www.xlr8yourmac.com

Reviews and Daily News with a  Difference!
Recent Updates  | Mac Upgrades/Mods  | CPU Upgrades  | Storage  | Video  | Audio/HT  | Apps/OS/Network  | Search
News, Tips, Reviews or Questions to News at Xlr8YourMac.com
Apple AL Cinema Display FeedbackReturn to News Page

Click for iPhone accessories!
Click for iPhone accessories!

Alum Cinema Display Owner Comments
Reports Last Updated: 9/1/2006


This page is a catch-all for reports from owners of Apple Aluminum Cinema Displays and related articles/reviews.

Reader Reports: (most recent first)
I welcome other AL Cinema display (or other large LCD brand/model) owner comments. If you own an AL Cinema display and are happy with it please sent a report also. And if you have experience with other large LCD displays (previous Cinema display, or any other brand) comparisons on displays are also welcome.

(added 9/1/2006)
"Just to say I have an 18-month old Apple 20" cinema display and I am delighted with it. No ghosting, no dead pixels, bright and crystal clear, and a delight to look at. No, I don't work for Apple...
Professor Trevor H."

A designer mentioned he preferred the 20in after comparing the other sizes in the previous report below.


(added 8/25/2006)
"Hi Mike, I came across this opportunity to play with and test a bunch of ACDs and thought it might come in useful for your reports page.
I work at a small newspaper and I was in charge with the overhaul of the computer network that was due long ago. All the computers were replaced along with the displays, all of them HP/Compaq PCs with PCI Express cards and one G5 dual core 2.3GHz for myself (I ask the boss to add the Mac for me in the budget 'cause I don't use PCs). All of the displays are now Apple Cinema, and I had to set them up over the weekend for all the employees and executives along with the IT manager configuring the network on the new HPs. Totaling 40 ACD-20" for the main journaling staff, 12 ACD-23" for the designers and editors & 1 ACD 30" for the big cheese himself.

This was a good chance to have a significant estimate of Apple's quality with such a large sample of units. Well, except for the 30" (which my boss ordered for himself and took it home right away), one third of the 20" ACD had some sort of either dead or stuck pixels (some of the stuck ones could be revived with a soft massage using the supplied cloth, some couldn't) and some had both. To my surprise, none of the affected had more that two bad pixels. None of the units are from the recently revised models from Apple, and since they were ordered weeks ago before the WWDC, they did not benefit from the price reduction. The 23" were in the same league, one third with a few amount of dead/stuck pixels, no more than three. I had no time to test them for uniformity or hue problems.

It took me all weekend to install the DVI capable PCI Express cards to all of the HP PCs, set up their corresponding Apple Display, calibrate them and check them out for defects (I used a free PC software kind of like the OS X "LCD Test" you -Mike- recommended to one of the previous comments, and I could accurately and easily point out the faulty pixels). None of the displays was merit for an exchange since all of the stuck pixels were either dark blue or dark red and were mostly alone, some at the edges, most of them at the center, but visible only with dark to black images. And since they are invisible with light to white backgrounds and they are going to be used by the journalists with word processing and web/mail usage, they were taken with a forgiving eye even though I recommended a return to the dealer for an exchange (not knowing if I was going to be granted that privilege without a fight).

The good news, at least for me, is that the Editor In Chief (owner/boss) was so happy with the new set-up and my advise to use Apple Displays, that he gave me a brand new 20" to take home for my Dual 2GHz G5 (Obviously I chose one from the lot with flawless pixels), and now I have it as my main screen in a dual display setup with my "old" Samsung 17" LCD. :-)

As a graphic professional, I can tell you that, for some reason, the 20" has better overall uniformity and color accuracy than the 23" as I compared them, meticulously calibrated, side by side in mirror mode with my dual core G5 at work. I was so sure of this fact that I exchanged the 23" assigned to me -as one of the designers- with one of the writer's 20" and I don't regret it (neither does he). Though I didn't see any faulty pink hues on the 23" as mentioned here by others, the color and uniformity was unmistakably superior on the 20" than the 23" (and I swapped samples, fully calibrated, to make sure of my decision), so don't tell me that I didn't crave the extra space of the 23" though, but color is first on my watch as the head designer).

This is an english speaking newspaper in South America (Venezuela) and I reviewed the 20" display in my Blog (In Spanish: http://ruraltex.blogspot.com/2006/07/la-primera-vez-que-tuve-una-pantalla.html). Hope this experience helps.
-Barton L."


(added 8/24/2006)
"I ordered a 23" Cinema Display along with my new Mac Pro. The Mac Pro isn't shipping for a few weeks but I received my display yesterday. Hooked it up to my 800MHz Titanium PowerBook G4 and while it taxes the system, it works fine. Serial number starts with 2A6281 so it's one of the upgraded models.

I initially noticed that the picture is "pinkish" compared to the CRT (Samsung SyncMaster 955DF) I had previously been using with my PowerBook. It appears to be concentrated towards the upper center of the screen, instead of being uniform. The difference is so small it's hard to tell though. It's also pink compared to the older (transparent plastic) 17" ACD's I use at my college. It does, however, resemble the hue of my PowerBook's LCD.

Aside from that, color is fantastic and it's extremely bright. No dead or stuck pixels but there appears to be dust or something under the screen in one spot (appears as a very small darkened blotch). Initially I was impressed with the deep blacks but once it got dark out I turned off all the lights, filled the screen with 100% black and noticed a bit of backlight bleeding, particularly in the lower left corner.

No image persistence or anything of that sort.

I'm currently trying to decide if it's worth exchanging it for another one (at the risk of receiving a model with the older specs, or one with worse problems).

(he later wrote)
just wanted to add a quick followup to my report. An Expert Mode calibration using Apple's Display Calibrator Assistant, a 50% gray desktop, and my naked eyes produced much more neutral grays. I still can't tell if the upper portion of the screen is pinker than the rest or if it's just my imagination or viewing angle. It's impossible to tell without some calibration hardware.

With all the reports of backlight bleeding I'm beginning to think that it's not worth trying to get one that doesn't have any; I might be trying forever. The display is so beautiful otherwise.
-Eli"


Notes on Buying/Checking Old vs New Spec AL Cinema Displays

(added 8/16/2006)
"Hi Mike, since Apple has bumped specifications of their Cinema Display and lowered price I decided to go and buy a new 23" as replacement of my current 20" ACD.

Seconds after seeing this screen working, I immediately noticed the "pink screen" problem. (I asked if he had checked this after a "1 hour warm-up" and he said no, although that may not change this.-Mike) Also I checked the serial with Coconut Identity card and it looked like the screen was manufactured in early June.

After talking with AppleCare regarding this issue, they do confirm me that this screen is from a previous generation because it was "late 2005" model and not mid 2006 one... incredible! They recommended to return the unit, so I did and asked for a refund as well.

I'm now waiting a few weeks to get my money back and see if Apple delivers what is advertised on his page instead selling old stock to their loyal customers. For the record, this screen was purchased at the Apple Store Online, Spain.

(I asked him if he had the S/N of the display just as a FYI, but not sure what S/N range the newer specs displays started at. -Mike)
2A62026XXXX (last 4 digits masked)
(he later wrote)
I have been informed new specification panels (Mid 2006) start from 2A6281 and up. Any model with lower serial number is within later 2005 specifications (like mine).
-George R. "

There's always a chance of getting some older stock from any dealer after a specs change like that and the usual "specifications subject to change without notice" disclaimer applies. Not everyone with an "old spec" Display mentioned the "pink" issue although for those with complaints, it was one of the most common ones. (Some tried recalibrations/custom colorsync profiles, etc.)


(added 8/16/2006)
" I received a 23" Cinema Display on June 26. (Put your hands together for my wife! Thanks, hon!) I use it with my TiBook 1 GHz, and it has no issues running the monitor at all.

So far, absolutely no problems with the 23. It's a beautiful monitor, and as far as I can tell, not a single dead or stuck pixel. My other experiences with LCDs are a 17" CD (circa Feb 2003) used daily on the same TiBook, a ViewSonic VG710s on a home-built PC (both used in the home), and several 20" Apple CDs and ViewSonics at work. My home ViewSonic has what appears to be a speck of dirt in the lower right corner behind the LCD panel, and stuck-on-red pixel in the 17" CD in the upper left. I don't remember the stuck pixel appearing until some time after I bought it, though I can't say when it appeared exactly.

Anyway, back to the 23in. It's unbelievably bright. I currently have the brightness set at about 40% of maximum, as the initial setting of 100% when I first set it up hurt my eyes when viewing subjects on a predominately white or light background.

The amount of real estate it provides is incredible. The power button on the monitor works as expected with 10.4.7, generating the expected Restart, Sleep, Cancel, Shutdown dialog when pressed, though on 10.4.6 it seemed to have no effect at times when pressed. When my TiBook is connected but off, the power button on the monitor will not fire up the computer, though. An MacBook Pro is on order and should arrive soon, so I will see if that changes things.
-Todd"


(added 8/16/2006)
"I purchased a new Apple 30" Cinema Display from an Apple Store in Dec, 2005, along with dual 2.7 PowerMac G5. I have the 3 year AppleCare program with it.

In screen saver mode, e.g., Apple's planets/galaxies ss module, I see random green noise in the dark areas. This did not happen when it was brand new, but showed up a few weeks later. I've not contacted Applecare about this since I don't experience this in normal day to day work. Besides, I would not want to send this to Apple, anyway, unless of course, something worse happens which would make it unusable.
-blguasto "


(added 8/16/2006)
"I purchased a 23" Cinema Display right before the prices began dropping -- I paid $1799 for this unit -- and it's been off of warranty for appx. 8 months. About 3 months ago, the screen started going pink. I contacted Apple, and of course, they would do nothing about this. I was told by an Apple repair center that if the case of my display was in pristine condition, a repair would be over $600. If there were scratches on the surface of the case, the repair would be substantially higher. Of course, it would be absurd to pay that much for a repair at this point -- thus making this display the most expensive lemon I have ever purchased.

i understand that apple just slaps its name onto the display, (actually I assumed they were made to Apple specs (case design, selected LCD panel mfrs, etc. by a display mfr - i.e. not just putting a name on some existing OEM display like some vendors do.-Mike) but there have been so many reports of "pink screen" infecting this display and little reaction from apple, it's been mind boggling that they've done nothing about this. i was the former department head of post-production and n.y.u. and now i'm moving to the ny film academy in a similar postion. trust me, i will never recommend an apple display again to a student or university.
-G. Cooper "


(added 8/15/2006)
I had to return the 23" I got for the Mac Pro today... It had the "pink" issue they had last year. (mentioned in some earlier reports here) I had to "show" a "Genius" what I meant and it was replaced.
Word was they upgraded the internals this May. The Build I returned was early June. The one replacement was late July, thank God. It is awesomely beautiful!
-William R."


(added 6/16/2006)
"I had an Apple 30" Cinema Display for about a month and I wanted to give you my feedback. I was afraid of dead pixels but I did not get any. However for about a week I started to see random red noise. This is the same thing that another user reported. It only shows in black areas an looks like red sparkles. This is not permanent, only when I boot the G5 from time to time. To get rid of it I have to reboot the computer or unplug the power supply (display).
This is not a major problem for me now, but this is kind of a pain in the butt since when you pay that much $ you can expect top quality. I have a G5 2 x 2GHz with an ATI Radeon X 800 XT card: the other user reported the same problem with a 6800. So the card is not to blame: besides I just can't see the problem when I do a screen capture.
I was wondering if other users had the same problem and if you could put me in touch with the user who reported that (6/23/2005). I took a 3-year Apple care plan, but I can't afford to send the display back...
Thanks, Steven"

If I can find that reader's mail I'll forward your mail to him. But I'd also contact Apple support to see what they say.


(added 5/30/2006)
""Thought my issues with my Apple Aluminum 20" Cinema Display might be of interest to you and your readers (maybe to add to your Aluminium Display page). It's long so feel free to edit.

The short story.
The magnetic stand that comes with the iSight was causing dark fuzzy lines to appear on my 20" Aluminium Display. (I have an early model iSight, it only had plastic stick-on/clamp on brackets in the box. I've not seen the magnetic stand he mentions but asked where he mounted it - as magnets won't stick to Aluminum.-Mike)
The iSight now ships (for at least the last year as mine is 12 months old) with a number of mounts in the box - 1 for laptops, one for sitting on the desk or sticking to the top of an iMac or eMac (it is angled so you turn it one way if on the desk or the other if on top of an I/eMac - it has a sticky bottom covered by a removable label) and a cylindrical mount with a magnet in the bottom.
I have been using the cylindrical mount on top of my 20" Aluminium display. It just sticks (via magnet) to the bezel on the top of the display - there must be some metal in there for them to attract to.

This problem occurred on 2 separate Displays. Removing the stand removes the problem (although it took me almost 18 months to make the connection and then only by chance - doh!)

Here is the long story.
About 18 months ago I purchased a 20" display. After about 2 months of use I started noticing 2 dark lines about an inch apart across most of the screen. The top line was about 2 inches below the top of the screen. The lines pretty well ran the whole width of the screen with about a 2 inch gap at the ends. The lines weren't solid as such but kind of fuzzy (so not a pixel problem). I assumed initially that I was seeing something from the one of the backlight tubes (like a 'dirty' tube or something).

The lines weren't really noticeable in general use as I always have windows open and they didn't seem to be really visible. But when using Expose to show my desktop there they were. I monkeyed with my desktop background and interestingly found that with some solid colours (red for example) they didn't seem as obvious (although still slightly visible). I thought that maybe it was a defective cable or something or even the video card but swapping both of these made no difference.

