LG Laptop Brand Review
The parent LG brand is a household name in the electronics and household appliance space, and its laptops are not too far behind.
LG offers a lineup of laptops that are lithe and incredibly light, but still durable enough to be taken on a roll.
Their laptops serve up all the niceties and nuances in design and functionality that make them writhe seamlessly from office desks to coffee tables.
And while they are not powerhouses in any department, they still render a decent account of themselves.
LGs’ Laptop rollouts target mainstream penetration via a couple of series that lean towards office and multimedia utility, with the occasional gaming to boot.
The LG X NOTE has dropped out of the roster, but in its heyday, it was the LCD-display notebook computer series that served up the LT20, with its elegant design, 12.1-inch display, and a firewire connection, the LG Haier laptop was similarly short-lived, the lesser said about this laptop, the better.
And while the LG E-Book, with its OLED display and methyl alcohol solution battery, did not even get to make it past its concept design stage, the LG Gram series has weathered the storm to become a major player in the laptop space. This line of laptops fronts a seeming devotion to serving up ultra-portables with handy builds, enduring batteries, and a strong connectivity suit, props that set them up for office use.
The recently introduced LG Ultra PC Series completes the lineup. The laptops in this series are designed to meet the entertainment needs of its users, they come equipped with multimedia-centric hardware gear, while still sporting the signature lean and lightweight frame.
LG puts out some bold-looking price stickers on its laptops, not surprising in the least, their Laptops are mostly on the high-end spectrum of things.
Still, it is hard to justify the prices that they go for, and even harder to find a laptop in their lineup below $1000.
For $1,799, you can get the “Tiger Lake” processor update of the LG Gram 17, its sibling, the Ultra 17 with a Core i7 processor goes out a notch lower at $1,700, but can be sold for $1500 if you’re down with a downgrade to a Core i5 processor.
The payoff is pound-for-pound(or dollars) as per the tradeoff, although you will lose out on some processor power.
The LG Gram 13-inch, the smallest display in the Gram lineup still sells for $1045.21, but its spec and power are bettered by the Dell XPS and HP X360 in the same 13-inch category. In contrast, the LG Gram 15″ will leave the shelves at about $1000, it is clearly not a matter of screen estate, but of performance level.
Design and Build Quality
The LG brand appears to have an obsession with the ultra-portable and compact build, each new rollout is made to shed some heft before they turn out on the shelves.
Their laptops turn out with a relatively lighter weight, for every form factor and screen size on offer, for example, the Gram 17(0.7 by 15 by 10.2) weighs less when compared to other 17-inchers like the Dell XPS 17 and the Dell Inspiron 17 3000.
A majority of the laptops from the Gram lineup draw ideas from the same playbook, the chassis is almost always made from magnesium alloy. In some cases-or casings, there is additional help from nano-carbon fusings-as with the Gram 15, which further helps to reinforce its incredibly light profile and weight of 2.4pounds.
Plastic also makes subdued appearances on some of the earlier models, like on the keyboard deck of the Gram 15.
On the other hand, the Ultra PC series mostly draws heavily from the lightweight and rigid material structure of aluminium alloy, the exterior mostly turns out gray, with a matte finish, although other color profiles can always be anodized to their surfaces.
They also weigh more than their counterparts in the Gram series, the LG Ultra PC 17″ tips the scales at around 2kg, about 600g more than the LG Gram 17″.
The convertibles, in almost all their models, get a good dip in the magnesium alloy pool, they mostly get a good deal, the hinges are well built, and they do not make those cringy creaky sounds that dog some of their clamshells.
They are lighter than most 2-in-1s in their category, the big players such as the Gram 16 2-in-1, Asus ZenBook Flip 15, and the Dell XPS 15 2-in-1, in that order all weigh in significantly more than the LG Gram 16 2-in-1.
Durability and Reliability
The laptops make extensive usage of Magnesium and Aluminum alloy in their chassis, the result is a sturdy and robust build that is rigid in all the right places.
Many of the laptops from the likes of LG are made to undergo vigorous durability and torture tests before they hit the road.
The Gram 17 and 16 are LGs’ poster laptops for durability, they are both MIL-STD 810G test standard certified, meaning that they can survive unfriendly weather conditions and the impact of torture shocks and dust.
Away from the LG Gram 17, its 17″ counterpart in the Ultra PC series also fares well in the durability department, the nano-carbon magnesium alloy casing is both lightweight and solid, similar to those employed in constructing aircraft material. And the Phillip screws on its undercarriage can be easily removed whenever there is a need to replace or service any component part of the system.
