How poor is the font on a MBA (or any non-retina screen) in Mojave?

Lara F

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
May 5, 2005
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Montreal, Quebec
Good to hear, thanks! 2011 MBA so not getting Mojave for now unfortunately, but with Apple's pricing these days I may have no choice but to get another Air when this one bites the dust. :-/ I can live with the non retina font rendering as is, but wouldn't want it worse.
 
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AlexJoda

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Apr 8, 2015
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I am running Mojave on my newly bought MacBook Pro Mid 2012, the last one without Retina display (and the last one that has all the ports and is fully serviceable on my own, disk, RAM, battery is easily exchangeable). Mojave is a massive downgrade regarding the display! I am thinking to go back to High Sierra, because this is not fixable so easy. Even the console patches for enabling subpixel antialiasing did not solve the problem because this did not bring back the old subpixel rendering used in former MacOS.

One can say that everybody is now using Retina displays, but I will not upgrade my 5K iMac too because I am using a second 1440p 27" display with it. Every 1x display (and some say even Retina displays and 4K displays to some degree) is having this problem.

The display quality in Mojave in unacceptable for me and until this is not fixed I will not upgrade.....
[doublepost=1537096614][/doublepost]
Good to hear, thanks! 2011 MBA so not getting Mojave for now unfortunately, but with Apple's pricing these days I may have no choice but to get another Air when this one bites the dust. :-/ I can live with the non retina font rendering as is, but wouldn't want it worse.
Unfortunately it will get much worse with a non Retina MBA...... (look at my other comment)
 

Lara F

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Original poster
May 5, 2005
850
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Montreal, Quebec
@AlexJoda Thanks for the alternate input, sigh. I'm sure tolerance varies per person. :/ I'm guessing you already updated to the latest beta version?

Maybe just as well I'd have to jump through hoops to install Mojave, I wouldn't use the dark theme anyway so not missing out there. And in the meantime pray for a miracle not-outrageously-priced retina MBA update next month (hah). :p
 
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AlexJoda

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Apr 8, 2015
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@AlexJoda Thanks for the alternate input, sigh. I'm sure tolerance varies per person. :/ I'm guessing you already updated to the latest beta version?

Maybe just as well I'd have to jump through hoops to install Mojave, I wouldn't use the dark theme anyway so not missing out there. And in the meantime pray for a miracle not-outrageously-priced retina MBA update next month (hah). :p
I think they need to bring a Retina MBA to eliminate the last non Retina computer if they don't want to risk protest with offering Mojave with it...It's a suitable difference to the former MacOS but you will notice it...
 

wubsylol

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Nov 6, 2014
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I am honestly not a fan of Mojave font rendering on Retina screens either, however this is probably just down to preference and it being different generally.
 

ijlakw

macrumors member
Oct 19, 2013
69
218
I am running Mojave on my newly bought MacBook Pro Mid 2012, the last one without Retina display (and the last one that has all the ports and is fully serviceable on my own, disk, RAM, battery is easily exchangeable). Mojave is a massive downgrade regarding the display! I am thinking to go back to High Sierra, because this is not fixable so easy. Even the console patches for enabling subpixel antialiasing did not solve the problem because this did not bring back the old subpixel rendering used in former MacOS.

One can say that everybody is now using Retina displays, but I will not upgrade my 5K iMac too because I am using a second 1440p 27" display with it. Every 1x display (and some say even Retina displays and 4K displays to some degree) is having this problem.

The display quality in Mojave in unacceptable for me and until this is not fixed I will not upgrade.....
[doublepost=1537096614][/doublepost]

Unfortunately it will get much worse with a non Retina MBA...... (look at my other comment)
Completely agree... totally unacceptable. Fonts are slightly blurry and lighter. There has to be a way at the command line to modify this.
 
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arpi

macrumors member
Feb 25, 2014
30
33
Installed on a 2013 non retina iMac. Fonts look horrible. It is a pain to work with this font rendering. Went back to high sierra after an hour.
 
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ugh

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2013
65
23
Just upgraded to Mojave. OMG. This is utter c***! Looks like there is no way around it. Barely acceptable on retina displays, total trash anywhere else, including my Apple Cinema display. This macbook pro won't even support a Retina external monitor. Why did they even allow this upgrade?

WTF.

Downgrade in process! Jobs would have never let this happen! Unbelievable!

There needs to be disclaimers everywhere - anyone that values fonts, DO NOT UPGRADE.
 
