What's the point of 4k if you scale up the size of things?

ShoeLace

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I'm in the market to buy a new monitor for development and casual gaming but I'm worried about going with 4k because check this out.

3840 x 2160 vs. 1920 x 1080

Does that mean if you run a 4k monitor at 200% scaling you will end up with the same exact screen real estate as 1080p? Of course pixel density will be higher but meh.

I care about screen real estate more than super high density. That got me into thinking too, can someone with 20/20 read 4k standard text at 100% with a 27" display?

Because even if you scale it all to 125% wouldn't that be about 2880 x 1620 of screen space? The thing that kills me is you can get a good 2560 x 1440 for about $300, so 2 of those would give you a MASSIVE amount of space over a single 4k monitor @ 125% scaling.

Is my math right? I don't want to spend 500-600 bucks on a 4k monitor which has a tiny bit more real estate than a single 1440p monitor.
 

leeleatherwood

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Why would you scale anything?

Get a 34"+ monitor and the DPI will be within a reasonable range as to not need to scale anything.
 

Xinmosni

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If you're looking at cost effectiveness, multiple monitors trumps single high-end monitor every time.

But if you're looking at picture quality, I'm sorry but high pixel density wins, at least to my eyes...

For development/work, multiple monitors makes more sense, both economically and ergonomically. 4K and its larger screen real estate is only advantageous at larger screen sizes (which are not cheap by any means unless you're looking at HDTVs, so maybe more expensive than what you're looking to buy).

Also, I don't have 20/20 vision but can read 4K standard text at 100% on a 27". Doesn't mean I WANT to, since there are few cases where I need ALL text on my screen at the same time, but I can. I find the extra screen real estate of 4K res to help more for photo/video editing. For text, just set up multiple monitors in portrait and be done with it.
 

ShoeLace

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@leeleatherwood,
I wouldn't but I keep reading a ton of people saying they need to scale up to at least 125% for most 24-27" monitors at 4k because it's barely readable otherwise.

Also I don't think there are any reasonably priced 32-34" 4k monitors that are IPS, SST and 60hz capable?

@Xinmosni,
What scale do you normally run at? Do you have to struggle at times to read it?
 

Quartz-1

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For text at 4k, yes, it helps to scale, but the text is better on the eyes as long as you're using a scalable font.
 

leeleatherwood

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@leeleatherwood,
I wouldn't but I keep reading a ton of people saying they need to scale up to at least 125% for most 24-27" monitors at 4k because it's barely readable otherwise.

Also I don't think there are any reasonably priced 32-34" 4k monitors that are IPS, SST and 60hz capable?

The "larger" 4k monitors are just starting to be shown at CES.

I personally wouldn't get a 4k in anything less than 32" as then you would need start playing with DPI scaling... which leads to alot of issues (some applications don't support it, some applications the icons get blurry, etc).

Unless you need a monitor right now, I would say to wait a couple of months until more models start hitting the shelves.
 

rive22

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Multiple 2560x1440 PLS/IPS is the way to go until the larger 4k displays get better. 4k should be 40-44" IMO for workstation displays.
 

leeleatherwood

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And how the hell would that even usable/realistic? My heck hurts just thinking about it

My workstation setup at work is 4x 22" 1080p's on a quad mount, which would be about the same size as a ~40" display and my neck is fine.

EDIT: Now that I think about it, I am technically already running 4k... those bezels though are annoying.
 

Xinmosni

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@Xinmosni,
What scale do you normally run at? Do you have to struggle at times to read it?

150% usually, unless looking at very large photos. I really really tried to find ways to justify keeping it at 100% always, but it just makes so little sense when I do not NEED that much screen real estate unless dealing with some VERY stupidly-designed spreadsheets. Bezels actually help to aid in separating my workflow process, and the speed at which I can just drag and dock applications within multiple monitors seems to be much quicker than manually resizing them within a vast open mess.

