Unibody MPB 17" users, is the (glossy) screen any good?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Anuba, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. Anuba macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #1
    I'm thinking about getting an MBP 17" but I just read a review in Macworld Sweden where they said that the screen kinda sucks. I don't mind the glare (it's an acceptable tradeoff compared to the fugliness of the anti-glare option), but I still want a good screen. Macworld.se said that it's slightly worse than an iMac 24" screen, and I happen to own one of those and I'm not very impressed - it's uneven, has yellowish blotches, the viewing angle could have been better, it goes into some stroboscope-ish flickering extravaganza on the odd occasion, and the color accuracy is so-so.

    So, is the screen acceptable for professional use (I do a lot of Flash trailers and occasional Photoshop use, but I'm not some anal retentive color-gamut-obsessed print person who starts crying if my CMYK colors are 0.00001% off)?
     
  2. Pagga macrumors 6502

    Pagga

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Location:
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    #2
    This site obviously hasn´t got a clue. First of all the resolution gives alot more detail on the 17" than the 24". Secondly it has a newer and better graphics card. Thirdly, and most importantly, colours are much, much better. On the glossy version you also get deeper colours (especially blacks).

    On a more subjectiv level, I will argue as a photographer that the Imac screen is virtually unusable for serious editing (I use CS4). When the 17" is calibrated, it is actually quite good.

    Finally I´d like to ad that the glossy versus matte debate seems little more than a matter of personal taste. Know yourself and your needs, and you´ll know which one to get.

    cheers,
    P
     
  3. Anuba thread starter macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #3
    Not sure what you mean. The dimensions are obviously different but the the 1920x1200 resolution is the same, and the quality or age of the video card may affect image quality, but not the quality of the actual screen.

    OK. I expected the quality to be above average but I don't feel I can trust Apple 100% when it comes to screens. Apart from the issues with the iMac screen, I was shopping for a 30" screen a couple of years ago, did a little research and discovered that while both Apple and Dell used components by LG, the Dell screen used a later generation LG screen with better viewing angle and contrast, despite costing much less than the Cinema 30". You never know when Apple uses the best stuff and when they cut corners.
     
  4. shoppy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2007
    Location:
    Hants
    #4
    I love mine and have ordered a new one, for me so I can pass the old one on to my wife. 24" imac had screen problems I had uneven screen brightness and colour on mine last year and sent it back twice.

    Here are some photos, I love it compared to the others purely for the battery life
     

    Attached Files:

  5. NickM macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2009
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    USA
    #5
    I see a Panda and a mousepad with a bamboo graphic... coincidence?
     
  6. darrenscerri macrumors regular

    darrenscerri

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Location:
    Malta
    #6
    I have a Unibody MBP 15" with a glossy screen and couldn't have been happier! The quality is excellent, it's bright and sharp, and in most of the cases you can completely eliminate glare by pushing up the brightness.
     
  7. JtheLemur macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    #7
    Calibrate it, and it's an awesomely fantastic panel. Hell, even just use an Adobe sRGB profile and that should be good if you're not doing pro work!
     
  8. Mark2000 macrumors regular

    Mark2000

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    #8
    The screen is excellent. The best LCD I've ever used as far as brightness and sharpness and all over enjoyment of use. And the glass panel is part of it. But the color gamut is still subpar because of the continued 6-bit dithering. You are only seeing 250,000 colors and it shows in any gradient. When I do a gray gradient from white to black I get stripes instead of smooth color. And with the 9c98 panel that I have its tougher than most other monitors. I can usually calibrate well by eye, but no on this machine. Even a spyder3 profile gives me greys that are blue at one level of darkness and orange in another.
     
  9. YahonMaizosz macrumors regular

    YahonMaizosz

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    #9
    Guys, I have a question.. Are the 17" MBP screen LESS bright than the 15.4" MBP??

    I am about to purchase one in an Apple store and the 17" screen seems to be very dark, even though Apple really seems to make a big fuss of its screen superiority over the 15.4" version...

    Can someone please tell me if it is as bright, less or more.. Thanks..
     
