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  • tfouto Level 1 Level 1

    I received my other kindle tonight, the old version with no light at all. i will probably sent the paperwhite version back to amazon...i will compare both...

  • Dovez Level 1 Level 1

    Just to be thurough you should research if any of the two devices use dithering. If the older one doesn't, then it's not a fair comparison.


    About dithering: tml

  • Dovez Level 1 Level 1

    You know whay you could try? Just open some completely white content on your paperwhite and look at it for a few minutes, which you said is enough to feel whether it is tolerable or not. No dothering is done with white content as far as I know.

  • Jessiah1 Level 1 Level 1

    Here's an excerpt from a medical paper I was just reading about Photophobia, it is interesting information and the whole paper is interesting if you have some time! It helps explain why those here who get migraines are more sensitive to the blue/white spectrum, the info below explains some of why there could be two distinct groups with different reactions to spectrum and flicker. Migraine sufferers probably are sensitive to both while some others who do not get migraines but do get eye irritation and normal headaches may be more sensitive to flicker for a different reason?


    The wavelength of light may also affect the photophobia percept. Main et al. (103) found that shorter wavelength (blue) light was more uncomfortable for subjects with migraine than for those with tension-type headache or controls. These investigators also reported that longer wavelength (red) light was also less comfortable for subjects with migraine (103). Good et al. (29) found that visually provoked beta brain activity was suppressed by red light and enhanced with blue light in migraine patients, showing that the two wavelengths have different effects on cortical activity. The reasons for this difference, and the noxious nature of both blue and red light to migraineurs, are unclear. The fact that intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells are preferentially sensitive to blue light is intriguing (83, 104).


    The link to the whole paper here:

  • Exandas Level 1 Level 1

    Yes that would be me. The cheaper kindle (without the backlight) gave me a strange eye strain while other brand older readers were fine.

    I remember that in some other forum a person had the same problem, and the explanation that was provided there by a participant, was dithering. Kindle does that in order to create additional grades of the gray color to show pictures in the Kindle. I remember that the person that made the complaint said that he/she used the previous model of Kindle with no problem.

    Unfortunately i cannot find the pages i was reading.

  • tfouto Level 1 Level 1

    But you still use the old kindle, or the new kindle?


    Is that strange eye strain from kindle the same then the eye strain LED gives?


    Both kindles to me are note perfect. They dont have enough contrast, they need to much light. A book has a lighter white(page). The new one, the letters are more fuzzy. A book is way, way better. I am trying to understand if the old kindle is good enough to keep.

  • Exandas Level 1 Level 1

    I dont use a reader at the moment. I have used  the Kindle without backlight which i purchased in Oct 13 and returned it due to eye strain.


    Previously i owned an old Sony reader which was great, i didn't any experience any problems with it.

  • Jessiah1 Level 1 Level 1

    Here is another section of the Photophobia report worth sharing, they speak about tinted lens's and why a certain tint called "Fl-41" (Just rose colored tint for the most part) was helpful in reducing migraine frequency when patients were exposed to fluorescent lighting. If anyone here is getting vertigo and migraines from LED/Fluorescent lighting this information points to spectrum being the most dominant culprit. There are sections in this article about dry eye's and normal headaches resulting from photophobia as well, it is a very informative read prepared by Doctors and based on medical science.


    One principal treatment is to decrease the dark adapted state. Patients with severe photophobia who wear darkly tinted lenses should be encouraged to reduce dark adaptation. Chronic darkness will increase the perception and pain of light sensitivity. Lebensohn (5) cautioned that “tinted glasses as a symptomatic remedy for chronic photophobia are to be condemned because of both their ineffectiveness and their habit forming tendency”. Wearing sunglasses to an eye clinic has led many physicians to consider the patient to have some type of psychiatric disorder, or at least to predict nonorganic visual loss (118, 119).

