Concern for Glossy iMac Display: Purchase Advice for Design Firm.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by InLikeALion, Jan 28, 2008.

  1. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2007
    Greener places than I used to live
    I work for a small design firm with about 4 designers and a few interns. We are needing to purchase a new machine and price/featurewise I think an imac might fit our needs. We would probably get the current 24" because I've heard they use the IPS panels and the 20" use cheeper PVA or TN, iirc.

    We run a server with our client files served over a network - so upgradeability of hdd isn't that big of a deal. We also don't need the extra ports/expansion of a MP (we couldn't afford it, either, for what it's needed for).

    The thing I'm worried about is the display. Specifically the glossy only display. It will be used in a room with a window about 3' to the right, so sunlight will be a factor. We've never had a desk in this space, so I'm not sure it will get direct sunlight.

    I wanted to know what any designer's experience with the new imacs and hear opinions on how distracting / potentially hard to calibrate the glossy screens are.

    I've thought that if it was bad, yet in every other way the imac seems to fit our bill, I could remove the glass with suction cups and leave it bare.

    I have actually hoped an accessories company would realize that a good product would be a magnetic black bezel replacements that people could replace the glass panel with so that it would still have the intended and "finished" look. We could have a choice between glossy and matte that way.

    Ideas anyone?
  2. InLikeALion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2007
    Greener places than I used to live
    Mods, I've also asked this question in the Design forum, but since it gets less traffic I thought I should also post here. Sorry if that's a problem. You can PM me if I should have done it differently. thanks!
  3. -Noodles macrumors regular


    Oct 18, 2007
    my girlfriend just got the 24" iMac in October after they were just released. Her overhead florescent light doesn't cause problems with reflections unless there's too much black on the screen. So playing movies or certain games requires the lights go out.
  4. roland.g macrumors 603


    Apr 11, 2005
    One mile up and soaring
    I personally think people are making too big a deal of the glossy v. matte sitch. I have a new 24" iMac and I have never noticed it. Not once. However, the colors are quite rich and vibrant. And everyone, and I mean every single person who has seen it says, WOW that is a beautiful screen.

    Stock response: Actually it's the whole computer.
  5. itou macrumors regular

    Jan 16, 2008
    we never use glossy displays in our design office. all the creative work is done on matte displays. the reason is simple. not only do colours get better representation on a matte display, it is less tiring to the eyes. when you stare at a monitor for 10 hours a day like we do, you can't stand glare. we were in the same position as you, and our firm has since purchased two 24" imacs with a custom anti-gloss coating that we've applied to the imacs. it works like a charm. it sounds redundant and a step backwards (considering the previous imacs were not glossy and the current ones are), but it was worth it.

    there are people who love the gloss because it fools the eye into thinking it's vibrant. but sometimes, that is the exact opposite of what you want. and since all our displays are matte, we simply cannot tolerate one or two displays that are. the workflow stops and everyone gets confused.

    judging from how many people are complaining about the gloss on the imacs. i'm guessing they don't have these custom-made film outside of japan. if you're eager to know, i can have the name for you when i get to the office tomorrow.
  6. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    Please don't cross post. If we see or hear of thread duplicates, one of them gets deleted or closed.

    I'm a professional print, display, and occasional web graphics designer; been doing it for over 20 years. I would never use the 24" iMacs for design work, they're far too glossy with all that that implies. They're hideous in that respect and yes, I've seen one. Spent about 20mins with one in the Apple Store here in London.

    Someone's going to say that CRTs were also glossy, but any half-decent CRT for design work also has a substantial set of anti-gloss coatings and layers, just like the LaCies and Mitsubishis that we're still using.

    So, no. Not recommended.
  7. elberggreno macrumors member

    Jan 8, 2008
    Sorry, but I too have to chime in on the others.. I work as a graphical designer and do ALOT of prepress work for a printer, I also calibrate screens and profile their proof printers using professional equipment... A glossy screen will give you problems with skintones, dark greys etc. in print..

    Your idea of tearing that glass of seems awsome though, would love to see that!
  8. ouphe macrumors regular

    Jun 12, 2005
    Los Angeles, CA
    The system as a whole would work for you, no doubt, but yeah, the screen isn't really optimized for pro graphic work. The colors on the screen are stunning and vibrant, but the calibration is way off.
  9. Jebaloo macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2006
    I'm not sure what the current Mac mini line up is like now, but perhaps that would be better for you, with an external Apple Cinema Display.
  10. ClassicBean macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2004
    Here's another option...

    Get the iMac. Buy a second matte display. Enable screen spanning and use the second display as the computer's main screen.

    You can now use the iMac's screen to hold Adobe tools, email, etc. Your designers will benefit from more screen real estate and a non-glossy screen should they desire it.
  11. macboy62 macrumors regular


    Sep 13, 2006
    I'm not suggesting anyone should do this, but I saw a 'stick on' anti-glare screen film for the 24" iMac in the Tokyo Ginza Apple store on Sunday.

    I have seen lots the these around computer stores in Japan for all types of screens from mobile phones to computers both glossy and anti-glare.
  12. AlBDamned macrumors 68030


    Mar 14, 2005
    That's a solution. Get the more powerful 20" model iMac and use the difference between that and the 24" model to buy a decent 24" matte monitor from somewhere else.
  13. MarkMS macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    I'm not a designer, but what about the older White iMacs? They were matte, but I have no idea how good they are in terms of doing professional work. I think Apple has some 20" white iMacs in the refurb section of the online store.

    Other than that, the only thing I can think of is what ClassicBean said. Just buy an iMac along with an external display.

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