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Great displays for Mac Pro 8 core (2010)

996 Views 20 Replies Latest reply: Nov 20, 2012 12:27 PM by Goodredroad RSS
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Goodredroad Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
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Oct 29, 2012 3:34 PM

Im using a Samsung one right now and its 1080p but even when i watch 1080p movies on the display the lines and colors are blocky and i cant fix this. So i was thinking maybe if i bought an older apple display like the Cinema display that this would be a better fit. Im not in video editing or anything I just want a good quality display to show the full potential of the computer.

Thanks for your time

Mac Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.2), My monitor is a Samsung
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (48,110 points)
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    Oct 29, 2012 3:43 PM (in response to Goodredroad)

    What model Mac Pro?


    What display card are you using?

    Mac Pro (Early 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.8), & Server, PPC, & AppleTalk Printers
  • The hatter Level 9 Level 9 (58,535 points)
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    Oct 29, 2012 4:02 PM (in response to Goodredroad)

    Try installing Lion and update it fully on another hard drive and don't make any changes, do it as a test.


    There were / have been issues with many users and the 5770 itself, some went through and the 3rd one was the charm.


    But you have to rule out software, your setup, whether you upgraded over 10.6.8 or not.


    Instead of just "Samsung" be specific. Then Google. And reset the card, power cable to the card, and the SMC.


    Safe Boot can't hurt and could help.


    Even setting up a test user account as part of troubleshooting.

  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (48,110 points)
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    Nov 12, 2012 6:45 PM (in response to Goodredroad)

    What cabling method are you using? VGA will not give you good quality on that monitor.

    Mac Pro (Early 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.8), & Server, PPC, & AppleTalk Printers
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (48,110 points)
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    Nov 13, 2012 7:05 AM (in response to Goodredroad)

    From the DVI port? From the Mini DisplayPort?


    Are you using another monitor at the same time?

    Mac Pro (Early 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.8), & Server, PPC, & AppleTalk Printers
  • nextech Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
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    Nov 15, 2012 5:56 AM (in response to Goodredroad)



    The fact is that there is no such thing as a "retina" display. 


    You have an Apple Macbook Pro with a 2560x1600 display.  Probably a 15" Macbook Pro with a 2560x1600 display.


    If you calculate that display resolution (in PPI, or pixels per inch), a 2560x1600 15" display is 201.26ppi (with a 0.126mm dot pitch).


    What this means is that you have over 200+ pixels per inch (PPI).  Which is a nice/decent display, with very high pixel density.  Many phones right now are over 300ppi (pixels per inch) with extremely low dot pitch numbers.  They are extremely high resolution displays (with very high pixel density).  This is what gives you the "clarity" and why a high-resolution display (in a very small screen size, with extremely high pixel density gives you such clarity).


    Now you are complaining about "poor resolution" on your Samsung display (using an extremely old craptastic 3-4 year old Radeon 5000 series graphics card) which is laughable (at best).


    The Samsung monitor that you mentioned is a 24" monitor (anytime you increase the size of the monitor, and use the same, or lower resolution, you are going to have FAR LESS pixels per inch).  So yes, of course if you look at a display with 200+ pixels per inch, and then compare it to a display that gets nearly HALF of that resolution (pixels per inch) that large display is going to seem "grainy" or "poor resolution".


    That 24" display should have at least 3840x2160p (4K2K) resolution, just to get 183ppi (and 0.1384mm dot pitch) which would still be lower resolution (lower pixel density) than your 15" display.


    You would actually need a 5760x3240p 32" display (which is half-way between 4K2K and 8K4K), and that would give you a 206.52ppi (and 0.123mm dot pitch) resolution, which would be comparable to what you are seeing on your 15" 2560x1600 "retina" display.


    Yes, small little touchscreen cell phones (and now small laptop displays) are using high resolution displays (with much greater pixel density) and it does give you a much clearer picture.


    Large monitor displays have not caught up, and most large monitors (24" and larger) should be in the 8K4K (7680x4320p) display resolution range right now.  Unfortunately, most are extremely low resolution (1920x1080p) which is more like a low-resolution TV (HDTV) display, and not really a high-resolution "retina" display (with a high pixel density).


    If you stand back about 15 feet, from the 24" display, then yes it would look similar to your retina display (because you couldn't see the poor resolution up close), but since you are sitting in front of the 24" display, and are using a high-resolution (200+ppi monitor display as your reference display) it's extremely easy to see why your 24" display "looks like crap".


    It has nothing to do with "1080p" because your retina display is not 1080p (it's actually 2560x1600p), so it's actually 1600p (on a small 15" screen) and you're trying to ask why a large 24" 1080p screen is much lower picture quality than a small 15" 1600p display?


