Question About Retina Technology

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by carbonmotion, Dec 2, 2012.

  1. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    Jan 28, 2004
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    San Francisco, CA
    #1
    I own a late-2011 Macbook Pro 15" with the Hi-Dp display. Is there a hack that will allow me to turn on Retina mode on my mac? I understand that the end result will only be pseudo-retina, but I was just curious to see if there was such an option.
     
  2. Moshe1010 macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 27, 2010
    #2
    No. Your display is only 1440X900 pixels, and you can't go more then that.
     
  3. carbonmotion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #3
    i have the 1680x1050 display, i was wondering if there's a hack to to a retina scale down to 1440X900?
     
  4. simsaladimbamba

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    located
    #4
    But what would be the benefit from that? You would lose screen real estate (and 1440 x 900 pixel is abysmal on that display) and gain (if it is even possible to do so) only a minuscule better graphic rendering. Your resolution is only 1.36 times better than the standard resolution. A "Retina" display has four (4) times the resolution of that.
     
  5. carbonmotion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #5

    my question relates to whether such a hack exists and i'm assuming the answer is no. the other factors you mentioned are subjective and debatable.
     
  6. Moshe1010 macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    it's not something that you can manage with a software. You are limited by your hardware.
     
  7. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

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    Oregon
    #7
    The only reason why this works on the rMBP is because it has 4 times as many pixels as the 1440 x 900 display on a standard MBP. The pixels are so small that it can emulate these other resolutions. With a lower resolution display, you're basically just running at a non-native resolution which just looks bad in general.
     
  8. xxcysxx, Dec 2, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2012

    xxcysxx macrumors 6502

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    Oct 12, 2011
    #8
    well if you're using mountain lion, then there is an option for "best for display", the os will simply select the appropriate resolution for the display, which will likely be native resolution for your circumstance. however, if you mean to take your objects from your 1440x900 resolution and draw it at 2880x1800 and then scaled it back to 1440x1800 then i don't think that's possible for your hardware. since that technique is engineered by apple to get arround drawing objects at four pixels at a time for their retina screen, which would looked horible.

    but i think what you're trying to achieve is a "high dot per inch" object rendering, so object be natively bigger. however, i would avoid the idea of scaled resolution since this will come as an expense of proccesing overhead. it is not very efficient this way, the current scaling method by apple is still in the maturing stage, but i feel they will soon phase away from scaled resolution as technology evolve, since it is naturally inefficient.
     
  9. pgiguere1, Dec 2, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2012

    pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

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    #9
    Actually, yes, you can. This has been discovered even before rMBPs were announced.

    You will need to be registered as an Apple developer (free) in order to download Quartz Debug which is part of the Xcode tools.

    You will find Quartz Debug in a .dmg called "Graphic Tools" once you are logged in on the Mac Dev Center.

    Open Quartz Debug, then click on Menu -> UI Resolution and check “Enable HiDPI display modes”.

    Log out of OS X and back in then when you will go in the Displays section of System Preferences, Retina (HiDPI) resolutions will be listed like this:

    [​IMG]

    Of course you will lose screen real estate, but choosing a resolution such as 840 x 525 (HiDPI) will let you see Retina-optimized graphics in all their glory on your 1680 x 1050 screen.

    This is mostly for testing purpose though, as a 840 x 525 screen isn't really usable for most apps. You could also experiment with 1440 x 900 (HiDPI), but I doubt the gain would be really noticeable, as mentioned. You're free to try though.
     
  10. Saladinos macrumors 68000

    Saladinos

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    #10
    If you're a developer and you're asking if there is a way to test how your app will look on a retina screen (to make sure you've not left anything out), you can use Quartz Debug to enable it.

    If you're not, don't worry about it. It wouldn't even be "pseudo-retina".

    The retina monicker refers to the combination of having an extremely pixel-dense screen and higher resolution graphics. This allows you to use graphics with more pixels (hence detail) but which are the same physical size.

    If you just enable Hi-DPI mode, the physical size of things on your screen would be enormous.

    If you just had an ultra-dense display, the physical size of things on your screen would be tiny.

    Basically, they go together. Only having either one separately makes your viewing much less comfortable.

    You should also note that the scale factor for Hi-DPI mode is pegged at 2x. It's not possible to change it to some non-integer value. That would come with a big performance hit - pixels would not align and adjacent pixels would need to be blended and averaged together. That averaging process is just going to blur the details and negate the benefit of scaling at all.

    I've attached a screenshot from my RMBP. Click it in Safari to open it and click the opened image again to zoom 100%. Look at the physical size of each button and window on your screen - that's how big it will be in Hi-DPI mode on your machine.
     

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