Your smartphone’s screen probably features enough resolution that it’s impossible for the naked eye to make out individual pixels. But as YouTube’s Mr. Volt discovered, you can buy screens no larger than a postage stamp that pack even more pixels, and of course, the first thing you’d need to do with it is play Doom.
When we went hands-on (or fingers on) with the Thumby handheld a couple of months ago, we assumed that ultra-compact portable gaming meant settling for simple games (think Tetris, Snake, etc.) on monochromatic black and white screens that felt like we’d set the Wayback Machine to the original Atari era of gaming. But it apparently doesn’t have to be that way.
Mr. Volt, a self-identified display addict, stumbled across a 0.7-inch OLED microdisplay that could still muster HD resolutions at a full 1920x1080. That’s over two million pixels squeezed onto a screen you can easily cover with your thumb. At $275 it doesn’t come cheap, but who could resist such a novelty? Thankfully, not Mr. Volt, who ordered one, created a custom laser-cut wooden mount to hold it, and then connected it to a PC so they could play Doom Eternal on it.
Not only did the game display perfectly on the screen, but it also ran at a full 60Hz refresh rate without any visible screen tearing or other artifacts that may indicate it couldn’t keep up with the gaming action. But is standing 10-inches from a 0.7-inch screen really a practical way to play Doom Eternal? Probably not, and it definitely can’t be great for your eyes. So why does this screen even exist?
On the AliExpress website, it’s listed as being designed for head-mounted displays and while it might work great in one of those giant, obscenely expensive helmets that pilots wear, don’t expect something like this to facilitate a pair of smart glasses. Try to slap this on the inside of a pair of Ray-Bans and your eyes will have no chance of properly focusing on that screen. But maybe it’s a hacked-together smartwatch waiting to happen.