    Well the simple and correct answer is that your pixel density is much greater on a small 15" retina display (2560x1600p screen resolution on a 15" display gives you 201.26ppi and 0.1262mm dot pitch resolution).


    The 24" Samsung (or any 1920x1080p display for that matter) is a lower-resolution display (it is only 1920x1080p) and it is also a much larger screen size (which means the pixels are spaced out much farther apart).  So the large 24" Samsung (at 1920x1080p screen resolution on a 24" display gives you 91.79ppi and 0.2767mm dot pitch).


    What that means is that your 24" Samsung monitor is HALF of the resolution (pixel density) as your 15" 2560x1600 display.


    The pixels are spaced out twice as far, and the pixel density is HALF of what your high resolution 15" MacBook Pro is.  So of course you are going to notice a very poor quality resolution (if you are comparing it to your retinan display on your Mac).  It would almost be like comparing a 540p display (analog) to a 1080p (HDTV) display at the same size.  You would notice a tremendous difference in picture quality and clarity.


    So no, the two are not even close to being similar.  You would need a 32" UHDTV with 8K4K (7680x4320) display resolution, and yes that would give you great picture clarity (with a high pixel density) and you would notice that it would look similar/identical to your 15" display in picture quality.


    But comparing a 1920x1080p 24" Samsung against a 15" 2560x1600p display is laughable, if you are trying to compare the picture quality (PPI and dot pitch) between the two (which is what visual resolution to the naked eye is).


    The closer the pixels are together, the "better" the picture looks.  That is why Apple is calling it a "retina" display.  There is nothing "retina" about it, it is simply just a higher screen resolution (2560x1600p) on a smaller display (15" display) thus giving you a much higher pixel density (and much higher dot pitch) and thus giving you a much higher visual quality/clarity (then what you are used to).


    So yes, if you compare it to a large 24" 1920x1080p display, you'll always be dissatisfied with the larger display.  If you want better picture quality, then get a Radeon HD 7970 graphics card (capable of 4K2K screen resolution) and then get a 4K2K monitor (such as a 30" 5120x3200p monitor) and you would have the exact same picture quality as on your 15" retina display.


    3840x2400p at 22.5" Display would give you a similar pixel density (201.26ppi / 0.1262mm dot pitch) as your 15" 2560x1600p display.


    So if you want the same quality resolution, on your desktop computer, then just buy a 22.5" display with 4K2K (3840x2160p display resolution) and that will give you the same exact picture clarity and quality (201.26ppi and 0.1262mm dot pitch) that your Apple Macbook Pro "retina" (2560x1600p) display has.


    You'll also need a high-end graphics card (like a Radeon HD 7970) so that you can display the higher resolution (4K2K resolution).


    > I have tried all of that and im still not getting a "1080p" quality. I have compared

    > the quality of the videos on my mac pro and than watch the exact same video on

    > my Macbook pro retina. The files are the same they were downloaded off the itune

    > store at 1080p so i know thats not a variable. The monitor that im using is a Samsung

    > Syncmaster SM 2494HM. On the test account i got the same results


    The files you are watching are being watched on a much smaller display (with a much higher pixel density display) so of course you are going to notice a drastic difference in picture quality. 


    It would be similar to watching a 540p movie on a 92" television and complaining that a 32" 1080p television "looked better" than the 92" 540p television.


    Same concept. 

  • nextech Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 15, 2012 6:24 AM (in response to Goodredroad)

    If you want to calculate your display PPI (Pixels Per Inch), this is a good PPI calculator here:


    Just enter your horizontal pixels (1920) and your vertical pixels (1080) [which is what a 1920x1080p display is] then enter your diagonal inches (screen size, such as 15" or 24") and then press the "solve" button, and it will show you the PPI (pixels per inch) and also the Dot pitch (in mm).


    You want a very high PPI (200+ppi is great) and 300+ppi is amazing.


    Unfortunately most displays are still very old/outdated "1080p" low resolution displays.  The reason for this is Television is extremely low resolution (and even Blu-Ray at 1080p is still very low resolution) and most movie theater movies are 4K2K (which is FOUR times the resolution of 1080p).


    You may think that 3840x2160p is "twice" the resolution of 1920x1080p, but actually it is not.  It is actually FOUR times the resolution.


    A 3840x2160p display is actually the same size/resolution is FOUR 1920x1080p displays.


    So a 30" 3840x2160p (4K2K) display, can actually display four 1920x1080p pictures (and is technically FOUR times the resolution).


