I looked at a Retina the other day and........

Started Apr 6, 2013 | Questions
blogan
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I looked at a Retina the other day and........
Apr 6, 2013

I couldn't really see a big difference. I have a macbook from 2010. It suits me just fine. I have 8 gigs of memory in it.

From what I saw of the Retina, there didn't seem to be a huge difference. Can anyone explain what the difference between the Retina screen and my screen might be?

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Robert Peters
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Re: I looked at a Retina the other day and........
In reply to blogan, Apr 6, 2013

blogan wrote:

I couldn't really see a big difference. I have a macbook from 2010. It suits me just fine. I have 8 gigs of memory in it.

From what I saw of the Retina, there didn't seem to be a huge difference. Can anyone explain what the difference between the Retina screen and my screen might be?

You should see smoother text and more detail in images when applications that take advantage of the "retina" display are used.  In fact, I can view images at 2:1 on my 15 inch rMBP.

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Najinsky
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Re: I looked at a Retina the other day and........
In reply to blogan, Apr 6, 2013

blogan wrote:

I couldn't really see a big difference. I have a macbook from 2010. It suits me just fine. I have 8 gigs of memory in it.

From what I saw of the Retina, there didn't seem to be a huge difference. Can anyone explain what the difference between the Retina screen and my screen might be?

It's different for text and graphics. Text improvements are system wide and should nearly always look crisper and smoother. A few apps (very few, and usually cross platform apps that share source code) render their own text and these can actually look worse due to scaling.

On none retina displays you usually can make out the gaps between pixels, and the pixels are larger so the text looks corse. It depends on your eyesight and the viewing distance, but the closer you look, the more obvious the difference, as these two close-ups show.:

For graphics, the application has to be designed to display retina level detail. If it isn't, it will be rendered using up-scaling. The retina pixels are still much finer, but the upscaling cancels out most of the benefit.

For example, the Safari browser downloads it's graphics from the net, and these graphics are designed for most browser on most computers, which overwhelmingly means designed for regular DPI. On retina, these graphics have to get up-scaled to display at the intended size so again don't really get any benefit other than the smaller gap between the pixels. Some websites can detect the use of a Hi-DPI screen and send high resolution graphics instead and these look much better, but they are still very few in number.

However, Aperture fully supports retina, and images there look fantastic, because you see 4 times the detail; patterns on fabrics and skin, veins on leaves and flowers, and so on.

If you don't see these resolution differences, again, it may be due to viewing distance or your eyesight. It might be worth checking your vision with an optician. I don't mean that in a flippant or offensive way. Many people walk around without realising their eyes have deteriorated slightly, as they may encounter very few occasions for it to become noticeable. But with 20/20 vision, and normal viewing distances, the retina difference are clear and striking.

Resolution aside, depending on the model you're comparing to, the retina display may have a better colour gamut, be brighter, have better contrast and more even backlighting.

-Najinsky

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afterburn
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When I bought my Retina..
In reply to blogan, Apr 7, 2013

And powered it up, I was thinking "is this all? what's the big deal?".

Then I worked on it for 30 mins and I had to start up my old Macbook to pull some files off and I was like "wtf happened to this screen?? The pixels are so large they get in the way of reading!"

And looking at photos in iPhoto/Aperture/Lightroom is like looking at a print. It's just better than anything you'v ever seen on a low res screen. Just stunning.

And no tired eyes after a full day at the office working with documents.

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blogan
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to afterburn, Apr 8, 2013

Thanks. I'll give it serious consideration. I'm a photo hobbyist and use aperture, so I might really enjoy the screen.

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Art Jacks
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to blogan, Apr 8, 2013

When considering a Retina screen I put several of my images on a memory stick and headed to the Apple store, the staff obligingly agreed to put my images on a regular machine and a Retina version, 10 minutes was all it took me to see and appreciate the difference in screen quality. I too am only a keen amateur photographer so the new computer was a hefty investment that would not give any pay back other than the benefits of working with such a great screen, there are other issues to be had with the SSD and Thunderbolt and USB 3 connections making it a very rapid machine so it is not just about the screen.

