Hear everything: Get the best from the LG G7 ThinQ’s brilliant audio system

lg g7 thinq audio guide headphones
Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

Do you have LG’s latest G7 ThinQ smartphone in your hand? Then you likely bought it because of the great internal speaker, the camera, and the sleek design. However, did you know it’s a great device to use with headphones too? LG has been a smartphone audio master for a while, and the G7 continues the tradition.

Want to hear the difference between a G7 and other, lesser smartphones? You need the right equipment and our guide on how to find all the correct settings so it sounds its best.

What makes the G7 so good?

We’ve already talked about the phone in our in-depth review, but here are the key audio specs again. Inside is a 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC, a rarity in the smartphone world,  which is what gives the G7 ThinQ its stunning ability. The Bluetooth 5.0 connection supports AptX HD, and there is DTS:X Virtual Surround tuning installed as well. The G7 is one of the few phones available that will play MQA-certified music, some of which is available through Tidal.

Even though the phone has slim bezels, a notch, and an 18:9 aspect ratio screen, there’s still a 3.5mm headphone jack. Finally, there’s a MicroSD card slot in the hybrid SIM tray to store music files.

Bluetooth headphones

lg g7 thinq audio guide aptx hd
Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

You can use any Bluetooth headphones with the LG G7 ThinQ, but if you’re thinking of buying a new set to go with your new phone, we’d recommend choosing a pair that supports Qualcomm’s AptX HD codec — even if it doesn’t benefit you now, it may do in the future as you build up a hi-res music collection.

Qualcomm’s AptX HD codec plays streaming music at 24bit/48kHz resolution, higher than the 16bit/44.1kHz resolution of a CD or Tidal stream, meaning you’ll get amazing sound quality over a wireless connection. All the pieces of the puzzle have to support AptX HD — the phone, the headphones, and the music file should be hi-res and uncompressed. A complete list of headphones that support AptX HD can be found here, but we recommend the Sony WH-1000xM2, the Bowers & Wilkins PX, and the superb Audio-Technica ATH-DSR9BT.

With the right pair of headphones ready, go to the Settings menu on the G7, then Bluetooth, and ensure it’s switched on using the toggle at the top right of the screen. Ensure your headphones are in pairing mode, and select them from the list. Normally, that would be it; but if you’re connecting a pair of AptX HD supporting headphones, you’ll get another alert.

lg g7 thinq audio guide best quality
Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

It tells you to tap the Settings cog next to the paired headphones, then tap Connection Type. To get AptX HD sound, you must select Best Sound Quality under this menu. It’s a permanent change, so you won’t have to do it each time you reconnect the headphones, unless you unpair them.

Now all that’s left is to play some music. We recommend playing your own hi-res files or tracks from Tidal or Spotify Hi-Fi. It’s possible to change the listening experience using the DTS:X Virtual Surround feature.

lg g7 thinq audio guide dts x
Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

To find it go to Settings on the phone, select the Sound tab along the top, then look for Sound Quality and Effects. Tap this and find DTS:X 3D Surround and toggle the switch to on. Tap it to open a menu screen, where you can choose between three sound stages — wide, front, and side to side. Try each one out to see how it sounds, and remember that a single setting won’t work for each song, so you’ll need to experiment.

Wired headphones

lg g7 thinq audio guide quad dac
Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

There’s plenty of tech to enhance the Bluetooth listening experience on the LG G7 ThinQ, but don’t dismiss the good, old 3.5mm headphone jack. It’s the only way you’ll get to experience the Quad DAC in all its glory, as it can’t be used with a Bluetooth connection.

We don’t think you need help on plugging the headphones in, so we’ll skip that part. To activate the Quad DAC, go to Settings, then the Sound tab, and Sound Quality and Effects. Look for the Hi-Fi Quad DAC option and toggle the switch to on.

From here, you can play with the Sound Presets, listed in the menu underneath. Have a track playing when you do, as the alterations are quite dramatic. There are five available: Normal, Enhanced, Detailed, Live, and Bass. Tap each one to change it. When you’re happy with your selection — we find Normal is perfectly tuned for most music — go back a step and choose Digital Filter.

