I'm looking at getting a Dell laptop with 1600x1200 resolution because I figure most games come with 800x600 support. A lot of other Dell screens have resolutions like 1400x1050, which I've never seen supported in games. I hate the blurry scaling with improper resolution on LCDs.
Will 1600x1200 properly scale to 800x600 on the screen?
I have a Dell I8000 w/ a UXGA (1600x1200) screen and it will run games at 800x600 res "properly" and "crisply". Though, IMHO the scaling and bluring are hardly (or not at all) noticable at even a not-so-native resolution (such as 1024x768, 1280x1024 etc...).
In answer to your post, yes it will scale properly. However, I would advise you not to worry so much about the scaling especially when gaming.
In games, on an LCD, the 'blur' associated with a lower than native resolution is very difficult to notice in games, especially FPS or 'high-action' games. It doesn't matter what an LCD's native resolution is when it comes to scaling down, it makes no difference. The only thing that makes a difference is how your video driver is set up: i.e. to stretch the image to fill the screen, or to keep the native resolution and show black borders around the image.
Who's General Failure and why's he reading my disk?
Wow, that was deep inside the menus. I don't think I've been to that screen before. Great thanks. I'll have to try out BF1942, which always drove me crazy with 1280x940 resolution (OK, I admit it, I play some FPS).