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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Consumer Hardware & Components > 'Retina' 24 inch LCDs out there?

'Retina' 24 inch LCDs out there?
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Sep 29, 2013, 07:02 AM
 
Hey everyone...

my dad looks at buying a new Mac Pro when it's released. He wanted a 24 inch screen to go with, nothing fancy. However, he would love to get a retina display. Are there any such screens on the market yet? Apparently, OS X 10.8 and 10.9 support it entirely, and many applications appear to support it, as Apple released it's first Mac with retina screen over a year ago. Do you have a link? Pricing? Will it be available soon? Any information?

Thanks,
PeterParker
     
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Sep 29, 2013, 04:18 PM
 
I've never heard of a 24" Retina display. But I would recommend a 27" 2560 x 1440 display, it's like the iMac 27" and to me it looks as good as my iPad/Phone's Retina. Monoprice makes a model that sells on Amazon, so does Nixeus, direct from them. If your Dad likes the 24" he likes space, the 27" opens things up considerably.
     
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Sep 29, 2013, 04:38 PM
 
There are retina-resolution displays of that size (used in medical and scientific settings). IIRC, the cheaper black-and-white ones start around $10,000 or so.
     
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Sep 29, 2013, 05:53 PM
 
4K will probably be the ~24" "Retina" standard... right now 4K is only down to about 32" displays, they run a couple grand.

2560x1440 aka 1440p at 27" is a close but value option right now - the Korean displays have brought the price down to the mid hundreds.
     
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Sep 30, 2013, 01:58 AM
 
I like 4K as much as the next guy, perhaps more, but I still think you need too much iron to make that work smoothly. I think it'll be a generation or two in the card department before you can do it without bleeding edge hardware and the attendant heat.
     
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Sep 30, 2013, 03:03 PM
 
4K takes a lot of horsepower for gaming, particularly since the current rage is 3 display setups, but not for desktop use. Even Intel integrated graphics support 4K and the experience is fine outside of games (window manager compositing, playing video, etc).
     
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Sep 30, 2013, 03:08 PM
 
I heard the problem with Intel integrated is running 4K the thing is pinned at max use the whole time.

Maxing out your card to run the finder is (of course) very bad all around.
     
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Sep 30, 2013, 05:15 PM
 
I'm skeptical of what you heard.

A 13" RMBP and 27" Tbolt display about as many pixels as a 4K display - I have no problems with finder, any non-game app, or video playback on them. 3D games have to run at reduced resolution.
     
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Sep 30, 2013, 11:35 PM
 
The point wasn't the card couldn't do it, the point was it made the GC work hard.

The impression I got was that setup means your fan goes full blast. That shouldn't happen with non-strenuous use like the finder if you want to consider your GC to have parity with your screen(s).
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 12:52 PM
 
Retina is an Apple proprietary technology, and one of the driving features of their products. It is very unlikely they would give this advantage to any other company to sell at a cheap price, or built to undercut Apple's own products.
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 12:54 PM
 
There is nothing proprietary about high-resolution displays.
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 01:01 PM
 
Thanks for making that point, I stand corrected. What I meant to say is that you will not likely find:
A third party display maker, selling a high resolution display that will have the name "Retina" legally attached to it.
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 01:23 PM
 
Of course not.

But that's completely irrelevant, though, isn't it?
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 02:57 PM
 
I'm pretty sure Apple wants consumers to call all HD displays "retina", just like Kleenex wants you to call all tissues "Kleenex".
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 03:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I'm pretty sure Apple wants consumers to call all HD displays "retina", just like Kleenex wants you to call all tissues "Kleenex".
Are you sure ?

I don't know if Apple got a trademark for "Retina".
If they have, things get complicated if it turns into a generic word like Kleenex.

ThOse companies have to be very vigilant to not lose their trademark due to generic use. That can be a big headache.

