Looking for a laptop with a non-glare screen in Spain
Thread poster: Anjo Sterringa

Anjo Sterringa  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:14
Member (2003)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Jul 16, 2010

Yesterday I went out thinking I could just get another nice laptop with a matte (non-glaring) screen but ALL laptops had those horrible shiny screens that make working on them such a pain.

I saw one Toshiba Tecra with a matte screen but it was not in stock. Doing a search and checking with online shops in Spain only added to the confusion: they say none of the Toshiba Tecra A11 or otherwise have an anti-glare screen nowadays. Strange enough, the earlier reviews (in English) indicate the A11 did have a matte screen.

I checked A11-13C, 11Z, 14X, 14V. Apart from the fact some of the specifications do not seem to be correct (32 bit or 64 bit - I need 32 bit otherwise dictionaries will stop working), it is impossible to find out if there is actually a laptop on the market (in Spain) with a normal screen.

Does anybody have any suggestions? And if I have to use the "glaring" screen, which one is the least glaring? (LED backlight? LCD?)

Any comments and suggestions will be appreciated!


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FarkasAndras
Local time: 15:14
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Confusion Jul 16, 2010

LED backlights are more energy-efficient than other types of backlights. They have no effect on screen glare.
As to LCD, all laptop screens are LCD so that's not a factor, either.

Some glossy displays have more glare, others have less. I'm not sure if there is a way to know which are the worst offenders withot comparing them side by side.
Here's a list of glossy display brand names, I'd suggest that you avoid all of them:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glossy_Display_Branding


Your post is unclear on whether you want the exact laptop model you mention, or just any matte laptop... there are countless options for the latter, depending on what your other needs/priorities are.

Also, regrading 32 vs 64-bit:
All current laptop hardware you are likely to buy is 64-bit compatible. The difference is in the operating system (OS). Most computers are sold with Windows 7 64-bit preinstalled, but you may be able to get your computer with Win7 32-bit if you specifically ask for that. Alternatively, you can downgrade yourself. I'd expect that you always get downgrade rights to 32-bit, but I'm not sure if that's actually the case.
Also, in principle, everything should run on 64-bit Win7 (maybe in XP compatibility mode) so you shouldn't need to worry about getting a 32-bit system... but in practice, who knows.

[Edited at 2010-07-16 12:23 GMT]


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Joakim Braun  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 15:14
German to Swedish
+ ...
MacBook Pro Jul 17, 2010

My 17" MacBook Pro has a lovely matte screen, the best I've ever seen.
With brightness turned high I can sit indoors with a window in my back and almost no reflections on the screen from any view angle.

I can also work on it outdoors in scorching summer sunlight. (no fun, but not even remotely possible with any other laptop I've owned).

The matte screen was optional and may not be installed on MacBooks that you see in stores.


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:14
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Suggestion Jul 17, 2010

Anjo Sterringa wrote:

Does anybody have any suggestions?


I have a MB Pro which, annoyingly, has a shiny screen and I can't stand it. Luckily I'm not out much on the road, and when I'm not, I keep the MBP running with the lid shut, and I plug in an old but still excellent Apple 20" Cinema Display, which is matte. There are other makes of matte plug-in displays (such as Dell) which I hear are pretty good too.

The main thing is to make sure your laptop is capable of driving the external display you want.

Everybody who works with a computer for whom accurate colour and visuals are important (such as photographers and graphic designers) HATE those shiny screens. I think the manufacturers make them that way because they cost less to make (I can't think of another reason why they would; there are no advantages).

Anyway IMO it's better not to buy a monster-size laptop just so that you can have a big display. Buy the *smallest* laptop available so that you can work on it in a really confined space (an aeroplane, for example). THen when you're at home plug in the big *matte* display and you'll have a nice big translating space where you can have two open documents on screen side by side.

Just my 2c.

[Edited at 2010-07-17 19:12 GMT]


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:14
French to English
Can you try one? Jul 18, 2010

Anjo Sterringa wrote:

Yesterday I went out thinking I could just get another nice laptop with a matte (non-glaring) screen but ALL laptops had those horrible shiny screens (...)

Any comments and suggestions will be appreciated!


I had this problem late last year. I was convinced that glossy screens were the work of Beelzebub himself and that if I bought one, I would be blind within a week. Certainly on display in the stores I visited, it sometimes seemed almost impossible to see what was on the screen, rather than a reflection of the shop behind you. (Hmmm, perhaps their main purpose is to nail shoplifters...) But, as you are finding, matt screens are hard to track down.

In the end, having worked out the spec I wanted and so on, I just accepted that I couldn't (easily) get it with a matt screen, and bought one of the acursed glossy buggers anyway. And it's fine. Makes no difference to me at all, as far as I can tell. So maybe you could borrow one, see how it goes for an hour or two in your working environment...?

(And when, exactly, did the spelling matte become more popular than matt? )


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:14
Member (2008)
Italian to English
when Jul 18, 2010

Charlie Bavington wrote:
(And when, exactly, did the spelling matte become more popular than matt? )


When I adopted it, it become more popular by a factor of 1 person

[Edited at 2010-07-18 16:06 GMT]


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:14
French to English
Not picking on anyone :-) Jul 18, 2010

Tom in London wrote:

Charlie Bavington wrote:
(And when, exactly, did the spelling matte become more popular than matt? )


When I adopted it, it become more popular by a factor of 1 person


I wasn't having a pop at anyone here I noticed, during my research last year, that "matte" had popped up while my back was turned and was over-running the place. I gotta say, me no like. I keep thinking it ought be used it phrases like "Verily, wouldst thou that thy lappe-toppe comes with a screene that is matte, or preferest thou the glossie version thereof?"

(edit before someone points out you probably wouldn't use "sire" with "thou"!)

[Edited at 2010-07-18 15:27 GMT]


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FarkasAndras
Local time: 15:14
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Glossy vs matte Jul 18, 2010

Tom in London wrote:

I have a MB Pro which, annoyingly, has a shiny screen and I can't stand it. Luckily I'm not out much on the road, and when I'm not, I keep the MBP running with the lid shut, and I plug in an old but still excellent Apple 20" Cinema Display, which is matte. There are other makes of matte plug-in displays (such as Dell) which I hear are pretty good too.


Actually, nearly every monitor manufactured today is matte. Well, with the exception of Apple's monitors ("cinema displays").

That trend contrasts with the unfortunate trend to make laptop displays glossy (Apple is one of the worst offenders here, too).
BTW, they make glossy displays because they can provide greater brightness and much more vivid colours... in optimal environments. In suboptimal environments (i.e. in the real world) they often fail miserably. I have no idea why you think people who work with images for a living don't like glossy displays. Quite a lot of them seem to love them. In a darkened room, glossy displays are great, I'll give them that... but I don't always work in a darkened room so I'll pass on them, especially on a laptop.


[Edited at 2010-07-18 17:15 GMT]


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Maria Palma  Identity Verified
Austria
German to Spanish
+ ...
Try a Dell Vostro Jul 19, 2010

I've bought a Dell Vostro 3500 and the non-glare screen works pretty good. I can even use it under the sun....ok, not thaaaat long because my eyes get tired, but you can actually read the screen under the sun.
Probably you never had the intention of working in your laptop under the Spanish sun, but here in Vienna it's really nice...
My son has a Mc Book and I love it, the screen is perfect and everything runs so smoothly... but I decided to avoid Mac, I work with Trados, you know. I reckon I had some problems with the installation, though and I was very frustrated...but the Trados support team helped me and know is ok.

If you are on the road... the 3500 is ok, big enough to be comfortable but small and light.

Good luck and enjoy your new laptop


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