What Is Bias Lighting – And Why Should You Care?

Have you ever experienced discomfort after working on the computer or watching TV in poor or no lighting at all (save for the screen of course) long periods? That feeling of discomfort is caused by the strain your eyes experience from having to focus on a bright screen with no other light source around. This makes your eye muscles work harder than normal.

This is where bias lighting comes in. Bias lighting basically refers to lighting positioned at the back of your TV or monitor, creating a soft glow from behind the screen.

Below are some important things you should know about bias lighting and why you need it.

Bias Lighting Helps Relieve Eye Strain

When looking at a screen brighter than the space around it, your pupils constantly dilate and constrict to adjust to the amount of light your eyes see as the images on the screen change. These constant changes in brightness can cause your eyes to become overworked, leading to dryness, headaches, tiredness, and ocular migraines. This is also the reason why you often feel tired or sleepy when you’re working on your computer or watching TV in the dark.

Adding backlighting helps establish a baseline so your eyes won’t have to keep readjusting to the brightness of the screen. Since the bias lighting provides a soft glow, your eyes won’t need to dilate and constrict as much as they need to in a dark room with nothing but the TV or monitor on.

Proper Placement of Bias Lights Matters

With bias lighting, it’s important to place your lights behind the screen so it doesn’t create glare or make reflections on the screen. If your bias lights are positioned in a way that bleeds light onto your screen, it will cause a noticeable difference in how the picture appears, affecting color and contrast. The screen could become hazy, colors won’t be as bold and vivid, and shadows could disappear.

When attaching lights to the rear face of your TV or monitor, be sure the lights cast their light against the wall, which automatically diffuses their glow. If you’re going to mount LED strips, mount your lights a few inches away from the TV or monitor’s edges

What Type Of Light To Use?

Although any type of light can be used for bias lighting, some lights are better than others.

For starters, you can make a light box and place it at the back of the TV, but these could cost you a few hundred dollars to build. Lamps and other light fixtures could also serve as bias lighting, but getting them to the right position might be tricky.

A quick and effective fix is to use flexible LED light strips that are available in most hardware and computer stores. You’ll even find LED strips specifically designed for bias lighting.

Choose The Right Color Of Light

If you decide to go the LED strip route, know that they come in a wide of colors and color temperatures. The right color only makes your bias lights look cooler, it can also enhance the picture quality of your TV or monitor.

When choosing an LED color, you can’t go wrong with 6500K (Kelvin) lights, which generate a cool white light color. In addition, choose LEDs with the highest color-rendering index (CRI)—this is a measure of how accurately a light source reveals the colors of the objects it illuminates. The higher the CRI, the more it will enhance what’s on the screen.

Bias lighting is a great way to add light to your livings space, all while protecting your eyes from strain. Make your screen stand out and keep your eyes comfortable by mounting LED strips to the back of your screen.