LG V30 v Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Those looking for large, powerhouse Android devices will no doubt have both the LG V30 and Samsung Galaxy Note 8 on their radars. These two behemoths come with top-end hardware, performance, and prices.

But on which one should you spend your hard-earned money? We compare the giants of the Android world.

The LG V30 continues the company’s 'V' line of large phones, which lean heavily in the direction of photography and video capture.

Samsung on the other hand has bravely launched a new Note model after the disasterous Note 7, which had to be withdrawn from sale after a number of units caught fire or exploded.

It does show a deep commitment to the Note range from Samsung, and one that looks like it could be well rewarded. But LG has been making great strides in its hardware in recent years, so these titans are worthy adversaries.

LG V30 vs Note 8: Price and Availability

Premium smartphones are never going to be cheap, but the Note 8 does take things into new territory with its whopping £869 price tag. You'll likely be buying it on a contract and so the price may not bother you so much, but buying the Note 8 SIM-free is still the cheapest way to buy it, of course.

Now, to be fair, you’re getting a whole lot of technology for your money, and the Note range is practically a PC these days, especially thanks to the optional DeX station that can dock the unit to a display, keyboard, and mouse setup.

lgv30 v samsung note 8

That being said, a DeX dock will set you back an additional £99, which brings the cost nearer £1000.

LG’s V30 seems reasonable in comparison, but it still weighs in at a shade under £700, so these handsets are not for the faint of wallet.

The Galaxy Note 8 is available to buy now. There’s no official date for the LG V30, but you can register your interest with Carphone Warehouse, and we expect the unit to appear in shops in the next month or so.

LG V30 vs Note 8: Features and Design

Displays

Obviously one of the most standout features of these devices is their displays. The LG V30 boasts a 6in OLED panel, which has rich, bright colours, and a 1440 x 2880 resolution for crisp text and images.

LGV30 v Samsung Note 8

The modern design reduces the bezels to almost non-existent, which LG claims gives the front of the unit a makeup of 83 percent screen and 17 percent body.  

Samsung is no slouch in this area either, with the taller Note 8 besting its rival by employing a 6.3in Quad HD Super AMOLED display. Again, the bezels are kept to a bare minimum, while the screen delivers gorgeous visuals.

LG V30 v Samsung Note 8

As both of these are phablets, it’s not surprising that they’re on the large size. The slim bodies make them comfortable to hold, but using them really is a two-handed affair.

The V30’s dimensions of 151.7 x 75.4 x 7.4 mm make it slimmer and shorter that the Note 8’s 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6mm, with the latter having an excuse due to the S-Pen stored within its frame.

S-Pen

Samsung has led the way with smartphone stylus for some time now, and the current S-Pen that accompanies the Note 8 is as precise and easy to use as it’s ever been. It marks the Note range out from its competitors, adding a new layer of productivity to the premium device.

lg v30 v samsung note 8

Hi-Fi DAC

LG has a trick of its own under the hood of the V30 though, with the inclusion of a Hi-Fi Quad DAC, that’s sure to appeal to audiophiles who want top quality sounds from their mobile device. 

Water resistance

IP68 ratings for both devices mean that can survive a dip in water with no ill effects. Very good to know when you’re spending this kind of money on a device.

lg v30 v samsung note 8

Processor, memory, storage, and OS

Performance-wise the V30 and Note 8 have comparable specs, with the former utilising the latest Snapdragon 835 processor and 4GB of RAM, while Samsung has installed its own Exynos 8895 chip that also appears in the Galaxy S8 and S8+. 6GB of RAM gives it a slight edge over the V30, but we expect the two to be neck and neck in the speed stakes.

The storage on offer is similar too, with either handset containing 64GB built-in and a MicroSD card slot offering an expansion of up to 256GB.   

LG has announced that the V30 will arrive with Android 7.1.2, while the Note 8 is marginally behind with 7.1.1. Hopefully both will move up to the newly revealed Android 8 not long after release.

Cameras

Another area where the handsets have strong showings is that of cameras. Both come with dual lens units for the main optics.