I rang Apple and they had me take my screen to my local Apple Service Centre. I explained the issue to them and left the screen with them. 2 days later they called to say the screen had been replaced with a new one. When I went to pick up the replacement, I asked what had been the problem. The tech said he didn't really know - he just took my word that there was a problem and, as I had called Apple and had a call ticket number from them he ordered a replacement. He speculated that the problem was either some masking tape behind the screen holding something in place that has either been attached wrongly(?) or a defect in the coating applied to the screen.

I didn't really care what the issue was as they had replaced the screen and I assumed that with a new screen I would now be OK.

Get home and connect the new screen and all looks good - I was happy.

After about 2-3 months of use with the new screen the lines start appearing again!

Once again I go through the process of calling Apple - they give me a number and I take the screen into the same Apple Service Centre. I explain the problem and tell then it's the 2nd time and they should run the screen for a while to confirm.

2 days later I get a call to say that they can't reproduce the problem. They had the screen connected up for 6 hours and it looks fine to them. I have no choice but to retrieve the screen as they won't repair/replace as they can't find a problem.

I get the screen home and when I hook it up the lines are there still (but a bit fainter).

At this point I am resolved to the fact I will have to live with this. As I said before, the lines aren't really noticeable while using the screen but I know they're there and they're really obvious when there is no windows open or if I expose my desktop (I have had people comment about them).

So I use my screen for about another 10 months until recently. Then, while reconfiguring my desk, I decide to move my iSight camera to a different position. The iSight previously was attached to the top of the Aluminium 20" display usuing the magnetic stand that came in the box with the iSight. I moved the iSight to sit on top of the speaker next to the display.

My fuzzy lines on the screen are now gone!

I can only assume that the magnet in the iSight stand was causing the black lines I was seeing (that magnet is a really strong sucker - it jumps onto metal from 1/2 an inch away). I'm guessing that the magnetic attraction it exudes was somehow affecting the top backlight tube and making some of the particles gather at the top and bottom of the tube (pure speculation this as I don't know where the tubes are actually located or what is in them). If not the tubes then some other component was definitely being affected by the magnet in the iSight stand.

I now have a pristine 20" Aluminium Display and the iSight won't be going back on top of the display.

Interestingly enough, I have seen pictures of iSight's perched on top of Aluminium Displays from Apple websites in the past - I wonder if there are other people out there who might have seen this and not connected the iSight stand to the problem (like I did) as a result.
Regards, Ralph P. "

I could understand image problems (from a magnet) with a CRT display but it's an LCD Display.
Update - two other Cinema Display owners wrote they've seen no problems with the magnetic mount.

(added 5/30/2006)
"I've used my iSight magnet on both 20 and 23 AL displays with no problems. After reading the other readers comments, I played with mine a bit more, but I cannot reproduce what he is seeing.
-David"

(added 5/30/2006)
"I've got two setups with 23" AL Cinema Displays with iSight cameras mounted on the top with the magnetic mount and have no problems with either. I'm not sure how a magnet could affect an LCD display anyway - there isn't anything to be affected by one in an LCD display.
-Lew K. "

Doesn't make sense to me either (with an LCD Display, not a CRT)
BTW - a reader later wrote that although the iSight magnetic mount had no effects, a more powerful magnet did:

" Just sending a quick comment about the magnet. I am wondering if it is possible that maybe the magnet that was sent with that iSight is maybe too powerful? I have been using the magnetic iSight on my 20 and have tried in various spots to replicate the symptoms. But sufficely to say, I have not.
however I do have a few slightly more powerful magnets for working on my car (dropping screws in tight places) and when I barely move them towards the display I do get some rather dark lines appearing on the screen. I think its possible he just got a mount with a much too powerful magnet.
~Stephen "

I don't know why one mount would be different than another, but I asked him how large/powerful the magnet was.


(added 4/3/2006 - updated twice)
"I was doing a search online to try to find answers to problems I've had with my Apple Cinema Display. I wanted to find out if you have any info about an apparent hardware flaw with Cinema Displays actually being caused by something software related. I searched your forum and didn't see any mention of this (if I missed it, please direct me to it).

Here's my quick story: I was 100% positive that my 20" Cinema Display was flawed -- it had a soft subtle vertical band that was slightly darker and yellowish. If t divided the monitor into 4 even sections from left to right, this flawed area would be section 2 (attached graphics shows the problem area with exaggerated discoloration). I felt positive it was a hardware problem with my monitor.

image sample

Then, after spending a long time doing different tests, I discovered that the problem appears to be software related! It makes zero sense to me, but this is what I've found. When I boot my dual G5 (2.7MHz) from a volume with a newly installed version of Tiger, the flaw is gone! I have switched back and fourth between my regular startup volume and startup volume with the fresh system software, and the problem is definitely related to the startup volume. I'm still trying to figure out EXACTLY what is causing the problem, if it's a corrupt OS or something else (maybe 3rd party start-up software, calibration software?).

Has anyone reported this non-hardware explanation? Has anyone discovered what the exact software culprit is? I would bet there are tons of people who, like me, feel positive their monitors are flawed, yet the true problem is something else... Thanks if you have any answers, and also thanks for being such an amazing resource!
-Rob"

I asked Rob if he had tried running the "Profile first Aid" option in the Apple ColorSync utility. (It has helped at times with some problems with display as well as printer profiles) The ColorSync utility is in the Applications/Utilities folder of OS X. (The March 21st news had a post on Colorsync Profile First Aid which I was not aware of before.) If that does not help I'd check for any 3rd party addons (including the login/startup items) and trash the Display Prefs.
Update - he later wrote:

" Wow, I learned something. The monitor profile created by my GretagMacbeth Eye-One Match 3 calibrator is causing the problem! Profile First Aid didn't detect a problem with the profile, but all I have to do is switch to a different color profile to see the flaw disappear.
I guess it's time to contact GretagMacbeth. THANK YOU!
(I said it might be worth redoing the calibration again to see if the problem repeats and he later wrote:)
actually, after some more testing, i'm not sure the profile is the problem. perhaps the profile has a steeper gamma that simply accentuates the flaw... and perhaps the problem is just much more subtle when viewed on the fresh boot volume that doesn't have the Eye- One profile. If it wasn't such a subtle flaw, it would be a lot easier to figure out.
the problem has definitely persisted through multiple calibrations...
i wish i had the time to focus on this all day with my newfound knowledge (thanks to you) to possibly come to a conclusion, but alas, i need to work too...
-Rob "


(added 1/24/2006)
"I've owned a 20" AL Cinema Display for about six months. So far, it's perfect, with only one odd flaw: whenever I check my bank account online, some pixel anomaly around the ending balance makes the plus sign look like a minus.
-Dave "


(added 1/24/2006)
"I've had experiences with two Apple Cinema displays so far.
The 20" came without any stuck pixels, looks good, no problem. Brightness is cranked down to a minimum and it is still plenty usable in a standard bright-lit environment.

The 23" I bought (care of Apple's Web Store) was another story. Yes, the 23" is a gorgeous display. Beautiful colour, sits nicely on the desk etc. But when the room is dark (as it is when doing photo editing) I saw 3 or 4 brightly lit green sub pixels. (There are also several LCD test apps that will cycle through several solid color backgrounds (Black, white, red, etc..) which make spotting these easier. Here's a free one called LCD Test-Mike)
So I turned off all the lights and carefully looked at the display.
Final total: 20 stuck sub pixels. 10 Green, 5 Red, 5 Blue. To be perfectly fair, the vast majority of the pixels were very hard to see (very tiny and faintly lit sub pixels... Green is the easiest to see, and red is much more difficult to see, with blue the hardest to see) but in a dark room environment once you knew where to look for them it was obvious enough.

As an FYI: the Apple standard for display replacement of a 23" is 15 stuck sub-pixels. I'm told that my replacement display is on its way and so I'm looking forward to seeing what the new display looks like.
-DB "


(added 1/23/2006 - updated 1/24/2006)
"I just bought the Apple 23 inch aluminum display (01/20/06). I returned a first one to CompUSA due to dead pixels on the left portion of the screen. The replacement was picked up from another CompUSA store. The store claimed that they just received the unit 3 days ago from Apple. After working with the second monitor, I found 3 very small stuck pixels (light on black screen) on left portion of screen.

I will try running the so called stuck pixel video (? I'd heard of 'massaging' stuck pixels in the past but not this.-Mike) over-night to see if it fixes it. I have also observed that the right top edge of the screen is light (possibly due to backlight placement). (one theory a reader had in the past (here/below) was that some displays may have uneven pressure on the panel around the border.-Mike) The light top side is only observed on a dark screen with lights off.

The monitor is nice, but for as much Apple charges for the monitor it should be perfect. If I can't fix the stuck pixel (3 correct?), I will return the monitor for yet another replacement. (hopefully the store will swap it out for this as Apple's policy last I heard was sort of vague on how many qualify for a swap.-Mike)

Apple really needs to fix their quality inspection on these monitor.
(He later sent an update on his 3rd display)

I picked up a new one (received from Apple 01/17/06) at CompUSA today. The store told me this was the last time I could swap (but it has only been 2 days), then I would have to deal with Apple. The new display (3rd) looks good with the exception of 3 very small stuck (bright) pixels. One is actually almost in the same place as what I saw on the second display. Hopefully, the 4 randomly placed tiny pixels come back to life after some use. I think I could live with this, but I am still thinking " is this the best it gets?...". I certainly wonder if the 30 inch has this many problems, and if the quality control is better.

One good merit of this 3rd replacement monitor is that the lighting is much more uniform under a dark screen. -Jeffrey M. "

I think in general stuck pixels are more rare with LCD displays in the last few years, but as they say - YMMV.


(added 8/17/2005)
" I just purchased a 30 inch Cinema display and I have noticed, like so many others, the flickering pixels. I was wondering if anyone has been successful in returning theirs to Apple and getting a non- defective one?

I don't want to send mine back right away since it has zero dead or stuck pixels, and the only problem I have is this anomaly. Do you know of any fix for this? I have tried resetting PRAM, disconnecting my second display, etc....
Also, I have noticed that power cycling the monitor temporarily fixes the problem.
I am on a dual 2.5 GHz PowerMac G5 with 1 GB RAM and a X800XT Graphics Card. - Ian "


(added 8/17/2005)
" Earlier this summer my 17" Studio Display that came with my G4 400 MHz Tower started sparking and shorting. It was time to replace it. So I got a 20" AL Cinema Display. So far, the only problems I have had were with verifying video card compatibility on Apple's website. If you look up the G4 "Sawtooth" on Apple's site and look at the compatible displays, Apple says that the 20" Cinema display is compatible with the stock AGP graphics card. If you look at the specs for the monitor, you'll see that the old AGP card isn't up to the specs the new Cinema Display demands. I found this out the hard wary. I fixed it easily enough by getting a PCI Radeon 9200 graphics card and taking the old AGP card out. But I wish I could have known what I was in for before I bought anything.

Not a complaint against the monitor. The monitor is beautiful. But Apple needs to a) clean up their old web pages, b) stop naming new products the same thing as old products unless they're 100% compatible.
Doc C. "


(added 8/17/2005)
" Hi Mike
I've had my 20" Al display now for about 7 weeks, nil drama's yet, great screen. I had a Viewsonic 17" CRT for ages and was always envious of my wife's 15" TiPB screen, now, while I love to play with the PB I can't wait to get back to my 20" display.
No dead pixels. I was really pleased to receive with the new display the ADC to DVI adaptor for my Radeon 9800 Pro ME 128mb card. I don't know if is standard, but I've read reports of people having to shell out for the ADC adapter from apple to drive the display.
many thanks for this site
Michael L. "

I assume he had an OEM (G5) 9800 card and was already using the DVI port for another display, otherwise you wouldn't need an ADC->DVI adapter for using the DVI Alum display. (The OEM 9800 Pro card had ADC + DVI ports, the retail 9800 Pro has DVI + VGA ports. The video topics page, graphics card section has an older article from 2003 on Retail 9800 Pro vs OEM/BTO 9800 Pro cards.)


(added 8/17/2005)
" Earlier in the summer I purchased one of the new Dual 2.0GHz (G5) machines along with a 20" aluminum monitor. My previous monitor was a 15" Apple Studio LCD - while we loved it, it suffered from a lot of the problems common to early-gen LCD machines (terrible viewing angle, uneven backlighting, etc.).
The new monitor is, in a word, utterly gorgeous. Not a single bad pixel, uniform brightness and color, and crispness and contrast unlike anything I've seen before. The viewing angle is incredible - the picture is flawless viewed from almost any angle, anywhere in the room!
As the earlier poster mentioned, I do miss the one-touch sleep of the earlier LCD models (with power button on the front) but it's a minor thing to get used to. Playing World of Warcraft on this baby is a dream come true. HIGHLY recommended. Best monitor I've ever owned.
Thanks and love the site! -Jason"


(added 8/17/2005)
" Just wanted to drop a positive note about my 20" AL display. I am 100% happy with it. No dead pixels! Its on the brighter side, but reducing the brightness almost as far down as it will go works well. Colors and back-lighting is very even. USB and FW ports work perfectly. No ghosting in games or fast movements.
While the 20" looks small at the Apple Store compared to its big brothers, the real estate is quite roomy and display looks big enough sitting at home on my desk.
- Doug "


(added 8/17/2005)
" Just a quick opinion on the Cinema Displays.
I have 3 ACD's (20") 2 Aluminum at work on my Dual G5 2.7GHz, and one plastic at home on my Dual G4 1.25

All three of my ACD's are perfect. I have no complaints and would encourage others to purchase the 20" models over any other displays on the market. I have spent hours looking at 20 - 22 - 23 - 24 - 30 inch apple displays over the years, and I can tell you that nothing comes close to the ACD 20" when it comes to colour quality.

