Ready for next-gen gaming
Lackluster stand design
Occasional pink tint during off-angle viewing
The Gallery OLED gets its name from its design, as it’s intended to hang on the wall like a portrait. An optional stand for the G2 is sold separately, but it’s a rather inelegant setup that will likely have you wishing you had wall-mounted it. For folks that do display the G2 on the wall, you’ll be treated to a near-flawless TV: perfect black levels, incredible color, and sensationally bright highlights for its class. Its top-tier performance is buttressed by a laundry list of A/V and gaming-related features.
Due to its friendlier price and its carefully considered stand design, we still think the LG C2 is the better pick for most people. That said, if you intend on wall-mounting your next TV and you’re able to splash out, it doesn’t get much better than the G2.
Updated September 8, 2022: The G2 review has been updated to reflect our Best Upgrade designation and add in the newly announced 97-inch size (pricing will be added when it's available).
About the LG G2
The G2 is available in four screen sizes ranging from 55 to 83 inches. If you’ve got your heart set on an LG OLED smaller than 55 inches, you’ll have to explore other series, like the C2. Our review unit is a 65-inch model that we received on loan from LG.
Here’s how the series shakes out in terms of pricing. Bear in mind that these prices are likely to come down as the year progresses.
- 55-inch (LG OLED55G2PUA), MSRP $2,199.99
- 65-inch (LG OLED65G2PUA), MSRP $3,199.99
- 77-inch (LG OLED77G2PUA), MSRP $4,199.99
- 83-inch (LG OLED83G2PUA), MSRP $6,499.99
- 97-inch (LG OLED97G2PUA), MSRP TBA
Given the nature of OLED hardware, we don’t expect there to be any major differences in performance between each model. However, certain physical characteristics (like panel uniformity) may vary from unit to unit.
With sizing and pricing out of the way, let’s take a look at the specs:
- Resolution: 4K (3,840 x 2,160)
- Display type: OLED
- HDR support: Dolby Vision, HDR10, HLG
- Dolby Atmos: Yes, (native decoding)
- eARC support: Yes (HDMI 2)
- Native refresh rate: 120Hz
- Smart platform: webOS 22
- Color: DCI-P3 color space/10-bit chroma resolution
- Variable Refresh Rate (VRR): Yes
- Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM): Yes
- Processor: a9 Gen 5 AI Processor 4K
- Other features: FreeSync Premium, G-Sync compatibility, Game Optimizer, Google Stadia, GeForce Now, Filmmaker Mode, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple AirPlay 2, ASTC 3.0 tuner, hands-free voice control
The G2 ships with LG’s Magic Remote, which can be used traditionally (with directional pad-based navigation), or like a motion-activated wand (with an on-screen cursor tracking your hand movements). LG’s clicker is chunkier than most of its competitors and its buttons are quite loud, but the Wiimote-like motion controls are often useful when using an on-screen keyboard.
The latest iteration of LG’s smart platform, webOS 22, is similar to last year’s. From its dedicated home screen, you can choose from a wide variety of streaming apps like Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, Prime Video, and HBO Max. There are surplus apps available for download, too, should you decide to make webOS your main streaming hub.
Like most smart platforms, you’re going to find yourself dodging sponsored content left and right, but webOS zips along with minimal slowdown, and navigation is relatively simple.
A TV of this caliber would be far less enticing if it wasn’t built for the ultimate home theater experience, so I’m happy to report that the G2 delivers on the hardware front. You’re getting four HDMI ports equipped for 4K gaming at 120Hz, eARC compatibility, and more USB ports than you can shake a portable stick at.
Here’s what you’ll find in an L-shaped cutout on the back of the panel:
- 4x HDMI 2.1 (4K @ 120Hz, 1x HDMI ARC/eARC)
- 3x USB 2.0
- RF connection (cable/antenna)
- Ethernet (LAN) input
- Digital audio output (optical)
Before testing each TV, we make sure the panel is on and receiving a continuous signal for at least 2 hours. Our 65-inch G2 received this standard warm-up time before any readings were taken. In addition, the TV received the latest firmware updates at the time of testing.
After research and consultation with other experts we’ve updated our warmup time from 24 hours to 2 hours which should be ample time for modern display technologies and also better approximates how real buyers use their TVs at home.
For both SDR and HDR tests, we’re using the G2’s Filmmaker picture mode. We’ve chosen this setting because of its accuracy, but performance may vary depending on which picture mode is enabled. For example, you might experience a brighter picture with different settings enabled, but it may interfere with color temperature and overall color accuracy.
For additional context, however, I also conducted our HDR tests in both Cinema mode and ISF mode, though these results are not reported below. I find Cinema mode to be preferable for bright-room viewing, as it offers a brighter overall picture and punchier highlights.
To get a sense of the TV’s average performance, we use a standard ANSI checkerboard pattern for most of our basic contrast tests. We also use white and black windows ranging from 2% to 90% to test how well the contrast holds up while displaying varying degrees of brightness.
