Linus Torvalds Wants All Laptops to Have 2560x1600 'Reasonable Resolution' Displays

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Broseph86

I can't believe no one has brought this up yet: has anyone stopped to consider WHY all these tablets and phones have ridiculously high resolutions, while laptop resolutions stay about the same, instead of just assuming that laptop manufacturers are retarded?

How far you are from the screen is important. People hold tablets and smart phones right up to their faces and they can therefore see more detail, which is why those devices are better with higher resolutions and pixel densities. You can hold them closer to see the detail. Most laptop screens are still viewed from at least a couple feet away. The further away your eyes are from the screen, the bigger the pixels need to be for you to actually see the detail. Laptop and tablet manufacturers know this, and that is why there is a large disparity in the two resolutions.

With that being said, I still sympathize with what Linus is saying. Higher resolutions can't really hurt, and 1366x768 is pretty pathetic, even in smaller screens. It doesn't give you much desktop space to work with. We really don't need screens pushing 400ppi when your eyes are 2-3 feet away from the screen. I just bought a Vizio Ultrabook and one of the selling points for me was the 1600x900 screen. Not as high as some people would apparently like, but way better than 1366x768 and more than enough for me. (I know there are Ultrabooks with 1080p but this Vizio only set me back $598 and I love it. 128GB SSD too!)

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machew100

Okay, 1920x1080 should only be allowed in 11 inch laptops from now on, that's what I say. Laptops are soooo behind on resolution.

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petrol42

I have a 16" 1080p screen on my Vaio laptop and to me, the 1080p resolution doesn't really give me an advantage since I need to zoom in on a webpage or enlarge something in Photoshop so they can be big enough to see. I wouldn't have to zoom in at all or zoom in much if I had a 1600x900 screen so the effect would be the same regardless of having a 1080p resolution or a 1600x900 screen.

I feel the screen resolution should scale to the size of the monitor. I am typing this on a Lenovo X120e with a 11.6" screen with a 1366x768 resolution and I feel it's perfect for this size screen. If the resolution were any higher, I'd have to constantly zoom in on things to be able to read or see it, just like I have to do on my Vaio with the 1080p screen.

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vrmlbasic

...You're not serious, are you? This is just a more-involved-than-usual trolling, right?

Anything below 1920*1080 does not fit my needs at all. More pixels = more detail and more screen space.

This reminds me of a post on here a while back of a guy who purposefully set his LCD to a sub-native resolution as a crude method of making page layouts (IIRC) on his monitor the same size (at less detail) as their printed equivalents.

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PsychNerd

He has a point. If they can make the google nexus for $400 and have more advanced displays with all the other internal components and still make a profit, then there is no reason that laptop manufactures can not do the same. This has been a complaint of mine for years. The only advance in the past 10 years with displays are response times which have stagnated and LED back lighting. I don't like anything less than 1600x900 in a display and those are only available in 17" laptops. They need to make that in a 13-14" size. There are a few 1920x1080 screens in the 15" range, but not many. IPS displays also need to become more popular and the standard. If they switched everything over at once for more accurate color reproduction, prices would go down quicker because the initial cost would be displaced by all the consumers buying them. Asus has been doing a good job of making some nice IPS displays.

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gatorXXX

"I don't like anything less than 1600x900 in a display and those are only available in 17" laptops."

Not true. I have the Samsung Chronos Series 7 15.6" laptop and its native resolution is 1600x900. Everything else I agree with.

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beteks

But that's the thing, Very few laptops in the 15.6 range have that resolution. I have only seen very few Samsungs and HPs with high resolution displays.

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vrmlbasic

That the Macbook pro has had LED backlit displays for almost 5 years and 1920*1080 resolutions for at least 5 years, while these are new forays for PC laptops by and large, is brutal.

