Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Displays Portables

Rise of the Super-High-Res Notebook Display 333

Posted by timothy
from the closer-closer dept.
MojoKid writes "Mobile device displays continue to evolve and along with the advancements in technology, resolution continues to scale higher, from Apple's Retina Display line to high resolution IPS and OLED display in various Android and Windows phone products. Notebooks are now also starting to follow the trend, driving very high resolution panels approaching 4K UltraHD even in 13-inch ultrabook form factors. Lenovo's Yoga 2 Pro, for example, is a three pound, .61-inch thick 13.3-inch ultrabook that sports a full QHD+ IPS display with a 3200X1800 native resolution. Samsung's ATIV 9 Plus also boast the same 3200X1800 13-inch panel, while other recent releases from ASUS and Toshiba are packing 2560X1440 displays as well. There's no question, machines like Lenovo's Yoga 2 Pro are really nice and offer a ton of screen real estate for the money but just how useful is a 3 or 4K display in a 13 to 15-inch design? Things can get pretty tight at these high resolutions and you'll end up turning screen magnification up in many cases so fonts are clear and things are legible. Granted, you can fit a lot more on your desktop but it raises the question, isn't 1080p enough?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Rise of the Super-High-Res Notebook Display

Comments Filter:
  • Work? (Score:5, Informative)

    by ebonum (830686) on Monday December 23, 2013 @06:15AM (#45765415)

    Perhaps the only reason you have a laptop is to watch YouTube. Some people do actual work on a laptop.

    If you use Word, Excel, Eclipse, etc. you don't get enough lines top to bottom. Even at 1080p. For many applications such as web browsing you have tons of unused white space on the left and/or right with 1080p, but you are constantly scrolling up and down.

    The more horizontal lines of resolution, the better. In an IDE with lots of tool bars and debug windows, etc. I have the up down space of a 1984 Mac for my code. It sucks.

  • DPI (Score:5, Informative)

    by Bert64 (520050) <bert@noSPam.slashdot.firenzee.com> on Monday December 23, 2013 @06:28AM (#45765475) Homepage

    A higher resolution should not translate to more things on screen, it should translate to greater levels of detail, assuming the UI is designed properly...
    Font sizes for instance are measures in points, where 72 points equals an inch. As such, a 72 point font should always be an inch high when displayed on screen, irrespective of how many pixels are required to render it.
    Or to put it another way, when you watch a standard def movie on an hdtv you don't get a small box in the top corner and a big empty black space around it, the movie fills up the whole screen as best it can and you just have less detail than if it was an hd feed.

    The extra level of detail may make it viable for smaller font sizes to still be readable...

  • by Derec01 (1668942) on Monday December 23, 2013 @06:30AM (#45765487)

    The summary makes the same ridiculous assumption I see repeatedly, which is that a desire for higher resolutions means that I want the text to remain tied to a number of pixels. Of course I don't want the text to get arbitrarily smaller; I just want it to get sharper. And I definitely notice. Every time I take a look at my boss's MacBook Pro I feel my eyes relax a bit compared to the jagged fonts on my Air.

    The real problem is that the OSes are terrible at rescaling to take advantage of the increased ppi. OSX is unfortunately bitmap based and many parts look pretty terrible if you turn the HiDef monitor option on. Windows is actually a little better with arbitrary % scaling, but many third party programs will still look awful.

  • They do...
    The DDC & EDID standards which are used to read monitor capabilities also supports reading the physical size. The problem is that windows ignores this information, and therefore some monitors don't bother to supply this information, or supply it incorrectly.

    http://scanline.ca/dpi/ [scanline.ca]
    https://lists.fedoraproject.org/pipermail/devel/2011-October/157671.html [fedoraproject.org]

  • by _xeno_ (155264) on Monday December 23, 2013 @06:42AM (#45765523) Homepage Journal

    OSX is unfortunately bitmap based and many parts look pretty terrible if you turn the HiDef monitor option on. Windows is actually a little better with arbitrary % scaling, but many third party programs will still look awful.

    Which is hilarious, because the OS X UI was originally based on Display PostScript, which evolved into Quartz2D, where one of the stated design goals is "resolution-independent rendering."

    Which, of course, it does not really do. I remember seeing a non-"retina" app running on a retina MacBook, apparently they "solve" this case by bilinearly scaling the app up. Genius!

  • by dutchwhizzman (817898) on Monday December 23, 2013 @07:01AM (#45765583)

    For prolonged use, you need to have a comfortable distance from your eyes to the screen. That is, in general, at least 60cm (2 feet). Anything closer than that will make the focusing muscles in your eyes tired. The amount of detail we humans can comfortably dissolve at that distance stops at somewhere around 200dpi and the difference between 110dpi and 200dpi isn't much any more.

    Given these hard biological facts, going anywhere over 110dpi for screens you look on longer than a few seconds at the time is mostly luxury and posing. Sure, you can put more information on a screen with more pixels, but you can't really use it effectively, since you will have to leer over to look at the screen more closely and your eyes and brain will have to work a lot harder to get that information processed if you don't. This does not apply to short term screens like your phone or tablet, but for laptops and desktops, just get a screen that has great colour rendition and enough resolution to look pretty at a comfortable distance.

