Today we bring you a small guide to the screen resolutions and abbreviations we use when talking about them. Therefore, if you ever read terms such as there is an SD or UXGA resolution, you will know exactly what they refer to with each of these and all the others that are usually used.
We’re going to try to make it as easy as possible, and to do that we’re going to use a table format so you can find out who’s who right away. But first, we’ll also take the opportunity to explain exactly what screen resolution is and what it means for you if your monitor or TV has one or the other.
What is Screen Resolution?
Screen resolution is the total number of pixels that can be displayed on the screen of a computer monitor, television, mobile phone or tablet, and ultimately any device that has a screen. All devices have a specific resolution on their screens, and the resolution of the videos you can reach will depend on it.
The numbers of the pixels or the nomenclatures we use to refer to them are almost always the same on the screens and in the videos. This is useful because a screen can’t take advantage of the highest quality in a video with a higher resolution. If you’re watching a 4K video and your screen is simply Full HD, you can always watch the video at full HD resolution.
When referring to resolutions, we usually use two numbers, such as 1920 x 1080, which indicate the number of pixels displayed on the screen. The first of these numbers tells you the number of horizontal pixels that are seen on a screen, and the second number indicates the vertical pixels.
When referring to specific resolutions, such as the aforementioned 1920 x 1080 resolution, we usually shorten by mentioning only the vertical pixels. This way, when you hear or read about 1080p screens somewhere, you’ll know that they refer to 1920 x 1080 pixel resolutions, also known as Full HD or FHD. Full HD resolution.
As for the total number of pixels shown on a screen, you only have to do the operation of the horizontals by the verticals. For example, a 1080p screen has 1920 x 1080 pixels, which means it displays a total of 2073,600 pixels. However, this total figure is never normally used when referring to one or another resolution.
In addition to the resolution, it is also important to note that there are different screen formats. The screen format is the ratio of horizontal and vertical pixels, and some of the most common are 3:2, 4:3, and 16:10. The more difference there is between width and height, the more flattened or stretched the screen will be.
Finally, you also need to know that the more pixels a screen displays, the better the resolution. A higher pixel density will mean that you can display much more detail in a single video. So when you look at some old video, you’ll immediately notice how it looks blurrier than today’s videos – that’s because of the resolution.
Also, the higher the maximum resolution of a screen, the more power it is going to take in the hardware to be able to move videos at those resolutions. That’s why, for example in the world of mobile phones, a 4K resolution screen can show incredible detail, but also consume a lot of battery power. That’s why it’s not that common to see them either.
Top HD Resolutions
Let’s start with the easy stuff, with the main standards in resolutions you’ll find today, now that high-resolution HD formats are a matter of course. They’re the names you’ll see almost everywhere, so it’s important to know them.
|SD||Standard Definition||640 x 480 pixels||One of the first low-resolution standards. Also known as VGA, but SD is a more widely used name now.|
|QHD||Quarter of High Definition||960 x 540 pixels||It literally means a high definition room, and has been used in low range devices|
|HD||High Definition||1,280 x 720 pixels||It is the first high-resolution standard, and is also known as 720p. It does not become full high definition, but it is like a widely used previous step. It is like the first resolution considered HD.|
|FHD||Full HD or Full High Definition||1,920 x 1,080 pixels||Also known as 1080p, it is the total high definition standard.|
|QHD||Quad High Definition||2,560 x 1,440 pixels||It is also known as 1440p or 2K, and it is a standard widely used in smartphones that want to go a little beyond Full HD.|
|UHD||Ultra High Definition||3,840 x 2,160 pixels||This is the famous 4K, which you can also find as 2160p. It is a high-resolution standard far superior to Full HD, and one that is slowly starting to become normal in medium and high-range televisions.|
|UHD 8K||Ultra High Definition 8K||7,680 × 4,320 pixels||The 8K or 4320p is the maximum resolution standard that is beginning to be seen more and more on televisions of higher ranges. It aspires to be the successor to 4K.|
And then there are all the other nomenclatures you can find in other VGA-based resolutions, which predate the popularity of HD resolutions. There are a lot of variations, but we’ve tried to bring you some of the most representative ones.
|QVGA||Quarter Video Graphics Array||320 x 240 pixels||One of the lowest resolutions you can find in Internet videos. Except for devices such as the old Nintendo 3DS, they are no longer used.|
|VGA||Video Graphics Array||640 x 480 pixels||One of the first resolution standards that existed before the advent of HD resolutions. Except for very old monitors and televisions, it is difficult to find them.|
|FWVGA||Full Wide Video Graphics Array||854 x 480 pixels||A resolution similar to VGA, but with a ratio with more width. It was used in many older low-end mobiles.|
|SVGA||Super Video Graphics Array or Super VGA||800 x 600 pixels||It was one of the successors to the VGA. It is not yet considered HD, but it was the previous step.|
|WSVGA||Wide Super VGA||1,024 x 576 pixels||An alternative with a more stretched ratio that was also seen in|
|XGA||Extended Graphics Array||1,024 x 768 pixels||A standard that came as an evolution of the Super VGA.|
|WXGA||Wide Extended Graphics Array||1280 × 800, 1,360 x 768 and 1,366 x 768 pixels||This nomenclature encompasses three different types of HD resolutions, and is still used today in lower-range LCD televisions and monitors.|
|XGA +||Extended Graphics Array Plus||1,152 × 864 pixels||Until the advent of wide-screen LCDs, it was often used in 17-inch desktop CRT monitors.|
|WXGA + OR WSXGA||Wide Extended Graphics Array Plus or Widescreen Super Extended Graphics Array||1,440 × 900 pixels||A resolution that can be seen on 19-inch widescreen desktop monitors.|
|SXGA||Super Extended Graphics Array||1,280 x 1,024 pixels||An evolution of the XGA that was halfway between that and Full HD that ended up settling.|
|SXGA +||Super Extended Graphics Array Plus||1,400 × 1,050 pixels||A standard used in some 14- and 15-inch laptops.|
|WSXGA +||Widescreen Super Extended Graphics Array Plus||1,680 × 1,050 pixels||It was commonly used in 20, 21 and 22-inch widescreen LCD monitors from numerous manufacturers.|
|UXGA OR UGA||Ultra Extended Graphics Array||1,600 × 1,200 pixels||It is exactly four times the resolution of the SVGA, and has been the native resolution of many 15-inch or larger monitors.|
|WUXGA||Widescreen Ultra Extended Graphics Array||1,920 × 1,200 pixels||It is a wider version of UXGA for monitors 16:10|
|QWXGA||Quad Wide Extended Graphics Array||2,048 × 1,152 pixels||It was used by some 16: 9 LCD monitors with 23- and 27-inch displays in 2009.|
|QXGA||Quad Extended Graphics Array||2,048 × 1,536 pixels||The name is because it has four times more pixels than the XGA. It was used on some monitors that are no longer manufactured.|
|WQXGA||Wide Quad Extended Graphics Array||2,560 × 1,600 pixels||A version of the previous one for 16:10 monitors. Companies like Apple have long been betting on it, with devices such as the 2018 MacBook Air|
|WQUXGA||Wide Quad Ultra Extended Graphics Array||3,840 × 2,400||Exactly four times more pixels than WUXGA. You can find it on some high-end LCD televisions and monitors.|
|HXGA||Hexadecatuple Extended Graphics Array||4,096 x 3,072||A very powerful HD resolution, some confuse it with 4K for having more than 4,000 pixels.|