How I Turned iPhone 15 Into A Portable Gaming Console With Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor (Review)

iPhone is a competent gaming device. Over the past few years, the device has become so powerful that it can compete with gaming consoles of the not-so-distant past.

With Apple taking iPhone gaming seriously and the launch of fun console game titles like GTA San Andreas, Resident Evil 4, and more wouldn’t it be nice to play iPhone games on a larger display? That’s exactly what we wanted to achieve when we set out to create our very own iPhone 15 portable gaming console.

Creating this setup was both fun and easy thanks to the plug-and-play accessories that are readily available in the market. Apart from of course the iPhone, the star of the show was the Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor, which acted as a portable display for our gaming setup.

So what are the things that you need to create your very own iPhone 15 portable gaming console? Well here’s what you need.

  • An iPhone 15 series device (or an older iPhone + a Lightning to USB-C dongle)
  • Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor
  • Minix C1 Wireless USB-C to HDMI dongle
  • A power bank with USB-A and USB-C ports
  • A wireless gaming controller that is compatible with the iPhone

Before we talk about the setup and its performance let’s first discuss each of the accessories listed above in detail.

Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor

The Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor is a great portable monitor that comes in two variants. The Minix SF16 and Minix SF16T (with Touch Screen). The specific model we used in our portable gaming setup was the Minix SF16T, which worked tremendously for this purpose.

This is a 16.5-inch display that can be connected to any device that supports an external monitor. You can use the Minix SF16 with an iPhone, iPad, Mac, and more. It features two USB-C ports, 1 HDMI port, and 1 USB-A port along with a 3.5mm headphone jack. The monitor even features built-in speakers.

This display features a multi-touch display, which works great with macOS. You can use macOS multi-touch features with the Minix SF16T Portable Monitor and perform touch actions like tapping on the screen, scrolling up and down on a page or list, performing five-finger gestures to access the launchpad, and more.

A great thing about the Minix SF16 Portable Monitor is that it is very versatile. You can use it with any device and in any kind of setup. While we used it for our iPhone 15 portable gaming console setup, you can use it as an extended macOS display, a secondary monitor for your Windows or Linux computer, an iPad monitor, etc.

It also offers a single cable connectivity, allowing you to connect it to your MacBook using a single USB-C cable. In this sort of setup, you will get display output, touchscreen functionality, and power all with a single cable.

The Minix SF16 portable monitor packs some amazing specs. This includes a 16.5-inch IPS display, 1920×1200 resolution, 300 nits brightness, 60Hz refresh rate, touch screen, multi-touch support, 16.7 million colors/8-bit, 16:10 aspect ratio, and more.

Thanks to the top-notch specs you get a vivid and bright gaming experience that is far better than playing on your iPhone’s comparatively tiny screen.

In the box, you get all the necessary accessories including a 33W power brick with adapters for different regions, 2 USB-C cables, 1 HDMI cable, and a USB-A to USB-C cable.

What makes the Minix SF16 Portable Monitor the ideal candidate for our portable iPhone 15 gaming console setup are its features like 750g lightweight, adjustable stand that goes from -35 degrees to -10 degrees, amazing colors, and a wide viewing angle of 178 degrees.

Minix C1 Wireless USB-C to HDMI dongle

The next essential item that you need for this wireless gaming setup is the Minix C1 Wireless USB-C to HDMI dongle. This dongle allows you to mirror your iPhone’s screen wirelessly to the Minix SF 16 Series Portable Monitor.

The dongle comprises two components. A small USB-C transmitter that needs to be connected to the iPhone’s USB-C port. This works great on an iPhone 15 Series device, which comes with a USB-C port. If you have an older iPhone, then you will need a Lightning to USB-C dongle to use this wireless dongle.

The second component of the Minix C1 dongle is the USB-A to HDMI Receiver, that goes into the display’s HDMI port. You also need to provide the receiver with power, which can be done by plugging the USB-A side of the receiver into the power bank.

