The Point of Wide Screen Displays?

Phillyzero

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 1, 2008
187
0
This isn't a distinct Apple related question, rather I'd just like to know what is great about wide screen displays?

I'm not talking about something such as the macbook at 13.3 inches, this mostly applies to 20 inch plus; A lot of websites still aren't adapted for fluid width adjustments and/or don't bother centering themselves on wide screen monitors. This makes a lot of pages distorted or thrust to the left side of the screen leaving tons of empty space on the monitor. Also, a lot of games don't do well on wide screen either, sure you can set the settings to full screen, but the game play at that view is distinctly distorted and flattened. So why are wide screens constantly being handed to us if they don't really 'enhance' any computer experience, I mean it's obviously the panel and the build of the screen, not whether it's wide or not that determines its quality.
 

CharlieKirk

macrumors 6502
Jun 22, 2008
293
0
Good question.

I've wondered this, yesterday I saw CompUSA, selling widescreen monitors that are 23 inches, cheaper than non-widescreen monitors at 22 inches.

I'm assuming they are somehow cheaper to make, probably something to do with the pixel size, I'm not sure though.
 

miniConvert

macrumors 68040
A wider screen means more space.

Hardly anyone runs applications such as browsers full-screen. On widescreen monitors it's often easy to fit in two browser windows side-by-side, and still have space left over. You can change your browser window to be whatever size is convenient - so the size of the screen makes no difference to how websites display.

Practically all games on the market now cater for widescreen resolutions. On WoW, you can see more on a widescreen monitor, which is nice :)

I'm on a 'standard' monitor right now. Only I'm not, I'm on two standard monitors, side by side. I'd much rather have a single widescreen.

So the question, really, is... the point of standard displays, now we have widescreen?
 

Moks

macrumors member
Jul 18, 2008
79
0
UK
The point of widescreen displays is to make people who have 'standard' displays want to go out and buy a new screen.

When everyone has widescreen they'll introduce something else.

And so on.

It's called progress. :D
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,248
1,319
Like miniConvert said, not many people have their browser opened to full-screen on a 22+" monitor.

Also, most video content nowadays is wide-screen (not that its aspect matches the widescreen aspect, but it still usually looks better than on a square screen).
 

portent

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2004
623
2
...this mostly applies to 20 inch plus; A lot of websites still aren't adapted for fluid width adjustments and/or don't bother centering themselves on wide screen monitors....
Behold, as I use my new 40" panoramic monitor to display...one webpage, maximized

That's why people invented windowing interfaces. Multiple windows, multiple documents, multiple programs.

Which leads to my sig:
 

mwpeters8182

macrumors 6502
Apr 16, 2003
411
0
Boston, MA
My main issue with the widescreen thing (mostly with notebooks and the smaller monitors) is that 1280x1024 has been, in many cases, replaced with 1440x900 (or even 1280x800). I want my vertical lines back.
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,219
2,109
The point? Widescreen gives you more space.

WXGA (1280x800) vs. XGA (1024x768) = 23.2% gain

WXGA+ (1440x900) vs. XGA+ (1152x864) = 23.2% gain

WSXGA+ (1680x1050) vs. SXGA+ (1440x1050) = 14.3% gain

WUSXGA (1920x1200) vs. UGA (1600x1200) = 16.7% gain
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,365
703
This subject has been debated ad nauseam in many threads such as this one. You'll get opinions on both sides. It all boils down to what you like. I prefer widescreen, but there are those who don't.
 

194567

Suspended
Jun 16, 2008
302
0
most of the time the resolution is higher, they are a lot cheaper too. (at least if you buy from dell)
 

O. Frabjous-Dey

macrumors regular
Dec 6, 2006
131
0
Soon to be phased out by cubical 3D monitors. Then someone will start making them longer instead of taller and wider and we'll all argue about it on the Internet.
 

mobilehaathi

macrumors G3
Aug 19, 2008
9,347
6,218
The Anthropocene
I like them for productivity. Multiple terminals/emacs windows/webpages up side by side.....add in spaces on the Mac or multiple desktops on Linux boxes and my productivity grows significantly.
 

tsice19

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2008
703
0
No point. It's just the way technology is going.

