LG StanbyMe Go portable briefcase TV review: impractical fun

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LG StanbyMe Go (27LX5) Review

LG StanbyME Go 27-inch Briefcase Design Touch Screen

MSRP $1,200.00

“The StanbyMe Go is simply a blast to use, ne'er mind nan practicality.”


  • Ridiculously fun
  • Built-in streaming apps
  • Solid image quality
  • Suitably agleam for shaded outdoor use


  • High brightness shortens artillery life
  • Fairly heavy
  • Expensive

Maybe it’s because I’m a kid of nan 1980s, but LG’s StanbyMe Go portable briefcase TV gives maine superior Cloak & Dagger vibes (we’re talking the Dabney Coleman classic, not nan newer Marvel series). It looks for illustration nan benignant of briefcase that would clasp concealed files aliases immoderate benignant of specialized hacking system. It’s sewage cool facet oozing retired of it.

But nan important mobility present is: What do you person near erstwhile nan cool facet wears off? After all, erstwhile you’ve already amazed each your friends pinch what it is, what’s near is what it tin really do. What tin — and possibly much important, what can’t — nan LG StanbyMe Go do?

Video review

Case successful point

The LG StanbyMe Go — yes, that’s StanbyMe, not StandByMe — weighs 28 pounds. That’s not thing for thing you’re meant to lug around. It’s not going to springiness you a difficult clip toting it from your car to a picnic table, aliases crossed nan parking batch to your friend’s tailgate. But unless you’re a existent hardcore hiker, you’re not going to wanna return this point backpacking.

The metallic doesn’t consciousness ace heavy, but it does consciousness durable – this lawsuit isn’t conscionable for show.

I fishy astir of nan StanbyMe Go’s weight tin beryllium attributed to its lithium-ion artillery pack, but I reckon immoderate of it whitethorn beryllium owed to nan case. The metallic doesn’t consciousness ace heavy, but it does consciousness durable. This lawsuit isn’t conscionable for show; it’s designed to protect nan TV and batteries inside, and I get nan emotion it will. As overmuch arsenic I’d for illustration to person a spare StanbyMe Go astir that I could maltreatment by swinging hammers astatine it and dropping it from expanding altitudes, I do not. That occupation remains unfastened to anyone pinch a spare $1,200 and nary affectional attachments to cool tech.

Speaking of lithium-ion batteries and altitude, nan StanbyMe Go seems for illustration precisely nan benignant of instrumentality that is going to origin you problem if you return it connected a plane. Maybe it’s OK to hide that you packed a mates of small camera artillery cells successful your checked luggage (editor’s note: It’s not!), but ideate answering for this point aft it goes done nan checked luggage scanner. I suppose you could dainty it arsenic carry-on luggage. But do you really want much of nan TSA’s attraction successful your life? Because this is going to get that for you. I guarantee it. Besides, unless you’re flying first class, this isn’t fitting successful nan overhead bin aliases nether nan spot successful beforehand of you.

So, wherever could you return it? We’ll get to that successful a moment. Let’s get done nan remainder of nan important specs first.

And what’s successful nan briefcase?

The StanbyMe Go charges disconnected a modular two-prong powerfulness cable. These are easy and inexpensive to switch if you hap to suffer it.

Flip nan 2 latches, unfastened up nan case, and you’ll beryllium greeted pinch nan show lying level connected nan bottommost level. Behind that is nan speaker strategy — and a small reminder that Dolby Atmos is simply a marque now, and not nan sanction of a circumstantial audio experience. But we will talk astir that audio soon.

A LG StanbyMe Go group up successful nan trunk of a car. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

Lift nan TV sheet and you’ll find that it has a singular scope of motion. You tin position it up high, settee it down low, and if you want to watch vertical videos, you tin simply rotate it.

The surface itself is simply a 1080p LCD touchscreen. So, yes, you tin power it for illustration a elephantine tablet. But, also, LG includes a magic-motion distant pinch nan kit truthful you tin usage it for illustration nan tv it is.

Because this is a TV right? I’ve been calling it that for a while. I person seen others telephone it that. But, is it? Really?

Technically, nary it is not. It does not person a TV tuner built-in. So if you wanted to station up successful nan parking batch and erect an antenna for nan purposes of pulling down your section broadcast stations, that isn’t happening.

A LG StanbyMe Go show successful vertical predisposition displaying apps. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

That is nan only point that prevents this from being considered a TV — and that’s by nan Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) definition, not my own. Aside from nan deficiency of a tuner, this behaves for illustration an LG TV. And that includes LG’s webOS strategy and each nan apps and functionality that travel pinch it, conscionable for illustration LG’s TVs that you can’t transportation pinch you. You tin watercourse Netflix, usage Apple AirPlay, play stored media, and moreover link devices via HDMI. And yes, that includes crippled consoles.

Battery life

LG claims nan StanbyMe Go, conscionable for illustration nan original StanbyMe, will past connected artillery powerfulness for up to 3 hours. That should beryllium a reddish emblem to you by now. Any clip thing pinch a artillery is claimed to past “up to” immoderate peculiar time, you should astir apt conscionable instantly trim that down by astir 30%. On its champion day, successful Eco mode and low-power mode, you will so apt get astir 3 hours. However, you astir apt are not going to want to usage it that way. To get nan champion brightness from this TV, you’ll want to tally it successful a high-power mode, which will trim down nan artillery life. So you mightiness want to person immoderate backup powerfulness disposable for longer viewing sessions. Might I urge 1 of our favourite portable powerfulness stations?


