Screen too blue, jagged text?


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  1. MentatYP

    MentatYP Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I posted this on another forum, but I'm looking to make a phone purchase decision soon and hope to get some feedback here as well:

    First of all, new member here. Hi everybody!

    My wife and I went to an AT&T store today to check out the Captivate (and the Aria for her, which she loves). I was very impressed with the Captivate (TouchWiz haters should give 3.0 a chance. I thought it was quite nice.) except for the screen. 2 issues:

    • Screen is too blue, color balance is too cold.
    • Jaggies on browser text when zoomed out--more so than other phones with the same or similar screen resolution zoomed all the way out. It looked like maybe there was a lack of text smoothing at that zoom level, which made text harder to read than, say, a Droid X zoomed out. I tried it on engadget.com and theonion.com and saw the same behavior.
    I know this could be misconstrued as trolling, what with this being my first post and all. I'm truly not though. I went to the store wanting to love this phone and be ready to buy it, but the screen issues I saw were very unexpected so I wanted to check with y'all to see if I'm just missing something. Is there a way to change the color balance of the screen? Is there a text-smoothing option somewhere that I can turn on to make browser text more legible zoomed out? From my time playing with it I loved everything else about the phone, but these screen issues are deal breakers for me. Thanks ahead of time for any help/insight.

    While searching the forum I found a similar thread regarding the cold color balance issue:
    http://androidforums.com/samsung-captivate/124656-modify-screen-kelvin.html

    ... but no sign of any solution. I hope my plain English thread title (no mention of "Kelvin" :)) will get some attention and there will be a solution for both issues I'm seeing.
     

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  2. bentroxell

    bentroxell Member

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    Nope, no problem there. That's unfortunately how the screen looks. I would advise you not to look at the iP4 screen if you still want to get the captivate.
     
  3. tcv

    tcv Well-Known Member

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    I too have experienced some jaggedness on the browser. If I zoom out all the way on this page, I can just barely make out the words. The iPhone 4 screen is better for plain text, i'd say, but in every other way I prefer the super amoled screen.
     
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  4. Sledutah

    Sledutah Well-Known Member

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    Before I bought my Captivate, I had read reviews regarding the text looking jagged when zoomed in. But I have not seen that at all. The display is very nice and clear.
     
  5. Ferris23

    Ferris23 Well-Known Member

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    That's the screen. It's got great contrast and colors are vivid but also inaccurate. Whites are way off and text is grainy

    Also notice images become distorted as you scroll up or down on web pages. I just found the clarity to be sorely lacking. Not a bad screen but not as good as some are making it out to be, especially compared to a retina display.

    I also noticed text blurs as you scroll up and down. Personally I was disappointed in the screen.
     
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  6. Regalicious

    Regalicious Well-Known Member

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    The images-becoming-raggedy-while-scrolling thing is a function of software (compresses the images to lessen the load on the proc and make scrolling smoother).

    The raggedy text bothers me but I've learned to just ignore it :p it's a property of the PenTile Matrix used in the screen. I had qualms with it prior to buying the Captivate but ultimately it wasn't enough to turn me away.

    I personally really like the colors and contrast (especially the deep blacks).

    I think the Captivate's screen is better for media/pictures and the Retina Display is better for text by a fair amount. It just depends on what your preference is.
     
  7. dsjr2006

    dsjr2006 Well-Known Member

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    That's because it's a pentile OLED. It will not look as crisp as a standard LCD with the same resolution.
     
  8. getDange

    getDange Well-Known Member

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    I was aware the screen was Pentile, and I checked out DInc and this one keeping my face 2 inches from the screen. I did not see anything that would make me consider an LCD. I read text with NORMAL zoom level that does not make it hard to read. with normal zoom level the text is excellent. And I actually looked at the "retina" display and did not like it. SAmoled looked more "eInk"ish to me, easier to read. Just my 2 cents.
    I am honestly more concerned with the GPS I can't make to work.
     
  9. dsjr2006

    dsjr2006 Well-Known Member

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    The Droid Incredible has a high pixel density due to having a smaller display and if I'm not mistaken it also uses a slightly different arrangement of the sub-pixels
     
  10. MentatYP

    MentatYP Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks to everybody who replied. So the good news is I'm not hallucinating. The bad news is the consensus seems to be that these issues are normal for the Captivate screen. Man. I so wanted to like this phone. The text jaggies zoomed out I could probably live with by just zooming in a bit--would prefer not to have to, but it's a work-around I could deal with--but that blue screen is wack. It's bluer than any display I've ever seen.

    Just so happens I checked out the Incredible a couple weeks ago, and I don't remember its browser text looking like the Captivate's when zoomed out. I'm gonna have to check it out again to make sure now that I know what a pentile screen can do to text, but if memory serves I had no issues looking at text on the Incredible. Maybe I should wait until HTC starts shipping out the SLCD-equipped Incredibles and get one of those :)
     
  11. MentatYP

    MentatYP Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    iP4 definitely has a nice screen, but that's about the only thing about it that's attractive to me. A bad screen might be a deal-breaker for me, but a good screen can't single-handedly redeem an otherwise undesirable phone :D

    The issue with the Captivate's screen isn't that it loses out to the iP4's screen, but that it loses out to just about any other smartphone screen in areas that matter to me. "To me" being the operative phrase here. My 2-year-old HTC Fuze (ugh!) and the HTC Aria both put the Captivate screen to shame in terms of color balance, and neither have the jagged text issue (the Aria is flat out hard to read at full zoom out, but you expect that at 480x320--this shouldn't be an issue for the Captivate's 800x480). Obviously plenty like it just fine, but you can like something and recognize its shortcomings at the same time, which members posting in this thread have done, so thanks again to everybody for the straight answers. Guess I'll be looking elsewhere for my first Android phone, but I really appreciated the help you've given me here.
     