In "defense" of the laptop makers, since they don't share Apple's readiness to put a dedicated GPU (however inadequate it may be) into their products, the Intel integrated HD 4000/3000 GPUs that they're content to rely upon can't handle anything so high as 1920*1080 :(

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Broseph86

Don't want to put a dedicated GPU in a laptop, but hate Intel HD graphics? The solutions is staring the manufacturers in the face: AMD A-series CPUs (or APUs, rather). They don't get enough credit. They don't give you the gaming-level of performance that you get from a dedicated GPU, but they're way more energy efficient than a full GPU, save space, which makes them great for thin and light designs, and way outperform the Intel HD 4000 graphics. Intel's high ends beat AMD's high ends in most benchmarks, but AMDs still give the i3s and some i5s a run for their money, and always outperform in graphics and parallel processing. Like I said, they don't get enough credit.

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jlh304

Intel HD 2500/4000 can do 1920x1600. There are also some with display port that can do up to 2560x1600.

The Intel HD 2000/3000 also has a max resolution of 2560x1600.

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vrmlbasic

If there were an eye-rolling emoticon, it'd be here.

Sure the POS Intel GPUs can push that many pixels...in MS Word (if you're lucky). Anything higher and you're pushing your luck. I'm thinking that their capabilities end with the playing of a 1920*1080 bluray, assuming you're lucky enough to have a computer running on only these Intel GPUS with a 1080 display in the first place.

I'm still snickering over the fact that even games that look like they have pitifully low graphical requirements, like FTL, warn of a lack of support and are likely to not work on Intel HD 4000/3000/below GPUs.

MaximumPC's review of the mighty Nvidia 690 GPU shows it only eking out a paltry 38 FPS in Shogun 2 at 2560*1600 and it couldn't even attempt Metro 2033 at such high resolutions. If Nvidia's mightiest card of today can't even play these games of today and yesteryear at these resolutions, there is no hope for the weak-sauce Intel HD.

Speaking of which, benchmarks of the Intel HD 4000 pretty much confirms that. It couldn't even get playable framerates in now old-hat games at sub 1920*1080 resolutions!

http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/geforce_gtx_690_nvidias_dual-kepler_videocard_benchmarked
http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/intels_ivy_bridge_maximum_pc_review?page=0,1

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vrmlbasic

About time, I wholeheartedly agree.

Apple has been pushing out laptops with 1920*1080 displays for at least 5 years now, and they have now blown 1080 away with their new displays.

I'm a PC user but I'm finding myself coveting the new macs more and more every time I use my way-too-low resolution 1920*1080 23" display that I've had kicking around for over 3 years now. There is everything wrong with that.

TBH the only reason I haven't "pulled the trigger" on getting a macbook pro w/retina (since the Ultrabook concept refuses to come to fruition) is that I have no confidence in the Nvidia 650M 1 GB GPU being able to drive even quasi-modern games at that resolution.

I'd like to buy a "high resolution" display without having to go to Apple or sketchy South Korean retailers on eBay.

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aarcane

I of course +1d the original post, and couldn't agree more.

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mbobak

"This isn’t the first time this year that a tablet has managed to grab headlines due to its display’s pixel count, though, with the now discontinued 3rd generation iPad also hogging a plenty of limelight for its 2048×1152 screen earlier this year."

Since when is the 3rd generation iPad discontinued? Did someone forget to tell the guys at apple.com?

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jhains

I bitch about this all the time! I wish the LCD manufacturers would pay attention! Moar pixels!

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tony2tonez

Pretty much the reason why i havent bought a ultrabook yet. 1920 x 1080 at 13" around 3lbs is a absolute min for me. Asus just came out with one but it runs win 8 and im not ready to jump win 8.

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Erris

Good print resolution is 300ppi, so we need monitors that match at least that.

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Arnulf

“... but ‘high resolution’ really doesn't equate ‘small fonts’ like some less-than-gifted tech pundits seem to constantly think.”

