I just bought a new Dell external display (U2312hm) for my MacBook Pro Retina.

The fonts appear to be very blurry. I've searched and found a solution here, but it didn't fix my problem. I ran the script supplied in the thread, followed all instructions and the problem remains (tried on 2 different rMBPs with 2 different U2312hm monitors).

here are real a few examples (the upper browser in each picture is chrome on VMware and the lower is chrome on OSX 10.8.5): enter image description here enter image description here

I tried different font smoothing configurations which failed to improve the problem. I tried using Apple's MiniDisplayPort to AVI and MiniDisplayPort to DisplayPort cables - no change.

What can I do?

  • 7
    Awful choice of sample page for the second sample; couldn't you have found something less unpleasant?
    – Chelonian
    Commented Jun 24, 2014 at 15:31
  • @YSY: did you fix the problem? Commented Jan 19, 2017 at 21:27

6 Answers 6


The solution at http://embdev.net/topic/284710 worked for me.

Attach your display, download the updated patch-edid.rb, run ruby patch-edid.rb in Terminal and reboot. Voila!

Tested and working on both Mountain Lion and Mavericks with two U2713H monitors.

  • as I written in the post, this solution doesn't affect the font appearance. the problem remains.
    – YSY
    Commented Oct 24, 2013 at 12:18

Horray! I found a solution.

I bought the Apple Mini DisplayPort to DVI converter cable adapter instead of using HDMI, and my picture is much more crisp and clear.

enter image description here

My Retina display is still better, but it's a better screen. my HP monitor is now performing to is ability. For some reason, HDMI must degrade the video quality.

  • This also worked for me. I did not think that there would be a difference between Mini DisplayPort and HDMI. When it comes to connecting a MacbookPro, I guess there is a big difference. The font rendering is still not as crisp as my Ubuntu machine renders on the same monitor, but when comparing the same screen connected to Mini DisplayPort and HDMI, Mini DisplayPort is the clear winner. Commented Sep 22, 2014 at 17:18
  • How about an HDMI to DVI adapter? Is it the DVI connection that makes the difference? Or is it the display port connection? It's an important distinction because HDMI to DVI is ~$4 and an Apple-sanctified DisplayPort to DVI is ~$40
    – Synesso
    Commented Apr 9, 2016 at 9:50

Are you using the "Best Resolution for display" setting for the external monitor? I was forcing 1920x1080 and seeing a similar fuzzy look. I changed from the fixed resolution to Best Resolution (even tough they are the same), and my fonts are now smooth on my Viewsonic (at work) and my HP (at home) 24" monitors.

  • I'm using "Best for display" and still have this problem, I will add a photo to show the problem.
    – YSY
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 13:06

Have you tried toggling Use LCD Font Smoothing off and rebooting? To my eyes, it makes fonts on non-Retina displays look super thick and somewhat blurry, not unlike your photos. It's in System Preferences → General:

LCD Font Smoothing http://static.command-tab.com/2013/lcd-font-smoothing.png

  • I just took this exact screen shot..!
    – beroe
    Commented Oct 21, 2013 at 20:15
  • unfortunately this setting did not fix the problem (tried changing to bigger font sizes too).
    – YSY
    Commented Oct 22, 2013 at 8:03

HDMI did not work for me but the Apple Mini DisplayPort to DVI converter cable adapter worked perfectly! with a HP Pavilion 25bw


Image here shows a web page from Internet Explorer (top, on Parallels) and on OSX Chrome (Below). enter image description here

The problem you saw was not really a problem. It was the different way which Windows and OSX render their fonts (aliasing). Some people prefer Windows's sharp font, others prefer OSX style.

I hope I understood your problem correctly because what you showed in the image(not clear, not a screen capture but from a camera) was what I have noticed before.

See here for a comparison on the two algorithms for aliasing fonts.

  • 1
    This isn't the problem being described. I know very well the differences in font rendering between the Mac OS X and Windows platforms. What's actually happening is a problem with the signal sent from the Mac to the monitor. The Mac is using the wrong color space, and it screws up font rendering, somehow. Forcing the color space to RGB, by using the patch-edid.rb script, has completely altered the font rendering on my external display, from "crunchy" to smooth. Good explanation here: ireckon.net/2013/03/…
    – Alderete
    Commented Apr 22, 2014 at 10:15

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