[Nov 2013 Post Mavericks Update: Shades no longer works on Mavericks, but ShadeIt – available from the App Store – does the same job.  GN]

I use an Apple 24″ iMac.

imac-24-all-in-oneIt is an excellent computer for many reasons, the best Mac I’ve ever used.

But there are two problems – one big and one little. The iMac 24″ screen is just too bright, even on the very lowest setting. And if you have a light source behind you (such as a window), you can get reflections from the glossy screen.

It seems that more than a few people are reporting eye strain using this model. Some think it is the glare, but personally I put it down to the brightness of the screen.

There are several free Mac applications you can use to reduce the brightness of your screen:

  • Shades – once installed use Alt+ or Alt- to adjust the brightness of your screen (my favourite)
  • DarkAdapted – designed for astronomers and others who need to keep their eyes adapated to night vision while using a computer
  • Brightness Control

I’ve also ordered an anti-glare film – there are a few to choose from:

I’m not sure the anti-glare film is required, figured since I have a window behind me it isn’t a bad idea. But fixing the brightness is the big one.