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Microsoft Dropping HD Lock for Xbox 360?

David Jefferies from development studio Black Rock Studios is suggesting that Microsoft has dropped the requirement to create Xbox 360 games locked at 1280 x 720. He mentioned this revelation in a recent blog, talking about LCD resolutions and how many now support 1366 x 768. The evidence he presented made sense: the LCD monitor will rescale the 1280 x 720 image using 2xMSAA to fit the larger size, thus showing a lower-quality picture.

"By asserting that screen resolution is more important than anti-aliasing we’re leaving ourselves vulnerable when the customer’s LCD decides it’s going to rescale the image to a new resolution anyway," he said. "If we instead assume that the LCD is going to rescale then, for some games, it might be more sensible to present it with a better anti-aliased but lower resolution image in the first place."

Jefferies said that the team currently uses 26-inch widescreen Sony Bravia LCD TVs. They chose those particular TVs not only because of their popularity and image quality, but because they are similar to what BRS expects their customers are currently using. After noticing that the display format provides 1366 x 768, they went online and hunted down 26-inch and 32-inch Sony and Samsung TVs on Amazon, and discovered the same higher resolution.

"It’s is for this reason that Microsoft recently retired the TCR insisting on 1280x720," he said .Now we are free to make the trade-off between resolution and image quality as we see fit."