has now launched the successor into the market: The LG G Flex 2 has shrunk to 5.5 inches, and therefore, can still be called a phablet. The screen resolution is now higher, the processor comes from a newer generation, otherwise,  little has changed. Is that enough to compete successfully against the established and significantly cheaper competition?

In the meantime, Google's Nexus 6 and HTC's One M9 have finally been introduced into the market . Add to these, the iPhone 6 Plus or Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge, which can also score with an unusual display concept. And perhaps even low-priced devices like the OnePlus One might be a threat to LG's G Flex...

LG G Flex 2 (Optimus G Series)
Graphics adapter
Qualcomm Adreno 430, Core: 650 MHz
Memory
2048 MB 
Display
5.5 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel, capacitive touchscreen, Curved POLED, glossy: yes
Storage
16 GB eMMC Flash, 16 GB 
, 8 GB free
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm combo audio jack, Card Reader: micro-SD max. 2 TB, Sensors: A-GPS, motion sensor, light sensor, proximity sensor, compass, FM radio, NFC, infrared, Android Beam, Smartshare Beam, Media Server, Miracast, DLNA,
Networking
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.1, LTE/4G (800/1800/2 600 MHz), HSPA+ 42 Mbps, HSUPA 5.76 Mbps, UMTS (850/900/1900/2100 MHz), GSM (850/900/1800/1900MHz); SAR rate: 0.471W/kg (head), 0.418W/kg (body)
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 9.4 x 149.1 x 75.3 ( = 0.37 x 5.87 x 2.96 in)
Battery
11 Wh Lithium-Ion, 3000 mAh, non-removable
Operating System
Android 5.0 Lollipop
Camera
Webcam: 2.1 megapixels (front), 13 megapixels, LED dual flash, laser auto-focus, OIS+ (optical image stabilizer)
Additional features
Speakers: rear-sided mono speaker, Keyboard: virtual keyboard, headset, Knock Code, QuickRemote, QuickMemo+, RemoteCall Service, LG Smartworld, ThinkFree Viewer, guest mode, dual-window, Smart Keyboard, Smart cleaning, Smart Notice, intelligent screen, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
152 g ( = 5.36 oz / 0.34 pounds), Power Supply: 73 g ( = 2.58 oz / 0.16 pounds)
Price
700 Euro

 

Case

Anyone who has ever seen LG's G Flex will immediately recognize the family relationship of the G Flex 2. Once again, the casing  curves forward and is flexible. It can be placed on a table and pressed down until it is flat. Although the smartphone produces cracking noises, it reverts to its original shape afterward.

On the one hand, the curved shape pleasantly nestles up against the cheek during calls and on the other, the phone can be carried around comfortably in the pants pocket; it is unlikely that the flexible casing would get damaged.

The phone features the self-healing back cover with a coating of polyrotaxane that closes minor scratches on its own. However, these scratches do not remain invisible; they reappear against the light. It is reassuring that LG has once again decided to equip the screen with Gorilla Glass 3, which makes it more scratch resistant.

However, we do not find the curved casing entirely practical. The position of the standby button and volume control on the back often make it necessary to change one's grip before they are in reach. Keys on the sides are quicker to access.

Pressure on the screen is not visible, and the casing can hardly be twisted. Although the smartphone is relatively flexible, the casing seems quite stable at the same time.

The G Flex 2 is smaller than its precursor; the screen measures only 5.5 inches diagonally. The casing's dimensions are 9.4 x 149.1 x 75.3 millimeters (~0.37 x 5.9 x 3 in) and thus its depth and width have shrunk, but it is also slightly thicker.

Connectivity

LG has reduced the internal storage from 32 to 16 GB. The system reserves 8 GB of that for itself. However, LG's G Flex 2 supports micro-SD memory cards with up to 2 TB, which should certainly suffice in the future. Presently, memory cards have a maximum of 128 GB. The micro-SD card and micro-SIM can be inserted into a combined reader under the removable back cover, but the battery cannot be swapped.

This time, LG has not installed a USB 3.0 port, but the micro-USB 2.0 port in LG's G Flex 2 supports SlimPort technology for transmitting video and audio signals via the USB port. Other available transmission technologies are Miracast, Android Beam, SmartShare Beam, and DLNA. Furthermore, an FM radio is also installed.

The working memory of 2 GB is still generously sized as befits a high-end device. An Infrared transmitter is also located on the casing's upper edge. It enables using the smartphone as a remote control for the TV, for example.

