Dead pixels

  krypt1c 18:41 27 May 04

In issues 162 of Computeractive a reader queried DABS response to a complaint about dead pixels on his recently purchased notebook ie it was within industry standard. In issue 164 there's a follow up. After advice, via Computeractive, from a solicitor & trading standards the reader took out a small claims action based on the Sale of Goods Act "freedom from minor defects". DABS settled in full, including costs, before the case was heard.
But, as the article points out, the reader may not have won if the case had proceeded, and it doesn't mean DABS, or any other company, will always settle.

  Sir Radfordin 19:07 27 May 04

By dealing with something before it gets to court is a fairly safe way of making sure that the law will never be properly enforced. The same has happened with the discusion where the contract is formed when paying for goods online (Kodak, Argos cases etc). By doing this DABS know that anyone else who wants to go down this route will have to start legal proceedings. If a case goes to court then it will set a precedent which could be far more costly.

  computernerdiamnot 19:39 27 May 04

When i purchase say a laptop i asked for the machine to be set up first if buying from the shop. If i order it of the net i.e monitor, desktop or laptop and even if it has one dead pixel you can send it back under the distance selling rules.

  AdrianP 21:24 27 May 04

There is an ISO legislation out about dead pixels which would explain everything.


The International Standards Organization or ISO have a document called 13406-2 that covers all the standards relating to the requirements of quality for liquid crystal displays.

In this lengthy tome they outline four types of defective pixel:

* Type 1: number of always-lit pixels.
* Type 2: number of always-unlit pixels.
* Type 3: other defects, particularly on sub-pixels and the RGB cells making up pixels (lit or unlit). This means red, green and blue pixels lit the whole time. Experience shows that this is undoubtedly the most common defect.
* Type 4 (Fault Cluster): the number of defective pixels in a square of 5 x 5 pixels on a panel. These are by far the worst types of problems.

To find the total number of defective pixels allowed, add up the defects of Types 1, 2 and 3. A cluster is seen as a combined fault or more significance.

They also have a horribly complex method of working out 'fault classes', which are the criteria on which your screen might be replaced. As the result of the limited public exposure of ISO 13406-2 and the ambiguities it contains, 90% of screen makers seem to have chosen to ignore these guidelines on the basis of profitability".

  krypt1c 21:50 27 May 04

Sir Radfordin - how right you are. Perhaps if more people took the small claims route companies would have to bite the bullet and take on the complainent in court.

computernerdiamnot - I should have said in response to the 1st query Computeractive did mention this option.

  oresome 20:07 28 May 04

Returning an item under the distance selling regulations can be a costly excercise. As well as the return carriage and insurance charges, the seller can deduct the cost of sending the package in the first place, which may well be more than was actually charged as part of the sale. You wouldn't want to do this too many times before getting a satisfactory screen.

  computernerdiamnot 10:45 03 Jun 04

acer now offer the buyer protection of any dead pixels, if you order a computer monitor or laptop you can request set up in shop and if ordering from internet a technician will check before sent out. If for anyreason there is a fault no matter what they will replace within 7 days at a cost to acer.

  Kilobyte 00:20 04 Jun 04

It's also quite possible for pixels to malfunction at any time but any faults are mostly noticed on receipt of a new tft screen or laptop.

  Sion 01:04 04 Jun 04

LG have a good policy on dead pixels for their TFT range. I emailed their UK customer services to look into thei policy and they said "specification guidelines state that a failure is when there are four failed pixels or if there are 2 failed pixels within 20 mm of each other then this is also considered a failure. Or one dead centre of the screen " Which i think is very generous. Manufacturers like Samsung require at least 6 before they even think of takin it back.

IMO though, monitors shouldn't leave the factory with dead pixels.

  accord 05:57 04 Jun 04


If TFTs didnt leave the factory with dead pixels the price of a TFT would double overnight, you cant have it both ways.

Touch wood, both of my TFTs,(iiyama and LG), my old Sony Vaio and my IBM Thinkpad, have no DPs.

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