We have seen so many new handhelds hit the market recently, all moving towards having larger screens, bigger and better processors and a better form factor.
However, some of the newer handhelds being released recently have been aimed at those gamers wanting something that is ultra portable whilst at the same time still powerful enough to play your retro gaming classics.
So, the handheld I’m going to be looking at today, which was kindly sent to me by GoGameGeek, is the Miyoo Mini, a handheld that, in my opinion, is probably one of the best portable handhelds released so far.
I recently reviewed the FunKey S, which has been a great success, and I really liked it, though I found the screen a tad too small for my liking. But the Miyoo Mini is certainly the next step up, both in processor, image size and quality, and overall performance and build quality.
For anyone who follows my website and reviews, they will know by now that when I test these handhelds, I always do so as they come out of the box. I don’t change the operating system, but I will usually update the stock firmware if there is an update available. So, when I review something, I’m looking at how easy and practical it is for anyone without any technical know-how and who just want to play the games out of the box.
The Miyoo Mini really is a pick up and play gaming device. It’s so simple to understand from the moment you switch it on that you will be gaming within seconds. I wish all manufacturers would design a handheld as easy as this to play.
This is the first time I had heard of Miyoo, even though quite a few years ago they had released the Bittboy Pocket Go. Back in 2018 it was a popular handheld and helped the emulation scene with an affordable price point for retro gaming.
The Miyoo Mini itself is small enough to fit perfectly in your hand and is roughly the same size as a pack of Benson & Hedges (cigarettes), making it very pocket friendly.
The face features an excellent, bright 2.8” IPS display with a resolution of 640 x 480. Image quality is superb for such a small handheld, almost HD in quality, and I was extremely impressed. As it is a 4:3 aspect ratio, retro gaming on this fantastic handheld is even better, putting many similar devices to shame.
Below the screen you will find the D-pad, which really is a pleasure to use and is perfectly sized. Fighting games work great, as so did every game I played. I really can’t say enough about how well everything has been put together in order for the gaming experience to just ‘work’.
Next to the D-pad, you will find four glossy action buttons, which again, just sit perfectly with a nice height to them, and similar to the D-pad, they feature a rubber membrane that gives it a nice bounce when pressed. The version GoGameGeek sent me had a grey shell, which really gave it a true retro look. You will also find the Start/Select buttons next to the speaker grill, which, whilst not fantastic, sounds okay and is adequate. There is also a white variant with SNES colored buttons.
Along the sides of the Miyoo, you will find a micro SD slot, of which GoGameGeek supplied me with the 128GB version with thousands of games included. There is also a USB-C charging port, a headphone jack located at the bottom, volume wheel and an on/off button with LED battery indicators.
On the back you will find four small, slightly flared and slanted shoulder buttons, which feel nice when pressed. Though those people with big hands may struggle to position the Mini comfortably when using them, but overall, they work well.
Below the buttons you will find the battery pack, which can easily be opened to replace the battery. It reminded me so much of the old Game Boy DMG from 1989.
Overall, I love the way the handheld looks and feels. Whilst it’s lightweight, it doesn’t feel cheap. It’s very easy to fit in your pocket due to its small size, but it’s also big enough to be comfortable when playing. And the screen for such a small handheld is excellent.
So, if we look at the specs of the Miyoo Mini:
- 2.8″ IPS Display (640 x 480)
- 1.2GHZ Dual Core SSD202D CPU
- “2D Graphics Accelerator” GPU
- 128MB RAM
- 1900MAH Removable Battery (3 – 4 Hours)
- USB-C Charging
The Mini features a 1.2ghz dual core processor, 128MB of RAM and a 1,900mah battery. Now, this might not sound very good, especially when we are seeing much more powerful handhelds; however, this processor surprisingly allows it to power some of the larger PS1 games, which I was totally not expecting!!
Once turned on, you are greeted with one of the easiest OSs I’ve seen on any handheld. I can honestly say, for a pick up and go handheld, the Miyoo Mini must rank as one of the easiest to use. From accessing games, settings, saving game states, etc., the team behind the Mini have done a great job. If you do want to change the OS, you can use one called Onion, which I have used, and whilst it’s decent, I still love how simple the original one is.
The stock firmware comes with all the emulators you need for standalone play, or you can use the built-in RetroArch, which seems to play some of the emulators better. It’s nice to have that option, and everything is already set-up for you, so you literally can get into gaming within 30 secs of booting up. GoGameGeek sent me the 128GB version, which has around 30,000 games in it.
So, what platforms can the Miyoo Mini emulate, I hear you ask?!! Well, what I can say, out of the box, is this little handheld is a little emulation beast, and though not completely perfect for every platform out there, up to PS1 it plays great. And I genuinely smiled when playing PS1 games as not only do they look great on this screen, but something this small and with the specs, shouldn’t be able to play some of these games, but the Miyoo Mini does.
The Miyoo Mini in spec and OS terms is fairly basic. You can’t do a great deal to mess around with the emulators, with very few settings available. However, what you do get is a great portable handheld, which packs a punch way higher than it should. It’s well made and has a fantastic screen. In my opinion, anyone into portable retro gaming should have this mighty little handheld as part of their collection.
You can buy the Miyoo Mini from GoGameGeek by following the link HERE, and for my readers, I’ve arranged a 10% discount. And don’t forget: GoGameGeek offer free global shipping that is fully tracked.