To 4K or stay with 2K Monitor ?

Plug-in hosts and other software applications discussion
KVRAF
1683 posts since 16 Jan, 2013 from USA

Post Fri May 14, 2021 2:57 pm

It’s not the size, or the resolution, it’s both combined to form what’s called dot pitch. Or pixel density if you prefer. When you can’t distinguish the individual pixels, things appear smoother, clearer, and more natural. All other things being equal. The 27-inch 5k display is why I use an iMac.

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KVRAF
2574 posts since 22 Aug, 2012

Post Fri May 14, 2021 3:16 pm

+1
I want monitors to look crisp like my iPhone/MacBook retina display. Because I'm viewing at a distance of about 50cm, anything larger than 27" at 4K looks bad because pixels become apparent. NB) 4K screens are scaled by default on Mac, so it's much like having super crisp FHD workspace.

KVRist
178 posts since 9 Jun, 2018

Post Fri May 14, 2021 3:20 pm

antic604 wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 1:45 am
You will probably want to use Windows scaling, so whereas Bitwig and Live handle that great, Cubase and especially 3rd party plugins are a very mixed bag. But it's already much better than it was 2-3 years ago, so if you need/want such a screen for your video work, DAWs + VSTs will catch up sooner or later.
Weird, in my experience Cubase is one of the best DAWs at handling Windows scaling. I run 2 4k screens at 200% scaling on Windows 10. I would rank the ones I've used as such (best to worst):

1. Bitwig
2. Cubase. But really is only a hair worse than Bitwig, I would rate them basically the same.
3. Live. Requires special settings to work correctly, but doesn't solve all issues.
4. S1 (depending on plugins can be flipped with Live)
5. Reaper

Basically Bitwig and Cubase basically just work for any plugin I've thrown at it. Mixed bag on the rest.

KVRist
178 posts since 9 Jun, 2018

Post Fri May 14, 2021 3:30 pm

cowby wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 1:09 am
But for music production, any reason to buy 4K ?
I was on 2k screens before I went to 4k and the the extra pixel density is worth it. I'd recommend using 200% scaling and then you basically have a 1080p screen with double the resolution which makes everything look much crisper. 32" is a bit large in my opinion but then again if you are only using one screen it is an option.

27" (3840 x 2160) = 163.18 dpi
32" (3840 x 2160) = 137.68 dpi

So by going with 32" you are losing 25.5 dpi or 15.6%. Up to you I guess.
Last edited by rageix on Fri May 14, 2021 3:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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KVRAF
9456 posts since 4 Jan, 2017 from Warsaw, Poland

Post Fri May 14, 2021 3:47 pm

rageix wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 3:20 pm
Weird, in my experience Cubase is one of the best DAWs at handling Windows scaling. I run 2 4k screens at 200% scaling on Windows 10.
Maybe it's good at 200%, but at 125% most stuff other than text remains blurry/fuzzy, as if it were just 100% assets stretched up. Bitwig is always sharp, because it just draws things to whatever scale.

But it's true that it's getting better with every new version.
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My "music": https://soundcloud.com/antic604

KVRist
178 posts since 9 Jun, 2018

Post Fri May 14, 2021 3:56 pm

antic604 wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 3:47 pm
Maybe it's good at 200%, but at 125% most stuff other than text remains blurry/fuzzy, as if it were just 100% assets stretched up. Bitwig is always sharp, because it just draws things to whatever scale.

But it's true that it's getting better with every new version.
True, probably depends how they handle the scaling. I had a lot of issues with a 2k screen @ 150%. In general for most things you always want to be at a pure multiple 100%, 200%, etc... or you will get less than optimal results.

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KVRAF
3581 posts since 25 Jan, 2014 from The End of The World as We Knowit

Post Fri May 14, 2021 5:47 pm

rageix wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 3:56 pm
In general for most things you always want to be at a pure multiple 100%, 200%, etc... or you will get less than optimal results.
Very important. Also, if you get a large 4k monitor with the same pixel density as a small 2k you get the best of both worlds: large plugin gui on a 4k screen

KVRian
1372 posts since 2 Jul, 2007

Post Fri May 14, 2021 6:49 pm

4k looks amazing here on dual 32"'s , just make sure plugins support it.
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Topic Starter

1099 posts since 2 Feb, 2005

Post Fri May 14, 2021 7:54 pm

Right now with my 27" 2k AOC monitor, I didn't use set scale and layout >100% and keep the resolution to 2560 x 1440 in windows 10. But you guys just pointed out something like pixel and dpi. <-- Where to find out? Based on the monitor spec?

Cheers and have a nice weekend.

KVRian
592 posts since 25 Jan, 2014

Post Fri May 14, 2021 8:29 pm

cowby wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 7:54 pm
Right now with my 27" 2k AOC monitor, I didn't use set scale and layout >100% and keep the resolution to 2560 x 1440 in windows 10. But you guys just pointed out something like pixel and dpi. <-- Where to find out? Based on the monitor spec?

Cheers and have a nice weekend.
https://www.omnicalculator.com/other/pixels-per-inch

KVRian

Topic Starter

1099 posts since 2 Feb, 2005

Post Sun May 16, 2021 6:08 pm

I ordered a LG 31.5" 32UN550-W UHD 4k HDR monitor. I once was thinking of buying a 21:9 but found myself need more "vertical space" to view more tracks rather than to view the whole timeline/song. So I stayed with 16:9.

