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LG Prada II fashionista phone

Something more practical this season

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One welcome addition is pinch-to-zoom multi-touch control, which can be used when you’re swiping through the phone’s image gallery or looking at files opened by the Picsel document viewer. But it really makes a difference in the browser. It's so much simpler to work your way around pages and zoom in and out of screens just by using two fingers.

LG Prada II

The 5Mp camera's a nice upgrade on the original Prada

The browser provides tabs for flicking between websites, and can auto-rotate to a widescreen view for more screen space. It works well for a mainstream mobile browser, though Flash isn’t fully supported, and we occasionally experienced memory issues with some data-heavy sites.

The 5Mp camera puts in a decent enough performance. It may not have all the frills of LG’s 8Mp Renoir, but it can take some high-quality snaps in good lighting conditions, the phone handling colour rendition and exposure well. The two-step autofocus locks on to subjects smartly, though you should watch out for a momentary lag if you’re just taking a quick one-press snap. Close-up shots were particularly pleasing, with crisp and detailed results. Low light shooting was less satisfactory - the LED flash has limited effect in dark conditions.

The touchscreen controls are easy to operate, with clearly illustrated options appearing when the camera fires up and auto-rotates the screen into landscape mode. All the usual cameraphone picture adjustements - white balance, image stabilisation, effects and so on - are present if you want to override the auto settings. The camera has a lens certified by optics specialist Schneider-Kreuznach, though there’s no cover for it and none of the smile and blink detection, and touch-to-focus tricks you get on the Renoir.

The camera puts in a better-than-normal showing for video shooting. It has a slow-motion capture mode, plus smooth regular shooting – it can record at 30f/s in 640 x 480 or 720 x 480 resolution. Footage isn’t bad for a mobile phone, provided there’s good lighting,and there's a decent set of editing facilities to splice clips with transitions, add a soundtrack and so on.

LG Prada II

The Micro SD card slot's conveniently placed

The Prada II’s screen is good for video playback. The handset supports DivX, with PC DivX conversion software bundled on the same CD as LG’s PC Suite syncing software. PC Suite can also be used to transfer music to the phone, or you can drag-and-drop files. Left the bundled USB cable at home? Use Bluetooth 2.1+EDR. All the standard audio and video formats are supported.

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