aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

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Hammer
Posts: 7807
Joined: 11 May 2005, 14:50

aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hammer » 05 Oct 2014, 22:38

I have been trying to decide what to do for a new monitor. I have been considering a 27" (which are all 16:9) or a 30" (which are all 16:10). Lots of reading later, and many people argue that you actually see more game world on a 16:9 screen, while others argue that you see more on a 16:10 screen.

the 16:9 camp says that games scale the image to the 16:10 ratio and you end up losing parts of the scene on the left and right.

the 16:10 camp says it does not matter, that you see more game world vertically while seeing the same amount left and right.

I got tired of seeing about 50% of the people in each camp, seemingly based upon the monitor they purchased (of course, they are expensive), which they probably did based upon their own logic.

so I did an experiment myself. at work we have both 27" 16:9 and 30" 16:10 monitors. I borrowed them to do some testing; this started out by wanting to see which fits my desk better and to see if I would see any pixilation. both were good in that regard. but after reading more and more on the aspect ratio debate, I decided to do my own test.

guess what? the 16:9 people are right. I tested with 6 different games at the same point in each game world (MWO was the trickiest to do). in every case, since there are more vertical pixels on the 16:10 monitor the game would zoom in on the image, stretching it to fit the same game world view vertically onto the monitor and therefore cut off the left and right! so even though the 16:10 screen is larger and has more pixels, you see less of your game world.

if the games would lock the horizontal width and allow more game world to display in the vertical, then a 16:10 monitor would have an advantage in games. but it seems it is not to be, and the more rare 16:10 displays are really going to be for professionals and multi-taskers. I will say I do like the additional vertical space on the desktop, but since this is really a dedicated gaming system I do not see the point. a 30" 16:10 monitor sure is impressive though! maybe if you can have the monitor not scale (either through monitor settings or video card settings) you could have black bars top and bottom and not lose the left and right game world space.

here are the raw screen shots for you to look at, two shots for each game in each screen resolution (39MB):

http://files.rlgaming.com/displayratio.zip

the games I tested with are:

MechWarrior Online
DCS World
Dungeon Siege III
Napoleon: Total War
Neverwinter
Star Citizen

you can see a gamut of game types and ages. it seems the game manufacturers really are focusing on 16:9 aspect ratio, just like movies.
Helmut

Hudson
Posts: 1752
Joined: 12 May 2003, 20:57

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hudson » 06 Oct 2014, 06:20

Interesting. I did not know a 16:10 would be punishing you, but I long gave up on anything that wasn't 16:9 as it seems if it wasn't 720p, 1080p, etc. won the war. That's why laptops go 1366x768 now instead of 1440x900. I honestly find 1366x768 too small. That said I'm not getting a 4k or touch screen anytime soon. I'm instead waiting for Oculus Rift to purchase my next graphics card and an OR.

Hudson
Posts: 1752
Joined: 12 May 2003, 20:57

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hudson » 06 Oct 2014, 06:23

The pictures are really telling. Whole strips are missing off the side - I opened them at 100% resolution to get the full effect.

Hammer
Posts: 7807
Joined: 11 May 2005, 14:50

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hammer » 06 Oct 2014, 09:45

yep.
Helmut

Softball
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Joined: 29 Jun 2002, 18:11
Location: San Diego, CA

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Softball » 09 Oct 2014, 19:42

I'm in the process of setting up a (3) monitor station setup with 24" monitors. I'm considering getting a new video card (upgrade from my 295GTX), but haven't decided on which yet. My 295GTX is beginning to overheat on some games (I can hear the fan running on HIGH more often that before). It's not affecting any of my games yet, but I figure after 5 years, it's about time for an upgrade.
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Hudson
Posts: 1752
Joined: 12 May 2003, 20:57

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hudson » 09 Oct 2014, 19:55

Ya. I went from a 280 to a 680 and it made a _huge_ difference. Already they have the 970's/980's which supposedly use less power and are more powerful. the 980 is supposed to be good for Rift as well, which is the way I am going in lieu of multi-monitor. In fact I got a little impulsive today and just ordered a DK2. Not sure the 680 is up to the task, but I'll resolve that in prep for the CV1 if necessary.

Hammer
Posts: 7807
Joined: 11 May 2005, 14:50

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hammer » 09 Oct 2014, 20:39

what 24" monitors are you going to use? even if they are only 1920x1080, for three of them you are going to need more than a 295.

for the current card, you might consider removing the cooling assembly and reapplying the thermal paste, and a good dust off of the cooling assembly.
Helmut

Hammer
Posts: 7807
Joined: 11 May 2005, 14:50

Re: aspect ratio, 16:9 vs 16:10, quite interesting

Post by Hammer » 16 Oct 2014, 18:07

a simple work around for 16:10 monitors is to not do scaling. go to your gpu settings somewhere (where depends upon NVIDIA or ATI) and set it to either keep aspect ratio or not do scaling at all. this will put black bars at the top and bottom of what is displayed, but you will keep the entire 16:9 scene viewable. ensure you use the GPU to do this, you do not want the monitor doing it as that will add to your monitor lag. NVIDIA cards may or may not have an issue with this setting - I found on the Samsung 305T I was testing with it worked, but on my Dell U21412M it did not work with an NVIDIA card. It does work with an ATI card. this may be due to the NVIDIA card detecting that the monitor can do the scaling and then refusing to do it on the GPU. of course for overall performance you want the GPU to do this.

then for a 2560x1600 display set your ingame resolution to 2560x1440, for a 1920x1600 display set your ingame resolution to 1920x1080.
Helmut

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