Left: No interfaces
Left: No interfaces
Right: No interfaces
Right: No interfaces
Upper edge: Infrared transmitter
Upper edge: Infrared transmitter
Lower edge: Micro-USB 2.0 (SlimPort), 3.5 combo audio jack
Lower edge: Micro-USB 2.0 (SlimPort), 3.5 combo audio jack

Software

LG's proprietary software, Fluid UI is based on Android Lollipop 5. This is good news, because several manufacturers have not yet changed to Google's latest operating system. On the Internet, many users have complained that the Fluid UI is not one of the fastest user interfaces and that it occasionally takes time to reload. We have also observed this behavior during our tests now and again.

LG has incorporated some special features in its software. For example, it is possible to flick downward on the lock screen to display notifications and the time without having to activate the smartphone. "Knock Code" enables creating a personal tap code for unlocking the smartphone, bypassing the  awkwardly positioned standby button on the back. This works quite reliably. Two applications can be activated beside each other on the split screen, or single apps can be displayed over the user interfaces as a floating window.

Fortunately, no adware has been installed. Instead, some very useful apps are preloaded that can be uninstalled should they not be wanted: A to-do list can be created, TVs can be controlled via "Quick Remote", or the smartphone can be controlled via "Voice Mate".

Communication & GPS 

Not much has changed in the wireless communication standards compared with the precursor. This was not necessary for Wi-Fi: All current standards up to the very fast 802.11 ac are supported. The reception was still decent at a distance of 10 meters (~33 ft) and through three walls. However, the smartphone often had minor communication issues with our Wi-Fi network, which were evident in the slow opening of websites. NFC and Bluetooth 4.1 are also installed.

Four frequencies are supported in the GSM network, as well as the UMTS and the LTE networks. This is rather meager for a high-end smartphone. Globetrotters might not find a signal in some regions. The reception was good in the urban area in the  moderately developed German E-Plus net; even in the indoors we often had full signal.

The GPS module could not track us indoors and needed a relatively long time before it located us in the outdoors, with an accuracy of about 10 meters (~33 ft). We take both the Garmin eTrex 30 and the smartphone on a bike ride for a direct comparison. LG's G Flex 2 measured 110 meters (~120 yd) less than the navigation system, which is a significant deviation considering the fairly short route. The altitude deviations are significantly high, where the review sample measured 100 meters (~109 yd) less than the navigation system. Neither device is perfect in tracking on paths and streets. For example, both showed us "hovering" over a pond rather than placing us on the path. Garmin's navigation system is significantly more accurate at the junction.

GPS LG G Flex 2 total
GPS LG G Flex 2 total
GPS LG G Flex 2 junction
GPS LG G Flex 2 junction
GPS LG G Flex 2 pond
GPS LG G Flex 2 pond
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 total
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 total
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 junction
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 junction
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 pond
GPS Garmin eTrex 30 pond

Telephone & Voice Quality

LG has modified the phone app slightly, which can also be displayed as a floating window over the rest of the operating system. Otherwise, Android veterans and even newcomers will quickly get used to it. The app with the tabs "Dial", "Call Lists", "Contacts", "Favorites" and "Groups" should be self-explanatory. Users, who find the screen too big, can also enable one-handed control, which displays a smaller keypad on the right edge of the screen.

The voice quality is good; the other party was sufficiently loud and quite clear. Thanks to the decent microphone, our voice was also clear at the other end. In hands-free mode, the call partners also understood each other well. The reason that the call quality cannot quite match that of, for example, the excellent Sony Xperia Z3 is because somewhat louder voices cause the speaker to hum at the other end, and the microphone adds some static noise to our voice when listening closely.

Front camera
Front camera

Cameras & Multimedia

LG has quite a good proprietary camera technology that has already been  installed in the LG G3. A 13-megapixel camera with a maximum resolution of 4160x3120 pixels, an optical image stabilizer that is particularly practical when recording videos and a laser auto-focus system is located on the back. In addition, there is a face recognition algorithm and a conventional auto-focus since according to some sources, the laser has a relatively short range. In fact, focusing was quite fast in our test even when the object was at a distance.

The image quality is very appealing with good colors and image sharpness; the surfaces look a little grainy when magnified. The cameras in LG's G Flex 2 and Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge are roughly on par in bright light. The dual LED flash helps in low light. Even without it, the G Flex 2 takes relatively decent pictures, although edges and surfaces look patchy. Compared with other smartphones, low-light pictures are quite focused.

