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LG Gram 17 Pro (2023) review: a good idea, poorly executed

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 front view showing display and keyboard deck.
LG Gram 17 Pro
MSRP $2,000.00
“The LG Gram 17 Pro is fast and has great battery life, and its display is colorful enough for creators. But its reliability is questionable, and its input devices are subpar.”
  • Fast productivity performance
  • Thin and light
  • Solid connectivity
  • Excellent battery life
  • Bright and colorful display
  • Subpar keyboard and touchpad
  • The build is too bendable
  • Too expensive
  • Questionable reliability

LG’s Gram line is primarily aimed at offering thin and light laptops that nevertheless offer solid performance and excellent battery life. They don’t try to outperform the best laptops, but rather strike a balance between size and speed.

The 2023 LG Gram 17 Pro is just such a laptop, with a thin and light CPU mated with an entry-level GPU. It succeeds in performing well and lasting a long time on a charge, but it was unstable during my testing and suffered from a poor keyboard and smallish touchpad. On top of that, it’s just too expensive to compete, even given its very light chassis.

Specs and configurations

  LG Gram Pro (2023)
Dimensions 14.91 inches x 10.19 inches x 0.7 inches
Weight 3.2 pounds
Processor Intel Core i7-1360P
Graphics Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050
Display 17.0-inch 16:10 WQXGA (2,560 x 1,600) IPS
Storage 1 x 1TB SSD
2 x 1TB SSDs
Touch No
Ports 2 x USB-C with Thunderbolt 4
2 x USB-A 3.2 Gen 2
1 x HDMI
1 x 3.5mm audio jack
1 x microSD card reader
Wireless Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.1
Webcam 1080p with infrared camera for Windows 11 Hello
Operating system Windows 11
Battery 90 watt-hours
Price $2,000

The 2023 LG Gram 17 Pro comes in two configurations. Both utilize the Intel Core i7-1360P CPU and sport the same 17.0-inch 16:10 IPS display. With 32GB of RAM and 2TB of total SSD storage (created by two 1TB drives), the machine costs $2,300. With 16GB of RAM and a single 1TB SSD, it’s $2,000. Either way, it’s a premium laptop and will make a dent in your budget.

Thin, light, and flawed

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 front angled view showing display and keyboard deck.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

LG’s Gram lineup aims to be as thin and light as possible given the display size. For a 17-inch laptop, the Gram 17 Pro certainly meets that goal. It has reasonably sized display bezels, and so its width and depth are fine, and it’s thin at 0.70 inches and very light at 3.2 pounds. That makes for a large laptop that’s surprisingly easy to carry around.

Like most laptops made of magnesium alloy, the Gram 17 Pro is also quite bendable. The lid twisted without much pressure, and the keyboard deck was pretty flexible. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not a robust laptop, but compared to tanks like the Dell XPS 17 and Apple MacBook Pro 16, it just feels less durable. The hinge allows opening with one hand, which is nice, but there’s quite a bit of wobble while using the laptop.

Like so many laptops today, the Gram 17 Pro has a minimalist aesthetic with simple lines and an all-black color scheme. Only a chrome Gram logo on the lid breaks up the look. It’s an OK-looking laptop, but it’s not the most attractive we’ve reviewed lately.

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 top down view showing keyboard and touchpad.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Next up is the Gram 17 Pro’s keyboard, which is spacious with large keycaps while still sporting a numeric keypad. The only problem is that the switches are abrupt and lack the snappiness of competitive laptops like those in the Dell XPS and Apple MacBook lines. I found the keyboard a bit fatiguing during long typing sessions. And the touchpad, while smooth and responsive, is just too small. There’s plenty of room for a much larger touchpad, and in fact, the Gram 17 Pro’s version looks almost comical compared to the competition.

One strength is connectivity. The Gram 17 Pro has both Thunderbolt 4 ports for modern peripherals and a nice selection of legacy ports to support older devices. Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 are also on hand for up-to-date wireless connectivity.

The webcam is a 1080p version that provides a sharp image. It’s nice to see 1080p being widely adopted now, and the Gram 17 Pro continues that trend. The infrared camera supports Windows 11 Hello passwordless login and works well.

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 front view showing webcam.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

LG also includes Glance by Mirametrix, which provides user presence sensing. It can tell where the user is looking, lock the laptop display when the user walks away and unlock it when the user returns, and issue a warning if someone’s looking over the user’s shoulder. These are increasingly common features, and they’re welcome here.

Solid productivity performance and battery life

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 rear view showing lid and logo.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Gram 17 Pro is a thin and light laptop, even given its large display, and so it’s equipped with a 28-watt Intel 13th-gen Core i7-1360P with 12 cores (four Performance and eight Efficient) and 16 threads, running at a max Turbo Frequency of 5.0GHz. It is also equipped with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050, the previous generation entry-level Nvidia discrete GPU. As such, unlike some other 17-inch laptops, like the Dell XPS 17, that use faster 45-watt CPUs and more powerful GPUs, the Gram 17 Pro is aimed more at productivity tasks and very light gaming.

In this respect, it does well. It wouldn’t run Geekbench 5, but in our other CPU-intensive benchmarks, it competed well against other recent laptops with the same CPU. It beat out most earlier-generation Core i7-1260P chips with the same wattage, cores, and threads, but a slower Max Turbo frequency, However, it couldn’t keep up with AMD’s Ryzen 7 7736U, except in the PCMark 10 Complete benchmark, where it led the pack.