The aluminum is definitely a little brighter than the plastic, but both have very rich colour definition. I know some people have received bad units, but so far I am 3 for 3 with my Apple display purchases.

One last thing, if you are on the fence about buying a 30", I would highly recommend two 20" instead.
Regards, Lorne S. "


(added 8/12/2005)
" Regarding the 20" AL Cinema Display - not a single problem, whatsoever. I bought it to change a 17" IO-Data Monitor. It wasn't a bad monitor, actually, it was quite good.
I run a small conversation school at my house (I live in Japan), and everybody notices the change immediately - the monitor is not only bigger, but simply looks better, and the colors are very vivid. Several people expressed their envy - Apple products look so cool and are of great quality, why can't Windows items be like them? Thanks to my 2 GHz dual G5 and now the display, people are very aware of the Apple items, and several are considering their Apple purchases.
-Zbigniew A.
Japan "


(added 8/12/2005)
" i have a 20 in. Apple Cinema display. It is gorgeous especially right next to a 17 in Studio display now running Windows. It is brighter and crisper. Videos and games are outstanding.
My only complaint is every-time I re boot I have to re-plug in the display's usb port to get the usb ports off the back of the display to work. But this could be the G5's problem and not the display's.
Also I sure wish Apple would have left the power button for the computer on the display like the old studio displays.
-Steve
Okinawa "


(added 8/10/2005)
" Hi Mike, I bought a 20" cinema display as a replacement for an aging Trinitron monitor about three month ago. It has no bad pixels and the backlighting/color consistency is fine. Maybe I was just lucky with this one, but this is definitely a really good display (better than other 20" S-IPS in this price range, at least here in Germany).
Sven
P.S.: More than a month after buying this monitor, Dell lowered its price on their 20" widescreen in Germany (it is using the same panel but a different backlight). Even though the Dell is now cheaper, I cannot say that I regret my purchase :-) "

I saw one of those dell discount coupon codes a week or so ago that made the 20in model under $400 I think (around $350 or so IIRC). I don't know how they sell them so cheap (I guess they count on most paying the list price.) Knock on wood so far I'm happy with the 24in model (at about $850 delivered after a big discount coupon code) but the first one had a PS failure after less than 1hr of use (and I'd rather take a beating that go through that automated support phone system again...) A reader that's using a 20in Dell LCD recently wrote he's pretty happy with it:

" Mike
I appreciate all the work that it takes to maintain the site and the databases of user reports. Thanks for the great resource.
I use a two display set-up for my work in FCP and graphics. I recently decided to replace my really aged RasterOps 21"CRT. I researched the LCD market and after seeing the prices and reading this review http://anandtech.com/displays/showdoc.aspx?i=2400
I settled on a Dell 2005FPW. Purchased in mid June. So far I am pleased with it. I am not a Dell fan. The price delivered with a 3 three year warranty was $479.73. Tax and shipping included. I just could not see any reason to pay 699.00 for the Apple unit. Black tape over the Dell logo works well

That said I have just installed Tiger and have included a shot of the system profiler for display. As you can see core image is not supported. (the ASP info showed he has a 9000 Pro/RV250, which doesn't have core image/video support in Tiger. R300's (9600 and up models) and up do.-Mike) I have not tried the rotation ability. Core image is also not supported with the secondary CRT either.
The price of this unit when all the special discounting is applied is difficult to beat.
Regards, Lynn C. "


(added 8/9/2005)
"Just to give a slightly positive note on the CD 23", I bought one in May and have been extremely happy with it. I did have a slight pink cast on mine but using the expert controls during the display calibration completely removed it.
-Matt H. "


(added 8/5/2005)
"Here is a report on a 20" Alum. Display
I got my display as a replacement for a 17" ADC legacy display that I had gotten with my 1.6g5. The issue was that there was an incredible intermittent tendency for the display to turn on and off. Well after a few months with the 20", I have no complaints. The color rendering is absolutely unmatched by any other display I have seen. The contrast is quite fair, only issue is, that its so very bright. I have it at the lowest setting, and its still somewhat bright for my tastes (but my room also doesn't have a window) I don't know if this will change when I move to a room with a window, but I expect it to, and then I also expect the brightness to be quite appreciated. Still, I doubt I will ever need to bring it all the way up.

All in all its the best display series I have had the luck to look at and own. The 20" which I have has brought me only enjoyment, I am so happy apple went to DVI, and am waiting for the PS3 so I can finally unify my entertainment needs centering them around my G5.
-Paul "


(added 8/5/2005)
"I detail the problems I had with this monitor --which is notorious for its pink cast-- on my weblog http://www.bruceeisner.com/new_culture/2005/08/my_apple_is_a_l.html
-Bruce E. "

Although not everyone had problems with an Alum Cinema display more than few have (see reports below). I couldn't justify the cost of an Apple 23in display right now but picked up a Dell 24in LCD (1920x1200, with DVI, VGA, Component, etc. inputs) model for about $850 delivered (after discount) since several readers had raved on it and it's gotten generally good reviews. Unfortunately the first one had the internal power supply go south after the first use (not confidence inspiring) but the replacement (knock on wood) has been OK for a week or so now. Neither had any bad pixels. It was overly bright (even w/brightness set very low on the display) and a bit washed out until I created a calibration for it (and changed gamma to 1.8, it was at 2.2 IIRC). That made a big difference. No firewire ports like the Apple display but the USB 2.0 hub and card slots are a nice feature. Although I've not used it - the Picture in Picture/Picture by Picture feature is a nice plus. (It can be pivoted also.) Although I'm leery on the QC after the first one, I think it has a 3yr warranty (per the reviews - but I can't find any info on that anywere on the invoice or dells site right now). Although that name repels many (I may black it out as some readers have), so far for the money it seems like an amazing bargain. I sold my original Apple 22in (DVI) cinema display for nearly enough to pay for the 24in.


The report below was also posted on the 6800 card reports page but my feeling is it's not related to the graphics card so posting it here also.

(added 6/23/2005)
"I have a dual 2.5 GHZ G5 with the new 23" "metal" apple display with DVI connectors. I also have the 6800 card.
And I've had a lot of trouble. More so than any other computer/display combination I've ever owned.

About three months ago, while playing World of Warcraft, my display simply powered off. After much gnashing of teeth, I figured out it was the power brick. It must have died. I went to a local CompUSA and one of the folks there let me try swapping bricks on their demo model. Plug my brick in to their display, their display goes dead. Put their brick back it was fine. OK, great. Turns out that (a) while CompUSA is an authorized service provider they do not have any replacement power bricks. And (b) the power brick is NOT a "user serviceable" part according to Apple, so they can't just order a new one and have it shipped to me. Instead I *MUST* bring in my entire display to CompUSA and they'll take care of ordering a new power brick and testing it out.
Needless to say I found that frustrating.

OK, two weeks later (yeah, two weeks) I have my display and new power brick. Works great. For about a month.
Then I started getting a kind of "red dot", or a red haze in areas where the screen was black. (I can provide a picture I took of it if you like...). Didn't matter what app -- even happened at boot time. Resolution, and depth, nothing changed this. It was as if there was some kind of electrical problem or something. (does a color calibration help?-Mike)

Called AppleCare back. Since this was my second problem with this display, they wanted the whole display and power brick. So, I waited for them to send me a box, and then sent it off to them.
Two more weeks later I got it back. Looks like a new LCD was installed (had one dead pixel which is no longer there). Works great, WoW is wonderful again.
And then the red haze came back about two weeks ago. sigh.

I have no idea what is causing this. I don't think it's the 6800 -- when I plug a CRT into it, it's fine. But then again the CRT isn't a digital connection and the Apple display is. I REALLY don't want to send me computer to Apple for 2-3 weeks. But it looks like I'm calling AppleCare for the third time in three months on this display. I personally think it's some kind of electrical problem in the display or power brick. The red haze comes and goes and sometimes flickers (and it mainly appears where there is "black" on the screen), but it could be some kind of problem with the card itself. I hope not.

btw... these problems occur on 10.3.x and 10.4. Even on completely fresh installs and booting of CDs. The red haze problem even comes up before the machine has booted into the OS. It's NOT a driver problem or any kind of software problem. It's purely hardware. I just don't know if it's the mac, the 6800, the display or the display's power brick.
-Bryan
(he later wrote)
I personally think it's some kind of electrical problem. It's not a color tint issue -- it's a "noise" issue where the noise changes. The best example I can give is static watching "old school" tv via an "rabbit ears". The "red haze" or noise comes and goes and moves around. It kinda sparkles.
We'll see what AppleCare says this time :( "

I'm with you I'd doubt it's related to the card but to verify that can you try the display with another system/graphics card (to rule out the 6800 card). One 6800 owner with an adapted ADC display recently said he saw less noise by swapping to a different DVI port on the card.
If the noise/display issues are due to the graphics card (corrupted display data) a screenshot from the OS should show it. If it's noise from the display (or conducting on cables, etc.) then a screenshot wouldn't show it. (Isolating out the card.) BTW - After about a year of intermittent use my Sony FW900 (24in CRT) started showing a purplish/pinkish tint at the boot screen (instead of pure gray). It does that with every graphics card/system I have (even PCs) although in the OS it's not apparent really (at least to my non-pro eyes). I've done calibrations, monitor adjustments (on the monitor), etc. and nothing seems to help - but again it's primarily apparent on reboots where the screen should be pure gray.


(added 4/22/2005)
"I've had a 23" aluminum cinema since mid-March. No dead pixels, no pink band. Colors in the corners are a bit darker than elsewhere, but given the nature of my work this is hardly a critical issue for me. The only problem I've had is that once a USB port temporarily ceased functioning.

When I bought this I was a bit scared because these monitors have had such bad press. Maybe I'd be more critical if I were a graphics pro, but for my purposes this monitor is a winner.

By the way, whether it's true or not I've read that the Sony 23" cinema is a repackaging of essentially the same monitor. The street price seems a trifle lower.
Dana S. "


(added 4/22/2005)
"Mike, I don't have the energy to take this through every trouble shooting step but the short version is:

I purchased three 23" Aluminum Cinema Displays in September 2004, one of them has a very similar issue to Andy's description. (see 4/20/2005 report from Andy below)

I have switched power bricks with my other displays and I've tried it on three different machines (G4 and G5 all 10.3.x). It was sent to Apple in the Fall and returned with their saying they cannot duplicate the issue.

On my display, it is very intermittent and has not progressively gotten worse, it most often doesn't come on from a cold start. Unplugging the brick from the AC and then restarting almost always brings it back. Less often is the middle of use just goes blank, again unplug brick and restart. It has not gotten to the point that I can recreate it at will. It seems to happen about every week or two. We've just been dealing with it. So I'm thrilled to hear I'm not alone with this problem. I have an open case at Apple but I've told them I don't want to send it in again unless they intend to do something other than tell me it cannot be recreated there. Mike, you provide an extremely useful site, again thank you.
Best, Paul "

Anyone else have this problem? (Andy's was the first report I recall on it so I assumed it was not a very common problem.)


(added 4/20/2005)
"I purchased two 23" Aluminum Cinema Displays in November 2004. Near the end of December one of them spontaneously shut off. The power button wouldn't turn it back on. The only thing that would bring it back on would be to unplug the display from the computer, unplug power from the power brick then plug everything back in. Then in January this started happening every couple of days, then every day.

I sent it in to the local Apple tech and he sent it in to Apple. It came back a couple of days later saying that nothing was wrong with it, but with a new power brick (I didn't send in the old one). I thought this fixed it as it went two weeks without shutting off. When it started again I went though everything. I switched computers, power bricks, video cards. Everything. The problem followed the display no matter what.

I managed to get the local Apple tech in for him to witness the problem and he concluded that it was the main board. Back it went to Apple. This was March 11th when it was sent off and Apple still has it. I have been calling weekly and have been told that the inverter board is bad and they are waiting for a new one and it should take "a couple of days". This has been going on for almost six weeks. They are refusing to replace the display as they claim that it is fixable under warranty. Meanwhile I've dropped $1800 so the display can sit on a bench in California. This is very frustrating and I'd like to put a warning out there for other people who may have this problem.
-Andy "

I've had more than a few reports here on color consistency problems (although not everyone did) but this is the first report (to date) I remember on this sort of problem. I know that doesn't help but I don't think this is a very common issue (just bad luck). (Note - another owner replied to this post above.)