Selfies taken with the front-facing camera also look sharp, but again, they look pixelated and large areas look patchy when zoomed in. However, this is not a bad performance for a secondary camera. It is a little annoying that LG's G Flex 2 does not have a dedicated camera button. The rear-sided buttons are just passably suitable for a release button since they are placed quite close to the camera lens.

The G Flex 2 can record UHD videos in 4K resolution. However, LG does not specify any frame rates. We measured 30 frames per second, but panning and fast movements do not look very smooth. The lens adapts quickly to brightness changes, but color areas look patchy, the colors are pale, and diagonal lines in the pictures are not displayed properly. It does not have a real "Wow - 4K!" factor.

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3
click to load images

Accessories

A headset is included with the LG G Flex 2. We will deal with its audio quality under "Speakers". Otherwise, a small charger with a separate USB cable and a not very helpful quick start guide is in the box. Device specific accessories for the G Flex 2 are not found on LG's homepage.

Warranty

A 24-month warranty is included with the smartphone.

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Input Devices & Controls

LG's keyboard is convenient to use; its height and layout can be customized and the language is quickly changed via the settings button. It was rather annoying that although German was set from the beginning, an English keyboard layout was displayed and the umlauts were not found directly on the keyboard even in the German layout.

The touchscreen is very sensitive; it responds to light touch and is reliable even at its edges. The curved shape is rather inconvenient when the smartphone is on a table because the upper and lower parts teeter.

Keyboard portrait mode
Keyboard portrait mode
Keyboard landscape mode
Keyboard landscape mode

Display

The screen of LG's G Flex was one of the main reasons for complaint. Although the specially developed plastic OLED screen reproduced absolute black and brilliant colors, it should have at least had a Full HD resolution and been somewhat brighter for its price of 800 Euros (~$852). LG has listened to the criticism about the resolution and now offers Full HD. Since LG's G Flex 2 is rather smaller now, the pixel density has increased to 403 ppi. On the other hand, the brightness rates have dropped, which is too bad. The average brightness is only 273 cd/m². The illumination with a homogeneity of 97% is again outstanding.

270
cd/m²
272
cd/m²
274
cd/m²
270
cd/m²
278
cd/m²
274
cd/m²
273
cd/m²
276
cd/m²
276
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 278 cd/m² Average: 273.7 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 97 %
Center on Battery: 278 cd/m²
Contrast: ∞:1 (Black: 0 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 8.03 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 6.71 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
Gamma: 1.89
LG G Flex 2
Adreno 430, 810 MSM8994, 16 GB eMMC Flash
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
PowerVR GX6450, A8, 64 GB eMMC Flash
Google Nexus 6
Adreno 420, 805 APQ8084, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
Mali-T760 MP8, 7420 Octa, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
OnePlus One
Adreno 330, 801 MSM8974AC, 64 GB eMMC Flash
HTC One M9
Adreno 430, 810 MSM8994, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Screen
52%
8%
36%
21%
30%
Brightness middle
278
519
87%
274
-1%
343
23%
423
52%
474
71%
Brightness
274
496
81%
264
-4%
338
23%
408
49%
458
67%
Brightness Distribution
97
90
-7%
89
-8%
94
-3%
83
-14%
85
-12%
Black Level *
0.62
0.54
0.4
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
8.03
3.67
54%
6.99
13%
2.2
73%
5.56
31%
6.32
21%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
6.71
3.78
44%
4.01
40%
2.37
65%
7.55
-13%
6.36
5%
Gamma
1.89 127%
2.42 99%
2.03 118%
2.41 100%
2.33 103%
2.43 99%
CCT
7750 84%
7327 89%
6329 103%
6425 101%
7624 85%
8218 79%
Contrast
837
783
1185
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
87.77
58.81

* ... smaller is better

Every pixel lights up on its own in an OLED screen and turned off completely so that the black level achieves 0.0 cd/m² and the contrast is theoretically infinite. Both Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge and Google's Nexus 6 can boast with that, as well. A closer analysis using the CalMAN software and the spectrophotometer exhibited a light bluish cast and relatively high color shifts from the reference color space.

The color reproduction can be set in three levels according to personal preferences in the settings. The colors are somewhat pale in "Natural" mode, but skin looks more natural. In the "Standard" mode, the colors look slightly more brilliant and it is a good compromise of rich colors and natural hues. Colors are very intense in "Vivid" mode, but the picture might seem slightly oversaturated.