  • Re:Laptops? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 23, 2013 @07:35AM (#45765677)

    no need for a citation you fucking moron. Take a walk around any business environment, and notice what's on the desks. Desktop PCs.

    The ONLY people in business env's with notebooks are those who need to be mobile or take work home with them. Those are usually senior staff. The minions use PCs.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 23, 2013 @08:33AM (#45765879)
    Actually Windows does use that information (At least 7 and forward) - and it uses it to set the system DPI level. One of my old laptops sets the DPI to 125% on its own at installation; another sets itself at 150%.
  • Because of entertainment sources, laptops and desktop monitors are all wide-screen 16x9... ...but that resolution ONLY works for entertainment video. Reading requires vertical height and narrow width (books are the shape they are for a reason), so the more horizontal space that is given at the loss of vertical, the less comfortable reading and writing (and *coding*) are because one can't fit enough vertical lines on the page to be able to speed-scan for context, and at other times someone doesn't bother to limit their readable space width (or it is a plain text file) and so the horizontal line goes well beyond the comfortable 10-12 word limit.

    In short, it just doesn't work when the medium is text. (Say what you will about the coming illiterate age at this point...)

    1080 is actually very uncomfortable for those of us who were coding in 1440x1280 4x3's prior to the HDMI standard locking us all down to 1080. I personally keep an external monitor rotated 90degrees in order to have a decent working space, separate from my "entertainment" and browsing space.

    Who else had a long vertical orientation to the monitor, knowing it was a better way to work? Xerox PARC.

  • by mikael_j (106439) on Monday December 23, 2013 @12:04PM (#45767149)

    I think you've got your years wrong. I too remember talk of OS X going completely resolution independent but OS X hadn't even been released in 1998.

    I remember seeing some examples of what UI scaling in OS X looked like back in the 10.5 (I think) days looked like when enabled (which it obviously wasn't in the actual release version of OS X). It was looking pretty good, a few minor glitches here and there but definitely promising. Sadly they abandoned this approach in favor of the bitmap-based solution they've got now (though it works surprisingly well, if you had told me in the mid 90s that by 2013 we'd be up- and down-scaling desktop-size bitmaps in realtime with no visible UI lag I would've thought you were full of shit).

  • Re:16:10 (Score:4, Informative)

    by Solandri (704621) on Monday December 23, 2013 @01:27PM (#45767789)

    I really can't understand why PC manufacturers are shunning people asking for 16:10 displays.

    It's pretty obvious to me. The vast majority of people are content consumers. The vast majority of people buy PC laptops. Most video is now 16:9, so a 16:9 laptop display makes sense.

    A significant chunk of Apple's customer-base are (artistic) content creators. If you're editing a 16:9 movie on a 16:9 screen, there's no room for additional graphical editing controls. In particular, if you're showing a 1920x1080 movie on a 1920x0180 display, the only way to add controls is to cover up part of the image, or to shrink the image down to smaller than a 1:1 pixel representation. Neither of those choices is acceptable when you're supposed to be reviewing the movie for graphical artifacts and defects. 16:10 with a thin row of extra pixels at the top of bottom is much more preferable. (Actually a second monitor is most preferable, but we're talking about laptop screens here.)

    16:10 is also a lot closer to the golden ratio (1.618) than 16:9 (1.778), so appeals to artistic types (who are frequently the only ones outside of mathematicians who know what the golden ratio is).

    Why not 4:3? The original draw of 16:10 was that you could display two full-size working apps side-by-side (16:10 becomes 2x 8:10, which is almost exactly the aspect ratio of 8.5x11 US letter-sized paper).

    In tablet space (dual-use display in landscape and portrait mode), I've been playing with a Nook tablet which comes in a 3:2 aspect ratio. I think I like it even better than 16:10. 16:10 or 16:9 plays movies well in landscape mode, but has broad black bars on the top and bottom in portrait mode when displaying documents. 4:3 displays documents well in portrait mode, but has broad black bars when showing movies in landscape. 3:2 has thin black bars in either orientation, and seems like the least compromise.

  • by jeffb (2.718) (1189693) on Monday December 23, 2013 @03:15PM (#45768667)

    The amount of detail we humans can comfortably dissolve at that distance stops at somewhere around 200dpi and the difference between 110dpi and 200dpi isn't much any more.

    Given these hard biological facts, going anywhere over 110dpi for screens you look on longer than a few seconds at the time is mostly luxury and posing.

    You aren't considering hyperacuity [wikipedia.org]. Remember, there's more to vision than a mosaic of photosensors. There's a monstrous amount of real-time image-processing going on in your eye and your brain. Some of that processing is able to extract data far below naively-calculated "physical limits" of resolution or signal/noise.

"Text processing has made it possible to right-justify any idea, even one which cannot be justified on any other grounds." -- J. Finnegan, USC.

Working...