Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

Summary: PC Magazine Labs decided to install Windows 7 (build 6801) on a new MacBook Pro and although it installed ok, things quickly went down hill after that.When I watched their video I couldn't get past how bad the glare is on these new machines, even indoors.


PC Magazine Labs decided to install Windows 7 (build 6801) on a new MacBook Pro and although it installed ok, things quickly went down hill after that.

When I watched their video I couldn't get past how bad the glare is on these new machines, even indoors. Check out the glare starting about 9 seconds into the clip, it's like a mirror. I don't think that I can tolerate that level of glare, but people tell me that it's ok and that "all you have to do is tilt the screen."

Glossy/glassy screens = glare and no one can convince me otherwise. Tell me about your thoughts on notebook glare in the Talkback.

Topics: Software, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility, Operating Systems, Windows

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  • Dog With A Bone

    Man, you are like a dog with a bone. Glare, rumble, rumble
    glossy, rumble, rumble GLARE!!!!!!!!!! I think we get the point.
    You are slightly displeased with the glossy/glassy screens.
    Apple is not going to change them so it is time to move on
    or talk about the real problem which is the fact Apple
    ignored an important (To me anyway.) segment of their
    customer base. They should have taken designers and
    photographers into consideration but they didn't.
  • RE: Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

    yes that is why we use ibm/lenovo notebooks
  • Are they cheaper?

    That would explain it, using up all the glare stock at a great price point, then once all used up, declare they are listening to customers and introducing anti-glare screens, at which point the entire universe will thank Steve for his forward thinking. :D

  • Always been the weakness of their model

    ... you can't go elsewhere (psystar not withstanding). If they
    stuff up, you're stuck, and the whole apple thing quickly
    wears thin. I mean, I've used them these past 10 years, but
    its a subtle thing their dance with the expectations of their
    fans. They usually capitulate when the roaring gets loud
    enough. Here in Australia the new models were accompanied
    by a substantial price hike (thanks, subprime!) and one feels
    them slipping back into niche, like the apple of old...
    • RE: Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

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  • Or to put it another way,

    For every iphone there is a cube, or a dalmation iMac.
  • RE: Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

    My girlfriend has one. I've asked her a few times if she
    notices the glare?

    Off yes, it's like a mirror.

    On, no, you see straight through it to a brightly lit screen.

    Put it this way: windows are made of glass, but they don't
    stop you seeing through them.

    Make of that what you will.
  • RE: Why glare is a bad thing on a notebook

    I specifically ordered the glossy screen for the enhanced
    detail. Never had a problem with glare. I sometimes tilt the
    screen to a different angle. I'm really pleased with mine
    Steve Liebenberg
  • It was a problem I noted to a friend

    she went to a retailer to begrudgingly find a replacement notebook for her 4 yr old notebook that was ready to be retired, and amongst the problems I noted was that all the screens on the store offerings had glossy screens and no mattes. Under a number of conditions she will experience glare, especially in comparison to her older laptop.

    For the most part, I'd prefer a matte, because I can get a good lcd monitor with a more matte like finish, but notebooks seem to be glassed away and more prone to fingerprints and blemishes (though they buff away with the proper effort). And though I like a good mirror, I don't expect one with my notebook, . . . maybe it's the ADD making me note all the things going on around me reflected in the screen, and not fully concentrate on the notebook contents. Oh well, maybe she'll get a screen protector that will angle away the glare issues, and she need only to pump up the brightness a little, . . . but I'm down on more gloss and less matte offerings. Does gloss really make a more cinematic and clear screen?
  • And this kids

    is what happens when a "reporter" gets agendized. He starts spouting propaganda instead of fact. Note how the blogger ignores basic optics, pretending what the camera sees with its different angle is the same as what the user sees. Note how he ignores the fact that the user is apparently having no difficulty at all seeing and using the screen.

    No, you see, glossy notebooks are satanic, worse even G.W. Bush and dumber than Sara Palin, and reality be damned.
    • One mans opinion

      Frgough -

      What I published was neither propaganda, nor fact. It is opinion, *my* opinion.

      Rather than post hyperbole, which ironically you accuse me of, why don't you tell us about the all the benefits of glassy screens? Why do you love them so much? Please tell us!

      There's "no difficulty in seeing and using the screen?" Is that a benefit? Sounds like you're in denial to me.

      - Jason
      Jason D. O'Grady
      • The benefit of a glossy screen..

        is brightness.