-t
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 04:31 PM
 
I'm just stating in response to the OP wanting to buy a no-frills Retina display. Sure, maybe when he said Retina, he meant hi-resolution, and not Apple Retina, just like someone ordering a drink and asking for a Coke, when they only have Pepsi.
I suppose that distinction should only come up when a fresh-faced recruit asks the same question, but I don't like to have any misunderstandings in these discussions. Since it also looks like the OP is not responding to this thread, I would also guess, too that it does not matter at this point.
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 05:37 PM
 
I think you're wrong. He is not merely talking about getting a non-low-res 24" screen.

The question is very specific about a type of screen where he's not even sure it exists.
That doesn't sound like he just wants a recommendation for a standard "high-def" 24" screen.

-t
     
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Oct 1, 2013, 05:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
Are you sure ?

I don't know if Apple got a trademark for "Retina".
If they have, things get complicated if it turns into a generic word like Kleenex.

ThOse companies have to be very vigilant to not lose their trademark due to generic use. That can be a big headache.

-t
Not a bad point, but Apple is very mindshare focused.
     
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Oct 7, 2013, 08:44 PM
 
I think you underestimate how expensive a physically large, high-DPI display would be.

This editorial is pretty accurate, I think. It's cheaper to make high-DPI mobile displays in bulk, and the demand for high-DPI desktop displays isn't all that...high. There's also this article, which explains that because the normal desktop display view distance is so much greater than a laptop or mobile device, the usefulness of an ultra high-DPI resolution (like 300+ PPI) is significantly diminished.

It's the same reason behind why a 50" TV at 1920x1080 looks so good. You're generally sitting far enough away from it that the image appears very sharp.
     
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Oct 8, 2013, 10:06 AM
 
I have this little factoid memorized and it might be worth repeating:

The 720 resolution for TV was identified as the resolution at which participants with 20/20 vision could no longer see an improvement if they sat at a distance equal to 4 times the height of the display. In the same way, 1080 was chosen for a distance of 3 times the height of the display, and math gives us the number for 1440 is twice the height of the display, and that for 2160 is 1.5 times the height (2160 is the height of a "4K UHD" display). If we're talking about 16:9 widescreen displays, the height of the display is almost exact half of the diagonal measurement. Combine all of this and you get that the minimum viewing distance for a 1440 line display is equal to the stated diagonal measurement, and for a 4K display it is three quarters of the diagonal measurement.

Note that desktop work is not TV watching, so the numbers might not quite work for working with text, but they're a decent rule of thumb.
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Oct 8, 2013, 02:24 PM
 
On the other side of the scale, my understanding is it doesn't matter how much you shove your face to the screen, you're not capable of resolving all the data in a 2160p image without a screen larger than 10' diagonal.

The backstory to this figure involved a new 2160p screening room at a post-production facility. All the editors started to book out the room because there were details they were missing on the screens in the edit bays (I don't recall exactly, but I want to say they were 6' screens). The guy who built the original room was called to build a bunch more, and ended up doing experiments with the editors to come up with the 10' minimum.
     
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Oct 9, 2013, 03:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
On the other side of the scale, my understanding is it doesn't matter how much you shove your face to the screen, you're not capable of resolving all the data in a 2160p image without a screen larger than 10' diagonal.
That is not even close to being true.

The backstory to this figure involved a new 2160p screening room at a post-production facility. All the editors started to book out the room because there were details they were missing on the screens in the edit bays (I don't recall exactly, but I want to say they were 6' screens). The guy who built the original room was called to build a bunch more, and ended up doing experiments with the editors to come up with the 10' minimum.
It sounds like you totally misunderstood their experiment.

Resolvable screen detail depends mainly on two factors: Seating distance and screen size.

Nobody watches a big screen movie from 3 feet from the screen. At that distance, any minor blemish is instantly obvious on a 10' screen, but it's already painful to watch anyway because you'd be straining your neck in all directions to see the entire screen.

I personally want a Retina-like iMac 24" with either a 200 ppi resolution, or else a much higher resolution that I can decrease to effectively function like 200 ppi. One of the benefits of Retina is that you can actually use non-native screen resolutions and it still looks decent.
     
