Tag Archives: LG G5 Friends

LG G5 Friends – My Reviews of all 6 Friends / Modules

LG have released a combination of 6 Friends of the LG G5. The good news is that several of these can be used with other android and iOS devices. I have now reviewed all of the LG G5 Friends.

LG 360 Cam – Review

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To read my detailed review of the LG 360 Cam – Click HERE

LG Cam Plus – Review

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To read my detailed review of the LG Cam Plus – Click HERE.

LG Tone Platinum HBS-1100 Stereo Bluetooth Headphone – Review

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To read my detailed review of the LG Tone Platinum Bluetooth headphones – Click HERE

LG HiFi Plus Module – Review

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To read my detailed review of the LG HiFi Plus DAC – Click HERE.

LG 360 VR – Review

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To read my detailed review of the LG 360 VR – Click HERE.

LG Rolling Bot – Review

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Review coming soon as Rolling Bot not released yet.

So there you have it, all the LG G5 Friends now reviewed. If you have any questions please ask away.

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LG G5 Friends – LG B&O HiFi Plus module review + reviewed with the Samsung Galaxy S7

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Welcome to my review of the LG HiFi Plus with B&O Play. This is one of the LG G5 Friend modules. The LG HiFi plus costs £149 and is available from Clove Technology.

Key Specifications

– USB 2.0 Type-C
– Voltage 5 V ± 10%
– Current Consumption 220 mA (with earphone jack), 3 mA (without earphone jack)
– Headphone Jack 3.5mm
– Audio 32bit HiFi DAC(Digital to Audio Converter) and Amplifier
– Sound Pressure 1 m sound pressure 60 dB ↑ (100%) *based on a full charge
– Antenna GSM/CDMA, WCDMA, LTE™
– Operating Temperature -20 °C – 40 °C
– Dimensions/Weight 73.9 mm x 43.9 mm x 7.4 mm / 23.6 g
– Compatibility – other Android OS, iOS, Mac OS and Windows OS devices
– Model number – AFD-1200

In the Box

In the box you get the LG HiFi plus with a protective cover, shown below connected to the original bottom section of my LG G5. You also get a leather looking slip case and a short sized 10cm USB Type C cable to micro USB to allow you to connect it to various other phones, computers, iPhones and such like. That’s right it can be used in standalone mode with android, iOS, Mac Os and Windows devices.

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The pictures above show the module connected to my LG G5 which is gold in colour. The module adds about double the length of the original bottom section. The other aspect worth noting is that with this module connected, none of your cases will fit. However, I have ordered a silicone case on eBay that is made to fit with this module. When it arrives I will update this post regarding its quality and fit.

First Set-up Procedure

First connect the HiFi module to your G5. Power on. Head over to the LG Friends Manager app. Download the extra software as shown. Now when you connect headphones to the HiFi module, a message pops up on screen saying “HiFi Dac Starting up”. This takes a second. And that is it.

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Now head over to the sounds and notification and you will see an extra menu has appeared as shown below.

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You also get a HiFi symbol in the status bar.

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The neat part is the original bottom section of your G5 can be clipped into the cover of the HiFi Dac as shown below.

The module also contains all the cellular antennas and mic. I also noticed that the loudspeaker was louder too. So much so I wouldn’t bother with a Bluetooth speaker.

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The Sound Quality

For this test I used the following headphones – Audio Technica m50x, Sennheiser HD598se, Dunu Titan 5, Sony XBA-1 and Oppo PM-3. A complete mix of headphones from open and closed back, planar magnetic, in ear dynamic and in ear balanced armature headphones.

I used a mixture of music genres from dance, pop, jazz, classical, opera and more. I streamed from Google Play Music and Amazon Prime Music. I listened to music on my micro SD card using USB Audio Player Pro app which instantly recognised the HiFi module as a USB DAC.

Quite simply, EVERY headphone played through the LG HiFi module sounded the BEST it ever had. Incredible and such a pleasure to re-experience all my music again.

I was asked how does the HiFi DAC compare to the APT-X HD codec with the other LG Friend, the LG Tone Platinum. Well the HiFI DAC sounds better although the LG Tone Platinum is still very good. To read my review of the LG Tone Platinum, click HERE.

But of course the HiFi DAC can be used standalone with anything practically and in my tests with my Macbook, iPad Air and other android phones it worked a treat too.

Using the LG HiFi DAC with the Samsung Galaxy S7

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I downloaded the LG HiFi Manager app from the Google Play store. This app is only used to updated the firmware. You don’t need this app installed for the LG HiFi DAC to work. Anyway, connected to my Samsung Galaxy S7 the LG HiFi DAC sounded really good too. Streaming Google Play Music whilst the output volume was loud it was not as loud as that from the LG G5. Using USB Audio Player Pro app the output volume is considerably louder. Or as loud as you can manage! I also have the new Audioquest Dragonfly Red DAC. This suffers from really poor headphone volume when using apps like Google Play Music on the S7. USB Audio Player app works fine with the Red.

