Backlight Bleed vs IPS Glow – How to tell between them

When you’re using a monitor with your laptop or computer, you want to ensure that the quality of the screen is good. Along with the resolution and the ergonomic design and positioning of the monitor, there are many different things to consider.

And whilst generally monitors are quite problem free, there are some issues that you can have with them when you own them. Two of these pretty common issues are known as backlight bleeding, and IPS glow.

Often mistaken for each other due to their similarity, they’re actually quite different. And, if you do have a monitor with its backlight bleeding or suffering from IPS glow, then there are different solutions you can take to try and fix them.

So firstly, how are they different, and secondly what, if anything, can you do to resolve them? This is what we’ll be looking through today.

Backlight Bleed vs IPS Glow

There’s a fundamental difference between backlight bleed and IPS glow. One is literally the backlight shining through the edges of your screen, whilst the other is down to the IPS technology used, and isn’t actually a problem with the monitor itself.

Obviously, if you have a VA panel monitor, then you don’t need to worry about IPS (In-plane switching) glow – it’s only an issue if you have an IPS monitor. Both glow and backlight bleed issues are typically faced when there’s a lack of ambient light on your monitor’s display.

This being said, they’re both frustrating to deal with and you’ll want to try and minimize any distractions when you’re using your monitor. Lets look at both of them individually.

Backlight Bleed

Essentially, backlight bleed is exactly as it sounds – it’s the backlight, the light behind your display used to illuminate it, of your monitor coming through and being visible, perhaps distorting your screen. You’ll tend to get this at the edges of your display.

It’s a pretty common problem that most people will face down the years with a monitor. It can be extremely noticeable if you’re using a monitor in a darker room, or if you have the brightness on the monitor screen very high.

In the future, you could avoid suffering from backlight bleed that you’ll get with some cheaper LCD monitors. You can do this by spending more on an LCD monitor. Generally, backlight bleed tends to happen with cheaper monitors, and higher quality options are much less likely to suffer from backlight bleed.

In opposition to this, you could also think about going for a different type of monitor; an OLED monitor. They actually don’t use a backlight like LCD monitors, so you’ll never need to worry about bleeding. Because they don’t need a backlight, they’re more likely to be both slimmer and lighter than an LCD monitor.

So if you’re getting light showing around the edges of the screen you’re using, then this is undoubtedly backlight bleed.

Can you stop backlight bleed?

The truth is that many cheap monitors suffer from backlight bleeding, and it’s very difficult to fix it if you’re suffering with it. You can try turning down your monitors brightness, as well as enabling local dimming on your monitor too – this might help to make a difference.

If you want to actively do something about your monitors backlight bleeding issue, then you can undo the screws on the back of your monitor and loosen its front up.

Then, use a microfiber cloth to clean the areas where the backlight bleed is very noticeable. You can also use electrical tape along the edges of the monitor’s metal frame (not the screen) to reduce light bleeding through.

But generally, backlight bleeding is actually quite a difficult problem to resolve completely. In many cases, the best option is to look for a new monitor. Check this article of the best 4k monitors – none of which should suffer with backlight issues.

IPS Glow

Now, IPS glow is often confused for backlight bleeding, but they’re not the same thing. It’s often mistaken for being he fault of your backlight, but actually it’s just down to the IPS technology that’s used in many displays nowadays. You’re most likely to notice it at the very corners of your display, and not along the edges like backlight bleed.

To be fair, the advantages of using IPS technology in our screens outweigh the negatives. So, you may have issues with your screen glowing in the corners. But IPS technology makes our display look a lot better, and the colours are a lot more vibrant. It’s also better for response times, too.

As well as this, IPS displays generally make thing better when you’re viewing your monitor at different angles. However, some people will notice IPS glow only when they look at the monitor from another angle than directly straight on, which can be frustrating.

Can you stop IPS glow?

There’s not a specific way that you can “fix” IPS glow like you can try and do with backlight bleeding. There’s just certain things that you can do to make it less noticeable to you. You can;

Make your room brighter – IPS glow is going to be a lot more noticeable if you’re using it in a dark room. If you make the room slightly brighter and let more natural light in, you probably won’t even notice the IPS glow.
Turn the monitor brightness down – As well as making your room brighter, you could also do the opposite with your screen. IPS glow is going to be very noticeable if you’ve got your brightness at full, but if you make it a little less bright, then you might not notice the effects of IPS glow.
Change your angles – Often, people only notice IPS glow when they’re looking at their monitor from a certain angle. It’s often noticed on a second monitor because it’s not directly in front of you. If you can, change the angle you’re looking at your display can help to minimize any glow.
Avoid IPS monitors – Although this won’t help you if you’ve already got one, in the future you can avoid monitors that use IPS panels. Doing this can stop you having to deal with any sort of glow.


In conclusion, although they are very similar to one another, backlight bleed and IPS glow are definitely different. And whether the problem is IPS glow or backlight bleed, you’re going to want to try and fix the issue. Otherwise, it can be annoying to look at.

The key way to tell which one you’re suffering with is where you’re noticing the light. If it’s at the corners of your screen only, then it’s more likely to be down to your IPS panel display. But if it’s along the edges and the corners of your monitor, then it’s probably the backlight bleeding through.

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About Nathan

Hello! I'm Nate. I work for an internet company during the week, so you'll probably see me on here jabbering about the internet and building websites, which is my main side hobby.

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