The Corning Gorilla technology also provides security for the screens on some of LGs’ laptops, although it may present the display with some glossiness.
Battery life is a relative area of strength for LG laptops, a number of their laptops-the LG Gram 17 for example, come with a 2,560 × 1,600 pixel resolution display, a sweet spot in-between the sharply contrasting energy consumption levels of the Full HD and Ultra HD resolutions.
Their battery life betters the performance of rival laptops in their category, for example, the Gram 13’s 12 hours 29 minutes edges the Dell XPS 13 (10: 34), Razer Stealth (9:17), and trounces the HP Spectre 13, (8: 15).
The LG Gram 15-inches at, 15 hours, adds in about 2 and half more hours to the tally, but goes out one hour less than the LG ultra PC 17, with its 72Wh of battery power making for a compelling argument.
It almost seems like the batteries in the LG Lineup make twofold leaps in staying power with each new bigger-screen rollout, if we are to go by the feelers from LG.
The laptops in the LG lineup do not tick any boxes in the graphic power checklist or processor checklist, but they are certainly no slackers, although you might scratch out gaming from the options. There are a few standouts from the lineup, the Gram 17 easily takes the performance crown with its Intel Evo Platform, powered by the new 11th Gen Intel Core processor.
This laptop is LGs’ belated answer to the high-fliers like Apple’s Macbook or HP’s Envy series. The Iris Xe graphics used does punch above its weight, and it performs 1.8× better than its predecessor.
It still has to be said that Processor performance is not LG’s strongest suit, it does seem like the price to pay for the slim and lightweight structure of their laptops.
Their counterparts on the other side of the competition fare better in terms of performance, for example, the high-fliers in the MacBooks and the Dell XPS series are yards ahead of most LG offerings in any configuration and screen size on offer.
Perhaps, only the LG Gram 17-inch can put up a strong showing on benchmark tests and real-life performance. The LG Ultra PC 17″ comes with 10th Gen Core i7-10510U, on paper it should be just fine, but it surprisingly flatters to impress in reality.
A complete departure from integrated graphics and a switch to AMD-based Ryzen Processors will perhaps change the narrative, as is the case with the LG 13″ Ultra PC laptop; with a 16GB memory to boot, this laptop will power through a ton of tasks and a glut of games with relative ease.
On the flip side, the average LG laptop will blitz past everyday tasks like word processing, video playback, web streaming and even light gaming, more demanding ones can only be tackled at lower resolutions and reduced performance settings.
Support and warranty
LG offers a standard one-year warranty to cover strictly for defects in workmanship and materials, The coverage period kicks in from the first day of purchase, and it extends to consumable and expendable parts of the device.
Currently, there is no provision for an extended service plan for its laptops, but there is technical support over phone calls and social media interactions to continually keep your laptop on a smooth sail.
LGs’ support website tells you from the onset that you’ll get to interact with bots, but there is human presence over the support bandwidth, and a robust online community for peer-to-peer interactions.
On average, they fare above average in the support department, and even though the LG brand has a lot on its plate, there is a copious supply of human and material resources to meet the needs of every customer.
LG laptops are not flawless, and they shouldn’t be, what with their emphasis on aesthetics and portability for the most part of their design system.
The Performance levels will take a hit or two, as there is precious little headroom for hardware and system components to pack in the punches, the gas tank is bereft of volume, so don’t expect your processors to be setting or shattering any speed records, even on turbo-boost.
The prices are a little on the high side too, very few of their Laptops go below the $1000 mark, and it is even more frustrating when you compare the prices of equal spec’d laptops from other brands.
Cooling is also an area of concern for the laptops, the Gram 16 gets its fair share, its copper heat pipes are short on length and shorn of effect, and it does not bode well on the overall system health.
Then there is the small field of configuration options for their laptops, in fact, the LG gram 17 is only available in only one configuration, you’re simply stuck with what you get, although it has to be said that the Gram 17 is in a good place.
In a Nutshell
The LG brand tries hard to tag along with the best in the laptop business, it gets to play catchup as it is barely coming off the springs, and thankfully, it is no slacker.
With the LG Gram and the Ultra PC series rollouts, the laptop maker boasts of some of the most lightweight and efficient laptops in the market.
And while they are relatively pricey, there is ample value and power in this line of laptops to meet your productivity targets and entertainment needs.