Mac Pro late 2013

Discussion in 'PC/Mac Builders, Mods, Peripherals - New' started by fraz, Oct 29, 2018.

  1. samphony

    samphony Senior Member

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    This!
     
  2. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    I say that if you are going to do that you should just buy a 2k monitor instead, which will be 60% cheaper and will look BETTER at its native resolution then a 4k turned down to 2k..

    UNLESS........

    If you can get 2560x1440 (hidpi) to work with the 4k, then that will look even better then the 2k monitor at native.
     
  3. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    I'm not sure it will be cheaper, Dewdman42. Pretty much everything is 4K these days.

    Costco sells a Samsung 28" or 27" 4K *computer* monitor for under $300.
     
  4. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    If you are talking about cheap Costco screens then I don’t know what to tell you, but when I look at a well reviewed monitor such as dell32” 2k it’s $350-400 and a dell 32” 4K is more then double that, plus in my case I’d have to update my video card in order to use it as would many, bringing it close to $1000 for a quality 4K monitor.

    It is what it is. Sure wish you would tell us whether you were able to get 1900ish working in hidpi mode
     
  5. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    They're not cheap Costco screens, they're good Samsung screens sold at Costco!

    I am able to get 1920 x 1080 in hdpi mode (and it's not an improvement). Sorry, I thought I wrote that.
     

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  6. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    Thanks for that! When you say its not an improvement, does it look as good as Native? How does 1920x1080 (hidpi) compare to normal 1920x1080?

    There is definitely something a bit screwy about your setup as I don't think you should be seeing any hidpi bigger then native. You have a lot of extra resolutions there, so obviously you've been having some fun with SwitchResX, but that is why you see some hidpi resolutions larger then native, which are really frankenstein resolutions that shouldn't be there.

    In order to get 1920x1200(hidpi), which is what would fit your 16:10 monitor, you need to define a "scaled resolution" in SwitchResX of 3840x2400. Then the 1920x1200(hidpi) should appear on your list and it would be interesting to hear a comparison between that one and the normal 1920x1200.
     
  7. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    Uhm, ok. Its all relative. Not all monitors are created equal. There are cheap ones, even from Samsung, or you can pay more for a good one. I'm not going to belabor the point much more but I've been doing a lot of research in the past week or two and clearly there are still QHD monitors available, they tend to be in the $200-300 range, including top rated models of that resolution. I'm not talking about the Costco special, which I would expect if you could get a costco 2k monitor it would be $150.

    Meanwhile, top rated 4k monitors are $500-900 in price, plus needing a bigger video card. They are double, or more in price when comparing similar quality monitors against each other in the two different resolutions.

    So the gist of this is that if you're going to run your monitor at 2560x1440 anyway, you may be better off buying an actual QHD monitor, saving yourself 60% of the price and running it at its native resolution, rather then degrading the picture by reducing the resolution.

    I can think of only a couple reasons to go all the way to a 4k 32" screen, which may or may not be worth the extra money:
    1. You want a tweener resolution between 2560x1440 and 3840x2160, and you're ok with the fuzziness from bumping the resolution down.
    2. You can get HiDpi mode to work correctly at 2560x1440 or better and the picture looks as good or better then native resolution.
    3. You play a lot of games or watch a lot of video and want 4k playback for that.
     
  8. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    It looks as good as native.

    Right, I can only get those resolutions with SwitchResX - and that's what it does: unlock resolutions your graphics hardware is capable of producing by macOS doesn't offer.
     
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  9. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    Thanks. In my mind that is crucial and a good reason to use that mode rather then just bumping it down to non-HiDPI lower res. HiDpi just does a smarter job of bumping down resolutions in general.

    The downside of HiDPI is that it does cause OS X itself to think the display is much bigger then it really is, which can potentially slow it down. But I dunno, if its really as clear as Native and marginally better then non-hidpi 1920x1200, then its the way to go...though...twice the price for the hardware...but I digress. You can always run it at full native resolution if you feel like putting it closer to your face.

    My understanding is that SwitchResX also has to call some OS X routines that do a bunch of low level verifying. That's why, for example, I am not able to unlock those resolutions on my system with SwitchResX. You are able to because you have an RX560 which is more capable of doing that.
     
  10. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    Right, and also because I have a 4K monitor attached. I have to "wiggle" a little (not worth explaining) to get all those res to show up for the Cinema Display. It doesn't do that automatically when I start up.

    You can unlock the System Integrity Protection and have it store that stuff permanently, but I couldn't be bothered.
     
  11. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    Ah yea that makes sense.

    I'd love to know if your 4k monitor can do anything tweener between 2560x1440(hidpi) and 3840x2160...and still look AS GOOD AS native in terms of sharpness.


