LG has two OLED TV ranges with EVO panel technology launching in 2022, but how do the C2 and G2 compare? In this LG C2 vs LG G2 article we outline the differences between the two models in contention to be the best OLED TV this year.
LG upped its OLED picture performance game last year when it launched the first OLED Evo next-generation panel on its LG G1 TVs. In terms of 4K picture quality, it was the best LG TV we've seen to date.
By utilising a new luminescent blue material and new green layer, the brand was able to produce an OLED TV that was brighter than it had managed before, with greater colour depth. This year, it’s pushed the OLED Evo envelope even further, and made the technology cheaper.
LG C2 vs LG G2: price and sizes
Both the LG C2 and G2 come in a wide variety of screen sizes. If you’re planning to hang one of the Gallery G2 screens on the wall (as they're intended to be, since they don't come with a stand as standard), you’ll need a substantial wall behind them, as they include 55-, 65-, 75-, 83 and 97-inch versions.
The LG C2 series comes in six screen sizes: there are 42-, 48-, 55-, 65-, 77-, and 83-inch versions, but as they ship with a stand in the box, you’ll find yourself with more viewing options.
Prices have yet to be announced for the new models, but the LG C2 will be significantly cheaper than the LG G2. However, it looks like the LG C2 will launch at a slightly higher price than last year's LG C1, so we'd expect the same for the LG G2.
For reference, while we wait for this year's prices, the LG G1 started at £1,999/$2,199 for the 55-inch model, while the LG C1 started from £1,299/$1,499 for the 48-inch model, with the 55-inch LG C1 costing £1,699/$1,799.
LG C2 vs LG G2: who they're aimed at
The first thing to acknowledge with any comparison between LG’s G2 and C2 TVs is that they’re designed to appeal to different buyers.
The G2 is LG’s Gallery range: posh high-end models with an interior design aesthetic. Most obviously, G-series screens are intended for wall-mounting. The G2 has a uniform depth and comes with a bespoke mounting plate that holds it flush to the wall. You won’t find any feet in the package; if you need them, they’re an optional extra.
The C2 is LG’s volume workhorse range. Premium, to be sure, but aimed at the rest of us, balancing future-proofed features and price, and it comes in a multitude of screen sizes. In terms of image processing and smart TV features, there's no difference between the C2 and G2.
The C2 line sits above LG’s B2 and A2 ranges, which have their cloth cut to fit lower prices, including less advanced screen and processing technology. In total, LG will sell four 4K OLED ranges in 2022: the G2 and C2 featured here, and the B2 and A2 models. There will also be an LG Z2 8K TV.
LG C2 vs LG G2: technology comparison
Both the G2 and C2 employ the same picture processing engine, specifically the brand’s all-new gen 5 Alpha 9 processor.
We’re expecting big things from the Alpha 9 Gen 5. The chipset uses deep learning to enhance its upscaling performance, and comes with a number of image improvement technologies, including AI object enhancement, which apparently makes foreground and background elements more distinct from one another.
The silicon also boasts more advanced upscaling algorithms, able to better remove noise, and AI so smart it can determine both genre and scene information with an analytical clarity we haven’t seen before. Both the G2 and C2 also boast improvements when it comes to HDR tone mapping – although as they are capable of brighter HDR peak brightness than previous models, they should have less to do in that regard, compared to their cheaper stablemates and less rivals.
The new Alpha 9 Gen 5 engine isn’t just about picture handling. It expands the audio capabilities of the screens too, delivering more immersive audio courtesy of LG’s AI Sound Pro processing.
Connectivity on both the C2 and G2 models is uniformly class leading. All four HDMI 2.1 inputs on both sets will accept a 4K 120Hz input. Gamers can also take some satisfaction from the fact that they’re getting a full 48Gbps bandwidth (although this doesn’t buy you much extra, compared to HDMI inputs which are capped at 40Gbps).
Both models also use OLED Evo panels, and here’s where it gets interesting. The C2 actually uses the Evo panel we saw on last year's LG G1 model, while the G2 boasts a next-generation version.
Also helping the G2 is Brightness Boosting technology, which uses a new heat dissipation layer to enable the screen to push even brighter.
So both models boast high-brightness panels compared to previous OLEDs, it’s just that the C2 is using premium panel technology trickled down from last year’s Gallery model, and the new G2 gets the latest and greatest version.
LG C2 vs LG G2: performance compared
While we haven't been able to complete a full review of these TVs yet, we have been able to give them a good test in a side by side comparison. The LG C2 and LG G2 exhibit clear visual differences when placed next to each other, although they’re perhaps not as obvious as you might imagine.
Viewing the same content on a variety of uniform image presets, including Filmmaker mode and Standard, the G2 demonstrates a slightly higher overall brightness level, and appears to have slightly raised peak whites. Simply, put the G2 picture has more snap.
However the C2 is no slouch. It also demonstrates plenty of visual snap. Comparing the C2 to 2021’s C1 equivalent model immediately reveals the benefits of the OLED Evo panel and algorithm upgrades in the processing.
The difference between the two panels is also content dependent. Watching scenes from The Revenant on both screens confirmed marginal differences. The movie’s overall dark tone neutralising the G2’s picture bump. We spotted some more shadow detail, but that was about it.
Switching to the pre-crash sequence in Sully was more revealing. The brighter cinematography better demonstrated the more obvious brightness advantage of the G2. The white shirts of the cabin crew looked crisper, the blue skies brighter.
LG C2 vs LG G2: conclusion
LG is pushing the picture envelope with both its C2 and G2 models. We were wowed by the first-generation OLED Evo panel when it first appeared on the 2021 G1 model. With an average picture brightness boost and sumptuous colour fidelity, it set a new benchmark for OLED screens from LG. To have it on this year’s more affordable C2 is a tantalising prospect.
For those looking for even greater visual panache – in more ways than one – the LG G2 remains a compelling upgrade, though. An even brighter screen means even more impressive HDR, and the gorgeous slim wall-mounted design is fantastic.
We expect the C2 will remain as the more popular model of the two – it'll be significantly cheaper, for a start, yet with all the same features. And most people won't need such a wall-mounting focused design.