In the end, the third model in the LG Black Label series had a very simple name: LG Secret . It is LG's new bet on sophisticated design mobiles , after the successful Chocolate and Shine . A very slim model ( 12 mm thick ) and with a sliding screen , with two fundamental variations compared to its predecessors: it incorporates an ambitious camera and, as is becoming more and more common, touch control details .
After testing this striking terminal for a few weeks, we are going to tell you in this article the impressions that this mobile has left us. Like everyone else , it has its strengths and other darker facets . And some of the latter lie precisely in the touch interface, which could have been asked for much more. However, it is still a mobile with a good design and a camera that offers us many possibilities , as we explain in more detail in this analysis.
Visual appeal at odds with handling
To the thinness of this LG Secret must be added two details of its design that orient it towards high- end users . To begin with, the case is reinforced with carbon fiber , a material that provides strength and at the same time lightness, and that we have already seen present in laptops such as the Acer Ferrari 1100 . Its 2.4-inch screen is also specially protected against scratches and other daily vicissitudes, as it is made of tempered glass .
The latter is designed to keep the screen in good condition, as it is tactile and we will apply our fingers on it. Now, we will only do it for an application , called Touch Multimedia and that is activated by pressing one of the side buttons of the phone. A simple interface with which we can start music, view photos, open documents, start games and tune in to the FM radio . But only for that. The rest of the options are handled with semi-hidden keys around the central button , which are sensitive to the touch and light up in a bluish color .
Visually, the effect is very striking , but unfortunately it is not as practical as we would have liked . And, first of all, there is little space between the keys , so it is not uncommon to make a mistake when pressing. Second, LG has not yet managed to create a touch surface that responds quickly to our fingers . This is an evil that almost all mobile manufacturers have been dragging, which are at the moment light years away from what Apple has achieved with its iPhone .
This causes that, every time we access a menu, we dispense with the touch keys whenever we can to use the alphanumeric keyboard . As you can see in the photo below, in many menus each of the options is accompanied by a number that corresponds to the normal keys, which in this case serve as a “shortcut” . But even this handling system becomes uncomfortable, due to some incomprehensible flaws that we have found in the interface.
For example, in the music player . IF we enter it and want to search for a song by its title, we cannot access the list and just write , as when we explore the phone book. Instead, you have to go to the "Search" option and type the title or the beginning of the title. And be careful, you have to write it exactly the same, including capital letters. Really slow and frustrating. In addition, each time we exit and enter the player, all the options are reset , such as random playback or equalization.
That is, every time we want to listen to music, we have to configure our preferences, as they will not be saved. If we add to this that, as was the case with the LG Viewty , this Secret takes its time to load any content saved on the memory card (microSD up to 4 gigabytes) , the act of listening to music can become really tedious. To finish the job, we have to get out of the playback menu so that the phone does not play tricks on us when we put it in our pocket: it is the only menu in which the touch keys do not automatically lock when sliding the screen down . And we don't quite understand why.
Very versatile camera and accelerometer
If we abstract from the great difficulties of handling this LG Secret , we find other very positive points. Starting with the camera , which starts automatically by pressing the shutter button and whose five megapixel resolution, surprising on a mobile so thin , we allow you to print photos to giant size. The optics are not endorsed by any reputable manufacturer, as the LG Viewty didwith the Schneider Kreuznach label , and we don't have xenon flash either. This means that the quality of the image will depend a lot on the lighting conditions. But for those photos outdoors during the day and indoors well lit, the results are more than satisfactory .
In addition, we have some curious options that allow us to make the most of the camera. In the photos, we can activate the Panorama mode , to merge three different photos into one with a great angle of side view. As with the LG Viewty , the process is very simple and the mobile manages to merge the three shots with great accuracy . In videos, we can record at 120 images per second and then play back at 15 images per second, achieving a fairly successful slow motion effect . There is also a fast speed recording mode , with which we can achieve that effect so characteristic of the comic scenes of Benny Hill. These kinds of details are always appreciated.
