Is this a retina display?
March 19, 2012 2:11 PM   Subscribe

Is this a retina display?
There is a lot of debate about whether the iPhone 4 and iPad 3 displays are truly ‘retina’ displays. But there's really no need for debate, because the question can be answered experimentally. Using some simple vision science principles, this website allows you to easily test whether your new iPad (or other display) is ‘retina-class’.
Role: everything
posted by beniamino (7 comments total)

Depending on the orientation of my Galaxy Nexus, one has a greenish tint one one of the circles. In portrait mode, it's the circle with the horizontal lines, and in landscape, vice versa. Could this have anything to do with the Galaxy Nexus using a pentile display? In any case, I can't see the lines.
posted by jessssse at 4:32 PM on March 19, 2012


Well, my Apple cinema display isn't! I checked my iphone-4 and the only way I could tell the difference was around the edges of the circles, otherwise it was pretty hard for me to tell. I selected "They look different" BTW.
posted by mrducts at 5:31 PM on March 19, 2012


Thanks for the feedback!

jessssse: Very interesting, and almost certainly pentile related. I don't understand the details yet, but will investigate...

mrducts: Yes, I was surprised how badly regular displays (even high quality ones) do on this test. I look forward to retina-quality laptop screens! [Also, I tidied up the edges of the circles because I don't think that is quite a fair test.]
posted by beniamino at 2:17 AM on March 20, 2012


iPad 2: Definitely not a retina display.
iPhone 4: Can't see the lines when held in portrait orientation, but in landscape orientation, everything on the page gets magnified and the lines are visible.
posted by emelenjr at 8:30 AM on March 20, 2012


Great to learn about the webkit pixel CSS extension! Neat!
posted by odinsdream at 11:08 AM on March 20, 2012


emelenjr: It should work in landscape too now, thanks for the tip!
posted by beniamino at 1:22 PM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


I had to have my laptop twice as far away before I couldn't see the orientation of the stripes. But I felt that I could still distinguish the stripes from a mid grey. It'd be interesting if the test tested between the 3 options, or maybe even made the user click through, so they couldn't cheat themselves.

Oh, and this is a 146 ppi screen, according to this calculator.
posted by ambrosen at 7:16 AM on March 24, 2012


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