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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Imac Headache/Migraine/ Eye Strain


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Ableton Love

 
Member Since: Dec 21, 2010
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I recently got an imac 27 inch. I was using the same size PC monitor. Since the imac I have terrible headaches that start behind my eyes. I first thought it was the screen glare so I removed the outer pane and this helped a bit by cutting light glare from the shine about 50%. I also messed with the brightness and color but I was unable to stop the headaches.

So I simply went back to using my PC. The headaches disappear when I do this. I sometimes check email on my imac and I can feel my headache begin within a few minutes.

Maybe I will buy an LCD monitor to hook to my imac so that I can get some use out of it.

Anyone else experience this?
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chscag

 
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You probably should have your eyes examined by an Ophthalmologist who can check for excessive eye pressure and other eye ailments. Perhaps your eyes are just over sensitive but you never know.
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EndlessMac

 
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In addition to getting your eyes checked you should try and figure out what is the difference between your Mac and Windows machine. The 3 most common culprits are brightness (too bright), glare/reflections, and small fonts (too high of a resolution). You're not the first I've read who have complained about the 27" iMac causing eye problems. It's something people forget to consider when buying a computer.

My MacBook Pro was also kind of annoying to look at for long periods until I found a position on my desk that didn't produce a lot of glare. I also turned down the brightness to about half and increased the font size in every application that allowed me. That solved the problem for me. I'm also not old and I have health eyes and like you using another computer solved the problem so I doubt it was my eyes. If you spend a lot of time in front of the monitor for work and other things then a good screen becomes very important. In my opinion Apple's new monitors are biased more towards prettiness than functionality.

I believe the iMac can use a second monitor so I suggest finding one that works for you. Try to get one that has similar specifications as your Windows monitor since that doesn't give you problems. If it has the right connections you might want to try hooking it to your iMac.
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osxx

 
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I would go with chscag's suggestion never heard of this.
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EndlessMac

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osxx View Post
...never heard of this.
I've heard about people getting eye pains when using the 27" partly do to the extremely small fonts or a combination of the things I have already mentioned. Although not quite to the extreme of the OP.

I do find it rather too coincidental that the pain goes away when he uses his Windows computer and it seems that reducing the glare helped somewhat as the OP has stated.

When I first got my MBP I had some mild eye discomforts too but that went away by doing the fixes that I mentioned in my last post. The OP should definitely see the eye doctor to make sure everything is okay as a precaution though.
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Buzzard2010

 
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General rule of thumb - Sit at least the screen size away from your computer i.e keep your head at least 27" away from it.

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chas_m

 
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Glare should not be an issue unless you are using the computer outdoors or in an environment where you cannot control the lighting.

For the past 20+ years, I've lit my computer room with free-standing "Torchiere" type lamps and pointed the screen away from windows. No glare, no eye strain, no headaches.

It's a lot easier than removing parts of the computer (and more effective), and doesn't void the warranty.
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Ableton Love

 
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As a reply to you guys, it is not my eyes. I am good to go on any computer or TV at any distance away in the dark or bright light. It was never an issue until the Imac and still is not for anything else.
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chscag

 
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Don't know what to tell you.... If the iMac 27" is causing those symptoms, it may be time to sell it and get something else.
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osxx

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ableton Love View Post
As a reply to you guys, it is not my eyes. I am good to go on any computer or TV at any distance away in the dark or bright light. It was never an issue until the Imac and still is not for anything else.
Do you realize that to make a statement that only an iMac's display bothers your eyes and stating no other displays bother your eyes seems odd and these
mfg's buy their panels from other mfg's. http://www.anandtech.com/show/2440
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ClockworkWorld

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ableton Love View Post
As a reply to you guys, it is not my eyes. I am good to go on any computer or TV at any distance away in the dark or bright light. It was never an issue until the Imac and still is not for anything else.
As was already said, it seems to be all about the distance from the screen, at least in my case it was. I have had large displays before, and there is NOTHING necessarily unique about the iMac's display (as someone else already posted) they buy their equipment from people who make equipment for other manufacturers. But when I first got my iMac, I had it about where my old computer was, which was much too close. After rearranging things a bit, it's about 30 inches or so from my head, and I've yet to have any headaches or eye pains since.

You've probably already tried that, but it worked for me. I really didn't believe that would be the solution. But coming from anything 21 inches or less (my old screen was 21 inches) the 27 iMac is MASSIVE and very hi res, actually higher definition than "hi-def"... So, you really need to make sure you're sitting at a proper angle from it, at a proper distance. (But, like i said you've probably already tried that, naturally. ) But outside that, I don't know of anything that could cause the problem... The way their display is made is really not unique at all. It's applied in a gorgeous way, but the nuts and bolts of it are the same as far as I know of multiple others...
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class77

 
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I had a problem with my 24" iMac when it was new because of the brightness and the size. I turned the brightness down a lot and pushed it away from me. It's now about 22" away from my face and no more eye strain

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mhknee

 
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I got the same problem: headaches ever since I bought a 21" iMac. Never had the problem with my Airbook. It's not just a simple headache. It goes right through my brain, like frying it. I can feel several parts of my brain really hurting, especially in the back of my head. Not behind my eyes. My wife reported the same issue after working on the new iMac for a while. Neither her nor I have regular headaches. She had most pain on the back of her head too. I don't think that has anything to do with eyestrain.
This is the reason that I got on these forums.
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Thymen

 
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I bought a Vesa panel adapter, and put my iMac on a standard screen console. This way it is lower by several inches then with the standard stand. My eyes are now at about the same level as the top of the screen. For me, it helps in avoiding neck strain and subsequent headaches.

Apple should really do something about screen font size. At the standard resolution, they are simply too small for people my age (mid 50) and older. I already use special computer glasses, but still menu fonts cannot be read with ease. For web browsing it is not too much of a problem, but had I known before that using applications like Word or Pages on the iMac would cause so much strain on my eyes due to peering at the small menus, I would never have bought it. I would have put my money towards buying a decent workstation running Windows.

Should have known; except for in top management, Apple does not employ developers over 40, so I have been told, maybe that is why Apple is not empathic toward it's older customers. Design prevails over ergonomics. I guess.

Screen font size is my biggest gripe with the iMac. Unless Apple solves this issue with future systems, it is the first but also the last Mac I will ever buy....

Thymen
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mhknee

 
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Thymen,

That is really easy to resolve. When you get on a page or site, just do 'command' +, that will make your font sizes bigger ( and command - to make them smaller), do it a couple of times and you will be able to read very easily. I am 59 and don't have any problems with that. It's just the headaches, probably from the brightness. I'm trying out to lower that right now.

Mhknee
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