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Oct 10, 2013, 09:58 PM
 
Are you making an argument? You seem only to be saying I'm wrong. Not much anyone can do with that.

I'm saying a bunch of editors found 6' to be too small when they had 10' available. To the extent they started refusing to use the 6'. The argument is 10' is the minimum. The evidence is the behavior of the editors.

AFAICT your argument is "you're wrong" and the evidence is still in your head.
     
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Oct 11, 2013, 03:46 AM
 
Hello friends,

trying to sort out the mess... In my opinion, it's rather your emotional and philosophical confusion about retina displays - or those with comparable designations - that makes you believe they are too hard to get to market, or simply an overkill of too high resolutions as the viewing distance is so much larger. I'll try to explain...

In my opinion, the whole retina revolution is unfonished as long as desktop computers don't get them - it would change everything from games to video, from graphics to all-day stuff like email and surfing the web. The argument goes that the diffence would be not noticeable as the displays are farther away. However, none of you has ever seen a desktop PC running with such a display, in addition, I must admit I see rather clearly the edges and pixels of written text on an iMac display, and often enough, you see details in using the Mac that would simply have looked different on a retina iPad or MacBook. So, if you don't increase resolution by as much as you did for retina with tablets and smartphones, you would probably land somewhere in between, that is, 150 px per inch or so, instead of 200 or many more. Question: Everyone used to think multi-touch displays were unaffordable when the market didn't yet ask for it, and everyone thought retina displays like on the iPad 3 were unaffordable until Apple started to offer it at iPad 2's price. So, does it really make sense to increase the resolution only a bit, when some people do like to pull the screen a bit closer, or simply need to for professional reasons? And woulnd't that be the breaking point when all desktops and notebooks in the world would get these displays?

As for requiring too much speed, well... In fact, an iPad is much slower than any iMac from many years or so, I think they say, still it pushes many more pixels on the display. I always thought today's computers would have lots of unused graphics and processing speed lying aroud unused, except for the cheapest without separate graphics card, but they may simply need to change in the future.

18 months ago, there were no retina- (or retina-like) tablets in the world, now, it's a total standard except for very few. Hmm.

Pete
     
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Oct 11, 2013, 10:50 AM
 
As far as your dad's buying decision is concerned - unless he wants to wait a few more years, he can't have a big retina display at a reasonable price anytime soon.

-t
     
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Oct 12, 2013, 03:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
As far as your dad's buying decision is concerned - unless he wants to wait a few more years, he can't have a big retina display at a reasonable price anytime soon.

-t
He will have it in 12 months and with pricing similar to most we are used to with normal displays.
     
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Oct 12, 2013, 03:47 AM
 
If you consider 3000 or 4000€ "similar to most we are used to with normal displays" — the 30" Cinema Display cost over 3800€ the first few years it was on the market — you may be right.
     
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Oct 12, 2013, 11:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by PeterParker View Post
He will have it in 12 months and with pricing similar to most we are used to with normal displays.
LOL. Right. Good luck.

-t
     
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Oct 13, 2013, 05:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by PeterParker View Post
Hello friends,

trying to sort out the mess... In my opinion, it's rather your emotional and philosophical confusion about retina displays - or those with comparable designations - that makes you believe they are too hard to get to market, or simply an overkill of too high resolutions as the viewing distance is so much larger. I'll try to explain...

In my opinion, the whole retina revolution is unfonished as long as desktop computers don't get them - it would change everything from games to video, from graphics to all-day stuff like email and surfing the web. The argument goes that the diffence would be not noticeable as the displays are farther away. However, none of you has ever seen a desktop PC running with such a display, in addition, I must admit I see rather clearly the edges and pixels of written text on an iMac display, and often enough, you see details in using the Mac that would simply have looked different on a retina iPad or MacBook. So, if you don't increase resolution by as much as you did for retina with tablets and smartphones, you would probably land somewhere in between, that is, 150 px per inch or so, instead of 200 or many more. Question: Everyone used to think multi-touch displays were unaffordable when the market didn't yet ask for it, and everyone thought retina displays like on the iPad 3 were unaffordable until Apple started to offer it at iPad 2's price. So, does it really make sense to increase the resolution only a bit, when some people do like to pull the screen a bit closer, or simply need to for professional reasons? And woulnd't that be the breaking point when all desktops and notebooks in the world would get these displays?