    Some optical tints have been tried successfully to combat photophobia. Red-tinted contact lenses have been tested in individuals with photophobia due to cone disorders (120124). However, red tint appears to exacerbate migraine-associated photophobia (103).

    Sunglasses do make sense in the bright sunlight for patients with migraine, tension type headaches and those with light sensitivity. Some tints have been successful in migraine. Good et al. (29) found that FL-41 tint, a rose-colored tint, reduced migraine frequency in children by over one-half. Subjects reported a decrease in photophobia and glare in between attacks, but no change in the light sensitivity associated with the migraine attack. FL-41 tint filters 80% of short wavelength 50 or 60 Hz flicker that is seen with fluorescent lights. As flicker stimuli can be particularly noxious to patients with migraine (125), the authors reasoned that flicker reduction contributed to the reduction in headaches.

    We studied FL-41 tinted lenses and found that they increased the threshold to discomfort in all subjects (controls, migraineurs, and patients with blepharospasm), but they did not differ from gray tinted lenses in reducing light sensitivity (44). To test whether patients preferred FL-41 tint over gray tinted spectacles, we performed a double cross-over study of subjects with blepharospasm using Gray and FL-41 tint. Patients preferred FL-41 tint over gray spectacles and patients felt that FL-41 significantly reduced their symptoms (70). We also tested the blink reflexes of patients who wore FL-41 tint or placebo pink lenses while reading under a standardized light source. We found that in blepharospasm patients, FL-41 tint greatly reduced the number of blinks and intensity of blinks (70).

    Studies using fMRI suggest that there may be different physiological responses to spectrally-specific tints compared to neutral density filtering (which attenuates all wavelengths equally. Huang et al. (126) used precision ophthalmic tints that normalized cortical activation on fMRI, whereas gray lenses did not in patients with migraine. Why would red or pink tinted lenses show this effect? Red tints tend to block blue wavelengths, which more likely may induce photophobia (103).

    No mention of yellow tint, I need to research further why yellow tint is not mentioned.



  • Jessiah1 Level 1 Level 1

    Another interesting point here would be how an incandescent light bulb is dominantly red spectrum, interesting.


    Also, just in case you are wondering I tried the FL-41 tint and by itself I found it slightly helpful with fluorescent light sensitivity and not at all with LED. However, when Crizal anti-glare coating is added to the tinted lenses it is much more effective, in fact Crizal anti-glare coating by itself seems to be just as effective as the tint. Anti-glare coatings are often applied to lens's these days and now I question if the studies have been done with anti-glare/FL-41 or just the FL-41 by itself? It poses the question of what was really making the difference?

  • Jessiah1 Level 1 Level 1

    I need to correct one thing about above statement: I meant to say the anti-glare coating is much more effective than the FL-41 tint if you were to use them separately.



  • Petmyfurlistentomepurr Level 1 Level 1

    I was just wondering besides turning the brightness to max Is there anything else you can do to an LED screen to make It not flicker as much? I know you could just smash It and buy a flicker free one but It's at my work and I have no choice but to use It thanks:)

  • tfouto Level 1 Level 1



    "As the widespread use of smartphones, tablet devices and computers increases the time we face a screen, more and more people suffer from eyestrain symptoms. One cause of this is believed to be the blue light emitted from the display on such devices.

    The shorter the wavelength, the stronger energy a light wave has, and this may cause eye fatigue. Blue light, which is next to ultraviolet light on the electromagnetic spectrum, has a shorter wavelength than other visible light. It also tends to be diffused and is believed to cause flickering in the vision."


    I dont understand the relation of blue-light how to tends to be diffused and causing flickering...  I dont know if it's just propaganda...

  • peter_watt Level 3 Level 3

    There is a lot of pseudo-science being put forward on here about blue light.

