TN = Less eyestrain?

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RedCloudFuneral
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TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by RedCloudFuneral » 02 Oct 2020, 01:45

I've noticed a trend in the monitors I've used where I have less fatigue viewing TN panels with both moving & static content; this is despite them having objectively worse picture quality and even more noticeable grain in some cases. This hit me the other day as I was doing maintenance on the family computer which uses a budget TN from 2008, I didn't feel an urge to look away whereas I do with most monitors I've used with my PC.

For reference I got into PCs with a budget TN myself & moved up from it after a 6yr life in 2016. I've been frequently swapping monitors since having owned 3 VAs(all curved,) 2 IPS, and one other TN. I distinctly recall upon booting up the TN for the first time that despite it being a VQ downgrade from my previous monitor something seemed 'right' about it. En fact it's the only monitor I've owned since the original TN that I hadn't felt the need to continuously tweak the OSD settings on. With the VA/IPS monitors I've owned something always seems off about the brightness, I can never find a setting I'm comfortable with either feeling like I'm staring into a light directly or squinting to see what's going on. I haven't had any sensitivity with OLED phone screens/VR headsets but do with IPS phones/VR.

Does anyone have any clue what I might be noticing? Could this be something other than panel type? The fact that it seems to relate to brightness has me wondering about a backlight related factor but that doesn't really make sense considering VA should be the most capable at blocking the backlight from shining through(hence the high contrast.)
I'm trying to figure this out now as the market seems to be phasing out >1080p TNs and I need something I can use longterm comfortably until FALD/OLED comes down in price.

Alpha
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by Alpha » 02 Oct 2020, 05:49

For work, I have a 3 monitor setup that have blue light filters maxed. Every monitor is pushed back almost two feet. When gaming, this is closer to 20 inches. Its definitely not good to be blasting high brightness for long periods of time regardless of panel types. It will always seem like it looks better but its a perception issue. Breaks, accurate brightness, reduces the risk of macular degeneration.

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RedCloudFuneral
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by RedCloudFuneral » 02 Oct 2020, 16:13

I agree, I'm generally running under 30% brightness. I use bias lighting too. I don't actually notice a difference in eyestrain modifying brightness(exempting extremes) so I just try and run it as low as I can without whites becoming greys.

I wish I could do easily tune the fatigue out. On a counter note I was playing with my parents TN and couldn't make it fatiguing even maxing the brightness.

Alpha
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by Alpha » 02 Oct 2020, 16:42

RedCloudFuneral wrote:
02 Oct 2020, 16:13
I agree, I'm generally running under 30% brightness. I use bias lighting too. I don't actually notice a difference in eyestrain modifying brightness(exempting extremes) so I just try and run it as low as I can without whites becoming greys.

I wish I could do easily tune the fatigue out. On a counter note I was playing with my parents TN and couldn't make it fatiguing even maxing the brightness.
Is it possible it just has lower NITS? I believe the biggest impact to eye strain is sitting too close. I did this for years. The change at first was odd but I got better as a result gaming.

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RedCloudFuneral
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by RedCloudFuneral » 02 Oct 2020, 18:11

I don't think so as I still fatigue on low brightness(say 10%.) And it's hard to see at that point which adds a different kind of strain.

Seating distance is a factor, I used to sit within 6-8" of the screen before I had PRK surgery, bad idea but it felt fine until I switched to IPS. Now I vary between 2-6' depending on where I sit. Yeah, it's less bothersome at the further distances but the screen doesn't fill enough of my FOV to make an enjoyable experience (with a 32" monitor.)

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Chief Blur Buster
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by Chief Blur Buster » 02 Oct 2020, 19:21

RedCloudFuneral wrote:
02 Oct 2020, 01:45
I've noticed a trend in the monitors I've used where I have less fatigue viewing TN panels with both moving & static content; this is despite them having objectively worse picture quality and even more noticeable grain in some cases. This hit me the other day as I was doing maintenance on the family computer which uses a budget TN from 2008, I didn't feel an urge to look away whereas I do with most monitors I've used with my PC.
Everyone sees differently.

While IPS usually has had less eyestrain than TN for most, there are many people who have less eyestrain with TN for different reasons:

- Extreme sensitivity to motionblur or ghosting; or
- Extreme sensitivity to excess color spectrum (wide gamut IPS/VA); or
- Extreme sensitivity to IPS artifacts like glow / their most common type of antiglare coating / etc;
- Extreme brightness range where minimum brightness is too bright; or
- Etc.