  10. erratikmind macrumors 6502a

    erratikmind

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Location:
    S.F./Las Vegas
    #10
    Since you are going to be at the Apple store, ask for a side by side comparison.

    Regardless of what you may choose . . . Enjoy your new MBP. ;)
     
  11. srl7741 macrumors 68020

    srl7741

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
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    In my world
    #11
    I own both uMBP's and they 17" is brighter or appears brighter. Using the same image side by side the 17" screen looks a little better. My eyes are not perfect but my point is I've been very happy with my 17 screen.
     
  12. uiop. macrumors 68020

    uiop.

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    Jul 22, 2008
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    #12
    Why do you have 3 different MacBooks?
     
  13. Anuba thread starter macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #13
    Ugh, I'm torn. I've kept going back and forth between the MBP 17" and a Dell Precision M6400 Covet for weeks now.

    On one hand the M6400 Covet gives you an edge-to-edge LED screen with 100% Adobe color gamut, as well as optional dual HDDs with RAID config, quad-core and up to 16 GB of RAM. Plus a nifty trackpad feature that turns the trackpad into an illuminated jog/shuttle wheel you can use for stuff like navigating the timeline in Flash, After Effects etc. It has a docking port which docks with a combined port replicator and table stand, which means I'll have a clutter (=cable) free desk, tons of USB ports, and no plugging/unplugging half a dozen cablesi when I move it to and from the desk. It includes a 3-year NBD on-site support plan and I know from experience that the support is great, they stop by your house and switch out defective components so you never get more than 24 hrs downtime.

    As for cons, well it's effing huge, about twice as thick as an MBP 17" and weighs a pound more. And it's ugly. Aluminium, sure, but orange? Yikes. And it only runs Windows. Personally I don't consider Windows itself a con (Win7 is shaping up to be great), the con is that I won't be able to run both OSX and Windows on it. The battery life blows, too (I'm sure it's large, but with all those desktop-grade components the power consumption is brutal). And in typical Dell fashion it has a couple of redundant legacy ports from the 1950's.

    On the other hand there's the MBP 17" with its thinness and stellar design, the awesome battery, the ability to run both Snow Leopard and Win7, dual video cards, and the huge trackpad with gestures. I could partly substitute Dell's desk stand/dock with a Rain Design mStand. One less pound to lug around, too.

    Cons: Single HDD, 8 GB max, no quad, no docking, and apparently some sort of 6-bit dithering crap that chops gradients into stripes. 3-year support plan costs a lot extra yet doesn't really offer anything other than basic warranty extension. No on-site service feels awkward and risky, if it breaks down I'll have to send it away for X number of days as the nearest service center is 60 miles away (no Apple stores in my country other than the online one).

    Ugh, it's like choosing between a fugly, overweight girl who is amazing in bed, makes world-class food and drives her own car, and a drop-dead gorgeous supermodel who's so-so in bed, a so-so cook, and has no driver's license so you have to drive her everywhere.
     
  14. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2008
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    #14
    Great analogy, but I think your post should have been its own thread.

    But you have Windows versus OS X.

    Good luck with your decision.
     
  15. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location Location
    #15
    The Apple 30" screen isn't a generation behind. It's like 2 or 3 LCD panel generations behind. :p



    That's all very true, but you KNOW that other companies like Dell will give you more options. They'll always give you the lower spec'ed, but thinner and more portable computers, and yet will also give you the 1.5 - 2" thick, 9.5 lb monster 16 to 18" laptops that are meant to be desktop replacements 98% of the time, and a portable unit 2% of the time.

    For myself, I was thinking of getting a 17" MBP as my next laptop, but I'm mobile all the time. For you, it really depends on your working style. ;)
     
  16. aleni macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    #16
    i own this 17" for 2 weeks. the screen is absolutely gorgeous. but the high 1900x1200 res give me strain on my eyes because everything look alot smaller than the 15" unibody i previously owned. guess i have to give my eyes time to adapt.

    and if you work behind sunscreen, the glossy screen gives you the glare that can be finished off by turning your brightness up. but by turning the brightness up, the more strain my eyes get. so i had to move my work desk to make it not to give glares much.
     
