Anyone left the glossy screen off?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by DamoRed, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. DamoRed macrumors member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    #1
    I noticed while reading 'Tom Sawyer's' post, on replacing the hard drive.... http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=350120 .... he mentions that the LCD screen itself is glossy.

    I'm wondering if anyone has taken their front screen off and left it off for any period of time. If so, has the glossy LCD on its own been workable, as opposed to being behind the front glossy screen as well. Is the front glossy screen accentuating and multiplying the effect of the glossy LCD, making it ULTRA GLOSSY! Would it be more acceptable for graphics work, if and when an aftermarket replacement frame is available, to replace the front glass? By replacement frame, I mean simply a surrounding frame, nothing with matte glass or any other kind of glass.

    I realise that removing and leaving off the glass may be a cause for concern, with the possibility of dust being introduced.

    Another point is, that I'm currently working with an eMac, which has a glass screen in front of a traditional tube screen. And while the finish is somewhat glossy, it's not excessive, but bearable. As a photographer, working with this is fine. However, having seen a new iMac a few days ago, I found it impossible to adjust to it at all.


    Thank you

    Damo
     
  2. eric.blair macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    #2
    I have been wondering the same thing.

    I don't believe dust would be an issue since the white iMac I have (Matte) is basically just the Alu without the glass... the LCD is just open, with the bezel around it.

    I'm waiting for a 3rd party to make a black magnetic border piece to put in place of the existing glass, thus no glossy display... well if the LCD itself is glossy, at least the glass won't be there to make it worse.
     
  3. AlexisV macrumors 68000

    AlexisV

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    #3
    The gloss shouldn't have any effect on graphics work, unless you're opposite a sunny window. And even a sunny window will shine on a matt display. You don't actually notice the glossiness at all, except when you walk in the room and go "oooo" :D

    The problem is the poor viewing angle on the 20" LG Philips screen unfortunately, not so much the gloss :(
     
  4. DamoRed thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    #4
    Please don't take this the wrong way, AlexisV, but how anyone can suppose to tell me how something affects me, or what I notice, or do not notice, I don't know!

    I sat in front of a 24" iMac, which is the one with the LG Phillips IPS screen, not the 20", and I simply could not work with it. This was in a room where there were no light areas behind me. But when working with it at home, I would have a window behind me. In terms of graphics work, if a screen is extremely glossy, proper assessment of colours is practically impossible. It may look great to most people, but the reality is something else.

    The problem with viewing angles on the 20" is a different issue, which wouldn't concern me, as that is a TN screen, as far as I know.

    Damo
     
  5. AlexisV macrumors 68000

    AlexisV

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    #5
    LOL, no problem ;)

    It's interesting that you regard the viewing angle of the TN screen as not the main issue. I use the white iMac at work, and it's great. I wouldn't like to use the glossy alumnium iMac I have at home for work though, purely because of the colour shif problems.
     
  6. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #6
    If you are doing any graphics work where you need color accuracy the glossy screen is very bad since it oversaturates all of the colors.
     
  7. psonice macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 22, 2005
    #7
    I have a glossy 24" imac, with a 19" matte TN panel as a second screen. Once both are calibrated, the imac screen is MUCH better for colour accuracy as there's no colour shift. The only time when this isn't true is for very dark colours - basically, the darker the screen is, the more you see reflections. If you were working on a dark image in a bright room, it would be very difficult. For normal images, in a normal room, it's not much of an issue.

    The whole 'glare' issue is a red herring I think. There's far more glare on a matte screen than a glossy one when strong light falls on the screen. If you're working with a window behind you and the light shines straight at the screens, the matte panel is almost unusable while the glossy is still fairly OK.

    Reflections are the main issue from my experience. And as I said, it's only an issue if the room is very brightly lit or you have a dark image on screen (and with a combination of the two, start shopping for blinds!). With the mac turned off (or a totally black screen), the screen is like a mirror. With it turned on and with a normal desktop (windows open etc.) you can barely see any reflections.
     
