We visited with Acer at this CES, and they didn't specifically have anything that we were told we could discuss, but after seeing another publication with pictures of Acer's pre-release 2880x1620 IPS display laptop it appears that's fair game. So, let me tell you what we know.

The panel as noted is 2880x1620, with a diagonal of around 15.6" (give or take 0.1" I'd guess). This is basically the non-Apple version of the QWXGA+ display, only in 16:9 attire rather than 16:10. The display is clearly IPS or some other wide viewing angle design, and when we walked into Acer's suite to look at the laptops and tablets, from an oblique angle it stood out as far and away the best display of the bunch. I also took some time to show the same image (wallpaper) on the 2880 panel alongside adjacent 1366x768 and 1080p panels (both TN), and the difference in color was astounding.

My best guess for when we'll see this LCD show up in an Acer laptop (and potentially in laptops from other vendors) is around late Q2 2013, when the Haswell launch occurs. That should give the OEMs plenty of time to figure out how they're going to deal with an ultra-high-DPI panel in Windows, and that's where Apple's control over both the hardware and the OS is going to be difficult to beat. Hopefully when the display shows up, manufacturers will also remember to spend the extra time and money to pre-calibrate for accurate colors, and it sounds like that's at least in the cards.

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  • ananduser - Monday, January 14, 2013 - link

    Pointless as Windows grants you complete access to the resolution and the scaling. It's going to be a tough road ahead for every dev to optimize the gazillion of Windows programs to something they should've adhered from the start; and that is scaling guidelines. Where Apple forces a double on everything as to avoid non-integer scaling(and still depends on the devs to repatch), Windows allows you to pick any size between 100% and 200%, yes that includes 137% or 184%.

    Case in point: Mozilla optimized Firefox for rMBP; but did not optimized it for the 200%, or the same setting, on the Windows front.
    Notice that Mozilla has built in 1.25 and 1.5 scaling where idealistically they should make Firefox independent of the scaling scale in Windows.
  • mrdude - Wednesday, January 16, 2013 - link

    Oh yea, these panels are going to be a huge headache for a good chunk of users.

    Windows DPI scaling isn't going to be "fixed" unless Windows dumps legacy altogether and alters their approach to Metro. I've personally tried out my productivity software on the 1080p Zenbook when contemplating a purchase and quickly found it to be absolutely abysmal as far as text and scaling were concerned. The idea of getting a great display with lots of pixels to play with quickly took a backseat to "Oh god, please just let it work." As much as I'd love to see the move away from the default crappy 1366x768 panels, I'm also well aware of the troubles the await.

    I'm not even sure MS can get it right with Metro given that their Win8 scaling hasn't improved at all. In fact, IE Metro still can't scale properly and issues come up when browsing certain sites. If they can't even get their own software to work properly then there's no hope that the rest are going to follow suit.
  • JNo - Monday, January 14, 2013 - link

    Bah.... PCs finally catch up with apple in resolution and it's bloomin' 16:9 instead of 16:10...

    If someone actually made a 4:3 laptop nowadays, I think I might actually buy it (cos I don't care for films on laptops anyway)
  • ShieTar - Tuesday, January 15, 2013 - link

    I don't care about films either, but 16:9 gives you the option to include a numpad on your 15" Notebook. With 4:3 screens, you needed at least 17" screens to get enough keyboard real estate.

    As far as work goes, luckily most modern software allows you to move all your menus/ribbons from the top to the side of the window, leaving you with a more square working area. Due to this, I am no longer as unhappy about 16:10 or 16:9 screens for work as I used to be when they first started showing up.
  • Sabresiberian - Wednesday, January 16, 2013 - link


    16:9 is terrible on a 15" display. (I think it's terrible on anything less than 27", and not great there, even for a 2560x1440 monitor).
  • tipoo - Wednesday, January 16, 2013 - link

    I've seen Windows DPI scaling break a few applications, I like to leave it at 100%. With that, things on my 1920x1080 15 inch laptop display are to a point where they are just big enough. With a resolution this large, you'd have to go to one of the scaled settings (125% or 150%) to be comfortable, which may lead to some incompatibilities. How are they going to deal with this? On the Macbooks they just used pixel doubling since it was an exact doubling of resolution in each dimension, but with Windows there are multiple resolutions to support. How will this work?
  • nleksan - Thursday, February 7, 2013 - link

    I admit I don't understand why all these ultra-awesome displays are only heading into laptops??
    It's not like you can stick 4x GTX680's in a 15" notebook, or a pair of K20 Tesla compute cards, or whatever...

    Seriously... ~215ppi for what?

    Why not make the same display, only offer it in ~24-27" monitors. Give us the 138-122ppi, make it IPS (AH-IPS), and make it affordable...

    What doesn't make sense to me is why the GPU companies are not more heavily influencing panel production... It would be in their best interest to make displays that are hard to push, then they can come out with their "GeForce Titan" cards and give us the solution. They get money, we get happy.

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