Hands on: LG G4 review

A second hands-on session indicates that the G4 is a bigger upgrade than the specs suggest Tested at $3400

What is a hands on review?
The LG G4 OLED TV photographed on a white stand in a showroom, with a soundbar positioned in front. On the screen is the blue ceiling of a building.
(Image: © Future)

Early Verdict

More comprehensive, comparative testing in our own facility will be required before we can deliver a final verdict, but two demo sessions suggest that the new G4 is more of an upgrade than perhaps expected


  • +

    Very bright and punchy

  • +

    MLA upgrade for the 83-inch model

  • +

    55- and 65-inch models come with a stand


  • -

    Seemingly no speaker hardware upgrade

  • -

    97-inch model doesn't have MLA

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This year’s LG G4 OLED TV is a much bigger deal than it initially seems. Within the familiar chassis and spec sheet hide several subtle upgrades that together seem more meaningful than one might expect, and on top of that, the gap between this premium model and the mid-tier C4 is larger than that of any G-series and C-series TVs before.

I have now been lucky enough to see the G4 in action twice, first at a private CES 2024 event where LG briefly demonstrated several of its new OLED TVs, and then again at a much more substantial hands-on session at LG's UK HQ in Weybridge. While we will have to wait until we get the TV into our own facilities for independent, comparative testing, I'm so far very impressed indeed.


The LG G4 OLED TV photographed on a white stand in a showroom, with a soundbar positioned in front. On the screen is the blue ceiling of a building. On the screen is a tower between two large buildings.

(Image credit: Future)

LG has only so far announced the US pricing for the G4, and at every size but one, it's $99 more expensive than the G3 it is replacing. Here is a breakdown by size:

Swipe to scroll horizontally
LG G4 price comparison
55"£TBC / $2599 / AU$TBC£2600 / $2500 / AU$4195
65"£TBC / $3399 / AU$TBC£3500 / $3300 / AU$5295
77"£TBC / $4599 / AU$TBC£5000 / $4500 / AU$8395
83"£TBC / $6499 / AU$TBC£7500 / $6500 / AU$10,995
97"£TBC / $24,999 / AU$TBCN/A

The G4 will go up against flagship OLED rivals such as the Samsung S95D, Panasonic Z95A and whatever model Sony eventually announces – hopefully a successor to the A95L. If the G4’s price turns out to be too steep for you, LG will happily sell you the step-down C4 or the entry-level B4, both of which we have also seen in action – check out our LG C4 hands-on and LG B4 hands-on.

The G4 goes on sale in March in the US, where pre-orders are live now. We're expecting it in the UK around April/May, but will update this when we have confirmation.


A photo of the around the back of the LG G4 OLED TV showing the pedestal stand.

While this perhaps isn't a great photo, you can hopefully see the G4's new stand, which will come bundled with the 55- and 65-inch models in the US and likely other regions, hopefully including the UK. (Image credit: Future)

As mentioned, the G4 looks very similar to the G3 it replaces. In fact, the main chassis is identical. This means it has a picture frame-like design with a flat back and, a step around the edges aside, a universal thickness of between 2.4cm and 2.8cm depending on which size model you buy.

Speaking of sizes, the G4 will be available in 55, 65, 77, 83 and 97 inches. In a first for LG’s G-series, which have always come with a wall mount rather than a stand, the 55- and 65-inch models will also be available with a pedestal. We understand that whether a specific example includes the wall mount or stand will be distinguishable by an extra letter in the model number, but we await confirmation of that. Both versions will apparently launch at the same price.

For what it's worth, the pedestal stand is a nice one with a small footprint and central neck that can be extended to make room for a soundbar. The other sizes of the G4 will continue to be bundled with a wall bracket, with the design very much still lending itself to wall mounting.


The LG G4 OLED TV photographed on a white stand in a showroom, with a soundbar positioned in front.

(Image credit: Future)

LG Electronics, which is the division of LG that produces the actual TVs, has confirmed that the 55-, 65-, 77- and 83-inch versions of the G4 all feature the new, second-generation MLA OLED panel from LG Display. LG Display has previously stated that this panel is capable of going 50 per cent brighter than the previous version, up to a maximum of 3000 nits.

However, while LG Electronics hasn’t revealed its own brightness figures for the G4, we expect the increase in brightness to generally be more conservative than what LG Display is saying the raw panel is capable of. That said, LGE does say that its new ‘Peak Highlighter’ feature can boost the brightness of small highlights (that take up no more than 3 per cent of the screen) by up to 150 per cent of the brightness of which its own non-Evo OLED models, such as the new B4, are capable.

This Peak Highlighter is just one of the features powered by the new Alpha 11 AI Processor, which is exclusive to the G4 and wireless, step-up M4, introducing a processing differential between the G-series and C-series for the first time. This processor brings with it exclusive picture features such as 'AI Director Processing', which can detect a director's intended colour tone and adapt the picture to best express this, and 'Object Enhancing by Visual Perception', which involves analysing and enhancing each pixel. On the sound front, LG is promising that 'AI Sound Pro' will offer 'richer and fuller audio' via the integrated, virtual 11.1.2 surround sound system.

There aren’t many ways in which last year’s G3 could be improved in terms of gaming specs, but LG has added support for 4K/144Hz for the G4. This will appeal to PC gamers with very high-end rigs, but current consoles top out at 4K/120Hz. Of course, 4K/120Hz is still supported, as are ALLM and VRR, and the G4 boasts four top-spec HDMI 2.1 sockets – just as its predecessor did. Most rivals still do not.

The G4, like its 2024 stablemates, will run the new version of LG’s own webOS operating system. webOS 24 is very similar to last year’s version, but bespoke content recommendations have returned to the front page, which is something we have been pushing for since we reviewed LG’s 2023 models. To facilitate this change, the ‘Quick Cards’ (essentially folders) that LG introduced last year have been reduced in size. They are also now dynamic, so hovering over one with the ‘Magic Remote’ control reveals what is inside, with priority given to the app or feature you were last using, allowing you to quickly jump back in.

webOS 24 also supports user profiles – up to 10 of them – so that content recommendations can be more personalised. Voice recognition will automatically switch to the profile of the person talking, albeit only in the US at first, with other regions, including the UK, to get the feature at a later date.


The LG G4 OLED TV photographed on a white stand in a showroom, with a soundbar positioned in front

(Image credit: Future)

The 83-inch version of the G4 is the first OLED TV of this size to feature MLA technology, and it looked utterly glorious in action during the very brief CES demo session. A colourful pattern popped from the display in fabulously bright, rich and vibrant fashion, and clips from Apple TV+'s Foundation were punchy while retaining authentic cinematic warmth and balanced, natural skin tones.

It was hard to tear myself away from this huge model, but the 65-inch version (which was mounted to the new pedestal stand) also looked impressive. LG didn’t provide last year’s G3 model for comparison at the CES event, but it was a different story in the more recent UK hands-on session where the G4 and G3 were compared side-by-side extensively.

Across the board, the G4 was noticeably brighter than the G3, but the additional impact of small highlights was particularly evident. This makes for a more dynamic and exciting overall delivery.

There is a marginal degree of extra solidity to the image with the G4, too. LG initially described this as being "extra detail" but admitted that it’s not really detail or sharpness-related, but instead almost a byproduct of the set's increased contrast. This makes perfect sense and is borne out by our general experience reviewing TVs – the increased contrast creates more solid edges and a degree of extra three-dimensionality, which some people might see or describe as additional detail. In the demo, it manifested in the beads of the jewellery worn by the Na'vi characters in a scene from Avatar. LG insists that this is not processing, as such, and the sets were in Filmmaker Mode, which LG is at pains to state means all active processing is disabled.

LG also seems to have addressed an issue we flagged with the G3's low-light performance – somewhat faded colours. Using a test pattern of red and black squares that gradually dim, the red squares remained consistently rich in colour right through to the point that the whole image turned black, while the G3's reds became a little more washed-out with every dimming step. This difference was also clear in a movie clip of a dark apartment, with the blue hue of the scene better preserved by the G4 than the G3.

LG also demonstrated a small improvement to motion handling in the very likeable Cinematic Movement setting, which is the one we use to gently smooth the judder of 24fps content without introducing shimmer or unnaturalness. The G4 does indeed look very marginally better in this regard, and even a brief demo of the motion processing turned up to its highest level was impressive, with little to none of the nasty fizzing around tricky motion that we generally expect from such modes.

This, like every other aspect of the G4's performance, will need to be tested thoroughly once we have our own sample to review in our own time and with our own content, but the signs are very good so far.

  • LG C4 vs G4: the key differences between LG's new OLED TVs



(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

LG didn’t demonstrate the G4’s own sound system at all during the presentation session, so I’ve no idea at all whether it sounds better than the G3. I certainly hope that it does: LG’s 2023 TVs sounded rather poor and the G3 was trounced for audio quality by models such as the Sony A95L and Panasonic MZ2000. It seems highly unlikely that LG will have managed to overcome that deficit entirely, considering that the core audio hardware appears to be the same as it was last year – but a great deal can be accomplished through processing so there's certainly hope.

Early verdict


(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

To reiterate, we never deliver a full verdict on a product until we have gone twelve rounds with it in our own test rooms for a rigorous, independent review, but after two separate hands-on sessions with the G4, it seems fairly clear that LG has taken everything that made the G3 great while adding extra punch and impact.

Of course, the G4 isn't really going to be judged against the G3. It's going to be judged against new rivals from Samsung, Sony and Panasonic, each of which will feature their own upgrades. Stay tuned for our comparative reviews.


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Tom Parsons

Tom Parsons has been writing about TV, AV and hi-fi products (not to mention plenty of other 'gadgets' and even cars) for over 15 years. He began his career as What Hi-Fi?'s Staff Writer and is now the TV and AV Editor. In between, he worked as Reviews Editor and then Deputy Editor at Stuff, and over the years has had his work featured in publications such as T3, The Telegraph and Louder. He's also appeared on BBC News, BBC World Service, BBC Radio 4 and Sky Swipe. In his spare time Tom is a runner and gamer.

What is a hands on review?

'Hands on reviews' are a journalist's first impressions of a piece of kit based on spending some time with it. It may be just a few moments, or a few hours. The important thing is we have been able to play with it ourselves and can give you some sense of what it's like to use, even if it's only an embryonic view.