  8. ljf5000 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2007
    #8
    http://www.photodon.com/lcdprotect-sheet.htm
    I was thinking about trying this film when I get an imac and remove the glass. That would make the panel matte without much problem. The reason the film can't just be used over the glass is the distance between the panel and film would distort text.

    Also, regarding an aftermarket magnetic border supplier... I am considering taking my glass to a water-jet cutting company or glass store to see if they can help cut a large rectangular hole where the panel is located. That would provide a finished look at least.
    john
     
  9. Leon Kowalski macrumors 6502a

    Leon Kowalski

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    #9
    Converting the glass panel to a large glass "picture frame" (with narrow sides!) could be tricky. It would probably be easier/cheaper/safer to start with a sheet of black plastic (Tuffax, Lexan, or somesuch). Cut it to shape and glue a few thin steel strips on the back for magnetic hold-down. (I'm guessing that the iMac's magnets are mounted in the aluminum bezel, not glued to the glass. Anyone know for sure?)

    A commercial sign shop could probably supply the materials and labor; or you could do it yourself -- if you're handy with tools and have a router...

    ...uh, Porter-Cable, not NetGear,

    LK
     
  10. eric.blair macrumors newbie

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    Sep 26, 2007
    #10
    I just can't believe a 3rd party hasn't developed anything like this yet. Usually after the release of any new Apple product, 3rd party manufacturers are all over accessories and add-ons.
     
  11. kkat69 macrumors 68020

    kkat69

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    #11
    According to a podcast and from other online sources (google.com) the LCD for the new alums is NOT matte. Hence why they call it "GLossy"

    The glass adds another "glossy" which isn't glossy but reflective since that was glass does. A plastic cover wouldn't be as reflective (plexiglass sheet instead of a glass sheet) but would end up making what you see over time discolored and eventually distorted quicker than glass would.

    If you took it off you'll find out that the LCD itself is also glossy although not as reflective as glass itself.

    The LCD is coated with a film for the gloss to help bring the colors out and make them more brighter and richer than a matte standard LCD.

    The glass is just being it's normal physical self and reflecting objects which is what most people are calling and associating the glossy issues with.

    Just wanted people to understand that the glass is causing the reflections. The LCD will still be glossy.
     
  12. Virgil-TB2 macrumors 65816

    Virgil-TB2

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    #12
    I don't think you have very good eyes (unless you are using the 24" iMac). :)

    The current alum iMac is a great consumer desktop, but for anyone who needs colour accuracy it's simply a non-starter. It's not just the gloss and the over-saturation, it's also the strong gradient from the top to bottom of the screen and the fact that the colours all change, and quite significantly, depending on one's viewing angle.

    As an artist who has worked with many monitors over the years and uses the new alum iMac daily, I can say for certain that it is not a screen that anyone seriously interested in colour accuracy could use. Anyone who says different just doesn't have the equipment (eyes) to be able to tell, (and therefore should probably not be trusted to advise.) If you can't see the gradient, or don't notice the over-saturation, ... well great!, but hundreds and hundreds of other users can, and do notice it.

    Side-by-side comparisons of the new iMac to an ACD also prove this beyond any doubt whatsoever. The 20" iMac has a "good" screen, but not a "great" one, and not one that can be trusted for colour accuracy in a professional environment.

    I haven't seen the 24" one yet, but I doubt whether this could seriously be used by a professional either as the gradient effect is likely to do with the physical set up of the screen and the glass which would be the same in the 24" even though the part (the screen itself) is supposed to be a better one.
     
  13. kkat69 macrumors 68020

    kkat69

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    #13
    The 24" Alum iMac does in fact have a better LCD than the 20" but that doesn't mean it doesn't have it's share of gradient issues. Some (and this goes the same with ALL the iMacs 20" or 24") of the 24"s also have the gradient but it goes mostly from left to right. More noticable on the right side of the screen.