Powerbook G4/17in (dual link DVI model) w/30in Display: (in reply to a reader request for feedback below)

(added 3/30/2005)
"I have been running a 17" PB and 30" for well over a month now and the fan only comes on under very heavy CPU usage. Over all I have heard the fan a lot less on the 17" 1.67ghz than on my "old" 17" 1.5ghz. (the main question in my mind was if the higher load on the video chip would cause the fan(s) to run more frequently-Mike)

I don't notice any "CPU drag" with the 30" hooked up either, although I can't really say that I have used the laptop without the 30" much. (The 30" is very addicting)

I have had a slight problem with DVI noise on the 30" Cinema, random pixels with random colors appearing at random times. After some searching, it is the exact same problem people have when using DVI extension cables. Activating Expose' a few times clears it up.
-Lee M. "

Here's another PB G4 17in/30in Display user's comments:

(added 3/30/2005) "I use the 30in Display at my office with the 17in Powerbook. At home, I use the 17in Powerbook with no external display. I notice no difference in the amount the fan runs. There is also not a noticeable performance difference.
The temperature of the PB is affected by the fact that I use a product called LapGenie, an aluminum stand on which the PB rests. When I go to meetings I do not use that and my impression is that the PB gets hotter, but I still don't notice much fan noise. It is only when burning DVDs on the built-in burner that I think I really get extra fan noise, although that could be mixed with the optical drive noise.
-Michael M.
(I asked if he had seen any DVI noise/display artifacts that Lee mentioned-Mike)
I have not experienced any DVI noise on the 30" Cinema Display. I use it for at least a few hours every day, sometimes as many as 12 hours per day and have not observed this after about a month. "

Another PB G4 17in/30in Display owner wrote:

(added 3/30/2005)
"I'm using the 30" Cinema Display and Powerbook 17" 1.67GHz with no problems.
It's an awesome experience every time I boot up. Lot's of real estate and I'm spoiled.
-Robert N. "

I also asked Robert if he'd seen any of the DVI noise/display artifacts.


(added 3/30/2005)
"I purchased an Apple 23" ACD in December along with a 2.5 G5 and NVIDIA 6800 GT. I do see a bit of uneven backlighting but no pink issue, sleep problems, ghosting or other problems. The display has been in use 40 hours a week. I do graphic design and couldn't be happier with this display.
Mike B. "


A 30in Display owner sent a follow-up to his previous post on slow refresh:

(added 3/29/2005)
"With my setup when I run the "Flurry" screensaver with the default settings, I can see a horizontal line where the drawing begins. This horizontal line scrolls up like the v-hold on an old TV. It is not an actual line, but a visible area where the current frame and the next frame don't line up exactly.
The very same problem occured with this display and the 9800XT my G5 came with. (using 30in Cinema Display) Next time I'm at the apple store I'll check to see if it happens with the 6800 Ultra.
-Jorell H. "

I wrote one of the other 30in display users (Barney who reported on his 30in display below) to ask if he'd also seen this and he replied:

" I just tried it (Flurry screensaver test above) and I see exactly what he's talking about. He's described it perfectly.
-Barney "

PC Mag's review of the 30in mentioned smearing on moving images.


Anyone using a 30in Display w/new PowerBook G4?

(added 3/29/2005)
"Has anyone tried to use the new 15/17" PowerBooks ( has Dual Link DVI) with the 30" Cinema Display on a continuous basis? I'm worried about excessive heat/fan noise/CPU drag that might be likely if the PB is driving that monitor. Anyreports? Thanks.
-George "

If any readers are using this setup let me know if you've noticed the fan(s) running more frequently. (GPU stress/heat can increase fan speed.) See above for the first report on this setup.


(added 3/28/2005)
"This report will sound rather boring, but maybe it can at least help with your statistics.

My 30" Cinema Display is performing flawlessly. Absolutely zero stuck pixels in R G or B, which kind of surprised me, actually. Not being a gamer, I haven't been able to really test refresh-ness. (a past report complained of slow refresh) Color, brightness, and off-angle viewing are all excellent. Actually, off-angle viewing is probably the best I've seen in any LCD.

I've been doing graphics for over 15 years now, and every time I get a bigger monitor it always takes a little getting used to, but this one *really* takes some getting used to. I used to run a pair of 20" Mitsubishi 900U's, but this, obviously, blows them away in total number of pixels in either axis. I find myself giggling at my desk about 5 times a day over something small and silly, like how TALL my browser windows are, or how I can work on that 3-megapixel pic at 100%.
-Barney "


(added 3/28/2005)
"mike,
i wrote you a while back with the following:

"re: 20inch alum cinema display
mike,
saw your posts regarding the monitors. i bought one this summer and recently noticed a single pixel column on the left side of my monitor has gone yellow. it is barely noticeable most of the time, but it is definitely there. i haven't addressed it with the apple store yet, but i am planning on it..."

just wanted to give you some follow-up: i took it to the apple store, they took one look at it and sent it for repair under warranty, no questions asked. i think they replaced the entire lcd panel. looks great again, no color problems whatsoever.
cheers, Chris "


(added 3/25/2005)
"I have a 30" Cinema HD Display with a Radeon X800. I have one stuck (red) pixel near the top center. It is so small it is not even noticable.
My only complaint which may apply to all LCDs is the refresh rate is not as high as I would like. Whenever I display something full screen with a high FPS, the refresh breaks/begins in the middle of the screen so you can sometimes see it drawing.
-Jorell H. "


(added 3/25/2005)
"I am completely happy with my display and have had zero issues with it. I thought the Apple CRT I was using was decent until I got the 20" Cinema set up next to it.

I have absolutely no dead pixels.

I do have one interesting thing to mention but it's not really a problem with the monitor. It's just something that might not be obvious to someone setting up the monitor.

It began when I discovered that some of the USB devices I owned would not work in the new G5 tower if they were plugged into my hub or into the monitor. For some reason, they would would with the Apple keyboard, but I am not using the Apple keyboard since I have a wireless keyboard. Since I couldn't get some USB devices to work plugged into the monitor, I thought I would reclaim one of the ports on the back by not plugging in the monitor's USB, thinking that it was only a hub that I didn't need nearly as much as I needed connections to work with fussy USB devices. Shortly afterwards, I noticed that while the brightness buttons on the monitor still worked, on-screen display of how the setting was changing no longer displayed. The options tab also disappears from the display preferences.

The USB connection is obviously not just a hub but a device that passes some display information to the computer.
-Tom A. "


(added 3/23/2005)
"Hi Mike,
Just thought people might like to hear my little (positive) adventure with Apple Cinema Displays. Last Wednesday (March 16th, 2005) I ordered a 20" Display from the UK Apple Store, and received it just under 26 hours later (I was impressed!). It appeared pretty much perfect at first, save for a single pixel stuck on a dull red about three inches from the top on the right side - barely noticable.

However, after a couple of days use I noticed that the left quarter of the screen seemed to have slightly leached-out colours - especially noticable was the 'fading out' effect of the blue bars in iTunes and the coloured window control buttons. It was worst in the very top left corner (no magenta colour-cast or yellowing edges though), so I decided to give Apple tech support a call on Saturday. The tech guy (a very happy Geordie fella) advised that as it had only been 2 days he considered it DOA, and that I should call the Apple Store direct to have them swap it out.

After a little fuss getting a fault report added to the order (that the woman dealt with brilliantly), she authorised a swap out and I received the dispatch notice an hour and a half later. The new screen arrived today (22/03/05), and I was able to do a side-by-side comparison as the old one doesn't leave until tomorrow. The colour balance on the replacement is much improved over the original, with no leaching apparent, and also the bonus of no stuck or dead pixels. There is also no colour cast (before calibration) or yellowing edges. Overall I am very, very impressed with the quality - and the highly responsive customer care I received from Apple. Thanks for a great site - always the place to check before buying new kit!
Cheers, Andy
different pixel - design for web & print
www.dfpx.co.uk"


(added 3/23/2005 from 3/12 mail)
"New 23" arrived 2005.03.11.
No color patches.
One stuck on red pixel near center (PiXel Check).
John C.
(he later wrote)
Also, new HP L2331 23" display arrived 2005.03.21. Pixel perfect (with PiXel Check). No discoloration. Takes digital and analog inputs. Can be used as HDTV monitor. Tilts, telescopes, swivels. Nice design.
$1406 at 3 - no tax or shipping. (Last check had gone UP to $1478) I see no reason to get the Apple over the HP, and several advantages to the HP...
John "

The $1150 or so Dell 24in LCD also has gotten praise and good reviews. (I'm no fan of Dell but if I were in the market for a large LCD, I'd give that one serious consideration.)


Settings tip for Pink Color Issue: I don't own an AL Cinema display to try this but a reader sent a tip that he said helped with the pink/color consistency issue some owners have reported:

" First go to the System (preferences) panel and open "Universal Access"

If the slider of "enhance contrast" is above "normal" - switch it back. After that too much pink/magenta on the display should be gone. Can't say that for all other problems mentioned, but it worked for me on several machines.
regards,
Heiko "

He sent PDF screenshots of the panel/settings but I didn't convert them for posting. If anyone with the problem checks this setting and finds it helps, let me know.


(added 2/22/2005)
"over a month's time, my cinema display has developed serious color problems similar to what has been described by other users. i am worried that sending this back to apple would simply result in a long repair time and and another defective display. like the other users i feel like i wasted a lot of money, and i've lost much faith in apple's ability or responsibility to manufacture products that justify the premium price tag.
first five digits of the serial: RM5030
-Adam H.
(I asked for more details-Mike)
it has: pinkish hue, and color inconsistency. i have blue patches just left of the center, a pink cast all around, and yellow/brown around the sides and bottom. no amount of calibration can cure this. oh, and the display is brightest in a vertical band in the center and tapers off towards the sides. also there is less contrast at the sides."

Not everyone reported a problem (color consistency, tint or backlighting uniformity) with their display, but I know that's little consolation to those that did.


(added 1/6/2005)
"Hello Mike,
We bought two 23" HD's end of November from Helsinki and already switched one of them due to two broken pixels and vertical gray hue (2cm ghost line) on the left side of the screen. The shade became visible over one week of time and was very visible especially on black. I am working with a well known international photographer whose been into digital imaging since photo labs, CRT tubes and Apple ADC's - we were really upset to see this happening! We got one switched but both of them seem still very scattered with their overall tonality.

The gray scales don't match the professional scale, especially in the black end, black without stripes doesn't work! Calibration doesn't help the pink/yellow glow - while both screens have thin 2-3mm dark grey vertical lines all over the display area which is really annoying with gradients! Previous ADC screens had better quality!? What is happening with these Apple LCD's?

We were visiting Zurich over the christmas and made some comparison over Apple and other screens in two stores (Mediamarkt and local Apple store). Shop displays did not have this problem and the staff told me screens were non calibrated out of the box products.
Our 17" PowerBook laptops have better scale of tones than 23" HD's - how can it be possible?
-Petri S. "

I don't know why some have gotten displays they say are fine (even pro graphics people) and others noted problems like color consistency. As I mentioned before (older post below) one reader had a theory the color issue may be due to the bezel/frame.


(added 1/5/2005)
" Hey Mike, I just wanted to report that we just set up a 30 G5 lab with new 20" cinemas, and all of them are perfect. I went around and tried a solid white screen on them and couldn't see any problems. Hopefully Apple finally cleared up the issues with these displays.
-Dogcow "moof!"


(added 1/4/2005)
" Hello Mike.
I'm a 20 year graphic artist doing magazine work and I have a 1 year old 23" ADC (previous molded plastic model) and a brand new 30" both hooked up to a 6800 GT using Dr. Bott's DVIaitor.

I quality of the 30" next to the previous 23" is plain to see. The 30" has brighter cleaner whites (and color) than the 23" which has a sort of tinted old white sock look to it. (it's not the lights either)

The 30" is a really nice display and if artists were happy with the old 23" ers, they will really be happy with the much improved 30"ers.

Dozens of PC folks from all trades that have seen my 30" Display all say it's the best they have ever seen.

PC Magazine is full of it.
-Sailfish"

I was surprised at their review comments (past link posted below). The 30in I saw in person looked great to my eyes and would be on my desk now if I could afford one. (BTW - today apple cut prices on the Cinema displays - the 20in now $999.00, the 23in is $1,799.00 and the 30in is $2,999.00.)


(added 1/4/2005 from Jan. 2nd mail)
" To whom it may concern...
Yes, I too have noticed a problem with my ACD HD23. I have done the 3 tests suggested at www.dreamlight.com/insights/bugs/hd23.html
My results were exactly as the problems described there. And yes, they have been getting more pronounced over time. I have been using this display since slightly before Thanksgiving 2004.
This is an Aluminum Apple Cinema Display HD 23"
Model number is A1082
Serial number is 2A4340ZEPRL
Please keep me informed, if you can, of any action required on my part regarding this issue.
Thank you, Michael S."


(added 12/23/2004)
" Hi Mike,
Just wanted to chime in with some background info on the "ghosting" problem reported by several users of the aluminum casing Cinema Displays. We have a previous generation (plastic framed) 23" Cinema Display that exhibited the ghosting problem on both a MDD G4 DP 1.42 and G5 DP 1.8. We contacted Apple, shipped it back to them and they took care of the problem. Anyway, this problem existed with the previous generation of displays as well. Hopefully this adds another data point to the discussion.

We are currently holding off purchase on several 23" Cinema Displays (Aluminum) until Apple either responds to this issue publicly or user reports start indicating the problem has been resolved.
Longtime reader of the site, keep up the great work! You are an invaluable resource to the Mac community.
Ted S.
MCM Design Studio, LLC.
http://www.mcmds.com/
(So far only 3 AL display owners mentioned ghosting in their comments so I'm not sure if it's common with AL displays. (You can use the browser's 'find' feature (on ghost) to jump to those comments.) Ted later replied:)
One thing I should have clarified, we are waiting on the reported color issues to be resolved by Apple rather than the ghosting. We live and die by color so the color issue is extremely important to our company. "

I wish I knew why some AL display owners had color consistency problems, but not others. (One reader's earlier comments included a theory that it may caused by bezel/frame pressure against the LCD panel.)


(added 12/22/2004)
"The company I work for owns 47 Cinema Displays. Mostly 22", 23" (non-ALU) and two 30". The "Pink-Effect" occures on only 2 of the panels. Both of them first generation 22" Cinema Displays (my first thought - but obviously wrong). The two panels with color shift are connected to a (MDD) G4/1.25GHz dual and an old G4/533.

