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Old 06-29-2013, 05:41 AM   #16
iamosam
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I guess most are okay/prefer the lighted screen. So I guess I will also go with the herd. In the worst case I can keep it off/very low. I will also try any screendim or similar app for desktop.

Thank you, all.
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Old 06-29-2013, 08:32 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
Are you talking about a Kindle Fire, here? Not really valid to compare that to a frontlit eInk reader - it's a totally different experience.
Lol, no I am certainly not talking about a Kindle Fire. I am referring to the Kindle Paperwhite.
Not a bad ereader, but I prefer my Kobo.
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Old 06-29-2013, 11:07 PM   #18
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Lol, no I am certainly not talking about a Kindle Fire. I am referring to the Kindle Paperwhite.
Not a bad ereader, but I prefer my Kobo.
HarryT probably thought you were talking about a Fire because you said "The Kindle's backlight". The Fire is the only Kindle with a backlight. The PW has a frontlight. Very important distinction when we're talking about eye strain!
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Old 06-29-2013, 11:22 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iamosam View Post
I guess most are okay/prefer the lighted screen. So I guess I will also go with the herd. In the worst case I can keep it off/very low. I will also try any screendim or similar app for desktop.

Thank you, all.
Good luck with your new reader!

I finally caved this year and bought a B&N Glow (had stuck with Sony readers up until them) because I wanted a front-light. I would have said before I got the Glow that the light was unnecessary. But now that I have it, I wouldn't want to go back to one without one.

I think the most unexpected benefit is when I'm reading at home with only a lamp or two on in the room. Before, the less-than-optimal lighting wouldn't have been bad enough to make me clip on a book light, but I would have strained to read the screen. Now I turn on the Glow light and I have bright, crisp words to read.

Also, the front light makes the eInk screen look much whiter - so the contrast is better.
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Old 06-30-2013, 03:59 AM   #20
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Lol, no I am certainly not talking about a Kindle Fire. I am referring to the Kindle Paperwhite.
Not a bad ereader, but I prefer my Kobo.
I thought you must be talking about the Fire because you referred to "the Kindle's backlight", and the Fire is the only Kindle that has a backlight.
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Old 06-30-2013, 06:28 AM   #21
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...The Fire is the only Kindle with a backlight. The PW has a frontlight. Very important distinction when we're talking about eye strain!
That is the main reason why I started this thread. I watched few videos of frontlit eink displays (watching in backlited laptop screen, so not sure how that counts). Anyways the lights of these ereaders with full brightness seemed as bad as the laptop/tablet screen.

The eink without light looked far better on the videos. As I said earlier, no way for me to get them in hand and verify, unless I buy one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FizzyWater View Post
...I would have said before I got the Glow that the light was unnecessary. But now that I have it, I wouldn't want to go back to one without one...
Even with the price diff counted?

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Originally Posted by FizzyWater View Post
...Also, the front light makes the eInk screen look much whiter - so the contrast is better.
How does that whiteness and contrast feel to your eyes? (I am thinking about the laptop screens here again, as I cannot read for long with white background). Will that be any different?
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Old 06-30-2013, 06:45 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by iamosam View Post
That is the main reason why I started this thread. I watched few videos of frontlit eink displays (watching in backlited laptop screen, so not sure how that counts). Anyways the lights of these ereaders with full brightness seemed as bad as the laptop/tablet screen.
But you don't use them at full brightness - or at least I don't. The purpose of the frontlight is to allow you to read in poor lighting conditions; you simply don't see the frontlight at all in strong daylight.

