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June 22, 2012 11:47 am

Nintendo announces the Nintendo 3DS XL, bigger screens, better battery

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So the rumours were true after all!

There is a new Nintendo 3DS model in town and its the Nintendo 3DS LL (or XL as we know it). The system as the name suggests is a bigger version of the Nintendo 3DS with new bigger screens and better battery life.

The system will come with a new 4.88″ screen, the normal Nintendo 3DS is 3.53″. The bottom screen of course is bigger too at 4.18″ instead of 3.02″ screen of before. The top screen now comes with a 90% bigger viewing area.

Battery life too is much better at 6-10 hours, more than double that of the smaller model but only for DS games. 3DS games still get a slight increase with an estimated running time of 3.5-6 hours. Unfortunately, there is no second Circle Pad on this model as previously speculated.

Some new things will be included in the box, the first won’t be an AC adapter. Nintendo says they’re removing it to keep costs down. However it does use the same adapter that the DSi and 3DS use. There is now also a 4GB SD card included in the box.

The system is out on July 28th and comes in three, two toned colours which are White, Red x Black and Silver x Black and will cost 18,900 yen (about $234 AUD).

Anyone for a larger 3DS then?

Update: American and European release dates

United States $199.99 on August 19th, same date as New Super Mario Bros. 2.

European: Opening Pricing, July 28th in Europe, available in Blue, Red and Silver.


About the Author

Daniel Vuckovic
The Owner and Creator of this fair website. I also do news, reviews, programming, art and social media here. It is named after me after all. In my spare time I also contribute for Kotaku AU and have contributed many other places.




11 Comments


  1. 6-10 hours?! An upgrade may not be out of the question….


  2. OrionPax

    I’m not a fan of the rounded edges. But I can imagine how awesome it’ll be having a large 3d screen


  3. Oh wait, it’s only 3.5-6 hours for 3DS games. 6-10 hours for DS games.


  4. Ross Fitzpatrick

    I dont like how it looks but better battery is good, would have hoped for another circle pad and improved camera functions too.
    My main concern is how it will distort the image like the dsiXL did to normal ds games. grave concern.


  5. Friend

    Suddenly not regretting avoiding the 3DS, I was tempted to pick up one this week from the kmart sale but I’ll probably get this one for sure when it’s released.


  6. DrW@dsy

    Since there’s no second circle pad (which doesn’t surprise me sine about 6 games use it) is it safe to assume that there’ll be a new Circle Pad Pro to fit this system? If so I might be upgrading…


  7. MrDeflok

    Anyone know if the bigger screens make the games look… jagged? I heard this was an issue with the DS XL?


  8. Joh

    You know what, there’s no second circle pad, the screen resolution is still the same even if they are making the screen bigger, and the design is TERRIBLE. I think I would actually buy an original 3DS over this. Stupid nintendo.


  9. WillWill56

    Work done: 0

    This reminds me of how Apple manages to sell the same hardware over and over again. Rush the release of a product, then fix infamous problems with the hardware by releasing a new version of the product without actually adding anything significant, and then suddenly there’s an ‘unexplained’ increase in sales, because everyone is willing to pay to get rid of the little annoyances with the original design.

    Sure, everyone wants the start button to be a button and not a sticker, and a bigger screen would help the immersive factor for 3DS games, but I don’t want to completely re-buy my handheld just for these tiny little upgrades and “physical bug-fixes”. DS to DSi was a big improvement, a complete redesign and upgrade. DSi to DSi XL was a nice idea, since the DS/DSi was aimed at casual gamers in the first place and it helped those with poor eyesight. 3DS to 3DS XL is just confusing, the 3DS seems to be aimed more at gamers, and they won’t benefit from a screen size increase alone.

    My phone is thinner, smaller, lighter, more powerful, and has a bigger screen than the 3DS, and it has already been superseded by larger and more powerful versions multiple times in the last few years, so why is it so hard for Nintendo to add some raw power to the new handheld revision at the same time as fixing problems in the original design?

    Sure, this would delay the release by about a year, maybe more, but I prefer the Nintendo that spends the extra time making a complete new console, rather than the Nintendo that releases “hardware updates” just like software updates, except that customers have to foot the bill if they want these “updates”, as opposed to software updates, which can be a free download once you buy the first version of the software.

    Unless Nintendo is going to work with a retailer to offer this new model for $40 or less after trade-in of an original 3DS, there is little reason for anyone to buy this new version if they already have the original, unless you think a 4.88 inch LCD is worth $200. There’s no problem with this version for newcomers (read: latecomers) to the 3DS though.

    Oh, and Nintendo should give some more games to the 3DS ambassadors for this. And maybe to everyone that owns an original 3DS with horrible design flaws that will have to put up with any of their friends who decide to buy the new version and show it off.


  10. Dash135

    I think this will be more of a different option for 3DS buyers than a new, better system. I think Nintendo are actually being clever here, doing the same thing they did with the DSi XL. In my mind, that was more of a variation than an improvement, and was willing to give people the choice of a small screen and small package, or big screen or big package. Personally I think I would prefer my 3DS to be more portable than to have bigger screens, especially mid generation, and no plain black is also a problem to me, as none of the other colours appeal to me much.
    I think the design is good, although I get some of the complaints about it. I hate the circular sound holes (is that what they’re called?) and I think they probably should’ve included a second circle pad while they had the chance, although the exclusion affirms my belief that it’s a variation rather than an improvement.
    I prefer the matte look, especially on the top screen with the 3D slider, but the design as a whole lacks soul and looks a bit too rounded and sleek (yes you can have too much of a good thing). I think the bottom right hand side screams out for a second circle pad, but again I can understand why it wasn’t the time. It’s also interesting that it will cost the same as a 3DS now, again as it’s more of a variation of the original 3DS, but they’ve done well to keep the price down. It doesn’t include the cradle though, and I use that heaps, so that’s another reason for me not to get it.
    It’s difficult to make a great new piece of hardware mid gen, as no big changes can be made (the same pixel amount and hardware capabilities as the last console have to be kept, which is restricting), so I think this new 3DS isn’t going to be great in everyone’s eyes as everyone would want a better resolution with the big screen. It’s frustrating, as it won’t be a truly great new screen, or a great new revision, as everything has to be the same to retain compatibility. I won’t be getting this (I’m happy with my 3DS now) but I’m hoping that the next generation of handhelds (in a few years) thinks ahead more, and has all the things they tried to insert into this variation of the 3DS. I hope this does well, and expands the 3DS’ audience, but in any case the original 3DS is selling well now anyway, so I’m sure it’ll be all right.
    Maybe people who were waiting for the revision will finally get a 3DS XL now :D


  11. Joel

    Is there going to be a Zelda version? If not, it will be a downgrade, despite the improvements.



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