This does illustrate the LG have manufactured a great little DAC that works fantastically as a module for the LG G5 but also works just as well in its standalone mode.

Conclusion

This module makes the LG G5 an audio nirvana. It is staying permanently connected to my G5.Highly recommended. In stock and available from Clove Technology.

LG Tone Platinum HBS-1100 Stereo Bluetooth Headset – Review – The Worlds First with APT-X High Definition

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Welcome to my review of the LG Tone Platinum HBS-1100 Bluetooth Headset. This is the world’s first pair of headphones/headset that comes with the new APT-X High Definition Codec.

This means you can listen to 24 bit Hi-Fi / Hi-Res Sound with LG G5. At the moment the LG G5 is only only smartphone that comes enabled with the revolutionary Qualcomm® apt-X™ HD codec.The aptX™ HD Audio Codec delivers CD-like quality audio over Bluetooth that faithfully reproduces the full audio bandwidth and minimizes latency by significantly reducing the bit rate without affecting sound quality.

LG state that “now no wires are truly a thing of the past as you can bask in the sheer superiority of a 24 bit audiophile experience in total wireless comfort.”

Note that the APT-X HD codec comes as standard with the LG G5. You do not need the LG Hi-Fi Plus module.

Key Specifications

– Bluetooth Version 4.1
– Supported Bluetooth Profiles Headset (HSP), Hands-Free (HFP), Advanced Audio Distribution (A2DP),
Audio/Video Remote Control (AVRCP)
– Talk Time Up to 11 hours
– Music Play Time Up to 10 hours
– Standby Time Up to 17.3 days
– Charging Time Less than 2 hours
– Operating Range 33 ft.
– Dimensions 6.0″ (W) x 7.04″ (H) x 0.5″ (D)
– Weight 2.05 oz.
– Call & Play/Pause Buttons Inline on side of headset
– Available Colours – Black, Silver, Gold
– Sound Profile Harman Kardon® Platinum Sound
– Tone & Talk™ Support – Support for Android and Apple® Devices
– Audio Speaker Optimization Technology Balanced Armature Speaker Technology
– Qualcomm® aptX compatibility Qualcomm aptX / Qualcomm aptX HD
– In the Box – LG TONE PLATINUM Bluetooth Stereo Headset (HBS-1100),Micro USB Charging Cable (AC Adapter Not Included), Extra Ear Gels (Small and Large), User Manual, Quick Start Guide, & Warranty Card

The LG Tone Platinum Bluetooth headset is fairly slim made with an anodized brushed aluminum alloy trim. LG has used a Balanced Armature design as the sound module to minimise distortion and reproduce the sound accurately. The headset also offers noise cancelling dual microphones for clearer calls even in the noisiest environments. In testing these worked really well. Calls were exceptionally clear. LG added Voice Command to handle incoming calls.

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Tone & Talk app has been enhanced to support Voice Memo and Find Me via any Android smartphone (version 4.1 and higher). The LG Tone app adds a lot of extra functionality and makes this headset easier to use.

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The other controls on the headset are everything you expect and more. Controls for music, calls, volume, cable retraction and more as shown in the photos.

The Sound Quality

This is the part that matters most. Does the new APT-X HD codec work? In my testing it really does work and really well. It also sounds better than Samsung’s proprietary UHQ codec found on the new Samsung Galaxy S7.

As this is created by Qualcomm more headphones are due later on this year featuring this new codec which will undoubtedly become the new audio wireless standard.

LG’s decision to use balanced armature over a dynamic driver is a statement in itself. Balanced armatures tend to reproduce sound fairly naturally with delicate mids and treble.

I have listened to loads of different genres and all were faithfully reproduced. It is hard to believe these are wireless headphones. The Tone Platinum are not bass heavy. But if the track has bass it digs deep too. Classical and vocals were wonderful. Playing flac songs and again the sound quality was excellent.

My current favourite Bluetooth headphones are Plantronics BackBeat Pro. These deliver huge amounts of bass and impact. A lot of people will listen to these are even prefer them on a quick listen. These are over ears and massive so have the ability to deliver such impact. However, over a longer listening period the LG Tone Platinum will triumph. Ear fatigue is non existent and the overall quality is way above the Plantronics.

Another bonus is that the in ear canals are comfortable even after lengthy usage.

Conclusion

Qualcomm’s APT-X HD is the real deal. The LG Tone Platinum are fantastic as a headset from a feature count, superb for phone calls and more and sound brilliant with your music.

