15" Hi Res bumping up fonts pointless - go with 1440 display?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by GideanYates, Apr 21, 2010.

  1. GideanYates macrumors newbie

    Apr 18, 2010
    I have a 15 CTO on order and have been waffling whether the hi res option will be difficult to read things off the display. While I know I can increase the size of the fonts my question is does this defeat the purpose of the hi res option? I do like the extra screen real estate but if to use it comfortably I need to increase font sizes should I just cancel my order and pick up a stock 15 inch at my local apple store?

    Thanks in advance for your opinions.
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Does your  store have the hi res 15"? You should definitely check it if you're not sure. IMO hi res is no brainer, but everyone have different eyes
  3. ReallyBigFeet macrumors 68030


    Apr 15, 2010
    I've got really bad vision, I'm wearing bifocals in my early 40's. :(

    I'm looking at my shiny new 15" Hi res Glossy right now and I'm fine with keeping the native display resolution and just using zoom in Word or the browser to temp increase my font sizes as needed. That way my graphics programs still retain full resolution.
  4. GideanYates thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 18, 2010
    Nope, but I was comparing the 17" vs the standard 15" and the 17 felt small on my eyes...I would zoom in and it was fine....I just thought if I need to zoom in for pretty much anything I do then does the hi res make sense?
  5. snouter macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2009
    There are really two different problems here.

    I'm in my early 40s and just had to start wearing mo$#%r f$%*ing reading glasses last year. Yeah, none too pleased.

    Anyhow, I just picked up a new base 17" with the 1920x1200. Why?

    Because I use a lot of programs with a lot of palettes - Flash, Flex, PShop, Cinema 4d, After Effects, etc. It's FAR more annoying to have to juggle palettes and views than to have to deal with small type.

    When reading news and stuff, it's natural for me to hit cmd + or cmd - to adjust fonts, but when I'm doing work, I want to see a lot of screen.

    You just have to decide how you are going to use the computer and what is important to you.
  6. kazmac macrumors 604


    Mar 24, 2010
    On the silver scream
    Isn't that the truth...:(
  7. GideanYates thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 18, 2010

    Yup, that's more or less my conundrum. I like the real estate when using spreadsheets and having windows open side by side but when surfing I'll need to increase the font (not sure whether I'll need to zoom in on all programs...this will be my first mac so not sure how things exactly work on a mac compared to PC).

    Excuse me if this is a moronic question but zooming in and out retains the crispness of the image.....it's not like changing res?
  8. Sneakz macrumors 65816


    Jul 17, 2008
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Image quality goes down as it becomes pixelated.
  9. miketwo macrumors newbie

    Apr 21, 2010
    Bumping up the fonts in hi-res certainly does not defeat the purpose. In fact, I prefer larger fonts and am now going through the process of returning a brand new standard resolution 15", because the text is very pixelated and the screen is far worse in quality than my previous 2006 Macbook Pro 1440x900 display. I took a ride over to the Apple store to see the hi-res, and the fonts are very clean and smooth, even after enlarging them to a size that's on par with the standard res display. The more pixels per inch of the high resolution screen allows cleaner text at all sizes.

    I thought I was saving myself $100 and the frustration of having to bump up the text everywhere, but the quality of the current 1440x900 is so dismal that I'm returning mine despite the restock in order to get the hi-res.

    PS: If you use Firefox or Chrome instead of Safari, it remembers your zoom settings per-page. There's also a plugin for Firefox called NoSquint, which allows you to set the default zoom for all pages.
  10. DFTU101 macrumors member

    May 16, 2008
    OK, I have/had both the regular screen and the high res screen on the 15 inch MBP (just picked up the new high res screen the other day-sold the lower res screen MBP). The colors seem to be more rich and vibrant on the high res screen. The fonts are definitely smaller and harder to read. A couple of solutions (for most all people) are as follows:

    -As stated above, use Firefox and the addon “No Squint” that will automatically increase your font size to whatever you set (for example 110-120% of normal works well). This can be done under the preferences for a default global setting or you can set every website you normally visit to a different zoom level.

    -For Apple Mail:
    You can view the plain text version using the keyboard shortcut “Command-Option-P”, or toggle through the available formats using “Command-]” and “Command-[".

    But here's another work around if small font sizes bug you too. It adds a new key to your com.apple.mail.plist file that will govern the size of HTML text.

