5K Photos at 2048x1152?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Goody13, Jul 29, 2016.

  1. Goody13, Jul 29, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2016

    Goody13 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2016
    Location:
    Plymouth, UK
    #1
    I have moved my display resolution one to the default at equivalent to 2048x1152.

    This may seem like a stupid question, but you don't know until you ask; does this mean that photos and the like will not display at 5K?
     
  2. Krevnik macrumors 68040

    Krevnik

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2003
    #2
    Sort of. Here's how it works:

    The resolution you pick isn't really in pixels anymore, the OS refers to them as points. The screen's pixel buffer will always be at least as large as the native screen's pixel resolution. There is a multiplication factor here.

    So in your case, you have a screen that's 2048x1152 points. A multiplication factor of 3, and a pixel buffer that's 6144x3456 in size. So the pixel buffer is actually a bit larger than the screen. And for apps that support it, which should be most, images are rendered using pixels for the extra sharpness. But since your screen is now rendering more pixels, it has to scale that buffer down for the screen. So one pixel in your photo is no longer one pixel on your screen, although it will all still fit.

    The default screen setting is set so that the multiplication factor (2), multiplied by the size in points, gives the screen's native pixel resolution. So an image at 100% has pixels that are 1:1 with the screen pixels. If that sort of accuracy is important, such as critical photo editing for professional use, it may be an annoyance. Otherwise, I wouldn't worry too much about it.
     
  3. Goody13 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2016
    Location:
    Plymouth, UK
    #3
    Thanks for the explanation, if a little complex! To clarify then, does this mean that even though the scale I have set doesn't mean it it full 5K, it is not far off it?
     
  4. Krevnik macrumors 68040

    Krevnik

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2003
    #4
    Close enough. The key thing to keep in mind is that macOS will never actually make the screen smaller than native in pixels. It may say 2048x1152, but that's used to lay out the screen, not for drawing it.
     
  5. Goody13 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2016
    Location:
    Plymouth, UK
    #5
    Thanks (again!) Close enough is good enough for me. I only take photos as a hobby and it's important I can read text on e-mails/websites etc!
     

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