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View Full Version : Which aspect ratio for games? 16:9, 16:10 or 4:3?


Wolves
04-19-2011, 01:35 AM
16:9, 16:10 or 4:3?

-edit
Read following article. It explains why 16:9 is the best aspect ratio for games.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_of_view_in_video_games

supremor
04-19-2011, 05:02 AM
Its generally accepted that 16:9 is the "best" if all you're concerned about is gaming since it gives you the widest FOV (shows more of the game world) in games that properly implement widescreen (pretty much every new game does this but there are exceptions for which you can always turn to the widescreengaming forum). Personally I've never owned a 16:9 monitor and have been gaming on 16:10 for years with no complaints.

Rifter
04-19-2011, 07:22 AM
16:9 will give you the best FOV and thus allow you to see more of the game, giving you an advantage in competative games over 4:3 or 16:10 users. However if not playing competativly i dont see it mattering much what aspect ratio you use.

corkyg
04-19-2011, 10:01 AM
The best would be whichever format the game was written to.

Griffinhart
04-19-2011, 12:43 PM
IMHO, there is not much of advantage between a 1920x1080 or a 1920x1200 display while gaming. The horizontal view for FPSs are the same, which is where the highest advantage over 4:3 displays exist.

In MMO's or games where you have a ton of customizable UI elements the slightly more resolution of the 1920x1200 display is nice, though nothing earth shattering.

On the otherhand, I HATE 1920x1080 displays for general windows usage. Working with Remote Desktop sessions larger than 1024x768 is a pain. Every extra bit of desktop helps for apps like photoshop. It's a shame that most displays are simply the same panels used in TV's.

My personal gaming and general use preference is a 24" or greater 1920x1200 IPS display. I'm currently using a Dell 2407 IPS display and an Acer GD235hz (23.5" 120hz 3D LCD) on the same PC, and the Dell is, by far, the better monitor. The Acer is really just there for when I want to play 3D games on occasion. Everquest 2 looks pretty phenominal in 3D.

Cerb
04-19-2011, 02:52 PM
#4: Whatever aspect ratio the monitor is. I think 16:10 is the best balance for 1st and 3rd person games following a single unit, with taller ARs being preferable for most others (assuming it doesn't sacrifice visible space in a way that is unrecoverable, like SC2 does).

So, most importantly: FOV settings should be adjustable by the end user :).

EliteRetard
04-19-2011, 04:24 PM
With soultions like eyefinity and surround view they NEED to bring back 4:3. Its far superior for most tasks and 3+ can be linked together for increased FOV for those who want it. Using widescreens together to make ultra widescreen is just to much.

Who wouldnt buy a 24" 1920x1440 monitor if it were available (even with a small price premium over 19x10/12)? Three 1920x1440 monitors at say ~300$ each could actually give those 30" screens a run for their money.

20-22" monitors could use the 1600x1200 resolution instead of 1680x1050. That would make an excelent option for 3x setups...should be cheaper than 19x10/12 and require less horsepower to run while still giving you the verticle resolution you need on top of the FOV advantage. Also requires a little less desk space.

EliteRetard
04-22-2011, 12:17 AM
So nobody disagrees with me then? Is this just like glossy crap...nobody freakin wants it but thats all they make?

Wolves
04-22-2011, 12:27 AM
With soultions like eyefinity and surround view they NEED to bring back 4:3. Its far superior for most tasks and 3+ can be linked together for increased FOV for those who want it. Using widescreens together to make ultra widescreen is just to much.

Who wouldnt buy a 24" 1920x1440 monitor if it were available (even with a small price premium over 19x10/12)? Three 1920x1440 monitors at say ~300$ each could actually give those 30" screens a run for their money.

20-22" monitors could use the 1600x1200 resolution instead of 1680x1050. That would make an excelent option for 3x setups...should be cheaper than 19x10/12 and require less horsepower to run while still giving you the verticle resolution you need on top of the FOV advantage. Also requires a little less desk space.

Not many would buy such monitor because it would be really poor for multimedia.

You will never get more vertical FOV than with 16:9. It would just cause the gamedevelopers problems.

EliteRetard
04-22-2011, 02:19 AM
It can handle full 1080p 1:1 no problems. Or 720p on the smaller screen. But seriously, how many people willingly run full HD widescreen content on their monitors? Its all youtube and stuff like that. Even if you did, the extra verticle space would allow you to place a toolbar etc without covering your content.

