Ultrabooks have been around for a while, and many people love them because they’re lightweight and easy to carry. However, ultraportables usually have an important disadvantage: they’re small. Most ultrabooks come with 13 or 14-inch screens, and for some people, that’s not enough screen estate for productive use. And then comes the LG Gram 16 ultra-light laptop that offers a generous 16-inch screen while also being a champion of the lightweight division. With powerful hardware and engineered under the Intel Evo platform, it promises to offer everything you might want: ultra-portability, top-notch performance, a large screen, and beautiful design. To learn more, read this review:
The LG Gram 16 laptop is an excellent choice for:
- People who want an ultra-lightweight laptop that’s easy to carry
- Those who want an ultrabook with a large screen
- Anyone who appreciates minimalism and longs for a beautiful notebook
- Users looking for a portable laptop designed mainly for productivity on the go
There are many good things to say about the LG Gram 16:
- It comes with a powerful processor, plenty of RAM, and a fast solid-state drive
- Its display is high-quality and offers excellent color reproduction
- The keyboard is comfortable to type on, with backlit keys, and the trackpad is large
- The body is made from magnesium alloys, light and durable
- Its minimalist design is simply beautiful
- The selection of ports is more generous than you’d expect from an ultrabook
- The battery life is stellar
As for the downsides of the LG Gram 16:
- It’s quite expensive
- Some models don't have a touchscreen (depending on their price)
- There’s some bloatware preinstalled on it
The LG Gram 16 is one of the nicest ultrabooks we’ve ever tested. We loved it from our first encounter, and we’re pretty sure you will too. It’s a beautiful device with a minimalistic and well-thought design. If you’re a person who needs to work on the go and wants a genuinely portable notebook, the LG Gram 16 might be exactly what you should buy. It offers more than enough performance for any kind of productivity task, and its huge battery life can easily get you through a whole day of work without having to plug its charger into a power socket. If you have the money for it and you don’t necessarily want a touchscreen on your laptop, you should strongly consider the LG Gram 16.
The LG Gram 16Z90P notebook comes in an average-sized box made of premium dark-gray cardboard. As you can see in the picture below, it’s a minimalist package: the only thing printed on the box is gram.
Opening the box reveals the contents: the beautiful LG Gram laptop, its power adapter, and cable, and some installation guide documents.
Unboxing the LG Gram 16Z90P laptop is fast. We can only describe both the box and its contents as minimalistic. But, the laptop looks pretty cool at first sight. 🙂
LG Gram 16 is built on the Intel Evo Platform. It’s important to know what that means, so you can better understand its design and hardware choices.
Intel Evo laptops are premium, thin and light devices, co-engineered by Intel with its partners, characterized by some key technologies and design choices. They offer the following:
- A high degree of performance, as they need to have 11th Gen Intel Core processors and Intel Iris Xe graphics
- Huge battery life that surpasses 9 hours of work on Full HD screens
- Fast wireless networking, with built-in Intel Wi-Fi 6 network adapters
- Fast boot times
- Thunderbolt 4 ports
According to Intel, the Intel Evo Platform offers 25% faster CPU performance, 1.84 times faster graphic performance, 33% faster DDR4 (4266MHz), and support for NVMe storage. The CPU and Graphics performance numbers are based on Intel’s testing from August 2020.
The LG Gram 16Z90P model that we received in testing looks great. It features a beautiful black minimalist design, while the build quality is top-notch. The entire case of this ultrabook is made of magnesium alloy that feels great to the touch and provides good grip, resistance to scratches, durability, and, most of all, an extremely light bodyweight. We’re talking about premium craftsmanship here!
The whole LG Gram ultrabook comes with a large 16” screen, but somehow manages to weigh just 2.6 pounds (1.2 kg), while its charger only adds another 0.6 pounds (0.3 kg). Although fairly large for a regular ultrabook, measuring 14.01 inches (356 mm) in width and 9.58 inches in depth (243 mm), it’s incredibly slim, having a thickness of just 0.66 inches (16.8 mm). All in all, the LG Gram is what you’d call a truly ultraportable and ultrathin device, one which you can easily carry in one hand. Furthermore, its weight is practically negligible if you carry it in a backpack or even a purse.