CalMAN Color management
CalMAN Color management
CalMAN  ColorChecker
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps

Although the high contrast should permit outdoor use, the screen's low brightness impedes this. Furthermore, the glossy screen limits the use of  the smartphone in very bright surroundings.

The viewing angle stability is exemplary. The image can be recognized without color deviations even from very flat angles.

Outdoors
Outdoors
Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Performance

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MSM8994 SoC in LG's G Flex 2 has eight cores. In the past, we have found that this is more a marketing ploy than providing a real performance boost. It is the same here: Four cores clocked speedily with 2.0 GHz, but the other four are significantly slower with only 1.5 GHz. In addition, the slower cores are based on an inefficient architecture. However, this core combination also makes it possible to disable the stronger cores when less power is used and thus save energy.

LG's G Flex 2 is roughly on par with the OnePlus One in our processor tests, but both the Apple iPhone 6 Plus and the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge clearly outperform it.

Linpack Android / IOS
Multi Thread (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
640 MFLOPS ∼22%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1440.81 MFLOPS ∼49% +125%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
839.138 MFLOPS ∼28% +31%
OnePlus One
694.102 MFLOPS ∼23% +8%
HTC One M9
685.383 MFLOPS ∼23% +7%
Single Thread (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
396 MFLOPS ∼39%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
766.2 MFLOPS ∼75% +93%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
625.622 MFLOPS ∼61% +58%
OnePlus One
366.084 MFLOPS ∼36% -8%
HTC One M9
578.161 MFLOPS ∼57% +46%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
2757 Points ∼9%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
2874 Points ∼9% +4%
Google Nexus 6
3141 Points ∼10% +14%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
4843 Points ∼16% +76%
OnePlus One
2095 Points ∼7% -24%
HTC One M9
3499 Points ∼11% +27%
32 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1121 Points ∼24%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1609 Points ∼35% +44%
Google Nexus 6
1043 Points ∼22% -7%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
1329 Points ∼29% +19%
OnePlus One
878 Points ∼19% -22%
HTC One M9
1163 Points ∼25% +4%
AndEBench
Java (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
479 Iter./s ∼15%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
2156 Iter./s ∼66% +350%
HTC One M9
1400 Iter./s ∼43% +192%
Native (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
5089 Iter./s ∼17%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
23154 Iter./s ∼76% +355%
HTC One M9
15384 Iter./s ∼50% +202%
ANDEBench PRO
3D (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
35.5 fps ∼27%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
37.8 fps ∼29% +6%
OnePlus One
24.6 fps ∼19% -31%
HTC One M9
32.88 fps ∼25% -7%
Platform (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
171.6 Points ∼2%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
191.9 Points ∼3% +12%
OnePlus One
140.6 Points ∼2% -18%
HTC One M9
154.1 Points ∼2% -10%
Storage (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
5285 KB/s ∼5%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
7878 KB/s ∼8% +49%
OnePlus One
7193 KB/s ∼7% +36%
HTC One M9
5862 KB/s ∼6% +11%
Memory Latency (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
2884 KOps/s ∼36%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
5030 KOps/s ∼62% +74%
OnePlus One
6738 KOps/s ∼83% +134%
HTC One M9
2302 KOps/s ∼29% -20%
Memory Bandwidth (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
7087 MB/s ∼34%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
10467 MB/s ∼50% +48%
OnePlus One
5485 MB/s ∼26% -23%
HTC One M9
7609 MB/s ∼36% +7%
CoreMark-PRO/HPC (Base) (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1862 Points ∼29%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
4366 Points ∼68% +134%
OnePlus One
2464 Points ∼38% +32%
HTC One M9
2296 Points ∼36% +23%
Device Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
7143 Points ∼27%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
10328 Points ∼40% +45%
OnePlus One
7169 Points ∼27% 0%
HTC One M9
7158 Points ∼27% 0%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
732 Points ∼43%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1092 Points ∼64% +49%
Google Nexus 6
682 Points ∼40% -7%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
778 Points ∼46% +6%
OnePlus One
661 Points ∼39% -10%
HTC One M9
789 Points ∼47% +8%
Graphics (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
2850 Points ∼31%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
2389 Points ∼26% -16%
Google Nexus 6
2130 Points ∼23% -25%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
2489 Points ∼27% -13%
OnePlus One
2382 Points ∼26% -16%
HTC One M9
3210 Points ∼35% +13%
Memory (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1290 Points ∼27%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
536 Points ∼11% -58%
Google Nexus 6
421 Points ∼9% -67%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
1426 Points ∼30% +11%
OnePlus One
587 Points ∼12% -54%
HTC One M9
933 Points ∼19% -28%
System (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1781 Points ∼17%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
2038 Points ∼20% +14%
Google Nexus 6
1604 Points ∼16% -10%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
3989 Points ∼39% +124%
OnePlus One
1768 Points ∼17% -1%
HTC One M9
1672 Points ∼16% -6%
Overall (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1479 Points ∼34%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1299 Points ∼30% -12%
Google Nexus 6
995 Points ∼23% -33%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
1821 Points ∼42% +23%
OnePlus One
1131 Points ∼26% -24%
HTC One M9
1410 Points ∼33% -5%
PassMark PerformanceTest Mobile V1
3D Graphics Tests (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1591 Points ∼33%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1984 Points ∼42% +25%
Google Nexus 6
1129 Points ∼24% -29%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
2345 Points ∼49% +47%
HTC One M9
1703 Points ∼36% +7%
2D Graphics Tests (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
4992 Points ∼27%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
2609 Points ∼14% -48%
Google Nexus 6
2283 Points ∼12% -54%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
5274 Points ∼28% +6%
HTC One M9
4643 Points ∼25% -7%
Memory Tests (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
6809 Points ∼0%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
5147 Points ∼0% -24%
Google Nexus 6
3530 Points ∼0% -48%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
6924 Points ∼0% +2%
HTC One M9
6248 Points ∼0% -8%
Disk Tests (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
20352 Points ∼15%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
23184 Points ∼17% +14%
Google Nexus 6
19076 Points ∼14% -6%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
68872 Points ∼50% +238%
HTC One M9
42249 Points ∼31% +108%
CPU Tests (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
115733 Points ∼25%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
43696 Points ∼10% -62%
Google Nexus 6
13931 Points ∼3% -88%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
176225 Points ∼39% +52%
HTC One M9
112124 Points ∼25% -3%
System (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
6362 Points ∼42%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
5622 Points ∼37% -12%
Google Nexus 6
3602 Points ∼24% -43%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
8438 Points ∼55% +33%
HTC One M9
6599 Points ∼43% +4%