And even if you were to try and use 100% scaling in a work scenario, unless you are working ALONE it makes little sense when you have to show anyone else something on your screen and they absolutely cannot read wtf is there unless they have hawk eyes or want to sit in your lap. Maybe a good thing if you work for a startup with nothing but hot 20-something post-grads, okay. But for me and the 99% of us ITs working in the real world, it'll usually be a balding chainsmoker who wants to sit and look at your work, and he may or may not have showered this week...
 
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ShoeLace

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In my case I work remotely so I would be alone but I don't want to sit there struggling to read text all day. That would be almost as bad as some crusty neckbeard being within lice jumping distance from my face in an office situation.

I'm also a full stack developer, so it's not just text. I tend to have a lot of stuff going on. Code editors with multiple text based windows, a lot of terminals, 1 or more web browsers, image editors. Basically a mash up of many different programs and window sizes.

@rive22,
I'm sort of realizing that now, but I think I'd take a single 32" 4k monitor over 2x 24" 1440p monitors if both were equally good in terms of specs.

32" 4k is 138 PPI
24" 1440p is 122 PPI

My current monitor is a single 1600x1200 21" Dell FP2007 (95 DPI). I had a second monitor but it's so ancient that my new build's video card doesn't have a jack for it and I wanted to upgrade my monitor anyways, it's an aged 1440x900 from like 11 years ago. I don't think it's even worth getting an adapter.

It basically comes down to waiting however many months to find a 32"+ good specced 4k monitor (SST, IPS, 60hz) in the $600ish range or snipe 2x 24" 2560x1440 monitors now for around 300 each.
 

GoldenTiger

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@leeleatherwood,
I wouldn't but I keep reading a ton of people saying they need to scale up to at least 125% for most 24-27" monitors at 4k because it's barely readable otherwise.

Also I don't think there are any reasonably priced 32-34" 4k monitors that are IPS, SST and 60hz capable?

@Xinmosni,
What scale do you normally run at? Do you have to struggle at times to read it?



Heh, people said the same thing about 2560x1440 monitors too.... :rolleyes:. 4k is fine with 100-125% scaling at 28" and no scaling (100%) at 32", from experience and owning a 32" ips sst 60hz 4k monitor a couple of months now, and having used a 24" one since May 2014. I only had to shell out $675 for my 32" Acer B326HK, and have seen ones as cheaply as $750-850 since, perfectly reasonable for the tech. I scale the font in my web browsers a little but that's it. I sit at a distance of around 22-24" from face to screen for viewing and work, plus some gaming ;).

Even if you were to use some scaling normally you still gain a huge amount of desktop workspace, better dpi, and higher resolution for images, anyway. If you don't understand it, I recommend looking up some basics of how monitors and computer resolutions work. (EDIT: This is in general, not to you ShoeLace.)

EDIT: To qualify my statements, I am a full stack developer working in games. The primary programs I interact with daily now are Visual Studio, 3ds Max, Allegorithmic Substance designer and painter, Photoshop, Unity, OneNote, and occasional Illustrator work.
 
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ShoeLace

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GT,

That monitor is 1k on Amazon. Looks like a beauty tho. I could sit at about 24". I'm totally fine with 125% scaling in a browser, but I want to enjoy the full glory of 4k res at 100% for general real estate for everything else.

What put you over the top to get that instead of 2x 2560x1440s?
 
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I care about screen real estate more than super high density. That got me into thinking too, can someone with 20/20 read 4k standard text at 100% with a 27" display?

I agree. I am all about real-estate as well. To answer your question yes if you really have 20/20 vision it should be easily readible at 27 inches. Now for some people its readable but still 'uncomfortable for them.'

I have 20/15 vision. I had no problem for years using a 22 inch 3840x2160 display and X-windows set at 75 DPI (smaller fonts than windows 96 DPI font setting). I can use a 15.6 inch laptop display at 3840x2160 with fonts set at 100 DPI setting (font are finally getting a bit to small for me @ 75 DPI) but I have better than average vision. I think if me with 20/15 can do 3840x2160 @ 15.6 inches then 27 inches should be no problem for someone with 20/20. This is assuming normal viewing distance of 1.5-2.5 feet. Now if you are one of those people who like there display 3-4 feet away from their face then that may not be the case...
 

