The Problem with a 2x Retina Display on the iPad - The Internet.

Discussion in 'iPad' started by hifoo45, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. hifoo45 macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2010
    I keep reading people having a massive fit about not having a retina display on the iPad. If you think about there is a pretty obvious reason, the internet. Sites are not designed for a 2x iPad, it's designed at the standard of the minimum "normal home user" display, 1024x768.

    If apple brought out a 2x iPad that would mean it would 2048x1536 on the same 10" display, yikes. iOS is designed to crop sites to fit it's screen, meaning almost every site on the web would have to get blown up nearly 200% to fit that resolution. Text will scale fine but any image will turn to crud. If you want to see what this may look at, hit command + "+" a couple times on any site and watch as the images turn into mud. This is what the iPad would do.

    iPhone 4 display works wonders because it is still below the 1024 threshold so every site you look at in the default safari crop is decreased in size already. Once you have a iPad over 1024 you are only ruining the images. Apple usually does not intend to show off ugliness and this would do it to every site on the web.

    I made a quick mock up of what I am talking about, unless I'm missing something here, I see this as the main reason not to go retina on the iPad. be sure to view at 100%, descriptions at the bottom.
  2. phyrexia macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2010
    Will blowing up an image like that when the screen res goes up by like that change what the image looks like? I don't understand your logic. An image viewed at 1:1 on an iPad would look identical to the same image at 2:1 on a RetinaPad.

    There are about a billion threads about this...
  3. saiyan macrumors member

    Aug 5, 2010
    Your example is about zooming image on a display without increasing pixel density. Of course the image would look bad when zoomed.

    If you do a 2x zoom of an image on a 2048x1536 lcd display that has the same physical size (9.7 inch) as the current iPad display, the image would simply be displayed as if it is shown at its original size on a 1024x768 display. Remember that the potential Retina like display will double the resolution without increasing the physical size of the display (ex doubling pixel density).
  4. Mitchrapp macrumors 6502a

    Apr 2, 2010
    Does it really matter, Apple isn't adding it anyway.
  5. phyrexia macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2010
    To me the fact that so many people cannot understand that the viewing experience would not degrade 'matters'

    It will come eventually, anyway.
  6. Goldfrapp macrumors 601


    Jul 31, 2005
    Epic. Fail.
  7. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Feb 6, 2009
    Open a site on your iPad and scale it to twice it's original size. This is the scaling factor that would be occurring on a retina display, only in a smaller physical space and able to see the whole page. Does it look terrible? I bet not.

    Safari on iOS is able to scale the whole page with pretty high quality to almost any factor, from way bigger than originally intended to way smaller. I don't think that this will be a problem.
  8. Mr. Incredible macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2010
    Southern California
    Will the iPad 2 get a 1920 x 1080 resolution? That would be perfect.
  9. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Feb 6, 2009
    No, it's really not likely to go from a 4:3 aspect ratio to a 16:9 ratio. If it's going to increase, it will probably double exactly in each dimension.
  10. colmaclean macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    No, it would be rubbish.
  11. anjinha macrumors 604


    Oct 21, 2006
    San Francisco, CA
    "This, Jen, is the Internet."

    Sorry, I had to. :D:p
  12. Eso macrumors 68000


    Aug 14, 2008
    Ah... make this poor guy never come back, lol.
  13. iPhoneCollector macrumors 6502a


    Nov 30, 2010
  14. HXGuy macrumors 68000

    Mar 25, 2010
    Actually I don't know if that's correct...would it really scale the images or would it mor likely leave them at their native resolution resulting in much smaller pictures?

    Think about what happens when you use an LCD monitor with 1024x768 resolution vs one with 2560x1440. The images on the bigger monitor do not get simply can fit more of a website etc on the screen, but the images itself actually are smaller than if you were viewing the same website on smaller monitor. I think the same would happen on the iPad.
  15. MSlaw macrumors regular

    Aug 11, 2010
  16. vrDrew macrumors 65816

    Jan 31, 2010
    Midlife, Midwest
    There are probably a half dozen reasons why the next generation iPad is unlikely to have a "Retina" display. I know this disappoints a lot of people - but there it is.

    For one thing, effectively doubling the iPads pixel density would have an extremely limited effect on the actual viewing experience. Its one thing to put it on an iPhone - which has tiny text, read from a distance of 14" or so. Its quite another to put it on the iPad, which has "normal" sized text, which you typically read from 18 - 20". Most people's eyes simply cannot distinguish pixels at that (albeit) slightly greater distance.

    Secondly, there is the issue of filesize and bandwidth. Doubling the display resolution would (at least theoretically) quadruple the size of video files that could take advantage of the new, higher resolution. Instead of being able to store a half dozen full-length movies on your iPad - you'd be looking at one or two. And then there is the much longer time required to upload them - either via iTunes synch or Airplay/Airvideo.

    Then there is the matter of battery life/graphics performance. Four times the pixels probably means four times the workload on the GPU. At this juncture, it probably makes more sense for Apple to use improved processor performance to make movies and graphics flow smoother and faster - rather than jerkier and slower. And, again, four times the pixels is going to place at least some additional burden on the battery.

