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What are pixels? Is the retina worth it? It can't even run at its native resolution!

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
Hey guys, I just bought my rmbp 13 and here's the thing! I don't know jack **** about pixels or anything as such and I'll be using this laptop for intense video and photo editing (which I'm learning) okay so the rmpb has a native resolution of 2560 x 1800 but runs at 1280 x 900 that's what I have understood after reading but my question here is did I just waste money buying a retina macbook pro for nothing I mean the display can't even run at its fullest? So what's the difference between that and the non retina one? Overall what was the point of it? Should have I just purchased a Windows laptop that has a resolution of 1920x 1080?which is high definition right? So is the rmbp high definition or not?

I'm really sorry I know this is a stupid post but If someone could explain me the whole concept of pixels and why the retina runs at a lower resolution than its capacity? Moreover is it worth the money? I paid 1370 $ for the 256 gb 2014 model and now I'm thinking I could have bought 2 Windows laptops in that much! Sorry again I'm really ignorant in this subject and am thinking whether I should return the laptop instead.

A little help would be really appreciated.
Thanks guys :)

PS( also I read that the higher you increase the pixels the icons and font sizes decrease so why would anyone do that?)
 

556fmjoe

macrumors 68020
Apr 19, 2014
2,055
1,951
Put simply, a pixel is a dot of color. Your display is made up of lots and lots of these dots. If these dots are close together, the image appears sharper. If they are farther away, your eye can start to tell a difference and the image will appear fuzzy with rougher edges.

Screen resolutions such as 1024x768, 1280x720, etc tell you the number of pixels in the display. For a given size screen, the higher the number, the more pixels. More pixels means they are packed in closer together, which means a sharper display. Not all software is written to take advantage of high resolution displays, which is why some computers deliberately run at lower resolutions than they are capable of.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
Put simply, a pixel is a dot of color. Your display is made up of lots and lots of these dots. If these dots are close together, the image appears sharper. If they are farther away, your eye can start to tell a difference and the image will appear fuzzy with rougher edges.

Screen resolutions such as 1024x768, 1280x720, etc tell you the number of pixels in the display. For a given size screen, the higher the number, the more pixels. More pixels means they are packed in closer together, which means a sharper display. Not all software is written to take advantage of high resolution displays, which is why some computers deliberately run at lower resolutions than they are capable of.

Hey thanks for replying! Well my current dell inspiron laptop has a resolution of 1368 x 788 which seems higher compared to the retina macbook pro so are you trying to say that I paid a bomb for nothing? And the resolution of the rmbp will be worse than my Dell? What is the retina display exactly? The whole concept of it?
 

awests

macrumors regular
Jul 24, 2014
172
10
Bay Area, CA
Hey thanks for replying! Well my current dell inspiron laptop has a resolution of 1368 x 788 which seems higher compared to the retina macbook pro so are you trying to say that I paid a bomb for nothing? And the resolution of the rmbp will be worse than my Dell? What is the retina display exactly? The whole concept of it?

What OSX does with the retina display is it can render the operating system at different scalars. Go to display settings and mess around with the different resolutions for the display. You can enable the software to run at the resolution of the display where everything is rendered at 1x, but you will notice everything is smaller and a little more difficult to see.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
What OSX does with the retina display is it can render the operating system at different scalars. Go to display settings and mess around with the different resolutions for the display. You can enable the software to run at the resolution of the display where everything is rendered at 1x, but you will notice everything is smaller and a little more difficult to see.

If it's smaller than what's the point? What's the point of the retina display only in the first place?
 

awests

macrumors regular
Jul 24, 2014
172
10
Bay Area, CA
If it's smaller than what's the point? What's the point of the retina display only in the first place?

The point of the retina display is to make everything look crisper and clearer. When used for video editing, you can show actual 1080p video while still having room on your screen for other software elements (timelines, lists, etc.).

It is the same reason for that phone displays have been increasing in pixel density.
 

556fmjoe

macrumors 68020
Apr 19, 2014
2,055
1,951
If it's smaller than what's the point? What's the point of the retina display only in the first place?

Not every application will render properly in high resolution. OS X has no problem with it, but they don't know what kind of applications you will use, so they pick a default that should work with all of them.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
Not every application will render properly in high resolution. OS X has no problem with it, but they don't know what kind of applications you will use, so they pick a default that should work with all of them.

Is there a way to get the full 2560 x 1600 resolution?

The point of the retina display is to make everything look crisper and clearer. When used for video editing, you can show actual 1080p video while still having room on your screen for other software elements (timelines, lists, etc.).

It is the same reason for that phone displays have been increasing in pixel density.

Is there a way to increase the font size and keep the resolution high at the same time? And suppose if I attach my computer to an external monitor then at what resolution does it play?
 

awests

macrumors regular
Jul 24, 2014
172
10
Bay Area, CA
Is there a way to get the full 2560 x 1600 resolution?