For the latest pricing on Amazon UK – Click HERE

LG G5 Friends – LG 360 Cam – Review

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Welcome to my review of the LG 360 Cam, one of the LG G5 Friends. The LG 360 Cam is available from Clove Technology and costs £199.

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The Key Specification

– Bluetooth V4.1
– Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
– USB Type 2.0 Type-C
– Battery 1200 mAh
– Optics 13 MP, 206° x 2 (Dual Fisheye Lens)
– Max. Video Res 2560 x 1280 (30fps)
– Max. Photo Res 5660 x 2830 (16M)
– Image / Video File Format Still Image : JPEG / Video : MP4 (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, Audio : AAC 5.1Ch)
– Capturing Spherical / Half-spherical image & video
– Sound 3 Mics
– External SD Card Up to 2 TB
– Dimensions/Weight 40 mm x 97 mm x 25 mm / 76.7 g

The LG 360 Cam features compact spherical 13mp cameras that can shoot at a max of 206 degrees x 2 (dual fisheye lens)to create a 360 degree photo or video. 2K Video support and 5.1 channel audio is supported too. The LG 360 CAM is compatible with Youtube and Google Street View app. You can directly publish 360 video and photo taken by the LG 360 CAM to Youtube and Google Street View.

Hardware

The hardware is brilliant. The LG 360 Cam is charged via USB Type C. It takes micro SD cards up to 2 TB too. The protective case acts as a stand as shown. It also has a tripod screw mount built in. The hardware controls are simple too. Power on button is on the side. LED indicator for showing you which mode – 360 or 180 degrees. Press front button to take a photo, or press and hold for video. You can control it without the LG 360 Cam software or with it. With the cam manager software you get far more options and controls.

Software

The LG 360 cam manager software is superb. The main splash screen gives you access to the camera controls, gallery and settings.

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The gallery shows you what is sitting on the 360 Cam micro sd card and what is on the LG G5. You can download and delete content from the 360 Cam with ease. The settings menu give you access to a range of useful information and the firmware updates.

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The LG 360 Cam has its own app which can also be accessed via the LG Friends Manager. Connection is via WiFi Direct and is really quick. The LG 360 Cam has a lot of options as shown below.

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Look above. That’s right. This is manual mode. The LG 360 Cam has an excellent manual mode. Here you can see the faster shutter speed is 1/6000.

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And the slowest shutter speed is 1/2 second. Other options include exposure, white balance and ISO.

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If taking photos at just 180 degrees instead of the full 360 degrees, you can alter the field of view angle. I have photo examples of the difference this makes below.

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In terms of settings for video and photo quality, there are plenty of options. As standard it records in 5.1 Channel surround sound audio. You can change this to 2 channel stereo.

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There are also a choice of scenes/modes as shown.

When using the 360 cam manager it is great being able to see what you are recording. If you are standing more than 50 feet approx away approx from the device or if your line of site is blocked, you may not be able to see what you are filming on the screen but you will still be able to control it. On the second video below, I hid behind a wall so I was not in the footage, but I could still operate it.

Playing the footage back on the LG G5, you can either view in 360 degrees or use the select split screen mode. This shows video from each side of the cameras split 50/50 on screen. Rather cool. You can also connect the LG 360 VR glasses and see the footage in a whole new way!

Example Footage

First up is a 360 video of my village, Princetown, Dartmoor.

Another example down by the river.

Below are photos from the LG 360 Cam in 360 degrees and lower using the options in the camera app.

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Next using the 360 cam in 180 degrees you have 3 different wide settings. Below are 3 shots starting with the widest field of view down to the narrowest.

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Conclusion

The LG 360 Cam is a decent product and well thought out and consequently is recommended. Using this with the LG 360 VR glasses creates a whole new world.

If you are interested in the LG 360 Cam this is now available fromClove Technology.

LG G5 Friends – The LG Cam Plus – Detailed Review with FULL Specifications

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Welcome to my review of the LG Cam Plus. This is my first review of one of the modules/friends for the LG G5. The LG Cam Plus costs £69.00 and is available from Clove Technology.

The Key Specifications / Features

– Comfortable Shooting Grip
– Traditional camera experience
– Physical keys: intuitive camera on/off, zoom, shutter, and record keys; autofocus with a half-press of the shutter key
– Burst Mode will become available with later firmware update
– USB USB 2.0 Type-C
– Battery Li-ion 1,200 mAh
– Charging time less than 200 minutes
– Voltage 5 V ±10%, 9 V ±10%
– Current Consumption 25 mA (no Charging), 1 mA (Power Off)
– Charging Consumption 500 mA
– Output Consumption 500 mA
– Audio Speaker and digital MIC
– Sound Pressure 1 m sound pressure 60 dB ↑ (100%) *based on a full charge
– Antenna GSM/CDMA, WCDMA, LTE™
– LED Battery indicator
– Operating Temperature -20 °C – 40 °C
– Dimensions/Weight 73.9 mm X 61.4 mm X 15.9 mm / 55.4 g

What is it like to use?