    The pixel density would be twice as great (double), since pixel density is calculated by taking the diagonal resolution (in pixels) and dividing it by the diagonal size in inches (This is the advertised size of the display). 



    The easiest way (dummy proof) is to just use the PPI calculator here:


    Enter the information (Horizontal is the first number:  1920, 2560, 3840, etc. and Vertical is the second number 1080p, 1600p, 2160p).  So 1920x1080p is 1920 horizontal pixels x 1080 vertical pixels.  3840x2160p is 3840 horizontal pixels x 2160 vertical pixels.


    So the next time a COMPLETE MORON over at Best Buy (or Circuit City) tries to tell you that there is no difference between a 4K2K (3840x2160p) display and a 1080p (1920x1080p) then you can tell them that they are a complete moron, and walk away.


    Yes, 99% of this planet doesn't even understand basic/simple pixel density.  The human eye can EASILY distinguish up to 380+ ppi.


    Paper printed media is printed at 300dpi (at a minimum) which is 300 dots per inch, which is the same as 300 pixels per inch.


    Most media is printed at 600dpi (600 dots per inch) which appear as a much clearer picture (in brochures, display ads, banners, etc.)  If the human eye can distinguish between 600dpi printed media, and 300dpi printed media, then yes the human eye CAN (and does) distinguish between 600ppi (pixels per inch) and 300ppi (pixels per inch).


    I am an Imagery Analyst (for the U.S. Government / U.S. Army) and spent 22+ years as an Imagery Analyst (with perfect eyesight) and I can easily distinguish between well over 1000+ppi.


    So when dumb people say that the human eye can't tell the difference above 100ppi, then they are just morons, and only a BLIND person would be unable to tell the difference.


    Yes, it's quite obvious that most people can tell the difference between a 24" 100ppi display (1920x1080p) and a 15" high resolution 200+ppi (2560x1600) display. 


    Most cell phones and many tablets are hitting well beyond 300+ppi, and look extremely clear (which is great for viewing books/magazines/digital media at a close distance such as 12" to 36" away from your face.


    Televisions and Computer monitors should be closer to 16K8K (15360x8640p) at 50" displays/TV's.  Which would give you a nice 352.47ppi and 0.0721mm dot pitch.


    That would be a more similar/identical screen resolution to the high resolution display that you see on a Google Nexus 7 (10" tablet) with a 2560x1600p screen resolution on a 10" tablet.  (Which is 301.89ppi / 0.0841mm dot pitch).


    Most people don't realize that Apple doesn't "invent" screen resolutions.  Apple is actually about 3-5 years behind everyone else in "screen resolution" but Apple simply using marketing tricks/gimmicks into fooling people into believing that their products are the "best" and that they are Apple "inventions".


    Apple doesn't make monitors, computers, or displays.  They don't make much of anything.  Displays are made by either Samsung, LG, Sharp, etc.


    Most are all made in Korea, and Apple simply purchases the displays to use and they simply put a pretty "Apple logo" on the display, and claim that it is an "Apple invention" which it is not.


    Google is about 3-7 years ahead of Apple.  ASUS built the Google Nexus 7, and it's a much higher display than even a 15" Macbook Pro.

  • nextech Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
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    Nov 15, 2012 6:40 AM (in response to Goodredroad)

    > Im using an HDMI cable


    HDMI comes in various types, but an HDMI 1.4a cable is capable of 4320x2160p resolution.


    An older HDMI 1.2 or even 1.3 is capable of lower resolutions, but your monitor is only a 1920x1080p monitor (low resolution display) so even an extremely hold HDMI capable should be able to handle that resolution.  (Unless you're trying to play Blu-Ray quality movies, or Blu-Ray 3D quality movies).


    If you wanted to do Blu-Ray in 3D, you'd definitely need an HDMI 1.4a compatible cable.  If you're just doing standard 1920x1080p, then you should be ok with just a standard HDMI cable.  The problem is your pixel density on your large 24" display, which is extremely low-resolution.


    The correct answer is, that the problem you are seeing/having, is simply there is a huge drastic difference in screen resolution (pixels per inch) between your 15" 2560x1600p display, and your huge 24" craptastic low resolution 1920x1080p display. 


    So of course a huge display, with low resolution is going to look crappy in comparison to a very small display with a much higher resolution (and much greater pixel density/PPI).


    So that is why you are noticing such a drastic difference in picture quality, and to your eyes it would be like looking at 1980's or 1970's quality television, and wondering why it looks so bad compared to 1080p High Definition Television.


    Same concept.  You are looking at something that has twice the pixel density (much higher PPI) so yes, that old 1080p 24" monitor does look like television from the 1980's or 1970's when you are comparing it to a much higher pixel density display such as the 2560x1600p (at 15").


