Laptop screen: how to select the most suitable for you?
Selecting a laptop you usually have to take into account many different factors. However, the laptop display is consistently one of the most important criteria that should be among your main points.
The display has the greatest impact on the ergonomics of the mobile system. Yes, the lack of performance hardware will cost you time and nerves. However, incorrectly selected the display will lead to additional eye strain, more visual fatigue and poor labour productivity. In the long term can even lead to more serious health problems, poor vision, fatigue and headache.
To avoid all this, there are several things to consider: screen size, resolution and coverage.
Today’s market offers a great variety of combinations in this regard and to select the most appropriate, it is worth thinking about how you plan to use the laptop. Of course, today portable computer has many different applications, but here we are talking about the basic tasks: office work, games, watching movies, editing digital images and video.
The first criterion is, of course, diagonal of the screen. The choice is great – from 10 to 17 inches, but this figure is not enough to comprehensively evaluate the ergonomics of the appropriate display and, accordingly, the visual experience that it has to offer. It is necessary to take into account the screen resolution. The combination of these two indicators, commonly referred to as «pixel density» and is determined by the number of colored dots (pixels) per square inch, forming the image on the screen.
The General principle here is this: a little more diagonal in combination with higher resolution lead to a high rate pixel density (ppi – pixels per inch). Example: a 15-inch display with Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080) and 10-inch screen with HD resolution (1366 x 768) will offer almost the same density of pixels (respectively 146 and 156 ppi).
Advantages and disadvantages
A bit of theory. Take the basis of the printed edition. Most of them use pixel density of about 170 ppi, which allows content to be clearly visible to readers. This, of course, cannot be applied directly to their electronic alternatives, since we are talking about two fundamentally different ways of visualizing prints on paper and luminous point on the screen comprising one or more diodes.
However, the pixel density of the standard print edition is a good starting point. Taking this into account, we can easily conclude that the higher the number, the smaller the individual pixels forming the image. This means the image consisting of elements with thinner parts, but with a smaller relative size.
In other words, the combination of the small diagonal and the high resolution makes the image smaller and therefore less readable text on it. Windows offers options that allow you to increase the size of fonts, but at the expense of reducing image quality. Any modern monitor can also change the resolution (and thus pixel density), but it is well known that one of the most characteristic features of the LCD / LED technology lies in the fact that displays of this sort work better with the so-called «natural» (native) resolution, which by default is their maximum resolution.
Thus, when buying a laptop, pick a combination of diagonal and resolution that best suits you. For example, if you have problems with your vision, and you plan to use the laptop mainly for office tasks, then you are unlikely to need too high a pixel density that will only disturb you while reading small text, figures and view graphs.
No small role is played here and the finish of the display. About the difference between matte (anti-glare) and glossy screen we talked about earlier, but in combination with the criteria, which have become a matter of choice, one of two alternatives can have a significant value.
Let’s continue the above example: a small display with too small details and the shiny coating can be bad for your eyes, especially if you will look to him for 8-10 more hours a day.
So, choosing a laptop that will primarily be used as office machine, it is better to think about the major diagonal with a more modest resolution and a matte finish. In addition, the lower pixel density has another advantage, which is more forgiving with respect to the battery.
At the same time, fans of the films are unlikely to want to be the owner of the laptop, whose display supports a maximum resolution of HD (720p). Almost all modern movies are distributed in a widescreen format with high resolution Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels and aspect ratio 16:9). So if you are planning to use the laptop mainly for watching movies, it is better to choose a model with wide angle panel and Full HD resolution (or higher).
The glossy finish here also will benefit, as it provides dense, saturated color.
Almost all the same is true for users intending to use the laptop for editing video or digital images. High resolution is a must here, even the screen resolution QHD+ (3200 x 1800) or 4K (3840 x 2160) will be superfluous and will provide comfortable space to work on projects. The glossy finish in this case too, would be an advantage – so you can be sure that the display provides accurate and high-quality color reproduction.