The LG Cam Plus replaces the bottom chin of the LG G5. It is slightly longer as you can see from the photos and it is also only available in silver. It also means the G5 is no longer flat and if you have a case for your phone it won’t fit now. I don’t use a case for my G5. The design seems tough and durable so far and it doesn’t show any fingerprints.

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My LG G5 is gold. In all honesty the different colour finishes do not matter but it would have been nicer if it had been available in matching colours. The LG B & O HiFi Plus module is black.

The LG Cam Plus contains a 1,200mAh battery, the antenna for GSM/CDMA,WCDMA and LTE, audio speaker and digital mic. It is recharged using your LG G5 USB Type C cable. LG claim it takes less than 200 mins to recharge the battery. From flat I found it took about 2 hours. There is a LED light than is red while recharging and turns green when fully charged. The LED is also there to notify you when the battery is under 10%. Connecting the USB Type C cable to the Cam Plus first fast charges the G5 and then the module. Whilst the power lead is connected to the Cam Plus you cannot use the keys on it.

So how does it all work. Simply remove the bottom off your G5 by pressing the button. Take the battery off. Removing the bottom chin and the battery are so simple BUT make sure you have read the manual that explains the technique. Connect the battery to the Cam Plus and connect the module to the LG G5. Power on your G5. I wish the G5 didn’t have to power off each time you swap module. However, it does this as each module has its own firmware which will receive updates to improve it. With the Cam Plus connected the weight increases by about 50g. The firmware is controlled via the LG Friends Manager and Cam Plus app.

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Here’s the crazy part. The Cam Plus contains the cellular antenna, mic and loudspeaker. These improve upon the G5. The larger enclosure of the module helps the loudspeaker sound. I have done several Skype calls with and without the module. With the module fitted the calls were clearer. Plus you can use the 1,200mAh battery to keep the G5 charging while on a long Skype call. Video recordings using the mic also highlighted the improved audio.

So what is the grip section like to use as a camera. It is not the most natural grip to hold. I have no idea how the LG videos show it being used one handed. It is possible but I do recommend 2 hands. However, with 2 hands in action it is a lot better to use. There is a button that you slide to instantly activate the camera and sliding it again reverts back to the G5 home screen. There is a 2 way shutter button that works very well and a button for video recording. You can take photos while video recording. There is a leaflet in the Cam Plus box stating that burst mode will come soon via a firmware update. So for the time being you have to use the on screen shutter button for burst mode. The other control is a zoom scroll wheel which zooms in and out of the shot effortlessly going between the 16mp and 8mp wide lens. The 1,200mAh battery only works when the camera is being used. It very slowly adds charge back into the G5. It stops charging after about 5 mins of not using the camera grip. However, it is very useful to have power slowly put back in the phone as the camera does like to drain the G5. I took a 20 min time-lapse and noticed the camera grip had turned off, probably after the 5 min mark and probably because it didn’t detect any movement on the grip keys. Hopefully a future firmware update will change this.

The small print. With the Cam Plus connected USB OTG and USB Audio does not function. Again will this might change with a firmware update.

Conclusion

I take a lot of photos. I have found the Cam Plus handy to have for this purpose. It is a breeze swapping off and on again. I also like the fact the battery level of the phone is being maintained despite snapping loads of photos.

Available from Clove Technology.

Items in the Review Process – Plus Special Offer

There are a number of devices/gadgets currently undergoing the review process. These include the following –

LG G5 BCK-5100 Hybrid Battery Charger & Portable Battery – Now available from Clove Technology

LG 360 VR – Now available from Clove Technology

LG 360 Cam – Now available from Clove Technology

Piper NV Smart Security System – Details and available from Amazon

Other items expected soon which will be reviewed include the remaining LG G5 Friends – LG Cam Plus, HiFi DAC, LG Rolling Bot and the LG Tone Platinum. – Full details – LG G5 Friends

Special Offer – I bought yesterday a 4 pack of USB Type C cables with different sizes. (1 x 10cm cable,2 x 100cm cable, 1 x 200cm cable) Tested and certified to USB Type-C standards and with the 56k ohm resistor. Available at Clove

None of the Clove Technology links are affiliate referral links. I just like using them and have done for many years. It is really good to see that they have stock of the latest devices and gadgets, so do have a look at all their other items 🙂

There are a few other items/phones/audio/gadgets undergoing the review process too 🙂

And don’t forget if you’re buying anything on Amazon, use the link below. Helps Gavin’s Gadgets towards the site running costs and at no extra cost to yourself!

AMAZON LINK