MBP 13" resolution... painful on eyes...

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by onthecouchagain, May 7, 2011.

  1. onthecouchagain macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #1
    Is any other MBP 13" 2011 owner really displeased with the screen resolution? I don't know if it's my eyes or not, but anytime I use my laptop, my eyes strain and things just look slightly blurrier than when I'm on a desktop.

    It's becoming a real problem whenever I use my Pro... Am I the only one?
     
  2. AppleScruff1 macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #2
    I only find the higher resolution screens to be hard on my eyes, but I'm old.
     
  3. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #3
    I purchased this laptop March 16... it's been 1.5 months. I know Apple's policy for returns is long over, but I'm beginning to really feel this screen is unacceptable and unusable. Are there any suggestions for solutions to this? Should I even bother pleading my case to Apple for a return?

    Now I'm looking at that MBA 13" with the higher resolution...
     
  4. AppleScruff1 macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

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    Feb 10, 2011
    #4
    Do you think that there is a problem with the screen on your MBP or do you think it is the screen in general, ie, do you think yours might be defective?
     
  5. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #5
    I don't see any indication of defects. I think the screen is working fine, to the best of my knowledge. It's especially blurry when I switch from my desktop to my Pro (say, I want to still be on my computer on the couch or outside of my room); this is when it's the most difficult to use. My eyes strain and it never fully adjusts to the low resolution of the laptop.

    And in general use, my eyes do strain using my Pro almost every time. I recently renewed my prescription lens after an updated eye test, so I know my glasses aren't the culprit.

    There is so much I enjoy about my Pro... but the one caveat is the low resolution. It renders it virtually unusable, at least not without a lot of discomfort.

    I am slightly at a lost as to what to do about this...
     
  6. LeoThe3rd macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2009
    #6
    ^ Usually it's the high-resolution that causes eye strain, not the other way around.

    Maybe it's the actual screen size that has become too small for you?
     
  7. adnoh, May 7, 2011
    Last edited: May 8, 2011

    adnoh macrumors 6502a

    adnoh

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    #7
    maybe its the screen itself (since laptop screens are different to the desktop screens). Maybe its the way the back lighting works?

    lower resolutions make things easier to read so if you have no problems reading things at higher resolution then the culprit must be the screen itself.
     
  8. superego macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2009
    #8
    I agree, it's not the low resolution. It may make things look coarse, but it's still reasonably legible. The glass in front of the display certainly strains eyes. You can subconsciously focus back and forth on the screen itself, and then on the glass and its reflections. Other possibility is that your eyes are sensitive to the led backlighting. Perhaps the screen flickers and causes eye strain even though you can't notice it.
     
  9. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #9
    Interesting replies guys. I do know that higher resolution = smaller fonts and smaller images overall (which equals more screen space), but I wasn't aware that that's what commonly causes my eye strain.

    Perhaps it is the glass and/or LED. Then I guess there is nothing I can really do about it? I guess this screen is small too, but I want the portability of a small/light laptop. I've used a friend's Pro 15" and felt virtually no eye strain.

    Might it be a good idea to purchase an Air to trial it and make a decision one way or another in 14 days? However, if I keep the Air, I'd have to sell the Pro...

    Are there any Pro to Air users (or vice versa) that can speak about eye strain and just overall screen quality? Is the higher resolution and glassless screen easier or harder to read?

    Appreciate all the responses so far.
     
  10. entatlrg macrumors 68040

    entatlrg

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    Mar 2, 2009
    Location:
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    #10
    Lower resolution can definitely strain your eyes ... since each font has less pixels it tends to look more blurry and less sharp.

    Hi resolution screens are very sharp and crisp, making even smaller fonts legible, plus you can always zoom in on any pages you find too small.
     
  11. Modernape macrumors regular

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    Jun 21, 2010
    #11
    Wrong - High res and Low res screens use the same number of pixels for a particular font. the pixels are just smaller on a high res.
     