As for requiring too much speed, well... In fact, an iPad is much slower than any iMac from many years or so, I think they say, still it pushes many more pixels on the display. I always thought today's computers would have lots of unused graphics and processing speed lying aroud unused, except for the cheapest without separate graphics card, but they may simply need to change in the future.

18 months ago, there were no retina- (or retina-like) tablets in the world, now, it's a total standard except for very few. Hmm.

Pete
I had a really nice response to this post, and my damn browser crashed and I lost it.

Suffice it to say:

Those of us in here talking about why ultra high PPI desktop displays don't exist yet aren't basing it on "emotion" or "philosophical confusion". We're basing it on science and the reality of the consumer market.

There have been ultra high PPI displays in the past. They were very expensive (IBM had a display in 2003 for $1800; Samsung had one in 2007 for $17,500; both displays were released long before Apple ever "invented" ultra high PPI displays) and it was clear the consumer market had zero interest in them.

Consumer video cards have only recently supported resolutions beyond full HD (1920x1080). Not only that, but web-friendly graphics are inherently lower resolution. High-resolution bitmap images (bitmap as in image type, not file format) are large and waste disk space and bandwidth.

The reason the Retina display on a 13' MBP looks so amazing to you is because the previous generation 13" MBP had a really shitty resolution. You can get multiple ultrabooks with full HD displays, and it looks fantastic. Not only that, but comparing a Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus with its 275ppi display - which is higher than the 13" MBP - set to 1920x1080 looks the same as a 13" display with a maximum resolution of the same.

Comparing the iPad's ability to use a Retina display with a real computer's ability to drive a 250ppi large desktop monitor (20" or larger) is ridiculous. The iPad is a single-device ecosystem where the OS and hardware are specifically designed to work together. It's the same reason why the xbox 360, which is now seven years old with a 500MHz GPU and 512MB RAM, is able to handle the hyper realistic graphics found in GTA V and all the newest sports games.

Nobody's saying that ultra high DPI displays aren't ever going to happen. We're just saying that the consumer market doesn't really need it. Consumers are largely moving away from desktop computing toward tablets, laptops, and hybrid devices that can serve both functions. In the enterprise world, you'd be amazed at how LITTLE most customers actually need out of their hardware - many times, people spend their entire day in the Microsoft Office suite and a web browser for things like SharePoint and intranet portals and web apps.

You might be right - maybe in Q4 2014, we'll see the first ultra high DPI desktop displays. They won't, however, be cheap.
     
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Oct 13, 2013, 10:11 PM
 
High-DPI displays do offer one usability improvement that matters to the average Joe, though — they allow you to arbitrarily scale the UI to any size you like, and it all still looks just as good. This matters a lot to, for example, seniors and people with poor eyesight — if you've ever tried to troubleshoot one of their computers, you'll know what I mean. The resolution is always set to something lower than the native, causing everything to look fuzzy and horrible, but otherwise they can't see anything.

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Oct 13, 2013, 10:42 PM
 
I'll agree with that - 1920x1080 on an Ativ Book 9 Plus looks just as sharp as native resolution.

That being said, I do think we're still a little ways away from affordable high DPI desktop monitors, especially given the fact that a lot of consumers don't even use desktop computers anymore. And no, I don't have empirical research to back that up. That's just based on my own observations in real life as well as what I've seen from a number of technology-oriented news sources.
     
