Blurry custom background for OSMC Skin

First of all, just want to say that I really like the new and improved OSMC Skin. I was previously using Pellucid and while I really loved the clean, streamlined look of that skin, I had performance/lagging issues while navigating my Movie library (and I don’t have a huge number of titles). Switching to the OSMC Skin resolved that issue immediately!

I have followed the steps here to configure the Skin and menus to my liking. I also set a custom background image (similarly to how I had Pellucid setup). However, I notice that the background image is blurry/unfocused. Looking through the Skin How To, I can’t find anything related to adjusting this.

Searching through existing topics I came across this thread. Is this the solution I’d be looking for? If so I notice that darwindesign mentions that implementing the solution discussed there might slow down the UI, which I don’t want.

If that is not the solution, is there something else I can do to adjust the clarity of the custom background image? The resolution of the image I’m using is 4896 x 3672. Not sure if it helps, but here are debug logs with all my settings etc.

Thanks in advance :slightly_smiling_face:

Im glad you like the OSMC Skin! :slightly_smiling_face: I’m working constantly on improving it.

We don’t recommend setting your GUI to 4K resolution as it’s sowing down the device and neither the Kodi skin engine nor any skin we’re aware of (including the OSMC skin) have been optimized for 4K resolution. You’ll have a way better experience setting your GUI resolution to 1080p and letting your TV/projector do the upscaling.

Why your background image looks unfocused though is beyond me. Maybe downscaling it to 1080p manually, saving it to a new file and then setting it as background again, might help?

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Thank you for your work and improvements, and also for the clear documentation :slightly_smiling_face:! It was very easy to follow.

Thank you for that. I’m pretty sure that my GUI resolution is set to 1080p and I will leave it at that.

Thank you for that suggestion. I will try downscaling the image to 1080p manually and report back

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It is

Downscaling on a PC will likely give better results than letting Kodi do it as it is optimized for speed over quality. This will also give you control over cropping it from a 4:3 to a 16:9 aspect ratio. If your not going to make the advancedsettings.xml change I outlines in that other thread you will need to size it as 1280x720 to keep Kodi from scaling it again. I would also suggest to save the file as a PNG.

If you do decide to try the tweak then you will want to resize to 1920x1080. I run my own setup this way and I don’t see any great impact from doing so (and I removed my old cache so everything is using the higher resolutions).

Thank you! That has improved the clarity of the image :slightly_smiling_face:

Yep, I’m keen to give this a crack. Thanks I’ll try it tonight after work. I understand that the changes to the advancedsettings.xml override the cache settings. But I’m not sure I understand what you mean when you said

Is there an additional step I need to do to clear out the old cache?

When Kodi goes to access an image it looks for it in the cache first. If not found in the cache it then grabs the image, resizes it if needed, then saves it to your .kodi/userdata/thumbnails/ folder. If you add a new thumbnail size in your advancedsettings.xml this will only affect any new images that get cached. In the case of the background image you can just give it a new name and then set this new renamed image as the background. If you wanted ALL your existing artwork to be re-cached to the newer higher resolution setting then you would need to either delete the thumbnails folder or learn how to use the texture cache maintenance utility and use that to force a re-cache of all artwork. The former is faster to do, the latter a way to make all your library get cached at the same time instead of on the fly as you access the first time.

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Thank you! I went with your first suggestion and cached on the fly the first time. Everything seemed to work. My background is now no longer blurry/unfocused and other artwork resolution has improved too. Though paying really close attention, I would have to say that I have noticed an ever so slight lag now in navigating movies etc. Is this in line with your experience @darwindesign?

Big thank you to @Chillbo and @darwindesign for your help and comments :slightly_smiling_face:

There may have been a small decrease in speed but I can’t honestly say that I noticed it when I switched it over to that resolution on my RPi 3B+ or Vero. There is not actually all that big of a difference in the actual file size and I doubt there is much of a difference in the time it takes to decompress either. It is actually a bit tricky to compare as there can be some weird lags in how Kodi loads images on some screens so if you start paying too much attention it can be easy to associate delays to the wrong thing. I did test it once by cloning a profile and forcing a re-cache so I could log right into two setups the same other than the artwork size. They seemed to perform the same.

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That’s a great and very valid point. And to be honest, I was wondering whether I was imagining it, which is why I was keen to see what your experience had been/is.

Really appreciate the responses in this thread. And I’m very happy with the resolution/result. You guys have been an awesome help :slightly_smiling_face:

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