A power bank

A power bank is needed to provide power to the Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor and the Minix C1 dongle’s receiver.

You can use any power bank that is available to you, however, make sure the power bank has a USB-A port along with USB-C ports so you can provide power to the USB-A Receiver of the Minix C1 dongle.

A wireless game controller

This is not a mandatory requirement, as you can play all iPhone games using the touch controls. However, based on my experience I can tell you that gaming becomes a lot more fun when you use an iPhone-compatible gaming controller with your iPhone 15 portable gaming console setup.

You can buy one of the iPhone-compatible wireless game controllers or you can use a Xbox or PlayStation game controller if you already own one of these gaming consoles.

How to create your iPhone 15 portable gaming console-setup

Now that you have gathered all the necessary components to make your iPhone 15 portable gaming console setup it is time to put all the pieces together and start playing! Follow the step-by-step guide below to create your own iPhone 15 portable gaming console setup.

Step 1. Take your Minix SF16 Series Portable monitor and connect it to the power bank using a USB-C or USB-A cable.

Step 2. Now take the Minix C1 Wireless USB-C to HDMI dongle and connect the transmitter to the USB-C port of your iPhone 15.

Step 3. Next, take the Minix C1 dongle’s receiver and plug the HDMI side to the Minix SF16 display and the USB-A side to your power bank.

Step 4. Connect your wireless game controller to your iPhone by enabling its discovery mode and going to Settings -> Bluetooth.

Step 5. Launch your favorite game and start playing!

My experience with the iPhone 15 portable gaming console-setup

After creating this iPhone 15 portable gaming console setup I have been playing games on it for the past two weeks. During this time I started playing the GTA San Andreas game on my iPhone. This is one of my favorite games from my childhood. Being able to enjoy this game by playing it on my iPhone 15 Pro Max and streaming it on the large Minix SF16 Series Portable Monitor seems amazing.

The last time I played this game was on a PlayStation so having it on my iPhone, which runs the game like a champ with console-level graphics is unbelievable. The overall performance of the game on the iPhone, and screen mirroring on the portable display works flawlessly. Not to mention the Minix C1 USB-C to HDMI dongle, that wirelessly mirrors the game smoothly without any lag or delay.

Other controller-friendly games like the Jetpack Joyride were also fun to play. I also enjoyed playing Doodle Jump and Tiny Wings, both of which need to be played using the touch controls. You can watch the complete gameplay of these games in the video above.

The Xbox game controller made things even better as the whole experience of playing GTA on the larger screen leveled up with this console game controller. There were moments when I forgot that I was enjoying the GTA San Andreas game on a portable monitor while wirelessly streaming it from my iPhone. The whole gaming setup was mind-blowing, to say the least. A great benefit of using a game controller is that not only does it provide a far superior gaming experience thanks to the actual physical buttons as opposed to touch controls, but I could also charge my iPhone at the same time using a MagSafe charger.

The power bank also played a very important role in making this whole gaming setup truly portable. The power bank that I used had a 10,000mAh battery and it was able to run the screen and power the C1 dongle for many hours without breaking a sweat.

Other uses

While our main goal with this setup was to create a portable gaming console powered by iPhone 15, this setup has many other uses as well. You can take advantage of this setup to enjoy your favorite YouTube videos and Netflix shows with your friends. This makes it a perfect traveling companion as you can enjoy games and movies while traveling.

Another great use of this setup is for those who are looking for a portable presentation setup. You can use this setup to deliver presentations from your iPhone and take advantage of Minix SF16’s large display to present well. Web browsing and book reading also become great when done with this setup. You can access books on your iPhone.

Pricing and availability

The Minix SF16T (Touch Edition) is available for $249 (Amazon) while the Minix SF16 (Non-Touch Edition) is for $199.

You can purchase the Minix C1 USB-C to HDMI Wireless Display Dongle (Amazon) for $69.90 from the official website.

If you don’t own one already, you can check out some great power banks for iPhone 15. Similarly, iPhone 15-compatible game controllers are available.

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