Legend

 
LG G Flex 2 Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MSM8994, Qualcomm Adreno 430, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Apple iPhone 6 Plus Apple A8, PowerVR GX6450, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
Google Nexus 6 Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 APQ8084, Qualcomm Adreno 420, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Samsung Exynos 7420 Octa, ARM Mali-T760 MP8, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
OnePlus One Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 MSM8974AC, Qualcomm Adreno 330, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
HTC One M9 Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MSM8994, Qualcomm Adreno 430, 32 GB eMMC Flash

The Adreno 430 is a very speedy graphics unit with a clock rate of 650 MHz and is only outclassed by the PowerVR GX6450 in Apple's iPhone 6 Plus. We will ascertain whether the graphics card throttles under "Temperature". All other smartphones are clearly surpassed in some parts. The 3D performance should also be enough for demanding mobile games.

3DMark
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
10097 Points ∼13%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
9473 Points ∼12% -6%
Google Nexus 6
18113 Points ∼23% +79%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
19260 Points ∼24% +91%
OnePlus One
13167 Points ∼17% +30%
HTC One M9
10432 (min: 10432, max: 10786) Points ∼13% +3%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
34201 Points ∼7%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
23937 Points ∼5% -30%
Google Nexus 6
25480 Points ∼5% -25%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
23954 Points ∼5% -30%
OnePlus One
18074 Points ∼4% -47%
HTC One M9
34429 (min: 34429, max: 34485) Points ∼7% +1%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
22346 Points ∼11%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
17873 Points ∼9% -20%
Google Nexus 6
23368 Points ∼11% +5%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
22723 Points ∼11% +2%
OnePlus One
16692 Points ∼8% -25%
HTC One M9
22783 (min: 22783, max: 23171) Points ∼11% +2%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
41 fps ∼2%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
44.8 fps ∼3% +9%
Google Nexus 6
39 fps ∼2% -5%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
53 fps ∼3% +29%
OnePlus One
28 fps ∼2% -32%
HTC One M9
49 fps ∼3% +20%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
41 fps ∼9%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
52.4 fps ∼11% +28%
Google Nexus 6
28 fps ∼6% -32%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
32 fps ∼7% -22%
OnePlus One
29 fps ∼6% -29%
HTC One M9
50 fps ∼11% +22%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
19 fps ∼3%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
18.8 fps ∼3% -1%
Google Nexus 6
19 fps ∼3% 0%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
25 fps ∼5% +32%
OnePlus One
12 fps ∼2% -37%
HTC One M9
23 fps ∼4% +21%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
20 fps ∼5%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
30.6 fps ∼8% +53%
Google Nexus 6
12 fps ∼3% -40%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
15 fps ∼4% -25%
OnePlus One
12 fps ∼3% -40%
HTC One M9
24 fps ∼7% +20%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
15 fps ∼3%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
13 fps ∼2% -13%
HTC One M9
16 fps ∼3% +7%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
16 fps ∼9%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
6.1 fps ∼3% -62%
HTC One M9
17 fps ∼10% +6%
Basemark ES 3.1 / Metal - offscreen Overall Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
255 Points ∼14%
HTC One M9
300 Points ∼16% +18%
Basemark X 1.1
High Quality (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
18876 Points ∼43%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
27059 Points ∼61% +43%
OnePlus One
12411 Points ∼28% -34%
HTC One M9
19122 Points ∼43% +1%
Medium Quality (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
