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  1. #1

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    Default Retina Display for deteriorating eyesight?

    I still see just fine - in fact as far as distance goes, I've got eyes like a hawk. However, I can no longer read 'fine print', and anything closer than around 40cm from my eyes is starting to get a bit blurry. So besides booking a visit to an optometrist (as it's obvious the time has finally come to get glasses), I was wondering if I would benefit from replacing my 13 inch Macbook Air with a 13 inch Macbook Pro with Retina Display? Will the Retina Display make the large amount of time I spend in front of my laptop 'easier' on my eyes?

    On another note, some people tell me the weight difference between the two is barely noticeable, but others say it's really noticeable. I'd really appreciate as many opinions on this matter as I can get. Portability is really important to me (I also have a 27 inch iMac), and I guess what I really want to know is if the 'better' screen is worth the extra weight?
    Last edited by thenewblack; 28th October 2013 at 10:55 PM.

  2. #2

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    I got a 13" retina mbp today and can say that in the hand you cant tell the difference between the air and the pro. The 13" pros standard resolution is 1280 x 800 (it has a 1440 x 900 option which is what your macbook air uses) so it probably would be a bit easier on the eyes.

  3. #3

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    According to this page, the 13" retina MBP is 1.5kg, compared to the 13" Air's 1.35kg. I'd consider that difference negligible. As for your eyes, the glasses are what will help you read the text, not the pixel density. I thought I might have trouble going from a full-size retina iPad to a non-retina iPad mini, but I've adjusted to it and prefer the lighter weight of the mini as a trade-off for having text that's less crisp. I do wear glasses occasionally myself, as my vision starts to blur when I'm tired sometimes. I find that with glasses on, any text is nice and readable again, regardless of whether it's on paper or a non-retina screen. I would say wait until you get your glasses before making a conclusion.
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  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by rav3n View Post
    I got a 13" retina mbp today and can say that in the hand you cant tell the difference between the air and the pro.
    Hmmmmmmm, that's not encouraging.



    Quote Originally Posted by rav3n View Post
    The 13" pros standard resolution is 1280 x 800 (it has a 1440 x 900 option which is what your macbook air uses) . . .
    Wow, that's a surprise! I would have thought for sure the native resolution would at least be the same as the Air! That's really lame.

  5. #5

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    Nope, the Airs res is 1440x900, the 13" MBPs res (retina and non-retina) has always been 1280x800. The 15" MBP has always been 1440x900.

    That said, on the retina MBPs you can scale above and below the native resolution. I run my 15" rMBP at 1920x1200 most of the time, unless it's docked on a desk and further away from me, then I run it at 1440x900.

    Out of the box the 15" retina supports scaling 1920x1200, 1680x1050, 1280x800 and 1024x640 while the 13" supports scaling to 1680x1050, 1440x900 and 1024x640.

    You can also get third party utilities that allow for additional resolutions including running full native resolution if you really want to.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chundermuffin View Post
    I'd consider that difference negligible.
    It's 220 grams, which is about a 20% increase in weight - so I see it as more than "negligible". It's around the weight of two iPhone 5's.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chundermuffin View Post
    As for your eyes, the glasses are what will help you read the text, not the pixel density.
    My concern was the anti-aliasing of all text. Edges are jagged and blurred to give the impression of even curves, and your eyes do the work of smoothing them lout. I was assuming that your eyes wouldn't be worked as hard with a Retina Display?


    Quote Originally Posted by Chundermuffin View Post
    I would say wait until you get your glasses before making a conclusion.
    Haha, yeah, that'd be the sensible thing to do. However I just know I won't wear them all the time. I often use my Air on the couch while watching TV - actually on my lap. If I had glasses on, the TV would be blurry. Ideally, even though I will be getting glasses for when I'm ONLY reading, I'm hoping for an all-round solution when it comes to choice of laptop.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Fraser View Post
    Nope, the Airs res is 1440x900, the 13" MBPs res (retina and non-retina) has always been 1280x800.
    Yeah, I knew the standard MBP was 1280x800 (part of the reason why I initially chose the Air) - but as they were selling the rMBP on it's impressive screen, it seems a really stupid move on Apple's part to only make it the same default resolution. I get why they did it, but I wouldn't have.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Fraser View Post
    I run my 15" rMBP at 1920x1200
    Before getting the rMBP I was *very* hesitant to because of the low default resolution, but after seeing one in the flesh and playing with it I was more than happy to take the plunge. I'm in the same boat as Alec and run it at 1920x1200 (in my case all the time) and have to say that running a non native res hasn't presented any issues at all.... and I'm usually very picky about these things but haven't noticed any degradation.



    As for the OP's original question... I don't know that it's going to help all that much, fundamentally you will be reading text at the same relative size albeit in a higher resolution.
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Hawk View Post
    I don't know that it's going to help all that much, fundamentally you will be reading text at the same relative size albeit in a higher resolution.
    Yeah, same sized text in terms of font size - but what I was hoping was that as the text would be a whole lot sharper no matter what size it is, it'd be easier of the eyes?

  10. #10

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    Well, what do you know? Seems like there's some evidence to say that retina's better for your eyes. I think that article answers your question, OP

    Btw, the difference in weight is only 150g, so it's more like 10% (an iPhone 5 with a large case )
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  11. #11

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    I'd say absolutely the retina screen is easier on the eyes. Because the contrast is better and text is sharper I find you don't need the screen to be as bright as with a non retina display which also helps to reduce strain.

    When I first picked up the non-retina iPad mini I thought there was something wrong with my eyes. It seemed so blurry since I was used to my iPhone 4 (at the time) and rMBP and I really struggled to read iPad formatted webpages on it.

    So anecdotally I'd say it's much better.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chundermuffin View Post
    Well, what do you know? Seems like there's some evidence to say that retina's better for your eyes. I think that article answers your question, OP
    Nice! That's the kind of thing I was looking for, but couldn't find. Thanks.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chundermuffin View Post
    Btw, the difference in weight is only 150g . . .
    The difference between 1570 grams and 1350 grams is 220 grams.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by thenewblack View Post
    Nice! That's the kind of thing I was looking for, but couldn't find. Thanks.
    No worries!

    Quote Originally Posted by thenewblack View Post
    The difference between 1570 grams and 1350 grams is 220 grams.
    Ah okay, either I misread it the first time or I managed to find a page that said the 13" retina was 1.5kg. Just checked it again. I'll sleep easier now!
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  14. #14

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    Hehe, if only it was 1.5Kg!

    I'm bummed now, because while I was deliberating, it appears Apple has run out of the refurbished rMBP I wanted to buy! Sucks, but it's my own fault - ya snooze, ya lose.

  15. #15

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    Almost four months have passed, and finally the Apple refurb store restocked the rMBP at the price I'd originally seen. It'll be here tomorrow.

    The final decider for me was a side-by-side at the Apple Store with my MacBook Air and one of their rMBP's set at the same (relative) screen resolution. The rMBP is SO much easier on my tired eyes.

    Stoked!

  16. #16

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    Well caught! Can't wait to have enough dosh to do this, myself. next iPhone first.

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