    The LCD is still a better quality display on the 24"
     
  14. DamoRed thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    #14
    Interesting idea, LJF, but I wouldn't be doing it with the iMac glass. :eek: I'm sure there are other suitable materials, as Leon suggested. Let us know if you do anything with this idea, I for one, would be interested to hear the outcome. Thanks for the link for the lcd protective film too.

    Alexis, I mentioned the viewing angle problems of the 20" not being an issue for me, as I'm only interested in the 24" model. As KKat says, there is a possible gradient issue with some 24" screens as well, but that's another day's work.

    I wonder what's holding up the 3rd party market frames, as they are surely onto a winner as and when they do appear.

    Thanks for all of your responses

    Damo
     
  15. theman macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2007
    #15
    if you are doing professional graphics work, you should have opted for a mac pro and a high quality LCD. iMac really isn't designed for pro work. but i guess if you cant afford a mac pro, and you really NEED a mac, modifying your machine would work. i don't see why you shouldn't remove the front cover. although i don't really know what's under there because i'm no expert on lcds.
     
  16. eric.blair macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    #16
    Yeah, I figured this out from others who had removed the glass. I actually don't mind the glossy display as much as I thought I would, and it doesn't present too much of an issue with my current lighting conditions, but the reflections with dark backgrounds on the display is the biggest issue... which would be solved from the glass removal. The Glossy LCD doesn't seem like it would be as noticeable.
     
  17. AlexisV macrumors 68000

    AlexisV

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    Manchester, UK
    #17
    Some of these posts have left me a little confused.

    Number One:

    I think you've misunderstood my post. I AM saying the new 20" iMac (I haven't seen the 24) is not suitable but design work because of the colour shift gradient problem. I use the white 20" at work (fine) and the new 20" at home (annoying grad). I don't find the glossy screen is the issue.

    By the way, my eyes are fine thanks.



    Number Two

    The old iMac is perfectly suited for pro work. There was a good book published in 2006 and featured in Creative Review called 'A British Graphic Design and Print Landscape 2006'. It shows 25 design studios and there's a good mix of iMacs and Power Macs.

    Here's a little link: http://www.brownsdesign.com/work/?cat=39&id=18

    Colour accuracy should never be taken purely from what you see on screen. Pantone swatches, calibrated laser proofs and what you see on screen should all be used in combination as the job requires.
    I agree that the new iMac (20" at least) would be a pain in the neck to use for design though. Maybe it is a cynical attempt to push sales of the Mac Pro and Cinema Displays?

    Number Three

    That's some interesting info. Thanks :)
     
  18. Leon Kowalski macrumors 6502a

    Leon Kowalski

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    Gondwanaland Reunification Front HQ
    #18
    BZZZZZT! Sorry, Bubba ...but thanks for playin'.

    The 24" iMac has a top-quality LCD panel, one of the finest available -- from the same LCD product-line used in the Cinema Displays. Although Apple somehow managed to FUBAR the backlight, we still get to pay (in full) for the premium-quality parts. ...while AAPL shareholders rejoyce!


    http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/articles/panel_parts.htm

    23" ACD (M9178LL): LG.Philips LM230WU3, S-IPS, 12ms, 800:1, 400, 178/178

    24" iMac (MA878LL): LG.Philips LM240WU2, S-IPS, 12ms, 800:1, 400, 178/178

    NEC LCD2490WUXi: LG.Philips LM240WU2, S-IPS, 12ms, 800:1, 400, 178/178

    http://www.necdisplay.com/cms/documents/ColorBrochures/90Series_wide_Brochure_0107.pdf


    ...non-professional, iMac-quality LCD -- now only $1149.99 at newegg.com,

    LK
     
  19. DamoRed thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    #19
    Well I haven't actually opted for anything yet. I always do my homework and research before I buy anything! :)

    I've read and heard of hundreds and even thousands of pro graphics workers in every part of the world using iMacs in all their revisions. Whole studios have been kitted out with iMacs in some cases. Not this latest one, though, I'm sure, which may be the one you're specifically referring to. But as Leon points out, the screen itself is of the highest possible quality available. It's the issues such as the backlighting and the front reflective glass that are screwing things up.

