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Dell Inspiron 1420 brightness issue

by red2letters / August 23, 2009 1:48 PM PDT

I have a Dell Inspiron 1420. Few weeks ago I found out that my laptop's maximum brightness was diminishing.

The Fn plus up key is not helping. The maximum brightness my laptop now attains is not what it used to be (Its now quite dim).

I have tried changing power settings to "high performance" but still no use.

Is this an issue with some settings or is it a hardware problem? I have my dell warranty.

Looking for helpful suggestions.

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Just so you know.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 23, 2009 11:46 PM PDT

CCFL (the tubes) dim over time. This is partly why you see the move to LED backlighting. Google CCFL to learn up about this old technology.

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Is this my problem?
by learnold21 / November 7, 2010 2:45 PM PST
In reply to: Just so you know.

I've been looking everywhere trying to fix a similar problem. Though as far back as I can remember the screen has always darkened when the laptop is unplugged. I have a Dell Inspiron 1520 w/Windows Vista from 2007. My computer is plenty old enough for the ccfl tubes to be dying. The only thing that makes me wonder is my friend has the same model and does NOT have the same problem. She does have a glossy screen instead of an anti-glare screen like me but I believe they are both lcd right? I still have my original 9-cell battery as well but I rarely use the laptop without plugging it in since the screen is too dark without it. I know it has nothing to do with my settings since they are all on full brightness. I need to decide if I need a new battery or a new screen since both are somewhat expensive. Any ideas?

P.S. - I've been offered to have a new computer as my graduation gift but I'm reluctant because we just upgraded the RAM and Hard drive space and I've kept it in pretty good condition. Do you think it's worth it to scrap it and start over?

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"hough as far back as I can remember the screen has always
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 7, 2010 3:29 PM PST
In reply to: Is this my problem?

"hough as far back as I can remember the screen has always darkened when the laptop is unplugged. "

And that effect is under your control in one of Vista's many settings. This is not a defect.

You write it has nothing to do with your settings yet I don't see a screen shot to see if you are on the right setup screen.

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Screen Shot
by learnold21 / November 8, 2010 1:03 AM PST

Well I really don't think a screen shot is necessary but if you need verification that I know my settings, very well: No matter what path you take to get there, you have to go to "Power Options" on Vista. Under "Power Options" I have it set on "High Performance" which should use full brightness even w/out being plugged in. But since that made no change I also went to "Adjust the display brightness" and set it to the max brightness with or without being plugged in. When that made no difference, I went to "Change advanced power settings" and under "Display" I made sure brightness was set to "100%" whether on battery or plugged in. It is possible that it's a glitch that ignores my settings but it is definitely not the settings I put in that are the problem.

And when I said "As far back as I can remember" I mean exactly that which doesn't mean this problem was always there just that I can't remember how far back it started. I'd love to know if a new battery would do the trick but I don't want to spend $80 and find out it's not the battery at all.

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It's not the battery.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 8, 2010 1:12 AM PST
In reply to: Screen Shot

That's an easy one. After decades of computer repairs it has never been the battery for this effect. It can be the driver and it can be that setting but you elected not to share the screen shot. That's your choice and I wish you the best of luck figuring it but why not take it up with Dell? They made it and they would support it.

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Out of Warranty
by learnold21 / November 8, 2010 2:59 AM PST
In reply to: It's not the battery.

I didn't add the screen shot mostly because I don't know how to add it without a place to put the attachment. IF you could tell me, I have the file saved already. And I wanted to take it up with Dell but honestly my laziness in dealing with the problem has left me out of warranty and, as I understand it, you can't use their tech support without being under warranty. I don't mind them saying they won't fix it because I know it's my fault I let the warranty run out but I just want to know what the problem is. Thanks.

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No attachments but
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 9, 2010 12:38 AM PST
In reply to: Out of Warranty

I use for this. The forum CHANGED and to speed things along I suggest you put the link on its own line like this:

So folk can click on it. I'm not saying I don't believe but given I'm not there it's the only way to be sure it's not that (or is.)

Worst case is that you reload the OS and drivers.

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driver missing
by antoinelamarre / October 29, 2009 10:07 AM PDT
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by antoinelamarre / November 7, 2009 8:21 AM PST
In reply to: driver missing

Try going into your BIOS and looking at the settings. Press F2 when the Dell splash screen loads. Go to the video setting and adjust the brightness to maximum for battery power and AC power.

It worked well for me Wink

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it works
by bedazzledbymesa / November 27, 2012 4:58 PM PST
In reply to: Bios

this issue has been haunting for a year now and thanks for your information i'm able to do my work while plugged in or using battery with desired brightness.. no longer stuck at a very dim screen when plugged in..thank you so made my day Happy

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Worked for Me Also
by jmedoom / August 1, 2015 6:56 PM PDT
In reply to: Bios

Thanks you so much. This worked for me also. I am in Colombia and all my work was on my notebook (it was backed up), and I really didn't want to buy a new computer. Regards!

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you would better
by ianmagic2 / November 28, 2012 11:16 AM PST

since you have mentioned that your laptop battery is under warrantly, so i recommend you to go the seller to replace a new one

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