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Resolution is the measure in which how many pixels are displayed on the screen.

For emulation of 2D systems, the resolution can only be upscaled, making the pixels more apparent. For emulation of 5th generation consoles and newer, the internal resolution can be increased to make the game look sharper.

Console Resolutions[edit]

System Native Resolution Color depth and color space Number Of Pixels Native Refresh Rate (Hz)
Atari 2600 160×192[N 1] 128 colors, Color/Luminance 192p 59.922751013551 (NTSC), 49.860759671615 (PAL)
NES 256×240 52 colors, Color/Luminance[N 2] 240p 60.098813897441 (NTSC), 50.006978908189 (PAL)
Sega Master System 256×192, 256×224, 256x240 (some PAL games) 64 colors, RGB 192p, 224p, 240p 59.922751013551 (NTSC), 49.701460119948 (PAL)
SNES 256×224p, 256×239p, 512×224p, 512×239p

512×448i, 512×478i

15-bit, RGB 224p, 240p, 480i 60.098813897441 (NTSC), 50.006978908189 (PAL)
Virtual Boy 384×224 (per screen) 4 shades of red 224p 50.273487773488
Sega Genesis 320×224, 256×224, 320x240 (some PAL games), 256x240 (some PAL games),

320×448, 256×448, 320x480 (some PAL games), 256x480 (some PAL games)

512 colors, RGB 224p, 240p, 480i 59.922751013551 (NTSC), 49.701460119948 (PAL)
Game Boy/Color 160×144 15-bit, RGB (4 shades of grey for non-color games) 144p 59.727500569606
Sega Game Gear 160x144 4096 colors, RGB (64 color in SMS backwards compatibility mode) 144p 59.922751013551
Nintendo 64 320x200, 320x240, 640×240, 640×480[N 3] 15-bit/21-bit, RGB[N 4] 240p, 480i, (NTSC), 576i (PAL) 60 (NTSC), 50 (PAL)[N 5]
Sega Saturn 320×224p, 320×240p, 320×256p, 352×224p, 352×240p, 352×256p, 640×224p, 640×240p, 640×256p, 704×240p

320×448i, 320×512i, 320×480i, 352×448i, 320×480i, 352×512i, 640×448i, 640×480i, 640×512i, 704×448i, 704×480i, 704×512i

15-bit/24-bit, RGB 224p, 240p, 480i 60 (NTSC), 50 (PAL)[N 5]
PlayStation 256×224p, 256x240p, 320x224p, 320×240p, 512x224p, 512×240p, 640x224p, 640x240p

256x448i, 256x480i, 320x448i, 320x480i, 370x448i, 370x480i, 512x448i, 512x480i, 640x448i, 640×480i

16-bit/24-bit, RGB[N 6] 224p, 240p, 480i 59.940060138702 (NTSC), 50.00028192997 (PAL)
WonderSwan 224×144 4096 colors, RGB 144p 75.471698113207
Game Boy Advance 240×160 15-bit, RGB 160p 59.727500569606
Pokémon Mini 96×64 1-bit monochrome ? N/A
PlayStation 2 512×224 512x240 512×448 512x480

640x224 640x240 640x448 640×480 800x600 1024x768 1280x1024

24-bit, RGB 224p, 240p, 480i (NTSC), 480p (NTSC), 576i (PAL), 576p (PAL), 720p, 1080i 60 (NTSC), 50 (PAL)[N 5]
Sega Dreamcast 640×480

800x608 1024x768 1280x1024 1600x1200

24-bit, RGB 240p, 480i (NTSC), 480p (NTSC), 576i (PAL), 576p (PAL), 720p 60 (NTSC), 50 (PAL)[N 5]
GameCube and Wii 596×448

608×456 640×480[N 7] etc

24-bit, RGB 240p, 480i (NTSC), 480p (NTSC), 576i (PAL), 576p (PAL), 720p, 960i 60 (NTSC), 50 (PAL)[N 5]
Nintendo DS 256×192 (per screen) 18-bit, RGB 192p 59.826098288081
PlayStation Portable 480×272 24-bit, RGB 272p 60[N 5]
Nintendo 3DS 800x240 top screen[N 8]

320x240 bottom screen

24-bit, RGB 240p 60[N 5]
  1. This is a rough figure given for simplicity's sake. In reality, the Atari 2600 doesn't really output pixels, and it has no limits on the number of lines it can display. However, it did have a hard limit on the number of horizontal color clocks for drawing the picture (160), and most games only output 192 lines, hence the commonly given resolution of 160x192.
  2. The NES has a 6-bit palette, but not all of the 64 possible entries maps to unique colors.
  3. While N64 games ran at various resolutions internally, in practice the hardware's VI component always doubled the scale horizontally, and output in either 640x240p or 640x480i, though there is letterboxing at times.
  4. The N64 can use either either 18-bit (15 bits of RGB and 3 bits of alpha) or 32-bit framebuffer, however the DAC is only capable of outputting 21-bit RGB
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 Preliminary or approximate value.
  6. The PSX can use a 16-bit or 24-bit framebuffer, however most of the GPU's commands can only render onto a 16-bit framebuffer
  7. Similar to N64, games ran at various resolutions internally[1], though output is usually in 480p.
  8. This is the "true" resolution of the top screen and what games will be rendered at in full 3d mode, however, due to said 3d effect the horizontal resolution is effectively halved. Each eye will only see 400x240 and games run in 2d mode will (normally) be rendered at 400x240 [2].

Integer Scaling[edit]

Main article: Scaling

Upscaling the resolution will only look good if you scale it by integers (2x, 3x, 4x, etc.). If you are scaling with non-integers, you can make the image look better using the Pixellate shader.

External links[edit]

Wikipedia - List of common resolutions: Analog systems