Alas, it does equate just that, at least until DPI-independence comes to Windows world. Yes, I realize Linus doesn't care about the fact that majority of people use Windows, but majority of people do use Windows and don't care about what Linus thinks.

Incidentally, most Linux distributions (all that I've tried) tend to look pretty bad once one starts tweaking font sizes to accommodate for lousy eyesight.

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strangelove9

To 4K and beyond!

That should give a pause to all those who say "Consoles are better!" and "PCs are dead!"

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Neckername

If console makers wait much longer, nVidia's Tegra chips could possibly make tablets (and other mobile devices) quite competitive against consoles in terms of gaming performance. So in the future, some may be chanting "tablets are better!" Especially if said devices could connect to a larger screen via HDMI, DisplayPort, Thunderbolt, etc. Also, most devices support controllers such as the Xbox 360 and PS3 controllers. So why not add the ability to connect a mouse and keyboard? Android's new ICS OS (in some revisions) supports external ethernet connectivity, along with USB inputs to the device as well.

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Ryuka21

i've had a blue tooth keyboard and mouse connected to my acer a500 since i bought it, has worked on honeycomb, ics & jellybean. i can edit documents, send emails just as fast as i can on my laptop. hell even bought bards tale and am playing with a ps3 controller. TABLETS ARE BETTER, guess that makes the WII U the winner :p

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Arnulf

WiDi will be the way to go in the future.

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Hey.That_Dude

Proprietary and owned by Intel. good luck getting it in an ARM based tablet. But I do think Wireless Display Port or Wireless HDMI on the 60GHz spectrum would be a great idea. Latency could be an issue though.

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And3rs0nTX

I would love higher resolutions on laptops as long as they have the power to support them.

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vrmlbasic

Agreed. Throw the Intel "HD" 4000/3000 GPUs out, or at least give us hybrid graphics options.

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Neufeldt2002

I would love to have a higher res monitor without breaking the bank for it.

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vrmlbasic

or experimenting with imports from somewhat sketchy eBay sellers in South Korea. I'd pay the 250-400 for those nice LED-backlit IPS monitors at greater-than-1080 resolutions in a heartbeat, if only they were more easily available. I'm not quite desperate enough to deal with the hassles of such an importation. Know what I mean?

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Neufeldt2002

Completely agree, though I am sitting at better than 1080 but not much, running at 1920x1200 on a 24".

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HiGHRoLLeR038

Cant wait til HD is the new SD, and 4k is the new HD. Also, i would love a 1600 monitor for my computer, but i cannot find one under $1000!!! thats just nuts.

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Andrew.Hodge

I would say he is right with one major caveat that I am sure we are aware of and a few people have touched on below me: resolution isn't everything. My screens are 900 X 1440. I can do everything I want to with my displays just fine. Would higher resolution make everything better for me? Absolutely! I would trade in my displays in a heartbeat for an equal priced higher resolution set, but place an all-things-equal set of displays with higher resolution next to a set of equal resolution but with higher refresh rate and contrast with a glossy screen and watch me jump. Balance is everything; sugar is only one ingredient to a cake.

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AgentGreen

I had 1650 x 1050 on my laptop 3 years ago, and battery life (admittedly with a 9-cell battery pack) was a solid 4 hours. There's no reason that 1920 x 1080 shouldn't be the absolute minimum on a laptop anymore. Manufacturers have gotten fat and lazy on laptop specs, and it's time that consumers start demanding more without having to break the bank to buy a laptop with what they now call "advanced features". Of course, consumers have to get off their fat, lazy asses and realize that "good enough" isn't really "good enough", it's just them being programmed to accept it and being too lazy to think for themselves.

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Belboz99

Keep in mind, 2x the length * 2x the width = 4x the area, or 4x the pixels.

Also, I was rocking a 1600x1200 CRT in 2002, and it only cost $250 at the time.

Today 1080p has just 10% more pixels.