Overall, the Gram 17 Pro will allow demanding productivity users to take advantage of that large display for getting work done. It won’t be great for creators, though, who often use apps that can leverage a fast GPU. Its RTX 3050 was slower than others we’ve tested, hitting just 2,929 in the 3DMark Time Spy test (3,571 in performance mode), where other laptops with the same chip scored over 4,000. That makes the Gram 17 Pro only a little faster at gaming than laptops with integrated graphics, something I’d normally test with Fortnite. Unfortunately, the game wouldn’t run without causing a bluescreen.

(single / multi)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
PCMark 10
LG Gram 17 Pro (2023)
(Core i7-1360P)
Bal: N/A
Perf: N/A
Bal: 108
Perf: 103
Bal: 1,860 / 9586
Perf: 1,874 / 10,063
Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 8
(Core i7-1360P)
Bal: 1,843 / 8,814
Perf: 1,835 / 10,008
Bal: 122
Perf: 101
Bal: 1,846 / 8,779
Perf: 1,906 / 9,849
Samsung Galaxy Book3 Pro 360
(Core i7-1360P)
Bal: 1,800 / 8,960
Perf: 1,781 / 9,071
Bal: 109
Perf: 99
Bal: 1,711 / 8,389
Perf: 1,750 / 9,182
LG UltraPC 17
(Core i7-1260U)
Bal: 1,598 / 7,444
Perf: 1,595 / 8,915
Bal: 146
Perf: 107
Bal: 1,619 / 6,454
Perf: 1,697 / 9,316
LG Gram 16 2-in-1
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,682 / 9,035
Perf: 1,686 / 9,479
Bal: 137
Perf: 113
Bal: 1,524 / 6,314
Perf: 1,663 / 8,396
HP Dragonfly Pro
(AMD Ryzen 7 7736U)
Bal: 1,473 / 9,061
Perf: N/A
Bal: 84
Perf: N/A
Bal: 1,530 / 11,158
Perf: N/A
Apple MacBook Air M2
Bal: 1,925 / 8,973
Perf: N/A
Bal: 151
Perf: N/A
Bal: 1,600 / 7,938
Perf: N/A

Somehow, LG crammed a large, 90 watt-hour battery into the Gram 17 Pro’s very light chassis. The Gram series is known for its excellent battery life, and the Gram 17 Pro is no exception.

It managed 13.75 hours in our web-browsing test, which is a solid score that tends to imply all-day battery life for typical productivity tasks. The laptop could not complete the PCMark 10 Applications battery test, which is a shame because that benchmark is the best indication of productivity longevity. It did well in our video-looping test, though, at almost 20 hours, which is very long and vies with Apple’s highly efficient M2 MacBook line.

Overall, the Gram 17 Pro has great battery life. If you push it very hard, you may not make it through an entire day, but most users will find that they won’t have to carry the diminutive charger around with them.

Troubles galore

We sometimes experience technical glitches with review laptops, but most often, they’re easy enough to resolve. Maybe we can’t run a benchmark or two, or our colorimeter won’t fully cooperate. We note these minor issues most of the time, but they don’t tend to affect a laptop’s overall review or rating.

The LG Gram 17 Pro is a different story. I experienced numerous Windows bluescreens with the first unit LG sent me — so many that I couldn’t complete the bulk of my testing. LG sent me another unit, and it did the same thing. We never did figure out what was going on, but LG configured the third unit itself and sent it to me. This time, I was able to complete all but one benchmark, Geekbench 5.

However, it’s something to keep in mind as you consider this laptop. I’m sure that LG is working furiously to determine what was causing so many issues, but this is the least reliable review unit I’ve handled in my many, many years of laptop reviewing.

A very nice display

LG Gram 17 Pro 2023 front view showing display.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

For those creators who don’t need extreme speed to get their work done, the Gram 17 Pro offers an attractive display. It’s large at 17 inches, with a productivity-friendly 16:10 aspect ratio, and it’s just sharp enough at 2,560 x 1,600. It offers variable refresh rate (VRR) technology that lets it switch from 31Hz up to 144Hz as needed, giving it the potential to deliver a smoother Windows 11 experience.

According to my colorimeter, it was better than the usual premium IPS display. It was bright at 476 nits, and its colors were wider than usual at 91% of AdobeRGB, with a good accuracy of Delta-E of 1.34 (1.0 or less is considered excellent). It also offered superb contrast for an IPS display at 1,490:1, which, of course, can’t compete with the inky blacks of OLED panels.

Productivity users will enjoy the display for its size and brightness, while creators will like the colors and contrast. It’s one of the Gram 17 Pro’s stronger attributes.

Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is better)
LG Gram 17 Pro (2023)
476 1,490:1 100% 91% 1.34
Samsung Galaxy Book3 Pro 360
407 N/A 100% 98% 0.73
LG UltraPC 17
407 1,470:1 100% 89% 1.53
Dell XPS 15 9520
381 381,130:1 100% 99% 0.46
MSI Creator Z17
355 840:1 100% 87% 1.35
Apple MacBook Pro 16
475 475,200:1 100% 90% 1.04

A few flaws mar the performance

It’s hard to recommend a laptop with so many technical glitches. I trust that LG will get them fixed, but in the meantime, I’d be a bit wary.

Regarding its performance, battery life, and display, the Gram 17 Pro is a solid laptop. It would be a great choice for multitaskers and light creators. Its keyboard is uncomfortable, though, and its touchpad is too small. And its chassis doesn’t have the same dense rigidity that I’ve come to expect from the best laptops. Given its premium price and its unreliable performance, this is one 17-inch laptop that you probably want to pass up for now.

Editors' Recommendations

Mark Coppock
Mark has been a geek since MS-DOS gave way to Windows and the PalmPilot was a thing. He’s translated his love for…
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