On the back of the screen, LG engraved the gram name, but other than that, there are no other patterns or visual elements, no LED lights, or any other distracting elements.
The laptop’s screen hinges are barely visible but feel quite robust. When opened, the screen stays firmly in the position you set it. However, speaking of the screen’s robustness, probably because it’s so thin, we noticed that it bends quite easily, so a bit of care on this side won’t hurt.
On the LG Gram, you won’t find large air vents like on regular laptops. There’s just one large cooling grid made of countless tiny holes on its bottom.
Let’s get a glimpse of what’s under the hood. The LG Gram family of ultrabooks is huge and comes in many shapes and sizes, and the LG Gram 16 model that we tested is one of the most powerful. The “brain” of the Gram 16 is an Intel Tiger Lake Core i7-1165G7, with four cores and eight threads. The CPU runs at a base frequency of 2.8 GHz and a maximum Turbo Boost clock of 4.7 GHz. The CPU also offers 12 MB of Level 3 cache memory and has a default TDP of just 28 Watts.
In terms of memory, the laptop we tested had 16GB of DDR4 RAM running at a frequency of 4266 MHz. There are no available SO-DIMM slots available, as we’re talking about an ultrabook. Except for the SSD, which can be upgraded, all the other components, including the RAM, are soldered to the mainboard.
Regarding graphics, the LG Gram 16 laptop doesn’t come with a dedicated video card, instead relying on the GPU chip included in its processor: Intel Iris Xe Graphics.
The display uses an IPS 16” QHD (2560 x 1600 pixels) panel with a refresh rate of 60 Hz and 99% coverage of the DCI-P3 color space. It’s a beautiful screen, surrounded by small bezels, with excellent color reproduction and viewing angles. The only thing that’s a bit underwhelming is the fact that it’s glossy, so it doesn’t do that well outdoors, in bright sunlight.
As for storage, the LG Gram 16Z90P comes equipped with a fast 1 TB NVMe PCIe 3.0 solid-state drive made by Hynix.
The LG Gram 16Z90P does great in terms of wireless networking: you get Wi-Fi 6 (Intel AX201) with 2×2 MU-MIMO and Bluetooth 5.1. As for wired networking, LG didn’t include any Ethernet card, probably because the laptop is so thin by design.
Regarding audio, the LG Gram 16Z90P delivers it via a set of built-in stereo speakers found on its bottom. Both speakers are rated at 2.0 Watts each, and LG says that the speakers combined can deliver a maximum of 5 Watts using Smart Amp tech.
The LG Gram 16 is more generous than you’d expect from an ultrabook in terms of input/output ports. All of them are positioned on the left and right sides of the laptop - no port is found on the back or on the front edges. On the left, there is a full-sized HDMI 2.0 port, two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, and a 3.5mm combo audio jack, while on the right edge of the LG Gram 16, you get two USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports and a microSD card reader.
Finally, one of the strong points of the LG Gram 16 is its impressive battery. As thin as it is, this ultrabook bundles a battery with a capacity of 80 WHrs. To charge it, you get a 65W charger that you plug into one of the USB-C ports found on the left side of the laptop.
LG sends the Gram 16 laptop with Windows 10 preinstalled (our model had Windows 10 Home) and promises that you can upgrade to Windows 11. We can attest to that, as the first thing we did when we got it was install Windows 11 before running any benchmarks. 🙂
For more details about this laptop’s features and technical specs, and alternative configurations for it, visit the LG Gram 16 web page.
The LG Gram 16 is one of the most powerful and well-designed ultrabooks we’ve ever tested. Its hardware should be more than capable of handling any kind of productivity task.
On the next page of this review, we share details about the user experience, the software, and apps bundled with the LG Gram 16Z90P laptop, as well as its benchmark results.