My view of the 27" iMac display issues

Discussion in 'iMac' started by symbology, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. symbology macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    This is all just my opinion, so take it for what it is worth.

    I would say that around 70% of all 27" iMac displays have some level of yellow tint or gray banding issue. Now before you get upset and call BS, let me explain.

    #1) I have owned 4 mid 2010 27" iMacs
    #2) Living in the heart of Los Angeles means that I have access to many Apple Stores, and other Apple retail outlets. Because of this, I have been able to personally view about 10-12 other 27" (and even some 21.5") iMacs over the last month.
    #3) Out of the 15 (or so) iMacs I have viewed, only 3 of them I considered to be near perfect.
    #4) Out of the 15 (or so) only one has been perfect IMO. There was no visible yellow tint, or gray banding. (my 2nd replacement, or 3rd iMac that had a cluster of dead pixels) Dead Freaking Pixels!!!! still pisses me off.
    #5) Out of the 15 (or so) iMacs I have viewed, only 3 of them I considered to be pretty bad.
    #6) The rest of them had slight issues, and I would guess that the average user would not notice the problems (without being shown where they are).

    On a side note: Those of use who do photo editing, or graphic design are more concerned with a consistent and uniform display than most other users.

    So, you can see where I came with my guess of 70% (with issues).

    If it is that high, why not have 70% of the people return their iMacs?

    I think it has to do with the level of, or how bad the issue is. It also has to do with how easily you notice these issues. My first BTO 27" iMac was pretty bad. The worst one of the all of them. It was easy to tell that it had a significant yellowing tinge on the bottom half of the screen. The gray banding was just as bad, or worse. The problem for me is, once I identified the problem on the first iMac, (which was pretty bad) it became easier for me to see the issue(s) on other iMacs. Even ones that were not that bad. Maybe some of them would have even been acceptable to me, if I did not have the really bad one initially. What I am saying is that I am (somewhat) programmed to pick out these issues. That actually sucks for me. (However, again consider that the one of the primary uses of this machine was for Photoshop and LR3).

    My advise for anyone who owns, or is thinking of getting a new iMac. Do not look at, or perform the tests to check for the yellow tint, or gray banding. If it is not detectable in your every day use, then do not worry about it and enjoy it. Be a happy iMac owner.

    For those of us who have a reason to actually care about the quality of the display (for the reasons stated above) or who have been unlucky and received bad displays, please do not label us as trolls, or belittle us.

    For those that are happy with their iMacs, I am happy for you. You have (at least) a good one, and maybe even a perfect one. It does not really matter. You are happy with it and it is a great machine. It is just too bad that these issues really do exist, and not everyone gets the chance to be happy with their new iMac.

    If you think that people post their bad experiences because they want to make the happy iMac users unhappy, you are wrong. We are just pissed off that we are not (yet) one of the happy ones.
  2. Iamthinking Suspended

    Jul 31, 2010
    amen, Brother.

    I would just like to be one of the happy imac customers too.

    I too have looked at many of the iMacs made in the past year (work in IT at a university campus with many apple labs).

    To me, so far 100% of the 21.5" monitors are not up to a standard that I could get used to (coming from many years of winPC's with decent-to-pro grade monitors attached.

    So I have ordered a 27" imac (even though I didn't really need/want that big of a screen) in the hope that I could get in the 30% club- people with perfect or near-perfect displays.

    fingers and toes crossed- was hoping to get my 27" tomorrow but, as is becoming the norm, the Apple rep screwed up the shipping and is coming slow-boat instead of express. Which means I will probably not be able to report back on chapter 5 of my imac story until Spet. 13th or thereabouts.


  3. Yamcha macrumors 68000

    Mar 6, 2008
    I've been through two 21.5" iMacs, I took the first one to Apple store because of yellow tint and dead pixels, the yellow tint was hardly noticeable, infact I didn't notice it until I saw certain shades of grey. I got a replacement, and it too has dead pixels and yellow tint, this one has much more noticeable yellow tint.

    Honestly I think the yellow tint exists on every single screen thats on the iMac, its just that its hardly noticeable in some screens and more noticeable on others.

    And also, it really depends on the person, I think most people won't even notice it, but designers like myself probably will. I have learned to live with it, I also have dead/stuck pixels, like 5 of them, either that or its dust, I cannot figure it out..

    I think what Apple should do is have either better quality control, or you know what stop using LG's IPS displays, move on to a different supplier..
  4. Northgrove macrumors 65816

    Aug 3, 2010
    Yeah, I think it's part of the screen design with the LED design. Which is why Dell's U2711 model (another 27" IPS) doesn't exhibit this particular issue at all.
  5. henrikrox macrumors 65816


    Feb 3, 2010
    im glad that you draw the conclusion that 70% have the issues based on 4 imacs, and living in a big city ;) heh
  6. symbology thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    Wow, thanks for the great insight and the thoughtful response.