        A matte screen is matte because it diffuses the light that
        hits it. The image you see is also diffused.

        A glossy screen doesn't do that: There much less loss of
        brightness. Now you can use less power in backlighting
        your screen, and save on your battery use.

        In fact, I'd say that a matte screen may be fine on a
        desktop, where power usage isn't as important, but is
        wrong for a laptop.

        By the way, I use my MacBook (glossy screen) on my
        commute (train, not driving), with all sorts of different
        lighting (sunlight, tunnels....), and have found the new
        screen much easier to use than my old matte iBook.
      • Glossy is easier to read outside.

        That alone is a HUGE benefit. This is in no part due to the
        higher luminance the glossy screens provide. It is also
        because the matte screens suffer flare really badly.
      • Opinions Are Like...

        I prefer the glossy screen, but I have to admire your dedication to your obsession. As for me, I like the clarity, the color quality, and the brightness of the glossy screen.

        And, on my big screen HD TV.

        But then, I may be in "denial." Better to deny a problem than be obsessed by it?at least as far as your video example in this article goes.

        You see, I thought I was going to read a blog about Windows 7 installed on a MBP. Silly me because I knew beforehand it was an O'Grady blog.
  • Beats the flare on the Matte screens

    The new screens are 2-3X easier to use outside compared to
    the old Matte MacBook Pros.

    Did the side be side and it is not comparison. If you want to
    use these outside, the new screens clobber the old screens
    hands down.

    Color accuracy (while "prettier") is a bit lower with the new
    screens but not by much.
  • My Goodness!

    How did we manage watching TV all those years with those hellacious glossy screens! Blast those satanic glossy
    windshields on cars! Sheesh.

    The image on a glossy screen is clearer, richer and truer
    than what you can get on a matte screen. The viewing
    angle is much better. You are basically looking through the
    fog on a matte screen.

    It is extremely easy to adjust for glare especially on a

    Obviously Apple did user testing on this and discovered
    most people prefer the glossy screen.
    • Just a quick comment

      I personally have no real preference here, but...

      [i]How did we manage watching TV all those years with those hellacious glossy screens! Blast those satanic glossy
      windshields on cars![/i]

      TV screens are hellacious. The glare is incredible. Can't hardly watch a movie with the lights on. Overhead lights aren't too bad...but lamps? Yikes. Nothing like trying to watch a flick and seeing yourself sitting on the couch reflected in the screen instead. Forget having a window in the vicinity. When we were re-siding the house a few years back, we had to take down the awning, and every night around 6:00 we got a documentary of the surface of the sun on every channel, if you get my drift. We couldn't watch TV in the living room until after the sun went down, because you simply couldn't see it. I'd like to note that at no time is the sun every DIRECTLY through that window. It does, however, let light in...as windows tend to do. I noticed the last time I was in a department store that many of the TVs they sold had matte screens. I bet I can guess why. :)

      And windshields DO create glare. I don't think I even need to support this statement, because everyone has driven at night at some point, I'm sure. We won't even get into the glare from the shiny, wet roads during the rain. Haven't you ever noticed how hard it is to see when the interior light is on at night?

      Maybe you don't agree with which is better, and that's fine. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and far be it from me to stop you. My laptop has a glass screen. It's not much of a hassel for me until I'm outside (although fingerprints are a real problem). But it's not a question that shiny surface = glare. That's just basic optics. In fact, the reason the surface is shiny in the first place is because it reflects light, which is the very definition of glare (to shine brightly, or to reflect a harsh light). It's only a question of whether you find it tolerable. I do. Apparently you do as well. The author does not. No big deal, really.
    • It was a pain in the backside.

      I can remember adjusting curtains (yes, I am old, blinds rule today, lol), moving constantly to see the screen clearly, and watching TV during daylight hours was a serious pain. Probably why we all lived (unlike today) outside from dusk till dawn playing.

  • Wrong Place (nt)

  • And with this post...

    ... I will stop reading your blog. It's time to stop your
    constant focus/whining/ranting on just one issue.
    Comments like "...no one can convince me otherwise"
    mean (to me) you're not interested in expanding your
    views or knowledge, and that's a disappointment.

    I've been reading your thoughts since very early PowerPage
    days - we even traded a few e-mails more than a dozen
    years ago.

    I don't see you complaining about the screen of your
    iPhone this much, but it seems to have the same glossy

    It's time to move on.