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Nintendo Switch OLED vs Original (2021): What’s The Difference?

The latest iteration of the Nintendo Switch is slated for release on the 8th of October 2021. It comes with a bunch of new features, but unfortunately, it’s not the “Switch Pro” that a lot of people were hoping for. Nintendo announced its Nintendo Switch OLED console and it will sit alongside the original Nintendo Switch and the Switch Lite, so there will be three models to choose from. Aside from having an OLED screen, what other differences do the OLED version and the original have? Below is our Nintendo Switch OLED comparison against the original Nintendo Switch console.

Nintendo Switch OLED vs Nintendo Switch Comparison Chart

Model Nintendo Switch OLED Nintendo Switch
 Nintendo Switch – OLED Model w/ White Joy-ConNintendo Switch with Neon Blue and Neon Red Joy‑Con - HAC-001(-01)
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Dimensions4 x 9.5 x 0.55 inches4 x 9.4 x 0.55 inches
Weight0.93 lbs0.88 lbs
Display7-inch OLED
1280 x 720
Touch
6.2-inch LCD
1280 x 720
Touch
CPU/GPUCustom NVIDIA Tegra processorCustom NVIDIA Tegra processor
Storage64GB onboard
micro SD card (up to 2TB)
32GB onboard
micro SD card (up to 2TB)
ConnectivityWiFi
Bluetooth
WiFi
Bluetooth
Output Resolution1080p TV mode
720p handheld and desktop mode
1080p TV mode
720p handheld and desktop mode
Audio5.1 PCM (HDMI)
Stereo speakers (enhanced)
3.5mm jack
5.1 PCM (HDMI)
Stereo speakers
3.5mm jack
Battery Life4.5 – 9 hours4.5 – 9 hours
Charge Time3 hours3 hours

Design

The Nintendo Switch OLED is slightly wider and heavier than the original, but the difference is not significant and most people wouldn’t even notice.

nintendo switch oled vs original design
The Nintendo Switch OLED (left) and the original Nintendo Switch (right) have the same design.

When it comes to design, there’s not much difference between the Nintendo Switch OLED and the original console. The Nintendo Switch OLED is slightly longer, measuring 4 x 9.5 x 0.55 inches, while the original Nintendo Switch is measured at 4 x 9.4 x 0.55 inches. The difference is negligible. It’s the same story when it comes to their weight, with the Nintendo Switch OLED weighing 0.93 lbs and the original Nintendo Switch at 0.88 lbs.

The two consoles can be used in three modes—docked, handheld and desktop. The Nintendo Switch OLED dock is similar to the original’s when it comes to performance. When in docked mode, the two consoles are able to output a 1080p signal to your TV. However, the new dock now has an ethernet port that allows you to connect online with a cable.

Both come with removable Joy-Cons, a 3.5mm jack for your headphones and an adapter for the Joy-Cons. At the back, the kickstand is improved. The kickstand of the original Nintendo Switch is kind of small and unstable. The redesigned kickstand on the Nintendo Switch OLED is now wider and can be adjusted in multiple angles, providing better stability when used in desktop mode.

Display

Equipped with an OLED screen, the Nintendo Switch OLED can display better looking images than the original Nintendo Switch.

nintendo switch oled vs original display
The Nintendo Switch OLED (left) now has a 7-inch screen, compared to the 6.2-inch of the original (right).

The biggest difference between the two is with their display. The Nintendo Switch OLED screen is capable of displaying better contrast and more accurate images. The biggest improvements will be with the blacks and the whites. It also has a wider viewing angle than the LCD display of the original, which is useful when playing co-op while in desktop mode.

Aside from having a nicer looking screen, the Nintendo Switch OLED also has a larger one. It will come with a 7-inch screen that’s definitely a welcome upgrade over the 6.2-inch screen of the original. The bezels around the OLED Switch are smaller as well. That said, the resolution stays the same, at 1280 x 720.

Performance and Features

The Nintendo Switch OLED comes with more internal storage and better speakers, but it still has the same processor as the original Nintendo Switch.

nintendo switch oled vs original performance
The Nintendo Switch OLED (left) can still be used in desktop mode just like the original Nintendo Switch (right).

Internally, the two consoles are the same, with some minor differences. They have the same custom NVIDIA Tegra processor that’s a bit outdated for today’s games. They are capable of outputting 1080p images when docked, and when in handheld or desktop mode, they output 720p images. So far, there’s no difference.

However, Nintendo did mention that the Nintendo Switch OLED will come with enhanced on-board speakers. They didn’t specify what kind of improvements they’ve done, so we’ll just have to wait for the actual release of the console in order to find out. If you plan to use the new console with headphones, it still comes with a 3.5mm jack. However, if you plan to use Bluetooth headphones, unfortunately, Nintendo still hasn’t added that feature.

In terms of internal storage, the Nintendo Switch OLED will come with 64GB of built-in storage, which is a major upgrade over the 32GB of the original. 64GB is still a bit low by today’s standards, but it’s acceptable. You can expand the storage with a microSD card up to 2TB.

Battery Life

The Nintendo Switch OLED and the original Nintendo Switch have the same battery capacity.

nintendo switch oled vs original battery life
Both the Nintendo Switch OLED and original still have removable Joy-Cons.

The two consoles are equipped with a 4310mAh Lithium-Ion battery. They have a battery life of 4.5 hours to 9 hours, depending on the games that you play. The charging time is approximately 3 hours.

Since an OLED screen is more power-efficient than the LCD screen of the original Nintendo Switch, you would think that the new model will be more battery-efficient. However, that’s not the case here since the OLED Switch will have a bigger screen. The bigger screen of the OLED Switch will eat up more power, so all the savings from its OLED screen’s efficiency is negated. It’s likely that the two consoles will still have similar battery performance.

Verdict

If you already own a Nintendo Switch, it may not be worth it to upgrade to the OLED model, unless you really want the new OLED screen. However, if you are buying your first Nintendo Switch console, the OLED version is worth waiting for.

As good as the Nintendo Switch OLED sounds, it just doesn’t offer any significant upgrades over the original when it comes to performance. Yes, the screen is nice, and doubling the internal storage is definitely a welcome addition. However, games will still play the same, with no considerable improvement. If you already own the original Nintendo Switch, upgrading to the OLED version may not be worth it. However, if you are buying your first Nintendo Switch, the Nintendo Switch OLED is the best version that you can get, and even though it’s slightly more expensive, the difference in price is worth it. You’ll get a nicer looking screen, more internal storage, a LAN port and an improved kickstand for desktop mode.

FAQs

📌 Is there a Nintendo Switch OLED 4K?

As of now, there is no Nintendo Switch OLED 4K model. The only available models are the original Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Switch Lite and the recently announced Nintendo Switch OLED.

📌 Is the OLED Switch better?

It has a better screen, double the internal storage and an improved dock that now comes with a LAN port. It also has a more stable kickstand than the original Nintendo Switch. However, internally, the two consoles are the same.

📌 What’s the difference between the Nintendo Switch and Switch OLED?

The most obvious difference is with their screens. The original Nintendo Switch has a 6.2-inch LCD screen while the OLED Switch, as its name suggests, has an OLED screen that’s also bigger, measuring 7 inches.

📌 Is the Nintendo Switch OLED bigger?

It’s slightly wider and heavier than the original Nintendo Switch, but the difference is negligible.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.