15" MacBook Pro Anti-Glare - Moving Images Causes Grainyness

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by kolax, Sep 23, 2009.

  1. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    So I finally got round to getting a 15" MBP with anti-glare display, however there is one issue that is really irritating. Basically, anything that moves on the screen has this weird grain/grid over it. It also seems like the backlight is flickering a bit which might be related to grain on a moving image.

    This only happens with moving images. Good example is if I move an icon - looks fine on its own, soon as I move it, the grainy grid appears over it. Not a big deal for an icon, but imagine playing a movie and having that all over it, because that is exactly what happens.

    Anything that moves - whether it be an icon, video, scrolling in Finder, a grainy effect appears over it.

    What should I do...? Anything software related that could be causing this? Or is it a bad display? I've reinstalled OS X, reset PRAM etc..
  2. justaregularjoe macrumors 6502

    Nov 28, 2008
    this sounds very odd. Try switching up to the 9600 and see if the problem continues just for fun, because it might be a bum chip, but also try to do a screen capture and see if it is a problem happening BEFORE the display, thus not a corruption of the display itself. If the grid does not show up in the capture, take some pics/video.
  3. 7even macrumors 6502a

    Jan 11, 2008
    My guess is that it has to do with the AR coating. You can't see the effect on static images because your brain adjusts to it. I saw a similar effect on my Sony Z series a while ago - you could see a faint diagonal texture if you moved your eyes around.
  4. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    Well I just took it back to the Apple Store and exchanged it for another one. This one, exact same model with anti-glare doesn't have this issue.

    Makes me think that the GPU or the screen was playing up on the old one. Ah well, glad that it's all fine now.

    For what it's worth - the dude I spoke to at the Apple Store said if I wasn't happy with it he'd be happy to exchange it, but he was curious as to seeing the issue for himself. After trying to describe it to him, I enlarged the desktop hard drive icon to the biggest, and just dragged it and he saw right away the grainy/chessboard like grid that appeared over it. Cover Flow did the same thing.

    This issue is not on the replacement one, so I guess it was just a lemon..
  5. modular macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2009
    im glad apple was able to take care of it for you. how many days had it been since you bought it btw?
  6. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    1 day.

    I just went in, said I bought this yesterday and I think the screen isn't quite right. Explained what it was, didn't demand a replacement but had he not offered one I'd have winged my way round to asking politely.

    Looked a bit dodgy though - I bought a 17" uMBP on Sunday, returned it on Tuesday for a 15" uMBP, then came back today to swap the 15" uMBP for one that's screen isn't playing up.
  7. Azathoth macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2009
    My guess is maybe a refresh rate thing going on, causing aliasing....
  8. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    It did cross my mind there might have been something up with the refresh rate - there was a slight flickering that I could see faintly.

    Problem solved now though - but would have been good to know what the exact cause was. Definitely hardware based though..
  9. emcham macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2009
    i just received my 15" anti-glare and might be experiencing this problem... did the images look slightly mesh-like when moving?
  10. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    Yes! Enlarge your desktop hard drive icon really big, and if it looks something along these lines you are experiencing the issue:

    Top is stationary/what it should look like when it is moved. Bottom is when it is moved.

  11. emcham macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2009
    Yep. That is it. Great. So I ordered this online, which probably means a replacement could have the same issue... Hmm
  12. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    My display for my replacement is 9CB2.

    Hopefully Apple may be aware of this issue.. call AppleCare, and ask for a replacement.
  13. sab150 macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2009
    this is to do with apples way of producing "millions of colours" its called dithering...
  14. emcham macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2009
    I called AppleCare, and we ran a series of tests. I ended up talking to a higher up guy who said it is a screen problem among a small number of them that is being looked into right now. He said it isn't that common and it was really doubtful I'd get another like it. They were pleasant and helpful and offered me a return.

    How do you find the make of the panel?
  15. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    It may be related to dithering but it obviously affects a smallish number of the displays. My replacement has a different screen and does not have this issue, thankfully.

    That's good that they are aware of the problem and you are being offered a return/exchange.

    To find the display model, go to System Preferences --> Displays --> Color --> Open Profile (Color LCD) and scroll to the bottom, "17 mmod" and under model number.
  16. emcham macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2009
    thank you kilamite. interesting, it is a 9CB1... one model up from your good one.
  17. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    I had 9CB1 the first time too.
  18. Betelgeuse macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2008
    Just to add another data point:

    My 9CB2 (15" AG MBP) does not appear to have this problem. So, perhaps, Apple fixed this problem with this screen.
  19. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    I just got the 15" antiglare model with the 9CB2 display and have no such issues as well!

    I have to say this display is freaking gorgeous!!

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