The LG V30 has a 16MP f/1.6 standard lens paired with a 13MP f/1.9 wide angle variant. These combine to offer 2160p video at 30fps, and plenty of scope for crystal clear still images.

lg v30 v samsung note 8

Samsung has fitted the Note 8 with two 12MP cameras, one a f/1.7 wide-angle lens, accompanied by a f/2.4 telephoto lens. Dual optical image stabilisation should keep things steady, and the 4K video at 30fps makes it a powerful tool for capturing those important moments.

LG V30 vs Note 8: Specifications

  LG V30 Samsung Note 8
Price £699 (US pricing TBC) £869 (US$930)
Operating System Android Nougat 7.1.2 Android Nougat 7.1.1
Display 6.0in OLED, 1440 x 2880 touchscreen, 537ppi 6.3in, Quad-HD, 18:5:9, 1440 x 2960, 521ppi, Super AMOLED, Always-On display
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, octa-core Exynos 8895, octa-core
GPU Adreno 540 graphics ARM Mali-G71 MP20 
RAM 4GB 6GB LPDDR4
Storage 64GB or 128GB 64GB
Primary Camera Dual 16MP main camera (3-Axis, laser and phase detection autofocus), support for 2160p video at 30fps 12MP dual-lens (f/1.7 wide-angle + f/2.4 telephoto with 2x optical zoom), OIS, records 4K video at 30fps
Selfie Camera 13MP front camera 8MP f/1.7
Wi-Fi   802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual band, Wi-Fi Direct, DNLA, hotspot 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4/ 5 GHz), VHT 80 MU-MIMO, 1024QAM
Bluetooh 5.0, A2DP, LE, aptx HD 5.0, ANT+
LTE 4G LTE 4G LTE
SIM card Single SIM (Nano-SIM) or Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by) Single SIM (Nano-SIM) Dual SIM (Nano-SIM)
Battery 3300mAh non-removable 3300mAh non-removable
USB USB 3.1, Type-C 1.0 with fast charging (Quick Charge 3.0) USB 3.1, Type -C, fast charging, wireless charging
MicroSD MicroSD support up to 256GB MicroSD support up to 256GB
Water resistance rating IP68 IP68
Dimensions 151.7 x 75.4 x 7.4 mm 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6 mm
Weight 158g 195g

LG V30: Specs

  • 6in 18:9 Quad-HD+ (2880x1440, 538ppi) OLED FullVision display, Gorilla Glass 5
  • Android Nougat 7.1.2 with UX 6.0+ and Google Assistant
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
  • 4GB LPDDR4
  • 64GB UFS 2.0, microSD up to 2TB
  • 16Mp f/1.6 + 13Mp f/1.9 dual-camera, 5Mp selfie camera
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, USB-C
  • IP68, MIL-STD 810G compliant, 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC, face/voice/fingerprint recognition
  • 3,300mAh, wired and wireless charging, Quick Charge 3.0
  • 151.7x75.4x7.3mm
  • 6in 18:9 Quad-HD+ (2880x1440, 538ppi) OLED FullVision display, Gorilla Glass 5
  • Android Nougat 7.1.2 with UX 6.0+ and Google Assistant
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
  • 4GB LPDDR4
  • 64GB UFS 2.0, microSD up to 2TB
  • 16Mp f/1.6 + 13Mp f/1.9 dual-camera, 5Mp selfie camera
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, USB-C
  • IP68, MIL-STD 810G compliant, 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC, face/voice/fingerprint recognition
  • 3,300mAh, wired and wireless charging, Quick Charge 3.0
  • 151.7x75.4x7.3mm

OUR VERDICT

The Samsung Note range pretty much invented the phablet market, and it still makes the best use of the form factor. The S-Pen remains a standout feature which helps differentiate Notes from their rivals, and the addition of a DeX dock can literally make the Note your new PC. So, if you want the best-in-class then it’s the one to go for.

But, that price is not something to be taken lightly. Especially when you consider that the LG V30 offers many of the same performance benefits of a larger device, but for nearly £200 less.

Sure, you don’t get the S-Pen, but you do get the built-in Hi-Fi DAC to improve audio quality. Therefore, it’s a matter of how you intend to use the device. Want to draw and have multiple apps open at once? Choose the Note 8. Want a large screen, premium performance, and to save a bit of money? The LG V30 makes a compelling case.