Our peak brightness measurements are taken with sustained windows to represent the TV’s peak brightness over a sustained period of time. Specular highlights (like brief flashes of reflected light) might reach higher brightness levels, but not for sustained periods of time.
All of our tests are created with a SpectraCal C6 meter, a Murideo Seven 8K signal generator and tabulated via Portrait Displays’ Calman Ultimate color calibration software.
I'll expand on our test results throughout the review, but for now, here are some key takeaways:
- HDR contrast (brightness/black level): 251.5 nits/0.0001 nits (ANSI checkerboard)
- SDR contrast (brightness/black level): 296.7 nits/0.0001 nits (ANSI checkerboard)
- HDR peak brightness (sustained): 896.7 nits (20% white window, Filmmaker mode)
- HDR color gamut coverage (DCI-P3/10-bit): 99%
- SDR color gamut coverage (Rec.709): 100%
As always, the TV’s energy-saving steps were disabled prior to testing. This ensured that the G2 wasn’t adjusting its picture based on dark-room conditions.
For SDR tests, I kept the G2’s OLED Pixel Brightness setting fixed at its default position of 85 and the Gamma Adjust setting set to 2.4. (For reference, due to varying lab conditions earlier in the year, our SDR tests on the LG C2 were carried out with OLED Pixel Brightness maxed out and Gamma Adjust set to 2.2.)
For both SDR and HDR tests, Peak Brightness was set to High and Auto Dynamic Contrast was disabled. The following settings were also disabled: Super Resolution, Noise Reduction, MPEG Noise Reduction, and Smooth Gradation. In addition, LG’s TruMotion settings were kept off until I watched real-world content on the G2 (including OLED Motion). Lastly, during HDR tests, Dynamic Tone Mapping was disabled.
What we like
Accurate, voluminous color
The G2 may lack the color-enhancing quantum dots of a QD-OLED, but this impressive WOLED-style panel nevertheless delivers some of the most eye-popping hues I’ve ever seen on a TV.
In its most accurate picture modes (Filmmaker, Cinema, ISF), the G2 delivers one of the most tightly calibrated out-of-the-box pictures I’ve seen all year. In both the SDR and HDR versions of Filmmaker mode, I measured out-of-the-box color error (Delta E) between 1.6 and 2.2—below the threshold of what’s commonly perceptible to the human eye.
The G2 covers about 99% of the HDR color gamut (DCI-P3), and every Dolby Vision or HDR10 title I watched on the G2 looked positively stunning from a color perspective. During my week of testing, nature documentaries were my best friend, as they tend to be chock-full of reds, greens, and blues.
While watching the G2 side by side with the C2, the added color volume is subtle, but noticeable. Bold primary colors look about the same on the G2 as they do on the C2, but color gradients and softer tones tend to look clearer on the G2. For instance, while watching Life in Color with David Attenborough, I noticed that the G2 was more adept at reproducing the subtle color shift between the green and yellow feathers around a toucan's eye.
The brightest LG OLED I’ve ever seen
When I reviewed the LG C2 earlier this year, I touched on the specific nature of the C2’s improved brightness. It didn’t get that much brighter than its immediate predecessor, but the manner in which it was getting brighter allowed for better highlight detail. That improvement, together with LG’s superb image processing software, created a deep, detail-rich picture anchored by the perfect black levels of OLED.
With the G2, the story is exactly the same. It’s not an order of magnitude brighter than last year’s Gallery OLED, but the manner in which it's allocating that brightness is the real difference-maker. In HDR, the G2 easily eclipses 900 nits of brightness for small, concentrated highlights (compared to around 750 nits on the G1). This allows the G2 to draw a bigger distinction between “very bright” and “absolute brightest,” imbuing the image with higher contrast and more depth.
If you put the G2 next to the C2 and play the same HDR content on both (as I did), you probably won’t notice a very big difference in full-picture brightness. But specular highlights (the sun reflecting on the surface of the ocean, sparks spilling on a steel mill floor) will look significantly brighter on the G2.
But in comparing the C2 and the G2, I found that the G2’s added pop, while fun to behold, is probably not enough of a difference for most people to pick up on. If I had to choose between watching some of my favorite movies on the G2 and watching them on the C2, I’d go with the former, but that’s only because I’m a dedicated A/V enthusiast who’s measured the upper limits of each. If this sounds like you, I suspect you’ll also prefer the look of the G2.
Loaded with features for gaming and more
Dedicated gamers who opt for the G2 will be securing one of the best gaming TVs available today. All four of its HDMI 2.1 ports support 4K gaming at 120Hz, so there’s no need to worry about losing one of your two high-bandwidth HDMI ports to an eARC-enabled soundbar. In addition to Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) and standard Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), the G2 also offers FreeSync Premium and G-Sync compatibility for smooth, tear-free gaming across a vast range of titles.
If that weren’t enough, you’re also getting LG’s Game Optimizer, a gaming-specific settings menu that can be accessed whenever you’re playing. Among other things, it relays frame rate information, lets you tweak the picture quality based on game genre, and toggles various VRR options. Simply put, if you own (or plan on owning) an Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5, the G2 is one of the best TVs you can pair them with.