    As you have mentioned, the affordability of a Mac Pro is a problem. It's not just the Mac Pro, but then there's the screen to be bought as well. So it all adds up. The iMac would be an ideal option as far as cost and performance are concerned, but other issues get in the way.

    Damo
     
  20. Leon Kowalski macrumors 6502a

    Leon Kowalski

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    #20
    Exactly! Here's how a Mac Pro adds up in the USofA (where it's DIRT CHEAP compared to most other places).

    Mac Pro 2.66 GHz, 1 GB, 250 GB ............... $2499

    BlueTooth + WiFi ...................................... $79

    camera, microphone, speakers ................... $220 (estimate)

    23" ACD (or a higher-rated Dell 2407WFP) .... $899 (or $699)

    Total .................................................... $3500 - $3700

    So, the entry-level Pro system costs twice as much as a 24" iMAc -- with a smaller disk, only 1 GB of horribly expensive ECC RAM, and an entirely insignificant 7% performance advantage (see MacWorld benchmarks).

    IMO, Apple screwed the pooch with the ALU iMac release. They now offer absolutely nothing with a reasonable-quality display and mid-range CPU/HDD performance -- short of a $3500 Mac Pro system...

    ...and at $3500, it's still only mid-range CPU/HDD performance!

    LK
     
  21. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

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    United States
    #21
    You have to pick and choose with the right balance of cost and quality.

    I have a Mac Pro 2.66 with 3 GB of RAM, SuperDrive, BlueTooth, AirPort / WiFi, a stock 250 GB hard drive, and aftermarket 500 GB Western Digital hard drive, and two 19-inch Widescreen LCD monitors.

    I have less than $3000 into the whole system, and it was all purchased new.

    The thing is, you have to shop around, and pick your components based on personal observation and quality rather than brand reputation and the assumption that nothing else will equal that product in quality.

    I've got two Hanns.G 19-inch wide-screen LCD monitors. They cost me about $160 each at my local retailer (Fred Meyer / Kroger grocery store). Each monitor includes both Digital and Analog video inputs, and also have stereo speakers built-in. They came with the Digital and Analog video cables as well as the audio input cable and power cable. I'm using the Digital video inputs (they plugged right into my Mac Pro's two video out's).

    Their quality is absolutely amazing. There are absolutely no dead or stuck pixels. And, the first time you look at them, they are so bright that you feel like you're staring into the sun (although your eyes adjust after a few hours). The color is even and consistent across the screen, and the surface is remarkably durable (they held-up to my daughter writing on them with a sharp mechanical pencil without leaving any permanent markings or damage in the surface - can't say the same for the other panels she wrote on around the house).

    I have used a lot of monitors, and these are absolutely the best I have ever used. Including Apple's monitors. And, in comparison to all the iMac's I've owned, these monitors absolutely shame Apple's iMac panels.

    I ordered the system stock with the exception of adding bluetooth and Airport Extreme / WiFi. And, had $2372 (looking at the invoice now) into the purchase. I just did a screen-grab of my invoice and included that in this post. Naturally, I left out the personal details and such that are more private (card number, address, etc.).

    I ordered an additional 2 GB of RAM from Other World Computing and an additional 500 GB hard drive. And, had $300 into that including shipping.

    Now, I did have another DVD-Writer available. So, I stuck that in. No cost, so might as well use it :) So, I have dual SuperDrives in there now.

    Adding it all up, I have $2992 total invested into this machine.

    That compares very favorably with the price of a similar iMac system.

    To get an iMac of similar specs, I'd have to go with the 24-inch model. And, then I'd only have a dual-core instead of a quad-core.

    The iMac would cost about $2500 with a 750 GB hard drive and 2.8 GHz Dual-Core CPU.

