Some questions about resolutions.

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware, Devices and Accessories' started by Jakob95, May 13, 2012.

  1. Jakob95

    Jakob95 I am the Avatar

    Jan 15, 2009
    United States
    New York City
    Some questions about video resolutions and monitor resolution. My current resolution on my monitor is 1280x800, which I assume is HD(720p I guess), so if I play a YouTube video now that is in 720p, would it display on my monitor in full screen in 1280x720, or 1280x800? Now since my resolution is 1280x800, if I watch a 1080p video will it look any better then a 720p video, even though my resolution isn't 1080p? Or will it look exactly like in 720p mode? And last question the highest resolution my monitor could go up to is 1440x900(which is recommended but I don't use it because everything is to small), if I watch a 720p video on that resolution will it look better then if I watch it in my current resolution? And same goes for 1080p?
  2. Skelletonike

    Skelletonike ♂ ♥ Gallant Pervert ♥ ♀

    Dec 26, 2008
    Steam City
    Usually, the higher the resolution, the better the graphics and display for pretty much everything (from the desktop icons and browsers to games and movies).
    1080 is more recomended to 16:9 aspect ratios, so, since a 1440x900 monitor is a 16:10(might be wrong), 1080p vids will be really smooth on it, now, for smaller resolutions, in some cases it can look a bit edgy, kinda like when you shrink a large picture to a small size without smoothing it (some video programs already seem to smooth out the vids nowadays so it won't make much dif).
    Anyways, point is, unless you use bigger resolutions, 1080 isn't really worth it and you might just as well watch 720p instead.
    1 person likes this.
  3. Yuki Amano

    Yuki Amano GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    Mar 31, 2012
    United States
    My 3DS
    For some desktops, a higher resolution will make it look worse than a smaller resolution if the desktop supports up to a certain resolution. Mine is 480p, but for some reason videos look massively terrible if it's 480p and a full screen, while 360 looks normal if it's not in full screen. So you just have to play around with it.
  4. Ron

    Ron somehow a weeb now.

    Dec 10, 2009

    Besides, depending on the video, 1080p might stutter quite a bit.
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  5. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    Ignoring for a moment the option for non square pixels or pixel aspect ratio in general as it is not that useful to discuss and is fairly obvious once the rest is covered.

    720p in most definitions refers to a 16:9 image with 720 pixels of vertical progressive (not interlaced) picture. 1280x720 is in fact 16:10.

    if your video is higher resolution than the screen it will tend to be scaled down or otherwise made to fit. Sometimes you might want this as it could make for better quality (downscaling and such can reduce noise in images depending upon what goes and a 720p image from youtube is probably a quick and dirty automated script that youtube does on the content originally uploaded so maybe not the best) but if your screen is that small it might well have a processor to match.

    If it is a different resolution/aspect ratio one of three things tends to happen
    1) You get black bars (sometimes coloured and sometimes something else but black is best here for most purposes) usually on top and bottom of the video as there is no video data there. Sometimes it is nice to stick subtitles there though.
    2) You get a stretched image. Sometimes it is stretched and makes everyone look squashed or stretched and will look odd, other times they will try try stretching more at the sides which works until someone puts their arm towards the edge of the shot.
    3) You get a letterboxed image- here the top or sides will be cut off and the whole screen taken up. Most of the time this is a static crop somewhere but some better methods will try to follow the action (this is more reserved for "better" DVD conversions than anything real time although as a rule you might be missing something the director/cinematographer wanted you to see so we tend to opt out of this).

    Depending upon your options and player you can choose what you want and sometimes you can even hybridise methods (personally it is black bars or nothing for me).

    It all gets quite odd as you can have your screen convert pixels to match (this is one of the reasons some, usually LCD, monitors look horrible at some resolutions yet change 20 pixels to the next one and it looks flawless) or you can have your image output scale and fiddle with things (your media player and/or FFDshow probably allows this at various levels using various methods that might be quicker or better than the stock ones*), modern LCD TVs have similar functions although they usually go cheap and take a couple of seconds hence "game mode" on TVs).

    *there are loads of upscaling methods out there with the standard one which works but is nothing great being known as bilinear.

    I could probably prattle on for several more paragraphs but that is the gist of it.
  6. Jakob95

    Jakob95 I am the Avatar

    Jan 15, 2009
    United States
    New York City
    So watching a 720p video on YouTube will be better in which resolution on my computer? 1440x900 or 1280x800
  7. Scorpei

    Scorpei GBAtemp Maniac

    Aug 21, 2006
    Fast really explained it well, but to be simple:
    Native for your monitor is always best (LCD). IF it is an LCD and it supports X x Y as a maximum, set it to that.
  8. marcus134

    marcus134 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    May 7, 2011
    1280x720 is called 720p (16:9) (if refreshed 60 times per second)
    1280x800 is WXGA (16:10)
    there are 80 more lines

    it can display full screen in both situation
    720p video sent at a 720p resolution on a WXGA monitor = full screen -> the monitor logic will stretch the video
    720p video sent at a WXGA resolution on a WXGA monitor = full screen -> the video is scaled by the computer's gpu
    720p video sent at a WXGA resolution on a WXGA monitor = slim black bars on top and bellow the video, aspect ratio maintained

    depends on how the 720p video was produced. if it was originally made with a 720p camera, the the 720p version will look better.
    big rule of the thumb, scaling = loss of quality whether it is up-scaled or down-scaled.

    example: a 720p pixel = 1.5 pixel in width and height of a 1080p pixel, when rendering a 1080p picture on a 720p display the computer will have to guess what color to give to a pixel based on the color information of 4 pixels from the 1080p source.

    you're asking does an unscaled video look better than a video that has been scaled then stretched?
    the answer should be obvious.
    stretching and scaling reduce picture quality.
  9. chains_of_androm

    chains_of_androm GBAtemp Regular

    May 8, 2012
    United States
    Unless you game/code/photo-video edit a lot then resolution doesn't matter awhole lot.