While gaming in handheld mode, Nintendo's new Switch console actually runs quite cool and only hits a max of 37C in demanding games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.
While attending a Nintendo Switch event a Swedish gamer took some FLIR images of the system in handheld mode to see how hot the device gets. Considering the Switch can deliver dedicated on-the-go gaming, thermal heat mitigation is extremely important, and we're happy to report the device runs pretty cool.
Thanks to recent teardowns we know the Switch is actively cooled by a fan system that works in tandem with an L-shaped heat sink, and, of course, the customized and highly efficient 20nm NVIDIA Tegra X1 chip.
Three games were shot with FLIR images: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which would be the more demanding of the three games, Snipperclips: Cut it Out Together!, and Splatoon 2. In all of these scenarios the Nintendo Switch was in handheld mode and being charged by a USB Type-C charger, so that means these temps could actually be cooler.
Mario Kart 8 ran an average 25.2C and peaked at 37.6C; Snipperclips ran at about 24.3C on average and peaked at 35.7C; and Splatoon 2 hit an average temp of 21.2C and hit highest peak thermals of 35C.
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Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Minimum temps - 18.6°C
Average temps - 25.2°C
Max temps - 37.6°C
"It did not feel that warm to the touch and the game was running really really smooth, you were to engaged in the game to think about the unit or how it felt in you hands. You can clearly see the CPU/GPU on the right side of the unit behind the screen. Working hard under 40°C."
Minimum temps - 19.6°C
Average temps - 24.3°C
Max temps - 35.7°C
"Standing on its own while being connected to a charger. You can really see how the right side (no joycon connected) is transferring the heat generated from the CPU/GPU to the right side where the Joycon holder is. Heat transfer to the front of the device achieved more easily than to the right side where the joycon gets attached."
Minimum temps - 21.2°C
Average temps - 21.2°C
Max temps - 35.0°C
"Undocked while being connected to a charger. The game looked really good in handheld mode (forgot if it was mirrored to the screen in front of me)."
In the images you can clearly see the right side of the Switch generates the most heat. This is because the Switch's 4310mAh battery is housed on the right side of the device, as revealed by the recent teardowns.
It's also worth mentioning that the Nintendo Switch will almost assuredly run hotter when docked as the GPU and CPU are fully unlocked to deliver up to native 1080p 60FPS performance.
While taken on-the-go the Switch switches its graphics and processing performance to a downclocked mobile mode to preserve battery life and help mitigate heat.
It'd be interesting to see just how hot the Switch gets when its docked while playing Zelda: Breath of the Wild, but we'll have to wait a bit before that kind of info comes out.
The Nintendo Switch will release on March 3, 2017 for $299. Check below for a massive catalog of everything we know about the Switch so far.
Everything we know about the Nintendo Switch:
- Nintendo Switch supports wireless Bluetooth headsets
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild has $20 season pass
- Nintendo Switch uses 20nm Maxwell Tegra SoC
- Nintendo Switch easy for devs, light years past Wii U
- Hitman dev may be working on new IP for Nintendo Switch
- Nintendo Switch could get Wii U game remasters
- 3DS supported alongside Switch 'for the time being'
- Devs can 'easily' port PC games to the Nintendo Switch
- Nintendo Switch JoyCons have 525mAh lithium ion battery
- Nintendo Switch is the gamer's dream, says Hideo Kojima
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild is about doing things your way
- Nintendo Switch has over 100 games in development
- Nintendo Switch paid online service only costs $26 a year
- Nintendo Switch appeals to Japanese smartphone gamers
- New Zelda is based on three words 'climb, live, protect'
- EA: Nintendo listening to third-party Switch game devs
- First footage of Nintendo Switch's touchscreen in action
- Nintendo Switch games lineup: a visual guide
- Nintendo Switch replaces Wii U on Nintendo homesite
- Nintendo Switch battery life analysis
- Resident Evil 7 isn't coming to Nintendo Switch
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild's Hyrule is bigger than Skyrim
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild has an awesome physics engine
- Switch's 4310mAh battery takes 3 hours to fully recharge
- Could the Nintendo Switch's hit full potential and boost CPU/GPU power via NVIDIA's cloud servers
- Nintendo Switch will have 'steady pacing of content'
- Switch is all about 'playing games anywhere with anyone'
- Nintendo Switch will have 'steady pacing of content'
- Putting Nintendo Switch launch games into perspective
- Stock Nintendo Switch JoyConGrip won't recharge JoyCons
- The new Zelda game takes up nearly half Switch's storage
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild runs at 900p 30FPS docked, 720p 30FPS undocked
- Nintendo Switch supports 2TB Micro SDXC cards
- Nintendo Switch online chat requires smartphone app
- Here's why Nintendo Switch doesn't come with any games
- Nintendo will soon charging gamers to play online multiplayer via subscription service
- Nintendo Switch UI revealed, let's take a closer look
- Nintendo Switch touchscreen has haptic feedback tech
- Nintendo stock drops after Switch unveil event
- Mario Kart 8 Deluxe on Switch runs at 1080p when docked
- Nintendo Switch hardware specs revealed
- Nintendo Switch costs $299, coming March 3
- Nintendo Switch battery life is 2.5 hours to 6 hours
- New Mario: Odyssey game won't be Nintendo Switch launch title
- Zelda: Breath of the Wild is Switch launch game
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