The effect in my case does not appear under OS 9.2.2, only in OS X. Nonetheless, I changed the graphics cards (ATI) but with no effect. Then I changed the old 22" to newer 23" - still the same effect on the (MDD) G4/1.25GHz dual. User says the new display is a little bit better but still has between 5 to 10 percent magenta in it. In System 9.22 colors are perfect and stable.
On the G4/533 the 1st generation 23" is working fine. No color shift anymore.

On the other side - one of the changed displays still has it's pink behaviour if connected to other Macs, the other is doing fine.

All our displays are color calibrated and we use special room lighting to maintain a neutral light. But even with the lights switched off, the pink color remains. So it cannot be an odd light reflection from the ceiling-lamps.

We do hi-end color retouche for various magazines, but we can live with some color and brightness-shifts on the screen edges. (Some of the TFTs have this problem). But we cannot live with 5 to 10% magenta color shift all over the monitor.

Next I'll change the Mac at this particular users workplace, but my suspicion is, that it may be a system and/or driver problem.
-Heiko H.
ACSE "


(added 12/22/2004)
"I had a 23" too. All versions i saw in stores had the pink-problem ! I hoped to get a good one and so ordered one. But it wasn't ! It was pink....yellow on the edges and the worst....it had ghosting after just 8 minutes ! So i turned it back....now i wait for a better one. The main problem is that most customers don't see the pink....or don't want to see it (salesman in gravis store)!
-Marco W. "


(added 12/22/2004)
"I have a 23". At first I didn't notice any pink or ghosting. Now, 2 months later, it's driving me crazy. Pink on th left edge. Image ghosting that lasts for 20 seconds or so.
I use grey backgeounds and it's quite noticeable. Apple seems to be ignoring this problem. Bummer. A lot of money for a display that I can't rely on for my graphics and color work.
-Fred M. "


(added 12/22/2004)
"I just wanted to write in with a positive note about my display. I ordered a dual 2.5 and a 23" Cinema as soon as the AL displays were introduced. It showed up some weeks later (well before the dualie of course) and I was immediately worried because the box was a wreck. Not that it appeared to be mishandled in shipping, but the glued seams had come apart, making it look as if the foam packing and the monitor would drop out the bottom if you picked up the box by the handle.

Anway, I did not have any DVI macs at home, so I took the display to work the next day to check it out and make sure it had not been damaged and was not defective. My G4 500 TiPB has a couple of stuck pixels that I have learned to live with, but paying the premium for an Apple monitor, I really wanted it to be perfect. I ran several free pixel test utilities which cycle with increasing rapidity through various solid colors, and was delighted to find that I have not a single stuck pixel. I have a very slight falloff in brightness in the 1/2" around the very edge, but color and brightness are otherwise remarkably even.

I have now been using the monitor for several months of video editing, and I could not be happier. It has the limited gamut of any LCD, but I am not a pre-press person, and I have a real reference monitor for color correction, so this has not been a problem.
This is a beautiful monitor. I feel for people whose monitor arrived flawed, and I don't doubt that some are (Apple seems to rush products out the door these days), but some are perfect. As they all should be.
Chyld K. "


(added 12/21/2004)
"I have had a 23 inch display for months and I've been thrilled from day one. I have none of the issues discussed by the other readers. In addition to the great picture quality, I have mine mounted on a Pix-arm which makes the monitor an extra cool addition to my desk.
Jeff G. "


(added 12/21/2004)
"Just a heads up on a satisfied client and a 23"AL Cinema Display:

I set up a new unit last month for a designer I support. She has been very pleased with the color and crispness (she previously used a 22" Mitsubishi CRT with a G4 and now a new G5-Dual 2Ghz with the 23" AL) especially since she is a big photoshop user (her clients are education and financial corporations\ brochures, flyers, planners, calenders and bookcovers). We noticed no pink shift, nor brightness changes. Her studio is not brightly lit, which helps, and she keeps a neutral grey color as the background to avoid contrast issues with work.

The only thing that can use improving is the fact it lacks ergonomical features as in height from base. On her desktop, the AL sits about 2-3" lower than proper. (eyes should be level with top of edge of viewable screen). A VESA arm is not desirable. I recommended milling a piece of billet aluminum into a base that would act as a riser, but few machinists have the time to do a small object for me. I did find a site selling "iMove" (www.maxupgrades.com) and inquired if the unit is stackable. (pricey at $149). Their sales response was rather positive "..Each iMove raises the display about 1 inch....that is not a problem...i can design it one single piece so they can go from 1-5 inches as they want...-Syed Zaidi"

If my client is willing to participate, I may opt to get a unit that is 2" higher and see if its a solution.
Sincerely, Ed S. "


(added 12/21/2004)
"AL 30 inch display bought 11/22, very happy with it. Can't see any banding or any dead/stuck pixels.
-Jose "


(added 12/21/2004)
"I am running an Apple 20" Studio display purchased in October 2004 and it works well. The color and backlighting are even, without any of the problems that have been reported here and elsewhere, and no stuck or dead pixels.

I'm planning on purchasing a hardware calibrator to get the color looking better. My attempts at manual calibration have failed rather miserably. Overall I'm very satisfied with the display (especially the brightness) and all of the people who have seen it are impressed.
-Ryan A. "


(added 12/21/2004)
"Mike, I just bought a 20" Cinema display yesterday. So far I am completely happy with it. To my eyes it looks just about perfect in every way.

I tried looking at various solid gray backgrounds to see if I could find anything to complain about. I noticed the left side is maybe just slightly less bright than the right side, but this is very subtle and hard to see if you aren't really trying to look for it. On anything but a solid gray screen this would be impossible to perceive. I wonder if slight non-uniformities in the backlighting could cause some people to see color shifts. The same color at different brightness levels can sometimes be perceived as a different hue. In my case, I can see absolutely no color shifts whatsoever. To me the gray color appears quite consistent across the screen.

So far, from what I've read, it seems there have been fewer complaints about the 20" version. Some possible theories:

  • Smaller screen is easier to backlight more consistently.
  • People who buy the 20" are not as critical.
  • The 23" has its own unique and more severe problem not present in the 20" model.
    Tony "
  • Not everyone with a 23in reported problems though, although that model had the most complaint mails overall.


    Not an owner report, but comments from someone that saw a 30in on display.

    (added 12/21/2004)
    "i was at a store here in vancouver, bc (london drugs) selling the 30" model and i thought it was just amazing. i tried to look for any colour shifting or anything of that nature but no matter how hard i looked i couldn't find any fault. i work w/graphics as well so i'm pretty miticulous about little stuff and all i can say is i walked out of that store blown-away by that screen. niiiice! except for the price which was more than what apple USA sells plus the conversion to CDN bucks.
    Victor O. "

    Although it's way out of my price range, I'd love to have one of the 30in models.


    (added 12/21/2004)
    "I have a 20". I haven't seen any weird color issues. The display look beautifull.
    I use it with my 1Ghz SuperDrive PB G4. When brightness isn't at 100% on the PB I see similar pinkish color issues so I think I know what they look like.
    -Gregory S. "


    This reader notes his 20in AL was superior to his previous 20in ADC model:

    (added 12/20/2004, 7PM)
    "... I thought I'd chip in with a positive report about my 20". I also owned the previous translucent 20" Cinema Display, and this one is a noticeable improvement. I do graphics designs, though primarily for electronic mediums (so I have few issues with CMYK etc), and the color/brightness has stayed consistent so far for the 2-3 months I've had it. I have run through all the standard uniform gray tests, along with other color calibration tests (I of course do these with every new monitor), and the display has been fine with the exception of a single dead pixel towards the bottom right of the screen.
    The refresh rate (response time) has proved generally acceptable, though admittedly I do not do much in the way of FPS gaming or video editing on this machine, so I care more about fidelity, brightness/contrast, and resolution. Anyway, so far so good with this early 20". Keep up the great work on the site.
    -zenophex "


    (added 12/20/2004, 7PM)
    "I have a 23" AL Display, my boss uses a 30" AL display. We are both extremely happy with our displays. Neither display has uneven backlighting, pink tint, no burnt/dead/stuck pixels (quite impressive on a 30" display considering the # of pixels), nor any other problems that I have read about.

    I work for an Apple Specialist and have seen roughly 20-30 of the AL displays pass through without ONE single complaint. After the first 5 or so that we sold I began reading reports of the various issues that people were having so we begin opening and testing all of the displays before they left. (Now that's a dealer I'd want to buy a display from.-Mike) I will admit that color accuracy has not been a concern when I have tested the displays, but any pink hue, or warm hue in general was easily calibrated out.

    Most of our clients are in the Graphic Design or Print Industry, so I believe that if any of these displays was unsatisfactory we would have heard from our clients by now.

    I suggest your readers take a walk through their local Best Buy. Circuit City, or what ever electronics store. I believe they will find that Apple displays are in line (or better) with the other LCDs on the market.
    Jesse"

    Before I get more flaming mail from those with problem displays I'll say what they probably will - a graphics professional wouldn't shop for a display at stores like Best Buy, Ckt City, etc. (their typical display line isn't in the class of these AL cinema displays, nor are most in their price range typically.) Historically apple displays have been good I think and I can only guess there's some mfg issue on those that have reported problems. I've been happy with the displays from apple I've personally owned (a 22in DVI cinema, more than 6 powerbooks over the years, only a wallstreet had some display problems. All the PB G4 screens were flawless to my eyes.)
    As I said I know that on anything you're more likely to hear about problems than from those w/o any problems (that's human nature) so it's good to hear more positive reports. I know that's of little consolation to those that saw problems though (sometimes repeatedly).
    When I mentioned I saw several 20/23/30in displays at 2 stores that looked fine to me, I received several mails on tests to run (implying I had missed something) - granted I did not run a series of tests but did look for color and backlighting uniformity - they looked good to my (non-pro graphics guy) eyes. But from their comments, I don't doubt that those that reported color consistency problems actually had them. Hopefully they will get a satisfactory display.


    Another in a recent string of positive reports:

    (added 12/20/2004, 5PM)
    "Hi, I work for a local Apple Reseller, in fact, one of the only one in Quebec (Canada). We have a 20 inches and a 30 inches on the floor and they look great, no problem at all.
    ... and no customer had any problems with theirs; I haven't heard of any. Hope this helps. Continue your great job with your website. It's always useful!
    Bert. "


    (added 12/20/2004, 5PM)
    "I bought a 23in AL Cinema screen a few weeks ago and have not had any problems whatsoever. I was looking around and I think there has been some sort of silent design change with the 23inch screens. I think it would be beneficial for people to include the ship date from manufacturing on their box if it is available. Mine was November 17th.

    As time moves on the old stock should change out and the problems should go away. To note I have am extremely meticulous about finding flaws in the products I buy and check almost everyday for the numerous problems I've heard about these displays. My screen has been on everyday for the past two weeks under nearly constant use, so I'm fairly confident that if a problem hasn't cropped up by now, it won't.
    Thanks, Benjamin P "

    Good to hear. (Please include your ship date in reports if you know it or a S/N also - you can mask the last couple of digits.) Thanks.
    One earlier reader post (below) theorized that the cause of the color consistency problems could be bezel/frame pressure against the panel.


    (added 12/20/2004)
    "I am a freelance graphic designer/photographer who purchased an Apple 20" Cinema Display on Nov. 15, but didn't get a chance to use it until Dec. 15. I made the desktop gray, which is what most designers do so their background is neutral.

    Upon doing so I noticed that the monitor was not evenly colored: being pinkish gray at the left 1/3 and a yellower, darker gray at the right 2/3s. When I called Apple Tech Support, they told me it might be the monitor's backlighting. So now I have to bring a brand-new monitor in for testing. Talk about losing consumer confidence!!

    I have been an Apple advocate throughout my entire 15+-year career. This situation is very frustrating in that I get a monitor which has been promoted by Apple itself, for its color accuracy and evenness -- AND TARGETED TO THE DESIGNER MARKET where exacting color is essential -- only to find that it is under the standards that Apple proclaims (see Apple's PDF on the Cinema Displays).
    Needless to say that at approx. $1300, one should be getting a high-quality, dependable product!
    What a bummer.
    Michele B. "

    I really wonder what the percentage is of owners of these AL displays that are happy with them vs not. (With most hardware complaints there may be 100, 1000 or more users w/o problems to every one with a problem.) I know you're 10x more likely to hear about problems, but there's been enough of these in the past to make me a bit leery of buying one. (Although I'm not a big ADC fan, some dealers still have stock of the previous Cinema HD's at $1500 or so and any stock of the 20in models would be around $1000 I suspect .... or look at another brand of large LCD display.)
    BTW: I continue to ask for reports on these displays from owners that are happy with them also, not just those with problems.. (Although there are some reports on the page from those that said they were happy with their displays, most who wrote were not.) If you own an AL display and are happy with the image quality - let me know.
    As I said previously, I saw several AL displays at two Richmond stores that looked fine to my eyes, but I'd be less than honest if I said the number of past complaints didn't make me a bit leery of buying one right now. (Not that I can afford that luxury at the moment.)


    PCMag review of Apple 30in Cinema Display (12/10/2004) Several readers sent a note about PCMag's review of 30in Cinema Display, rating it 3 of 5 stars. After all the reports from AL cinema display owners in the last couple of months (many noting color consistency problems - see this Dec. 2nd news post for one reader's guess as to the cause of that), I was curious about their comments. They noted no apparent pixel defects in their sample and said color tracking and brightness uniformity looked good, although some some slight banding on color ramps were seen. They also mentioned moderate smearing with moving images. One of their summary comments said it was "not well suited for the professional graphics market".
    I recently saw one of these in person at an Apple store. A friend with me echoed my first impression (in a voice imitating SNL's "Tiny Elvis") - it's Huge. As I mentioned earlier, I saw several displays in two stores that looked fine to me (but granted I'm not a graphics professional and as others were quick to point out that day - I did not run a battery of tests on them.)