Now, we travel to what I deliberation whitethorn beryllium nan astir valuable information of this review: How agleam does it get?

Before I get into telling you really galore nits this point tin put retired and past explaining what that really intends for you, fto maine make you alert of nan alleged “Outdoor TV market” and what’s going connected pinch that full thing.

An LG StanbyMe Go briefcase TV unfastened and propped connected apical of an outer artillery supply. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

My acquisition pinch enjoying TV outdoors, specifically connected outdoor TVs, stretches backmost a agelong way. It started pinch my first SunBriteTV 11 years agone — I really put that point done nan wringer. A small complete a twelvemonth later, I tried retired different SunBriteTV. More recently, I knowledgeable nan beast that is nan Samsung Terrace. Along nan way, I’ve done plentifulness of RV-ing, during which I person tested plentifulness of non-outdoor TVs, arsenic good arsenic outdoor-specific models made for RVers from nan likes of Furrion.

The StanbyMe Go is very overmuch not an outdoor TV.

I’ve seen ’em all. And moreover those TVs that declare to beryllium bully for afloat sun? Well, they are visible, that’s true. But they besides are insanely expensive. There are indoor TVs that tin get arsenic agleam arsenic immoderate outdoor TVs, but those super-expensive things put each nan money into processing and thing into weatherproofing and dustproofing.

True outdoor TVs are connected their ain very specific, usually very expensive, level. I constituent that retired because nan StanbyMe Go is very overmuch not an outdoor TV. It’s a portable TV that tin spell outdoors, and I really for illustration that. This is measurement much elastic and useful to maine than a fixed, ever outdoors TV.

But this besides intends you request to return attraction to protect nan StanbyMe Go — and temper your expectations a bit. Take it to nan beach? Sure, but beryllium prepared to vacuum retired nan sand. Taking it camping? Cool, conscionable don’t put it adjacent to nan cooler and expect it to grip a spilled soda. Taking it tailgating? Awesomesauce — unless that condiment is BBQ sauce, successful which case, not truthful awesome for this TV.

An LG StanbyMe Go briefcase TV showing a shot crippled during tailgating. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

Generally speaking, you’re going to want shadiness for this TV, either made by quality aliases provided by you. Without shade, you’re gonna person to juice up this TV, and that brightness-goosing is going to deed nan battery.

This portable TV — successful vivid mode, pinch each powerfulness redeeming abnormal — tin put retired astir 500 nits full-screen. Matter of fact, that’s arsenic agleam arsenic it gets for HDR highlights, too. To get that benignant of brightness, though, you person to cognize really to move disconnected all power saving, which I missed while shooting nan tailgating segment successful our video. The TV is not arsenic agleam arsenic it tin really get successful that segment.

The onboard artillery will get you done astir movies aliases a fewer episodes of your favourite show.

Toward nan extremity of our video, we get a amended shot, though connected a somewhat darker day, and it is simply a amended practice of what nan Stanbyme G0 astatine its brightest looks for illustration outdoors, unless it is simply a cloudless time pinch afloat sun. So while 500 nits is awesome wrong — that’s not capable punch to put up overmuch of an outdoor conflict against nan brightest entity successful our star system.

With a canopy — beryllium that nan 10-by-10 pop-up type aliases nan stand-of-Douglas-fir-type — you’re going spot this TV conscionable fine. For astir 2 hours aliases so. Which leads maine to my adjacent point.

If you’re going to tailgate pinch this point aliases want to watch it for immoderate important magnitude of clip successful nan car aliases while camping, etc., I propose having immoderate backup powerfulness on truthful that you tin powerfulness it straight aliases complaint it backmost up. Or possibly you tin conscionable complaint it disconnected your EV aliases from your car if you’re driving.

Two cervid successful nan wood displayed connected an LG StanbyMe Go show resting connected nan hood of a car. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

The onboard artillery will get you done astir movies aliases a fewer episodes of your favourite show. And if you’re successful a dim aliases acheronian environment, spell up and move connected low-power mode and you tin get done astir movies that aren’t made by Peter Jackson. But for extended fun, you’ll request immoderate power.

I should besides mention that nan StanbyMe Go’s onboard sound strategy is wholly respectable. It’s plentifulness large for in-car listening, watching successful a hotel, camping successful a quiet place, aliases moreover chill tailgating. For much raucous environments, I would propose utilizing a larger outer speaker either via Bluetooth aliases utilizing nan aux-out port.

Bottom line

Look, this point is conscionable fun. I emotion it. I’ve had a blast playing astir pinch nan StanbyMe Go. I deliberation nan astir important point for you to cognize is that moreover connected an overcast day, it’s still agleam capable extracurricular to situation this and astir LCD TVs for visibility. Plan to find it and yourself immoderate shadiness for nan champion outdoor enjoyment. Otherwise, there’s nary logic you can’t return nan StanbyMe Go anyplace you want entertainment.

The adjacent important point for you to cognize is that it costs $1,200. It mightiness travel backmost down aft respective months but, well, I’m not judge LG is going to make (or sell) a ton of these things, truthful this mightiness beryllium 1 of those times you’re amended disconnected getting 1 soonish if you really want one.

And if you do get one? Can we commencement an Instagram hashtag and show our StanbyMe’s successful nan craziest places crossed nan world? That’s astir nan only point I tin ideate that would make nan StanBy Me Go anymore much nosy than it already is.

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