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harvester32

macrumors member
Oct 29, 2012
45
28
I ran into the same thing and installed the GM candidate through the beta program. I went back to HS and will be stuck here until they address this. Fonts can be blurry enough (hence the reason for smoothing), we don't need help making them look like C**p!
 

ManuCH

macrumors 6502a
May 7, 2009
533
157
Switzerland
I notice the issue on my external 27" 4K display as well as on my Apple Cinema Display. The absolute worst is if I use Google Chrome - it's completely unusable, it gives me an eye sore.

Interestingly, not all apps behave the same. I guess it depends on what fonts they use.
[doublepost=1537855374][/doublepost]OK, apparently it can be fixed by using the following command:

Code:
defaults write -g CGFontRenderingFontSmoothingDisabled -bool NO
 

ugh

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2013
65
23
I notice the issue on my external 27" 4K display as well as on my Apple Cinema Display. The absolute worst is if I use Google Chrome - it's completely unusable, it gives me an eye sore.

Interestingly, not all apps behave the same. I guess it depends on what fonts they use.
[doublepost=1537855374][/doublepost]OK, apparently it can be fixed by using the following command:

Code:
defaults write -g CGFontRenderingFontSmoothingDisabled -bool NO
Sorry this does NOT fix it. Still much worse than it used to be. The old subpixel font rendering system is simply gone!
 
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Merode

macrumors 6502a
Nov 5, 2013
552
380
Warszawa, Poland
I use MacFamilyTree and yesterday after installing Mojave I see signifcant aliasing in tree view rendering. It's not exactly fonts but I would have noticed it earlier - the difference is quite dramatic. I did not know of any such issues in beta so it was not me looking for issues.

I wonder if these two things are connected.

EDIT: It's on late 2013 rMBP, so retina.
 
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ugh

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2013
65
23
I use MacFamilyTree and yesterday after installing Mojave I see signifcant aliasing in tree view rendering. It's not exactly fonts but I would have noticed it earlier - the difference is quite dramatic. I did not know of any such issues in beta so it was not me looking for issues.

I wonder if these two things are connected.
People found these issues in beta, there are many threads. Apple doesn't care. I feel like an idiot for not finding those threads before upgrading. Apple has lost my trust.
 
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Merode

macrumors 6502a
Nov 5, 2013
552
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Warszawa, Poland
People found these issues in beta, there are many threads. Apple doesn't care. I feel like an idiot for not finding those threads before upgrading. Apple has lost my trust.
I see that aliasing on retina screen though. I think I'll contact developer.
 

ugh

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2013
65
23
I see that aliasing on retina screen though. I think I'll contact developer.
IMHO the "retina" screen is not quite high enough resolution to not have grayscale antialiasing appear significantly worse than subpixel rendering. You get literally 3 times the horizontal resolution by going to subpixel rendering.

I get the feeling that the whole rendering engine is focused around the new pentile iPhone displays, and without a stern "NO" voice at Apple they just gutted the whole thing even though there are millions of devices that still benefit from this.
 

ChrisChaval

macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2016
585
500
Milan, Italy
The display quality in Mojave in unacceptable for me and until this is not fixed I will not upgrade.....
I have not upgraded only and exactly because of this issue

some say there ain't no noticeable difference on non retina screens, others say there is

the screenshots in this thread seem to speak a clear language. would like to see a comparison between non retina screenshots HS vs Mojave though ..

I will not go Mojave with my MB Air nor with my Mini which is connected to a non retina screen

what is an OS good for if you can barely read the fonts?

and how do you dare dropping technology quite obviously needed by products you are still selling today ?
 
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TokMok3

macrumors 6502a
Aug 22, 2015
623
399
From what I understand Mojave removed anti-aliasing - I'm wondering if anyone running the beta on a non-retina screen could report how noticeable the effect is vs. High Sierra? Thanks.
Fonts on my MacBook Pro 15 2015 16GB are very dark and clear today, yesterday after installing Mojave the fonts were kind gray and blurry specially in Safari. I let the system index all night and this morning I restarted and the fonts in Macrumors are very sharp and clear.

The only problem that I have is rendering a PDF with preview. On the MacBook Pro the fonts are crystal clear, but on my LG (2560 x 1080 (UW-UXGA - Ultra Wide - Ultra Extended Graphics Array) monitor it's a pain to the eyes to read text using preview because the fonts are not clear. This external monitor was able to display crystal clear fonts with Sierra only.

Fonts on my MacBook Air 11 2013 8GB are very clear, but I had to install a display profile for altering the color with the extension .icc, I founded this tweak in this forums long time ago, this makes the screen colors darker.

Well, that's what I have observed so far.
 
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