Ludicrously overpriced at launch, a recent 50% price reduction makes the LG UltraGear GP9 gaming speaker a worthy consideration for those on the hunt for a simple, minimalistic 1-terminate solution for headphone-less gaming.
- Wide soundscape for more immersive gaming
- Gamer aesthetic
- Built-in microphone
- Compact build
- Poor music playback
- Significantly overpriced RRP
Customisable RGB lighting
Allows you to modify the colours of the RGB lighting on the speaker
Built-in mic with noise cancellation
Can employ the speaker to chat to your friends online, while blocking out background noise
Up to 5-hour bombardment life
Tin can exist placed out of attain of a plug socket thanks to internal bombardment
More than a decade of testing and reviewing tech has, I admit, turned me into a far more than cynical critic than the optimistically eager, younger version of me that gazed upon every new gadget with adoring eyes.
Had my immature cocky meet the LG UltraGear GP9, he’d have been sucked in past its “XTREME GAMER” marketing and ambitious, athwart looks. And, of course, the RGB lighting. There was no such affair every bit as well much flashy LED action back then (and, depending on your perspective, there even so isn’t).
Now, years on, my immediate impression of a product such as the GP9 is that of cautious cynicism. The trend of releasing tech injected with stealth-bomber blueprint Dna and slapping a “Made for Gamers” tag on information technology has become all too prevalent, and also oftentimes better performance tin be elsewhere, albeit in more “tiresome”-looking packages.
Having said that, the UltraGear GP9 gaming speaker has enough going for it. It promises to elevate your gaming experience with a well-baked, vast soundscape, with a plethora of connectivity options, and even a congenital-in mic for comms to kicking. All of this is wrapped in a compact package that neatly sits under your screen – and it’south even battery-powered, if you wanted information technology to double up every bit a Bluetooth speaker.
Even so, with an eye-watering RRP of £499 it’s priced as loftier, if not higher, than some top-notch desktop speakers that outclass its audio capabilities in every believable way. While the likes of Currys has recently slashed that price in half (strongly supporting our way-overpriced theory), it’s still a fair chunk of change to function with – which is the reason I spent a few weeks with it as our main speaker to give you the full lowdown.
- Gamer aesthetic
- Congenital like a tank
- Delightfully compact
While some people might prefer a plain black box sitting on their desk (which is more than fair enough), looks are completely subjective, and I applaud what LG’s design team has washed here.
The ambitious, angular look of the LG UltraGear GP9 is hitting, and its trapezium-esque shape and slanted front grilles, complete with RGB lighting, absolutely nails the coveted gamer aesthetic. It won’t exist everyone, but if this is the sort of look yous’re subsequently to complement your RGB setup and have an in-your-confront gaming monitor, the GP9 volition feel right at home.
Despite being made from plastic, the GP9 feels as sturdy equally a stone– and weighty enough that you lot wouldn’t desire to lug information technology around for an extended catamenia of time, nor accidentally drop information technology on your toes. Bar the headphone jack, all of the rear ports are subconscious behind a large rectangular rubber flap, while 2 bass ports on either side are cleverly hidden from the front by the angled corners.
As for the RGB lighting, it’s most prominent in the gamified LG logo on the front of the speaker, as well every bit at the top of the slanted grilles. Regardless of which colour you choose (set via LG’southward Xboom app), the effect in the dark is quite striking, with light haemorrhage out of the grilles and spilling beyond your desk. If you accept a specific colour theme in your battle-station setup, the GP9 will comfortably blend in.
- Multiple connectivity options (although no AUX in)
- Adjustable EQ in the LG Xboom app
- Congenital-in microphone
The LG UltraGear GP9 packs in multiple connectivity options, offer some welcome flexibility in the form of USB-C audio, optical and Bluetooth. If you lot’re rocking a gaming PC and so USB audio makes the most sense, especially since there’s a USB-C cable included in the box.
Bluetooth will primarily be used with a smartphone for music, peculiarly since the built-in 2,600mAh battery lets it double up every bit a portable Bluetooth speaker. Given its weight, long shape and questionable music functioning (more on that in the adjacent department), yet, you’d exist better off with an actual dedicated Bluetooth speaker for on-the-go listening.
It’s worth noting that if you have a PS5 or Xbox Series X, then you might run into problems depending on your setup. Since both next-gen consoles have dropped optical output, you lot’ll have to connect the GP9 to your TV/monitor via an optical cable instead. This isn’t a problem, unless your panel is hooked up to a monitor. If that’southward the case, y’all’re essentially out of luck, since monitors don’t take optical or USB-C outputs. They do tend to have AUX outputs, though, which would work, except the GP9 rather shockingly lacks an AUX-in port.
