The K4 is the entry model of the new smartphone LG Electronics K range which also includes the K7 and K10 we’ve reviewed in the past few weeks. The K4 has definitely specifications compared to its price: a 4.5 inch screen, a quad core processor and 1 GB of RAM. Let’s see how it behaves in our review.
Hardware, Materials, Ergonomics:
Let’s start with the packaging, reduced to the essentials, where we find only a car charger with USB port and a data cable. Missing your headset. Definitely good ergonomics thanks to size contained and at a weight of just 119 grams. Any phone is made of plastic with a metal profile. The back housing is also made of plastic and has a particular texture textured which improves grip. Good Assembly, there are squeaks but the side buttons that flicker doesn’t give a sense of great quality.
On the right side we find the power button on the bottom the main microphone, 3.5 mm audio jack and the micro USB port on the right side buttons for volume and on top the second microphone for noise suppression system. On the back the 5 megapixel main camera with Aperture f/2.8, LED Flash and auto focus, down a small speaker system. On the front we have only the 2 megapixel camera with Aperture f/2.8. There are no nor the light sensor or proximity nor the notification LED. The function keys are displayed and can be customized through settings.
Removing the back cover to access the battery compartment where there are also the slot for the Sim into micro and microSD format with which we can expand further 32 GB the 8 GB of onboard memory of which slightly less than 4 users. Storage space is definitely limited although we can move something on your memory card, but it cannot be set as default write disk.
- System: Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with LG UX 4.0
- Display: 4.5 LCD 480 × 854 pixels and resolution “at 217ppi
- Processor: Mediatek MT6735M 1 GHz quad core Cortex A-53
- GPU: Mali T720
- RAM1 GB LPDDR3
- Memoryinternal: 8 GB expandable via microSD
- Camerarear: 5 megapixel camera with Aperture f/2.8
- Camerafront: 2 megapixel camera with Aperture f/2.8 dedicated audio Chip: Hi-
- Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 LTE Cat. 4, b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.0 4.1/USB
- Size: 131.9 x 66.7 x 8.9 mm
- Weight: 119 grams
- Battery: Removable rechargeable
The processor is a Mediatek MT6735M, 1 GHz quad core Cortex A-53 with Mali GPU T720 and 1 GB DDR3 RAM. The user interface seems to be fast enough to use but there are often annoying slowdowns and ricaricamementi especially when we have several applications running or when we get out of heavier applications. Regarding connectivity we have the Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, USB 2.0 High Speed (MTP/PTP no OTG), Bluetooth and A-GPS receiver 4.1.
Due to limitations of storage space I have installed only Real Racing 3 that is recognized to a graphic detail optimized for display resolution, but it has a particularly high not framerate that allows you to have a good gaming experience.
The display is a 4.5-inch diagonal LCD with a resolution of 480 × 854 pixels and a density of at 217ppi. The Panel is not well defined and has a decidedly limited viewing angle, especially tilting it downwards.
Holding it horizontally, playing or watching a content multimedale, eyes perceive two different brightness levels making the pleasant little vision. In the front view, the colors are saturated and there are enough adjustability.
Drums, Audio and reception:
Rechargeable lithium-ion battery. With a use quite intense manages to make us cover a day with about 4 hours of active display. A simple energy saving system that reduces the brightness only and excludes the vibration.
Three-band 2 g, 3 g bands are supported/21.1 Mbps HSPA and LTE five bands under category 4 with download speed up to 150Mbps. Via earbud volume is quite high but the audio is slightly enclosed. Using System speaker volume is low and there are some distortions. Good audio quality as perceived by our interlocutors instead thanks to the Suppression of ambient noise.
No problem regarding the cellular network reception and Wi-Fi.
The OS is Android in version 5.1.1 Lollipop with UI LG UX 4.0 deprived of some features we’ve seen in higher end devices. Can lock unlock the display by KnockOn or Knock Code andzoom in some applications using pinch.
Don’t miss the possibility to increase or decrease the number of homescreen, personalize them with widgets, change the icons and themes that can be downloaded also from LG Smart World. Also present a cleaner EasyHome useful for those approaching for the first time to a smartphone.
Possibility to customize the quick links in the notification drop down where we also find the slide for adjusting volume and brightness. Among other settings, we also have the capability of reading of the callers and messages.
The keyboard is to LG with 4 rows of buttons, customizable sizes, automatic spell checker and gesture controls. Also found via Google speech recognition and text entry via swipe. Can also customize the color and set a layout with 3 x 4 keyboard with T9.
To display off, press one of the volume keys are accessed quickly to the camera. To display lit, pressing volume keys you access the Capture function +.
The browser Chrome is offering, overall, a good experience.
Camera and Multimedia:
The camera interface is customized by LG and offers a basic mode which allows you to take photos with a touch of the display and the ability to set only the ratio between 4:3 pictures, 16:9 and 1:1. Can enable click to cheese or a self-timer. Video recording has a unique HD resolution (1280 x 720 pixels) at 30 frames per second with continuous focus. Via front camera can make a shot through hand motion and record video at a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels.
The rear camera can take pictures of sufficient quality for a Visual display and for sharing.Once brought on a larger display you notice the little contrast and the difficulties in the most difficult lighting conditions. Better the situation with macros. Decidedly low quality of front camera.
The video quality, despite the continuous adjustment of focus and exposure, is considerably low so as the audio quality captured.
Very simple audio Player with the possibility to program the shutdown. Not missing stereo FM radio. The video player is able to play files in AVI, MKV and HD resolution and Xvid, with some slowdown, even in Full HD resolution. Are not natively play the Divx.
LG K4 is sold in two colours at a list price of $ 129 euros. Let’s start with the positives: has a working autonomy and good ergonomics due to size and weight. Flaw in display, a component which I believe has a fundamental weight when choosing a device. In addition to a low resolution, viewing angle is very limited. Other failings, justifiable only in small part from the market segment to which it belongs, are definitely those of brightness and proximity sensors. Just enough photographic quality. In short, at this price on the market there are definitely more interesting products that will overshadow this smartphone from LG.