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GRRRRRRR!
11989 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Post Sun May 16, 2021 6:46 pm

Yeah, vertical space is definitely more useful than horizontal space. The extra height in my Surface Pro's 3:2 screen definitely makes life easier than on my big laptop's 16:9 screen.
echosystm wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 2:06 am
The difference in text clarity is significant. I consider 4K mandatory, for myself. At a company I used to work for, IT replaced all our 4K screens with 2K screens. They did this, because the 2K screens had USB-C cables and they thought we would all appreciate having a single cable connection to our laptops. What actually happened was they received a flood of complaints that the new screens were broken or there was something not set up correctly. There was nothing wrong with the screens, but people were so used to 4K that they thought the new monitors were set up incorrectly. Most people requested the old 4K monitors back.
We had the opposite where I work, amongst a bunch of very experienced motion designers. We had the option of 27" 2.5k monitors or 32" 4 k monitors and, after a month or so of testing, we decided unanimously to go with the 27" 2.5k screens (Dell U2719D). Typing this on mine now, I simply cannot imagine text that looks sharper than this.
jonljacobi wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 2:57 pm
It’s not the size, or the resolution, it’s both combined to form what’s called dot pitch. Or pixel density if you prefer. When you can’t distinguish the individual pixels, things appear smoother, clearer, and more natural. All other things being equal. The 27-inch 5k display is why I use an iMac.
No, that's just your susceptibility to Apple's marketing bullshit and a lack of critical thinking on your part. Try and find an article that mentions being able to see the pixels on any flat panel computer monitor that pre-dates Apple's marketing coming up with "Retina" displays. You won't because nobody ever, ever saw the pixels until Steve Jobs told them they could. If I had a 5k monitor, it would need to be at least 48" to be usable at native resolution and if it's not usable at native resolution, then you are eating CPU/GPU cycles for no reason.
antic604 wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 3:47 pm
Maybe it's good at 200%, but at 125% most stuff other than text remains blurry/fuzzy, as if it were just 100% assets stretched up. Bitwig is always sharp, because it just draws things to whatever scale.
I am pretty sure that it's your OS that does the scaling. e.g. If you are running a 4k screen at 200%, your OS will tell Bitwig that it's running in a 2k window and the OS will do all the scaling. It will tell applications that it's scaling, so applications can serve up higher res bitmap widgets if it has them, but the OS does all the heavy lifting, AFAIK.
rageix wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 3:56 pm
True, probably depends how they handle the scaling. I had a lot of issues with a 2k screen @ 150%. In general for most things you always want to be at a pure multiple 100%, 200%, etc... or you will get less than optimal results.
I used to think that but I have come to realise that it is not really the case. My Surface Pro scales to 125% or 150% just as well as it does to 200%. Ditto for my Lenovo tablets, which are still running Windows 8 (32 bit).

The problem arises when a plugin isn't aware of what's going on and displays its GUI at native resolution. I get far to much of that to be able to run a lot of VSTi on my Surface Pro, there is no way I'd be looking at anything 4k, unless I could run it at 100%.
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KVRAF
3486 posts since 15 Aug, 2003 from seattle

Post Sun May 16, 2021 7:44 pm

BONES wrote:
Sun May 16, 2021 6:46 pm
No, that's just your susceptibility to Apple's marketing bullshit and a lack of critical thinking on your part. Try and find an article that mentions being able to see the pixels on any flat panel computer monitor that pre-dates Apple's marketing coming up with "Retina" displays. You won't because nobody ever, ever saw the pixels until Steve Jobs told them they could.
??? I can clearly see the pixels in both monitors here. 28 and 27" 1080p.
I think 2.5k might make them go away, but Retina, (which is just Apples branding), and all other forms of HD monitors was just coming around ten or so years ago.

Plus, eyesight is way more variable than hearing, so personally I would never argue about being able to see pixels or what looks more or less clear. :shrug:

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GRRRRRRR!
11989 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Post Sun May 16, 2021 9:10 pm

Describe the pixel to me. What does it look like? There is just no way you can see them from a normal working distance, although 1080 on a 28" monitor is probably getting close to the limit, I imagine. That's probably why 27" FHD monitors go for $50 on ebay - ancient tech, although they do seem to remain popular with gamers, swapping pixel density for higher refresh rates.
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KVRist
178 posts since 9 Jun, 2018

Post Sun May 16, 2021 9:39 pm

BONES wrote:
Sun May 16, 2021 9:10 pm
Describe the pixel to me. What does it look like? There is just no way you can see them from a normal working distance, although 1080 on a 28" monitor is probably getting close to the limit, I imagine. That's probably why 27" FHD monitors go for $50 on ebay - ancient tech, although they do seem to remain popular with gamers, swapping pixel density for higher refresh rates.
I would disagree with you on that. I work on a computer all day, every day. I've had 1080p, 1440p and 2160p monitors. The jump from 1080p to 2160p is pretty noticeable in terms of sharpness. It's not voodoo magic, high dpi = sharper. Although I will admit that the farther the monitor is away from you the less you would ever notice it, that is true. Also depends on monitor size, as you'd notice the difference less on a 22 or 24 inch monitor than a 32 inch obviously because on the difference in dpi. These are real objectionable things you can test.

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