Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 diary: why two displays are better than one

Many years after we forgot about the existence of dual-screen phones (on gg there is only one single review of a push-button phone with two screens, originally from 2008), we are back in the world of devices with two different displays. There is a huge technological gap between these two worlds, if only because the second screen of push-button clamshells has always been rather service and technologically lagging behind. In the case of the Galaxy Z Fold2, this is not the case – both of its screens, both internal and external, carry the most advanced technologies in themselves. Accordingly, now we will understand not only their technological capabilities, but also new methods of organizing work with a smartphone that can turn into a tablet.

Dual Screen Control in Settings Menu

Despite the fact that the Galaxy Z Fold2 has screens, both of its displays are configured at the same time – there is no separation into external and internal display in the settings. Any changes (up to the time the idle screen turns off) will affect both screens at once. Basically, most of the settings are exactly the same as any other Samsung smartphone with one version of the AMOLED screen. At this point, let me remind you that the external display is Super AMOLED with a diagonal of 6.23 “, a resolution of 2260×816 pixels and a Gorilla Victus protective coating. The internal display is Dynamic AMOLED 2X with a foldable UTG substrate, which I wrote about last time. It is durable and wear-resistant, moreover, Corning has not yet invented a protective coating that can bend, and it is less necessary for the internal screen, which is protected by the case when folded. The resolution of the internal screen is 2208×1768 pixels with a diagonal of 7.6 inches.

Like any other Samsung AMOLED, these screens have two main modes of operation – natural and rich colors. Understandably, by default they are saturated, which allow you to fully reveal the capabilities of the screens. For those who like to dig deeper with the pens, it is possible to turn on the blue filter (it is really overstated, as the colorimeter will show us later) or adjust the RGB color channels at your discretion. Natural color mode does not have this control – everything is presented “as is”. Like all new Samsung flagships, the Fold2 supports an adaptive screen refresh rate (internal only) up to 120 hertz. You cannot control this process manually – the automation itself chooses what the user needs at the moment – greater smoothness of movements or reduced energy consumption.

But there are settings that are unique to the Galaxy Z Fold2. A separate menu item allows you to enable applications that will continue to work on the external screen after closing the smartphone (and vice versa).

The section with screen scaling looks a little different than usual for those who need to improve visibility on the screen and increase the font. You can choose from two options for the application layout. In the first case, the screen will behave like a tablet (if the application can do it), trying to place more information on the “tablet” screen. In the second case, the screen behaves like a normal smartphone display and allows you to scale the picture.

The difference between the first and second options is not very big, I left the default mode, in which more information is placed on the screen. For example, for Facebook the difference is not great, but noticeable:

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As in the case with the first Galaxy Fold in the browser, it makes sense to switch to the desktop version, in this case the “tablet” screen is enough for comfortable viewing. In other applications, everything is individual: in some, everything is fine, and they allow you to effectively use a large screen (for example, Gallery or Google Photo. In others, like Nova Poshta or Privat24, everything looks like under a magnifying glass.

Here’s the difference between mobile and desktop browsers. The second version looks great, the first one is terrible.

In portrait orientation, the picture is similar:

If you enter the screen settings menu from an external display, everything will be exactly the same, except, of course, other proportions. If you try to change settings that only apply to the home screen, pop-up messages will appear.

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Screen Measurements: Super AMOLED as Super AMOLED

An excellent colorimeter device, which has been used by the editors for more than one year gg, allows you to objectively, and not by eye, evaluate the technical capabilities and calibration of displays. In order to independently learn to understand all these graphs, we have made a separate article with explanations. So, we have two displays: external and internal, each of which we tested in two modes of operation: with vivid and natural display of colors.

Test 1. External display in natural color mode

The color gamut of the screen in this mode is slightly larger than the sRGB color space in green, which looks brighter than we would like. The color temperature is steadily elevated, but sags slightly in dark tones, that is, the lighter areas go more strongly to the colder part of the spectrum. The color component graph shows the enhanced blue color common to all OLED screens.

Test 2. External display in vivid color mode

Rich color mode makes the display even stronger – blues and greens are even more out of gamut sRGB, the color temperature is even higher, and the blue component rises from 120% to 130%. As you can see, the situation with OLED screens is consistently repeating: users like bright colors, more saturated than in real life (all photos seem to be more saturated than they really are). And everyone who is able to see excessive blue by eye will be able to see it. For them, in fact, the setting is intended, including, if desired, a blue filter.

Test 3. Internal display in natural color mode

On the main display, the situation is generally repeated. The only difference is that the color gamut does not reach the sRGB color space in red, but also exceeds it, like the external display, in green. The color temperature does not jump so much in dark tones, and the brightness of blue exceeds the ideal indicator except for the dark part of the gradient, where it is almost normal.

Test 4. Internal display in rich color mode

Finally, the last test shows that the color gamut of the main display in saturated color mode exceeds the sRGB color gamut (especially in the blue and green parts of the spectrum), and the color temperature shows three different levels in dark, medium and light gradient tones, that is, light colors suffer images that appear slightly brighter than they should be. But the blue level is not increased as much as on the external display.

Personal impressions of screens

If the first Galaxy Fold had a smaller external screen and could not be fully used for its intended purpose, then the Galaxy Z Fold2 has its dimensions and an elongated diagonal just perfect for modern leaflet applications (social networks, instant messengers). In fact, this is a full-fledged self-sufficient display that can replace the regular screen of any other smartphone. Xx this allows you to literally use the device “on the go” without discomfort. Moreover – with some simple applications like New mail, Privat24 or smart kettle control (as the father of a small child, I regularly use such a kettle when I need to heat water to a strictly defined temperature), the external screen is even more convenient than the main one. It is perfect when, for example, you need to scan a barcode of a store loyalty card, you don’t even need to open the screen for this. By the way, that is why I brought all the applications of retail chains and gas stations that I use to the EDGE virtual panel – this is very convenient when your hands are busy and you need to quickly launch the application and scan the code.

The main screen is convenient for sedentary use cases. When you can safely open your smartphone and put it into tablet mode. Play a game, view / show a photo in full screen or open a website. In terms of visual sensations, both screens do not differ at all from the screens of flagship smartphone models, and even a demanding user is unlikely to find anything to complain about (and for such, I repeat, a blue filter is intended).

Three things to know about the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 displays

  • They are both full-fledged and high-tech, use AMOLED technologies and behave like similar AMOLED screens.
  • One section of the menu controls the settings of both screens at the same time, but some of the settings concern only the main screen.
  • You can independently choose applications that will continue to work on the second screen when you close / open your smartphone.

For those who want to know more

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