Quote:
The eink without light looked far better on the videos
My experience is that the light diffuser makes a small - and I mean a very, VERY small - difference to the screen clarity, but the benefits of the light hugely outweigh that.
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Old 06-30-2013, 07:04 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by iamosam View Post
That is the main reason why I started this thread. I watched few videos of frontlit eink displays (watching in backlited laptop screen, so not sure how that counts). Anyways the lights of these ereaders with full brightness seemed as bad as the laptop/tablet screen.
Videos will give you no idea of how your eyes will feel looking at the screen. I use the Glo's light at 1% in the dark - that wouldn't show up on video, especially using non-professional equipment, so they crank the brightness just to get something to show up on the video. Or, if you're one particular video-review team, you crank the brightness up to full, then whinge about how it's too bright.
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Old 06-30-2013, 07:09 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by meeera View Post
Or, if you're one particular video-review team, you crank the brightness up to full, then whinge about how it's too bright.
... or that it shows uneven brightness or colour patches. Who cares what it looks like a maximum brightness in a dark room? It's what it looks like in the conditions that you'll use it in that matters, not extremes like that. Nobody uses maximum brightness in darkness - it would be blinding.
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Old 06-30-2013, 07:20 AM   #25
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... or that it shows uneven brightness or colour patches. Who cares what it looks like a maximum brightness in a dark room? It's what it looks like in the conditions that you'll use it in that matters, not extremes like that. Nobody uses maximum brightness in darkness - it would be blinding.
I agree. My paperwhite screen is not perfect but in the conditions and settings use it the lighting is pretty even and the colours don't show.

Back to the OP's original question, I've had lengthy reading sessions at night with my paperwhite and I've never had eye strain. In fact it's so comfortable that I often fall asleep whilst reading . On the contrary I find the light from backlit devices to be too harsh for reading at night and it has the opposite effect, it keeps me awake even if I was feeling sleepy before using it.
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Old 06-30-2013, 05:35 PM   #26
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In daylight I have zero problems. Just keep the screen brightness down at a level at which you have good screen contrast, but without it looking like it's lit up like an iPad.
This is THE way to go. As soon as the ereader starts to look illuminated, then your front-light is set too high (IMHO).

I have read many a time for multiple hours, on a Paperwhite, and I experience no problems. Believe me, with my poor eyesight and close reading distance (I use glasses when using a computer, but I don't like that when reading, for some reason), I would have noticed any problems within the first hour.

As long as there is any ambient light, no matter how low, you can set the front-light to a level that will make reading comfortable. The only situation in which I don't like to read, not even on a front-lit reader, is when it's pitch black. The reader will not look any different from an LCD screen in that situation. This is an extreme situation however: this would only happen in my bedroom or computer room with all shutters and curtains closed and all lights off. Obviously, I won't create such a situation on purpose and then go read. That'd be ridiculous.

Last edited by Katsunami; 06-30-2013 at 05:42 PM.
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Old 07-03-2013, 02:07 PM   #27
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... (on laptops & tabs) and cranking down the brightness (ScreenDim can help on Android tabs) can make a huge difference though, at least for me, making no where near as bad as a few years ago.
Thanks for the application suggestion. I just saw the dimmer application/utility (http://www.nelsonpires.com/software/dimmer/) for windows and this really makes a huge difference. I am using redshift, 'white on black' in coolreader and 'color that site' extension in firefox to get 'white on black' for sites, and my eyes still hurt. But this utility changes everything.

Now I don't know why I did not think/search about it before.

And now I also realise why front-lit displays (if you can keep the light/brightness very low) got full marks from you people.

Thanks again.

Last edited by iamosam; 07-03-2013 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 07-03-2013, 05:38 PM   #28
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I thought you must be talking about the Fire because you referred to "the Kindle's backlight", and the Fire is the only Kindle that has a backlight.
Ah, my terminology was misleading. I meant the frontlight.
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Old 07-04-2013, 03:23 AM   #29
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Given that the purpose of this thread is specifically to discuss the differences between frontlights and backlights, it's kind of an important distinction .
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Old 07-04-2013, 03:34 AM   #30
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I find the Aura light a little less comfortable on my eyes than the Sony lighted case light, and I prefer a reading lamp.

Still it is good to have the built in light on occasion. On the bus for example or in a dimly lit place. Once I used it to find my way in the dark when the power died.

I doubt I would want a reader that the light would not turn off, but I have not tried one.

Helen
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