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Nintendo Switch vs Switch Lite VS Switch OLED

Updated 22 September 2021

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Author
Author avatar Daniel Booth

Daniel is our primary content producer here at TheToyZone. He is a big kid at heart and a self-confessed geek. His mission is to find toys that kids will treasure.

I’ve been a long-time fan of Nintendos’ handheld consoles since I first received an original Game Boy for my 10th birthday. So, with the impending release of Nintendo’s latest update of the hugely popular Switch console, I wanted to look into the differences between the three versions and determine which is right for you.

Rumors have been running wild for some time now about Nintendo were going to better the multi-million selling Switch and multi-colored Switch Lite. We even had a crack at some Nintendo Switch Pro designs we would love to see from the gaming giants (my favorite is our SNES Switch). The time has arrived as Nintendo release pre-orders for the new Switch OLED.

Preview
Nintendo Switch (OLED model) w/ White Joy-Con
Nintendo Switch with Neon Blue and Neon Red Joy‑Con - HAC-001(-01)
Nintendo Switch Lite - Blue
Display
7-inch OLED touchscreen
6.2-inch LED touchscreen
5.5-inch LED touchscreen
Resolution
720p handheld/1080p docked
720p handheld/1080p docked
720p
Storage
64GB (expandable)
32GB (expandable)
32GB (expandable)
Chipset
Custom Nvidia Tegra X1
Custom Nvidia Tegra X1
NVIDIA Custom Tegra processor
Battery life
Approx. 4.5 - 9 hours
Approx. 4.5 - 9 hours
Approx. 3 - 7 hours
Connectivity
USB-C, 3.5mm audio, microSD, wired LAN
USB-C, 3.5mm audio, microSD
USB Type-C (charging only)
Size
9.5 x 4 x 0.55 inches
9.4 x 4 x 0.55 inches
8.2 x 3.6 x 0.55 inches
Weight
Approx. 0.93 pounds
Approx. 0.88 pounds
Approx. 0.61 pounds
Price
Price not available
$299.00
$200.34
Product Name
Preview
Nintendo Switch (OLED model) w/ White Joy-Con
Display
7-inch OLED touchscreen
Resolution
720p handheld/1080p docked
Storage
64GB (expandable)
Chipset
Custom Nvidia Tegra X1
Battery life
Approx. 4.5 - 9 hours
Connectivity
USB-C, 3.5mm audio, microSD, wired LAN
Size
9.5 x 4 x 0.55 inches
Weight
Approx. 0.93 pounds
Price
Price not available
More information
Product Name
Preview
Nintendo Switch with Neon Blue and Neon Red Joy‑Con - HAC-001(-01)
Display
6.2-inch LED touchscreen
Resolution
720p handheld/1080p docked
Storage
32GB (expandable)
Chipset
Custom Nvidia Tegra X1
Battery life
Approx. 4.5 - 9 hours
Connectivity
USB-C, 3.5mm audio, microSD
Size
9.4 x 4 x 0.55 inches
Weight
Approx. 0.88 pounds
Price
$299.00
More information
Product Name
Preview
Nintendo Switch Lite - Blue
Display
5.5-inch LED touchscreen
Resolution
720p
Storage
32GB (expandable)
Chipset
NVIDIA Custom Tegra processor
Battery life
Approx. 3 - 7 hours
Connectivity
USB Type-C (charging only)
Size
8.2 x 3.6 x 0.55 inches
Weight
Approx. 0.61 pounds
Price
$200.34
More information

1Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Switch

Ah, the Nintendo Switch. The perfect addition to the family which took handheld gaming to the next level.

With its two detachable Joy-Con controllers, the Switch took customary single-player handheld gaming into the multi-player world. Nintendo is all about enjoying games with others so the world was overjoyed with this factor upon its release.

What better way to share the gaming experience than to be able to attach your Switch through HDMI to your TV. This allowed players to actually see a split-screen without huddling around a 6.2-inch screen.

With over 80 million units sold, there’s no wonder the Switch is a universally loved Nintendo console for the whole family.