That was one reason I stuck with CRT's until 1080p gained mainstream status, the resolution in LCD's at large has sucked. CRT's also had resolutions well past 3 megapixels, I just couldn't afford them!

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vrmlbasic

Gives me a reason to keep buying new GPUs.

As even MPC's benchmarking is starting to show (by moving to higher resolutions) our GPU tech of today has pretty much broken the 1920*1080 "beast". Tenerife claims to be vastly superior to today's tech so if resolutions don't increase neither will my future need to buy a new GPU.

I remember MPC's article on building a 1500-dollar machine to game on a several-grand 2560*1600 monitor and coveting the resolution so high compared to my 1080 that MPC said that anti-aliasing was all but unnecessary. I'm drooling just thinking about it... ;)

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Zstreek

I have been singing this song for years but for all screens. How dope would a 55" WQXGA (2560×1600) be? Sony has finally released it's 4k tv but the price is $25k. All other hardware is moving it that direction, just look at digital cameras. Ever try to look at a 16mp picture in native resolution on your gay, 1080 so-called "HD", laptop? Can we please move displays into the 21st century? Whoever decided that 1080 lines of resolution was "High Def" should be shot.

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kixofmyg0t

Whoever decided 1080 lines of resolution was "High def" should be shot huh?

Wanna know how I know you're just a spoiled little kid most likely typing that on daddy's PC?

In 2020 when you finally get a drivers license, I really hope you can look back at this point in your life and realize how much of a douche you were.

Til then, stay in school kid. Oh and eat your vegetables.

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vrmlbasic

I guess you haven't heard of "Colloquialisms"? ;)

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Zstreek

Maybe my comment was unclear, I was speaking figuratively. Of course nobody should literally be shot.

What happened is that tech companies realized that they could sell lower resolution screens for more money by naming them "HD". The use of the name fooled consumers who would otherwise have been willing to pay more for higher resolutions which were available at the time "HD" became a dominate format.

If you disagree with someone you should combat their ideas with your own ideas and not name calling. Name calling and base insults show that you either aren't capable of making a cogent argument or alternatively are just to lazy to do so.

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Gameaholic1337

Maybe that WAS the guy.

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wolfing

He is definitely not right. 1920x1080 looks just fine in my 23" desktop display, so it's even more than enough on a 13-15" laptop display. Not only that, but the extra resolution means extra CPU/GPU usage and extra battery consumption.
Give me 25% extra resolution and I probably won't notice it, but make the laptop's battery last 25% extra and I definitely will notice that.

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Hey.That_Dude

Or, if you paid any attention, you could have both for just under $400.
I know that the ARM GPUs are more efficient. However, just the power draw from a 2560x1600 display should make it difficult to plop down inside of a tablet, yet Google has no problem at all. Extrapolate that fact out and that means that a laptop with a larger battery should be able to handle the power draw from that resolution without taking to big a hit on battery power.
As for GPUs ability to run at that resolution. I find most people only watch high definition content (the reason for the stagnation). So the average to low end GPU should be able to run 2560x1600 at about 30-60 FPS. We're pretty much there already. Maybe another generation to push that ability into the low end.

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vrmlbasic

Though that reminds me that our current "HD" content doesn't scale properly to 2560*1600 as that is 16:10 and we're in a 16:9 world. :(

I have little confidence in GPUs being able to drive such high resolutions in demanding applications like modern gaming. We know that the relatively puny 650M that Apple is pairing with its "retina" displays isn't up for the task of displaying anything demanding.

MPC benchmarks give me the impression that even the current top-tier GPUs aren't up to powering such resolutions in modern gaming. I guess the GPUs don't have to have such power when there is no demand as too few of us have gotten our hands on displays above 1920*1080.

Honestly, everyone (especially if they're on a desktop) should have 1920*1080 displays at this point. That Steam's hardware survey for October 2012 reports that only 28.09% of users have such a display is saddening. It is the most common display resolution, which is a step up from previous surveys, but it's not good enough as less than 5% (~4.87) have higher resolutions.