  12. Ccrew macrumors 68020

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    Feb 28, 2011
  13. entatlrg macrumors 68040

    entatlrg

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    Location:
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    #13
    I should of wrote "appears to have...." regardless the end result is the same ... low res can appear more blurry, less sharp, or 'pixelated' than hi res screens.
     
  14. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #14
    These people are saying that if you're used to a low-resolution screen, a high-resolution screen will cause strain on your eyes.
    However, this is where they're wrong. This can also go the other way. If you're used to a high-resolution screen, like your desktops and your friend's MBP, then a low-res screen like the 13" will cause strain because it has to adjust.
     
  15. M Powered macrumors regular

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    Jul 30, 2008
    #15
    If this is true I guess 15" users should have the same problem being the pixel pitch are virtually the same. 15" has higher resolution for the extra screen real estate, but text and lines should be the same?
     
  16. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #16
    No, text and lines are smaller because they use the same amount of pixels as low-resolution screens, but those pixels are squeezed into a smaller area. So although they use the same amount of pixels, the size of the pixels makes the fonts smaller.

    As for the 15" users having eye strain, the eye also has to adjust to the amount of screen real estate. I went from a pathetic 19" desktop to a 12" laptop, and it made me crazy because it was so small. Now after a year, that same 19" desktop loos gigantic. Now, I'm in the perfect middle ground, a high-res 15" with a resolution higher than both the 19" and the 12" :p
     
  17. M Powered macrumors regular

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    Jul 30, 2008
    #17
    So I think its more a matter of screen size then? Don't recall DPI on 13" and 15" off the top of my head, but I recall the 13" has a little more DPI.

    I have the 13" and 15" and they both look the same. The 15" allows more on screen obviously, but text and lines look identical. I have the low res 15"

    I spend hours going from my 13" screen to my 24" external display with zero issues. My biggest problem was the brightness of my MBP, but since I calibrated the screen, its been perfect.
     
  18. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #18
    I'd like to be able to keep a small form factor laptop, but not too small (I don't think the 11" will work for me). I think 13" is the perfect fit for me... so that comes down to either the Air or the Pro.

    Unfortunately, I went with the Pro because I wasn't willing to pay "more for less" (quite literally) for the Air. However, I also didn't think the lower resolution -- one of the few things the Air > Pro spec wise -- would bother me so much.

    Part of me is still unwilling to go the Air route, as now I'd have to sell my Pro, and pay for the difference in prices when picking up an Air. But if I find the Pro screen virtually unusable without a lot of discomfort, what choice do I have?

    Conundrum.
     
  19. M Powered macrumors regular

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    Jul 30, 2008
    #19
    Upgrade to the 15" high-res. Or get the 17".
     
  20. uplusd macrumors 6502

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    Apr 8, 2008
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #20
    I was actually getting headaches from the glossy screen on my 13" MBP. Solution?

    13" MatteBook Pro :D

    [​IMG]
     
  21. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #21
  22. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #22
    The 13" has 3 more DPI when the 15" is low-res. So in your case, yes, it's the screen size.
    The 15" high-res has 128ppi, while the 13" has strictly 113ppi.

    Also, the MBP has a bright, bright screen. Brighter the better. It's usually the desktop monitor that has brightness issues, because often they are matte and have a milky white tint no matter how you calibrate it.

    @OP, your problem is the PPI (or pixels per inch). You are used to high-ppi screens used with desktops, ranging from 120 to 150+, and you suddenly drop down into the 110 range and you get instant headaches. You should have gotten the 13" Air if you wanted a high-res screen; it has the same ppi as the 15" MBP with a high-res screen.
     
  23. onthecouchagain thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #23
    Update: Thanks to amazing Apple Customer service, I'm going to get a full refund for my Pro despite being well beyond the 14 day return period. I'll do some research on the Air 13" and Pro 15" down the line and hopefully make a better decision then.

    Thanks for all the feedback and input, people.
     

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