Blurred internet in OS X
August 10, 2002 5:31PM
edited January 2014
The net looks great in OS9.2.2 but when I switch to OSX 1.5 it's as if I've taken my glasses off .... blurred fonts for example. DVD looks great in OS X - but the net? .....
Reply 1 of 14
August 10, 2002 5:41PM
I believe it may be because the fonts are antialiased. This reduces jaggies (the visible steps seen on diagonal lines) but introduces some fuzziness.
Reply 2 of 14
August 10, 2002 5:51PM
Give me jaggies any day!! It just seems to turn a gorgeous screen into a "manager's bargain" piece of ...... well you know what I mean.
Reply 3 of 14
August 10, 2002 6:06PM
Er... just so we're clear on this (no pun intended)...
There is no 'net'.
What you *mean* to say is "fonts are blurry in my *browser*" Big, big difference. Saying 'the net is blurry' makes about zero real sense. But we know what you meant anyway.
There is a way to turn off anti-aliasing for most situations in your web browser, however.
Open your System Preferences. Click on 'General', the third item on the first row. At the bottom, you'll see 'Turn off font smoothing for...' select the 12pt size from the pop up menu. This will, as you might guess, turn off smoothing for most text you'll run across.
Also, IE's smoothing is distinctly sub-par to OmniWeb's. (IE uses QuickDraw's anti-aliasing, OmniWeb uses Quartz's.)
And further, 10.2 brings more fine tuning on the font smoothing, particularly for LCD screens. Smoothing looks really nice on CRTs, but loses something on LCD screens.
Reply 4 of 14
August 10, 2002 6:24PM
Thanks for that. It does seem a little odd that at a time when Apple are trying to win over PC folk and most of their machines are LCD with Internet Explorer loaded, they expect the consumer user to tweek their expensive computer simply to make the internet look as it should.
I've always bought macs for their stability in music apps, but this would have put me right off were I a consumer seeking a home computer.
Reply 5 of 14
August 10, 2002 7:03PM
Another way to turn off text smoothing in IE:
Go to Preferences, click on Interface Extras, then click on the checkbox for "Enable Quartz text smoothing".
Reply 6 of 14
August 10, 2002 7:05PM
Oh duh, right. I forgot MS added that option in later builds. (Haven't used IE since 10.0, for precisely these sort of problems...)
But, it's not a case of 'making the internet look as it should'... it's a case of the font smoothing technology not being optimized for LCD screens. *ALL* your text is subject to it, system wide.
If it's just in IE that's the problem, then **it is IE's problem**, and that's exactly what's going on. IE's font smoothing is nonstandard. Period.
The *ONLY* thing that Apple has control over here, *maybe* is to have the default IE installation have Quartz font smoothing turned on by default... but that is probably subject to all sorts of interesting licensing restrictions that have to be negotiated with MS.
Blame MS, and the MBU. They wrote IE, they set up the substandard default setting. (Not like they're known for doing *that*...)
Now, if you see a problem *everywhere*, then *that* is subject to Apple's doing, and is rightly placed in their lap. (But it doesn't sound like that's the problem, from your description.)
Place the blame where the responsibility lies, otherwise it'll never get fixed correctly.
For instance: because a lot of folks don't like the way font smoothing works on LCDs (although it seems to be universally appreciated on CRTs), 10.2 has selectable levels of font smoothing using various algorithm settings for CRTs, LCDs, and whatever looks best to the user. That's responding to user input, and providing a correct fix. Now if MS would only do the same... by say, making Quartz font smoothing the default, at the very least.
[ 08-10-2002: Message edited by: Kickaha ]</p>
Reply 7 of 14
August 10, 2002 9:43PM
Mozilla and Omniweb are also anti-aliased, but manage to do it much better than IE does, so it doesn't look bad.
Reply 8 of 14
August 10, 2002 9:46PM
[quote]Originally posted by rogue27:
<strong>Mozilla and Omniweb are also anti-aliased, but manage to do it much better than IE does, so it doesn't look bad.</strong><hr></blockquote>
Correct - they use the Quartz anti-aliasing.
IE, by default, does not, and didn't at all for quite some time.
Reply 9 of 14
August 10, 2002 10:01PM
The options for adjusting antialiasing in 10.2 help a lot, I have an LCD and when I upgraded to the version of IE that had font antialiasing, I also got Silk at the same time, and this looked like crap. I got rid of Silk and started using OmniWeb more often. The option to set antialiasing to 'Best for LCD' works amazingly.
Reply 10 of 14
August 10, 2002 10:18PM
Right about 10.2 antialiasing on LCDs: It's yucking GREAT!
IE on 10.0 had _no_ antialiasing at all, which is really bad for a person like me who likes typography.
So the people with problems with blurry fonts (although I don't understand that, it's much more readable than with the jaggies...) just wait for 10.2.
Btw.: The 'net' _is_ blurred most of the time.
Reply 11 of 14
August 10, 2002 10:48PM
[quote]Originally posted by ajaysongs:
<strong>Thanks for that. It does seem a little odd that at a time when Apple are trying to win over PC folk and most of their machines are LCD with Internet Explorer loaded, they expect the consumer user to tweek their expensive computer simply to make the internet look as it should.
I've always bought macs for their stability in music apps, but this would have put me right off were I a consumer seeking a home computer.</strong><hr></blockquote>
Most people like the anti-aliased text. Windows XP has AA text too. But MS's font prefs are system-wide. (the fact that Apple has two API's Carbon and Cocoa is the culprit here). And MS's font smoothing is called 'Clear Type'. I find that sometimes I like it and sometimes I don't. I swing back and forth in that respect. Right now I have no AA text in XP.
Reply 12 of 14
August 11, 2002 1:57AM
Jaguar actually lets you set system-wide antialiasing, and it lets you do it based on what type of display you have. Heavier antialiasing for TFT flat screens, lighter for CRTs. It looks fabulous on my flat panel iMac.
And I agree, IE looks pretty bad compared to Omniweb and Opera. And Chimera is my favorite browser right now.
Reply 13 of 14
August 11, 2002 2:27AM
[quote]Originally posted by pyr3:
Most people like the anti-aliased text. Windows XP has AA text too. But MS's font prefs are system-wide. (the fact that Apple has two API's Carbon and Cocoa is the culprit here).</strong><hr></blockquote>
Actually, that's not quite true... it's because of two different AA technologies, not the two major APIs.
Carbon and Cocoa can *both* use the Quartz font smoothing, (witness the option in IE to change between the two), but some older apps haven't been updated to use Quartz AA, and instead are still lagging behind with the QuickDraw AA.
Again, go bug the crap out of the developers, and tell them to get their butts in gear.
Reply 14 of 14
August 11, 2002 6:24AM
about 10.2 Antialiasing:
I have two monitors, a CRT and a LCD. what happens with 10.2 ? Will it display a different AA for each screen, or will one of them be blurry ?