"You will never get more vertical FOV than with 16:9. It would just cause the gamedevelopers problems."

Simply untrue, I get more verticle view in games with my CRT running 19x14 compared to 16x12 or 12x9. But thats not the point, the point is that verticle space is very usefull for EVERYTHING other than gaming. If the only thing you use your computer for is gaming, then throw it away get a fucking console and a TV.

And Im not saying stop making widescreen monitors...there simply needs to be a choice. But especially now with multimonitor support from video card companies you can use a 4:3 monitor for the superior productivity benefits and have another two or more if you like to have that ultra wide FOV.

And I think most would agree, 3-19x14 is better than 3-19x10...no matter if you get more verticle view or not. If nobody cared about resoltuion then we would all be running 16x10...its got just as many pixels tall as 19x10.

We certainly have the horsepower available to run these resolutions too...

Wolves
05-01-2011, 05:59 AM
Great article on this subject.

"Field of view in video games (FOV in games, or field of vision in video games) is the extent of the observable game world that is seen at any given moment.[1]
The field of view (FOV) in a video game could change dependent of monitor aspect ratio and resolution dependent of the image scaling method used by the video game. In computer games and modern game consoles the FOV normally increases with a wider aspect ratio. The monitor resolution only effects the FOV in a few older computer games.[2]"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_of_view_in_video_games

bunnyfubbles
05-01-2011, 08:22 AM
I guarantee the vast majority who vote for anything other than 16:9 do so because they own a monitor of a different aspect ratio and largely prefer that ratio for reasons other than gaming.


For those of us who can enjoy the best of both and be less biased, 16:9 is the far better aspect for the vast majority of games because it allows for a naturally wider FOV. I'd even argue that 16:9 is a rather modest aspect ratio when it comes to game, and that we could go much wider for an ideal setup.

We can force just as wide a FOV on 16:10 or 4:3 but that results in a fisheye effect that can be disorienting and cause more harm than good.

We can also balance the FOV so that we see equal amounts of the game world where 16:9 gives us the widest FOV whilst 16:10 and 4:3 increasingly reveal more of the vertical. Again, the problem there is that human vision is naturally far wider on the horizontal than the vertical so the resulting game environment on a narrower FOV is naturally less immersive (not to mention of far less strategic advantage for the vast majority of games)

evilspoons
05-06-2011, 04:37 PM
WTF would I want to bring 4:3 back for?

To get a screen with this width and 4:3 aspect ratio would make it too tall for natural human vision when putting the monitor on an average desk. (Looking up and down constantly is bad ergonomics.)

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_E4GPobMinng/SRjliFvALfI/AAAAAAAABDM/Kihh5L-nf9w/2343BWX_01.jpg

FalseChristian
05-07-2011, 08:07 AM
I really miss my 21" Viewsonic P225F 1600x1200 at 85hzt. My 22" doesn't even come close in color reproduction or size.

EliteRetard
05-08-2011, 02:06 PM
LOLz the only 2048 LCD...and I can fit 34% more on my CRT in 75% less space. Corse if I could get an even bigger CRT I totally would have. In a 24" size thatd be 2560x1920. I would totally pay $1000 + for that.

You can keep your lower resolution 30" and "bad ergonomics". I wont have to look up or down on my screen and Ill have more work space and the same or better gaming experience. Along with near instant response time and better color acuracy. Oh and if I ran into an ultra intense game that I couldnt max out at that resolution, I could simply lower it with absolutely no image degredation. Also allows me to play all my older games with no stretch or weird issues...because I can run 800x600 if I wanted to.

Of corse your argument is that no such monitor exists...and thats exactly what Im complaining about. Display technology simply stoped advancing and slid terribly backwards for years. The slide /may/ have stopped now, but it will be years more before they get back to where they started. I will be keeping my monitor untill then...but in the mean time they NEED to offer 4:3 monitors for people who want them, and there are plenty.

evilspoons
05-09-2011, 09:42 AM
I feel you may be confusing "4:3 monitors" with "CRT monitors". They made widescreen CRTs, but the ultimate reason CRTs were mostly 4:3 ratio is physics. It's very difficult to deflect an electron beam accurately into square corners. Early TVs even had rounded corners.

Let's not forget the godawful flicker and poor image quality on text unless you had them set up EXACTLY perfectly... and then there's the power consumption.