    Found a great article that explains HiDPI for anyone interested. best explanation i have seen anywhere yet.

    https://www.anandtech.com/show/6023/the-nextgen-macbook-pro-with-retina-display-review/6


    And this one too:

     
  12. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    Okay, I discovered something interesting.

    At the HiDPI resolutions, text is a lot less jagged when you zoom in on it. I mean screen zoom - Control + slide up on the mouse - as opposed to Command and +.

    So that must mean it's sharper to start with. It isn't noticeable, but it must be.
     
  13. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    Yes it is.

    First off with HiDPI/Retina you have an internal canvas behind the scenes that is 4x the size of the resolution you think you are seeing. So OS X is drawing everything on that canvas on a much finer level of detail. And of course when you zoom in that detail would become more visible.

    If you put your display in one of the lowest HiDPI resolutions you will see that zoomed in level of detail that OS X is rendering things onto that internal canvas. And I suspect that Apple is also doing a lot of smart stuff to make corners and fonts and things look smoother, even at that finer level of detail and probably continues to make things even finer and finer the more you zoom in or use a lower level HiDPI resolution. The HiDPI just gives OS X something much better to work with in terms smoothing edges, rounding corners and all that kind of stuff. Think "Font smoothing" or much much better because of the sub pixels that are now available.

    If we had an actual Retina display, the pref pane looks different then what we see with 3rd party monitors. But it turns out its not actually doing anything different, its just displaying it in user friendly terms.

    In the middle it shows the "Recommended Retina" setting, which is actually 1/2 the resolution of the actual monitor. 1/2 resolution is actually 1/4 as many pixels. In any case, that is when HiDPI translates the best, purest calculations. For us without Retina, we will see resolution that is exactly 1/2 of our native resolution, and it will have (HiDPI) next to it. That corresponds exactly to that middle box on the new pref pane for Retina hardware users.

    If you select boxes to the left, you get lower resolutions which would actually have MORE fine detail shown, but the resolution would become lower, and probably undesirable. Those would correspond to lower HiDPI resolutions below the 1/2 one, that we see in our pref pane.

    If you click on the two boxes to the right it basically selects higher resolutions that are closer to the native resolution, and those correspond to HiDPI resolutions we see on our list that are in between the 1/2 one, and full native. Except to get those, we have to manually set them up using SwitchResX by creating the double sized resolution for each one, then OS X figures out to give us 1/2 of the double as an additional HiDPI resolution.

    The higher ones have really big internal canvases. Could be 6000xsomething er other, etc.. and probably are impacting performance, but who knows. And while you wouldn't see that much difference in detail while looking at the screen, compared to normal native, as you said, when you zoom in, the extra detail of that internal canvas would show you the nice edges...
     
  14. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    Well, it's largely academic for me, because my 16:10 monitor at 2560 x 1600 isn't a HiDPI and I don't have a Retina display.
     
  15. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    If you are using 2560x1600 hidpi mode then this ex is using a larger interval canvas and so not entirely academic when it comes to zooming in. But with zoom it would be a moot point
     
  16. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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    I mean there is no 2560 x 1600 HiDPI mode available. They're all 16:9, not 16:10, and it's not worth giving up about 2" of vertical screen for that.

    Also, some of the HiDPI resolutions close to the native one result in the cursor showing about an inch from where it really is. So to get back to regular res, I have to put the cursor about an inch above the SwitchResX icon.

    4K res doesn't do that, and they don't all, but it's not a happening thing.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
  17. Dewdman42

    Dewdman42 Senior Member

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    I'm pretty sure that if I were in your shoes I would just use 2560x1600 native also.

    Just be clear, if you wanted to see an HiDPI version of it..which I don't think there would be any advantage, but just to clarify, create a scaled resolution in SwitchResX of 5120x3200. Then you should see 2560x1600(hiDPI) magically appear on your list also. It would only make a difference for zooming in though, per your observation, and it would tax your computer more in order to manage the 5120x3200 background canvas. So not really worth it IMHO...and yea somewhat academic for you.

    Thanks for entertaining this discussion and telling us your results because I think this discussion is beneficial to anyone running a 4k monitor or considering it. Using 2560x2160(hiDPI) makes a lot of sense with a 4k monitor for most people where the native resolution of 4k is too tiny to read usually, and hiDPI will provide better scaling down to 2560x2160, particularly in the 32inch size.

    A 43" monitor can make more sense perhaps to run it native, unless you move it 3 feet away, then you might need to also do it there, but its good to know this is possible.
     
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  18. Nick Batzdorf

    Nick Batzdorf Moderator

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