Occasionally, I am often bothered by the minimum brightness being too bright on many IPS panels, but I often fix that by enabling strobing (e.g. PureXP Extreme), when I'm in total darkness.

I really would like to see manufacturers expand the brightness range of their monitors; much like Apple does -- iPhones, iPads and Androids now includes extra-dim settings on their IPS monitors. If you have no eyestrain using smartphones or tablets at dim settings, then you may need to find an IPS monitor that has super-dim settings to their brightness range.

Clearly, some people are super-sensitive to specific aspects.

Being Blur Busters, I've heard it all -- motionblur eyestrain worse than flicker eyestrain, color eyestrain worse than viewing angle eyestrain, and whatnot, and all kinds of weird vision troubleshoots. Everybody has different vision sensitivities.
Head of Blur Busters - BlurBusters.com | TestUFO.com | Follow @BlurBusters on Twitter

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RedCloudFuneral
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by RedCloudFuneral » 02 Oct 2020, 20:14

What's the best place for learning about screen coatings? I hadn't considered that possibility and reflecting back(heh) it seems the screens I preferred have all been grainer/heavy-handed with the AG.
Not sure, I've been skimming DisplaySpecifications and everything I've owned is listed as AG: Antiglare/Matte. A couple specify 3H.. one I liked and one I didn't.

I have one outlier which may help find the answer: the Acer Z301C, a VA I was happy with for static content but returned due to motion sickness. I can't find anything unique about it which it would share with TNs; mostly it tells me I can enjoy high contrast, >sRGB, and curved displays. I wish I could find the mystery factor it shares with the LG 27GK750F & assortment of old TN office monitors I find easy on the eyes.

I don't think it's brightness in any traditional sense, I'm bothered by my new phone's IPS even on minimum settings and it's only usable when the sun's set(even indoors.)

rasmas
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by rasmas » 03 Oct 2020, 10:10

Some of the things you are commenting feel like the same that happens to me, like the fact that if a monitor gives eye strain is not related to max or lowest brightness.

I have tried several monitors and i was always more comfortable with an old (not too good) CRT.

Lately i've been using the 24" BenQ GL2480 (75Hz only on HDMI), i know is far from awesome 240hz, or even 144hz monitors but is the only one that i have been able to use BUT (big "but" :P ), i've been getting eye strain depending on the day; so sometimes is perfect on the eyes and sometimes is really annoying even making me a bit dizzy.

Why? my only conclusion is that is related with the natural light from outise coming throught windows, and it does not even matter if i try to get the lowest amount of natural light, if is a day with shi*ty light i get eye strain (and the light here often su*ks a lot!). But sometimes, if i leave some time and return later the screen is perfect and even sometimes i had my eyes "weird" not on the PC and sitting on it made them better.

Someone told me that monitors without FRC (i.e "8 bits (6 bits + FRC)") were better on his eyes (BenQ GL2480 has 8 bits without FRC it seems ), but not sure if that affects me, although, for me, first days with this monitor felt like i had no eye strain, although i could not see-focus on "whole screen" but i could look at the screen and away and i didn't have to "refocus" (by now this changed and i have to refocus a bit xD ), and while playing i "felt" it like the old CRT (although now sometimes if i try to focus while moving is not clear but the first impresion was that :P ), and input lag seems decent (although not sure how to test it but on games seems ok).

Sometimes once it's night i feel the screen looks much better that with daylight.

So, for me, i'm pretty sure the natural light is the culprit and somehow this monitor ""helps"" on bad days; maybe its screen coating or its "eye care technologies" (reason why i tried it, but i'm using just low blue light mode and i have "high" brightness at 50 and contrast at 45). Maybe new 240Hz models are the same but as this was decent (was close to returning it several times) i prefered to keep it (hopefully i won't regret although i would have prefered at least 144Hz).

Also, the colours are ugly as hell and on i.e. google searchs i could not notice "clicked" results from never opened (now i notice them :D ).


No idea about the reasons of why the CRT with same natural light was better (the same than maybe with Plasma or OLED, but i haven't tried).
Also i feel like old monitors (used a LCD for years until it broke and could not find a replacement) where somehow better on the eyes, and i'd like to know why and try some.