Another good point of this LG Secret is the accelerometer . When we see a photo or a video, we will only have to turn the terminal by hand to change the display from portrait to landscape . In addition, the accelerometer is also used in games , in a similar way to the Sony Ericsson F305 : if we start a game of darts, we make the natural movement of throwing it with the mobile in hand . Good and curious detail.
A complete pocket-sized multimedia kit
In addition to the compatibility with formats as common as MP3 for music, this LG Secret can also play video in DivX . A good decision by LG; Well, we will not have to go around converting these types of videos, which are very widespread on the Internet, to be able to see them on the mobile screen.
If we only want to listen to sound, we also have FM radio ; an external loudspeaker that gets a decent enough power for the privacy of the room and a Bluetooth connection with A2DP profile . That is, if we have headphones or speakers compatible with this standard, we can transmit music without cables .
It does not have a standard headphone output, but the headphone cable has a 3.5 mm minijack adapter , so we can use any pair of headphones. This cable shares the same connection port with the charger and the USB cable , which allows us to fill the mobile with files as if it were an external hard drive.
Who wants this LG Secret?
This type of user who shies away from “brick mobiles” and looks for a fine phone with a good design , without giving up a fairly complete equipment .
Above all they highlight its design that attracts glances and the good possibilities that we can get out of the camera . In a second order of importance, we can also cite the high-speed Internet connection through the telephone network (HSDPA) , with which we can check email whenever we want or browse our favorite pages, always taking into account the limitations that we set our rate so that we do not get scared with the bill.
It can improve
Tactile details need to add comfort and functionality. And, unfortunately, in this LG Secret the opposite happens . In addition, features and possibilities of the phone are obscured by low battery life . In this we agree with our friend Miguel Ángel Muñoz , who in a recent SER Digital broadcast stated that an 800 mAh battery is insufficient for a mobile with so many applications. And taking into account that its price amounts to 550 euros , it is required that you can live away from the charger for several days. But is not the case.
GSM / EDGE / UMTS / HSDPA
|Weight and measurements||103 x 51 x 12 mm|
|Memory||100 MB of internal memory expandable by microSD cards up to 4 GB|
|screen||2.4 inch QVGA TFT LCD touch screen (240 x 320 pixels)|
|Camera||5 Megapixel CMOS sensor (JPEG 2592 x 1944 pixels)|
16x digital zoom
Manual, automatic and face detection focus
Effects: Black & White, Negative, Sepia, Blue, Emboss, Sketch, Purple, Bluish, Monochrome, Edge Map, Posterize.
White balance: Auto, Outdoors, Cloudy, Bright, Indoors.
ISO: Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800.
Color tone: General, Black and White, Negative, Sepia, Emboss.
3/5/10 second timer
Scene Modes: Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Night, Beach, Sports, Party
Shooting modes: Normal, Continuous, Panorama, Frames, Music video recording
Video recording at 30 fps (AVI 640 x 480 pixels)
Video recording at 120 fps for slow motion effect (AVI 320 x 240 pixels)
Fast speed video recording (AVI 320 x 240 pixels)
Secondary camera for video calls
|Multimedia||Play music, video and photos|
Supported formats: JPEG / MP3 / WMA / AAC / MPEG4 / 3GP / WMV / H.264 / H.263 / DivX
FM radio tuner
Document reader in TXT, PDF, DOC, PPT, XLS
|Controls and connections||Touch interface|
On / off / reject / hang up / return to main menu key
Call / pick up / accept key
Multimedia Touch on / off button
Camera / shutter activation button
Quick Menu access button
Multipurpose connection: battery charger, USB 2.0 (with supplied adapter cable), headphones.
Internal microSD card slot,
Wireless: HSDPA and Bluetooth A2DP
|Autonomy||229 minutes in conversation, 123 minutes in video call and 260 hours in standby|