Late 2008 MBP Black level test

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by biggreenapple, Nov 16, 2008.

  1. biggreenapple macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #1
    I have (only for now) 2 late 2008 macbook pro. One has a really nice screen, great contrast, rich colors. The other is the opposite, poor contrast, any image looks flat and pale. I suspect one of the reason is that there is a significant difference in black level between these two MBPs. So I compared the 'black' of the 2 screen in a darkroom (my bathroom ;)) and below are my test photos:

    (About how photos were taken: Difference of the 2 screen is already apparent to me with normal viewing angle, but to emphasis the difference in the camera, I used a high viewing angle.)

    photo 1 (see attachment) is the screen with pure black background. One can easily see that the right one is much more black than the left one.

    photo 2 is to compare the 2 screen with dark picture on it. Yes, the night sky looks more beautiful if the black level is good.

    photo 3 is to compare a normal (non-dark) picture. I compared a number of pictures generally the right one has better color levels. The one I am showing here is a good example for green: You get a better green with better black level.

    I am not a photographer, but taking photo is my hobby. And like everyone I want photos and movies look great on my MBP. Just a little worried that the quality of the screen can vary so much.

    Do you know any software can measure the contrast and black level of the screen? would be interesting to try on both machines.
     

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  2. MVApple macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 18, 2008
    #2
    Can you check for us to see which one of these is the 9c84 or the 9c85 please?
     
  3. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #3
    The nice (right) one is 9c85. the poor (left) is 9c84. I guess even LCDs from same vendor can vary. I have seen 2 late 2008 MBPs both with Hitachi (made in Thailand) 250GB 5400rpm harddisk, one harddisk is quite and the other is very loud...:(
     
  4. lscangus macrumors 6502

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    Jul 29, 2003
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    Newcastle, UK
    #4
    can you do a comparison between them in straight eye level?

    Angus
     
  5. MVApple macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 18, 2008
    #5
    Actually they aren't the same vendor. The 84 is an LG and the 85 is a Chei Mei.

    I have the 84 and I'm happy with it. Do one thing though, make sure both of these are set to the same gama, either 1.8 or 2.2. Changing the gama changes the contrast and lack levels.

    Ok I just compared my 84 to your pics and in my pics the 84 looks much much better than the 84 in your pics. Does the camera magnify the issue? Or do those pics represent pretty closely what you see in real life?
     
  6. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #6
    would like to, but I just put the left one in the box and sealed... it will go back to Apple soon. (beside the black level thing it also has a flickering screen)

    As I said, in the darkroom with straight eye level, the difference is apparent to look at but not so much in my camera's LCD.
     
  7. lscangus macrumors 6502

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    Jul 29, 2003
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    Newcastle, UK
    #7
    Just an info. The 9C84 is the one from LG, and the 9C85 is the one from Chi Mei

    Angus
     
  8. Vodka macrumors regular

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    Nov 9, 2008
    #8
    So there are different screens on new mbp?
    i thought he testing "old" mbp and new
     
  9. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #9
    Yes!! there are!
     
  10. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020

    Tex-Twil

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    Europe
    #10
    wat is this ?
     
  11. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #11
    Yes, I know they are from different vendors. And, I checked my friend's new MBP with 84, it is much better!

    (in my test both machine are calibrated by the original color profile with same gamma and white point.)

    I think what you see on the photos represents the real life. the difference is huge.
     
  12. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    Feb 19, 2005
    #12
    Just like the MBs, the LG screens are in fact pieces of ****. It is truly unfortunate that the two better screens on both the MB and the MBPs are in fact made by some random company that is probably not nearly as well known as LG.

    This will also mean that the LG LCD HDTV I was going to purchase won't be something I want in my house.

    I'm guessing if Apple can eat crow for a bit they'll stop using the LGs and hopefully manage to return them to the manufacturer.
     
  13. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #13
    they are the model code of the LCD, you can find in your system preference - displays - color - color LCD - open profile then goto line no. 13
     
  14. svndmvn Guest

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    Nov 6, 2007
    Location:
    Italy
    #14
    sorry if this has been asked before, it might be stupid but could you be satisfied with different calibration profiles? or does that not change the blacks a bit? I believe it has on my LCD
     
  15. MVApple macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 18, 2008
    #15
    I suppose it's too late to try calibrating the 84? Maybe LG's have a large variance in manufacturing that could be helped by calibration? I do find it odd that two 84's could look so different.
     
  16. biggreenapple thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #16
    This LG panel is definitely defective... flickering, poor color. I changed its gamma to maximum, only helped a bit, still less black than the other one. sorry, don't have time to photograph again..
     
  17. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

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    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    #17
    Can't you take the washed out one back, or have the screen replaced under warranty?
     
  18. farlane macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #18
    Finally, the nay-sayers a proven wrong. If this isn't a difference worth sending it back, I don't know what is.

    Can someone PLEASE do the same for a (non-Pro) MacBook? I think all of the vivid text descriptions could not describe this problem anywhere near as accurately.
     
  19. Red-red macrumors 6502

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #19
    Makes me happy I have a yellow free 85. But What I'm gathering is the panels from both vendors vary.
     
  20. farlane macrumors newbie

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    Nov 16, 2008
    #20
    I own a MacBook and I heard of these differences before. I thought they are practically unnoticeable, but these pictures made me think.

    I know it's worse than a MBP display, but if the "hardly noticeable" difference between MB displays is similar to this, then it's probably PRETTY noticeable to me.

    I think most of the text descriptions are too subjective for comparisons.

    I'd love to see one "bad" MB compared to a "good" MB like in the OP's photos. With identical viewing angles and no background lights.

    I seriously consider sending back my MB now, since obviously, what I have is not the kind of quality I expect for a 1200 Euro device (there are cheaper laptops with MUCH better displays... it's really sad).

    God, Apple, why are you doing this to me? I also had one of the broken mainboard iBook G3s in 2003. And my iPod stopped working 1 week after the warranty ran out. Why am I such a masochist? Why does all the Apple stuff that DOES work have to be so good?
     
  21. Red-red macrumors 6502

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #21
    What I would like to see is somebody compare these cheaper laptops next to the new MBP's.
     
  22. teazen macrumors newbie

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    Jan 15, 2008
    #22
    9C84 had many ditherial noise at the dark gray level. You all can look it in this web. The background black color ramp should be smooth.

    http://www.adobe.com/
     

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  23. freejack macrumors regular

    freejack

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    Nov 15, 2007
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    #23
    Just received the replacement for my 'overheating' (another story) bto mbp. The original unit has a 9c85 and this new one has a 9c84. I placed them side-by-side and saw the exact same thing as in the OP's photo. I also briefly owned another mbp with a 9c84 which I also had the opportunity to compare against the 9c85 and the difference in quality was there as well. This leads me to believe that most 9c84 panels will be washed out and lack deep blacks. Now I'm stuck as to what to do since the machine with the 9c85 has problems with heat management but I don't want to have to live with the washed out colors of the 9c84.
     
  24. jachiho macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    #24
    Im using a 9c84 now and I am noticing the lack of blacks too. I compared it with the new MB Air and the different is quite big in the blacks, but the MB Pro does seem to have better colors. I never owned a 9c85, but now that it is quite apparent that 9c84 is somewhat defective, Im thinking of return it. I paid the extra money to buy the Pro instead of the Macbook solely because of the screen. Extremely disappointed!
     
  25. CaffeMacchiato macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    #25
    The difference in the level of darkness for 9c84 (bad) and 9c85 (good) is just a one-off incident or a well known fact?
     

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