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Oct 14, 2013, 08:41 AM
 
While it's true that it takes a lot of GPU power to run a massive amount of pixels, there are VERY powerful desktop GPUs out there - far more powerful than what you'd need. That can not be a reason why there are few (or no, depending on your definition) "retina" desktop displays on the market. The fact that HDMI is garbage is one possible explanation (while it technically supports 4K even before its 2.0 incarnation, it only does so at a laughable 30 Hz), but DisplayPort has been around for some time. No, I think that it is still hard to manufacture those ultramassive high-res displays at a decent yield.

The fact that MS has utterly dropped the ball on supporting higher ppis in the OS also doesn't help, obviously. Not much call for external desktop displays for Macs where the iMac is most of the market.
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Oct 18, 2013, 10:15 PM
 
Windows 8 and 8.1 on my Surface Pro do a pretty great job scaling on the display. Same with the 275ppi display on Samsung's Ativ Book 9 laptop.

Microsoft's own apps, as well as modern apps, look great. It's up to the third party publishers to make their apps scale, at this point.
     
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Oct 19, 2013, 05:26 PM
 
"Making the apps scale" means rewriting them from scratch and ditching all bitmapped graphics for vectors.
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Oct 29, 2013, 02:24 AM
 
     
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Oct 29, 2013, 01:54 PM
 
Not 24"
     
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Oct 29, 2013, 03:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
That is not even close to being true.


It sounds like you totally misunderstood their experiment.

Resolvable screen detail depends mainly on two factors: Seating distance and screen size.

Nobody watches a big screen movie from 3 feet from the screen. At that distance, any minor blemish is instantly obvious on a 10' screen, but it's already painful to watch anyway because you'd be straining your neck in all directions to see the entire screen.

I personally want a Retina-like iMac 24" with either a 200 ppi resolution, or else a much higher resolution that I can decrease to effectively function like 200 ppi. One of the benefits of Retina is that you can actually use non-native screen resolutions and it still looks decent.
Heard the same guy (Joe Kane) say the same thing again yesterday.

"You can't begin to see the detail in 2140p material without a screen larger than 10'. For that matter, you need at least 6' for 1080p."

You may disagree, but I didn't misunderstand.
     
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Oct 29, 2013, 04:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
"Making the apps scale" means rewriting them from scratch and ditching all bitmapped graphics for vectors.
I don't think this is necessarily the case. Google's managed to make Chrome scale fairly well, because it uses text more than graphics for the interface (menus, bookmarks, etc.). You shouldn't have to rewrite application functionality in order to simply use vectors for buttons instead of bitmaps (which, for the record, is how Windows 9x created the widgets in the top right corner of every window - those icons were a font, not bitmaps).

High-DPI displays aren't going anywhere. At some point, developers of popular applications aren't going to have much of a choice but to figure out how to make scalable UIs, much like how web designers have had to figure out how to create responsive web designs that can work on new, high-DPI mobile devices just as well as old standard-resolution devices.
     
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Oct 29, 2013, 06:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
I don't think this is necessarily the case. Google's managed to make Chrome scale fairly well, because it uses text more than graphics for the interface (menus, bookmarks, etc.). You shouldn't have to rewrite application functionality in order to simply use vectors for buttons instead of bitmaps (which, for the record, is how Windows 9x created the widgets in the top right corner of every window - those icons were a font, not bitmaps).
In MVC terminology, you have to rewrite the View but not the Controller (and obviously not the Model). I suspect that Chrome had this easier because they didn't use Windows APIs for much anyway, so the replacement was easy. HArdly a typical case.

(Also, I think you mean that the close-maximize-minimize icons are like an outline font. Fonts can be bitmapped - Postscript Type 3 fonts are - but most these days are outline fonts. For some reason window controls have often been outlined, all the way back to fairly early X-windows controls).

Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
High-DPI displays aren't going anywhere. At some point, developers of popular applications aren't going to have much of a choice but to figure out how to make scalable UIs, much like how web designers have had to figure out how to create responsive web designs that can work on new, high-DPI mobile devices just as well as old standard-resolution devices.
Apple tried that for about a decade before giving up and just pixel doubled - you can still see the attempts by hacking older versions of the OS. It's not that you can't make a completely vector-based UI, it's that it's harder and doesn't look as nice as a bitmapped UI. It took a loooooong time to get to the point where you could do pixel doubling and scaling as you like on integrated graphics in realtime, but we're there now, and graphics performance is the one area that keeps marching on, doubling every 24 months or whatever. I doubt anyone is going to back down now.
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Oct 29, 2013, 06:08 PM
 
True. On the other hand, just making multiple icons sizes available can alleviate the problem quite a bit. In Windows, you can change the base text size used for UI elements throughout the OS and in applications, so that's not a problem - menus and the like will resize automatically if the application uses WPF to build the UI. If it uses GTK, you might need to make some extra tweaks (found that out with InstantBird, for instance).

Just offering the option to use 32x32 or 48x48 icons instead of 16x16 would go a long way toward making apps high-DPI friendly.

And, again - high-DPI displays aren't going away. Apple tried the whole resolution-independent UI thing in an era when hardware didn't demand it and your average consumer didn't even know such capability existed. Now that we've got affordable, commodity laptops with 250+ PPI displays, technology is going to drive the shift toward application UIs that are, at the very least, high-DPI friendly (e.g. that second size option for toolbar buttons).
     
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Dec 2, 2013, 04:10 AM
 
     
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Dec 2, 2013, 05:23 AM
 
Interesting. 183 ppi is closer to the original iPhone than even the 15" Retina MBP, but it probably qualifies in a pinch. I'd really prefer a 22" display with that resolution though.
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Dec 2, 2013, 08:21 AM
 
Conspicuously absent: price !

-t
     
P
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Dec 2, 2013, 09:50 AM
 
And a delivery date...
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Mac Elite
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Dec 2, 2013, 10:05 AM
 
I think I have read that they have now been "announced" which means the information is listed on the regular website which means they are shipping within 6 months. I googled a while and I found a note that there is going to be a 32 inch vesion and a 24 inch version, the bigger one being around 3000 dollars, the smaller one arund 1500 dollars or less. It was also noted, they are everything but beauties.
( Last edited by PeterParker; Dec 2, 2013 at 10:32 AM. )
     
Mac Elite
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Dec 2, 2013, 02:24 PM
 
I like the new signature, btw.
     
Mac Elite
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Location: Montréal, Québec (Canada)
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Dec 2, 2013, 04:09 PM
 
New UltraHD Dell monitors sport 4K resolution: 3840x2160 | Electronista

Press Releases | Dell

32" is 3499, 24" is 1399$, should ship around christmas (december 23rd if you add it to your cart on their website), and the 28" should be under 1000$, shipping in early 2014...

I didn't see that one coming, I just bought an ultrasharp 27"... I have a 30 days return period, I'll see what I do... Would driving such a monitor severely impact performance on a 15" rMBP with the 2 GB graphic card?
     
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Dec 2, 2013, 04:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by FireWire View Post
Would driving such a monitor severely impact performance on a 15" rMBP with the 2 GB graphic card?
Yes.

Normally i would say "it depends on what you do with it" but in this case, I think we can say yes. Forget about shaders, you simply don't have the ROPs you need.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Mac Elite
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Dec 2, 2013, 04:42 PM
 
I don't do any gaming or 3D stuff. Mostly normal usage, with occasional Photoshop and Final Cut Pro (small projects).
     
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Dec 2, 2013, 05:22 PM
 
I understand, but I think you will see a problem anyway. GPUs designed for 4K resolutions like the GTX 780 and the new R9-290 series have 48 and 64 ROPs respectively. You have 16, and they're clocked lower to boot. No matter how you slice it, you will be rendering a 4K 3D scene 60 frames per second, and even if it doesn't change much between frames and the effects are low, this is an issue. Heck, the 360 has 16 ROPs as well, and it can't manage to render games at 1080p - a quarter of the pixels you're trying to push.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
 
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