T-Mobile G2x - The Verdict

I really, really like the G2x. It’s quick, powerful, understated, decently well-built, and has a great display. Nvidia gave this one to us as a long-term evaluation unit, so I’ll definitely be looking at it as a day to day phone for the next few months. I’m psyched, because this has all of the elements of a superphone - dual-core SoC, IPS display, HSPA+. In addition, the G2x runs a stock version of Android. (Ironic isn’t it, most companies are putting skins on Android to make them “unique”, and the most unique one on the market ends up being the stock Android UI.)

As a huge fan of the stock Gingerbread UI, this endears the G2x to me greatly. It’s so fluid, so smooth, and so downright responsive compared to most phones, even other similarly powerful dual-core devices. I’ve got a MyTouch Slide here as well, with the same Qualcomm MSM8260/Sense 3.0 combo as the Sensation, and the difference is almost night and day. To an extent, this is because of the asynchronous core clocking in the dual-core Snapdragon SoCs, but still, the sheer responsiveness of the G2x is probably it’s best feature. 

Unfortunately, the software side of the G2x is a double edged sword. You’re basically trading that instant response for stability - this G2x isn’t as bad as the Optimus 2X that Brian had earlier, but it’s getting there. Random crashes, cellular instability, etc - I’m averaging a forced reboot roughly once every 36 hours. It’s....disconcerting, let’s put it that way. The Gingerbread update didn’t actually help the stability side of things too much, and the whole camera application ordeal is just bad. It speaks of a lack of attention to detail and testing at almost every level. 

And so as much as I love the G2x, I must say that the Sensation is a better buy on T-Mobile. They’re logical competitors, and while I subjectively like the G2x more, the Sensation is better designed, better built, and much, much more stable. The software is simultaneously the best and worst thing about the G2x - the quickness and smoothness of the entire OS makes the device so much fun to use....until it crashes on you. The first time is a bit quaint, the second is more concerning, and after that it’s just annoying.

Now, if you’re open to CyanogenMod’ing it up, that route is always an option. The combination of CM7.1 and LauncherPro is pretty sweet, and me and Brian will cover it in a later article, but it’s a decent way of solving most of the software issues. I love the phone otherwise - the screen is gorgeous, the hardware is pretty decent, and I cannot stress how much fun it is to have a device this responsive. But there’s too many issues with stability with the OS and the baseband for this to top the Sensation, which is probably one of the single best all-around smartphones on the market.

T-Mobile G2x - The Battery
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  • aegisofrime - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    My Galaxy S II does Sunspider 0.9 in 3423.8ms, if you guys want another data point. Reply
  • Brian Klug - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    Sunspider 0.9, or Sunspider 0.9.1? Methinks the latter ;)

    -Brian
    Reply
  • fixxxer0 - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    My droid x on CM7 rom does the sunspider 0.9 in 3945ms (vs 7014 for stock) for peoples comparison.

    not overclocked at all (undervolteded though)
    Reply
  • yourwhiteshadow - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    if you're going to mod the phone you get, you might as well get the G2x, but otherwise you're better off with the sensation.

    hopefully we'll see these benchmarks repeated with a stable CM build.
    Reply
  • Brian Klug - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    That's actually our plan - to do a CM story and show some performance numbers. I've actually run all the betas and the final stable CM7 builds on the Optimus 2X which we still have kicking around.

    Honestly from the sound of it, CM7 is much, much more stable than the binary that LG has pushed out to the G2x. I can't speak too much for the G2x version of CM7, but the Optimus 2X CM7 build is flawless.

    -Brian
    Reply
  • arbarath - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    I own Optimus 2X and I was very excited when I bought it.

    I am really disappointed after I bought. Sometimes my single core HTC desire performs better than Dual Core Optimus 2X. I have all above mentioned problems. The phone suddenly becomes very slow. The pre dexopt issue also killing. When you want to add a widget u need to wait for 30 sec to bring up the list of widgets.

    I tried Cyanogen Nightlies but not stable yet. I get too much of dropped calls with RC1. I will move to cyanogen. I have no hope on LG's software side. Better they could hire some cyanogen group persons to develop their software.

    I am not recommending LG Phones to any of my friends.. after all these..
    Reply
  • fabarati - Friday, August 05, 2011 - link

    You should try out Modacos GR2 alpha. It's fluid and smooth and quick and pretty damn stable. But more importantly, it has all the LG software improvements, like a better texting app, better contacts app, 720p mkv playback, LGs camera app.

    Also, there's a camera app mod that allows 30fps 1080p recording @ 17 mbps and 30 fps 720p @ 10 mbps, greatly increasing video quality. It's also available for CM7.

    But yeah, it's a tinkerers phone.

    /optimus 2x owner
    Reply
  • roguecong - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    i recorded a clip on the "high" setting and it showed as 1080(8)/23 in windows properties - with a lousy 128kbps audio. Reply
  • fabarati - Friday, August 05, 2011 - link

    There's a camera app mod that allows 30fps 1080p recording @ 17 mbps and 30 fps 720p @ 10 mbps, greatly increasing video quality.

    The audio is limited by the microphones. Increasing the bit rate won't improve audio, but lowering it won't necessarily worsen it.
    Reply
  • Vinas - Wednesday, August 03, 2011 - link

    I liked the last half of this review. Still I feel that the benchmarks are not a good indication of performance since these phones are not running the same stuff. For instance the HTC sensation only had about 100MB free with sense 3.0 running. It also has a much better qhd screen, so the resolution is just higher although it keeps up well. Basically I bought the sensation over the g2x. In the end sense 3.0 is pretty awesome and I'm not wanting to switch back anytime soon. Reply

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