Most TVs are widescreen, most computers are widescreen, etc; etc;
 

stainlessliquid

macrumors 68000
Sep 22, 2006
1,625
0
What games have trouble with widescreen? Every new game that comes out must support widescreen if it wants the "gaming for windows" certification. Old games had shady widescreen support but thats in the past. Any good widescreen monitor will also have a "scale to fit" option which will keep the proportions of a 4:3 resolution when playing a game that doesnt have a widescreen mode (so it letterboxes the screen on the sides). I cant imagine anyone preferring 4:3 gaming over widescreen, using 4:3 is like looking through a tube, using widescreen gives your peripheral vision back.

Youre not "supposed" to maximize things like browser windows on a widescreen monitor. Theres no point. Widescreen allows you to adjust the size of the window so its at a normal 4:3 size while having plenty of room to access your desktop or other windows on the side. Everything is much more organized.

Its vastly supperior to 4:3 for computer work. Windows dont have to be tall, vertical scrolling is just a scroll wheel away, but having more horizontal space allows for a better workflow because its so much easier to layer windows.
 

alphaod

macrumors Core
Feb 9, 2008
22,071
1,125
NYC
The point? Widescreen gives you more space.

WXGA (1280x800) vs. XGA (1024x768) = 23.2% gain

WXGA+ (1440x900) vs. XGA+ (1152x864) = 23.2% gain

WSXGA+ (1680x1050) vs. SXGA+ (1440x1050) = 14.3% gain

WUSXGA (1920x1200) vs. UGA (1600x1200) = 16.7% gain
That's not a good comparison since your comparing, typically bigger screens with smaller screens.

WXGA is like 15" and XGA is only 13"
WXGA+ is like 19" and XGA+ is only 15"
WSXGA+ is like 20" and SXGA+ is only 19"
WUXGA is like 24" and UXGA is only 20"

And these are typical sizes, not laptop screen sizes.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
41
When you are writing, it is nice to have a taller monitor rather than a wider monitor so you can see the full length of the page.

This is a weird situation in that it seemed like older Titanium powerbooks with less screen resolution gave me a fuller on page screen for scrolling.

It also is why I bumped from a 20 inch Apple Display to a 23" inch... I can see the whole page on the 23" but not the 20"...

Also the reason I like my 12" powerbook over a macbook screen 13.3" screen... actually gives me a taller screensize again.
 

tri3limited

macrumors 6502
Jun 5, 2008
379
0
London
Interestingly enough... and despite many people saying otherwise, I'm pretty sure most people run their web browsers maximized on all larger screens out of habit.

I for one always have the web in full view as it gives me a larger area to view over, ad when it comes to switching to another program hidden behind I simply Expose the bad boy up or, as I'm doing a lot more these days, switching Spaces (how can people say it's a pointless feature!! Setup keyboard shortcuts and it can shave wasted hours off of your life!!).

All in all, widescreen is essentially a larger desk... Few people have perfectly square desks as it's impractical. Screens are similar!

Also, with the eye thing, unless the user has a sight problem conservatively speaking the human eye has a 60 degree vertical viewing angle and a 120 degree horizontal viewing angle (hence two eyes) so therefore it is more than logical for wide screens.
 

nufanec

macrumors regular
Sep 10, 2005
185
5
That's not a good comparison since your comparing, typically bigger screens with smaller screens.

WXGA is like 15" and XGA is only 13"
WXGA+ is like 19" and XGA+ is only 15"
WSXGA+ is like 20" and SXGA+ is only 19"
WUXGA is like 24" and UXGA is only 20"

And these are typical sizes, not laptop screen sizes.
Thats a load of crap. There is no correlation other than that larger screens tend to have a higher resolution. Hence, my 15" 4:3 Apple Studio Display XGA, the 17" version was SXGA.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
41
Thats a load of crap. There is no correlation other than that larger screens tend to have a higher resolution. Hence, my 15" 4:3 Apple Studio Display XGA, the 17" version was SXGA.
Actually I went that route too, for height and the 17" was better for length of the page than the 15" and also, better than the aluminum 20". I just worked my way up the line to the 23". Also,zooming in or out on a higher res screen in the old Tibook days did NOT fiix the problem... I just had to keep on buying.

but this may not be what the OP was referring to. I need to see the whole written page on the screen.