  • Jessiah1 Level 1 Level 1

    Here is some hard science, references in this paper are from Dr.'s performing experiments with Blue light and it's effects on animal retina's including Ape's which have very similar eye's to humans. There is plenty of evidence about the adverse effects of blue light however because it can take years for these effects to be obvious many of us may not even contribute vision problems to the global increase in blue light but chalk it up to life. This is a complicated subject, there have been many studies performed on the effects of blue light. I have not read anything that points to it being the primary cause of everyone's issue on this forum, there are no facts or clear studies on eye strain related to blue light. However, when reading about Migraine there is plenty of scientific evidence people with Migraine are the most sensitive to blue/white light. If you do not have migraine then your only concern is maintaining healthy vision into your older age and blue blocking lens's can help with that.


    The Effects of Blue Light on Ocular Health

    Elaine Kitchel, M.Ed.

    American Printing House for the Blind


    Why should we care about blue light?

    For years now, professionals in the fields of light energy and vision have known about the hazards ultraviolet (UV) light presents to ocular health. We are gradually having longer and more intense exposures to blue light; much of the world of commercial display and industry is lit with cool white fluorescent tubes which emit a strong spike of light in the blue and ultraviolet ranges. Indeed many homes and offices are lit with cool white fluorescent tubes. No one doubts more people are spending time in front of video display terminals (VDTs) which produce blue light. While some people find blue light irritates their eyes or causes headache, most are able to ignore it. Scientists only now are beginning to investigate its long‑term effects and offer some solutions for maintaining ocular health in the presence of blue light.


    What is blue light?

    Experts differ as to the exact wavelength of UV light waves, but generally speaking, UV light is defined as that part of the invisible spectrum which ranges from 380nm to 200nm. (Nm stands for nanometer which is one billionth of a meter.) This part of the spectrum is divided into UV‑A, (380nm to 315nm), UV‑B, (314nm to 280nm,) and UV‑C (279 to 200nm.)

      UV‑C, the shortest wavelength for purposes of this report, is virtually absent from ordinary lamps, blacklight and sunlight within the earth's atmosphere. It is largely germicidal in nature and is used by dentists and in industry for sterilization purposes. One of the primary benefits of the ozone layer is that it filters out virtually all of UV‑C. However, UV‑B and UV‑A do manage to enter our atmosphere where UV‑B and to some degree UV‑A, have been implicated in the formation of skin cancers and cataracts and in the degeneration of retinal tissue. (Van der Leun and Gruijl, 1993). UV‑A is particularly plentiful in the light emitted from black light bulbs, so popular in "sensory stimulation" activities. However, until recently, little was said about near UV, or "blue light" and its effects upon the eye. Blue light is that light with wavelengths in the 500nm to 381nm range. Both blue light and UV‑A are sometimes referred to as "near UV," but for purposes of this report, "near UV" refers to blue light.


    What about "black light?"

    Of special concern is the blue light given off by "black light" tubes and bulbs. These are glass tubes/bulbs coated with special phosphors on the inside surface. When the gas in the tube is excited by an electrical current, it glows; when the light passes through the coated glass, only the wavelengths in the UV‑A and blue light range are emitted. When viewed under black light, many objects fluoresce. This fluorescence is deemed desirable by party‑goers, artists and even educators.


    In 1980 the team of Poland and Doebler used black light to test eye‑contact training with children who had cerebral palsy. They found  the subjects performed better under black light than under ordinary room light. In 1983 these findings were again supported by Potenski in a similar experiment with multiply handicapped, deaf‑blind children. The conclusion was that severely brain‑damaged children seemed better able to use their vision when only the task was highlighted and the rest of the environment lay in darkness. Neither study remarked about any safeguards employed to protect the practitioner or the students from the effects of UV‑A or blue light emitted by the black‑light tube. Further, neither study employed a control group which performed the same tasks in a dark room under an ordinary spot lamp, for comparison.