  12. sremick

    sremick Well-Known Member

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    Guess I'm not seeing all the faults of the Captivate's screen that you are.

    Does the iPhone 4 have a higher-resolution screen? Yes.

    But the Captivate's screen has brighter, more-vivid colors, true black, has amazingly better contrast than the iPhone 4 or any other screen I've seen, is thinner (fewer layers than LCD), uses less power, is easier to see in sunlight, can be viewed by much wider angles, etc.

    The advantages of the Captivate's screen far-outweigh it's slight resolution disadvantage. And honestly, at normal viewing distances, you don't tend to notice the lower resolution relative to the iPhone 4.

    As far as the whiteness balance... as many others have said in other threads, it's only something you notice when put next to the iPhone. When you're just viewing the Captivate alone by-itself in normal use, you never notice it.
     
  13. samtr87

    samtr87 Well-Known Member

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    I went to check out the Captivate for the first time today after reading a ton of reviews and watching a bunch of youtube clips. From normal viewing distance (~2.5-3 ft), the pixels are noticeable. Not like I saw giant dots or anything, but they I could catch them. The colors are awesome though. Have to go play with it a few more times before I make my decision.
     
  14. dsjr2006

    dsjr2006 Well-Known Member

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    There has been much debate over this, but by many methods of analyzing the screen resolution of OLED displays like the Captivate and N1s, the numbers are actually lower than their stated values.
     
  15. DontMindMe

    DontMindMe Active Member

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    Kelvin! I love kelvin. I'm on my captivate right now, I'm not sure about the screen being too blue, but when zoomed all the way out I can still read it, its just a little harder, but maybe its just me and my youthful eyes.
     
  16. MentatYP

    MentatYP Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    You're probably not. My wife says I have super-human senses. It's both a blessing and a curse :D

    Just to clarify, it's not the lower resolution that bothers me. It's how the device renders browser text when zoomed out. It's hard to describe, and I don't know how store employees would react if I tried to take pictures of the screen, but the best I can describe it is that the letters are thicker in certain parts of the letters. Imagine if you were writing with a pen that occasionally leaked to make your pen strokes come out thicker. It's like that except digital and consistent. That probably didn't make much sense, but I don't have better words to describe the issue right now.

    Back to my super-human senses again. I easily noticed it without a side-by-side. I then compared it to my Fuze and an Aria just to confirm, but I definitely noticed the very blue white balance independently of any other displays. If I only noticed it when comparing against others I could probably live with it, but it's so obvious to me when I browse (white background = blue) that I know it would bother me every time I used it.

    I can still read it too, but the weird irregular thickness issue with the text at full zoom out makes text look weird. Livable, but not too pretty.

    I got some good suggestions elsewhere on the fact that the store model I tried might not be representative of all models and I might see one with less blue in the color balance, as well as some browser text settings to try out. I'll definitely go to another store to try and find a better screen color and mess with the text settings some. I want to want this phone enough that I'm willing to give it another shot. Wish me luck!
     
  17. MentatYP

    MentatYP Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Posted this elsewhere, but wanted to update folks here as well as thank everybody for their help:

    I went to a different AT&T store today and they had 2 demo Captivates up, although unfortunately not side-by-side. After a bunch of running between the two phones while trying to remember what the previous phone's screen looked like, it looked to me like one of the phones was as badly blue as I'd seen before but the other one looked pretty good. I could still tell that the color balance was a bit on the cold side, but it wasn't nearly as bad as the other Captivates I saw and probably wouldn't even occur to me if I hadn't been looking for it.

    On the jagged text issue, setting default browser text to "large" fixed it at the expense of less text visible on screen at one time obviously. Basically it's a work-around like doing a slight pinch-to-zoom, except that it realigns all the text and makes it fit unlike pinch-to-zoom on the Captivate (is the Incredible the only one that realigns text when you pinch-to-zoom?), so in that way it's actually a better work-around than doing a slight zoom. I'd be happy with that.

    As a side note I also stopped by the Verizon store and double-checked the Incredible (also AMOLED) to see if it renders text the same way. Maybe the Incredible does more text smoothing than the Captivate, because at full zoom out the Incredible didn't have the weird jagged text but the overall sharpness was also less. I really need to have all these phones side-by-side to do a proper comparison.

    So now the questions are, "Am I up for a bit of color balance lottery? Am I willing to play the exchange game until I find one that looks good enough?" Couple that with the GPS issue and I think I might have to ride the fence a bit longer.

    Thanks again to everybody who replied. This has been an educational experience for me. Who knew there could be so much sample variation between screens? Not me.
     

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