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Glare & Screen Placement

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  • Glare & Screen Placement

    How important is screen placement for minimizing glare? I've seen pictures of a lot of different setups, and some seem like they'd be better than others in this respect. For example, I wasn't surprised to read that fluffy2097 had glare problems with his screen mounted high on the nearly-horizontal part of the dash (see this picture, this picture, and this page. Seems like you'd pick up light from just about anywhere with a screen mounted there.

    Drop-down mounts from the ceiling seem like they could be better, except of course when you're driving away from a setting or rising sun and maybe when snow reflects light everywhere (see freestyler's setup). Of course, this location generally prevents the use of touchscreens and, depending on the car, may be tougher to mount.

    Then there's those that put their screens low, in front of the shifter (osirisdon, Sigma_X). The problem I see here is that you want to angle the screen up towards the driver, which seems like it would catch more glare.

    And then there's the plain old smack-in-the-middle-of-the-dash install (gork, paulpv, DodgeCummins, traitorhound, and many others). When it's possible, this seems like the best option to me, because you don't have to look too far from the road to use it and yet it isn't angled to pick up that much glare. Gork and paulpv's setups seem to be particularly glare-resistant, with the beveled edges around their screens.

    All this is just based on what I've seen pictures of and read about - anyone care to share first-hand observations?

  • #2
    i have mine done where a shifter would be and it attacts a bit of glare. The way I fixed it was to tint my front windows. I've always wanted to do that anyway. I can see perfectly now even on a sunny day. My lcd is also 250nit.
    '98 Explorer Sport
    http://mp3car.zcentric.com (down atm)
    AMD 800mhz 192megs RAM 60gig hard drive 9 inch widescreen VGA
    80% done

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    • #3
      Anyway of applying some type of polarization filter over te screen? Seems like a quick fix =P

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      • #4
        Originally posted by mugu
        Anyway of applying some type of polarization filter over te screen? Seems like a quick fix =P
        I think 3M makes something like this.
        Aura MR62 (F and R)
        My Current MP3s
        IamDefiler.com

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        • #5
          WOW! you did your homework! Glad to see someone actualy looks at my setup.

          Yes the screen gets a lot of glare, and it can be a major pain in the ***. I've been trying to contact a local company to see if I can't get a "sample" of their anti glare film. If it work's It should greatly improve visibility of the screen in the sun.

          I find that Copilot has a high enough contrast that you can see it even with really bad glare, but trying to run something like media engine is pure hell.

          I'm also considering tinting my windows, but I've barely enough money to pay my bills right now, and I'd need to replace my front windows first as well.
          A digital mind lost in an analog world.

          Learn to ask smart questions!
          http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

          My car PC: The Lost Cause!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by hijinks21
            I can see perfectly now even on a sunny day. My lcd is also 250nit.
            If you can see perfectly with a 250-nit display, why is everyone making such a big deal out of the 400-nit Lilliputs? Do you need extra-dark tint to see the dimmer screen?

            Originally posted by mugu
            Anyway of applying some type of polarization filter over te screen?
            I think a polarization filter cuts out reflected beams of light that pass through it. If you put one in front of your LCD, it would still reflect sunlight bouncing off the filter. Some quick ASCII art:

            Code:
                         ---- screen
            
                         ---- filter
                          /\
                         /  \
                      eye   sun
            Maybe polarized sunglasses would be good though, because they're so close to your head that they don't pick up too many reflections. More fun with ASCII:

            Code:
                              ---- screen
                               /\
                              /  \
                sunglasses ----   \
                            /     sun
                           / 
                        eye
            Someone correct me if I'm wrong here.

            Okay, so there are other ways to prevent glare besides placement - tint and maybe polarization. But I still want to know how important placement is. Has anyone gone through a couple different screen locations and noticed a difference in glare?

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            • #7
              i just did a normal tint on my front windows and its been fine ever since. If you look you can faintly see me in the car so its nothing extreme or anything
              '98 Explorer Sport
              http://mp3car.zcentric.com (down atm)
              AMD 800mhz 192megs RAM 60gig hard drive 9 inch widescreen VGA
              80% done

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              • #8
                Originally posted by hijinks21
                i just did a normal tint on my front windows and its been fine ever since.
                So do you understand why Lilliputs are all the rage? Seems to me that you want the lowest brightness that you can get by with on a sunny day, so it isn't too overpowering at night (I know there's day and night ME themes and such, but there's just no need for a bright display at night).

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                • #9
                  Polarized sunglasses will not work with LCD screens. While they will cut out a fair amount of the glare, they make the screen itself nearly impossible to see. Remember, an LCD is just 2 plates of glass with goop inbetweent them. it bends the light in funny ways and a polarizing lense makes things even worse. If LCD's only had one layer of glass you might be able to do it, but not with 2. (My reasoning for this is purely pulled out of my *** from my knowledge of polarizing. what I know for sure is that polarized sunglasses don't help).

                  I'm not sure if anti glare film will work. I'll let you know when I get some.

                  While being able to see the display in the sun is important to me. Even with my backlight turned all the way down, I find my 250 nit display a bit bright. I've been considering making a small cover for the screen from a red gel, the colored filters that are used on stage lights, to help make it easier to see the road at night.
                  A digital mind lost in an analog world.

                  Learn to ask smart questions!
                  http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

                  My car PC: The Lost Cause!

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                  • #10
                    would that work? I have lighting gels all over the place. wouldnt mind having a use for it.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by fluffy2097
                      Polarized sunglasses will not work with LCD screens. While they will cut out a fair amount of the glare, they make the screen itself nearly impossible to see. Remember, an LCD is just 2 plates of glass with goop inbetweent them. it bends the light in funny ways and a polarizing lense makes things even worse. If LCD's only had one layer of glass you might be able to do it, but not with 2. (My reasoning for this is purely pulled out of my *** from my knowledge of polarizing. what I know for sure is that polarized sunglasses don't help).
                      You right. LCDs work by polarizing the backlight and the light transistors adjust the brightness of each so-called pixel by adjusting the polarization of the pixel (by twisting the polarization angle). Most sunglasses are polarized +45 degrees on one side and -45 degress on the other, similar to 3D glasses. So one eye might see the screen OK, but the other might not.

                      The last thing you want to do is add any polarizing between the LCD and your eyes (either by sunglasses or film on the lcd).

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by mugu
                        would that work? I have lighting gels all over the place. wouldnt mind having a use for it.
                        Tape one over the screen and go out and try some night. Theoreticaly it will shift the image towards the red end of the spectrum of light and make it easier to see past. Don't know if it will work in practice though.
                        A digital mind lost in an analog world.

                        Learn to ask smart questions!
                        http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

                        My car PC: The Lost Cause!

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