As for the image quality thing, just set your video card to always output your LCD's native resolution and then do the scaling internally ("use NVIDIA scaling with fixed-aspect ratio" for NVIDIA cards). Yes, pixels may not match up, but on games with movement the difference is damn near impossible to point out.

(I am incredibly picky about this sort of thing. I know instantly when it's reverted to the "use my display's built-in scaling" setting.)

Slaanesh
05-10-2011, 09:36 AM
Speaking about 4:3 CRT monitors; I'm still using my trusty Iiyama 19" CRT 16x12 monitor and I LOVE it. Still, I would finally like to upgrade to a flatscreen display with more screen real estate.

Is there already an LCD display which has the same superb image quality as my CRT, without noticeable lag? Price doesn't matter, but I want to make NO concessions concerning IQ.

Usage is about 75% gaming, 25% general usage.

Wolves
05-19-2011, 10:07 AM
I hope you 16:10 people enjoy the black bars in Witcher 2! :biggrin:

Ramses
05-24-2011, 11:36 PM
Viewing this on my ancient GDM-5410 SUN that is still kicking along at probobly close to fifteen years old now, 4:3 is just fine. Sometimes I run two. I use a pair of wide LCD's at work, it's OK but I really prefer a flat, square screen. Especially as pretty as these are. I've been thinking about a pair of 4:3 19" LCD's to reclaim some desk space at home, but will keep the SUN for gaming with my modest hardware at sane resolutions.
If I were to buy one of these bizzare (for a guy that had monochrome screens on his first boxes way back) resolution widescreens I'd likely have to have better hardware to play games at native resolution on them. I think Best Buy and the like decided everyone would "like" widescreen myself, all the hard core old school computer guys I know sneer at them, just like glossy laptop screens. They are very "consumer" if you will.
That's just my personal opinion and observation though.

shortylickens
05-25-2011, 05:17 AM
4:3

For those of you who failed geometry, a square has more surface area than a rectangle.


(4:3 is not a square, but you get the idea).

moriz
05-25-2011, 02:45 PM
Not true. A square has larger surface area to dimensions, but does not actually mean that it has more surface area always. Case in point, a 27" 16:9 monitor has more surface area than a 21" 4:3.

Emultra
05-25-2011, 03:26 PM
4:3

For those of you who failed geometry, a square has more surface area than a rectangle.


(4:3 is not a square, but you get the idea).

Human vision is a lot closer to widescreen than 4:3. Our hFoV is something like 160.

Ramses
05-25-2011, 05:30 PM
Not true. A square has larger surface area to dimensions, but does not actually mean that it has more surface area always. Case in point, a 27" 16:9 monitor has more surface area than a 21" 4:3.

I think the point was more to a 21" 4:3 VS a 21" 16:9. Like-ish VS like-ish.

TheUnk
05-26-2011, 08:22 AM
4:3

For those of you who failed geometry, a square has more surface area than a rectangle.


(4:3 is not a square, but you get the idea).


FOV is what matters in gaming, not surface area.

For those of you who don't understand aspect ratios in relation to FOV, 16:9 > 16:10 > 4:3.

Throckmorton
05-26-2011, 12:42 PM
FOV is what matters in gaming, not surface area.

For those of you who don't understand aspect ratios in relation to FOV, 16:9 > 16:10 > 4:3.

There are a lot of myths that get perpetuated on this forum... One of them is that games maintain vertical FOV and scale horizontal FOV.

No.... it depends on the game. Some scale both so the overall FOV stays the same, some scale vertical only. Battlefield 2 is an example of a game that maintains horizontal FOV and scales vertical.

Ramses
05-26-2011, 01:33 PM
I have a stupid question, if you run a game that has a max resolution of 1280x1024, how does a wide lcd react?

Sent from my Evo 4G

Athadeus
05-26-2011, 01:44 PM
Stretches it or puts black up black bars depending on the model and/or settings of the monitor. From what I've seen, most cheaper monitors just stretch everything to full screen.

Blue Shift
05-26-2011, 05:00 PM
There are a lot of myths that get perpetuated on this forum... One of them is that games maintain vertical FOV and scale horizontal FOV.

No.... it depends on the game. Some scale both so the overall FOV stays the same, some scale vertical only. Battlefield 2 is an example of a game that maintains horizontal FOV and scales vertical.

Thanky you. This FOV nonsense that otherwise sensible people dish out is rather annoying.