    Lastly, there is the issue of fragmentation, and additional complications for iPad app developers. No doubt there are all sorts of workarounds that would allow existing Apps to be ported to a higher-resolution display. But the bottom line is it would require at least some reworking of every App in the store. Apple is doing its best (imperfectly at times) to make things easy for App developers.

    This is not to say that AT SOME POINT we may start seeing "Retina" class displays on the iPad. Maybe in three to five years, once the manufacturing capability is in place. Once GPU and CPU performance, battery life, and a few other things have moved forward - it will make sense. But not now. It would simply cost too much, and provide too little real benefit to the vast majority of potential (and existing) iPad owners.
  17. shakeman0 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 20, 2009
    I think I understand what the OP is saying. Even if the iPad had a retina display the content on the web wouldn't be high enough resolution to take advantage of it. Leaving it looking the same as an iPad without retina.
  18. colmaclean macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    No, the OP was saying that images would "turn to crud" on a retina display. So he's wrong, but your misinterpretation of his post is right. :)
  19. Runt888 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 17, 2008
    I couldn't disagree more with this - I find it very easy to see pixels on the iPad. I use mine as an e-reader, so a retina display is the main reason why I would upgrade. And my vision is far from perfect.

    A retina display would be more beneficial for text rendering than images and video. Videos that are compressed well look great on the current screen - no one is forcing you to re-encode your videos at a higher resolution.

    I see this argument all the time on this forum. There is not a linear relationship between resolution and GPU workload. Yes, increasing the resolution will increase the workload, but other parts of the system represent a much greater drain on the battery (ie, screen backlight). Add in an improved, more efficient GPU and it's very possible that the increased battery drain will be negligible.

    No, it wouldn't require any reworking. Any old apps would work and look exactly the same as they do now.

    Basically, I disagree with everything you've said. In my opinion, there are two things that are holding Apple back from putting in a retina display:
    1. The screens are too expensive to maintain the current price points.
    2. Apple wants to save it for a later update.
  20. hifoo45, Feb 9, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011

    hifoo45 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2010

    Actually I'm saying the retina screen of a 2x iPad would have to enlarge all web images to fit the physical space of the 10" screen. Any site will look great at it's intended size on a retina but the higher dpi will make everything optically smaller on the display. Safari on iOS is designed to crop sites at their maximum width which would cause a 980px site needing to fill a 1536px space, which only causes everything to enlarge. Text can scale but images on site can not without quality loss.

    Just think, why have all apps needed to be redesigned at a 2x resolution for iPhone 4? Retina doesn't magically resize things, it optically makes everything smaller on screen because of the density. So content (images) need to be 2x in pixel size to look perfect on the retina display. Sure, I'm all for more pixels, but iOS browsing is not the same as desktop browsing, it is intended to fill the space of the browser, meaning all sites will need to be enlarge to make up for the extra pixels. And once you move passed 1024 web standards sites will have to follow the redesigning at 2x or they will just be software enlarged through safari...

    A 660x660 pixel image on the current iPad will show take up 5x5" on the display, but the same image will only physically be 2.5x2.5" on a retina ipad. To actually make that as legible and take up the intended viewing size (5x5") it would need to be designed at 1320x1320. So unless the world wants to redesign every site, to get that 660x660 image to be 5x5" on a retina display it would be enlarged through safari only causing quality loss.
  21. neutrino23 macrumors 68000

    Feb 14, 2003
    SF Bay area
    Think of it this way. Photograph a scene with a 3MP camera and then photograph the same scene with a 12MP camera. Now print both images on 8x10 paper and view them side by side. This is the effect of doubling the resolution on the iPad. Everything will be the same size. Text will be sharper. Images that have more content will be sharper. Low resolution images will look exactly the same in both cases.
  22. hifoo45 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2010
    That's exactly my point. The internet is designed at your "3MP photo" not the 12, so the retina display only show off the lower quality rather than the crispness, because the 3MP will need to blow up to fit the extra pixels.
  23. LoganT macrumors 68020

    Jan 9, 2007
    So because the web is lagging behind (though evidence provided in this thread proves otherwise) Apple should never put a high resolution screen on the iPad?
  24. hifoo45 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2010
    I never said never, I said there is a problem right now. Maybe in 3 years when web standards bump passed 1024 it will be reasonable, and especially by then it may be realistic that a 10" display at 2048x1536 will be able to fit in the realm of $500. I don't get how people think thats possible.
  25. P Mentior macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2008
    I don't think you are getting the effect of doubling the resolution will have on pictures so try this to help.

    1. On a piece of paper draw a square.
    2. Now draw a line vertically down the center and another horizontally across the center.

    You should now have a picture of a square split into 4 equal smaller squares.

    Now lets pretend that these four squares are four pixels in the current iPad

    3. Now split the 4 squares again like in step 2.

    You should now have grid of four squares by four squares.

    This is like a iPad with a retina display. As you can see any image that is displayed on the current iPad can be displayed on the retinal display and look identical as 1 pixel on the old can be seen a 4 pixels on the new.

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