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2012 MBP Retina — Retina Display Size Comparison

Last updated June 22, 2012 - Send Feedback

The stunning 2880 X 1800 “retina” display offers 25% more pixels than even a 30" desktop display (2560 X 1600).

However, one cannot use the full resolution natively until applications are modified to support it. In the meantime, see the Scaling Options page to understand how to choose a display size.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Scaling options for 15" MacBook Pro Retina display

2880 X 1800 full resolution (Aperture)

Apple Aperture supports the full screen resolution properly (albeit while wasting space for window titles).

Note that menu sizes and controls area normally-sized, but images use the full screen resolution (as shown, the 2880 X 1800 blossoms image is actually displayed on the computer within Aperture at 100% = actual pixels).

Click the image to see the actual size that is shown on the display — huge!

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Retina display fully utilized by Apple Aperture

Relative screen sizes

Shown below are actual screen shots on the Retina display, showing the relative amount of viewing area one gets with each size.

1024 X 640

“Larger Text”, appearing as a 1024 X 640 display to applications.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1024 X 640

1280 X 800

One notch more expansive than “Larger Text”, appearing as a 1280 X 800 display to applications.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1280 X 800

1440 X 900

The default: “Best (Retina)”, appearing as a 1440 X 900 display to applications. This is an exact pixel doubling.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1440 X 900

1680 X 1050

One notch more expansive than “Best (Retina)”, appearing as a 1680 X 1050 display to applications.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1650 X 1050

1920 X 1200

“More Space”, appearing as a 1920 X 1200 display to applications.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1920 X 1200

2880 X 1800 full resolution (SIMULATED)

The size of text within palettes will vary by application, but will be drawn reasonably large, yet images will use the full screen resolution. The menu bar as shown below is size-accurate.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 2880 X 1800

Relative screen sizes

Shown below are actual screen shots on the Retina display, showing the relative amount of screen real estate one gets with the various screen size (scaling) choices as per above.

1024 X 640

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1024 X 640

1280 X 800

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1280 X 800

1440 X 900

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1440 X 900

1650 X 1050

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1650 X 1050

1920 X 1200

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 1920 X 1200

Full resolution (to scale, simulated)

Until Photoshop CS6 is modified to support the Retina display, the 2880 version shown below is simulated, not an actual screen shot. But its relative size is correct.

One can see that the the increase in working space will be very pleasant for photographers.

Photoshop CS6 performance on diglloydSpeed1 benchmark
Relative size for 2880 X 1800

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