do screensavers really save the screen

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by fjs08, Dec 29, 2005.

  1. fjs08 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
    #1
    Hi,

    I have an Apple Cinema monitor, 20" that's 2.5 yrs old. I love it. It's hooked up to a Ti-Book. I always use the Cinema Monitor at home, and the Powerbook screen at the office. I was having a discussion about putting the computer to sleep when I'm not using it vs letting a screen saver come on. Does anyone know which option is better. The Powerbook is plugged in both at home and the office, so there isn't any battery issue here. I'm just wondering does leaving the screen saver on do anything to the computer or either screen??

    Thanks.

    Frank
     
  2. Daveway macrumors 68040

    Daveway

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    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #2
    In the days of CRTs screen savers were more important. Screen savers prevented "burn in" which was an image being burned into the (glass?) when it was on to long.
    Now with LCDs burn in isn't much of an issue anymore and are now mainly for decoration.
     
  3. dsharits macrumors 68000

    dsharits

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    #3
    For LCD's, it's better to turn them off or let them sleep because the backlight's do wear out after time. They gradually grow dimmer as time goes by.
     
  4. fjs08 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 25, 2003
    #4
    >>Now with LCDs burn in isn't much of an issue anymore and are now mainly for decoration.<<

    That's good to know thanks. But does leaving the screen saver do any harm as in lessening the life span of a Cinema Monitor or Powerbook screen. I would think that the screen is being "used" when the screen saver is on?? Not sure though.
    Frank
     
  5. dops7107 macrumors 6502a

    dops7107

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    Perth, Oztrailya
    #5
    I think that's absolutely true. The backlight has a finite lifespan and so any excess usage will shorten the useful life of your monitor. So I use a screensaver for decoration mostly, but then set the LCD to go to sleep after 20 minutes or so. No point leaving it on overnight for certain, and it does waste energy (even if it is only a small amount relative to CRTs).
     
  6. fjs08 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
    #6
    >>No point leaving it on overnight for certain, and it does waste energy (even if it is only a small amount relative to CRTs).<<

    I actually shut my Powerbook OFF every nite. My son thinks I'm nuts. He has a ThinkPad that he leaves on constantly. He puts it to sleep each nite, but never shuts it off completely. He claims he hasn't had any problems and he's had it for about 6 months now. (I can't convert him--yet!!)
    <g>

    I've done it with larger server type computers, but never had the guts to try it with a notebook.

    Frank
     
  7. osprey76 macrumors 6502

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    May 3, 2004
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    Oklahoma City, OK
    #7
    The image would be burned into the phosphor just behind the glass, fyi.
     
  8. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #8
    Just make sure your display turns itself off after awhile. My screen saver kicks in at 10 minutes and my iMac's LCD is off at 20 minutes.
     
  9. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

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    somewhere between here and there.
    #9
    Current generation LCD do not suffer from this problem as the colour will stay vivid and the brightness as well.

    Previous generations LCD (example PowerBook G3) only last for about 5-8 years. The colour on mine is shifting, however not fading. The screen is also getting dimmer. A screen saver would have done nothing for any LCD past or future generation(s).

    It's only included in Mac OS X for the reason being that graphic designer and video producers use CRT screens and that is pretty much the only reason. :)
     
  10. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

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    #10
    Put your screen saver option to "Never." As you already know about the Energy Saver mode to turn off the screen. ;) :)
     
  11. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

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    #11
    Contrary to popular belief, LCDs CAN get 'screen burn-in'. It takes significantly longer than an old CRT, but it can happen. (I've seen a ~four year old laptop that was used as a Point of Sale display get its pixels 'stuck' in a semi-on position for having displayed the same thing for four years straight.)

    Also, on newer (than about 1995,) CRTs, screen burn is also all-but impossible. Screen savers are really just decorations nowadays. It's only on the very early (pre '95,) CRTs that were even at risk. Even then, only monochrome, or low quality color ones had serious risk. I have an Apple 14" Color Display from 1988 that was used continuously for almost fifteen years, with no screen saver, and the menu bar isn't even burned in. (That was the common artifact on the compact Macs, you'd see the menu bar even when the computer was off.)

    And osprey is right. The way CRTs work is they use an electron gun at the back to shoot electrons at the front glass. The back side of the front glass is coated with 'phosphors', a coating that emits light when excited by electrons. This coating is usually a dark gray when not energized. It's these phosphors that would 'burn' due to constant energizing, and be visible even when the monitor was off. It was actually that the specific location would be burned dark, so you'd usually end up with the screen burn in inverse of what was displayed. It also meant that wherever the screen was 'burned' would be dimmer than the rest. (One way to 'fix' screen burn is to display a solid white image constantly for a few weeks. You'd 'burn' the entire screen evenly, usually making the initial 'burn' less noticeable. But it also made the entire screen dimmer.)
     
  12. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

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    #12
    You are only right to the point that this happened with earlier generations of LCD's. :)
     
  13. Laser47 macrumors 6502a

    Laser47

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    Jan 8, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    #13
    Although LCD dont suffer from burn in (generally) Plasmas are a completely different story. Anyone who has been at an airport will agree with me.
     
  14. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #14
    Oh I've seen that warning before. :cool:

    I like my screen saver on for a few minutes though.
     

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