    I guess reading comprehension is not your strong suit?

    BTW, I am being generous when I say 70%
  7. Tec972 macrumors regular

    Aug 19, 2010
    Totally agree. Im on my second and they were both yellow. I noticed right away without anything to compare it to, but I know how a monitor should look.

    I have said this before, that if the majority of customers had either one of my displays they probably wouldn't know any better and think they have a perfect unit.

    As a brand new iMac customer, I thought the yellow panel issue was resolved, the truth of the matter is that it's not as bad as the '09 models but its still an issue.

    Here at work, I have 26 LCD's sitting in front of me and about 5-6 of them exhibit different color when they should all look the same, however they don't buy premium LCD's here either.
  8. cobrasneverdie macrumors member

    Jul 27, 2010
    I'm either lucky or colour blind
    I have not had any problems with my screen and it's refurbished... I'm sure this doesn't make a huge difference. *knock on wood*
    my sympathies to those who had to send theirs back
  9. IndustrialSpace macrumors 6502a

    Dec 31, 2009

    You would be correct. This yellow tint issue is unique to Apple's LED backlit display. All of the iMacs have some yellow, as it is inherent in the design and stated in their patent.

    See below:

  10. jonwd7 macrumors member

    Nov 19, 2009
    Based on the number of iMacs he has viewed with his own eyes (about 15) he can create a statistical model that tells him with what confidence he can assert that the actual defect rate is within a certain range of 70% (plus or minus, say, 5%). In other words: Shut up.

    You can also combine your data with the data of others who have been through multiple returns. There are several people who have been through 3 or 4 iMacs, and only a few ever get a non-yellow screen. For our uses, those who report one perfect iMac are statistically useless because of the high rate of false negatives (People simply aren't observant). I imagine you are right about being generous about the 70% figure.

    I myself am going to an Apple Store today. I will report back how many iMac screens are yellow vs how many not. In fact, I'm going to be walking away with a 2010 iMac to replace my 2009... Possibly. If I don't see a single good screen in the store I will probably ask to inspect the screen in-store and if they don't let me I will leave.
  11. symbology thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    Good luck, I hope you get a good one. The gray banding along the bottom of the screen is a major issue for me, and something that I see more often (during normal use) than yellow tint. When bad, both are intolerable.
  12. Dwhite78 macrumors regular

    Jul 30, 2010
    Your sample size is no where near large enough to infer those kind of claims to the entire population of 27" iMacs

    Thats not to say there isn't a problem, there most certainly is, you can tell that just by reading the posts here.

    Statistics people get kind of irritated when you pull meaningless numbers out of the air with no real way to accurately derive said stats. :)

    FYI: I have two perfect 27" imacs with now color or banding issues. I tested all of them quite throughly.
  13. Btom macrumors 6502a

    Nov 19, 2009
    First of all, congrats on your perfect iMacs. This means that there are some good units out there....
    The most troubling thing in all the iMac display problem is multiple people reporting multiple exchanges required to get an acceptable - for them - display. If it had happen to just one person, I'd say it was a fluke. But we have dozens and dozens of this kind of reports (4 - 5 - 6 and more exchanges) and this means trouble (even for the irritable statistics people): It means either a high percentage of the faulty units, or recycling of the return units, being used for replacements (without fixing the problem).

    Tom B.
  14. symbology thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    Did I not qualify my statement by saying this is MY OPINION????????????

    Also, if you actually read my post, you will see that out of the 15 units I viewed, really only one of them was "perfect" as far as yellowing, or the gray banding. It just happened to have had a cluster of dead pixels.

    Please tell me, how do you explain the Apple Care representative telling my that "yellowing" is normal on the iMac displays and that they could not guarantee one without it? Or, how about the manager at the Apple Store who said "they all have that gray bar on the bottom of the screen, even mine at home."

    Do you see the possibility that one person could be happy with the display on iMac "A", yet another person could be bothered by it? I am not trying to claim that your iMacs are not perfect. Just bringing up the point. I just feel that there is a large percentage of iMac owners out there that are happy with their machines, yet another owner of the same machine may not be satisfied.

    We will look at my wife's time with one of our iMacs for example.

    She used one of our new iMacs off and on for almost two days. Doing email and web surfing etc....... After these two days (while she was reading her yahoo mail) I asked her if she saw anything wrong with the color of the display, or if she noticed anything strange. She said no, not at all. I then opened up another session of yahoo mail and had both windows looking at her inbox. I then moved one of the windows to the left of the screen, and the other to the right side. I then pointed to the upper left of the screen, and asked her to look at the color of the white background behind the text. Then I asked her to look at the lower right and look at the same white background. What do you know, she said they do not look the same. She could see the lower portion of the screen, especially the lower right was a warm "yellow" white while the upper portion was a cool "blueish" white. I then went on to ask her if she sees a shadow at the bottom of the web page (the gray banding) and she said yes.

