Question Can I run 1440p or 4k on a 1080p monitor?

MadsModsat

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Some games has a "resolution scale" option, or sometimes it is called "render resolution" available in the graphics settings menu.

Increasing the resolution scale enables you to render the image at a higher resolution, for example 2K or 4K, which is then downscaled to 1080p.

It improves image quality, but demands extra resources from the GPU, so FPS will decrease.

I'm not familiar with the current AMD graphics cards, but for Nvidia, there's a DSR option available in 3D Settings, which can "force" games that doesn't have the resolution scale option built-in, to render at a higher resolution, which again is then downscaled to 1080p.

But it is not "true" 4K, and using actual 4K or 2K on a 1080P monitor is not possible.
 
May 3, 2020
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Some games has a "resolution scale" option, or sometimes it is called "render resolution" available in the graphics settings menu.

Increasing the resolution scale enables you to render the image at a higher resolution, for example 2K or 4K, which is then downscaled to 1080p.

It improves image quality, but demands extra resources from the GPU, so FPS will decrease.

I'm not familiar with the current AMD graphics cards, but for Nvidia, there's a DSR option available in 3D Settings, which can "force" games that doesn't have the resolution scale option built-in, to render at a higher resolution, which again is then downscaled to 1080p.

But it is not "true" 4K, and using actual 4K or 2K on a 1080P monitor is not possible.
Yes, the games i play does have a render option but everytime I enable it, it doesn't increase image quality but only decreases FPS.
 

MadsModsat

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Try to disable AA / FXAA - AA blurres the image, and increasing the resolution scale, should smoothe out the edges as well (which what AA is for), so I normally don't use any type of AA while running a higher resolution scale.

Disabling AA / FXAA also puts less workload on the GPU, so you can increase the resolution scale a bit more
 
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May 3, 2020
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Try to disable AA / FXAA - AA blurres the image, and increasing the resolution scale, should smoothe out the edges as well (which what AA is for), so I normally don't use any type of AA while running a higher resolution scale.

Disabling AA / FXAA also puts less workload on the GPU, so you can increase the resolution scale a bit more
Do i turn on SMAA?
 

MadsModsat

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Oh so do I need to disable any type of anti Alias to get the better image quality?
Yes, (some) anti alias options blurres out the image to varying degrees depending on what type of AA you apply.

Increasing the resolution scale, should also reduce aliasing, so I personally don't use both at the same time (AA + increased resolution scale), to avoid AA blurring the (hopefully) increased image quality when increasing the resolution scale.

But you'll never get the same visual quality as true 4K on a 1080p monitor, that's not possible.

But the visual quality should improve slightly

EDIT : Technically, increasing the render resolution, is also a type of AA, I sometimes forget.
 
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May 3, 2020
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Yes, anti alias options blurres out the image to varying degrees depending on what type of AA you apply.

Increasing the resolution scale, should also reduce aliasing, so I personally don't use both at the same time (AA + increased resolution scale), to avoid AA blurring the (hopefully) increased image quality when increasing the resolution scale.

But you'll never get the same visual quality as true 4K on a 1080p monitor, that's not possible.
Thank you so much man!
 

MadsModsat

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Thank you so much man!
Anisotrophic Filtering x16 usually doesn't put too much add'ed stress on the GPU, and helps sharpen the textures - you could try adding that, along with the increased resolution scale setting you choose.

I've set my Nvidia driver to "force" x16 Anisotrophic Filtering to all my games. It can be done in-game as well.

If x16 is too much for the GPU, you could try x8
 
May 3, 2020
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Anisotrophic Filtering x16 doesn't put too much add'ed stress on the GPU, and helps sharpen the textures - you could try adding that, along with the increased resolution scale setting you choose.

I've set my Nvidia driver to "force" x16 Anisotrophic Filtering to all my games. It can be done in-game as well.
Too be honest the difference between 1080p render option and 4k render option isn't that much. Can you notice any difference?
 

MadsModsat

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Too be honest the difference between 1080p render option and 4k render option isn't that much. Can you notice any difference?
Nope, there's only a slight difference. And I already play at 1440p, so there's not really much reason to do it.

They way I look at it personally, if a game I play exceeds the 144Hz refresh rate of my monitor, with the graphics options maxed out, I increase the resolution scale, until the max FPS doesn't exceed my monitors refresh rate, but hover around the max refresh rate.

It is not much of a visual difference, but at least I get the best performance and visual quality which fits my setup.

I rarely apply MSAA or FXAA to any games, since it is rarely necessary at 1440p (in my opinion), so when I use the resolution scale options / increasing the resolution scale, it does help smoothe out the edges a bit more in some games.

I prefer super sampling over FXAA, but MSAA isn't too bad either, in my opinion - but it requires more performance from the GPU, compared to FXAA.

EDIT:

FXAA is fairly easy on the GPU compared to super sampling or MSAA, but to me it looks worse.

In the game Control (with RayTracing on), I actually render the game at 1080p and scale it up to the 1440p native resolution of my monitor. It doesn't look as good as rendering at 1440p, but it adds 30+ FPS.
The game Control, is the only game I render at a lower resolution, because it is very taxing on the GPU with RTX on.
So changing resolution scale both up or down, can be useful for fine tuning performance and visual quality
 
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May 3, 2020
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Nope, there's only a slight difference. And I already play at 1440p, so there's not really much reason to do it.

They way I look at it personally, if a game I play exceeds the 144Hz refresh rate of my monitor, with the graphics options maxed out, I increase the resolution scale, until the max FPS doesn't exceed my monitors refresh rate, but hover around the max refresh rate.

It is not much of a visual difference, but at least I get the best performance and visual quality which fits my setup.

I rarely apply MSAA or FXAA to any games, since it is rarely necessary at 1440p (in my opinion), so when I use the resolution scale options / increasing the resolution scale, it does help smoothe out the edges a bit more in some games.

I prefer super sampling over FXAA, but MSAA isn't too bad either, in my opinion - but it requires more performance from the GPU, compared to FXAA.

EDIT:

FXAA is fairly easy on the GPU compared to super sampling or MSAA, but to me it looks worse.

In the game Control (with RayTracing on), I actually render the game at 1080p and scale it up to the 1440p native resolution of my monitor. It doesn't look as good as rendering at 1440p, but it adds 30+ FPS.
The game Control, is the only game I render at a lower resolution, because it is very taxing on the GPU with RTX on.
Yeah, thank you for explaining all this to me, I appreciate it.
 

MadsModsat

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Yeah, thank you for explaining all this to me, I appreciate it.
I think there are some other users on here, who would be much better at explaining the correct technical terms than I am, so I did try to avoid going too much into detail.

I used to have a great link to a site explaining AA in detail, with images clearly showing the differences, but I seem to have lost the bookmark
 
May 3, 2020
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I think there are some other users on here, who would be much better at explaining the correct technical terms than I am, so I did try to avoid going too much into detail.

I used to have a great link to a site explaining AA in detail, with images clearly showing the differences, but I seem to have lost the bookmark
It's fine you explained it clearly and a lot of details.
 
The reason it doesn't improve the image quality much is because the screen only has so many physical pixels to display the image with. In the case of a 1080p screen, it's a grid of 1920 x 1080, or under 2.1 million pixels. On a 1440p screen, there's just under 3.7 million pixels, and 4K has about 8.3 million pixels, or four times the number of dots that make up the image compared to a 1080p display.

You can render a game at 4K and downsample it to display on a 1080p screen, but every four adjacent pixels are getting merged into one in the process, so while things might look a little smoother, they won't look any sharper.
 

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