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dpscoot
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to Art Jacks, Apr 8, 2013

Not that this message is about the screen.......but......

I spent 5 minutes with a Retina 13" and bought it, as an upgrade to a 10.4 running iMac (2Ghz 2GB and 320GB hard drive.)

Well it was actually for my partner, but now she's got 8 gigs of Ram, a fast SSD and a crystal clear screen.

To tell you the truth, we were looking at the macbookAir, but this 13" macbook is so light anyway, the processor and drive much bigger, it was no contest in the end for the 15%-20% increase in price. The battery seems to last forever......I guess the hard drive in a portable is the biggest drain.

(weight of the 13" is almost nothing compared to my 15" Quad 2011).

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DenWil
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Re: I looked at a Retina the other day and........
In reply to blogan, Apr 8, 2013

If you looked at it, if you read the literature, if you don't see a reason to change machines then for you there is no reason to change machines.

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RonPhil
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I am amazed at the detail in my photos in Aperture...
In reply to Najinsky, Apr 9, 2013
No text.
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AShimon
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to afterburn, Apr 9, 2013

afterburn wrote:

And looking at photos in iPhoto/Aperture/Lightroom is like looking at a print. It's just better than anything you'v ever seen on a low res screen. Just stunning.

Anyone with questions about rMBP need just read this statement. In fact, I would take it a step further and say it's almost better than a print!

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RonWA
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to AShimon, Apr 10, 2013

I have a question about the Retina display, triggered specifically by a comment from Afterburn. Do you users find a reduction in eye strain with this new display? I am a long time Mac user and currently use a 15 inch MacBookPro with 6 GB of RAM and a 750 GB hard drive. It does what I want to do which includes text for emails and committee work and photo work with Aperture but I get eyestrain from using it and, yes, I did have my glasses checked but can't do much about my age. If eye strain is reduced I would consider trading for a new MBP with Retina but I would have to do something about the reduced size of hard drive. Thanks.

Ron

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Art Jacks
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to RonWA, Apr 10, 2013

I am nearly 67, I wear vario focus glasses and I would say that the Retina screen has made my computing much more relaxing for my eyes, the screen image is sharp, my older MBP's always looked great until put side by side with the Retina screen.

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RonWA
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to Art Jacks, Apr 10, 2013

Art,

Thanks for the reply. I have also considered getting another, larger monitor but I travel quite a bit in an RV and don't want the extra hassle. I will take a look at the Retinas.

Ron

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dpscoot
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to RonWA, Apr 11, 2013

When you look at the Retina screen, go into the preferences and change it to large text (in display settings) to see if you prefer that option.

Of course you're losing real estate but it is still very clear.

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afterburn
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to RonWA, Apr 11, 2013

RonWA wrote:

I have a question about the Retina display, triggered specifically by a comment from Afterburn. Do you users find a reduction in eye strain with this new display? I am a long time Mac user and currently use a 15 inch MacBookPro with 6 GB of RAM and a 750 GB hard drive. It does what I want to do which includes text for emails and committee work and photo work with Aperture but I get eyestrain from using it and, yes, I did have my glasses checked but can't do much about my age. If eye strain is reduced I would consider trading for a new MBP with Retina but I would have to do something about the reduced size of hard drive. Thanks.

Ron

I use my Retina set to the "more space" setting, which sizes the display to the equivalent real-estate of a 1920x1200 resolution display and it gives me less eye strain and makes me less tired than looking at  my old Macbook Pro with 1440x900 resolution. Text is small, but because there is no pixelation in the text it is much easier to read.

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RonWA
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Re: When I bought my Retina..
In reply to afterburn, Apr 12, 2013

Thanks for all the replies. It sounds as though Retina is the way to go in the future. Ron

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