Monitor Resolution

Settings for Monitors, Laptops, TVs and Projectors

You’ve seen the confusing alphabet soup of acronyms describing the various monitor resolutions, laptop displays, LCD and plasma televisions, as well as projectors, yet you probably still don’t know what it all means. I can help you make sense of all the madness, just read on.

What are common resolutions for plasmas, monitors, notebooks, and projectors? Briefly stated, sharpness and clarity of the picture on screen is determined by its resolution, which is the sharpness of the image projected based on the number of pixels. Monitor resolution is measured in the number of pixels horizontally multiplied by the number of pixels vertically. The higher number of pixels there are, the better the picture quality. Plasma screens, projectors and LCD screens have a fixed number of pixels, referred to as the “native resolution,” or the resolution at which the display device does not have to expand or compress the input signal. This is the device’s optimum resolution. LCD images used in front projectors and rear-projection monitors typically offer XGA (1024 x 1024 x 768 pixels) or SXGA (1280 x 1024 pixels) resolution. Front projection monitors also use SVGA (800 x 600 pixels).
Projector Resolutions

Multimedia video projectors are typically available in four categories of resolution -UXGA (1600 x 1200), SXGA (1280 x 1024) – XGA (1024 x 768) and SVGA (800 x 600), which is the most popular format for projectors.

Notebook Monitor Resolution’s

Bigger isn’t always better when it comes to monitor resolution for notebooks. That’s because the higher the resolution, the smaller, and closer the pixels. This means you can fit more info on your display, but the print will also be much smaller and harder to see for some users. But, it also means the picture detail may be better. Thus, high-resolution displays may be best for users who need many windows open simultaneously and who have eyes that are sharp enough to read smaller fonts. Notebooks using the 4:3 aspect ratio usually feature screens with the following resolutions: XGA (1024×768), SXGA+ (1400×1050) andUXGA (1600×1200). Some of the latest notebooks feature a 16:10 ratio wide-aspect display. The associated resolutions include WXGA (1280×800), WXGA+ (1440×900), WSXGA+ (1680×1050) and WUXGA (1920×1200).

Plasma Resolutions

Some plasma TVs only have vertical resolution of 480 lines (often referred to as EDTV). If a plasma TV isn’t clearly labeled regarding HDTV compatibility, check its pixel count. EDTV resolution for widescreen plasma models is “852 x 480”. Plasmas that are capable of displaying HDTV signals generally have resolution of 1024 x 768 or higher.

Below are charts that match the resolution pixel ratio to the acronyms that go with them. The first chart below lists monitor resolutions for screens having the 4/3 width to height ratio used in traditional television broadcasting. The second chart lists resolutions for High Definition Television (HDTV), which uses a screen width to height ratio of 16:9.