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Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Guys… You’re all missing the obvious. I have an old style iPod, and dependng on under what lighting conditions I view it, the LCD screen goes from as ble as you are reporting to stark white. Same with pictures of it using different white balances on my digital cameras.

What I’m saying is that this whole debate is over nothing but how colors are viewed under different lighting conditions by different people’s eyes. If the old iPod can look as striking blue under the right lighting conditions, then it is clear that the same phenomenon is happening with the new ones.

Posted by Devolution on May 20, 2003 at 9:27 AM (CDT)

Online Petition for Firmware Updates for Classic iPods

I don’t know how many of you people use the forums, but take a look there.  There’s been loads of posts in one firmware-related topic.

My two cents?  This is a software update, not a hardware update.  It’d be like Apple releasing the new 970-based Powermacs bundled with Panther, and then announcing that Panther wouldn’t work with the G4 chip. 

If you don’t like the petition, don’t sign it - the less signatures it gets, the less credible it’s going to be.  But it’s got loads so far, so it must be speaking for a lot of people.

Posted by Tim on May 20, 2003 at 9:21 AM (CDT)

AAC vs. MP3: Tested and Rated Part 2

Wait a minute.  Gunnar compares iTunes and Quicktime AAC against each other.  Don’t they use the same codec?  I don’t iTunes can encode AAC *without* Quicktime.

Posted by san on May 20, 2003 at 8:59 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

You can see that the blue/white color balance is a photography artifact between these shots.  The color red is less blue in the ‘white’ shot as well. I have a feeling if you corrected for the red LEDs to be the same color, you would see backlights the same color.

Until a photo is posted with BOTH the apparent variations in screens in the same shot, the discussion is moot.

Posted by thumbtwidller on May 20, 2003 at 8:08 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

This is just a Wild Ass Guess, but maybe Apple had a bunch of old iPod screens in inventory that they used in the new iPods. Now that the old inventory is gone they’re putting in a different screen & backlight. Or maybe it’s just a slightly different light…

I’d love for Apple to use Indiglo in the iPod. When that came out originally I couldn’t wait for my old watch to die so I could get one with Indiglo.

Posted by MostlyHarmless on May 20, 2003 at 7:42 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Hey Trunks - I’ve got nothing but (annoying) fluorescent lights in my office. Now, I never reallly noticed the tint of my backlight until I read this article. After some careful examination of viewing the screen in fluorescent light vs. natural ambient light (sunlight, if you prefer =)  I can definitely attest to the fact that it DOES look bluish under the fluorescent lights! Not SUPER blue, but pretty damn close to the blue in the picture. When under ambient natural light, though, it’s not exactly white - mine is somewhere between the color of the ‘blue’ pic and the ‘white’ pic. Interesting.

Posted by Justin D on May 20, 2003 at 7:23 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

By god! the body of the iPod in the lower photo is black!  Mine is white! What’s going on here!

Don’t be daft - there are not two versions of the iPod out there; at the very most there are two versions of the backlight, easily attributable to a difference in the white LEDs used to light it.  It’s just as likely that most of the difference is from white balance in the cameras used - most digital cameras using automatic white balance go really wonky in low-light situations.

If you want to say it’s a case of “misleading marketing” I’d say to you “caveat emptor”.  Then, since I’m feeling pedantic, I’d give you a lecture about needlessly multiplying entities and how to apply Ockham’s Razor.

Posted by Matt in UK on May 20, 2003 at 6:41 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Nick - funny you should use that anology of insurance fraud.  It’s very similar to if you buy a blue car and get a white one, do you complain or sit there and shut up?  I for one am bothered.  I was also under the impression that the backlight was suppsoed to be blue as that is how it looked everywhere I saw it, on tv, on apple’s website, on the box.  The fact remains that as a consumer, I have every right to complain about the product I purchase.  The consumer is always right, even when he or she is wrong.  okay, that last one was a joke, but I’m upset.  This was something I noticed right when I opened mine up, but didn’t say anything because a rep at the Apple store told me the same line you did.  Now that more users are experiencing the same situation, I feel the need to voice my concern.  Five hundred dollars doesn’t just fly out of my pocket as easily as it does yours.  When I pay for something, I expect to get exactly what I paid for and I expected a blue backlight.

Posted by Alex Bratu in New York on May 20, 2003 at 6:22 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Of course people are entitled to express their opionions, as indeed I am doing. My opinion is that something like the colour of the backlight is a very trivial matter, not worth getting worked up about, and definitely does not represent a flaw in the product, as you term it. The primary issue in my view is whether or not the device performs its primary function - which is to play audio tracks. If it does this OK then I think - once again - that you should give Apple a break on the very minor question of exactly what colour the backlight ends up being on any particular sample of the device. It just isn’t important.

Posted by nick in Knebworth, UK on May 20, 2003 at 5:59 AM (CDT)

Give Apple iPod Feedback

Apple, the kings of Customer Support…

or so they’d have you believe.

I own a 2G 20GB Windows IPod & so far have been mighty impressed with the device & customer service to the point of considering purchasing a MAC to see how good they really are!