The 2nd most common resolution on Steam as of 10/2012 is 1366*768, and that's a crying shame. Almost 10% of users have the downright _ancient_ 4:3 resolution of 1280*1024!!!!

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guntlager

I'm OK with 1080 x 1920 on 15 inch and smaller laptops displays. My MacBook Pro display looks great at 900 x 1440. I've checked out retina MBPs and they look a little better but if the GPUs are the same size I would rather have 1080p HD resolution with better performance.

To me some laptop displays look like crap while others are beautiful regardless of their resolution.

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vrmlbasic

I have to use an older macbook pro @ 1440*900 and I keep chafing at it. Not just because it's a mac and OSX Mountain Lion is still foreign to me but because the resolution is so low. I can't easily put windows side by side, not only because of a lack of known hotkeys but because the screen resolution doesn't allow me the space to properly do so.

XCode on this is rather tedious compared to when I use it on iMacs @ 1680*1050 & 1920*1080.

While it isn't IPS, it is still sad that all those years ago Apple was making LED backlit displays.

**While the 650 M GPU in the retina macbook pro surely cannot drive games and graphically demanding applications at the MBP's full resolution apple does go to lengths to assure us that the display will readily scale to 1920*1200 and other lower, 16:10, resolutions to give performance when you need it. IMO I'd rather have a Retina display with the option to go back to "1080" than a display that maxes out at 1080, but that's just me.

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Morete

The only thing that matters is what consumers want. Consumers don't care if their device's resolution is 800 x 600. It all looks the same to them. If resolution was so important (to them), why is Minecraft still so popular?

Another hard sell is the matte screen. Put out a 1600 display in dull matte and the average person won't be able to tell the difference from a 1080 and won't pay the extra cash. At least Apple got it right with crisp, vivid glossy. If PC OEM's don't at least offer the option for 1600p glossy displays, the majority of consumers who aren't into photo and video editing or who aren't reflectionphobe elitist wanna-bee's won't bite at 1600.

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dgrmouse

@Morete: "If resolution was so important (to them), why is Minecraft still so popular?"

HAHA. This is both brilliant and hilarious. Thanks for the insight.

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Mediziner

Glossy screens produce WAY TOO MUCH GLARE. I've noticed this on my laptop, and compared with my friend's 23" matte moniter, it looks terrible. The only situation in which I would recommend a glossy screen is in which you use a computer in a place with no windows at all.

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Refuge88

Soo... Many... Poor... Assumptions... It HURTS!!! IT HURTS!!!!!

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The Shelman

Whatever he names it, he is right. I am sure people will be willing to pay a small premium to get a "high resolution" display on their laptops, although they shouldn't have to. Manufacturers certainly have not done much here to attract buyers. Even the new Windows 8 portable devices seem to be restricted to a maximum of 1920 X 1080. Why? We all know why...profit margins. The same way Maximum PC updates it testing methods as newer products come out, the industry should re-evaluate what VGA, WQXGA, etc. represents. No wonder so many people flock to the Apple portable devices, they make high quality products with simple U.I.'s. The PC industry needs to follow. Windows 8 is a great start in this direction. It has the Apple factor plus the PC enthusiasts factor all built in. Well done Microsoft! We now need the higher resolution screens to complete the package. K.I.S.S.!

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arkarkwin

He is absolutely right.Six months ago, after building my latest gaming rig, I felt completely stupid to spend that much money on the hardware that I don't use as often as the low resolution monitor ( I am a gamer but two jobs and part time college restrain me from playing game for more than a few hours a week). So after buying a reasonable monitor, I thought to myself that display is the hardware I use most and I should always invest in a better display first than anything else. Like on the laptop or tablet, it is good that you got i7 or Tegra 3 on it but without high resolution display, it is only good for benchmarking.

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