    So, you figure that for roughly $500 more, I got more space on my screen (since I have dual 19-inch wide-screens), I got 1 GB more memory, and I got a system which can be easily upgraded and is very easy to blow the dust out of (for me, being able to blow out the inside regularly is important).

    Of course, I also got two more processor cores in the equation.

    So, that is a pretty good deal for the small difference in price.

    Speakers are very cheap. Especially if you are getting ones of comparable quality to the ones in the iMac. Those could be had for $15 or less.

    Microphones are subjective. If you really, really need a microphone, then odds are you'll want something of better quality than you'd get with the iMac. I use a professional Shure microphone (like you'd find on stage at a concert). I also run all my audio equipment through a small mixer before it goes into my computer.

    I don't do much with webcams. But, I do have one for my daughter to play with on the Playstation (one of the games is interactive). And, I spent $13 on it. I've hooked it up to the Mac, and it works fine. So, that's also a pretty cheap item.

    So, I don't see $200 worth of stuff in that category unless you are buying way above the quality of what you'd receive built-into the iMac.

    The thing is, the higher-end configurations of the iMac do come very close to the mid-range / second-tier Mac Pro.

    So, the difference is not as extreme as many make it out to be.

    For myself, I was going to buy an iMac when the aluminum ones were released. But, I stopped and did a price comparison first. When I saw the minimal difference in price between the configurations I was looking at, then it became really easy to consider the Mac Pro since the extra items in the Pro would offset the small difference in price.

    Now, if you are weighing a $1200 iMac against the Mac Pro, then yes there is a huge price difference. But, there is also a huge difference in specs and the target buyer.
     

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  22. Leon Kowalski macrumors 6502a

    Leon Kowalski

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    #22
    Yeah, new! ...but you conveeeeniently forgot to mention your academic or corporate discount. Add the 8% back in, and your "under $3k" claim goes right down the drain.

    No argument there! The new ALU iMac LCDs would be an embarrassment to Wal*Mart.

    I don't need (or want!) 4 cores or 24"; a 20" 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo would be PERFECT -- if it only had video quality half as good as your $160 "Fred Meyer's special." (Not intended in any way as a slam against Fred Meyer stores; they should teach a course in QUALITY to the bozos in Cupertino.)

    Stop comparing (padded!) iMac MSRPs with discounted Mac Pro prices. Even if I wanted 2.8 GHz, the list price of a 2.8 GHz / 320 GB iMac is $2049 -- or $1924 with the academic discount. The iMac's standard 320GB disk is already larger than Mac Pro's, so how does porking it up to 750 GB make it "similar?" Also, AppleCare for the Pro costs $80 more than the iMac -- and the Pro's ECC memory is twice as expensive, for exactly the same speed.

    When word leaks out that all sub-$3500 Macs now have POS displays, I'm sure the news will be extremely well-received by Apple's traditional artsy-fartsy/academic customer base.

    ...now 'splain me how your Turbo Carrera "fits my needs" better than a Civic DX,

    LK

    .
     
  23. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

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    United States
    #23

    Actually, you can save quite a lot of money by just talking to Apple on the telephone. No corporate or educational discount necessary.

    For example, when I purchased my first iMac G5, I checked-out with a savings of about $200 on the system and got even more off when he sold me AppleCare after the system was configured. The thing is, you have to be a smart shopper.

    Don't call them and say here is what I want. In other words, don't call them and tell them about the high-end system you want to have when you are done on the phone. Start at the bottom and let them up-sell you. Be a tough sale.

    Tell them you don't really think you're interested. Let them work to up-sell you. That way they are trying to see how much they'll have to reduce the cost of a given item to get you to take it.

    I've used that strategy with Apple on several of my purchases. And, I never pay the full price.

    For example, on the first iMac G5 I purchased, I got a huge discount on the upgrade to 1 GB of memory because I said I didn't really need more memory.

    Then, they tried to sell me AppleCare, and I refused. I told them I didn't want it.

    After really trying to get me to take it, they offered me AppleCare for $69. So, I took it.