28578 Points ∼64%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
38701 Points ∼86% +35%
OnePlus One
23226 Points ∼52% -19%
HTC One M9
27968 Points ∼62% -2%
Epic Citadel
Ultra High Quality (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
49.3 fps ∼80%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
53.8 fps ∼87% +9%
OnePlus One
50.1 fps ∼81% +2%
HTC One M9
58.2 fps ∼94% +18%
High Quality (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
49.7 fps ∼82%
OnePlus One
56 fps ∼92% +13%
High Performance (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
48.9 fps ∼80%
OnePlus One
57.1 fps ∼94% +17%

Internet browsing is certainly one of the strengths of LG's G Flex 2. Websites are opened very quickly and there are no speed problems with animations that are based on web technologies.

Sunspider - 1.0 Total Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1433 ms * ∼36%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
347.4 ms * ∼9% +76%
Google Nexus 6
784 ms * ∼19% +45%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
347.1 ms * ∼9% +76%
OnePlus One
2180.1 ms * ∼54% -52%
HTC One M9
839.7 ms * ∼21% +41%
Google V8 Ver. 7 - Google V8 Ver. 7 Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
8097 Points ∼41%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
8604 Points ∼44% +6%
Google Nexus 6
6559 Points ∼34% -19%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
9334 Points ∼48% +15%
OnePlus One
4681 Points ∼24% -42%
HTC One M9
6440 Points ∼33% -20%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
7246 Points ∼15%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
7276 Points ∼15% 0%
Google Nexus 6
5271 Points ∼11% -27%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
8650 Points ∼17% +19%
HTC One M9
6493 Points ∼13% -10%
WebXPRT 2013
Offline Notes (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
846 ms * ∼18%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
499 ms * ∼10% +41%
Google Nexus 6
1158 ms * ∼24% -37%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
929.4 ms * ∼19% -10%
OnePlus One
1799 ms * ∼38% -113%
HTC One M9
1132.1 ms * ∼24% -34%
Stocks Dashboard (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
849 ms * ∼23%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
338 ms * ∼9% +60%
Google Nexus 6
1231 ms * ∼33% -45%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
648.5 ms * ∼17% +24%
OnePlus One
1488.1 ms * ∼40% -75%
HTC One M9
1087.6 ms * ∼29% -28%
Face Detection (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1801 ms * ∼15%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
1463.2 ms * ∼12% +19%
Google Nexus 6
1736 ms * ∼14% +4%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
830.5 ms * ∼7% +54%
OnePlus One
2123.9 ms * ∼18% -18%
HTC One M9
2237.3 ms * ∼18% -24%
Photo Effects (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
1233 ms * ∼14%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
904.7 ms * ∼10% +27%
Google Nexus 6
898 ms * ∼10% +27%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
371.8 ms * ∼4% +70%
OnePlus One
945.7 ms * ∼11% +23%
HTC One M9
1585.1 ms * ∼18% -29%
Overall Score (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
370 Points ∼16%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
604 Points ∼27% +63%
Google Nexus 6
340 Points ∼15% -8%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
634 Points ∼28% +71%
OnePlus One
273 Points ∼12% -26%
HTC One M9
287 Points ∼13% -22%
Peacekeeper - --- (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
752 Points ∼12%
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
2613 Points ∼42% +247%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
1337 Points ∼22% +78%
OnePlus One
760 Points ∼12% +1%
HTC One M9
1043 Points ∼17% +39%

* ... smaller is better

The storage is not quite as fast as in Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge, but it is still faster than all other Android comparison devices. The read speeds are particularly impressive, and thus it is rather surprising that loading occasionally takes quite some time. More about this can be read under "Games".

