Detailed review of Switch screen quality (and compared to 3DS) by Erica Griffin

Naked Snake

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Erica Griffin is a nerd and very picky when it comes to display quality and color calibration. I always appreciated her smartphone reviews containing a very detailed section just analyzing the screens. She did a video a while back about 3DS TN vs IPS (and variations within), and now she's done one on Switch vs New 3DS XL:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvDdaVZ7MCU

Switch screen can display full sRGB color gamut. 3DS doesn't come close:


3DS display severely lacks saturation in Reds (and some Blues), easy to see in skin-tones:


Switch screen has good calibration, black levels and contrast ratio (over 1000:1)


Nice colors that are not over saturated or have strange hue as on 3DS:


Though colors have a bit of a cool tone:


But 3DS is much worse:


Decent Gamma:




Good gray scale:


Brighter than 3DS XL (near 400 nits vs less than 200):


She mentions possible variations between units, but in her anecdotal experience it seems to be much more consistent than 3DS in that regard. I have also personally compared several Switch units and 3DS ones and found this to be the case.

Her overall score of the displays:

Switch: 9-9.5 out of 10
3DS: 4-5 out of 10 (depending if you get IPS or not)

PS: at the end she says something I'm not sure I understood correctly, but I think the gest of it is not to use the Switch "browser" video streaming to judge colors because they're not right (e.g. watching Youtube through current methods). Here's a comparison of the colors between Youtube on Switch (in its current unofficial form) and the same image on a webpage.





Kudos to Nintendo. You done good this time.
 

Toki767

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Definitely more satisfied with the Switch screen than any other screen Nintendo has used.
 

Spukc

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Well i got to give it to her she is very picky.
But my gosh i used to work at retail and i used to avoid those people as the plague impossible to please.
 

valkillmore

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For the minor issues she identifies with the screen, can one reasonably expect Nintendo to address them with subsequent hardware revisions? Has Nintendo done this in the past with previous portables they've taken through product revisions?
 

Naked Snake

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For the minor issues she identifies with the screen, can one reasonably expect Nintendo to address them with subsequent hardware revisions? Has Nintendo done this in the past with previous portables they've taken through product revisions?
Guys, we found someone who is more picky than Erica!
 

SciencePilot

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Great review. It's actually surprising to me how much better the Switch is than the 3DS. Things like this explain the higher cost.
 

Zafir

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Yeah the screen is much improved over its predecessors.

Just a shame there's still issues in manufacturing. Mine came with some dust under the screen. =/
 

-Mutsukki-

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Yeah the screen is much improved over its predecessors.

Just a shame there's still issues in manufacturing. Mine came with some dust under the screen. =/
That's unfortunately every piece of hardware with a screen. Manufacturing errors will realistically never disappear
 

VanWinkle

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Nice. It really is a pretty good screen. I'm used to high end displays on phones so it's not anything SPECIAL necessarily, but playing MK8 on it is honestly a really nice experience.
 

ggx2ac

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Iirc Japan Display Inc. (They produce the Switch LCD screens) also make LCD screens for Apple products so that definitely speaks to the quality of their product.
 

Kudo

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I initially dissed Switch for having 720p screen in 2017, but now that I have the thing I must admit I was very wrong, each day I hope Crunchyroll and Netflix would hurry the up with their apps so I could use it for streaming.
The IPS screen Switch uses is just delight to look at.
 

The Hermit

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Last time I've watched her video it was comparing 3DSs panels ( TN vs IPS) and I was impressed how thorough she was and how random those panels were.

Nintendo did good with the Switch in this aspect, thank God.
 

Madao

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i wonder which path the Switch will follow regarding hardware quality.
will the revisions be like handheld revisions and get better or like console revisions that only got worse over time?
 

NOLA_Gaffer

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I'm glad the screen isn't glass due to breakage but goddamn if my skin isn't just crawling every time I play the thing in handheld mode because I just know the damn thing can scratch if I look at it wrong.

It's mostly a home console because of that.
 

big_z

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I pointed out the 3ds screen lottery years ago and then it became a big thing. It drives me nuts and I wonder if it was the gaf thread that set he off. Might owe her an apology lol. But on the upside I'm happy Nintendo is at least putting some quality into the screen this time. Takes a little bit of the anxiety out of buying a switch.
 

Version 3.0

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I love this logic. like saying "I rammed by car into the curb and it ripped up my rims! Just buy shit ugly steel ones since you will just wreck it anyway!"
People aren't buying aftermarket plastic screens for their Switches, so your analogy isn't very good.

But if you were making cars that would often be driven by children, ugly steel rims might not be a bad idea.
 
Feb 24, 2010
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While I definitely prefer an AMOLED panel for contrast, gamma, and black levels, the display in the switch is easily their best yet. So much better than the atrocity that was the 3Ds Xl panel. Turning the brightness down added a piss filter lol.
 

Sword Of Doom

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i used my 3DS today for the first time since I bought my Switch and man that screen is bad. It's pretty rough going back to it


I'm baffled at the "1000:1 contrast is good" comment

Ok then

Well that's actual contrast ratio vs the 1 trillion to one or whatever you see on TV boxes and promo stuff. For an LCD panel, 1000:1 is decent
 

antonz

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I pointed out the 3ds screen lottery years ago and then it became a big thing. It drives me nuts and I wonder if it was the gaf thread that set he off. Might owe her an apology lol. But on the upside I'm happy Nintendo is at least putting some quality into the screen this time. Takes a little bit of the anxiety out of buying a switch.
Switching to a single supplier for the screen I imagine plays a big factor and the fact they left their usual suppliers behind.
 

Sub Boss

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Yeah for real, the colors on the Wii U Gamepad looked so washed out it made me hate actually using it. The Switch has a gorgeous screen! :)
Yeah i too wish she compared it to the Wii U gamepad instead
 

10k

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God this video just outlines how fucking cheap the tech was in 3DS to make autostereoscopic 3D affordable.

Bless the Switch. I love this thing more and more everyday.

I will say though I'm curious about the 2DS XL. That thing looks sleek as fuck.
 

Sub Boss

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For the minor issues she identifies with the screen, can one reasonably expect Nintendo to address them with subsequent hardware revisions? Has Nintendo done this in the past with previous portables they've taken through product revisions?
the common expectation is that they get worse over time
 

Cerium

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Iirc Japan Display Inc. (They produce the Switch LCD screens) also make LCD screens for Apple products so that definitely speaks to the quality of their product.
Using a single screen manufacturer is surely going to bottleneck their production though.

Would it be worth it to increase production with multiple suppliers even if it meant inconsistency in the screen?
 

KtSlime

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I love this logic. like saying "I rammed by car into the curb and it ripped up my rims! Just buy shit ugly steel ones since you will just wreck it anyway!"
If your suggestion is that people should be more careful to not drop their Switch, might I suggest to you not to scratch the screen? Then you should have no worry if the screen is glass or plastic.
 

Sub Boss

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I initially dissed Switch for having 720p screen in 2017, but now that I have the thing I must admit I was very wrong, each day I hope Crunchyroll and Netflix would hurry the up with their apps so I could use it for streaming.
The IPS screen Switch uses is just delight to look at.
Many Switch games are going to be sub HD/native already. Believe they made the best decision possible

People just want to look at a number.
 

Draper

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Yep, it's a very impressive screen.

Too bad it's not really a handheld...

Guys, I'm doing it! I'm taking this plane down!
 

Sub Boss

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We only have two examples so far and one of those was due to lolUnity and a 60fps patch.
Yep but its launch.better to keep expectations low than to be dissapointed.i expect Nintendo to do well on that though