Alas, now I realise that Apple are like most other manufacturers ... the short term profit & loss account is king & the customer well, a lemon to be squeezed until dry…

My money goes with ‘huesage’. I too will use this thing until it dies then swap to some other brand REGARDLESS of how much I love this device.

I refuse to be treated like a lemon.

Posted by AndyO in UK on May 20, 2003 at 5:32 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Some of you keep saying that we should not bother over the minor flaws of the Ipod. But the fact that Apple offers misleading marketing, is a serious problem. People are entitled to expressing their opinion, evn on minor detail such as the colour of the backlight. I personaly think that minor problems on the Ipod only reflects a much larger an serious problem… this case misleading marketing of the most popular MP3 player in the world… far.

Posted by eric in Trondheim, Norway on May 20, 2003 at 3:16 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Matt (and others who moan about this) - does your iPod play music OK? I guess the answer will be yes. If that is so then enjoy it and stop getting p*ssed off at something so trivial. Don’t give Apple such a hard time over every little thing. It’s like people defrauding on their insurance - for ever person who does it, insurance gets more expensive for everyone else. It’s the same with things like this. There’s nothing wrong with your iPod, it just behaves (in a very minor way) differently from some of the others out there. It doesn’t affect its primary functionality, so just be cool and enjoy it for what it is.

Posted by nick in Knebworth, UK on May 20, 2003 at 2:52 AM (CDT)

TechTV: AAC Developer Interview

Could someone in the US record, encode and post this somewere on the web so us not in the US can see it too? :)

Posted by Billy Sardar on May 20, 2003 at 2:29 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

If that is the case then why is apple releasing different versions of the ipod then? IF thats the case then shouldnt we be entitled to get the same ipod?

Posted by TrunksGoku on May 20, 2003 at 12:43 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

I submitted the top photo (the Crystal Method) one. At the same Apple Store I purchased my iPod at, all of the display models (15GB) also had noticably blue backlights. So blue, in fact, that I initially (and stubbornly) thought it was Indiglo. Then I realized it was an iPod, not a watch. :)

Posted by Matt on May 20, 2003 at 12:23 AM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

I just saw this article and was really baffled…i know some white LED’s have a bluish tint to them. I turned on my backlight to my ipod in the dark and I saw it was white., but hen I thought….the Apple Employee was in full florescent light in the store…I then turned on my light and then looked at the backlight…sure enough…it was bluish (and this is in regular lightbulb situations)....I think the backlight tends to look bluer in florescent lighting situations….ie: when you by a shirt at a store the colors look brighter then when you take it home or see it out in the sun. I’m sure under the massive usage the ipods recieve at the stores…the backlight might fade…of course a new ipod will look brighter than an old one that been on display in the public’s hand. Although…it still could be up for debate…and as far as the picture goes…dont trust it unless you see it with yoru own eyes.  Everyone try out the backlight in the dark then in the light and see if it looks bluer under lit conditions or not.

Posted by TrunksGoku on May 19, 2003 at 11:57 PM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

I received a 30 gig last Friday in Tokyo (personalized). It is definitely the top blue backlite one. Where should I email a picture?

Posted by Justin in Tokyo on May 19, 2003 at 10:55 PM (CDT) For Sale

has anyone snagged the domain “” yet?  i can see many a grandparent getting confused with this one.

Posted by tactile on May 19, 2003 at 9:25 PM (CDT) For Sale

Typical cybersquating anyway.

Posted by What's your frequency, Kenneth? in my computer on May 19, 2003 at 8:56 PM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

Mine is like the bottom picture.

Posted by Darkbandit in Charleston, SC on May 19, 2003 at 8:31 PM (CDT) For Sale

Jaguar, you beat me to it!!!

Posted by ipodedinthetoilet in mars on May 19, 2003 at 8:17 PM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

The top photo was submitted by a reader and the bottom photo was taken by me in my closet. No Photoshoping. I added captions to the above photos for clearification. I’d like more readers to email me their photos of a blue backlight iPod.

Posted by Dennis Lloyd in Irvine, CA on May 19, 2003 at 7:37 PM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

what motive would someone have for photoshopping a pic? i hope people who have these very blue pods share more info. i’m curious if they are different in other ways. I know that MY new 15 GB is FAR more blue than the bottom picture (which isn’t blue at all), but not NEARLY as blue as the top picture. What’s with that? i admit that I am so anxious for my bugs to be resolved (i don’t consider the screen to be a bug, but if this pod looks more like the advertised pod maybe it acts more like it too) that I may be creating senerios in my head, but, whatever, let’s see what comes of this.

Posted by jaguar on May 19, 2003 at 7:33 PM (CDT)

Updated: Is the backlight supposed to be blue?

never once have i heard any official word on “higher resolution”

higher contrast, however, i have. so this is most definately what the apple guy was getting at.

Posted by ike on May 19, 2003 at 7:30 PM (CDT) For Sale

who would go to apple owns, which makes sense.

Posted by jaguar on May 19, 2003 at 7:23 PM (CDT)

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