Do we have a good one for you today – the new Xiaomi Mi 5 goes up against the new LG G5. The Mi 5 with its metal frame and glass takes on the all metal LG G5 – both have a solid build and look as premium as they come. In full disclosure, there is an upgraded MI 5 Pro model that has a ceramic back, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, but we are sticking with the primary model with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. We will first look at the similarities between these two devices and then look at each one in more depth.
The Xiaomi Mi 5 and the LG G5 are almost identical in physical size – which is understandable since their displays are close to the same size – although the LG G5 weighs in at 20 grams heavier. Their displays are virtually the same size (5.15-inches vs 5.3-inches,) they use the same IPS LCD Technology, but different resolutions. The devices use the same Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor, and they both use the Adreno 530 GPU for graphics. They both offer a 32GB model, with the Mi 5 also offering a 64GB option and a 128GB in the Mi 5 Pro edition while the LG G5 offers memory expansion to 2TB via a microSD card. They both sport excellent cameras but go about it in a different way.
Each incorporates a fingerprint sensor for unlocking the device as well as authorizing mobile payments. Android 6.0 Marshmallow is running on both devices, although the Mi 5 uses their MIUI 7 overlay and LG uses their own Optimus UI. Both have the usual suspects – WiFi, Bluetooth v4.2, GPS, NFC, IR Blaster and a Type-C microUSB port and both offer rapid charge.
Please take a deliberate look at the detailed Specifications Comparison chart below and here you will see just how these two great devices stack up against one another – click on the "View Full Comparison" link at the end of the chart to expand the details. After that, we will look at each device in greater depth and point out some of its pros and cons. From all of this information, we will try to determine the winner based on specs and execution of design and functions.
Xiaomi Mi 5
Founded in 2010, Xiaomi is another one of those Chinese success stories, where the combination of high quality, solid build, and low pricing quickly helped them to become China's largest smartphone manufacturer in 2015. Their only criticism is their reluctance to take their sales worldwide, although there are hints that will be happening soon. While Xiaomi can bring a phone to market very quickly, it took a while for the new Mi 5 to come to market. But rather than use the Snapdragon 810, they made a wise decision and waited until the new Snapdragon 820 was available. It is a beautiful device designed with a metal frame and edges with Gorilla Glass on the front and the back, although the Mi 5 Pro uses a Ceramic backing. Just how does this Chinese device stand up to the likes of the new all metal LG G5?
Most new flagships are using the Quad HD (QHD) display, but Xiaomi decided to stick with the Full HD (FHD) resolution because on the smaller 5.15-inch IPS LCD display, you still get 428 pixels-per-inch (PPI,) and it will save on battery life. The Mi 5 uses the latest flagship processor from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 820 quad-core with dual cores clocked at 1.6GHz and dual cores clocked at 2.15GHz. The Mi 5 packs 3GB of DDR4 RAM with options of 32GB and 64GB of non-expandable storage – the Mi 5 Pro offers up 4GB/128GB of storage.
Xiaomi realizes the importance of having a good camera and the MI 5 looks like it will uphold this tradition. The main camera sports a 16MP Sony sensor with an aperture of f/2.0, phase detection autofocus, dual-tone LED flash and OIS (4-axis.) The front-facing camera (FFC) is 4MP for selfies and video chatting. The Mi 5 uses a 3000mAh non-removable battery with Quick Charge 3.0 that can give you an 83-percent charge in only 30 minutes.
The Mi 5 has nothing that sets it apart from the LG G5 other than the price. The Xiaomi Mi 5 ships with Android 6.0 Marshmallow with their own MIUI 7 on top of it. It measures in at 144.6 x 69.2 x 7.3 mm and weighs in at 129 grams. The model we are looking at is the base 3GB/32GB model, which is available for a discounted price of $388 – there is also a 3GB/64GB model for $488, and the Pro model with 4GB/128GB at $589.
LG held back no punches when they redesigned the new LG G5, and you have to admire them for taking a risk. LG put some intense thought into its LG G5 – not only did they go from plastic to a metal body – they kept those essential features – memory expansion and removable battery and still whipped in some innovation. Let's take a closer look at the new LG G5 and see just how the specs and design hold up to the new Xiaomi Mi 5.
LG was one of the first manufacturers to use the QHD display on its LG G3 – so naturally, the LG G5 sports a 5.3-inch IPS LCD QHD display to which they added the 'always-on' display feature. It packs a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and 554 PPI. The processor is the newest Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor with a dual-core clocked at 1.6GHz and a dual-core clocked at 2.15GHz with an Adreno 530 GPU to handle any graphics you can throw its way. The G5 packs in 4GB of DDR4 RAM and 32GB of internal memory, expandable to 2TB via a microUSB card.
LG went with a significant redesign of their camera area this year by going from a single 16MP sensor and then added another 8MP sensor, along with new software on the new LG G5. The 8MP has a wider angle, allowing the user to capture more in the photo. The G5 retained the 8MP FFC from the G4 for selfies and video chatting. LG dropped the battery size from the 3000mAh found on the LG G4 to 2800mAh, but it is still removable and has quick charge capabilities
The big news has to be the LG G5 as the first smartphone that can use modules – push a button on the lower side, slide out the bottom 'chin' of the device along with its battery, and slide in a replacement battery or different modules that add more functionality. However, these modules raise just as many questions as they do our excitement. Will developers make modules, how expensive will they be, will those modules be usable in future devices (LG G6?) LG retained its built-in IR Blaster and FM radio, and then added the fingerprint sensor where the rear buttons once resided. The fingerprint sensor clicks inward and acts as an on/off switch with the volume controls on the side. The LG G5 measures 149.4 x 73.9 x 7.7 mm, weighs in at 159 grams and comes in Silver, Titan, Gold, and Pink. The LG G5 is available on all the leading US carriers, and it will cost you about $625.
…And The Winner Is…
This comparison was a tough one to choose because it is evident that the LG G5 has better specs, more features, and is widely available to use on most networks. It has the QHD display, a better camera area, more RAM, expandable memory, removable battery, modular design…but it comes with a $625 price tag.
The Xiaomi Mi 5 is a beautiful and well-built device with a great FHD display, the same processor as the LG G5 and only 1GB less of RAM for only $388. For this reason – it is such a bargain – I am picking the Mi 5 as the winner of this comparison. If we were comparing the Mi Pro model with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage for almost $600, then the LG G5 would, without question, be the winner.
If you need a smartphone that will work on more networks, or you need expandable memory or will use the modular features that the LG G5 possesses, then buy one, as you will not be disappointed. It is definitely the higher spec'd smartphone in this comparison. However, if money is tight, expandable memory is not important to you, and you are on AT&T or T-Mobile, then pick up the Mi 5.