Retina scaling options

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Forkjulle, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. Forkjulle macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2012
    #1
    I'm still waiting for my rMBP (should arrive next week), but I was wondering about the display scaling options.

    I'm getting the 2.6ghz (with 16gb RAM and 512SSD) and was wondering what - if any - performance differences will be apparent when changing between "Best For Retina" and the highest scaling (smallest text) option.

    I personally enjoy more screen real estate, but I'm guessing there is a performance reason why the maximum isn't recommended.

    What has been your experience?
     
  2. stevelam macrumors 65816

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  3. Forkjulle thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    In what areas? Which apps etc?
     
  4. twietee macrumors 603

    twietee

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    Jan 24, 2012
    #4
    Since you're a fan of screen real estate, check out this thread:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1387363

    Besides that it's fun to read, I understood that, because there isn't any scaling involved, there isn't any lag or choppy-ness appearing. It's getting rather tiny of course.
     
  5. Bebel macrumors member

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    Jan 8, 2008
    #5
    I run almost exclusively at the 1680x1050 equivalent and I quite enjoy my computing experience at that resolution. The 1440 is a bit cramped for my tastes and the visual degradation from Best for Retina to the 1680 is very minor and worth the tradeoff for the addition workspace.
     
  6. Forkjulle thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2012
    #6
    If you open an A4 image (300DPI) in Photoshop, at 'Best For Retina', then will you see the entire page on the screen (without the need to scroll)?

    Or will you need to choose a higher resolution?
     
  7. nontroppo, Sep 28, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012

    nontroppo macrumors 6502

    nontroppo

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    Mar 11, 2009
    #7
    Currently as Photoshop is yet to be updated, it shows images pixel doubled (using nearest neighbour scaling, therefore the scaling introduces no changes whatsoever to the original image). When photoshop is updated, it will be able to show images with 1:1 pixel resolution, so you'll see twice as much of the image as you do currently. When at 2880x1800, you see 1:1 pixels and I personally love this mode for working in Lightroom as I mostly use keyboard commands and love the small UI.

    Note A4 at 300dpi is ~3500x2480, so you'll still have to scroll a bit.

    Performance wise, I don't see any clear differences when working (computational analysis, working on graphics etc), but Safari can sometimes scroll a bit more jerkily on some web pages. Spaces switching used to occasionally scroll jerkily at 1920x1200, but I don't see that with 10.8.2. I've measured the CPU load pushing the window compositor and see about ~1-2% more CPU use at 1920 compared to 1440HiDPI or 2880. I also program OpenGL stimuli and see a loss of ~5-10FPS IIRC at 1920HiDPI, but still get >260FPS when I disable VSync, faster than my desktop Mac Pro + ATI 5870!

    You should seriously get a copy of SwitchResX, which allows you to automagically switch to different resolutions for different apps (Lightroom-2880, Scrivener=1920, Matlab=1440 etc), and you can quickly use keyboard shortcuts to switch; I bind ⌘⌥F1-F4 to 1440HiDPI, 1680HiDPI, 1920HiDPI and 2880, takes about a second to switch.
     
  8. stevelam macrumors 65816

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    #8
    Any areas with UI interaction, especially with images. Zooming, dragging, panning, etc.
     
  9. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

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    Jun 15, 2012
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    #10
    I've been running 1920x1200 since the got my rMBP. Scrolling and moving from fullscreen to full screen has been has been very smooth for me. I know many complain -- perhaps my expectations are lower (I just came to the "dark side" from Windows for the first time). Screen scrolling definitely did get faster after the 10.8.2 update.

    I use Photoshop and Lightroom regularly. All good. I've yet to understand what the issues are with Photoshop on the retina display.
     
  10. nontroppo macrumors 6502

    nontroppo

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    Mar 11, 2009
    #11
    I've seen a few posters on these forums bombastically claiming that Photoshop is unworkable, and never to buy a rMBP but a cMBP if you are working with CS suite. Yet the only problem on the rMBP with Adobe programs is that it displays with the same resolution as on a cMBP ( http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=15871694&postcount=13 ), yet with the options to change resolution and improve DPI!!! Anyway, many users will still see an improvement when the retina update is released (unless you use 2880 and are keyboard savvy / have good eyesight). Nevertheless, even when Lightroom is updated, I will continue to use it at 2880x because the UI chrome is still very useable yet takes significantly less space onscreen.

