So, do you use the keyboard backlight?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by -Ryan-, Feb 4, 2010.


Do you use the keyboard backlight?

  1. Yes, all the time

    59 vote(s)
  2. Yes, sometimes

    52 vote(s)
  3. No, never

    15 vote(s)
  1. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

    Jan 28, 2009
    Just wondering whether or not people actually use the backlit keyboard? I've had several Macs with backlit keyboards and I've never felt the need to use it because I never find myself looking at the keyboard. Seems like a waste of battery to me unless you can't touch type.. Plus, it's not very good for the eyes to be using a computer in the dark anyway. :confused:

    Other views?
  2. Disc Golfer macrumors 6502a

    Dec 17, 2009
    The backlit keyboard is very annoying if you're trying to use your computer in the dark (the using-computer-in-dark-bad-for-you issue aside, gmafb) because with the glossy screen you can see the lit up keyboard reflected on the bottom few inches of the screen, obscuring what you're trying to look at. You'd think most people would be beyond hunt-and-peck typing these days anyway what now that everyone Needs A Computer for some reason. Hell I had a required typing class back in school, and it was on typewriters, so I know most other people took a typing class as well. I also don't like how the backlight lights up the areas between the keys more than the little letter it's trying to light up. It's better than the backlight on the powerbook though, which exists but actually makes the keys harder to see than if you were just squinting through the dark at unlit keys.
  3. WHM macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2008
    When I am sitting in my cosy chair watching TV with the lights on comes in handy to me....
  4. dan5.5 macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2008
    i use it all the time when its dark, just at the first or second level. Just enough to see the keys.
  5. iPhysicist macrumors 65816


    Nov 9, 2009
    You can turn it off all time - even in the dark. I do so when watching movie on it. BUT back to the reflection thing; How is the angle of your screen because if I use my MBP in the dark I usually position the screen in an angle where nothing is reflecting.

    Rwgards :)
  6. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2008
  7. iHateMacs macrumors 6502a


    Aug 13, 2008
    Coventry, UK
    It's just there for when it's needed. You are not forced to have it on. Steve Job's doesn't come round and hand deliver a writ if you don't have it on.

    It can be useful. I have a silver keyboard and at certain levels the back light can make the keyboard harder (sometimes impossible) to see than normal.

    Like any tool, use it when it's required.
  8. tkboss88 macrumors member

    Dec 23, 2009
    i love the backlit keyboard. i can type without looking at my screen but i still use the computer all the time when i'm in the dark. you could turn off the backlighting if it annoys you that much or you could turn it up just one click so it doesn't reflect on the screen. it's just nice to be able to look at the keyboard in the dark. also it looks pretty cool =D
  9. vant macrumors 65816

    Jul 1, 2009
    It's there if you need it. You can shut it off with ease if you don't.
  10. kalibar macrumors newbie

    Jan 2, 2010
    It's absurdly useful; people who are confused about its utility "because they can touch type" drive me nuts. Nobody uses the backlit keyboard for looking at the alphabet letters when composing text, but it's absurdly handy for making sure you're hitting Command+Q/Command+W/Command+F or whatever other keyboard shortcut you're trying to do. I don't know about you guys, but my muscle memory for hitting a key when I'm holding a modifier down is pretty weak compared to my touch-typing muscle memory.

    And the volume, brightness, and Exposé keys? Forget about hitting those with perfect accuracy in the dark, unless you're just really in tune with your laptop's key locations.

    How many cellphones are out there without backlit keys? (Excluding touchscreen-only phones obviously, since they're always illuminated). Truly mobile technology should always light up the inputs in low-light conditions.
  11. King Mook Mook macrumors 6502

    Yes, I use mine all the time when it is dark. Although I touch type I fin it very useful.
  12. greygray macrumors 68000


    Oct 22, 2009
  13. DJ90 macrumors member

    Feb 2, 2010
    once i get the updated MBP's imma use by it showing it off to my friends:cool: heh heh
  14. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    If I'm using the MBP in my living room, then yes, I make sure the keyboard backlight is enabled, otherwise I leave it off. With black keys, it quickly becomes difficult to use the keyboard w/o the backlight in some low light situations.
  15. OutSpoken macrumors 6502a

    Jun 9, 2009
    Yes, I use it all the time...well I actually have it set to auto light sensor, so comes on when needed.

    I find it extremely useful since I don't touch type, and the times when Ive used my laptop at night with the lights off...I'm reminded why I didnt go with the older unibody Macbook without backlit keys.
  16. GekkePrutser macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2005
    I use it a lot when watching tv series in bed. I can touch-type, but usually all I want to do is just hit a key to turn the volume up/down, skip back 10s, stuff like that. It's very hard to just hit a single key in the dark. When you're in a proper touch-typing position it's easy but I'm not going to sit up to press one key.

    I used to use my netbook for this, and I was always squinting at the keyboard. The MBP's keyboard light is SO much better.

    I also have it on during the day sometimes. Not necessary per se but it looks cool :)
  17. Alvi macrumors 65816


    Oct 31, 2008
    It's very useful in the dark, you could basically use the screen glow to illuminate the keys but this is much better visibility
  18. silverite macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2010
    Yes! it is a really handy feature!

    When I am streaming a tv show/movie on my laptop at night. I keep the backlight up by one or two notches. Just at a minimum. Ive never noticed a reflection - but it could be due to how I have the screen tilted. It is pretty useful - so I can find the buttons a lot easier. And browse the web easier at night - especially if I make a spelling/typing mistake when typing - at least its easier to go back and actually see the proper buttons when needed - though I usually do all right without looking at the keypad a lot of the times as well :)
  19. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020


    Mar 11, 2009
    To your left or right
    when i need it i use it. when i dont need it i keep it dim.
  20. Gabriel GR macrumors 6502a

    Gabriel GR

    Jul 12, 2009
    Athens, Greece
  21. mjwman macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2010

    I did not know I had illumination and I have had it 3 years!
    I have just joined this forum and learned something already!

    I set it to come on but it hasn't yet. Maybe I need to restart>
  22. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    It only turns on if the ambient light sensor says its dark enough to need it.
  23. Eric S. macrumors 68040

    Eric S.

    Feb 1, 2008
    Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    When I bought my unibody MB, I got the 2.4GHz version mainly to get this feature.
  24. M-5 macrumors 65816


    Jan 4, 2008
    I can touch-type as well, but I always have the lights on, because I don't know all the numbers/symbols/function keys reflexively. I don't use them very often, but why not just have the light on? It looks nice, and how much battery can it really waste? I bet it's negligible.
  25. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    When on full blast, which is really far too bright anyway, it seems to cut the battery estimate down by 20 minutes. On 1-4 bars, it has no effect, right where I keep it.:)

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