After several days of usage macbook pro late 2013 with retina display i have similar symptoms described above - vertigo, severe eye strain, nausea, eyes unfocusing. A also check several notebooks of other brands with led displays - same symptoms. Does anybody with same problem find appropriate notebook?
i don't think it's due to OS version. i think it due to hardware. or perhaps settings for the hardware, refresh, brightness, etc.
one thing worth doing is seeing if the trouble is from looking at the screen or EMFs. this is easy. place the screen where it would normally be. have it on just like normal. cover it with some dark non metal material like construction paper so you can't see it. make sure it stays on and doesn't power down during this. now wait (or read something) and see how you feel. if you feel fine it really is the visual part.
i think it's due mainly to PWM. that's a way to dim the back light by pulsing it on an off. try a full brightness setting as this should not pulse the back light. if that works you can search out DC back lights that dim without pulsing the light.
this is a good read. http://www.eizo.com/global/library/basics/eyestrain/
here is a flicker free database: http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/articles/flicker_free_database.htm
also good reads: http://www.conradbiologic.com/articles/SubliminalFlickerI.html
there are a few articles on this site worth reading. check out his articles page.
let us know what happens, ok?
I would try the 2014 MacBook Air. I have a an 11 inch and can use it for long periods of time with no problem. Mine has a Samsung display, which I believe may account for my ability to use it. I can also use the older gen 3 or 4 iPads, but not the 5 (Air), which has screens made by LG or Sharp if I'm correct. My wife has a MacBook Pro Retina 13 late 2013 with an LG display, which causes the symptoms use experience in a short time. It's not just display, however. If I plug my MacBook Air into an old CCFL Dell SW2409 via HDMI I get the nausea, eye strain. However I'm fine with the DVI output. It looks like the PWM frequencies may be different with either input, but I don't have an ocscilloscope to be sure.
TL;DR, give the MacBook Air 2014 a try, I'm very happy with mine.
I thought I would chime in on the issue.
I have also recently found that I can't tolerate LED backlit screens, while I had no problem with CCFL ones. It appears I can tolerate an iPad 4 though (even though my specific one has a yellow cast over it, which I guess helps, I also don't use it for extended periods of time).
I recently bought a Dell U2414H to replace my LG 245 (which was CCFL). Even though it is flicker free, it still makes my eyes really dry, causes me confusion and I have a burning sensation. With really (Really) low brightness, much lower than my old monitor, and with really strong settings on F.Lux, the usage is tolerable, but the colors look ridiculous.
I also can't seem to find a CCFL based monitor anymore, it seems every company has switched to LED by now. By doing some research (and reading most of this thread) I am currently theorizing that it has something to do with blue light (or near UV light). By looking around, I noticed that recent BenQ monitors have a low blue light function, which I am guessing more or less changes the color temperature (similar to what flux does, or what you can do with all OSDs on all monitors). But they are promoting it as having less eye fatigue.
Also Eizo has this: http://www.eizo.com/global/library/basics/eyestrain/#tab03 . Funny how they conclude that "LED backlights and CCFL backlights have about the same amount of blue light" when the diagram they show shows otherwise. (yes there is a much smaller peak for CCFLs as well, but it's also higher in the spectrum, which maybe means that it's less harmful/sickening as well?). Their "solution" is pretty terrible. It's basically the equivalent of install "F.Lux" and lower the brightness. I was expecting something more scientific, like they installed some sort of coating on their screens, to make the LED spectrum flatter. Instead their solution is, make the colors of the screen appear much warmer than they need to be.
But at the very least some companies are acknowledging that the light that comes from LED has problems. Even though their solutions are laughable.
But it makes me wonder, why did they move away from CCFL so swiftly, when LED has a gazillion problems (they only recently started solving the PWM flicker) and why aren't they producing CCFLs any more, if for nothing else, for variety's sake and for people like us to have an option when looking to buy a monitor.
Also, I just realised. That graph on the Eizo page is VERY flawed.
"Not all blue light is bad. The labeled blue-turquoise light range, which is from 465 nm to 495 nm, is essential to our vision, the function of our pupillary reflex, and in general to human health. It also helps to regulate our Circadian sleep/wake cycle."
465-495nm is where CCFL peaks and that is non harmful light. So if we just compare LED to CCFL at the actually harmful frequencies (bellow 465nm), we can see the LED clearly has a ton more of it, which makes that whole article from Eizo a lot more hypocritic than I thought.
I also have severe pain in my eyes from late 2013 13" retina macbook pro, After research I found out I should go back to technologies of 15 to 5 years ago, to get a relief, I can not handle such a misery. I hate this system of billion dollar companies that they only think about their profit, nothing else, maybe I should hate ignorant people that can't think about their own good or bad and should be dictated by billion dollar companies. If you read threads of forums of the year 2008 that LED backlighting was a new thing at that time, people swore by LED that this technology is like a printed paper, very very easy on eyes, etc. I was fooled by them not believing my eyes that where in pain by this new technology. I don't understand why e ink technology should be neglected to this extent, maybe because the profit is in addictive backlit gadgets that destroy our eyes. I am stuck to find a decent CCFL LCD or CRT.
are any of you having issues with a non PWM monitor where there is no flicker? like the ones listed here: http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/articles/flicker_free_database.htm
i'm taking a best guess approach when i purchase my new monitor. i'm getting something with no flicker on the back light and a high vertical refresh rate. if i can find one. also one with high native color so no color dithering. that's the best idea i have.
basically the idea is get something as close to sunlight as possible. smooth spectrum. SMOOTH. and continuous with no or little UV-ish stuff. both LED and Florescent have peaky spectrums and are so responsive to voltage they flicker. try to correct that best you can. Rrrrrrr!
I have tried 2 flicker free monitors from dell, a P2214h and the u2414h. The U2414h was better for my eyes but after some days the eye hurt again. This time i want to try a gaming monitor as the Benq xl2420z that is flicker free and have a higher refresh rate 144mhz. Did any of you have tried the Benq xl2420z? I have read all the pages from this topic but don't remember to read something about this monitor.
I'm curious to see how the higher refresh rate gaming monitors will work. I have had to stockpile old CCFL monitors as I haven't found any LED external displays that I can tolerate yet. I did have a Samsung LED TV with 120 Hz refresh rate that caused no problems, so this might work. Additionally some of the newer gaming laptops have higher refresh rates as well.
If flicker free monitors still bother you, I don't see how higher refresh rate will help.
If your symptoms are mainly eye burning/pain it is most probably the harsh blue light of the backlit Led that is bothering you.
It's absolutely 100% frustrating that it appears that asking for a monitor that doesn't hurt my eyes has become too much to ask. I guess we are in the minority on this issue, but seeing the popularity of this thread and also numerous mentions on other forums and sites, surely it can't be that rare. Also I don't think the rising popularity of things like F.Lux is a coincidence.
For me iPhone4 become usable again. I don't know whether due to the latest iOS, or just my eyes got adjusted. Also using it at a bigger distance to the eyes, but not always paying attention and consequences are not so bad .
Encouraged by this experience I dared to buy the iPhone5S. In the beginning there was some discomfort (had to stop after 30 mins or so), but now after approx. one month I can use it the same way as the iPhone 4 (2 or 3 hours of usage is no problem, maybe even more).
@mvanier: you had this adjustment theory, could you describe again how did you proceed and how are doing now? Still working for you?
(by the way I tried the new LG G3 with the quadHD display but was by far less comfortable than the iPhone5S. Maybe could get adjusted, but I didn't like the design as well, too much plastic)