    To the OP, just to clarify, the maximum resolution available in Screen preferences is 1920x1200, but you can toggle the "native" resolution of 2880x1800 using 3rd party options mentioned above. There is no performance loss at all running at 2880x1800. At 1920x1200 HiDPI the display is being rendered at 3840x2400 then interpolated down to 2880x1800, and it is this mode which I was describing when talking about performance in my post above. Personally I do not see lag in any window management with applications like Lightroom / Illustrator at that resolution, and the minor random stutter I saw with 10.8 with spaces switching is not present in 10.8.2. I don't surf facebook, but that seems to be what most people complain about at 1920HiDPI. The hardware itself is easily more than capable of running 1920HiDPI.
     
  11. Forkjulle thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2012
    #12
    This is a great reply. My question is, why didn't Apple make it easy to switch to 2800 resolution, instead of letting users have to use 3rd party apps? Surely there is a technical (and valid) reason why they recommend their own options instead?
     
  12. Purant macrumors 6502

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    Aug 26, 2012
    #13
    They just decided everything would be too small to be usable. No other reason.
     
  13. nontroppo macrumors 6502

    nontroppo

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    Mar 11, 2009
    #14
    Yes, i think it is the usual "Apple knows best" attitude — but Apple certainly doesn't know best for every user (or sometimes for most users!!!)

    Anyway, SwitchResX does stuff like keyboard bindings and app switching that Apple have never supported, so even if Apple added 2880x to system preferences, I'd still use SwitchResX!
     
  14. Forkjulle thread starter macrumors regular

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    #15
    1. Does SwitchRes compromise the system in any way?

    2. Are there any screenshots of the system running SwitchRes at 2800 resolution? (I want to see the menus etc.)
     
  15. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502

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    Melbourne, Australia
    #16
    It's just a script, it's like 400 kB :)

    There is an app on the App Store called "Display Menu". It also adds an option to switch resolutions including HiDPI modes.

    http://cdn.macrumors.com/article-new/2012/06/hugedashboard.png
     
  16. stevelam macrumors 65816

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    Nov 4, 2010
    #17
    Because 2880 res on a 15" screen is incredibly tiny and unusable, only pushed forward by desperate people trying too hard to justify their purchase. Apple would never officially sanction such an idiotic option.
     
  17. stevelam macrumors 65816

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    #18
    Photoshop in its current state is only usable on an external monitor. Some people switch to ridiculous 2880 res for the time being which is really a last minute resort tactic since its barely usable at such tiny UI sizes. have fun trying to read layer and file names.

    If you're photoshopping at retina resolutions "regularly", I really hope no ones paying you money.
     
  18. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

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    #19
    So help me out -- why is it only usable on an external monitor?
     
  19. terraphantm macrumors 68040

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    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #20
    Because he's a troll who can't comprehend that something that doesn't work for him may work fine for others. Even when everything is updated to scale properly at retina resolutions, he'll find something else to complain about.

    Photoshop does look pretty crappy in the retina modes. But it's usable enough - though it would be wise to preview the content on something that displays the images properly before publishing

    I personally have no issues using the 2880 mode when necessary. I find most of the UI elements to be readable (and it's not like I can't sit closer if I have to)
     
  20. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

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    #21
    Good tip. I have several external monitors running at their native resolutions -- so I should be fine.
     
  21. buddyspencer macrumors regular

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    Oct 4, 2005
    Location:
    Germany
    #22
    You're talking about SwitchRes or SwitchResX? It's really only a script?
     
  22. nontroppo macrumors 6502

    nontroppo

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    Mar 11, 2009
    #23
    Stevelam has never provided any data or evidence why he thinks Photoshop is unusable, he just ignore evidence that shows it presents images at the same resolution as a low DPI display, i.e. an external monitor. Not sure what bee is in his bonnet, but Photoshop displays identically on a cMBP (~120DPI and therefore as many external monitors) as on the rMBP. There is no distortion in the graphics buffer, so images are technically identical. Photoshop looks worse than apps that have already been updated of course, and he confuses the relative resolution of photoshop to retina aware apps. Again, the display is identical:

    [​IMG]

    Until Stevelam actually backs up his statements with evidence, I think it is best to ignore such statements...
     
  23. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

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    Jun 15, 2012
    Location:
    Houston, TX USA
    #24
    ^^^^^
    I like your comparison. I saw it in another thread and it makes me worry less about using PS under retina. Certainly I've had no issues using the UI under 1920x1200 or 2560x1440.

    Postings like this are a big reason why I nearly skipped the rMBP. Even though photography is a hobby to me, it was important to me that the application "work." Of course, for what I do, that concern was silly. I'm really happy with my purchase.
     
  24. Forkjulle thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2012
    #25
    Wait.

    Using SwitchRes to achieve 2800 screen resolution, is Photoshop crisp and not blurred?
     

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