Tall Screen Laptops

The Google Chromebook Pixel looks interesting.

I mostly design documents, for American 8.5 inch by 11 inch paper, and for journals formatted that way. I am typically looking at one page at a time, so an ideal screen would match that page format.

Most screens these days are "runt screens", vertically reduced and called "widescreen". A typical example is 16x9 or 16x10 aspect ratios ( like the 15.4 inch "widescreen" T60). The Chromebook Pixel has a 12.85 inch diagonal screen, 3x2 aspect ratio, 2560x1700, and is not as tall as a 4x3 T60, but not as bad as most.

My main laptops are Thinkpad T60s with retrofitted 12in x 9in screens, 15 inch diagonal, 2048x1536, 171 px/in. My T60 laptop is currently configured with a top menu, and Firefox adds a top and bottom menu. 132 pixels, 0.77 inches of vertical space used up, 6.4% of the screen. That leaves 8.23 inches vertically to display a document. With a higher pixel density, I might be able to get by with a bit less vertical space, but my eyes and coordination aren't great, so I don't think I can get by with the lesser of 0.77 inches or 132 pixels of the screen. So how many 8.5x11 pages can I cram on my screen? I can fit 8.23 inches of vertical document, a scaling of 74.8%, so a page is 6.36 inches wide (1404x1085 px), and I can get 1.89 pages on a 12x9 screen, or 2 pages at 70.6% scaling.

On a 15.4 inch diagonal 16x10 screen, 1680x1050, the screen size is 8.16in high, 13.06in wide. 0.77 inches is 99 pixels, I don't think I can shrink below that, so the vertical space is 7.39 inches, a scaling of 67.2%, and I can get 2.29 pages across the screen. The screen is about 1 inch wider than the 4x3.

My main desktop screens are Planar PL1910M s, 15 inch wide by 12 inch high, 19.2 inch diagonal, 1280x1024 pixels, 86 px/in. On the Planar, the vertical space lost is 0.77 inches, 66 pixels. 12 inches high becomes 11.23 inches, and the 15 inch width will hold only 1.73 pages at 102% scaling. At 100% scaling, a page is 939x725 px. At 88% scaling, two 9.68 inch tall pages will fit side by side.

On a hypothetical 19 inch diagonal 16x9, 1920x1080 desktop screen, 116 px/in, 9.31 inches tall and 16.56 inches wide, An inch is 116 pixels, not dense enough to shrink the toolbars below 0.77 inch. That leaves 8.54 vertical inches for a document, a scaling of 77.6%, 2.51 pages wide. 1.5 inches wider than the Planar, much smaller page, 990x765 px.

To achieve the same 11.77 inch vertical height as the Planar at 16x9, I would need a 20.9 inch wide, 24 inch diagonal screen. That would allow me to see 2.82 100% scaled pictures, but would take 9 inches more of desktop in width.

Now about that Chromebook Pixel. That is 2560 x 1700 pixels, 12.85 inches diagonal, 239 pixels per inch. Screen size is 10.70 inches horizontal, 7.11 inches vertical, a ratio of 3.012 to 2 . Page area is 2560 x 1564, 10.70 inches wide by 6.54 inches high. Page scaling is 59.5%, 2.12 pages across, 1563x1208 px. That is a pretty damned small page, though it is a bunch of pixels, and comes with a machine that is 1.9 inch shorter and 1.3 inches narrower than my T60.

So, this is better than the average runt screen laptop, a bit larger than my 9.6 x 7.2 inch X60 and a bit smaller than my 14.1 inch diagonal, 11.28 inch wide and 8.46 inch tall alternate T60 ( 91 px/in ). Worth exploring, but I'm still pining for a larger screen that works with older eyes.

TallScreens (last edited 2013-07-23 21:18:47 by KeithLofstrom)