    You see, these issues existed on this machine, but my wife did not notice them at all. Or she did, but did not really care. It did not bother her use of the machine at all. Which is great for her and users like her. However, she does not do any kind of serious work on the machine such as photo editing etc.... She is just your average every day computer user.
  15. IndustrialSpace macrumors 6502a

    Dec 31, 2009
    See. Even Apple employees will NOW acknowledge that this is normal or common on the iMac. They ALL have the yellow and grey tints.

    You either live with it (becasue you HAVE to own an iMac) or return it for another system combo or a PC. Its that simple.

    They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, while expecting different results.

    The folks who are adamant that this is NOT a widespread problem are nothing short of dolts with deficient reasoning abilities.
  16. TheBritishBloke macrumors 68030


    Jul 21, 2009
    United Kingdom
    The fact is, it isn't as widespread as everyone makes it out to be. When the whole fiasco with the iPhone 4 Antennagate occurred, even national news stations were broadcasting about it, but I've never heard a single thing about huge amounts of iMac returns etc, you have to remember that on MR Forums, you only get people who need help with something/want to complain.

    Sorry about your situation though! But unless you actually have accurate statistical data to support your 70% claim..
  17. Iamthinking Suspended

    Jul 31, 2010
    #17 do you know this situation is not widespread? What was the critical mass when the Antennagate story broke? Were all the people affected before the problem was "outed" simply a few people that wanted to complain? You want to call in to question someone's 70% claim. Fine. Do you have any stats to support YOUR claim that "it isn't as widespread as everyone makes it out to be" ???

    If not, you're just as guilty of tossing around rhetoric as if it's fact. At least the person making the 70% claim is *attempting* to back his opinion with some stats. What are you backing your claims up with?
    1.) Problem isn't widespread........Numbers?
    2.) On macforums, you only get people that need help/want to complain...Numbers? Supporting evidence?

    ...thought not.

    Oh I know, we're just supposed to believe your word as if it's gospel because you're British? ! ;-)

    - Iamthinking
  18. Btom macrumors 6502a

    Nov 19, 2009
    Maybe it is just me, but this sentence sounds mildly threatening. Actually I don't think one needs accurate statistical data to make a rough estimate (wouldn't need to make one).

    Tom B.
  19. archipellago macrumors 65816

    Aug 16, 2008

    In the grand scheme of things Apple sell virtually 'no iMacs'.

    Worldwide computer market is 300m units. The iMac won't even likely make up 0.5% of that number.

    its irrelevant from most points of view (statistically)
  20. symbology thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    You mean the lines I have seen at the Apple Stores have not been for iMacs? :eek:
  21. kristian21 macrumors newbie

    Mar 30, 2006
    My first iMac is perfect in every way. And yeah I used a bunch of other ones and all different models and I am a graphic designer. No yellowing or gray band at all.
  22. symbology thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    Just out of curiosity, how do you feel you rate when it comes to common sense and the ability to reason?

    Why is it people tend to ignore the large number of unhappy iMac owners? Better yet, they ignore the comments made by Apple in regards to some of these issues? I know that I have not the only one that was told by Apple that yellowing is normal. I read it on this very site maybe 3-4 weeks ago. After ordering my first 27" i7 unfortunately.
  23. MassMacFan macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2010
    Agreed. I'll do a separate post on my experiences thus far - but the short version is that I returned a BTO 21" iMac due to yellow tint and was hoping that #2 would be clean. My odds were at least 50/50, no? Nope. Replacement arrived this afternoon with similar annoying tint. So I'm 0-2. As was said in another post, the process wears you down. I think I'm done - I can't spend 2 more weeks on the phone, packing up, waiting for FedEx, etc.. My only advice is to skip BTO at all costs if you have a retail store nearby so you can open & exchange as needed.
  24. Btom macrumors 6502a

    Nov 19, 2009
    Just by curiosity: Was your second iMac really new, or did you have even a shade of an uneasy feeling that something was odd about the package/packaging/unit? Like it was open and closed or something? Any clue would do.

    Tom B.
  25. rcpilot44 macrumors newbie

    Aug 6, 2010
    I am very tempted to send the thread starters data data to Steve Jobs and see what he says. I currently own a PC but my wife has a MBP. I use her lap top all the time and love it. When I bought my Samsung 20 inch monitor several years ago I also read a lot of BS about there was something wrong with this brand or that brand monitor. The university I work at has several computer labs with about 50 iMacs in each one of them. They look good to me. I spoke to the Dean for the Masters degree program in computer science and she said that there is not a problem with the iMACS. The graduate students use them all the time and haven't been any complaints. I have done a lot of research to earn two Master degrees and a sample size of 15 or so is statistically not reliable to make even a remote hypothesis.


    Check out this link and you see that the forum is full of people complaining about their PC monitors> They have the same complaints that I see here.

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