Spotify Desktop App with HiDPI Scaling in GNOME 3

posted on 2019-11-12 by dotcs

When using a HiDPI screen, such as the MacBook Pro with Retina display, Spotify Desktop may not automatically detect the correct scaling factor. I have noticed issues in my Manjaro installation that runs with GNOME 3 Desktop. Spotify has been installed from the AUR package repository.
The wrong scaling factor leads to very small font size that is hard to read.

$ spotify --version
Spotify version 1.1.10.546.ge08ef575, Copyright (c) 2019, Spotify Ltd
This post refers to the Spotify version mentioned above. The issue may be fixed in future versions.

Fortunately there is an option to force Spotify Desktop to use a (hardcoded) scaling factor. Use the following command and vary the scaling factor in order to find the correct factor first:

spotify --force-device-scale-factor=2
This command forces the Spotify Desktop application to use a fixed scaling factor instead of trying to automatically determine it.

After the correct value has been found, adjust the desktop entry that GNOME uses to when starting the application via its launcher. The file lives in /usr/share/applications/spotify.desktop:

[Desktop Entry]
Type=Application
Name=Spotify
GenericName=Music Player
Icon=spotify-client
TryExec=spotify
Exec=spotify --force-device-scale-factor=2 %U
Terminal=false
MimeType=x-scheme-handler/spotify;
Categories=Audio;Music;Player;AudioVideo;
StartupWMClass=spotify

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