MBP - Poor display at lower resolutions?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by lowbuzz, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. lowbuzz macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2008
    I have a last-gen MBP 2.2 15", bought on discount when the new models came out.

    Does anyone know if the display is just generally poor at resolutions lower than the standard 1440x900?

    I'm currently at 1280x800 and it seems a bit fuzzy, lacking sharpness. Down to 800x500, it looks like a blurry TV monitor. Got it on that setting right now - I can actually see visible artifacts - like a low-res jpeg at 30%.

    Do I have a bad display or is this common - the displays are just set to handle the highest resolution and the rest are crap on the laptop screen?

    Thanks for any info/advice. Going back to the default resolution before this thing kills my eyes :) Ahhhh... now everything is nice, sharp, and in focus again.

    Just seems odd that the next step down (1280x800) is pretty much worthless as well, as I bought the 15" to relieve eye strain.
  2. hotdamn macrumors 6502

    Jan 24, 2007
    Ottawa, ON, Canada
    yeahhhhh no offense but do you know how an LCD works?

    there is exactly 1440x900 little crystals in that lcd display, anything else and it WILL look like absolute garbage, since the 1:1 ratio between crystals and pixels is broken.
  3. lowbuzz thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2008
    No, I didn't know that actually. Thanks.

    My old iBook G4/1.2 seemed to be fairly clear at lower resolutions. Maybe this screen is just bigger so it's more noticeable.

    So if I buy an external LCD monitor, it's best to find one with the lowest resolution at the maximum screen size or what? They don't make widescreen CRTs, right?
  4. chrisbeebops macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2007
    What might be worthwhile is seeing if your applications have settings for font sizes. If it is possible to boost the font sizes, the screen will still look sharp, and you will have larger letters.

    Offhand, I know that at least Safari has this option.
  5. iToaster macrumors 68000


    May 3, 2007
    In front of my MacBook Pro
    In order to get an ok look out of a lower res. on your MBP, it would have to go down to exactly half of the original (720x450) so "1 pixel" = 4 pixels. If you find the text too small shift+command+(+/-) will increase and decrease the default text size.
  6. lowbuzz thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2008
    Sweet - thanks. I set the minimum font size in Safari as you suggested. I've been using Bean (freeware) for word processing, which allows for large type.
  7. lowbuzz thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2008
    That display resolution (720 x 450) isn't available in preferences. It'd be too small anyway - but if it were sharp, it'd be cool for watching netflix streaming movies in VMWare Fusion. I'd tried dropping the res on the display to "improve" the video quality, which obviously bombed big time.

    The hint for increasing the text size in Safari is pretty major, though - nice for browsing.

  8. zepharus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2007
    Pablo... Just so you know how LCD display technology works. Any LCD, be in laptop display or External monitor display, is MEANT to be displayed at its native resolution which is stamped on the box. This means each panel has that EXACT number on liquid crystal displays units inside the screen. Each one displays a single pixel at native resolution.

    If you go LOWER (higher really isnt possible) the screen dithers the image to use more crystal units to disply a single pixel. this produces reduced Image quality and clarity.

    As for you looking for a widscreen CRT... you need to join the rest of the world in the current time period as for all but the most precise of scentific/professional applications, the CRT is DEAD. gone... caput.
  9. squeeks macrumors 68040


    Jun 19, 2007
    did you NOT read post #2?
  10. zepharus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2007
    Im pretty certain that my post goes a bit deeper in the explanation of WHY. Now please go away the adults are talking...
  11. Fuchal macrumors 68020

    Sep 30, 2003
    Where are they?
  12. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    They are in the beer thread ... sampling products so they have more to post about.

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