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May 18, 2011

LG Optimus Black Review

by Franz Bicar

LG has always taken pride in the design and build of their smartphones. The LG Optimus Black is no exception. If LG hired you to design your ideal phone, then this would be it. The Optimus Black features a clean, elegant, and of course, thin black exterior that would be the envy of every smartphone enthusiast.

Its thin, 9.2 millimeters body makes it one of the thinnest Android smartphone to have ever been released on the market. It weighs a mere 3.84g. Coupled with its svelte design, the Optimus Black isn’t too light, or too heavy, in your hand or in your pocket.

One thing I like about the Optimus Black is its minimalistic design. There are no buttons or lights anywhere in sight. There entire front of the phone is covered with a single glass sheet, breaking up for only a millimeter at the very top to allow for the earpiece. On the right side of the phone, you have the basics, headphone jack, power / lock combo button, and MicroUSB port. The back of the Optimus black is adorned only with its 5 megapixel camera. The lens and LED flash are recessed a little to prevent against scratches and to maintain its slim and elegant design.

The Optimus Black is equipped with LG’s Nova Display. This means, it has an IPS screen capable of resolutions up to 800 x 480. The result is a display that has excellent quality and impressive color reproduction. The maximum luminous output of the display clocks at the impressive 700 nits, or 700 candelas per square meter. LG states that 700 nits is the exact threshold for achieving perfect outdoor visibility, allowing the human eye to easily distinguish pictures even in direct sunlight.

Furthermore, LG’s Nova Display is exergy efficient. According to LG, the NOVA technology allows for a greater amount of light to pass through, making the screen brighter without having to suck excessive amounts of power from the battery. Besides that, pixels that display black essentially turn themselves off thus draining exactly zero watts of power.

With its slim design, LG has successfully incorporated a 500mAh battery inside the Optimus Black.

As for its camera, the Optimus Black’s 5 megapixel camera produced excellent images, far superior than phones with 8 megapixel clickers. Detail is picked up and lovingly retained all over photos, while noise and blurryness are at a serious deficit. Performance is great whether you’re taking distant shots or going in for a closeup, and when shrunken down to about a megapixel’s size, the Optimus Black’s images stand a good chance of convincing you they were taken with a dedicated camera.

The LG Optimus Black runs on Android 2.2. The Black’s single-core 1GHz processor is enough to accomodate all processes and applications you might want to fire on the phone. You also get LG’s Optimus UI 2.0 added right out of the box. The all-familiar Froyo comes with a revamped homescreen management system, a slightly modified lock screen, and music controls conveniently added to the drop down menu.

All in all, the LG Optimus Black is quite impressive. It is well designed and has a number of cool features, plus a decent camera.

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