ShoeLace

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I was at 20/20 with glasses a few months ago at my last perscription change. Glad to hear your success though at those display sizes.

Man I want GT's monitor so bad but 1k haha, I can't pull the trigger at that price. You can buy a completely decked out 4k 15" laptop for the same price (i7, 16gb of ram, ssd, etc.).
 
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I was at 20/20 with glasses a few months ago at my last perscription change. Glad to hear your success though at those display sizes.

Man I want GT's monitor so bad but 1k haha, I can't pull the trigger at that price. You can buy a completely decked out 4k 15" laptop for the same price (i7, 16gb of ram, ssd, etc.).

You are probably more less likely to have issues if your someone who wheres glasses with a recent prescription.

I find most people are ones that don't wear glasses and think they have 20/20 because they can make out the 20/20 line with some effort when in reality they have 20/30 or 20/40 vision.

I always had 20/15 vision corrected with glasses. I now have 20/15 corrected with lasik.

Before lasik without glasses my vision was horrible (more than -5 diopters in each eye) but again, excellent once corrected.
 

hidden2u

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Have you never watched an Apple press conference? :)

"The pixel density is so high, your eyes can’t discern individual pixels."
"Images take on a new level of realism."
"let you see more of your high-resolution images with pixel-for-pixel accuracy."
"And text is so sharp, you’ll feel like you’re reading email, web pages, and documents on a printed page."
 

Arct1c0n

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I had to beg, plead and just short of suck dick to get my twin 24" 1200P monitors at work, so 4k will only happen in my home or if I switch jobs/careers.
 
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Have you never watched an Apple press conference? :)

"The pixel density is so high, your eyes can’t discern individual pixels."
"Images take on a new level of realism."
"let you see more of your high-resolution images with pixel-for-pixel accuracy."
"And text is so sharp, you’ll feel like you’re reading email, web pages, and documents on a printed page."

Hahaha, yeah...

There certainly are those benefits although with apples HiDPI mode you will see things were viewing images in a browser will be pixel doubling so its actually worse quality than looking at regular native resolution and other stupid stuff like that....

My issue with HiDPI mode is it just doesn't work properly and in some cases you are wasting pixels via pixel doubling.

I mean sure seeing really nice fonts is good but alternatively I like making them so small to get more real-estate to the point where adding more pixels to the fonts doesn't really help because they are already so physically small its getting near the limit of your vision. That is ideal for me :)

I do have to laugh at the manuals to my original 4k displays (first one I got back on 2005). It actually said you would ruin your vision if you ran the desktop at the native font sizes, what a joke, LOL.I used that as a primary display at work until I finally replaced it with a seiki 39 inch display and no ruined vision here :) I have better vision than most.
 

Psych0

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At 4k resolutions, I'd consider going the opposite direction. I'd want a much smaller sized than standard monitor that I could move much closer to my eyes so that I could still keep the entire monitor in view distance. As my current setup is a 23.5" 1080p monitor at about 2ft away, I find the perspective to be a bit disproportionately big as it is, as in, my eyes really only encompass about 75% of the screen, while moving it further back would cause some squinting.

Adjusting DPI is never a good solution. There are too many scaling issues. Getting a huge monitor makes much less sense, given that you're giving up the sharpness advantage of getting a higher resolution monitor by reducing PPI as well as requiring far greater than, 'desktop' viewing distance.

The best solution is to get a much smaller monitor, move it much closer to your eyes and put it on one of these things:

LQnokmI.jpg


I've found that an object can be freaking tiny as long as it's close enough to your eyes, the eyes will have easier time adjusting to it being much closer. Needing to get higher and higher resolutions on bigger and bigger monitors while moving further and further away just doesn't make sense at all. You give up the PPI advantage and clarity is significantly diminished.

To me, it's a no brainer. The best step forward is not bigger higher resolution but rather smaller and closer. Similar to direction VR is headed but without the VR.
 
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