Is there a way to increase the font size and keep the resolution high at the same time? And suppose if I attach my computer to an external monitor then at what resolution does it play?

1. Yes there is a way to get the full resolution, go into the display settings and change it to the maximum resolution.

2. The resolution of the display won't change, but the way the OS renders each pixel will. I'm not sure if you can adjust it the way you are describing, but it can't hurt to play around with the display settings and the accessibility settings (for font size). The external monitor will run at its native resolution (a 1920x1080 monitor will normally run at 1920x1080 unless you change the settings in system preferences).
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
1. Yes there is a way to get the full resolution, go into the display settings and change it to the maximum resolution.

2. The resolution of the display won't change, but the way the OS renders each pixel will. I'm not sure if you can adjust it the way you are describing, but it can't hurt to play around with the display settings and the accessibility settings (for font size). The external monitor will run at its native resolution (a 1920x1080 monitor will normally run at 1920x1080 unless you change the settings in system preferences).

Can fiddling around with the resolution cause damage to the computer in anyway? Like using higher resolution. Will it affect the cpu gpu battery etc? Is it harmful?
 

capathy21

macrumors 65816
Jun 16, 2014
1,375
550
Houston, Texas
Can fiddling around with the resolution cause damage to the computer in anyway? Like using higher resolution. Will it affect the cpu gpu battery etc? Is it harmful?

It may affect battery life but it won't harm anything.

Here is how retina works. Even though the display emulates 1280x800, everything is super sharp since there are 4 pixels packed into a spot where one used to be. If you compare it to your old display of 1366x768, you will see how much sharper everything is, how text is easier to read, how colors are more accurate etc. So no retina is not a waste at all. I am shocked you cannot see the huge difference in overall quality of display between the two. You can scale it to show a higher resolution if you want to, but everything will appear smaller.
 

TallGuyGT

macrumors 6502
Aug 8, 2011
306
490
NYC
There seems to be a lot of confusion about the way Retina displays work. Your Mac is using all 2560 x 1800 pixels.

A non-retina 13" Mac is running 1280 x 900 at 72 dpi. A retina 13" mac is running 2560 x 1800 at 144 dpi (1280 x 900 equivalent). So text and graphics appear the same size at default settings, but the retina display is much sharper.

You can set your Mac to run at higher equivalent resolutions, and they are scaled to use the full 2560 x 1800 pixels. The Apple scaling algorithms are very effective and keep text super sharp while doing a good job with 2x graphics assets.

The exceptions are programs that have not been upgraded to support the retina display - they will render at 72 dpi and seem blurry by comparison. Also, full-screen games can set different resolutions and are scaled.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
It may affect battery life but it won't harm anything.

Here is how retina works. Even though the display emulates 1280x800, everything is super sharp since there are 4 pixels packed into a spot where one used to be. If you compare it to your old display of 1366x768, you will see how much sharper everything is, how text is easier to read, how colors are more accurate etc. So no retina is not a waste at all. I am shocked you cannot see the huge difference in overall quality of display between the two. You can scale it to show a higher resolution if you want to, but everything will appear smaller.
Thanks I'll definitely do that, haven't compared the displays simultaneously . if that's true shouldn't the resolution be 4 times of 1280 x 800? At a higher resolution if everything appears small is is possible to increase the size?

There seems to be a lot of confusion about the way Retina displays work. Your Mac is using all 2560 x 1800 pixels.

A non-retina 13" Mac is running 1280 x 900 at 72 dpi. A retina 13" mac is running 2560 x 1800 at 144 dpi (1280 x 900 equivalent). So text and graphics appear the same size at default settings, but the retina display is much sharper.

You can set your Mac to run at higher equivalent resolutions, and they are scaled to use the full 2560 x 1800 pixels. The Apple scaling algorithms are very effective and keep text super sharp while doing a good job with 2x graphics assets.

The exceptions are programs that have not been upgraded to support the retina display - they will render at 72 dpi and seem blurry by comparison. Also, full-screen games can set different resolutions and are scaled.
Full screen games? Can you even game on a Mac? It apparently destroys the chipset doesn't it? I
 

snaky69

macrumors 603
Mar 14, 2008
5,904
484
Thanks I'll definitely do that, haven't compared the displays simultaneously . if that's true shouldn't the resolution be 4 times of 1280 x 800? At a higher resolution if everything appears small is is possible to increase the size?


Full screen games? Can you even game on a Mac? It apparently destroys the chipset doesn't it? I

2x2 = 4.

The display resolution you are using (by default) is 1280x800. Meaning there are 1280 horizontal pixels by 800 vertical pixels. Now since the display has a 2560x1600 panel, it means that for every 1 pixel of resolution, you have 2 physical pixels being used. So in effect, you are using 4 times more pixels to display the image. This results in an image that is extremely sharp/crisp.

