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Tutorial: Forcing Custom Resolution in Windows

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  • Tutorial: Forcing Custom Resolution in Windows

    In case this has not been covered here, I am posting this for the benefit of everyone. I'll add an appendix or additional information if needed to a certain extent.

    DISCLAIMER - Do this at your own risk! The forum owners, moderators, myself, nor anyone else can be held responsible if this causes ill effects or damage to your software setup, OS setup, or hardware. Changing configurations in the Windows Registry (Regedit) can be dangerous if improper settings are used and should be done only by someone that knows how to work within Registry Editor. Damage to your monitor may result from setting resolution, color depth, and/or refresh rate higher than the monitorís capabilities. Improper settings in other areas of the Registry not covered by this tutorial may result in your OS not functioning properly or unable to boot to Windows


    Monitor resolution, color depth, and refresh rate available in the Display Properties are defined per the drivers for the video card. From there PnP or the system administrator may limit higher options that the monitor does not support to prevent accidentally changing a setting that may potentially damage a monitor or force the monitor to turn off to protect the hardware. The driver for the video card generally only sets standard 4:3 resolutions (640x480, 800x600, 1024x768, etc.) and doesnít normally set 16:9 resolutions (800x450, 1024x576, 1280x720, etc. ) or 16:10 resolutions (800x500, 1280x800,1680x1050, etc.).

    This document describes the process of defining a custom resolution within Windows and can be used to define the native resolution for a monitor that does not natively display a 4:3 aspect ratio.

    Access Requirements:
    You must have Administrator access to the machine to make these changes.

    1. Click on Start, then Run
    2. Type in regedit in the Open box, then hit [Enter]
    3. Expand down to HKEY_CURRENT_CONFIG\System\CurrentControlSet\Contr ol\VIDEO\{Hexadecimal number for your primary video card}\0000
      • Note: Under VIDEO will be one or more registry keys that have a long hexadecimal number; this is the Hexidecimal number assigned to a specific physical or logical video card. There may be more than one if video cards have been changed or a major driver update has been performed. The key that has the current setting should be the one that needs to be modified.
    4. Double-click DefautlSettings.XResolution, change the Base from Hexadecimal to Decimal notation, and set the X axis.
    5. Double-click DefautlSettings.YResolution, change the Base from Hexadecimal to Decimal notation, and set the Y axis.
    6. Reboot
    • Note: If settings did not take effect, modify a different video card in the registry
    • Note: If monitor ceases to function upon Windows coming up, reboot and go to Safe Mode. Pull up the registry and change the settings that were last modified back to the way it was or change the resolution to a safe resolution such as 640x480.

  • #2
    Thanks for the information.

    However, the biggest problem is that many people are using VIA Epia boards, which do not, via ANY means, support custom resolutions. Either added via drivers, PowerStrip or natively in Regedit (all do pretty much the same thing, some with more automation than others)

    It's worth a try, but don't get your hopes up.

    Co-Developer of A.I.M.E.E


    • #3
      When I get my hands on a EPIA motherboard, I'll check it out. I hate to think this wouldn't work with the intergrated video. Well it's nothing a sledgehammer couldn't fix.


      • #4

        I have windows 7 running and I could not get this to work.
        I went into the registry, and this is what I see:

        There is no Hexadecimal number listed under Video, all I see is (Default) on the right hand side.

        I tried adding the X and Y values under (Default), but that did not work.

        Could you please help. My native resolution is 800X480 and it is not listed under Windows Screen properties.

        2005 Nissan Altima - Completed 2007
        2010 Nissan Altima - Coming Soon...


        • #5
          Ever get this to work for Win 7?
          2005 Infiniti G35 6MT Coupe Black/Black
          Core Duo CarPC
          CarDomain page


          • #6
            Win 7 - try right click on desktop, Screen Resolution, Advanced Settings, List All Modes. If you don't have it set on the auto accept and it doesn't work, it will revert in 15 seconds.


            • #7
              Worked! Thanks, I appreciate it
              2005 Infiniti G35 6MT Coupe Black/Black
              Core Duo CarPC
              CarDomain page