Eye Strain

Are any of you ID’ers experiencing eye strain? Since most of you may be frequent users of graphics packages, do you find them to be heavy for eyes? Do you get headache and pain at the end of your working day?

I would like to find out whether eye strain is a huge problem that affects other designers. I’m experiencing a lot of it. If it just affects myself and a small number of other people, I should invest a lot more time into my own eye care, rather than bore my tutors with complaints about eye straining interface of graphic software.

Only after I started using the new glossy LED mac monitors. I miss my matte one.

It’s definately a real issue. But before you complain about the software yourself you should make sure you’re doing things that reduce eye strain. Take periodic breaks, focus on something far away every few minutes to allow your eyes to readjust, and if necessary make sure you’ve been to an eye doctor to make sure you don’t need glasses. Also make sure you have lighting that is appropriate and not creating additional glare.

Lastly - make sure you’re only at the computer for reasonable periods of time. If you are sitting at your computer 20 hours a day eye strain is inevitable regardless of what you’re doing.

I’ve heard great things about Wacom Cintiqs, as some of these devices’ users told me that they get no eye strain at all when it comes to looking at them. However, it was just a couple of people who said this. Is Cintiq the best solution for eye strain reduction, or is it just a tiny bit less straining than a conventional LCD or OLED monitor?

It’s no different. Cintiqs are LCDs as well. There are no OLED monitors (not commonly anyway, they’d be effing expensive. It’s $3k for a 7" monitor). They’re not going to magically fix anything.

Turn on the lights, take breaks often, get new glasses.

Ive always felt like Cintiqs have the opposite effect on my eyes. Imo they arent sharp enough, and the slight blurry edges kill my eyes.
Obviously its the same with low quality/crappy monitors. Had a budget one that was one of the major reasons why my 20/2o was thrown out the window.

Disclaimer: I have no idea how old the 21" cintiqs I experienced that phenomenon on were.

Do you think using a Samsung 3dTV monitor for 3d CAD will solve the problem of eye strain slightly? Or will it make it worse?

I have never seen 3dTV, but I know that it has an enhanced 3d effect, which may relax the eyes a bit.

Complete opposite. Have you seen a 3d movie in theatres? It’s worse.

I agree with tangerine, I think a 3D tv will make things worse. I really hope this second (or is it the third?) coming of 3d movies will die just like this silly craze has done in the past.

Personally I don’t think the problem is due to the actual program you’re using (the GUI), but the fact that the human eye isn’t made to focus on a screen for a long period of time (same is true when it comes to reading on paper as well). But as someone said, I agree that looking at glossy screens make things worse. I’m very happy with my old, matte Cinema displays, but when they will need replacement I’m sorry to say I will look elsewhere, Apple… (the glossy screen on my macbook pro is good for nothing but watching movies in a dark room).

Do you have any known eye-deficiencies? My father has glaucoma, which raises the pressure inside his eyes. Its really noticeable at night because you get some really hardcore lensflares aroung lightsources. But to the point, it does also strain his eyes a lot, and he works in front of a computer 8 hours a day.
It is hereditary, so I’ll probably get it too, but nothing so far. (knock on wood)

But like I said earlier when you work with computers a lot your eyes could get to familiar with that range. An example is when NASA had a couple of astronauts simulate living in very closed quarters for an extensive period of time, and they all developed near sightedness if i recall it correctly.

Who? Me? Not that I know of , apart from being nearsighted (I have had my eyes re-checked recently). I don’t have huge problems, but do notice that spending a lot of time front of a screen can become tiring.

Sorry, it was meant for experiMental :slight_smile:

You could try f.lux, too. f.lux: software to make your life better

It changes the tone of your screen as weather/lighting changes so there’s less strain on your eye.

I have had eye strain, been looking at these…


just having a hard time putting down 100 on something I need to try on and have yet to do…

As part of my project for college, I have decided to tackle the issue of eye strain seriously.

Would you people be able to fill out a short 15 question long survey? It is split into two parts.
Here are the links to the survey:

Thank you for your input! This is all for a worthy cause.

I’ve had a few experiences with eyestrain and usually it is due to preexisting conditions, like sinus irritation or headache, that is exascerbated by staring at a monitor for hours a day.
Lately though, we have done a complete remodel of our office and the new, expensive, energy saving lighting is WAY too bright.
It is definitely hurting my eyes.

Eye strain is an issue for me, especially now that 90% of my work is done on the computer, from sketching, email, CAD, and news. I do not think most youngers designers are concerned as you don’t really notice it until you age a bit.

I am also 50 years old and have worn glasses since I was 8. For me the size of the screen and quality of the display are huge factors. I currently use 2 19" flat screens at work and one 22" flat screen at home. I also always have the lights on in my office, in which I use fluorescent lamps, 5000k correlated color temp and a 90 color rendering index. The only natural light comes in from across the hallway outside of my door. I have my walls painted satin white on the warm side.

I also keep my desk clear and walls simply adorned. This keeps my eyes from wandering and having to readjust constantly. I also attend meetings which helps, but there are times when I have to close my eyes for several minutes to remove the spots from the strain.

I personally find working in the dark makes things much worse on my eyes when using the computer.

I read that muscles play a big part in our sight and I presume that like all our other muscles , its generally a case of use 'em or lose 'em…


I would strongly suggest you proofread your surveys before sending it out. A couple questions are badly worded, have wrong types of responses, and one of the even has two questions combined into one.

To the original question:

“Yes, I do.”

It’s come to be a real pain in the ass. But I do not attribute it to software packages.
It is a function of “misbehaviour” against the human body.

A. Sitting in front of LCD Screens hour after hour.
B. Sleeping less and less because of A
C. Having too bright and direct lighting in the office.
D. Having too low air moisture in the office due to computers and printers running.
E. Having air con running in the car year in year out. (reducing moisture as well)
F. Sitting in airport lounges and jetliners unter even more aggressive air con.

And result: “red eye syndrome.”

As an immediate treatment I found this: Hylo commod artificial tear fluid, which doesn’t contain preserving agents.
A cure of 3 days calms my eyes down sufficiently.

What did I change:

A: Less unproductive Internet hours. Cutting down on “time waste central” :wink:
B: Trying to catch sleep before midnight.
C. Can’t change that at the moment as it is part of the architecture. Will change office when possible
D. Putting “real” plants instead of plastic ones. Opening the windows aggressively.
E. Switching off the air con in the car. Using a classic open roadster when the sun is out.
F. Using artificial tear fluid before flights.

But all that affects office clerks and managers in all “developed” societies. What makes it even worse for
designer types is the amount of dust that we eat when in the workshop. I have no idea how to change that…

yours mo-i