Do you suffer with a blurry MacBook screen? Solve it!

The one thing on your MacBook or iMac that you use the most is the screen and if the display is not up to scratch you will suffer irritation, eyestrain and maybe even headaches. Sort it out with these tweaks.

Font smoothing

Problems with the display are most noticeable when looking at the text and there is a lot of it - menus, apps, documents, web pages and so on. A lot of your time is spent looking at text on the screen so it had better be good.

Go to the Apple menu and select System Preferences. Click the General icon and down at the bottom of the window is Use LCD font smoothing. It can be on or it can be off and there is no right or wrong setting because it is down to whatever suits you best.

LCD font smoothing on the Apple Mac

You will not see anything when you turn this option on or off because you have to log out of your account and log back in or restart the Mac to see the change. On my non-retina MacBook it makes text extra bold and I prefer LCD font smoothing off. It is just personal preference and if you have a retina display you may find the effect different to a non-retina display.

LCD font smoothing on the Apple Mac
Normal on the left, LCD smoothing on the right. The difference is greater in real life

Try it both ways, logging in and out, and see the difference.

Reduce transparency

I cannot see the advantage of transparency effects in OS X and to my eyes it just makes things harder to see, especially text. Turn it off and everything is easier to see and text is more readable.

Go to System preferences and click the Accessibility icon. Select Display on the left and tick the Reduce transparency box on the right. If the effect is not immediately seen, log out and log back in to your account.

Reduce transparency effects in OS X

Increase contrast

Also in Accessibility is Increase contrast. Many pale greys and whites are used in the Mac user interface and this turns up the contrast making darker greys even darker. Tick the box and the effect is instantaneous.

Increase contrast in OS X
The difference is greater in real life

If you have poor vision it might help you to see interface elements. I find it a bit too strong and wish there was a milder, more subtle increase in contrast. Try the Mac with this setting and off and see which you prefer.

Get a bigger mouse

Back in the early days of laptops and LCD screens the mouse would become invisible whenever you moved it. These days the screens are much better, but there may still be times when you cannot find the mouse. Sometimes it just seems to disappear for a few seconds and you wiggle your finger over the trackpad to try and find it.

A bigger mouse pointer can help make the cursor more easily seen and less likely to hide. In the Accessibility settings again, drag the Cursor size slider to the right to increase the mouse pointer size. The effect is instantaneous.

With these tweaks you Mac’s screen should be easier on the eyes and they will not get as tired when working for long periods at the computer. Breaks are still important though, so look out of the window every now and then, get up and walk around and stretch your legs.



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