    1. Quit Mail
    2. Open the Terminal (found in Utilities) and type in the following:
    defaults write com.apple.mail MinimumHTMLFontSize 13
    3. Restart Mail.app and your HTML messages are readable.
    Of course you can set the point size to whatever you like. I have found the best size is 14-16.

    -Another application where the text can be really small is iCal. You can use the terminal again to increase the font size:
    defaults write com.apple.iCal AppleDisplayScaleFactor 1.1
    This, however, makes the information bubble cut off at the top when you try to edit an event.
    The best solution I have found is BusyCal which allows you to set the font and size to whatever you want. I like Lucida Grande 12 (regular or bold). The program costs $40-50 I think. It’s a great program and adds a lot to iCal.

    For Microsoft Word, etc. just set the zoom to 120-150% depending on your preference.

    There will still be places where the font is small and cannot be adjusted but for the most part the above should help.

    For me, I am glad I went with the higher res screen.
  11. harpster macrumors regular

    Jan 26, 2010
    I do a lot of web design and currently have a Powerbook G4 and 20" iMac and I like the way things appear on those computers. I want to get the new MacBook Pro so I've been looking at the 15" and 17" screens at the Apple store and comparing the differences especially the font sizes. When I opened a few web sites that I did on the 17" they did look smaller and I'm not sure I'd want to design in this resolution... however when I changed the resolution in the System Preferences one level down it was the same as my iMac 20" and looked real good... I was thinking I could just switch the resolution when needed in case I don't get completely comfortable with the standard res of the 17". I'm just waiting to see the 15" high-res anti glare screen before deciding and I might lean torward the 15" because I'm also getting a 23" (min size) monitor for desktop use and the 15" is a nice size for working on the road in coffee shops & airplanes where there's not a lot of table top space.
  12. psingh01 macrumors 65816

    Apr 19, 2004
    I saw them both at the store. I think it's fine to read from the High-res screen. It's the same resolution on my old 17" MBP and the physical LCD of the new 15" isn't that much smaller. So it's hardly a difference. I guess it depends on the individual's eyes.

    I wish I didn't go to the store though cause the 17" HD screens look incredible. I almost decided to get that one instead.
  13. vant macrumors 65816

    Jul 1, 2009
    Keep in mind that you can always reduce your resolution if you dislike it via display settings with the high-res.
  14. Ender17 macrumors regular

    Aug 3, 2005
    the high res 15" is in between the standard res 15 and 17 when you look at pixels per square inch (PPI)

    15.4" at 1440x900 = 110 PPI
    15.4" at 1680x1050 = 128 PPI
    17" at 1920x1200 = 133 PPI
  15. DesmoPilot macrumors 65816

    Feb 18, 2008
    If you ask me there is no reason to get the 1440 display (well unless your nearly blind or something I guess), the hi-res screen should be standard. Paying as much as you are for a MBP then getting a laughable 1440x900 resolution on what is supposed to be a professional product is definitely patronizing.
  16. therealseebs macrumors 65816


    Apr 14, 2010
    No, bumping up fonts does not defeat the point of the option, which is to have better graphics.
  17. miketwo macrumors newbie

    Apr 21, 2010
    and smoother fonts, large or small.
  18. ReallyBigFeet macrumors 68030


    Apr 15, 2010
    I'm typing this on my 15" Hi-res glossy and all I have to say is this is easily the most beautiful and clear type I've seen in ages. I've been using a MBP 2006 glossy model for the past two years solid and this is breathtaking by comparison. Stunning really.

    And again...I've got crap eyes, so take that FWIW. But the contrast and brightness here more than makes up for any issues with font sizes.
  19. GideanYates thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 18, 2010
    This mid 40's thing and eyes starting to go bites :)

    I think I'll hang on and wait (and wait and wait some more) for my 15" hi res glossy to ship.........
  20. Relznuk macrumors 6502


    Sep 27, 2009
    UT, USA
    I have horrible vision caused by a rare eye disease. The change from standard resolution do high res did not affect my vision significantly (especially since you can still zoom, alter icon and text sizes, etc.)
  21. mac*chick macrumors member

    Apr 25, 2010
    This thread is making me feel better about my order of the high res anti glare i7 15" Macbook Pro. I ordered mine over a week ago and unfortunately the store had no new Macbooks in the store (I'm in a smaller city in Canada) so I just ordered the anti glare. I've read so much on the subject and I'll just have to wait until mine arrives. Good to know the zoom is a viable option.

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