Which MacBook Pro should I get?? LCD quality extremely important!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Crunch, Sep 20, 2008.

  1. Crunch macrumors 6502a


    Jun 26, 2008
    Crazy L.A.
    Hi all...I'm considering purchasing a MacBook Pro.

    I currently have an IBM/Lenovo Thinkpad 15" UXGA w/ an AFFS IPS LCD.

    And that's where the question really lies. IBM, and now Lenovo are longer producing IPS displays, which are the very best screens that there ever have been. And I lucked out, and got one that Hydis made. One with FFS (Frag Field Schiedling), and I found out I even have one of their Advanced ones, hence AFFS. Any native-resolution wallpaper (1600x1200 in my case) looks like you're part of the image/environment, etc. that it displays. It also has full 180-degree viewing angle, and it's super bright.

    Being that Mac's are considered "the more expensive" laptops, are there models that have either IPS, or something similar? The price doesn't matter. It's that I've been used to IPS screens since I bought my first one, a T42p, 4 years ago, and never considered anything else.

    Now that the Thinkpads are in Lenovo's hands, IPS is gone. Very disappointing. So I decided to hang on to my T60p as long as I can, and upgraded it to the strongest CPU that my system board will take, which turned out to be the Core 2 Duo 2.33GHz (T7600). For my wireless N network, I also put in the Atheros 802.11n card, which is awesome!

    I looked around on Apple's websites, and I cannot find anything very informative regarding the screen quality of its products.

    I'd love to get a 17" WUXGA widescreen model, and with a gorgeous screen, and, as I said, IPS-like color precision, wide viewing angle, and the highest resolution possible.

    Who manufacturers the LCD's for them? Do I get to choose from which manufacturer, e.g. Samsung vs. LG?

    Thank you all in advance! :)
  2. dal20402 macrumors 6502

    Apr 24, 2006
    Unfortunately, IPS displays for laptops are no longer being made by any manufacturer. They just weren't profitable, since they are much more expensive to produce and only a small number of customers knew the difference. The only one you can even find for sale these days, if you're lucky (it's being replaced this month) is the much smaller Thinkpad x61t with the 1440x1050 screen option.

    The best screen available on a MBP is the LED-backlit 1920x1200 unit which is optional on the 17" MBP. But even that one, like every laptop made today, will have the narrow vertical viewing angle characteristic of all TN panels. For some reason that no one understands, there is no higher-res option on the 15" model. 1440x900 is standard on the 15", 1680x1050 on the 17".

    As usual with Apple, they keep things simple and don't tell the consumer much. Your MBP panel could be made by LG, Samsung, or Chi Mei. There are subtle differences, and many people feel the LG panels are best, but it's very difficult to ensure you're getting a particular one.

    By the low standards of TN panels, Apple's are among the best, both because of the bright and durable LED backlighting and because they tend to have few dead pixels. But, unfortunately, any laptop you buy today, from any manufacturer, will have a TN panel with all its limitations. There is no replacement for your IPS Thinkpad.
  3. PDE macrumors 68020

    Nov 16, 2005
    Yes, very regrettably they discontinued those flexview panels because they couldn't guarantee sufficient quantity from their suppliers. At least that's the story. I really don't think any of the current crop of MBP display are comparable, but I would agree with the previous poster that the high def LED on the 17" is the best of the current crop.

    As for the 15" MBPs, you can't choose which manufacturer you get. I've used all of the different panels and the best one I had was one from AUO. Unfortunately that one became inverted and I couldn't use it anymore. The second best is the one I have now which is a Samsung. LGs are usually very good, but have some weird shadows/backlight bleed when watching movies in dark environments. Daytime and ordinary use excellent. Chimei seem to produce the worst units with severe yellow hue throughout, poor viewing angles, mediocre contrast and just nothing very redeeming. The samsung is pretty good and is very consistent in terms of illumination distribution, color and contrast. I feel it's not great in any one area, but feels like a good and balanced display.

    Just my opinion, of course.
  4. MVApple macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2008
    There are only a few laptops that I know of that come with an IPS screen and all of those are tablets. The Fujitsu T2010 comes with an amazing IPS screen. As the person above me mentioned Lenovo's tablets also come with IPS screens, there last model can still be purchased, and there new model is coming out but it has a 12" widescreen wxga screen which is lower resolution. Motion also uses IPS screens but they only make slates. HP's tablets also use IPS screens I believe but I'm not too sure about them.
  5. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    All Macs notebooks ATM use inferior 6-bit TN panels. No S-IPS/PVA/MVA options sorry.
  6. Crunch thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jun 26, 2008
    Crazy L.A.
    Gotya everyone, and thanks for all the replies.

    Man, I guess I'll get a monitor, as I have an Advanced Mini dock, which has a DVI port. There's one that has PVR technology, which is supposed to be better than TN and VA panels.

    Let's see what the future holds. And to the person who asked what AFFS is. It's basically Super-IPS. I gave my dad an SXGA+ 15" T60p, with IPS, and I did a side-by-side, which proved that there is quite a difference between even between IPS and S-IPS.

    I don't like going "back in time" as far as technology goes. And now I'm super duper spoiled with this almost one-of-a-kind 15" UXGA beauty that Hydis made for only 3 months for Lenovo, and only for very specific 15" models. I guess I'll wait to see if they ever come back with IPS, and/or Super IPS, as my baby is still under warranty until mid-2009.

    Thanks to everyone who responded! This has been an interesting discussion. :)

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