OLED screen specifications, PWM usage?

Unlike seemingly everyone else in the world, I was gutted when I found out the fp5 had an OLED screen. Most OLED screens seem to use PWM, which causes me eye strain and nausea. I’m coming from an older iPhone with a small 4.7" LCD IPS screen and was hoping to have a larger screen.

However, there is still hope! Does anyone know the specs of the OLED screen yet? Does it use PWM or DC dimming? And if it does use PWM, what frequency is the PWM flicker rate (not the same as the refresh rate of the screen). PWM screens that flicker at higher than 1000hz are sometimes OK.

I’m guessing FP themselves won’t answer (though it’d be great if they did!), but if anyone has seen any news on this, please say!


Hello and welcome to the forum. I think your best bet is to contactsupport and ask them directly. I did the same with the FP4 when I was curious about the microphones (whether they are replaceable) and the presence of the notification LED. They had no problem answering these questions for me.


I guess “880 nits peak brightness, 2 min” isn’t of any relevance for your questions? From the Specifications (a bit tricky to find) at https://shop.fairphone.com/fairphone-5#section5 (scroll a bit down to the “See all specifications” button)

I found a “DC dimming” option in the FP5 display settings:

Found it looking up both the terms “PWM” and “DC” in the settings search. Only DC returned results (the one pictured plus a system app called “dcf”).


I guess the only way to be sure is for you to try it out. Once the FP5 is actually being shipped, there should be more opportunities to do so - for example at a community meetup

Otherwise you might get a good deal on a FP4 sale somewhere or 2nd hand. It’s still going to be supported for several years to come, after all.


OMG, DC dimming as an option is incredibly good news. I’ll need to check with the e/OS forums to make sure that option is in there too, but the fact its in the standard Android OS is an incredibly good sign. I’m really very grateful for you looking for this on your fp5, thank you.

Would you be willing to turn it on for a couple of hours and see if you can see any difference to the screen quality? (I’m looking for “its basically the same to my eyes” or “it seems a tiny bit noisier” kind of level, nothing deep.


It’s a test device loaned to me for our upcoming meetup, not my daily driver, so I’m not using in that long uninterruptedly. But I’ll try to keep it in mind and have a look once in while in the coming days. Is “a tiny bit noisier” a typical tendency with DC dimming or was it just a random example?

One instant observation: When I’m activating DC dimming and remain in the same place until it has settled in, the screen’s notably a bit darker.


Some earlier OLED screens (predominately from LG but also from other manufacturers) used DC dimming and suffered from noise and/or uneven illumination. That was a few years ago now, but I don’t know if that’s been resolved generally across the display manufacturing industry.

I ask really, to see if there’s any particular difference between the two modes on the fp5 directly. I’d imagine there might be a small difference but nothing to worry about (I’m a bit fussy about screens, heh)

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Hi again, I walked the landscape and forest just outside of town here today, taking a flood of photos with the FP5 (any other readers: I will need some time to go through those and find a reasonable way to show these sample photos, so please don’t expect me to post them too soon), thus having a lot of “screen on” time. I did not notice anything extraordinary about the display. Bear in mind I haven’t got much to compare the “DC dimming on” state with. I have never used an OLED screen before.

It vaguely seemed to me that when manually increasing brightness, there is a rather abrupt increase/“jump” of brightness when I move from approximately 60 to 70% (i.e. move the brightness control slider), it appears not linear. But I doubt there is a connection with the DC dimming state.


Thank you for the update. This is very good news and I am feeling a lot better about it as an option now! I appreciate you taking the time to test it, it was very kind of you to do so. I don’t think the incongruity in the gradient of brightness between 60% and 70% would cause an issue, at least, not for me.

I brought up the subject on the eOS forums too after your post about the DC dimming option being available, and the project maintainer has added it to the list of things to check - DC Dimming option for FP5

Provisionally the option is there, but they want to test to be sure everything is working for the next build.


The PWM dimming frequency of the Fairphone 5 display is well above 1 kHz and, as shown by other users, there is a “DC Dimming” option if PWM causes you any uncomfortable feeling :wink:


Hi Francesco,

Thanks for adding the detail about the PWN dimming frequency. Over 1khz is far higher than the 450-600hz that recent iPhones have been using, so this is excellent news! :slight_smile: Combined with a de-Googled privacy-conscious Android, it’s going to be great.



It seems the “DC Dimming” didnt made it into the release of TT3G.A.094?


I also saw that option on the demo device @urs brought to the Fairphone Aachen Community Meetup. Didn’t check the OS version on that device though. TT3G.A.094 is the release the FP5 ships with?

TT3G.A.094.20230822 is the latest build available with security patch lvl from August in contrast to the shipped version of July(?). I can confirm, before installing the update “DC Dimming” was available.

My FP5 is on build FP5.TT3B.A.083.20230728 and has DC Dimming.
I received it 15-09 and it hasn’t installed an update (as far as I noted). Checking for an update also says my system is already up to date.

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It’s nothing new that some updates aren’t rolled out to all users simultanously though. Maybe it’ll pop up over the next few days.
I would however be a bit surprised if DC dimming was removed (at least without a good reason) after @FrancescoSalvatore confirmed it is supported on the FP5.

Did DC dimming return in the end?

Not as a setting in the latest firmware.

Fairphone please add (back) this setting, I cannot use OLED otherwise.

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