  17. Anuba thread starter macrumors 68040

    Anuba

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    #17
    Well, I run a one-man-company out of my home. I have a small office/music studio in our apartment where I have a tower PC with a 3-screen setup, with the laptop on a second desk on the side. I don't turn to look at it much except when the mailbox goes bing-bong. When I get tired of sitting in the studio, or just generally lazy, I bring the laptop to the couch or the bed and continue working there. Had that been the whole story, the laptop could weigh 25 lbs for all I care.

    But then twice a year or so I end up working at some client's place for a few weeks, sometimes months, and suddenly portability becomes a major factor. Those times I wish I had a MacBook Air. But the rest of the year I would hate myself for getting something with such a puny screen, when I really should've gotten a 25 lbs, 20" "laptop" that I can wheel 30 feet back and forth between the studio and the living room. ;)

    So the MBP 17" seemed like the best compromise. You get the big workspace and reasonable portability. The M6400 fails in the latter test. And I probably would have gone with the MBP 17" long ago, had it not been that every time I do, something bad about the MBP crops up. Build quality issues. Overheating issues with Windows. Horror photos of the glossy screen's reflections. A screen "worse than iMac" (yikes). 6-bit dithering. Hinge cracks.

    Apple reminds me of French automaker Citroën. They pretty much invented "think different". One radical idea after the other. They produced the first unibody (sound familiar?) car, which was simultaneously also one of the first mass produced cars with front wheel drive. They combined bold, striking design with crazy innovations; the legendary hydropneumatic suspension, directional headlights, in every nook and cranny you'd find an unusual, and often very smart, solution to any given problem. Out of this grew a cult-like brand loyalty (sound familiar?), and the devotees were known as "Citroënistes".

    There was just one problem though: The cars excelled at breaking down. The drivers were reduced to mere guinea pigs, when Citroën just kept piling new and virtually untested innovations on them, yet the Citroënistes were so fiercely loyal, they put up with just about anything.
     
  18. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Location Location Location
    #18
    I don't think you got what I was trying to say. I'm saying you're either going to have to choose a 17" MBP, which is portable and weak (relatively speaking), or a 17" Dell that has far more processing power, but is 1.5" thick, heavier, and has poor battery life. For me, portability from a 17" laptop is necessary. I want the large resolution of the 17" (unless a 15" MBP got a 1680x1050 screen next update) and yet also need the portability, so for me, the 17" MBP is the only option out there. For you, I couldn't say if the Dell is better because I don't know how much you need the portability. If it's going to sit on a desk all the time, the Dell is a better desktop replacement due to its Quad Core-ness, 100% Adobe gamut, awesome docking port, etc.

    Well they also invented "Think Compromise" in the computer market. :p The designs are nice and obviously inspired rather than simply "engineered", or a collection of parts. It's great. However, it also means their hardware isn't going to serve some people at all. From the way it sounds, you may be a part of that group. :eek: If you need the portability due to how you work (and it doesn't sound like you do), AND you don't care that you need to use Windows due to the upcoming Win7, the Dell will be better.

    For those times where you work away from home, you'll just have to live with the compromise for several weeks. It's either that, or compromise with the MBP for 11 months. ;)
     
  19. shoppy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2007
    Location:
    Hants
    #19
    I don't know actually, I just love my apple computers. I have one more 17" on the way as the wife wants one for the battery life, also I hate sitting at a desk.

    I think main reason is battery life, previously I always carried two machines, now thanks to the 17" I can use one machine. BUt really no real reason.
     
  20. YahonMaizosz macrumors regular

    YahonMaizosz

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    #20
    Nice to hear that you like it.. In my opinion the 17" is still darker than the 15.4" version.. In fact, the 15.4" version is so bright that it almost rival the 20" Apple Cinema Display brightness..

    I am going to give it another shot with the 17".. I really like the high resolution, but the brightness is turning me off...
     

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