Scale 1680x1050 on rMB without an app

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by thadoggfather, Apr 26, 2015.

  1. thadoggfather, Apr 26, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018

    thadoggfather macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007

    Edit - beingninformed works with Mojave and 2017 mb so enjoy!

    Check System Preferences->Displays->Profiles->Color LCD->Open profile->Line 17

    The only thing we care about here is the 610 and the a027 though your numbers may be different (i.e. there are different manufacturers out there)

    NOTE: If on OS X 10.11 Golden Master (GM) candidate or presumably with subsequent builds from there too as this post ages over time, need to disable 'System Integrity Protection' from recovery mode first before making changes to the DisplayProductID file, follow this post and you will then be good to go and set up for success with this mod:

    We will want to navigate to /System/Library/Displays/Overrides/ in finder if on Yosemite (see the next paragraph break for file structure of El Cap for the file) and choose the folder that corresponds with your first number, mine being 610. The folder I want is called DisplayVendorID-610.

    NOTE: If on El Capitan, you can find it in /System/Library/Displays/Contents/Resources/Overrides

    Inside you want to find the corresponding files with your second number, mine being a027. The file I want is called DisplayProductID-a027.

    To avoid dealing with getting rights to the file, we will just make a copy on the desktop and modify that. After that, open the copy you just made on the Desktop in TextEdit. Within the <array> portion you will want to make a new line and paste in <data>AAANIAAACDQAAAAB</data>. This is the data for the 1680x1050 HiDPI resolution. Save this file. This can also be the last line in <array> without issue

    Then you want to copy and paste the original DisplayProductID-a027 (or whatever your folder name is) somewhere else as a backup for piece of mind should you prefer (i put mine in documents folder), otherwise paste in yours from the desktop to that original folder (so its overwritten). Make sure the name matches exactly or it will not work.

    Reboot your machine and switch the resolution in system preferences-> displays

    **If you want to see what 1680x1050 scaled looks like, or the RDM 'status bar dropdown toggle' app for 1536x960 listed below/ easy access to toggling resolutions without going into system preferences, here's a sample pic**:

    most of this guide is borrowed from and modified to fit within context of rMB/El Capitan and clarify some things

    add on instructions for 1536x960, a middle ground between 1440x900 and 1680x1050 (as you might expect)
    this resolution requires an app that 'lives on the status bar as a drop down toggle icon' but its free and once you set the resolution if you so desire you can exit the app its just to kick it into the mode you want it i've found it really benign and small footprint in my experience, it's called RDM and by a jailbreak dev so much love (and would edit title if i could but i can't):

    Add this line to the last part of that string of arrays in the file (whereas 1680 we made as the first string of that):

    reboot, start RDM-> go to system preferences>security>open anyways, select it in drop down from menu bar-> profit

    Subnote- if on OS X 10.12, reboot holding cmd+r to be in recovery mode, open terminal and type "csrutil disable" to disable system integrity checker to be able to c+p the new file to that folder,

    Once done, do "csrutil enable" in recovery mode to re-enable that protection
  2. 212rikanmofo macrumors 68000

    Jan 31, 2003
    Wow that's awesome! I can't wait to try this out when I receive mine. How does it look at that resolution on the 12" screen? Is it useable on a daily basis or do you find it difficult to see? I've heard of people using 3rd party apps to set the screen to 1920x1200 and I think that's pushing it. But 1680x1050 seems to be the sweet spot. Could you post some screen shots? Thanks for this!
  3. thadoggfather, Apr 26, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015

    thadoggfather thread starter macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007


    not sure how helpful this will be, its a joy to look at on the screen itself. at night when I'm half asleep sometimes i switch back to 1280x800, but i think 1440x900 and 1680x1050 now are gonna be my day drivers
  4. xmichaelp macrumors 68000


    Jul 10, 2012
    Is it laggy? And is it any less sharp than the lower settings?
  5. thadoggfather thread starter macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007
    neither as far as I can perceive :D

    if you don't like this setting added in system prefs, just remove the data string and reboot again and back to normal.

    its definitely worth giving it a try
  6. MarkW19 macrumors 65816

    Sep 13, 2002
    Surrey, UK
    Thanks, will try this when I get my rMB. Is it worth changing though, ie is there a significant improvement in real-estate from 1440 that it's worth doing this?
  7. IsaacKa, Apr 26, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015

    IsaacKa macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    Thank you! That is great.
    I was looking for that.
    I added two other resolutions:



    You can use the
    Property List Editor and the calculator for hexadecimal to edit your own resolutions.
    Save a copy of your original file.
    If something goes wrong while playing with resolutions you can restart in safe mode (pressing the shift key while restarting).
  8. TheOakTrail macrumors newbie

    Apr 17, 2015
    Thanks for this. Man, the screen real estate is fantastic, but I do find that many things are just a bit too small for my tastes. From far away, there isn't any noticeable blurriness, but up close it's definitely more noticeable than 1440x900.
  9. thadoggfather thread starter macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007
    i don't notice any difference in clarity toggling between 1440 and 1680.

    maybe having font smoothing enabled is making the difference, after all in the "?" part of font smoothing (under System prefs-> appearance) it specifically states smaller text is harder to read with that setting.

