How dos OS handle 1080P over 720P?

Heres a question. My monitor is 1080P, but I run the OS at 1360x768. thats the best resolution due to the screen size and distance to my eyes. Higher resolutions would make letters too small.

Now lets say I go play a movie file that is 1600x900 or 1920x1080. Since the graphics card is adjusted to display a smaller resolution signal output, will the content be shown on a true 1080p?

Let me be more specific to the answer Im looking for. When I play games I know that the game changes the screen resolution. When I start Battlefield for example, my graphics card goes to a higher resolution and stay there while Im playing the game. When I close it, windows takes about 0.5 seconds to go back to my set resolution, I can see very rapidly the icons on desktop really small, then the screen goes black, then its come backs normal, everything is very fast, but noticible.

But does this also happens when running quicktime or windows media player? Maybe when going full screen? I never noticed any icons size difference....

BTW, I run both Mac OS and Windows, and I would like to know how both these OS handle the case..
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  1. Best answer
    If you have your screen resolution set to 720p, then no, you'll never get true 1080p. If you want it to be true 1080p, you'll need to change your resolution when watching the movie. As far as I know, this is true regardless of OS - I know it's the case in both Linux and Windows, but I've never used a mac.
  2. you do realise you can change resolution in game right?? and you know can make the size of the letters on screen bigger while keeping a high resolution right? During movie playback the movie will scale to whatever your desktop res is set to.
  3. Quicktime or WMP or any media player do not have a true fullscreen and will scale the image to your screen resolution. Some games will change resolution to whatever it is set to; as you said Battefield does. Same on mac and pc and I suppose linux. As crowe said, you can have a high rez and change your font size(dpi).
  4. Oh, I actually wasnt aware of changing the font everything changes, including icons in the desktop, menu windows, photos in firefox, etc???? And when I play a 1080p file, I will get true resolution?
  5. Best answer selected by leandrodafontoura.
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