    Review of Literature

    Retinal Damage

    In an early study conducted by Ham, Ruffolo, Mueller and Guerry, (1980) rhesus monkeys were exposed to high‑intensity blue light at 441nm for a duration of 1000 seconds. Two days later lesions were formed in the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE.) These lesions consisted of an "inflammatory reaction accompanied with clumping of melanosomes and some macrophage invasion with engulfment of melanosomes which produce hypopigmentation of the RPE" (Ham et al., 1980, p.1110). Since melanin, a common pigment component present in the RPE, strongly absorbs blue light, there is reason to be concerned that the retina is subject to actinic injury from blue light. However, the lens strongly absorbs blue light as well but runs a high risk of possible opacification.


    Human studies have not been conducted due to the obvious ethical problems involved in deliberately subjecting humans to potentially hazardous conditions. However, Taylor et al., found an association between cataract formation and exposure to UV-B when he studied 838 watermen who worked on Chesapeake Bay. He was not, however looking for a link between near UV and retinal or lens cell anomaly. The closest studies available are ones which use animals. Among researchers and scientists who have studied blue light, many are of the opinion that blue light might be a hazard and precautions would be wise. Some researchers are more certain: Ham et al., after conducting studies on animals, suggested "long term, chronic exposure to short wavelength light is a strong contributing factor to senile macular degeneration" (p. 1110).


    In 1992, Chen, a researcher at St. Erik's Eye Hospital in Sweden, sought to explore the basis to explain why blue light reactions cause retinal degeneration. Drawing on the research of E. L. Paulter, Morika and Beenley (1989), who found that a chemical chemical called cytochrome oxidase is a key enzyme in the respiration of the retina in higher mammals, Chen decided to investigate this phenomenon in rats. Cytochrome oxidase is found in the RPE and in the inner segment of the photoreceptors. Paulter's in vitro studies of bovine REP tissue showed that blue‑light exposure destroyed cytochrome oxidase and inhibited cellular respiration. This inhibition was followed by retinal degeneration. Chen then performed a similar experiment upon rats in which he exposed them to 15 minutes of 404nm blue light which was not strong enough to cause thermal damage. He then killed some rats immediately, and one for each of the next three days. Upon examining their retinas, he found the blue light exposure had indeed inhibited the production of cytochrome oxidase. This was evident in his observation of the photoreceptor cells which had been destroyed. He concluded

    “inhibition of cytochrome oxidase by blue‑light exposure and the consequent  suppression of the cellular metabolism is a potential cause of retinal degeneration” (1993, p. 422).


    One might argue that results in laboratory rats are not necessarily indicative of human results. For this reason, primate research often follows other mammalian research. In 1980 the group of Sperling, Johnson and Harwerth irradiated the retinas of baboons and rhesus monkeys with blue light. The eye tissues of these primates are very similar to those of humans. In addition to color blindness in the blue‑to‑green range, Sperling et al. found

                            “extensive damage in the RPE resulting from absorption of energy  by the melanin granules. It should be pointed out that the damage seen

    . . . including macrophagic activity, disrupted cells and plaque formation, is characteristic of that seen by Ham et al. (1978), and others in what he calls the photochemical lesion.”


    In light of findings like these, ophthalmologists are beginning to filter the blue light emitted from their ophthalmoscopes through a yellow lens. A study by Bradnam, Montgomery, Moseley and Dutton concluded: "This study has shown that the use of a yellow lens is very effective at reducing the blue‑light hazard and extends the safe operating period by a factor of approximately 20x. . . In the interests of patient safety, it is recommended that yellow lenses are considered for use for routine indirect ophthalmoscopy" (1994, p. 799).


    Lens Damage     

    After some yellowing, by the age of 20, the lens becomes a natural, though imperfect, absorber of wavelengths between 400 and 320nm. It helps protect the retina from damage by near UV radiation. The lens also provides partial but imperfect protection to  the retina from blue light. In early studies it was thought that UV‑B was the only wavelength band responsible for cataracts. However

                            “Most authorities now believe that the near UV radiation absorbed  throughout life by the lens is a contributing factor to aging and senile cataract. Thus, by protecting the retina from near UV radiation, the lens may become cataractous. My own personal opinion is that both the retina and the lens should be protected throughout life from both blue light and near UV radiation. This would delay the onset of senescence in both lens and retina (senile cataract and senile macular degeneration)” ,(Ham, 1983, p. 101).