    Unless you dig down deep into your pockets and get a 7680x4320p (8K4K) 25" monitor, or get a 15360x8640p (16K8K) 50" monitor, then of course you are going to notice a major difference in picture quality between your 15" 2560x1600 display.


    Spend some time looking at a 10" 2560x1600p Nexus 7 tablet, and you'll begin to even feel that your 15" display (at 2560x1600p) doesn't look as clear/good as the Nexus 7.


    You're actually comparing a 301.89ppi (pixels per inch) pixel density (and 0.0841mm dot pitch) on the Google Nexus 7 tablet, versus a 201.26ppi (0.1262mm dot pitch).


    The Google Nexus 7 whips the crap out of any Apple products.  It will take years before Apple ever catches up, and then calls it "Retina 2" (as if it were an "Apple invention") but Apple doesn't invent anything, they simply just copy other people, and try to patent/name things (and try to claim it as their own).


    Apple doesn't make any computer hardware, it's all made by Samsung, LG, ASUS, etc.


    The only thing that Apple does is sue people, and try to act/pretend like they are "inventors" or "original".  Then cry foul, if anyone designs anything that has a square shape with rounded edges, and claim that a "square shape with rounded edges" was an Apple invention. 


    Just like trying to patent a vehicle with four wheels, claiming that anything with 4 wheels is an "Apple Invention".


    There is no such thing as "retina" display.  The high resolution display is simply a LG or Samsung display (enclosed in some brushed metal aluminum, and with an Apple logo on it).  But no, nothing is "invented" by Apple.


    It's all just marketing hype to brainwash foolish people into thinking that Apple "invented" something new.

  • nextech Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 20, 2012 11:02 AM (in response to Goodredroad)

    > So what graphic card would you recommend getting?


    The Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition is a great graphics card.  The GTX 680 or GTX 690 are great graphics cards as well.  I prefer the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition since it has 3GB of DDR5 (texture) memory, instead of the 2GB that the GTX 680/690 have.


    Unfortunately Apple still hasn't added Radeon HD 7970 drivers to OS X 10.8.2 yet.  So it might be a while before we see updated graphics drivers for OS X 10.8.2.


    > im disapointed in apple for putting what it looks like to be a old not so good graphics card

    > in the 2010 model.

    Yep, most people are quite upset that Apple hasn't updated OS X to support the latest graphics cards (like the Radeon HD 7970 and Radeon HD 7990).


    It would be nice to have 4K2K resolution or 16K16K resolution capabilities with the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition.


    > Would i be better off buying a new monitor or getting a new graphics card.


    Unfortunately, probably both.


    A new graphics card will give you much better 3D Graphics/rendering (and performance) in 3D (and/or gaming) and a newer monitor (with a much higher resolution and better dot pitch) will give you the better "clarity" that you are looking for.

  • nextech Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 20, 2012 11:16 AM (in response to Goodredroad)

    > I did try to play some Blu-Ray quality files, why would that make a difference?


    Blu-ray quality files (1920x1080p) are higher resolution than other movies (especially DVD's). 


    Native movie/theater resolution is 4K2K and hopefully we'll begin to see 4K2K, and 8K4K and 16K8K displays start to come to market over the next year or two.


    It would be fantastic to be able to play video games (at native 8K4K or 16K8K screen resolution) on larger displays.  The higher ppi (and lower dot pitch) would really increase the clarity, and make computer displays really look incredible.  (Similar to comparing the difference between old 540p television versus 1080p television). 


    Until consumers start purchasing 4K2K and 8K4K and 16K8K displays, most content providers won't really release too much content, but hopefully over the next year or so we'll begin to see a much bigger "push" towards native 4K2K and 8K4K displays (which can play "theater quality" 4K2K movies natively).


    It'll be great when 8K4K and 16K8K monitors/displays/televisions become common and then we'll begin to see most "television" turn into streaming IPTV (over the internet), as H.265 and H.266 are eventually adopted, and we begin to see much higher resolution programming.


    16K8K is sixteen times the resolution of 1920x1080p, and 8K4K is four times the resolution of 1920x1080p.


    We already have 16K16K graphics cards that exist (such as the Radeon HD 7970) but it's only a matter of time before Apple finally agrees to start adding graphics drivers support to Apple Mac Pro computers (and the OS X 10.8.2 Mountain Lion) so that users can eventually take advantage of greater display resolutions (such as 4K2K, 8K4K and 16K8K).


    Hopefully over the next year or so, we'll begin to see 8K4K displays become more common (and more affordable).

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