There are three Digital Filter options: Short, Sharp, and Slow. LG provides a description of what each one does, and again, the change is immediately noticeable. Play around with both the Sound Presets and the Digital Filters to tailor the sound exactly to your liking. Return to the Sound Quality and Effects menu and find the Equalizer option. Tap it and you’ll find a long list of different sound presets, and if you scroll to the bottom of the list, a Custom option allows manual alteration of the equalizer. Using this wide variety of tools, it’s amazing just how much control you have.

Using our guide, you’re sure to get the most out of the LG G7’s brilliant audio system. Happy listening!

Product Review

LG's new V40 has 5 cameras, but ThinQ twice before you buy

The LG V40 ThinQ has five cameras -- three on the back and two on the front. This makes it one of the most versatile camera phones LG has released to date, and it’s creatively fun to use. Read on for more in-depth analysis.

Verizon's newest deals can net you $500 off the LG V40 ThinQ

Looking for a new LG flagship? The LG V40 ThinQ is here, and it's bringing a familiar style, two more camera lenses, and upgraded specs. Here's absolutely everything you need to know about the LG V40 ThinQ.

Key settings you need to change on your brand-new LG V40 ThinQ

Now that you've got your brand-new LG V40 ThinQ, it's time to get to work. Whether its hiding the notch or setting a schedule for the blue light filter, here are some key settings you'll want to change on your LG V40 ThinQ.

These are the best LG V40 ThinQ cases to stop unsightly damage

The LG V40 ThinQ is the latest entry in LG's long line of great V series phones, but it's not invincible. The best way to protect it from potential damage is with one of the best LG V40 ThinQ cases.
Product Review

It's got game. But the Razer Phone 2 is still crippled by its camera

The Razer Phone 2 will impress with its gaming prowess and 120Hz screen. But if you care at all about taking pictures on your phone, skip it. While Razer has improved the camera, it’s still short of the competition.

Google’s new floating keyboard is so helpful, it’ll put you on cloud nine

Bezel-less smartphones look great, but typing isn't always so good, as grip can be more of a challenge. That's where Google's Gboard keyboard comes into play. It now has a floating keyboard feature to help out.

Insane 5G Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 boasts a retro slide-up camera

Xiaomi will announce the Mi Mix 3 smartphone on October 25, and according to the company's spokesperson, it will be capable of connecting at 5G speeds and feature 10GB of RAM -- two world firsts.

Declutter your life with our favorite wireless chargers for Android and iPhones

We checked out the best wireless phone chargers to make tangles and uncooperative ports a thing of the past. Whether you have an iPhone or Android, find out which wireless charging pads are worth buying, and how their features compare.

Save up to $900 with the best smartphone deals for October 2018

Need a better phone but don't want to spend a fortune? It's never a bad time to score a new smartphone and save some cash. We rounded up the best smartphone deals available that can save you as much as $900.

Huawei confirms it won't be selling the Mate 20 series in the U.S.

Huawei has released the Mate 20, Mate 20 Pro, and Mate 20 X. With all-new Kirin processors, advanced A.I. brains, and an amazing triple camera, here's absolutely everything you need to know about the new Mate 20 series.

8 weird, useful camera accessories for your iPhone or Android

With the rise of smartphone cameras comes an explosion of accessories aimed at enhancing your photography skills. Here, we take a look at a few, from add-on grips to entire camera units designed specifically to work with iOS devices.

eBay’s new Instant Selling program turns old smartphones into new money

With eBay's new Instant Selling program, selling your smartphone just got easier. Immediately after listing your device, you'll receive a voucher that can be used toward the purchase of a new phone through the site.

Razer Phone 2 vs. Red Magic Phone vs. Honor Play: Which gaming phone is best?

Mobile gaming is serious business nowadays. But which high-powered gaming phone is best for you? We pitted the Razer Phone 2 against the Red Magic Phone and the Honor Play to find out which of the three deserves your attention.

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for October 2018

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals.