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Thread: Preferred aspect ratio and screen resolutions?

  1. #21

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    2560X1600: I have three HP ZR30Ws hooked up to my Lenovo ThinkPad W520 and 2X W510.

    Gives me a distinct advantage in the game I play occasionally on Windows 7 / 10: Age of Empires II. A lot less scrolling around the map.

  2. #22

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    For me, a 16:9 display is fine for watching TV from across the room, but I can't stand it on a computer monitor viewed up close. The extra visual information it puts in my peripheral vision is distracting and makes it difficult to focus on my work. Plus with programs and web sites that take up the full width, you end up with loooong lines of text that take too much eye and head movement to read. I tried to cope by choosing a dark background and resizing the program window to only take up the center of the image, but I soon decided to just switch back to my old 5:4 aspect ratio (1280x1024) display, which instantly made me much more comfortable.

    And now there are laptops which clearly look like they were designed to accommodate a 16:10 display, but come with a 16:9 display and just have the extra vertical height blanked off with the bezel. What's the deal with that? Does nobody make 16:10 LCDs anymore?


  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by vwestlife View Post
    And now there are laptops which clearly look like they were designed to accommodate a 16:10 display, but come with a 16:9 display and just have the extra vertical height blanked off with the bezel. What's the deal with that? Does nobody make 16:10 LCDs anymore?
    Agreed, that's a huge pet peeve of mine. I like 16x10 a lot (I still do a LOT of stuff on a 1280x800 laptop), you don't notice the letterboxing when watching 16x9 video but the extra vertical room and more evenly distributed display area really helps make things less cramped. I sometimes stack a 5x4 1280x1024 monitor *above* the laptop for an effective portrait resolution of 1280x1824. This works *great* for e.g. editing an Ableton Live project with a ton of tracks that are arranged vertically, without sacrificing horizontal res.

    My office workstation has two 1280x1024 monitors and a 1680x1050 in a row for effectively 4240x10xx. But because they're separate displays, I can maximize windows on each head or run independent virtual desktops, which I find more convenient than trying to swish non-maximized windows around a super-wide panel.

    Basically for me it depends on the use, but I hate how we've all been forced into 16x9 with a limited vertical area because the industry wanted to cheap out & use the same panels for "TVs."

    Somebody make little square panels that can snap together on all four sides & automatically span the display in the right order, please?

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    I think that it's odd that a book or sheet of letter paper is taller than it is wide, but we seem to go the other way with displays.
    Not always.. I'm afraid that we might be headed back that direction with all those people taking portrait videos on their phones...

    Personally I prefer widescreen displays... I work with spreadsheets a lot and my work machine is a laptop (surface), so it's just more optimal (4:3 laptops were miserable oversized behemoths). Of course, I will use 4:3 on retro computers because that's the native screen format and would never use a widescreen on them, but that's just because I prefer to use display sizes that best represent the software made for it. Although, I do prefer LCD's to CRT's, but primarily because of space considerations and my poor eyes have grown accustomed to IPS displays.
    Retro PC's: Apple IIe/II+, Atari 800, Atari 520STFM, Commodore 64, Commodore Amiga 3000, IBM PS/1 2121-B82, TI-99/4A, TRS-80 Model 4 GA, Kaypro 2/84 (Not working )

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by vwestlife View Post
    And now there are laptops which clearly look like they were designed to accommodate a 16:10 display, but come with a 16:9 display and just have the extra vertical height blanked off with the bezel. What's the deal with that? Does nobody make 16:10 LCDs anymore?
    16:10 was better... but I can see why they'd move to 16:9, just to have consistency across displays and devices. It was so much easier when everything was 4:3 and you didn't have to try to figure out which resolution was best for which game. 4:3 is gone, so lets at least move to one consistent size and stop screwing with it... At least now we have 16:9...

    Oh, wait.. no we don't.. because phones are now 18:9 (2:1) or 18.5:9 or....

    sigh...
    Retro PC's: Apple IIe/II+, Atari 800, Atari 520STFM, Commodore 64, Commodore Amiga 3000, IBM PS/1 2121-B82, TI-99/4A, TRS-80 Model 4 GA, Kaypro 2/84 (Not working )

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by ngtwolf View Post
    4:3 is gone
    The iPad still has a 4:3 display, and some Chromebooks have a 3:2 display:


  7. #27
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    I'm guessing a lot of you aren't fans of chicklet keyboards either. I've wondered before if you could do decent business making "throwback" laptops using salvaged displays & keyboards from industrial cast-offs. Pick something like an Inspiron 600m which has a good keyboard and a 1400x1050 display (and are getting thrown away by the boatload by businesses), nick the keyboard & panel, replace the CCFL backlight with an LED one, and build a nice modern laptop around them.



    Obviously it'd be a niche product, and you'd be limited in how many you could produce, but I'd think there'd be some market for them.

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by xjas View Post
    I've wondered before if you could do decent business making "throwback" laptops using salvaged displays & keyboards from industrial cast-offs.
    There is a group of enthusiasts putting new components into old ThinkPads, creating new unofficial models like the ThinkPad X62:

    https://geoff.greer.fm/2017/07/16/thinkpad-x62/


  9. #29
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    I use whatever is native to the screen I'm using (for an LCD). For a CRT it scales as follows:
    15" 832x624 (I find Apple's unusual resolution to actually be perfect for 15" screens so I add the timings in for it manually on Windows)
    17" 1024x768
    19" 1280x960 (using 1280x1024 on a 4:3 screen is only valid if you want to lower the horizontal size a little, since that aspect isn't actually 4:3, but 5:4).

    My desktop however is a 27" IPS LCD which is 2560x1440, my Thinkpad is 1920x1080, and my Toshiba is 1368x768. I prefer 16:9 because for word processing I can have two pages facing side by side, but this only works best on the larger screens.
    IBM PS/2 Model 25, NEC V30 8MHz, 640KB RAM, ATI VGA Wonder XL, 2GB SSD, Ethernet, DR DOS 6/GeOS, Xircom PE3 Ethernet

  10. #30
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    I don't think there was anything wrong with 4:3 (or '4:3ish' ratios like 5:4) but equally it doesn't bother me to use a 16:9 display.

    Obviously the ideal resolution is partly based on the screen size but I also think it depends on the operating system (and software of the era), with the ideal resolution being one level higher than what might have been considered basic at the time, and anything above that being excessive and resulting in things being too small. Eg around the time of Windows 3.1 & 95, a basic resolution was 640x480, so going to 800x600 is the ideal and going to 1024x768 is too much.

    I have been comfortable with some oddball resolutions in my time though - for a good few years I ran Windows 98 at 1152x864, it seemed to be perfect on the 19" CRT I used at the time.

    I'm not a fan of any sort of scaling to render the operating system larger to compensate for excessively high resolutions, they never seem to look quite right.

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