Since the panel itself has so many pixels, you can scale the resolution up to it's native resolution. UI elements will appear smaller, true, but you'll be able to fit more information on the screen at any one time. That's the whole point of retina.
 

gochi

macrumors 6502
Mar 31, 2011
289
1
from what ive seen in stores the screen is gorgeous

but there are windows laptops with better pixel res

i dont understand y anyone would purchase a retina

id opt for a regular macbook
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
lolwat?! xD
gaming destroy the chipset?! nonsense! where did you get that idea?! O-o
I have heard almost everyone saying that a mac is not meant for gaming!

from what ive seen in stores the screen is gorgeous

but there are windows laptops with better pixel res

i dont understand y anyone would purchase a retina

id opt for a regular macbook
Yeah? Which Windows laptops are you talking about?
 

TechGod

macrumors 68040
Feb 25, 2014
3,179
918
New Zealand
I have heard almost everyone saying that a mac is not meant for gaming!


Yeah? Which Windows laptops are you talking about?

There is one with a three hour battery life. Called Razer Blade

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I have heard almost everyone saying that a mac is not meant for gaming!


Yeah? Which Windows laptops are you talking about?
They aren't made for gaming but that doesn't mean you can't. "Destroys the chip" what nonsense.
 

poiihy

macrumors 68020
Aug 22, 2014
2,295
60
There is one with a three hour battery life. Called Razer Blade

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They aren't made for gaming but that doesn't mean you can't. "Destroys the chip" what nonsense.

They aren't "made" specifically for anything, just like (almost) any other pc out there. You do what you want.
 

Sirmausalot

macrumors 65816
Sep 1, 2007
1,072
275
The new version of the adobe suite, coming out this fall, takes advantage of the high resolution retina display. That said, heavy video or photo editing is not best done on a 13" screen. You'll want an external monitor (or two).

I have comparison shopped for a windows notebook comparable to the rMBP 15" with DGPU for video editing. I didn't find anything with the components, specs and build quality that was appreciably less expensive.

My wife has one of those cheap windows notebooks. They are fine for certain tasks, but for video editing, you need to spend the coin.
 

MartinAppleGuy

macrumors 68020
Sep 27, 2013
2,246
887
Thanks I'll definitely do that, haven't compared the displays simultaneously . if that's true shouldn't the resolution be 4 times of 1280 x 800? At a higher resolution if everything appears small is is possible to increase the size?


Full screen games? Can you even game on a Mac? It apparently destroys the chipset doesn't it? I

Gaming wise, it depends on your GPU. I run almost all games maxed out on my iMac with my 750m GPU (1GB GDDR5 VRAM). If you have a 13" MBPr, you won't be playing the highest end games, but with the 15" models you would be fine.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
Gaming wise, it depends on your GPU. I run almost all games maxed out on my iMac with my 750m GPU (1GB GDDR5 VRAM). If you have a 13" MBPr, you won't be playing the highest end games, but with the 15" models you would be fine.
Why would I even game from my macbook? I own a playstation 4 and so does everyone else, you game on a console that's meant for gaming!
 

MartinAppleGuy

macrumors 68020
Sep 27, 2013
2,246
887
Why would I even game from my macbook? I own a playstation 4 and so does everyone else, you game on a console that's meant for gaming!

That's not what you asked though (you asked "can you even game on a mac?"). A Mac can game. Whether you choose to game on a console or a computer, that is your personal preference. The fact of the matter is Mac's (at least ones with the dedicated GPU's) can game very well.

----------

so does everyone else

While my personal preference in terms of console gaming would be the PS4 over the Xbox One, it is just silly to say that "everyone" prefers gaming on that over another console/PC/Mac.

There is a lot of games that come out of PC/Mac that don't come to PS4/Xbox (and vis versa) as well as the extra ability to mod games makes having both a console and a gaming computer (be it a Mac or a PC) the best of both worlds. Your Macbook Pro would not be as good as your PS4, but high end iMacs outperform a PS4 and allow for much more possibilities.
 

macfreak101

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2012
163
0
That's not what you asked though (you asked "can you even game on a mac?"). A Mac can game. Whether you choose to game on a console or a computer, that is your personal preference. The fact of the matter is Mac's (at least ones with the dedicated GPU's) can game.

Sorry I forgot what I had said :p That's true, thanks a lot man.
Btw I have read horror stories of the coating of the screen of the rmbp comes out easily? Like if you use a cloth and water and rub it, it comes out? And that the keyboard leaves imprints on the screen which do not come out! Is that true!!!? Is the quality that bad! I'm shocked! It's such an expensive computer and the quality of apple can't be so bad! Moreover have you experienced anything as such?
 
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