Wolves
05-27-2011, 08:25 AM
FOV is bigger in 16:9!!! and yes. I dont count old games from 2004 or something like that! 16:9 is the way to go for gaming!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_of_view_in_video_games


In Witcher 2 and Assassins Creed the 16:10 users get black bars.
http://www.gamespot.com/forums/topic/28664892/witcher-2-black-bars

crisium
05-27-2011, 09:47 AM
I like how the first two responses answer the thread but sad defenders of the dieing 16:10 keep voting for it anyway.

We get it. 16:10 is a better desktop resolution. Who wouldn't prefer 1920x1200 over 1920x1080 for your desktop? It is objectively superior.

However, we are talking about gaming. There are few, if any, games optimized for 16:10. 16:9 usually gives you the same vertical viewing area but superior horizontal viewing, making it objectively better for gaming. Most older games are optimized for 4:3, but this hasn't been a fact for several years.

Those of you with 1920x1200 monitors should voluntarily play in 1920x1080 and accept the black bars. It's not a lot of black bars, but that extra horizontal vision can get you more kills in FPS.

Personally I use a CRT and game at whatever aspect ratio I please.

Ramses
05-27-2011, 12:15 PM
Stretches it or puts black up black bars depending on the model and/or settings of the monitor. From what I've seen, most cheaper monitors just stretch everything to full screen.

On one that does black bars, is it fuzzy from not being at native resolution?

Sent from my Evo 4G

BababooeyHTJ
05-30-2011, 11:07 AM
The first time that I ever got motion sickness was when trying to use a 16:9 monitor and Half Life 2 because of the low FOV. It also happened in other games with too low of a fov. That hasn't been a problem for me with 4:3 or 16:10.

evilspoons
05-30-2011, 12:34 PM
On one that does black bars, is it fuzzy from not being at native resolution?

Sent from my Evo 4G

You can override the stupid in-monitor scaling if you have one of many new video cards. The Nvidia, AMD (ATI), and Intel drivers all give you scaling options. Personally, I set my Nvidia cards to give aspect-ratio scaling - i.e. black bars appear when you're not at native aspect ratio. It can be fuzzy/grainy if the resolutions are very different from your monitor's native resolution, but on most games it actually looks alright.

I think the video cards actually do proper bilnear scaling too instead of the horrid nearest-neighbour most cheap monitors do.

(In the Nvidia control panel, look for 'Adjust Desktop Size and Position' and then choose 'Use NVIDIA scaling with fixed-aspect ratio').

dpodblood
05-30-2011, 12:57 PM
For purely gaming I would say 16:9 because most games today are ported from console versions which are designed for 16:9 as well.

BababooeyHTJ
05-30-2011, 01:48 PM
For purely gaming I would say 16:9 because most games today are ported from console versions which are designed for 16:9 as well.

That makes a difference why? :confused:

Most console ports are also meant to be played on a TV at five or so feet away and have a low FOV.

postmortemIA
06-04-2011, 12:29 AM
Again this FOV BS. I have 16:10 monitor that scales 1:1
Suppose I use it as 16:9 monitor, 1920x1080 resolution, and that "magic" FOV, just how would person that has 16:9 would use it.
But... I have 120 more vertical pixels left; that can display more of stuff than that 16:9 screen could.

So, as it has been said, if game developer was smart, you'll see more with higher resolution.

Bolas
06-04-2011, 01:06 PM
I'm pretty happy with 7680 x 1600 (alternately 4800 x 2560). Go, 12 megapixel gaming!!

Check
06-04-2011, 03:28 PM
Assuming that Hor+ is the way the game implements widescreen AND your widescreen monitor is larger than the 4:3 counterpart, widescreen would be the way to go.

Some notable games that have been released that use the Vert- are:
Mass Effect (2007)
Wolfenstein (2009)
Civ 4: Colonization (2008)
Gears of War (2007)

PCboy
06-04-2011, 05:59 PM
Voted 16:10 because it's the closest to the golden ratio.

Also, for multiple display gaming 16:10 is much better than 16:9, the latter being way too wide without enough height.

This post (http://hardforum.com/showpost.php?p=1037113448&postcount=82) says it best, gaming or not.

evilspoons
06-06-2011, 10:18 AM
This post (http://hardforum.com/showpost.php?p=1037113448&postcount=82) says it best, gaming or not.

Note that most of the arguments in this post come down to the higher resolution and physically larger screen rather than the actual aspect ratio.

JBT
06-06-2011, 11:27 PM
16:10 FPS are not the only games out there which imo would be best for 16:9.