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native resolution vs actual pixels?

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  • Flat Panel Monitors
  • Resolution
  • Monitors
  • Peripherals
Last response: in Computer Peripherals
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September 12, 2006 1:41:15 PM

if the native resolution of a monitor is listed as say 1920 X 1200, is this saying that there are this many pixels in the actual construction of the unit? a physical number? or if I want to know the native verical pixels is this a different value?

Thank you for any assistance and links for learning.

More about : native resolution actual pixels

September 12, 2006 7:00:38 PM

Native resolution is the hardware's number of pixels available for display. Ie, a 1024x768 LCD will have 1024x768 actual pixels for display. In such a display, running a higher or lower resolution requires resampling of the data, so that it can be scaled up or down for the actual number of pixels present. (Upscaling is not often done, except on some LCD TVs and LCD Rear projection sets.)

For this reason, it's best to always run at the native res with an LCD... otherwise your picture can start to look funny or distorted.

Native vertical resolution is simply the number of horizontal-lines available on the display (768 in my example above). In other words, the number of lines stacked vertically that comprises the image. A TV with 720 native vertical lines can display 720i or 720p best, as this is a matched resolution. Higher and lower resolutions will need to be resampled.

Put another way, if you feed a 1080 image to such a TV, you are downscaling the data to 720, since your TV can't ever show 1080... hence this is very important if you are picking an LCD or LCD RP TV. Similarly, feeding a 480 signal to this TV would require upscaling to 720, which is not an "even" number, as you can see... and can result in some distortion.

So, when a TV says it's 1080, 720, and 480 capable, you need to read the fine print to know what it's REALLY doing. (Early LCD RPs would say 1080 in big bold print, while they ran a 480 LCD inside... so you never got true HD!)

EDIT: Mixed up vertical lines of res vs horizontal lines of res - corrected. Added last paragraph.
September 15, 2006 3:36:37 PM

How significant is the effect of downscaling. I am looking at 19" LCDs, and the native resolution for most of them seems to be 1280x1024. My system is rather old and week, and as such I play older games which means I would often be running at resolutions of 1024x768 or even 800x600.

My only concern about going LCD is that the performance in older games, of newer ones run at low resolutions due to limited system capabilities would be poor.

Basically, what I'm asking is how severe a "penalty" does one pay for downscaling resolution on an LCD?

Thanks.
September 15, 2006 4:15:33 PM

Quote:
How significant is the effect of downscaling. I am looking at 19" LCDs, and the native resolution for most of them seems to be 1280x1024. My system is rather old and week, and as such I play older games which means I would often be running at resolutions of 1024x768 or even 800x600.

My only concern about going LCD is that the performance in older games, of newer ones run at low resolutions due to limited system capabilities would be poor.

Basically, what I'm asking is how severe a "penalty" does one pay for downscaling resolution on an LCD?

Thanks.


You won't really know until you try. Not all monitors will be the same. For your older games, maybe you should keep a CRT around just for them?
September 17, 2006 10:57:57 AM

it depends, i say different monitors do it better than others some say it looks bad regardless.

on my monitor it looks fine even if stretched but you can also use scaling functions on some LCD's like maintain aspect ration which will improve things but you get slight black bars and then on my one at least you get 1:1 pixel ration which, although you may get quite big black borders for low resolutions does mean no interpolation or blurriness.

i don't use lower res's if i can help it but it is a nice feature to have.

all in all i say go for the highest res that your hardware can support.
!