Keyboard backlight not working

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by robotmonkey, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. robotmonkey macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    #1
    My keyboard backlight isn't working... whenever I try to turn it up it gives a circle with a line through it. I have read that there is an ambient light sensor that turns off the keyboard backlight when it is too bright, however that has NEVER happened before and I have used it in direct sunlight and the backlight still obviously works. It's not even bright right now but it won't work. This is very frustrating, there should be no sensor that turns it off it should be the brightness I tell it to be. Anyone know what's up or how to disable the freaking sensor?
     
  2. Stvwndr219 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    #2
    Try covering the camera and see if that dims the screen/turns on the backlight. It should only turn on in low light situations.

    If you want to have it on all the time, there is a program called LabTick that will do this for you.
     
  3. robotmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    #3
    Yeah, it turns on if I do that but it never used to do that before. It was just always on (the way it should be), and all of a sudden while I was in the middle of writing a paper (I'm still writing it haha) it decided to turn off and I am actually finding it much harder to type. I find it odd that Apple would include such an annoying and useless feature that wouldn't start working until about 5 months into ownership....
     
  4. Stvwndr219 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
  5. robotmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    #5
    Sí, My house has a lot of windows and even in direct sunlight it used to work. It's a very subtle visual effect that made me love my mac even more. I've actually only used it once outdoors, and even though it is hard to tell it was still on. The sun is actually starting to set now and its still not on...
     
  6. Stvwndr219 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    #6
    That's not the typical behavior for the backlight of the keyboard. It should only illuminate in low-light situations or not at all. Just download LabTick and run it. It doesn't eat up much memory at all...
     
  7. PurdueGuy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #7
    If my backlight decided to turn on in the right circumstances, it was annoying.

    In the right conditions, the silver color of the letters nearly matches the keys, and makes all the keys look blank! I can tough-type, so not a big deal, but looking for volume, mute, etc. was always fun.
     
  8. AlphaDogg, Dec 9, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2010

    AlphaDogg macrumors 68040

    AlphaDogg

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    #8
    It should never turn on in direct sunlight. Do you by chance have the iTunes keyboard backlight visualizer? I have had that cause some issues for me. If it was turning on in direct sunlight, then there was something wrong with your computer. Now that it does not turn on in direct sunlight, you should be glad that it "fixed" itself.

    Edit: also, sometimes if you tilt the screen down slightly, it will allow the keyboard backlight to turn on (the shadow that will be cast by the screen confuses the ambient light sensor, allowing it to "think" that you are in a low-light area, and thus turning on the keyboard backlight).
     
  9. Bisz macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Location:
    ON, Canada
    #9
    I have just had this problem appear 20 minutes ago. I used to be able to control the keyboard backlight regardless of the ambient light conditions, now, after a reboot to install some software, the backlight only comes one if I cover the camera/light detector. Quite annoying.
     

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