Long story curt, if you have either of the new consoles hooked up to a monitor as opposed to a TV, the GP9 will be about as useless equally a brick (admitting a bright and flashy one). Part of the blame lies with Microsoft and Sony for not allowing their consoles to output sound over Bluetooth (which remains ridiculous); but still, an AUX input on a speaker at such a cost is hardly a big enquire – particularly since information technology is, y’all know, fabricated for gamers.
There’s some good news when it comes to the Xboom app, though – it works well, letting you easily customise your RGB lighting and create a tailored EQ preset. The latter can be activated past an EQ button on the top of the speaker, where it’southward joined by FPS and RTS buttons too. These buttons toggle your chosen way, depending on what you’re playing.
Lastly, there’south a built-in headphone jack on the speaker’due south rear if you fancy wearing headphones for a more immersive, private gaming session. Here, you’ll find a beautifully tactile and chunky volume dial, too, which also houses the mute button for the handy built-in microphone. These features mean the GP9 is a bully selection for video calls in addition to gaming, making information technology a useful tool whether y’all’re bravado upwardly aliens or going through a mind-numbing deck on a work Zoom call.
- Immersive audio for gaming
- Poor music performance
- Decent mic
Burn up a game with the LG UltraGear GP9 for the commencement time and you lot’ll be very pleased with the results. Using the FPS preset on Halo Infinite results in a beautifully clear and wide soundscape. Gunshots echo threateningly, explosions are well-baked, and everything but feels more immersive.
There is a noticeable divergence between the regular mode and FPS way, with the latter making information technology easier to hear enemy footsteps, including the direction from which they’re coming. No speaker will shell a pair of headphones for immersion, of grade, but the GP9 does a superb task of bringing games to life. The RTS manner flattens things out a bit more, and fifty-fifty with no special modes on, gaming sound impresses across the board.
Plug in a pair of headphones and you’ll exist treated to a virtual vii.1 DTS headphone experience, as well, which delivers top-notch positional tracking and even better immersion. The trouble is, this is a gaming speaker with a £500 RRP, and so while a prissy to have, this characteristic seems a scrap moot given the fact that you could spend less money on headphones for the same virtual feel.
The thing that really lets everything downward, though, is the GP9’south not-gaming performance. It’southward all very well having a speaker that lets you know when an enemy spartan is running up from behind looking to skewer yous with an energy sword, but the same soundscape practical to music sounds… well, it’south pretty awful.
Across dissimilar genres, the music experience on the GP9 isn’t exactly a pleasant ane. With frequencies muddying together, imbalanced bass that often overpowers, and a general feeling of underlying tinniness and occasional clipping at higher volumes, it isn’t good news. You tin help things out a fleck by playing around with the blaster settings in the app, but for a £500 speaker (or fifty-fifty a £350 speaker given the current price slash), you’d look much, much more.
Catastrophe on a more than positive note, the built-in microphone works surprisingly well, although I by and large used information technology for work calls, as I’d much rather be using headphones for gaming with vocalism chat on.
Should you purchase information technology?
You want a mini-soundbar with a gaming aesthetic:
LG has nailed the expect and feel of the GP9, with its aggressive styling and customisable RGB smarts.
Yous desire value for money:
Looks and gaming performance aside, information technology makes far more sense to spend less coin on like/ameliorate-sounding products.
In that location’s no ii ways most information technology – at £500, the UltraGear GP9 is one of the almost insanely overpriced products to always grace my desk. There’s merely no fashion in any believable reality where that’s a fair cost given its music performance.
With its recent price cut at some retailers bumping the price downwardly to £250, though, the GP9 is manifestly a bit more highly-seasoned. Afterward all, it offers great gaming operation and aesthetics, and the congenital-in mic is a genuinely useful addition. If yous’re a hardcore gamer looking for a compact desktop speaker only for gaming that oozes RGB-mode, in that location’s nada else out at that place quite like the GP9.
How we examination
Nosotros test every soundbar nosotros review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We employ industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what nosotros detect. Nosotros never, always, accept money to review a product.
Find out more about how we exam in our ethics policy.
Tested over several weeks
Tested with both games and music
You might like…
Does the LG UltraGear GP9 work with consoles?
Technically, yes, but the PS5 and Xbox Serial X lack the required optical connection, and then y’all’ll demand to plug it into your Tv instead. If you take a monitor that lacks that connection, yous may exist out of luck.
Does the LG UltraGear GP9 come with a remote control?
No, you demand to apply your smartphone.
Great britain RRP
First Reviewed Date
LG UltraGear GP9
376 x 86 x 108 MM
Posted by: Sadiyev.com