Wednesday, June 27, 2012 [Tweets]

Retina MacBook Pro Burn-In

Lloyd Chambers:

The problem occurs in as little as 20 minutes; close the window and the desktop is left with a latent image; a ghost image of whatever text or graphic was in the window left on screen.

Quitting the Finder or logging out has no effect, indicating that the problem is a hardware (screen) issue, not just a screen-bits (graphics memory) issue.

Suzanne Choney: has contacted Apple for comment; we will update this post if we hear back. Individual users, sharing their stories on the company's support site, have said that when they've notified Apple, or taken their laptops into Apple stores, new laptops have been ordered for them as replacements. The reason for the problem has not yet been explained.

There are also threads about this in Apple’s forums and at AppleInsider.

Update (2012-07-03): He’s getting the computer replaced.

Update (2012-09-16): Vojtech Rinik:

As it is always with Apple, there is one more thing. Some of the new Retina screens suffer from a picture burn in issue. The related discussion on Apple Forums is over 200 pages long.

My Retina MacBook Pro also suffers from burn-in, although it did not manifest at the time I wrote this post. I can live with the image retention it as-is, and I don’t want to go through the hassle of replacing the computer. The replacement screen may also be defective, and Apple may break or damage something else while replacing the screen. The main reason I got this computer was the months-long process of getting Apple to repair my previous MacBook Pro. However, I also worry that the burn-in problem will get worse over time and that therefore I should get it replaced now, under warranty.

Steven Sande reports that you can enter the Terminal command:

ioreg -lw0 | grep \"EDID\" | sed "/[^<]*</s///" | xxd -p -r | strings -6

If the display code begins with “LP” it’s an LG display; the Samsung ones seem to work better.

Update (2012-09-20): Marco Arment:

I’m mildly annoyed, but as John Siracusa recently discussed in Hypercritical (starting at 16:49), getting it repaired or replaced always carries the risk that the likely-refurbished replacement might be a lemon in other ways. And I may need to get multiple replacements before finding one without image retention.

Update (2012-10-22): Unfortunately, Samsung will no longer be supplying Apple with LCDs.

Update (2014-06-01): Marco Arment notes that the image retention problem seems to get worse over time.


[...] See also my previous post on Retina MacBook Pro Burn-In. [...]

[...] Others have reported problems with the iPad mini’s color gamut. The screen may not be as nice as the iPad Air’s, but the colors look great to me. What I notice more is that when the room is dark, and I’m looking at a dark background, I can see that the backlight is uneven. I see the image retention problem, but it goes away after a few seconds. It’s nowhere near as bad as on the MacBook Pro. [...]

[…] is still going strong aside from the image retention problem. It definitely does not feel as slow at the 3.5-year mark as previous Macs I’ve had. Mainly, […]

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