AndroBench 3-5
Random Write 4KB (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
10 MB/s ∼6%
Google Nexus 6
1.49 MB/s ∼1% -85%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
19.84 MB/s ∼12% +98%
OnePlus One
10.42 MB/s ∼6% +4%
HTC One M9
13.91 MB/s ∼8% +39%
Random Read 4KB (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
19 MB/s ∼11%
Google Nexus 6
7.85 MB/s ∼5% -59%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
77.43 MB/s ∼45% +308%
OnePlus One
18.27 MB/s ∼11% -4%
HTC One M9
20.66 MB/s ∼12% +9%
Sequential Write 256KB (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
68 MB/s ∼30%
Google Nexus 6
18.46 MB/s ∼8% -73%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
139.12 MB/s ∼61% +105%
OnePlus One
159.72 MB/s ∼70% +135%
HTC One M9
123.81 MB/s ∼54% +82%
Sequential Read 256KB (sort by value)
LG G Flex 2
212 MB/s ∼25%
Google Nexus 6
25.78 MB/s ∼3% -88%
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
319.25 MB/s ∼38% +51%
OnePlus One
223.64 MB/s ∼27% +5%
HTC One M9
235.14 MB/s ∼28% +11%

Games

We tested the gaming performance with the graphically demanding racing game “Asphalt 8”. The relatively long loading times that LG's G Flex 2 needed struck us right away. While micro-stutters were noticed in the intro sequence, everything ran relatively smoothly during the race itself in both medium and high details. More basic games like “Angry Birds” will be playable without any problems.

Virtually always smoothly rendered even in high details during the race: "Asphalt 8".
Virtually always smoothly rendered even in high details during the race: "Asphalt 8".

Emissions

Processor performance in the stress test
Processor performance in the stress test
GPU performance in the stress test
GPU performance in the stress test

Temperature

The temperature development is almost identical to that of the precursor. LG's G Flex 2 reaches an absolute maximum of 40.2 degrees Celsius (~104 °F). The maximum temperature of 30.2 degrees Celsius (~86 °F) is reached while idling. Thus, the review sample's overall temperature increase is lightly palpable but never unpleasant.

We check whether the full performance can be retrieved via the battery test of GFXBenchmark. The graphs show quite clearly that the performance decreases gradually. For example, over time, the processor's full Turbo clock is not achieved, and some cores are even completely disabled. The GPU also throttles after prolonged load, which explains the lower benchmark results.

Max. Load
 40.2 °C
104 F
39.4 °C
103 F
35.3 °C
96 F
 
 40 °C
104 F
39.7 °C
103 F
34.8 °C
95 F
 
 38.2 °C
101 F
38 °C
100 F
33.5 °C
92 F
 
Maximum: 40.2 °C = 104 F
Average: 37.7 °C = 100 F
32.9 °C
91 F
35 °C
95 F
37.5 °C
100 F
33.6 °C
92 F
35.1 °C
95 F
37.7 °C
100 F
33.6 °C
92 F
34.8 °C
95 F
35.8 °C
96 F
Maximum: 37.7 °C = 100 F
Average: 35.1 °C = 95 F
Power Supply (max.)  36.6 °C = 98 F | Room Temperature 22.1 °C = 72 F | Voltcraft IR-260

Speakers

The speaker is still rather average. Although the maximum volume is not bad and the sound does not distort at the maximum setting, there are hardly any bass and the mids are quite weak. Trebles and sibilants are often unpleasantly emphasized. Since the speaker is on the rear, the sound might muffle when the smartphone is placed on a soft surface or a finger accidentally covers the speaker.

In that case, the decent sounding in-ear headphone "QuadBeat 2" that LG includes should be used. Although a few more deep tones would not have hurt, it does not sound bad for an included headset. The 3.5 mm jack allows users to  connect their own headphone  to enjoy a good sound.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

LG's G Flex 2 features a quick-charge function. The battery is allegedly charged at fifty percent within half an hour. Unfortunately, we could not check this because the included power supply was faulty. However, we achieved 34% after half an hour using a slightly weaker replacement PSU, which is not a bad rate.