    Youths under the age of 20, and especially very young children, have little or no yellowing of the lens. Therefore any UV or blue light which enters the eye is unfiltered and strikes the retina at full‑strength exposing not only the retina, but the lens to damage.  Nancy Quinn, a registered nurse and an expert on blue light emissions from VDTs wrote:

    “Blue light wavelengths and part of the blue spectrum are focused in front of the retina, while green and yellow are focused on the retina, and some red spectrum is focused behind. Thus blue light contributes little to visual acuity and visual perception loses sharpness as the blue light component adds significantly to the eye's energy expenditure for focusing, and if reduced can greatly reduce eyestrain without loss of acuity.

    There is mounting medical evidence that prolonged exposure to blue light  may permanently damage the eyes, contribute to the formation of cataracts and to the destruction of cells in the center of the retina (1995).


    What can be done?

    Ham et al. (1980) and Gorgels and van Norren (1995) pointed out that actinic, or photochemical damage to retinal tissue, is more a function of wavelength than either intensity or duration. Gorgels and van Norren, after examining rat retinas damaged by blue light, wrote "duration had no influence on damage threshold dose, nor on morphology. We conclude that wavelength (and neither irradiance nor duration) is the factor responsible for the encountered morphological differences"(p.859).


    These studies suggest neither the human cornea nor lens provides sufficient protection from blue light for our modern environment. Our ancestors did not have to deal with many hours under cool white fluorescent light, nor did they spend any time looking at video display terminals at close range. Our eyes' natural filters do not provide sufficient protection from the sunlight, let alone blue light emitted by these devices nor from the blue light emitted from black‑light tubes.


    As a feature of their molecular structure, many plastics have the ability to filter out UV‑A and UV‑B light. Clear polycarbonate spectacles are now available which are labeled "filters 100% UV." Clear plastic, however, will not filter out blue light. In order to accomplish this, the filter must be tinted. Yellow is the preferred color because it allows  the best contrast for the most people while still offering UV and blue light protection. Bradnam, (1994) showed the yellow lens to be very effective in protecting the retinas of their patients who were being exposed to blue light during ophthalmoscopy. In the case of black light activities, yellow is the only color which gives adequate blue light and UV protection, under which fluorescent materials will still appear to fluoresce. Both Solar Shield and NoIR produce a yellow lens which filters out 100% UV and 100% blue light. Filters should always be between the light source and the eyes. For this reason, visors or spectacles work best. Acetate sheets, which are often used, offer little or no protection from blue light.


    The blue light factor should be of maximum importance to persons working with young children and with individuals who may have albinism, aphakia, achromatopsia, coloboma, sub-luxated lenses and other conditions in which the light reaching the retina is unfiltered, or causes extreme light sensitivity. Professionals in the field of vision would profit by, at the very least, employing proper filtering precautions and limits of exposure to both subject and practitioner, when using black light and other sources of blue light during sensory stimulation, and visual training activities.

  • ElleAle Level 1 Level 1

    I don't know how to just make a post, so I am doing so in reply to yours, Jessiah1, although unrelated to the blue litght... (btw, I did install f.lux on my old Thinkpad and feel much better. THANK YOU!!)


    It has been mentioned here before that EMF sensetivity can contribute the eye strain. This is DEFINETLY the case with me, with relation to intolerance to iPad retina and rMBP...


    I have given up on all Apple products. Am about to order a Thinkpad t440s with matte FHD IPS display


    Lenovo now offers Intel Dual Ban Wireless-AC 7260... I still have an option of ordering ThinkPad Wireless 2 x 2 BGN.  

    Has anybody noticed theire discomfort increase with shifting to more powerful wireless cards?


    Thank you,