    I saved quite a bit there by just starting with the base system and letting them work me up a bit higher to what I really wanted.

    Same thing when I purchased my old PowerMac G3 266-DT. I called to purchase a much lower refurbished system that was not a G3. The sales person insisted that I would really be much happier with the higher-end G3 system. I told him that I didn't really think I needed it, and that I wanted to go with the cheaper system. After about 5 minutes of him telling me how much better the new system was, I threw him a line and asked him if I would really see that kind of difference. He insisted I would. I still debated, and after a bit of back and forth, I got the higher-end system for the exact same price as the older refurb system (saved about $500).

    You have to be a smart shopper.

    You don't walk into a car dealer and tell them that you want the Hummer or the Cadillac. You go in there looking at the small truck or the small car, and let the salesman work to get you to look at the more expensive car or truck.

    The thing is, you go in with an idea of what you want to leave with. But, you start out looking at something much less and let them negotiate you up to where you actually intended to be.

    They feel great for getting you sold on something larger than you really wanted. You feel great for getting what you wanted at a reduced price.

    Back to the Mac Pro I purchased. I went into the conversation going after low-end. I let him talk me up. When we got to the system I was after, he tried to sell me on the WiFi and BlueTooth. I wasn't interested since I don't use that at all (I don't even like it). So, I let him work to get me to take it.

    Sure, I purchased it for a little bit of money. But, I only agreed to buy the BT and WiFi because it might come in useful some day. I really didn't see any use for it now and it's disabled at this moment. But, with the price he gave me on it, I figured sure why not. Go ahead and stick it in there.

    Don't ask for the Cadillac. Ask for the Yugo and let them convince you that you have to get the Cadillac. You'll save a lot more that way.

    As for the displays, the built-in display was actually a primary consideration that weighed in the Mac Pro's favor. I've had my share of dud screens with several iMac over the last 3 or so years.

    I also would be served quite well with an iMac. But, the small price difference between the higher-end iMac and the lower-end Mac Pro, and the fact that I can use any screen I choose with the Mac Pro and that I can easily blow the dust from the Mac Pro, and it's really a winning situation with the Pro.

    The iMac is rendered a clunky design (or to some useless) if it's internal screen dies and I am forced to use an external. Likewise, it's resale value plummets if the built-in screen dies. But, a Mac Pro is worth the same even if it's external screen dies because they are buying the computer. Just sell it without a monitor. It's value is not determined by it's screen (unless you are trying to sell it as a bundle).

    For me, it just made more sense.

    I'd be well served with a machine of the iMac's power. But, the other factors sent me to the Pro.
     
  24. psonice macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    #24
    Um... i use a 19" wide hanns.g as a second monitor with a 24" alu imac. If you think that shames an apple screen, seriously, you have something wrong with your eyes! Even after several calibrations, it still looks blue compared to the imac screen, you get colour shift and gradients on a flat background because it's a TN panel, and dead pixels are common (I had 2 dead on the first I tried, I sent it back and got 1 dead pixel, luckily cured with some flashing colour video). Also, it's reasonably bright yes - but nowhere near the imac. I have to turn the hanns g to around 90% brightness and the imac down to around 20% to balance them!
     
  25. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #25

    Perhaps you have a dud.

    I've had 3 of them, and none of them have demonstrated what you describe. And, I've looked them over with multiple different solid colors that are both light and dark shades, and can't find any dead or stuck pixels. Every once in a while I think I've found one, then I discover it's just dust and I blow it away.

    I did have one that I came home with that had some odd bright spots (like a cloud) and uneven backlighting. I called the store, and they said just bring it in and they replaced it.

    Perhaps you should have taken yours back to the store for an exchange.

    But, I've had 3 of them, and used around 4 others. None of them had a single stuck or dead pixel that was visible. And, they all had great and consistent color.

    The brightness is still at the marginally comfortable level. Hadn't thought about turning it down. I may go ahead and try that.
     

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