MacBook Pro Retina Burn-in is “Normal” According to Apple

Do you own a new MacBook Pro with retina display? Depending on your luck, you are either owning the best laptop in the world for graphics production, or one of the worst laptops in the world.

My own MacBook Pro 15″ Retina has an issue where bright images displayed on the screen for a minute or two are still being shown when switching to a darker context. Examples include working on a bright Photoshop document and switching to a darker area, working on a bright keynote slide and switching to a darker one, or surfing the web and having a darker popup occur. In all these occasions the bright window (complete with images and text) will still appear clear and visible on the screen. This is how it looks like:

In the Apple forums, there are now a thread of 366 pages where graphic professionals are getting quite upset about owning one of the most expensive and at the same time one of the worst laptops for graphics production:

It appears that not all MacBook Pro screens have this issue, it seems to be a manufacturing error related to LG displays (apparantly Samsung manufactured displays do not have this issue) so people have now begun to return their laptops at an alarming rate, hoping that the replacement will be of another type.

To prevent these massive returns, Apple has now posted the following page on their support page:

Avoiding image persistence on Apple displays

“On an IPS display, when an image such as a login window is left on screen for a long period of time, you may temporarily see a faint remnant of the image even after a new image replaces it. This is referred to as “persistence,” “image retention,” or “ghosting.” This is normal behavior for an IPS display, and the faint image will disappear over time.”

“If you see a persistent image on your screen, you can use the screen saver to eliminate it”

Yes, you read that right: Apple is actually proposing that we are turning on our screen saver every single time we go from a bright image to a dark image while working with graphics on the retina screen.

Myself I have owned countless IPS displays the past 10 yars, and numerous IPS laptops (HP 8540w, Lenovo X230, to name just two the past year) and I have never, ever experienced burn-ins on any IPS display.

I have owned almost every single Apple laptop model since 2003 when I bought my first PowerBook, and this is my worst laptop experience yet from Apple. I have returned my retina MacBook Pro, and I am crossing my fingers that my replacement will have a Samsung screen.