    Reports from the Dec. 2nd, 2004 news page:

    " I had originally post(ed) this on Apple discussion boards.
    I am a professional hi-end color retoucher and have been battling on my own with this uneven color, pinker and brighter on the sides. I thought it was just me until yesterday when I took the monitor to the Apple store and another customer saw my box and remarked "Oh you must have the pink problem".
    I demonstrated the problem to the Genius guy who agreed that he could see the color shifts from center to sides.
    I used a 50% gray filled 8in PhotoShop document and slowly moved it across the screen.
    I have already set this monitor back to Apple once and had it returned to me with the comment that the color was within Apple specifications. The SoHo Apple Store said they would send it in for repair. One week later the momitor returned with no repair and as uneven color as before.

    I have tried to calibrate this monitor with the "Eye One" hardware device.
    Depending on where I place the device completely different profiles are created based on the uneven color.
    I have work(ed) in many shops on the clear 23in. The problem is not present there.

    This is a very SERIOUS ISSUE!!
    I want to get what I paid for!
    Below is a quote from Apples own promo pdf

      "Consistently accurate colors. Supports a wide color gamut; maintains true color from edge to edge and over time; "

    PLEASE HELP ME APPLE!!!
    Malcolm T."


    Here's a report from a reader that finally got one he's happy with:

    " About a week ago I sent you a letter expressing my dissatisfaction with my new 23" ACD. This was the culmination of four months of "bitching" about the new displays. So I wanted to send this update as it is my first chance to say something positive about these units.:

    I recently acquired another (new) 23" display which has now been up and running for several days. Out of the box, this unit is orders of magnitude better than the first one. For one thing there is NO PINK!!! None. Nada. And this with the "default" profile which I presume was installed with 10.3.6. The edges look good, just a hint of darker tone at the extreme left side but nothing like the 1.5 - 2" wide yellow band the "old" one has. I think this has to do with the matte finish on the hard coating as, when viewed head on, it disappears, even with a pure white desktop.

    The backlighting is also very even. I have a gray JPEG that represents about a 60% screen. When used as the desktop image on the old unit, the gray was full of noise in the form of green "speckles" On the new one the gray is so even that you would think it was painted on. The gray image also showed the uneven backlighting of the old screen, noticeable to the point that you could see where the tubes were based on the "hot spots". The new one shows no variation at all.

    I also had problems with my computer having kernel panics and freezes with the USB breakout connected. Happened any time the computer attempted to enter sleep mode. This problem has disappeared with the new display.

    I would have to say that it's not "perfect" due to the very slight (and I do mean slight) darkness at the extreme left edge but, if my first display had looked this good, I would have never have had a complaint. Please bear in mind that I know what to look for and I've done all of the tests. I have to say that I am very pleased with this unit. It's hard to believe that this is the same panel because the overall quality is so much better than my first one. No one will tell me if the "new" units use different panels but if this is the same one, someone has done some serious "tweaking"... Another thing is that the new unit does not get nearly as hot as my "old" one. It gets very warm but not really hot even with the brightness at full (do not try this at home!).
    Praise de Lawd!
    FWIW the serial # is:2A4441G2PKL
    Checking here:
    http://www.chipmunk.nl/cgi-fast/applemodel.cgi
    (that's just the CGI script and it expects a S/N string to be passed to it
    but I found the page where you can enter the S/N-Mike

    http://www.chipmunk.nl/klantenservice/applemodel.html)
    reveals:
    Serial number: 2A4441G2PKL (cleaned up from '2A4441G2PKL ')
    Model: Mxxxx Cinema Display HD 23 inch
    Factory: 2A
    Production year: 2004
    Production week: 44 (November)
    Production number: 1702 (within this week)

    Since I had this unit on 10/30 I have to wonder about the 11/'04 production date but this is obviously a recent production "model".
    Thank You, David D "


    Possible Cause for Color Problems?
    A reader sent comments on what he thinks is the cause of the color consistency problems many have reported:

    " 23" Cinema AL non-uniform screens
    Dear Mike, Maybe it is of interest to your readers:
    The discoloration (pink/magenta corner or blueish corners) of TFT is an often mentioned problem for larger than 20" displays. If you look at the incoming inspection routines of these displays it's obvious that they look good, but during the inspections they are not mounted in an enclosure. The enclosure is the problem. The whole prolem can be figured down to what the manufacturers call: panel distortion. The Panel does not fit - or better is not 100% even mounted in the metal face that keeps the panels inside the enclosures. It's not only Apple that suffers from that problem. Eizo's CG21 is also a well known victim of this. If one pushes the upper corners of a display you can see how the colors change. A neutral gray in the area becomes visibly colored. It looks a bit like an old tube that gets to much magnetic smog. But with a TFT you don't have the chance to make a high power degauss.

    I've personally tested countless 23" apple cinemas and other 23" displays so have a very good overview and i can tell you that - reviewed with colorimetric approaches - the older 23" in acrylic housing has a far better uniformity.

    So basically, it's not the panel's problem, it's a problem with the housing. I think that the older acrylic housing was not that stable. The AL housing in oposite is very stable and forces the panel to follow it's shape. Someone at Apple should think about slight change of the enclosure design. I know companies that have changed the inner housing due to customer complaints.
    My compliments for your webpage
    Joern S.
    Editor of MACup Magazine, germany "

    I've seen a similar problem with several Dell notebooks in the past - where the plastic panels (lid structure) was applying undue pressure (most often in the center for those I saw) and it affected the display uniformity (but the pressure on those was from the back side and the effect was a noticeable difference in brightness usually.).


    " Hi Mike, I noticed someone wrote you about the Burlingame, CA Apple store and their big bad pink displays. (from the previous reports here) I was there too and it's not that bad. All the stores I've been to have the same 23inch "problem" but some are worse than others. The Burlingame store in particular has it the worse I've seen so far. I've seen some near perfect ones also but if you look real hard you can find something wrong in all monitors. I've seen CRT's that cost thousands that had a red tint in corners, tops and sides (you name it). (being analog/tube based, they can be affected by many things, even magnetic fields and often have a large number of user adjustments like my FW900 Sony has. But still almost impossible to get a perfect display from edge to edge, even using the adjustments in my experience-Mike)
    As for the Burlingame store they still didn't update to 10.3.6 yet and they probably didn't even bother to calibrate their monitors either. They are very busy at that store and they're too busy trying to sell, sell, sell. I went as far as hanging out in that store with my cup of coffee and asked several people what they thought about the displays, none of them noticed and two of them were graphics professionals! They did notice after I pointed the areas out.
    They admitted that they would still buy the 23 over the 20 just for the size. Also, it's not uncommon to be calibrating a monitor every 10-14 days anyway. I'm not saying these displays are OK and nothing's wrong so let's just hug Apple and forgive them. No, you have to look real hard to find this issue on some of them and others it's pretty obvious especially when they're right next to a different display.
    Anonymous "


    " Mike,
    I'd like to add to my previous email explaining that the 20" aluminum displays have the same issues as the 23" except for the pink coloration.

    I got my 3rd replacement display today and this one also has the color discoloration issue and the sides are yellow/dirty. My past 2 monitors only had issues with he left side, this last monitor has issues with both sides being brownish. Plus this last monitor has a black dead pixel so I'm even more frustrated.

    My experience:

    • Bought and received my first 20" early July
    • Brought it for testing at Apple Store in October and sent for repair. Came back 3 weeks later with a note saying that nothing was repaired because nothing was found to be wrong (Genius at Apple Store did see the problems). Got a replacement display after painful fight with Store Manager who said their system said I had a refurbished unit (Called Apple care who said my display was bought new, I had paid full price). I finally got a replacement mid-November.
    • Brought the replacement for testing at Apple Store on Nov 30, genius sees problem after I show him what to look for. Store Manager (another one) gave me attitude and didn't want to refund my money. Since the genius told him my monitor was defective, I got a replacement. Replacement is worst, right side is brownish in addition to left side being brownish and having color discoloration issues. This monitor has 1 dead black pixel.

    I've paid so much for Apple products and it's not the first time that I feel so frustrated for buying something that to my opinion is not worth its price tag because of being defective.

    For the readers who would like to test their monitors, this is what I do:

    1. Open a finder window and place the top left edge of the window in the middle of the screen. Pay special attention to the darkness of the grey on that left edge. Then move the window so that the left edge travels from the middle of the screen to the left side of the screen. Do this back and forth between the middle and left edge and see if the grey color remains consistent or becomes brighter once the window is on the left.
    2. The second test is with iTunes. iTunes uses light blue stripes as background. Move the iTunes window across the screen. See if the blue stripes become washed out on the left side of the screen.
    3. As for the yellow/dirty edges, just put a white background (or open an empty word window) in a dark room and you can see if the white becomes brownish on the left/right sides of the monitor. Pay special attention to the corners of the monitor.

    I am hoping to hear that many people have perfect monitors but I doubt a lot of people can say so. This is just based on my experience with 3 monitors over a 5 month period.
    Olivier B. "

    There's also some testing method notes on the previously linked page w/23in AL display samples. Another reader sent suggestions for testing:

    " ... Set the desktop to solid white and look at the far right/left sides, they usually appear yellowish...
    Set the desktop to solid gray and look at the area just to the left of the center, it usually appears slightly darker/cooler or bluer than the rest. Sometimes the left side also looks pink, on the gray desktop.
    Thanks, MikeS
    http://DreamLight.com
    Fifteen Years of Award-Winning Multimedia "


    A 23in display owner sent a report about ghosting:

    " Hi Mike,... as a new Apple user, I just bought an Apple Cinema Display 23" Alu, and...well it has an evident ghosting issue... so evident, that Apple decided to remove my message on the official discussion board. :(
    anyway, you can see it here:
    http://www.pokestudio.com/cinemadisplayhd/cinema1.jpg
    . it happens whenever I hope a high-contrast document and I keep it open for 5 minutes. then I minimize it...
    http://www.pokestudio.com/cinemadisplayhd/cinema2.jpg.
    and, as you can see, it leaves its ghost for 20 seconds (depending on desktop color settings)
    I'm so sad, it's the second bad display that I get within 7 days... the shop assistant told me they won't give me a third display because the "testing period" lasts 7 days, then I must stick with what I bought or call AppleCare.
    I called Apple Care, and they told me I must send the display to Holland, they'll evaluate it and they MIGHT send me a brand new display, but they added: "it takes time...you'd better know it before sending".
    So, now I don't know what to do. I need this display, I need it because I'm a graphic designer... In the meantime, I'd like to let ppl know that this series is BAD, because it is right, they must know. Before being an Apple user I knew that Apple meant quality stuff, but I'm starting to feel tricked and betrayed.
    greetings from Roma!
    Manuele "

    I can't say was I've tried this sort of test on LCDs (although ghosting is common for high-persistance phosphor CRT displays and there's been a kbase doc from apple I think on menu bar 'burn in' (so to speak) on LCD displays as I recall.)


    Reports from the Nov. 29th, 2004 news page:

    " I too have the same problems with 23" display.
    Im just going to copy and paste a post added to the Apple Discussion forum today ( it will probably be deleted soon ) Also, i am tired and a bit stressed out right now so i don't want rewrite another long email :) (some typos corrected)

    My battle with Apple continues ....
    I purchased a G5 2.5 and new 23" display back in September. From the first day of using the 23" display i noticed that the colour was not consistent across the display. It also got worse over time, the edges look dirty and yellowish. Basically all the same problems that everyone else has been describing.

    I had Apple Care, so i though the problem would be resolved quickly. Firstly they kindly sent me a loan display to use while the 23" display was taken away for repair. The loan display was an early cinema display, which is fine but they forgot to send the power pack ! After days of sending the wrong cables and numerous phone calls i got the loan display working. So my 23" alu display went on a trip to Holand for repair.

    It came back a few days later, they said it had no faults and passed all the tests. Ummm, i was not happy as you can imagine. Anyone i showed the display to could see the problem. Ok. so i asked Apple to replace it, which they did.

    2nd Display, the same problems. PINK and dirty yellow edges. Hardly a display worthy of it's price tag. so i rang Apple again, explained i was not happy. They sent an Apple engineer round to look at the display and take it away for repair. ( the 2nd display ).

    Days past, weeks past .... Then i get a call from Apple, they tell me problem solved. The display has been fixed and passed all the tests. Someone will be round the next day to drop off the fixed display and take away the 1st one and loan display. This guy turns up and within seconds says he can see the fault and says the display does not look good. So he signs a form to say so and takes the display away.

    This guy turns up ( a really nice guy actually, does not work direct for Apple but for a Apple centre in Barcelona ). He has no display with him !! I ask what is going on. He says that the display could not be fixed because no problem could be found, it passes all the tests.

    At this pointy i am fairly stressed out and angry. I was told the display has been fixed and nothing has been done. So i call Apple ( this guy is waiting in the house ), they tell me that there is no problem with the display i have and it is PERFECT, no problems at all. There is nothing more they can do, they suggested if i need a really accurate display i should buy a different display !!