The G2 supports both Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos object-based surround sound (though it’s worth noting that LG quietly stopped supporting DTS audio a few years ago). There are plenty of ways to tweak the picture—in and out of Dolby Vision—thanks to an impressive array of software-based picture adjustments. The G2’s modest amount of motion stutter during filmic content, for instance, can be smoothed out with the TV’s highly granular motion enhancement settings. (I found the TruMotion settings for De-Judder and De-Blur to be most effective when kept at their lowest notches.)
What we don’t like
Stand design feels like an afterthought
The G2 might be a total showstopper when it's hanging artfully on the wall the way LG intended, but if you use the separately sold stand (as we did), you might find yourself underwhelmed by the G2’s tabletop formation (as we were). In fact, if you have no intention of wall-mounting the G2, your dollars might be better spent on an OLED TV whose stand design was better thought out.
The G2’s chunky, slab-like stand screws into the back of the panel in such a way that creates two issues; stability and cosmetics. There’s a ton of wobble going on if you happen to nudge the G2’s panel. And instead of being perfectly vertical, the stand props up the G2’s panel in a backward-leaning position—a look that some folks might not appreciate. The G2’s chassis is also thicker and heavier than most OLED TVs, as it was designed to hang as close as possible to a wall.
I grew accustomed to the G2’s easel-like positioning, but it feels less like a spirited design choice here thanks to the stand’s unsteady characteristics. The lightweight, simplistic design of something like the C2 looks and feels far more appealing, especially since it’s mostly wobble-free.
There’s a pink tint during off-axis viewing
Like the C2, the G2 is susceptible to some quirky, pink-colored tinting when predominantly white scenes are viewed off axis. In a side-by-side comparison of identical content, the C2’s pink tinting was more generalized, while the G2’s pink tinting was mostly noticeable on the right and left sides of the picture. In both cases, the effect was only detectable when the content on the screen was mostly white (a hockey rink, a snowy landscape, etc.).
This does not appear to be a defect with our loan unit, and I suspect that almost every LG G2 arrives with some color-tinting quirks thanks to inherent quirkiness of its display hardware. How much (or how little) pink tint you’ll notice will likely come down to panel lottery, and even so it doesn’t significantly detract from the TVs performance.
I’ve now noticed the pink shift on multiple C2s, an older C1, and the G2 we’re reviewing now. I imagine the issue has something to do with the display’s organic materials, or the OLED manufacturing process. Fortunately, it takes a keen eye to spot it, and in most cases, the G2 delivers some of the most accommodating viewing angles in the game right now. If you can set aside the occasional pink tint, the G2 is a great TV for entertaining a crowd.
How sunny is your living room?
Here’s the deal: I am the proud inhabitant of a living room that gets a fair amount of sunlight. In fact, I’d even go so far as to say that my living room experiences above-average brightness. The G2 would most certainly stand up to those conditions—and look great in the process.
However, if you’d characterize your living room as being really sunny, you could lower the gamma to 2.2 or 2.0 on the G2, or you might want to opt for a premium LED TV that gets two-to-three times as bright as the G2, like the Samsung QN90B.
The G2 is the brightest OLED TV LG has ever made. It’s not quite as bright as the Samsung S95B QD-OLED, but I’d rank both of them in the same tier. For dark-room use, there’s no question that I would prefer a G2 or an S95B over a top-shelf LED TV like the QN90B. But if I found myself spending a lot of time watching TV in a truly sun-drenched room, I would probably shop for an LED TV that can stand up to a sunbeam.
Should you buy it?
Yes—it’s one of the best OLED TVs ever made
The G2 is a significant leap forward from last year’s G1. Its crackling highlights and bold, bright colors are the best I’ve seen from an LG OLED TV, and LG’s image processing software continues to improve with each passing year. Like last year’s Gallery OLED, the G2 is also one of the best gaming TVs money can buy.
But the G2 is also considerably more expensive than most TVs, including the LG C2, our current pick for the best TV you can buy. If I had the dough to spend on a TV of this caliber, I’d probably opt for the C2. It’s only slightly less impressive from a performance standpoint, it features all of the same gaming features, and its stand design is more secure and attractive. (If you're curious which to buy, you can read our in-depth C2 vs G2 comparison.)
Alternatively, if I was still unsure about the G2, I’d take a long look at the similarly priced Samsung S95B. Its QD-OLED is every bit as bright and expressive as the G2’s WOLED display—perhaps more so. It also comes with a comparable list of gaming features, though the S95B doesn’t support Dolby Vision and only comes in 55- and 65-inch sizes.
If you’re dead set on wall-mounting your next TV and you’re vying for a top-shelf OLED, the answer is clear: buy the G2. The G2 was designed to resemble a work of art, and if you stick it up on your wall, it will.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
Meet the tester
Senior Staff Writer@Reviewed
Michael Desjardin graduated from Emerson College after having studied media production and screenwriting. He specializes in tech for Reviewed, but also loves film criticism, weird ambient music, cooking, and food in general.
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