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TheOne1080

Does a 4k screen make lower res content look worse?

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I was wondering when you for instance are browsing the web on your 4k screen, does it make the 1080p and 733x542 etc images which you see a lot on websites look worse because of upscaling? (Btw I also use 150% standard zoom in windows settings.) So all pixels should be stretched a bit instead of just using the 733x542 pixels and look really small on my screen. 

 

I know though that when you display 1080p content , upscaling wouldn't effect the quality at all, as 4k will be exactly 4 times the pixels of a 1080p screen. So for every 1 pixels, 4 will be turned on now. But how will this work with other resolutions which don't scale that nicely?

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So. Each pixel is told to turn a certain color. Those that don't get instructions (I.e. on a higher res monitor than content)  will try to approximate the pixels in between. Which probably won't look quite as good as native, but nothing to really worry about


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1 minute ago, zMeul said:

yes, it's worse

it's exactly the same as running 720p game on a 1080p screen

Not quite this extreme, the approximations get less noticeable as you go higher res.


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Just now, wrathoftheturkey said:

Not quite this extreme, the approximations get less noticeable as you go higher res.

depends who does the upscaling

for video players, they have internal upscaling algorithms that do a good job; but for games ... it's very noticeable

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That depends on the size of the display too. If you have a 21" 4k monitor, chances are 1080p will look alright, but it won't look too great on a 28 or 32" 4k monitor.

Since 3840x2160 is the size of four 1920x1080 screens, when a 1080p video is played at fullscreen, every pixel of the video will be effectively stretched across four pixels of the monitor. Depending on how close you are to the display (and, again, the size of the display), this could be either negligible or extremely noticeable.


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7 minutes ago, zMeul said:

yes, it's worse

it's exactly the same as running 720p game on a 1080p screen

Not quite, because 1080p scales linearly to 4k. it may still look slightly worse, but not by much.


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7 minutes ago, zMeul said:

yes, it's worse

it's exactly the same as running 720p game on a 1080p screen

not quite, actually, i'd dare say 1080p content looks damn near identical on a (same size) 4k panel as it does on a 1080p panel.

 

and in terms of odd scaling values, i'd dare claim 4K will be better because you have more pixels to stretch the image over, so in the end the small screwups that happen are less noticable.

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5 minutes ago, Sauron said:

Not quite, because 1080p scales linearly to 4k. it may still look slightly worse, but not by much.

here's 1080p vs 720p internal scaling, look at the edges of the robot

1080p - 100% :

Spoiler

Js8sHhx.png

720p - 66.(66)%

Spoiler

kQZs2pr.png

 

ps: open images in a new tab

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Just now, zMeul said:

here's 1080p vs 720p internal scaling, look at the edges of the robot

1080p - 100% :

  Hide contents

Js8sHhx.png

720p - 66.(66)%

  Hide contents

kQZs2pr.png

 

but these are 1080 vs scaled 720, if you really wanna do the test, you'd have to scale 720p to 4K and to 1080p, and then realise that you're not as right as you think you are :P

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Just now, manikyath said:

but these are 1080 vs scaled 720, if you really wanna do the test, you'd have to scale 720p to 4K and to 1080p, and then realise that you're not as right as you think you are :P

I don't have a UHD display, so I can't naively display UHD content

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2 minutes ago, zMeul said:

I don't have a UHD display, so I can't naively display UHD content

i can, and i tell you you're not as right as you think you are ;)

 

in fact, i have a 1080p next to a same size 2160p, now if only the 1080p panel's colors had more depth than trump's speeches i'd be able to do a fair comparison :D

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Just now, zMeul said:

content??

2 minutes ago, manikyath said:

now if only the 1080p panel's colors had more depth than trump's speeches i'd be able to do a fair comparison :D

not quite :P

 

and it's not as amazing as it sounds, the 1080p panel was a freebie, and the 2160p was super cheap on an outlet deal, and because energy labels werent important for dell it kicks out more heat than my computer xD

 

and the 1080p panel's colors are so bad i have to put different wallpapers on it to keep it from pissing me off...

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1 minute ago, manikyath said:

-

so it's video

 

let's not talk avout video as there are many ways to upscale video content with good results

I was specfic about games

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3 minutes ago, zMeul said:

what content??

some random super high quality showoff youtube video, gotta keep the color reproduction somewhat honest between the two xD

 

(and yes, i totally thought you meant this definition of content.)

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1 minute ago, zMeul said:

I was specfic about games

i'd suggest to load up a game, but i'd prefer for my dell panel not to crash today. (it doesnt like complex things like changing resolutions when its hot.)

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Had I the money, I'd probably buy a 4K panel, even though I'd have little chance of playing anything new at 4K. The additional resolution is a great help in surfing, and more productive uses such as video editing, writing, 3d, etc.

 

Scaling probably depends. In the case of perfect multiples, there should theoretically be little discernable difference. In other cases, you may just have to live with the slight quality hit. In a decent video player, the quality hit with scaling 720p video should be minimal, in gaming, the video card should at least handle 1080P.


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1 hour ago, TheOne1080 said:

I know though that when you display 1080p content , upscaling wouldn't effect the quality at all, as 4k will be exactly 4 times the pixels of a 1080p screen. So for every 1 pixels, 4 will be turned on now.

 

1 hour ago, Aereldor said:

TSince 3840x2160 is the size of four 1920x1080 screens, when a 1080p video is played at fullscreen, every pixel of the video will be effectively stretched across four pixels of the monitor.

That's actually not necessarily true. It depends on the display. In theory 1080p content could be scaled in this way, but it is not implemented this way on most 4K monitors, interpolation is still used.

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To me, with a screen DSR > 4K because you can't browse internet on a 4K resolution and more importantly, if a game runs slowly in 4K, using DSR on a 1080p / 1440p screen you can still adapt the resolution lower

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