    I said i could not believe what i am hearing. She told me all the 23" displays are the same, that the colours are not consistent and that they all pass Apples tests so there is no problem. I was told they pass a different test than the 20" and the 23". (I assume he means 30in.-Mike)

    I then asked could i have a full refund or the possibility of upgrading to the 30". I was told that she did not think a full refund is possible because i have a replacement display and not the original !! I explain that you had forgotten to return my original display. So it looks like i am stuck with this display. It is not a bad display but it is not perfect and for the price i paid i expect better. Much better.
    Oh. I was sent an iSight for free. Maybe apple feels that is fair compensation for a less than perfect 2K display. I was sent this more because of all the mistakes and errors made whilst dealing with this case rather than for a less than perfect display.

    I am angry, upset and feel conned. I also know i am not alone. Apple said to me " ALL THE 23" DISPLAYS ARE THE SAME, THAT IS JUST THEY WAY THEY ARE. IF YOU WANT A BETTER DISPLAY BUY A DIFFERENT ONE"
    I would also like to add a few quotes from the Apple website.

      " What's more, Apple uses the best technology in the industry to minimize color shift at wide angles, which ensures that a color on a pixel in the center of your display looks the same as that color on a pixel in the corner. "
      http://www.apple.com/displays/technology.html.

      "...These issues fade away with an all digital signal. DVI transmits a distortion-free digital signal from a digital location in the graphics card to a digital location on the display's screen. This digital connection gives you the full clarity and stability of liquid crystal technology - with sharp, clear pixels from edge to edge. "
      http://www.apple.com/displays/digital.html

      "... This gives you the peace of mind that an Apple display will integrate perfectly into your color workflow, ensuring accurate color from capture to screen to print. "
      http://www.apple.com/displays/technology.html

    Well, that's really just the 'cut to the chase' version of the story. I am so angry at the moment. It looks like i will be stuck with a faulty display, its never nice to see hard earned money wasted.
    Anyway, i would like to know your reaction on this. My real worry is that Apple will quietly fix the problem and all of us who have a faulty display will be forgotten. What should i do, fight for a refund ? just keep quiet and wait till Apple fixes the problem then fight them for another replacement display ?
    Cheers, Stuart
    Eatpixels.com "

    I looked at Cinema display samples in a Richmond Apple store and a Richmond CompUSA store (20, 23in and 30in models) on Sunday while some friends were Xmas shopping and to be honest, they looked good to my eyes. (But then they were store demo models and I'm not a graphics professional. But I'm not blind to display details either.) From what I saw - those store displays did not appear (to me) to have the problems some owners have mentioned.
    A reader replied to this post saying he's seem some store demo displays with the problem:


    " I noticed your e-mails about discoloration on the 23" Cinema Displays. I just happened to be at the Apple Store in Burlingame, CA today and noticed that their store model 23" cinema display hooked up to a G5 system has pink discoloration in the corners. It's very obvious, even in the less-than-perfect lighting conditions where the monitor was placed. I don't think you need to be a rocket scientist to know something is wrong with the display.
    ...there is no way that Apple can deny there is a problem with some of these displays after seeing it in the store. The corners were so pink there is no way even a consumer would accept that monitor for regular use, let along someone who works with exacting color. -Steven M "

    Even though the demo displays I saw at the Richmond stores looked ok (I didn't spend a lot of time on them, just a quick visual check), after all these reports from owners that saw problems with them (and the trials they went through) would make me lerry of buying one. (Although that's a moot point now, I couldn't afford one of these right now regardless.) The 30in model was impressive though (first time I had seen one in person). They had one 20in model in their 'refreshed' section (demo/refurbished items) and I wondered if it had either bad pixels or the color consistency problem.


    Reports from the Nov. 22nd, 2004 news page:
    This one is from the author of the web page with display image samples linked here back on Oct. 21st, in reply to some comments on these displays from owners in Friday's news page.

    " Just thought I would copy you my post to Apple discussions:
    A courier came today to pick up the 23" ACD that I bought on Thursday last week. Immediately apparent pink bleached out vertical band on the left hand side, which at first I tried to remedy by re-calibration. Obviously this wasn't going to do it. I regret now not doing my usual vigourous research before buying this, and investigating these forums where it would have become instantly apparent that I should tread carefully!

    I have a 17" Studio display, which although not so bright, is infinitely better that the monitor that I have just sent back. I also felt that my powerbook 17" screen is superior to what I have just bought. I am a graphics professional, and colour matching is critical to me, as is an even display. I totally took for granted my previous experience of excellence with apple products, and bought this monitor on faith.

    I am getting another sent to me, but on reading of other peoples experiences, have little faith that I will see any improvement. I certainly hope that there are some good monitors out there, and that I can get one, but I dont know how far I will go if this second turns out to also have the same problem.

    The 30" is too much for my needs & the 20" is too small. The 23" is Just Right. I suppose that I will consider other manufacturers if there is no sign of Apple acknowledging the problem soon, although if this was an issue I knew would be dealt with, I would be happy to hang on.

    I too feel that Apple is a good company that makes excellent products that have always served me well, but if this quality control issue is not properly & swiftly dealt with, I think I may change my mind.
    I'll keep you all posted on No: 2
    Dan "


    " Hi Mike, I'm the one with the page at:
    http://dreamlight.com/insights/bugs/hd23.html
    Which shows pictures from the first and seconds ACD 23" that I had problems with (and testing procedures to show the problems). (I wish there were some larger photos) I have not yet returned the second unit (but do have an open AppleCare #), since I don't yet have any confidence that another replacement would be any better. Most of the users that complained on the Apple discussion boards have had the exact same issues, all replacements had the same exact problems, though to varying degrees... So far I don't know of anyone that got a replacement that was "good"... Some have given up and downgraded to the ACD 20" or have gone to other manufacturers... (some AL ACD owners wrote they had 'good' displays and didn't see any color problems or backlighting problems/inconsistencies to their eyes-Mike)

    The color shifts are subtle, as seen in the photos I posted at the above URL, and some users just don't notice it. So far there have been a few threads on the Apple boards of users claiming to have good ACD 23" monitors. I usually ask them to post photos of their monitors showing both solid white and solid gray. When they do post such photos, it's usually apparent that their monitors also exhibit the same problems, though some are worse than others...

    My personal feeling at this point in time is that most of the owners that are happy with these ACD 23" monitors probably haven't noticed the problems. Sometimes it can take about a month for it to really become obvious and if your not a trained graphics professional, the slight color shifts from left to right across the screen may not be a problem for you. Unfortunately, it's trained graphics professionals that this monitor is aimed at...

    I'd be interested to see solid white and solid gray desktop photos from anyone that claims to have a "good" aluminum ACD 23"... I'd be much more encouraged to return my second unit for replacement if I did see proof that there were indeed "good" units out there... I still have hope that Apple will eventually acknowledge and resolve this issue, I've been a solid Mac customer since 1984...
    -MikeS "

    I bought my first mac in 1984 also, the first model 128K Mac. (I still remember the arguments back then about "who needs color". LOL.)


    Here's the most recent mail from a lucky owner of the 30in model:

    " Hi mike:
    Been playing with my new 30inch ACD for a week or so now. No dead pixels, see no pink tinges or other color variations, but continue to see my usual pink elephants...
    Seriously, this is a very serious monitor and I am well pleased. Have to admit to a fair amount of trepidation before I pulled the trigger. I am happy.
    Bill H. "


    Reports from the Nov. 19th, 2004 news page:

    " Hi Mike,
    I own a 23" display with no problems, yet...after two weeks of use. I kind of feel bad because I told these guys on the Apple forums to get a life. I told them I did my own investigating by visiting 3 Apple stores and a Fry's Electronics in the same week to see the big problem. I guess I'm the only guy on the planet who doesn't care about the slight "essence" of magenta in the highlights. By the way I did manage to see a few "good" 23's in my little shopping escapade.
    As for the pink thing I did see some worse than others but then again I'd just calibrate the damn thing and move on with life. Then I was told to "try telling this to people in the graphics industry", funny thing, I DO WORK IN THE GRAPHICS INDUSTRY. I'm just too busy to worry about a little pink highlight in a monitor. I've worked with much worse monitors in my life. In my opinion this is the best display in the world. The 30" is nice too but that falls into a different category, it's a television! Keep up the great work,
    Niko
    And by the way, I'm running my display with my ancient G4/533(2001) until I get a new G5 in January (or whenever they announce the next crop). "


    " Hi Mike,
    I bought a 20" ACD in August at an Apple Store. I returned it twice after finding 1" long areas of dead/dimmed pixels. I insisted that I be able to view the 3rd sample before taking it home. It checked out perfect (using Dead Pixel Identifier), but 2 days later some dozen pixels had become stuck.

    Hard to swallow these kinds of problems on a $1300 display - especially after shying away from Apple displays for the last 10 years after owning a 1710 (you remember the fiasco with those - mine was right up there with the worst).

    I suppose 12 stuck pixels doesn't sound like a big deal, but I've never even seen a single stuck or dead pixel on any other LCD I've owned (Apple laptops, Samsung, Viewsonic, and Dell monitors).
    -Al "

    Apple's doc on pixel defects ( "About LCD display pixel anomalies") isn't very definitive as far as a specific number to qualify for a replacement. I've had very good luck with Powerbook displays (a PB G3 and 3 PB G4s over the years and none had any stuck/bad pixels). Even the original backlight on an old Powerbook G3 is still working after daily use for about 4 years now. (Of course now that I've said that it'll fail tomorrow...)


    " I just picked up my new dual 2.5 G5 system and struggled with the idea of which monitor to purchase with the machine. Originally, I was planning to go with a 3rd party monitor, but decided to go "the whole nine yards" with an Apple AL 23" display.

    After reading some of your reports, I'm wishing I had known this information beforehand. (I first posted the info here back on Oct. 21st and 3 times since then-Mike) I've performed the suggested grey and white screen tests as suggested and have found no pink cast. (At least not yet). But I do see a slight yellowish "dinge" color of the whites on the left 1" side of the screen. (Vertically) I'm still under 10.3.5 and I'm using a 6800 Ultra Card. Its not a horrible shift in brightness and color, but I suppose if I were a color expert or illustrator I'd be upset. Right now I'm just minorly annoyed. If it were to get larger, darker or affect more portions of the screen, I'd obviously recommend a new display.

    What's upsetting about all of this is the reseller, MacMall, states that all Apple display products, no matter who sells them, are subject to a 15% restocking fee should I wish to return it. The dealer states that Apple is the one imposing this on the resellers. If I would have purchased a 3rd party display I could have returned it within 15 days no questions asked. (many dealers charge a restocking fee on any return of a product that's 'working' at least. I've seen some dealers state on LCD displays that there's no returns for defects unless more than 8 pixels are stuck/bad for instance.)

    Ultimately, I'd have to say that I think its somewhat unrealistic to expect complete color accuracy and even backlight in any large flat pannel display. My viewsonic 19" VX900, which is no where near the bright white levels of the AL 23", also exhibits slight variations in the eveness of the backlite. (Usually around the edges) I've also seen, in the majority of flat pannels, that the outer edges of the screen are normally a bit darker than the center of the screen. Its entirely subjective I guess. If we compare this technology to the consumer market of LCD and plasma televisions, its no wonder manufactures are only warrantying the displays for 5-7 years. (Plasma's have a half-life and many TVs don't have more than a 1 year warranty, although many non-apple LCD displays have 3 year warranties.) This technology is still pretty infantile...but ultimately, except for obvious and extreme exceptions, do you think we're being unrealistic?
    Brian P. "

    I wouldn't say that LCD display technology was in its infancy (they've come a long way in brightness, response time, etc. over the years), but what's acceptable in quality/appearance (except in severe cases), can vary by the individual. The most common complaint seems to be the pink tint/color consistency issue. Pro graphics users would be more critical in general on color accuracy but I've not seen a sample of the problem in person to say if it would bother me personally. But considering the cost of the displays, I can understand any owner that sees the problem being upset.