What we love

  • Has touchscreen LCD display
  • Can be used with up to 4 players
  • Access to a multitude of games and online multiplayer with Nintendo Switch Online membership

What We Don't Like That Much

  • Can be harder to play for smaller kids due to its size

2Switch Lite

Switch Lite

It took Nintendo over two to bring us their first update with the Switch Lite. This smaller, lighter version took the same fantastic gameplay and condensed it into an exclusively handheld console. It may not have all the cool features like detachable controllers and TV attachments, but all this is reflected in the price.

The Switch Lite instantly became a gamers’ favorite travel console. You can still play pretty much all of the same games as the original Switch (except a few that require a TV) on the 5.5-inch LCD which has the same resolution so no quality is lost. The advantage is, you can easily pack this into a bag or even fit it in your pocket.

In true Nintendo fashion, the Switch Lite is fashion. They have released the console in a range of different colors to perfectly match your style including turquoise, yellow, blue, and my favorite, coral.

What we love

  • It’s $100 less than the OG Switch
  • Has no detachable parts to loose
  • Perfect gaming for smaller kids

What We Don't Like That Much

  • Doesn’t have a dock to connect to a TV screen

3Switch OLED

Switch OLED

So, what’s new? Let’s start with the obvious. Nintendo is never usually been one to market a console on visual technology (generally left to PlayStation and Xbox), but rather pioneer playability. This time seems to be different. Instead of coming out with something completely new, they’ve opted to update by incorporating a larger OLED screen into the handheld console.

What is OLED?

It stands for Organic Light-minded Diode. Basically, without boring you with all the science (you can do that yourself on Wikipedia) an OLED display works without a backlight because it emits its own visible lights. In Layman’s terms, it provides a crystal clear display with deep black levels and a higher contrast ratio.

That’s the selling point right there. Crystal clear gaming on a 13% larger screen. But that’s not all:

  • Even though the screen is larger, Nintendo designers have reduced the size of the bezels around the screen meaning the Switch OLED is pretty much the same size as the original Switch.
  • They’ve updated the kickstand for tabletop mode by making it wider and substantially sturdier than the original which proved kinda precarious.
  • It will come in either Neon blue and red or a crisp, cool white (which we love).

Of course, we’ll be bringing you a full review of the Switch OLED when it drops in October with no stone unturned.

Which Switch is Best for You?

This question boils down to what you want to get out of the Switch.

Are you all about spinning around Rainbow Road throwing bananas and shells at your nearest and dearest on the big screen? Exploring vast worlds role-playing as legendary heroes on the commute to work? Or are you a serious gamer who must have the clearest possible display for hunting vampires in misty lands?

For versatility, the Switch and Switch OLED will give you the best gaming experience in terms of playability. You have the option to play against opponents both in your home and online. They both connect to your TV through an HDMI cable to enhance your quest, race, and/or battle on a big screen.

For those solitary gamers who are looking for a lightweight console to take with them on the road with no need for a big screen or detachable controllers, then the Switch Lite is the logical choice. Plus it comes in different colors, what’s not to love about that?

Let’s talk money. Coming in at the lowest price is the Switch Lite which retails at $199. Your options aren’t as plentiful but a handheld console, this has everything you expect from the masters at Nintendo. The Original Switch comes in at around $299 although the word on the street is that price may drop when the OLED is released (at least in Europe). At around $349.99 (pre-order) the Switch OLED is obviously the most expensive but you’re spending your hard-earned money on the only Nintendo console to have an OLED screen.

Bottom Line

If you already own a Switch, I wouldn’t rush out to be buying the OLED version. Apart from the screen and the improved stand, there’s not a whole lot new to justify swapping out your existing console. If you don’t already own one, I would definitely recommend saving those extra pennies and getting yourself the latest version. You won’t regret spending the additional money when you see how crisp the screen is compared to the original.

With new games like FIFA 22 (Legacy Edition) and The Legend of Zelda: Breathe of the Wild 2 on the horizon, now is the time to get immerse yourself in the Switch universe. JOIN US!

When you’re all set up with your brand new Switch, which games do you need?

We got you covered, check out our extensive reviews of the best switch games for a range of different ages.