There is no 300dpi limit for a "Retina" display

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by kre62, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. kre62 macrumors 68000

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    #1
    I know this has been said, but it bears repeating.

    I've been seeing a ton of posts about the so-called 300dpi limit for a display to be retina. Many of these have been recently with talk of a larger screen iPhone. Well, hate to disappoint, but theres no such thing as a 300dpi limit for retina. It doesnt, and never did, exist.

    In the iPhone 4 keynote last year, which you can go watch right now, Steve said that if you hold a device the size of the iPhone AT 12 INCHES from your face, the eye will not distinguish pixels past 300DPI. This is a 3.5' display held 12 inches from your face (And even that claim was challenged)

    The calculation for "Retina" depens on pixel density, screen size, and distance from face.

    If the iPhone 5 has a 4" display, it'll be assumed that you'll hold it 14-16" from your face, thus the DPI count can be lower (270-280) and still be Retina.

    Hope that helps.
     
  2. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

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    #2
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_1_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.18 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile/7E18 Safari/528.16)

    Exactly. "Retina Display" is just a term made up by Apple marketing. It means whatever the heck they want it to mean.
     
  3. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

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  4. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #4
  5. pyro008 macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Well derp, of course you can change the distance and change the pixel density required, but people are going based off the same distance as the iphone4. 1ppi is "retina" from far enough away.
     
  6. kre62 thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #6
    Yeah all great and good. But lately theres been a ton of posts from people who dont get it. So trying to clear the air.
     
  7. Yellowstone2012 macrumors regular

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    #7
    You forgot the most import factor: Current Pixel size. Example: the Pixels on the iMac (20") are small enough that to shrink them any farther would produce a pixel-less display from a distance. If viewed really close (eyes on the screen) then you may see pixels.

    Again, the "retina" limit depends on how small the pixels already are.
     
  8. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

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    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_1_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.18 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile/7E18 Safari/528.16)

    PPI is a measure of pixel size. Higher PPI = smaller pixels.
     
  9. sentinelsx macrumors 68010

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    #9
    All I know is I havent found a single phone compared to iPhone 4 that doesn't make me zoom text and doesnt cause a huge frustration when browsing. That retina may be mumbo jumbo (I used to believe it was just hype a long while ago) but if the huge screen is as hard to read as all other phones then I prefer this hyped up display.
     
  10. Merkie macrumors 68020

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    #10
    You just described PPI :confused:?
     
  11. kre62 thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #11
    That has nothing to do with this topic. This is about people thinking a display with less than 300ppi is not retina.
     
  12. sentinelsx macrumors 68010

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    #12
    It's a marketing term from Apple. They can revise it anytime they feel like. In other words, I feel it is mostly a made up buzzword to entice customers.

    I was just mentioning despite all this, the display does hold true to the description though. Sorry for trailing in the wrong direction :p
     
  13. Certinfy macrumors 6502a

    Certinfy

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    #13
    But surely if they increase the screen size despite them still calling it a retina display people are going to notice the resolution is no where as good as the iPhone 4's?
     
  14. JetBlack7 macrumors 68020

    JetBlack7

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    #14
    If they want to mantain the image clarity and "retina display" that the current iphone has, then I think if they make a bigger screen, they would have to elevate the PPI in the screen.
     
  15. ped, Jul 31, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2011

    ped macrumors regular

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    #15
    Doubtful. An iPad is a 10" screen and is about the same resolution as an iPhone 4 and I and no one else I know who has an iPad is complaining about the resolution. It looks awesome (for an LCD).
     
  16. kre62 thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #16
    Seeing more and more questions on this, so hoping to get the word out.
     
  17. ArztMac macrumors regular

    ArztMac

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    #17
    Well, depends on what you use it for. I have a ton of my textbooks loaded onto my iPad, and it can get quite cumbersome to read the pages as you would a book because it's just too pixelated. And zooming in & scrolling around the page all the time just doesn't cut it.

    So I actually went out and bought some of the textbooks in hardcover, real pages that I also own as PDFs. It's just easier to read in the long run even though I am dreaming of using my iPad exclusively for studies. But that's not possible with the limitations of the current display.

    I will wait in line for an iPad 3 that could be geared towards professional users, no matter the cost. A speedy iPad with a Retina Display would be awesome, I'd easily pay $2-3000 for it, maybe even more...
     
  18. Reach9 macrumors 68020

    Reach9

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    #18
    Very nice post Kre62, it definitely clears things up.

    So do you think that the iPhone 5 will sport a 4" screen?
     
  19. beamer8912 macrumors 65816

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    #19
    Why would you assume people would hold the phone further away?

    I realize it would have the same effect as the iP4, but why would you bump the screen size and such just to have people hold it further away? You don't have to hold the iP4 unnecessarily close to read it.

    Wouldn't it make more sense to assume the same reading distance, keep the same dpi and make the screen larger. That way the screen actually appears larger. Otherwise it just seems like a waste to increase the screen size when you already have a perfectly good retina 3.5" screen.
     
  20. Alvi macrumors 65816

    Alvi

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    #20
    That's called a Wacom Cintiq connected to a full-size computer
     
  21. fs454 macrumors 65816

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    #21
    The current display is something like 326ppi. If they go with a 3.7 inch display, which is a good amount more real estate without being ridiculously large, it's still probably going to be right around 300ppi on the dot.
     
  22. kre62, Aug 2, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2011

    kre62 thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #22
    If you read and fully comprehend what I'm saying, you'll realize theres no need to hit that number. That number is no more important than 270PPI or 305PPI. That number is not the definition of Retina.
     
  23. fs454 macrumors 65816

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    #23
    There really is no definition of "retina" other than a considerably dense display. I have no doubt apple will try and 1. not make their phone massive, and 2. keep the pixels as small as they can, resulting in a 3.7 inch display over a 4 incher.

    I understand that dropping below 300ppi doesn't do anything, but I guarantee that Apple loves being over that 300 mark and it's likely to stay.
     
  24. ped macrumors regular

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    #24
    I completely disagree - reading PDFs on my iPad is perfect. I have tons of books, including textbooks, and almost never need to zoom in to read them.

    If resolution and PPI was anywhere CLOSE to the issue you guys make it out to be in discussions of OLED vs LCD it would be impossible to do anything useful on the iPad, considering it has the same resolution as a 3.5" iPhone but has about 7 or 8 times the screen area.
     
  25. Statusnone88 macrumors 65816

    Statusnone88

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    #25
    I'd love to see Apple piss away 18 months and another refresh on making the screen size .2 inches larger. Ever hold a Google Nexus S? 4" is exactly what the iPhone 5 is going to be, Apple wouldn't waste their time any other way. Simple as that.
     

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