A bit off-topic but I was thinking on creating a thread with "Decent monitors for people with eye strain", and then share there which people have found, i think it could be a good start point for some :D .


Not sure if it can help you somehow but it won't hurt (i guess :P ).

Anyway, if you find anything, please share ;) .


EDIT: About screen coatings i was the same than you, i thought that maybe matte were hurting me (as CRT screens are "somehow glossy", not glossy like some monitors nowdays), and i tried to find a glossy, or semi glossy or the best (it seems) "Plasma Deposition Coating" (similar to CRTs). Found none and the Benq has matte coating (i find it pretty decent), so not sure if it could help; maybe if you have a friend with an old Plasma or an OLED you could try :) .

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RedCloudFuneral
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by RedCloudFuneral » 04 Oct 2020, 06:34

Ha, every days bad light for me because I've been living in the nocturne. This actually allows me to control quite well for the room light factor as I have 2 lights with fully configurable bulbs(brightness & color.) One is setup behind me 10ft back and the other directly under/behind my monitor back about a foot and partially obscured. I can't say my fatigue changes much unless I blind myself with the bias light or have the room light reflecting on the screen. I do notice blues/purples are superior for the bias light but its not critical.
Perhaps your solution is curtains + some of these TP-Link Kasa smartbulbs?

I really like the idea for a thread but we'd have to brainstorm how to avoid making the data too noisy, after all we all fatigue from different factors, I think we need to understand the fatigue well enough that people can identify which issue they'r heaving before giving out product reccomendations.


As further data-points I know I'm good with OLED, even highly discolored/aged displays. CRTs are hard on my eyes(based on a datasize of one old dusty monitor we have kicking around.) This does bring in the point that I used CRTs for most my life(ol' dusty included) and don't remember them looking quite so bad. I'm not sure I found any display fatiguing when I was younger. It may well be I triggered this fatigue with my PRK surgery in 2017 which would explain enjoying the Acer VA in 2016 and not being able to stand them now. I also may have enjoyed my Viewsonic IPS back then too, I sold that one recently so I may be remembering the 'after' and forgetting the 'before' if that makes sense.
Rasmas you may be a genius for bringing up CRTs, you got me thinking about things more about myself and what could have changed with me rather than blaming the monitors for everything.


@Chief, do you have any experience with people whose monitor needs changed after laser-based eye surgery? What are the chances that corneal imperfections would react differently to different types of panel? Now that I'm thinking about it this monitor fatigue is similar to issues I have had since the operation with bright sunlight, sunset, & headlights reflecting off objects at night(momentary loss in visual comprehension where I need to.. manually think? to understand what I'm looking at.) It also gave me ghost images of lights at night, I remember I saw that with text on monitors for a year or so after the surgery.
I'm going to try running my VA at lower contrast and see how it goes, I distinctly remember one eye doctor commenting on the issue in terms that it was due to 'high contrast' situations.

rasmas
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Re: TN = Less eyestrain?

Post by rasmas » 04 Oct 2020, 07:22

RedCloudFuneral wrote:
04 Oct 2020, 06:34
...Perhaps your solution is curtains + some of these TP-Link Kasa smartbulbs? ...
I've tried some things but at the end is the natural light, and even trying to make a "cave" :D , changed nothing.
RedCloudFuneral wrote:
04 Oct 2020, 06:34
...how to avoid making the data too noisy, after all we all fatigue from different factors...
As we all have fatigue or eye strain from different factors, i think that giving a starting point like "for me, this monitor is fine (or not horrible) on my eyes" can help others that are lost (often i wonder if i tried this monitor on the "right" time and maybe i could have gotten used -not sure if i'm with this yet xD- to any other, no idea).
RedCloudFuneral wrote:
04 Oct 2020, 06:34
...for bringing up CRTs, you got me thinking about things more about myself and what could have changed with me rather than blaming the monitors for everything.
On my old not-too-good CRT i can see the flickering and when i try it after having used something else, i don't feel it comfortable but i can get used to it pretty quick, maybe you could try yours a bit longer, just to see if you can get used to it.

In my opinion, i think is more related with the quality of the monitors than personal eye problems (with the CRT i have the same shi*ty light), but finding a good quality one is the hard part, as even +$500€ monitors have problems (even common like dead pixels).

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