    Give that a try?
  10. Dekimasu macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2008
    Any effect on battery life from doing things like this?
  11. 212rikanmofo macrumors 68000

    Jan 31, 2003
    Awesome find, I will also try 1920x1200 as well. This will definitely come in handy when I need the extra screen real estate! :)

    This just made the RMB more appealing!
  12. chleuasme macrumors 6502

    Apr 17, 2012
    For anyone interested, the following line should add the support for the HiDPI 2x 1536x960 resolution (couldn't test, at your own risk):

    That will be equivalent to the gain of resolution with the standard 2x 1920x1200 on a rMBP15 (0.75% zoom out or 1.333x).
    2x 1680x1050 and 1920x1200 on the rMB12 :D you guys are crazy
  13. melb00m macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2011
    Awesome :) Subscribed to this thread and will try out right away once we European Apple peasants can finally get our hands on those MacBooks...

    Did anyone try the panel's native resolution yet? :)
  14. Robbenisland macrumors member

    Apr 15, 2015
    Is it also possible to just use an app like quickres to switch to 1680?
  15. noobinator macrumors 603


    Jun 19, 2009
    Pasadena, CA
    What are the benefits doing it this way over an app? Sounds like someone who doesn't know very much could potentially cause some hard to fix problems.
  16. nrubenstein macrumors 6502

    Aug 5, 2008
    Washington, DC
    Sadly, 1680 starts to really push the resolution limits of the display and pixel artifacting shows up.

    It's not as bad as 1920x1080 (which you get with AirDisplay mirroring), but it doesn't look good if your head accidentally strays inside 20" of the screen. Which is kind of too bad, because I love the real estate.
  17. IsaacKa macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    It just gives you more options.
    You are right.
  18. nrubenstein macrumors 6502

    Aug 5, 2008
    Washington, DC
    The benefit is that in exchange for 45 seconds in TextEdit and Finder, you can add additional resolutions *without* having yet another app running in the background, creating memory leaks or other issues.
  19. Dayv macrumors 6502

    Aug 18, 2009
    Nothing that an OS reinstall couldn't fix, though.
  20. 212rikanmofo, Apr 27, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2015

    212rikanmofo macrumors 68000

    Jan 31, 2003
    Just tried this and now using 1680x1050 on my new RMB and it looks awesome! :) Thanks for this tip. This is the perfect resolution for me, and since its smaller, the retina screen is very sharp and I can still see everything crystal clear!

    I tried adding in the option for 1920x1200 but it didn't work, seems the max i can go up to is 1680x1050.
  21. thadoggfather thread starter macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007
  22. blulegend macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2008
    When I added the 1680x1050 line, my display preferences only shows 4 options. Did it only show 3 options before?
  23. Kristine macrumors 6502a

    Feb 21, 2005
    This is awesome. Just got my rMB last night and coming from a 15" rMBP the one thing I missed was the higher resolution (always used the highest resolution).

    Problem solved. #
    My rMBP is going up for sale.
  24. shenan1982 macrumors 68040


    Nov 23, 2011
    This is awesome. Thanks for the tip.

    So by changing this, it drops the retina fonts or whatever people were talking about when using custom fonts, right? I've used the display menu apps, and don't notice a difference, but throwing it out there for my OCD friends.
  25. thadoggfather thread starter macrumors G4


    Oct 1, 2007
    no it was 4 before, its just 1440x900 was the max (far right). now the lowest option has knocked off afaik, everything moved down one (or to the left of that scaler menu) and 1680x1050 took the place of where 1440x900 option used to be (far right)

    terrible explanation but hope that helps. I'm half asleep this morning

    glad to help people out and that you guys are liking it :D


    eh its just not native/2 scaling (1:1 mapping) but neither is 1280x800 the default option since 2304x1400 is the native resolution technically going 1152x700 would be the one. But i don't see a difference, especially with font smoothing off (check box under appearance in system prefs). ymmv on opinion on that one but i'm picky with screens too.

Share This Page