The G Flex 2 does not exactly stand out with energy saving when depleting the battery. The smartphone's power consumption is not measurable when the phone is off and only 0.1 watts are consumed in standby. However, LG's G Flex 2 belongs to the most energy devouring devices in the comparison with a minimum consumption of 1.4 while idling. Its maximum idle consumption is as high as 3.1 watts, which is a very high rate. However, we should also keep in mind that some comparison devices have a much larger screen. The smartphone consumes a maximum of 8.8 watts.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0 / 0.1 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 1.4 / 2.3 / 3.1 Watt
Load midlight 7.8 / 8.8 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Voltcraft VC 870

Battery Runtime

The smaller casing also involves a smaller battery capacity compared with LG's G Flex. The successor now only supplies 11.4 Wh. Compared with the comparison devices, some of which are larger, the battery capacity is not bad, but the battery life of LG's G Flex is rather average. Although an almost 10:41 hour of Wi-Fi browsing is a decent time, it cannot keep up with, for example, OnePlus One. The full load runtimes are also short: It stops after 2:23 hours.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
21h 14min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
10h 41min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
12h 04min
Load (maximum brightness)
2h 23min
LG G Flex 2
Adreno 430, 810 MSM8994, 16 GB eMMC Flash
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
PowerVR GX6450, A8, 64 GB eMMC Flash
Google Nexus 6
Adreno 420, 805 APQ8084, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
Mali-T760 MP8, 7420 Octa, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
OnePlus One
Adreno 330, 801 MSM8974AC, 64 GB eMMC Flash
HTC One M9
Adreno 430, 810 MSM8994, 32 GB eMMC Flash
Battery Runtime
15%
-8%
1%
27%
-15%
Reader / Idle
1274
1436
13%
1153
-9%
1349
6%
1568
23%
805
-37%
H.264
724
675
-7%
652
-10%
417
-42%
893
23%
421
-42%
WiFi v1.3
641
534
-17%
963
50%
348
-46%
Load
143
199
39%
135
-6%
224
57%
160
12%
236
65%
WiFi
777
601
1126
573

Pros

+ Ergonomic casing
+ Flexible, unbreakable chassis
+ Removable back-cover...
+ ...with self-healing effect
+ Infinitely high contrast
+ Decent camera equipment
+ Good software configuration
+ Low temperatures
+ No power consumption when turned off

Cons

- Rear-sided controls
- Dark screen
- Limited cell coverage
- Awkward inputting of umlauts
- Relatively expensive

Verdict

In review: LG G Flex 2. Review sample courtesy of LG Germany.
In review: LG G Flex 2. Review sample courtesy of LG Germany.

Buyers have to pony up quite a bit for the uniqueness of LG's G Flex 2. This was already one of the biggest criticisms of the precursor, and our present review sample clearly lags behind other high-end devices in some points while the price is very self-confident. Of course, bending the smartphone without any damage will impress friends. Owners of the iPhone 6 Plus or the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge will probably pull the saddest faces - keyword "Bendgate"...

Ideas like the self-healing back cover and laser auto-focus are also very innovative. However, LG's G Flex 2 involves making compromises in other places. For example, the integrated storage of 16 GB is rather tight, other phablets offer higher resolutions and brighter screens, and the rear-sided controls are not always practical.

The device is available at a starting price of 599 Euros (~$638) on the Internet, which is on par with Google's Nexus 6. The price of LG's G Flex 2 still cannot compete with the low-priced OnePlus One.

This is a device for tech geeks who are looking for something out-of-the-ordinary. The second edition of LG's G Flex is still an eye-catcher. However, more practical devices are available for those simply looking for a phablet.

LG G Flex 2 - 04/09/2015 v4(old)
Florian Wimmer

Chassis
88%
Keyboard
69 / 75 → 92%
Pointing Device
93%
Connectivity
47 / 60 → 78%
Weight
92%
Battery
92%
Display
80%
Games Performance
68 / 63 → 100%
Application Performance
45 / 70 → 64%
Temperature
89%
Noise
100%
Audio
59 / 91 → 65%
Camera
85%
Average
77%
87%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > LG G Flex 2 Smartphone Review
Florian Wimmer, 2015-04-16 (Update: 2018-05-15)