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I found a computer screen dimming app

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#1 hwb3


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Posted 28 December 2013 - 01:04 AM

Hi all,

I want to make a little report on a utility I've just tried.

I've been wondering for years if there is some simpler way to dim my screen than by using a sheet of rubylith. Found it! (Or, I have begun to find it.) I downloaded a little utility--free--from http://www.nelsonpir...ftware/dimmer/. It works well, but washes out the contrast. I hope there are others out there, but having one is better than wrecking my night vision. I can turn it down quite dim, and still use Stellarium, barely. :thinking:

Clear, steady, and dark skies (none of which I have right now),


#2 Man in a Tub

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Posted 28 December 2013 - 02:23 AM

Try these freebies:

BackyardRED (Use the BackyardRED Tab):


And KnightVision:


Both were posted here within the past year or two.

Oh & BTW, Welcome to Cloudy Nights!

#3 HenryV1598



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Posted 10 January 2014 - 01:12 PM

The problem with these is that they still emit lots of multi-spectral light. They aren't AS harsh on your night vision, but they aren't all that great either.

I was out at my club's dark site one night helping someone out. he was using Backyard Red. From a distance, it just looked like he had his laptop on regularly, and when I got up close to it, it definitely didn't help my night vision.

I use plastic from estreetplastics.com. It cost me about $16 WITH shipping and provided enough for 3 laptops. About 15 minutes with a Dremmel is all I needed. I hold it in place with either large rubber bands or a couple small pieces of duct tape and it works out perfectly.

For my phone and tablet I use pieces of a sheet of a red theatrical lighting gel. It wasn't quite as cheap, but it works perfectly and is fairly durable. I've never actually used rubylith, so I can't comment on it, but the stuff I use is excellent.

If you're observing alone... it's only your own night vision you're messing with. But if you're with others, you really need the plastic.

#4 The Mighty Mo

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Posted 10 January 2014 - 01:24 PM

Forgive my confusion, and maybe it's just that I'm being too practical, but I don't understand the need for this app. Just about any monitor these days, desktop or laptop, has contrast and brightness controls users can adjust.

#5 hwb3


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Posted 03 March 2014 - 12:55 PM

Sir, you are quite correct. Every monitor does have controls that users can adjust--to a limited extent. These three little screen-dimming utilities dim it considerably more, but also lower the contrast to near-unusable levels. However Dimmer used in conjunction with Knight Vision seems the best set up, while Backyard Red does not sufficiently dim the display to avert the destruction of dark adaptation, as Todd observed above (Thanks for the info about various alternatives!), and corroborated by what I have experienced. I hope this clarifies why such utilities are indeed useful and practical. :)


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