    " I have a 20 inch ACD that has been perfect.
    -Terry T. "


    " Hearing stories of flawed AL Cinema Displays makes me think I was lucky. It's always tough to get a feel for actual percentages when you read reports on the internet since only the affected raise their voices. Count me as one with a flawless 23" Al Cinema Display. I received it back in July. There are no dead pixels, no uneven lighting, and no discolorations.
    This is the finest monitor on the planet and I relish every day I stare into its beautiful landscape. (Driving it with a DP 2.5GHz/2GB RAM/Dual 250GB HDs/nVidia 6800 Ultra)
    -James "


    " Hi Mike,
    I recently purchased a Dual 2Ghz G5 with a 6800DDL, Bluetooth and a 20" LCD. I have had no issues with the LCD, nor have I had issues with the G5 being "unstable" or unable to open stuff in Mail.
    The only thing I notice is that it is noticably louder than a G5 without the card (i was in a store today, and it's quieter)
    I also picked up a MX1000 LaserMouse today, so i'll let you know how it goes! :)
    Cheers, Stephen R. "


    " G5 2.0 DP w/ 3gb of RAM, 23" Cinema Display (purchased in late October.)
    AGP Cards: either nVidia G-Force FX5200 or ATI Radeon 9600 w/ 64mb for the G5, Resolution 1920 x 1200. Mac OS X 10.3.5 originally, upgraded to 10.3.6, Boot ROM revision 5.1.8f7

    All three cables are connected between the monitor and computer. My USB keyboard is connected to the connection on the monitor. I calibrated the monitor using the Apple Display calibration panel, and I have a very slight pink cast... but I've always had a slight pink cast to all of my previous monitors since 1990. Though if I choose the Cinema HD Display color profile, the monitor appears whiter, i.e., less pink. I don't have the problems that others have reported (no edge discoloration, for example.) I'd turned off the side buttons that control brightness since they were easily activated by my grabbing the side of the monitor.
    So, to summarize, my monitor thankfully appears to be fine.
    Best regards, Ivor "


    " Hey Mike,
    Keep up the great work - I really enjoy the site. Just a quick note that my 20" alu display is flawless, with no dead pixels or other imperfections as noted on your site. Also, my firmware update (Dual 1.8) proceeded smoothly.
    Hope this helps, Aaron "


    " Hey Mike,
    I myself have a 20 inch Alu display bought in August. No problems whatsoever with video, usb/firewire ports. It's a work of beauty. I have however posted 2 pics on my Homepage to illustrate a "tearing" problem with 23 inch Alu displays. It was sent to me by a fellow Mac user from the Discussion boards who does not know where to to go to get this problem fixed once and for all.
    Here's the link: http://homepage.mac.com/mtl_cescop.
    Have a great weekend, Frank "

    Tearing can happen when the framerate exceeds the refresh rate of the display (for Apple LCDs like this, usually 60Hz) - often seen in games if Vsync is not enabled for instance. The images at that link show the DVD player remote so I'm assuming it's a moving being played but it would be good if there was more info there. Update - Frank replied to my comments:

    " Hi Mike,
    I'm following up on the email I sent you regarding the tearing issue. It seems the fellow who sent me the pics experiences the tearing not only with dvd playback but also with iMovie, Itunes visualizer,vlc and with different video cards. He wishes to remain anonymous but here is a thread over at Apple discussion indicating more than 1 user experiencing the problem
    All the best, Frank "


    "re: 20inch alum cinema display
    mike,
    saw your posts regarding the monitors. i bought one this summer and recently noticed a single pixel column on the left side of my monitor has gone yellow. it is barely noticeable most of the time, but it is definitely there. i haven't addressed it with the apple store yet, but i am planning on it.
    cheers, chris "

    " My 20 incher is perfect, no problems whatever.
    -Ken "


    " A couple months ago I bought a 20" AL. The color was perfect but it had a slightly uneven backlight (bright band down left side, dark vertical band just left of center). I waited the two-week return period to see if it improved, but it didn't. So I took it back to the Apple Store and had them look at it. The genius said he couldn't see anything wrong. Granted, under the store's ultra bright lights and with the brightness cranked, the uneven backlight gets hard to see. But I was already expecting the unit to still be considered within specs, so I knew they wouldn't take it as a faulty return. I also looked at the 20" they had on display, and sure enough, it had the same problem, so I realized it was a design flaw, not a manufacturing defect. I paid the restocking fee, took my refund and got outta there.

    The thing that really depressed me was that the 23" on display had the pink hue. I asked him about it, and he said it was due to people messing with it all day. I almost referred him to the Apple Support Forums, but I figured he knew he was lying. I've also seen a pink 23" displayed at Frys. This is unbelievable. Just how extensive is Apple's denial?
    -BTV "


    " Hi Mike,
    I have the same color issues (yellow at edges, pink on left side in for about 4 inches) as others with my 23" Aluminum ACD. It has been in once already for repair via AppleCare, and came back saying nothing was wrong with it. I still have an active AppleCare case number, and am waiting until I have more confidence that Apple is taking these complaints seriously and correcting the problem before sending it back again.

    The 10.3.6 update did adjust the default calibration of the display away from having a pink tint over the entire screen, but has not corrected the side-specific color problems reported. It, to my eye, is definitely a hardware defect. I'm hoping Apple corrects this problem sooner rather than later -- right now I wouldn't recommend my experience with it to others.
    Regards, Kevin "

    If any owners of (Alum) 20in, 23in or 30in displays have seen problems (or not), let me know the specifics. Thanks.


    Reports from the Nov. 18th, 2004 news page:

    " Mike....
    This problem is weird because it gets worse with time....
    I bought two 23" when they came out . After a week, one started the pink problem. the other one stayed perfect.
    A month later, they both have the same pink problem. I've had to recalibrate to fix the problem many times. It's all over the Apple discussion site and there's no official word on this (yet). I'm just waiting for a new production batch to try and replace mine...
    regards, Chris "


    Yesterday another owner wrote about the problem:

    " I am the owner of one of the new Apple 23" Cinema Displays. I purchased this $2,000 piece of hardware based almost solely on the basis of the information contained in Apple's Technology Overview published on their web site:
    http://images.apple.com/displays/pdf/Displays_TO_06282004.pdf

    It is apparent to even the most casual observer that the 23" displays do not measure up to the high standards established by this document. The backlighting is uneven in degrees that vary from slight banding to extreme "striped" effects. The edges of the displays exhibit "dingy" bands of discoloration that have the effect of making the edges of the screen seem dirty. These discolored edge "bands" vary in width from .5 to 1.5 inches and appear more prominent on the left edge. The displays also exhibit a strong magenta "overtone" that, in many cases cannot be completely removed by color calibration and that often "re-emerges" even after being "calibrated" out. In addition to these issues, a number of users have reported having various problems related to the USB and FW connections.

    These flaws are not anomalous. The internet is rife with reports from buyers who are seeing one or more of these conditions on their new displays and Apple's own online support forums are aflame with protests.

    Nevertheless, Apple has remained frustratingly silent on these issues, leaving concerned buyers to wonder if they are going to be "left holding the bag". Complaints are being deleted on an almost daily basis from Apple's discussion forums as being "off topic". (has anyone else seen their thread deleted?-Mike) This fact makes it glaringly obvious that Apple has heard these complaints but has chosen to adopt a "head in the sand" position.

    I am aware that Apple has recently had to deal with a number of quality control issues, most notably the iBook logic board and Power Book battery problems. I am also aware of the difficulty and extra costs that these issues create for Apple. I and many others have expressed a willingness to "bide our time" and allow Apple to develop a solution. However, Apple's complete lack of acknowledgment of the problems with the 23" ACDs over close to four months since the introduction of the new displays has many of us feeling unusually frustrated.
    David D.
    (he later wrote)
    As far as I know, most of the issues are exclusive to the 23" units. (later reports from 20in owners indicate otherwise though) I have seen several 20" ACDs and they look fine. Also, several people of whom I am personally aware have "downgraded" to the 20" units after much frustration with the 23"ers and, other than the reduced "real estate, they are very happy with them. I have no first hand experience with the 30s but I have seen (nor heard) very little in the way of complaint.
    -David D. "

    William, a 23in display owner that originally thought his was OK (but later saw the problem) also wrote yesterday with a link to an article at theinquirer.net on the subject.


    In reply to a post above, a 20in Display owner wrote:

    " Mike, I am the owner of a 20" Aluminum display and confirm that the issues described by others with their 23" are also present on the 20" (except for the pink coloration).
    I bought my monitor in June and have had the uneven backlight, yellow left edge and color discoloration issues since the beginning. I waited until October for things to settle down, thinking that my monitor may just have been a bad batch, and then brought it for testing at an Apple Store on October 26. The genius didn't seem to know about the uneven backlight or color discoloration issue (the genius did know about the pink problem with the 23" but didn't want to talk about it).

    My monitor was sent for repair to a third party company and came back 3 weeks later with a note saying that they didn't see anything wrong with it so didn't repair anything. The monitor was all dusty with a dead spider on the back. I got it replaced with a new monitor at the Apple Store. I've been using the new monitor for 2 days and I can confirm that it also has the same issues, at the exact same places on the screen (left edge discoloration, unven backlight on left side and both right corners).
    Seeing how consistent these problems are with the 2 monitors I've owned leads me to think that it's not a bad batch problem but rather a serious problem with the production of these monitors (at least for the 20" and 23", I didn't have a chance to play a lot with a 30").
    Olivier B. "


    Reports from the Oct. 29th, 2004 news page:

    The Oct. 27th news page had a reader's comments on color consistency problems he (and others) had seen with new Aluminum 23in Cinema Displays (several samples) and a link to an article with screenshots (see Oct. 27th reports below). Here's another mail from an owner of the display on the problem:

    " Mike, First, a big thanks for the incredible site.
    This problem is weird because it gets worse with time....
    I bought two 23" when they came out . After a week, one started the pink problem. the other one stayed perfect.
    A month later, they both have the same pink problem. I've had to recalibrate to fix the problem many times. It's all over the Apple discussion site and there's no official word on this (yet). I'm just waiting for a new production batch to try and replace mine...
    regards, Chris "


    Reports from the Oct. 27th, 2004 news page:

    " Mike,
    Rather than re-create the wheel (he was going to write up an article for posting here w/phtotos), here is a link I found in the Apple Display Discussion's that shows the problem with some (new AL model) 23in Apple Displays.
    http://dreamlight.com/insights/bugs/hd23.html
    Please post the link to show other users what to look for when purchasing a high end monitor as Apple's.
    I might also suggest they use PiXel Check V1.2 before they leave the store to check for dead pixels.
    Thanks Mike!
    -- William R. "

    I mentioned in the past that when buying a display, I like to see it first if possible (esp. an LCD to see if you can spot any bad/stuck pixels), although many stores won't let you run any software on their computers, perhaps if you brought in your own powerbook (with LCD test utility on it) they'd let you connect it to the display for a test. (Not all stores may allow this but it's worth asking them.)
    I don't own one of these displays personally so I'm not sure how common this issue is, but welcome other Apple AL display owner feedback on this. (From 20in, 23in or 30in display owners.)


    Report from the Oct. 21st, 2004 news page:
    Here's the first 30in Cinema Display owner report:

    " Hey Mike,
    I haven't had the time yet to write a review yet, but I decided to take a few snapshots, and do have a few initial comments...

    1. Display is very bright. 1/4 brightness is an accurate representation of the output

    2. Color accuracy is pretty good out of the box, but I would definitely recommend a color calibration device such as the Monaco Optix XR (http://www.monacosys.com).

    3. This display is incredibly sharp and it handles the entire contrast range with ease. It is much sharper than any display I've seen, including the original Apple 23" HD and the Sony Artisan monitors.

    4. Not a single dead pixel (!)

    5. HD streaming from my firewire cable box looks great. However, the G5 can't upscale DVDs to fill the screen very well. The resulting image is pixelized and lacks sharpness (although understandable with the number of pixels that the DVD now has to fill). Response rate is not an issue - no ghosting nor other visual artifacts.

    6. I love the size of the 30". It beats two-23" HDs hands down. From the standpoint of a photographer, an actual size 16x20 photo can be previewed (not at full pixel view, however) on the screen.

    7. Games such as Homeworld 2 can actually play at full 2560x1600 resolution, which makes for a very impressive gameplay and graphical experience. Every single ship and part of the GUI is sharp. I haven't had the time to try it with any FPSs, but games that do not support such mammoth resolutions, such as Myst IV, suffer pixelation and blur.

    I am extremely impressed with this screen, as are all my friends, especially those working with large dual monitor configurations right now, in the advertising and graphic arts areas. My only complaint at the moment is that I sometimes lose the cursor at some location on the screen. It's also on the pricey end, but a very valuable purchase.
    Doug "

    If you missed it, I posted a review of the Mac Nvidia 6800 Ultra DDL Graphics card which included a full list of resolutions/refresh rates supported with a wide-screen Sony FW900 CRT. (Not fortunate enough to have a 30in Cinema to test with it.)
    BTW - I've always preferred to buy a monitor (especially an LCD) from a retail store that would let you try it before buying (i.e. look for any bad/stuck pixels - although most stores won't let you run software like an LCD pixel test utility on their computers). IIRC many years ago the policy on mac displays was 5 bad pixels/several touching, etc. to qualify for an exchange but that was changed several years back as I remember and the later doc on criteria I saw was not very definitive. Just a reminder that a) not all LCDs (especially this size) are going to be 'perfect' (and the old massaging a bad pixel trick rarely worked for me) and b) I'd want to see/check an expensive LCD if at all possible before buying it.

    I welcome other AL Cinema display (or other large LCD brand/model) owner comments comments.

    Return to Main News Page


    OWC XYM SPECIALS!
    (Ad/Sale items)

    = UPGRADES by Mac =
    Upgrades just for
    YOUR Mac!

    = Refurb Mac Pros =
    (Click for List)

    SSDs from under $50!
    Fast SSDs for Most Macs/PCs

    = ThunderBolt =
    Drives, Docks & More

    = HARD DRIVES =
    Up to 12TB HDDs
    HGST, WD, Seagate, Toshiba

    = 2.5in HDs & SSDs =
    Notebook Hard Drives and DIY drive/case kit bundles

    = MEMORY =
    Lifetime warranty RAM Upgrades!

    = OPTICAL DRIVES =
    Internal and External Superdrives/Blu-Ray drives

    = VIDEO / DISPLAY =
    Graphics cards, Displays, Adapters, Cables & more

    = AUDIO ITEMS =
    Interfaces, Cables, Software, Speakers, Headphones & more

    = SOFTWARE =
    Apps, Utilities, OS, VM, Games and more

    = WIRELESS =
    WiFi and Bluetooth Devices/Adapters/More

    = Repair Service =
    for iPhone, iPad, Macs

    = iPad/iPhone/iPod =
    Accessories, Cases, Repairs & More

    NuGuard iPhone Case *Extreme* Drop Tested!


    XLR8YourMac T-Shirts




     
    = back to www.XLR8YOURMAC.com =


    = Other Site Topic Areas =
    Mac Mods/Upgrades | CPU Upgrades | Storage | Video | Audio/HT | OS Updates/Network | Recent


    Copyright © 1997-2017. All Rights Reserved.
    All brand or product names mentioned are properties of their respective companies.

    Legal: Site Privacy and terms/conditions of use.