What Is A Laptop Magnifier? [Can It Help the Visually Impaired]?


In a world riddled with new technology that’s being released nearly daily, it can be tough to understand all the options that present themselves at us. Especially when we want to partake in the action but struggle with something such as low vision problems or even conditions such as glaucoma or macular degeneration.

The good news is that it seems that as technology advances, it’s not only new gadgets and doorbell cameras being released but helpful tools for individuals with some problems to solve. Recently, I saw that laptop magnifiers are a hot topic and wanted to touch on it briefly here today. What is a laptop magnifier? Here is what I can tell you on this topic.

So, what is a laptop magnifier? A laptop magnifier is a screen magnifier. It’s designed to help enlarge text and offers up to 3x magnification levels by merely placing the magnifier in front of your laptop screen. In most situations, a laptop magnifier will come in the dimensions of 10.25 x 14 inches.

This is only the beginning explanation of the benefits and specifications of laptop magnifiers. It’s important to understand the cost, the benefits that they can provide and have a clear picture if this is something that’s going to bring every day use and enjoyment back into your life. Let’s start diving into some of the details.

Laptop Magnifiers Broken Down and Explained

Laptop magnifiers are purely created and intended to be used by individuals with low vision problems. It’s just another low vision device designed to provide relief for those of you battling every day low vision conditions or diseases. They are extremely simple in nature.

They come as a large 10 x 14-inch lens/screen that has small arms (handles) that can grip the side of the laptop screen to eliminate the work needed by your hands and arms. I consider the product a hands-free option. This is essential for relieving eye strain while not creating any additional arm strain.

The 3x magnification levels these provide are a perfect blend to enhance the images and text on the laptop screen. Anymore magnification than this and you would not have the same clarity and quality displayed back to you.

These laptop screens also come with anti-reflective coating and block damaging UV rays.

Double Check Your Sizing

One of the biggest complaints I’ve seen floating around the internet about individuals who do decide to purchase the laptop magnifiers is the incorrect sizing when they receive the actual tangible product.

When you are placing your order, you will want to ensure you have the proper width and height and that the arms will easily attach on the screen.

Without doing so, you will mostly be in the same position you were in before ordering the magnifier except out a few extra dollars which are no good for anyone involved.

Glare Reduction as An Added Benefit

A side benefit you can receive with the use of a screen magnifier is they typically dramatically reduce glare on the screen depending on the lighting conditions. Part of this is due to the anti-reflection glass that’s used to create the products.

I’ve seen through various online vendors that you have the option to purchase magnifiers in screen sizes from 14-19 inches currently.

If you are using a smaller screen or larger screen, it doesn’t work the way it’s designed to, and I’d recommend something more along the lines of built-in computer software or a handheld magnifier.

I have a blog post that you can see here referring to the use of built-in computer software that may be able to provide you some assistance as well.

Lenses Used for Laptop Magnifiers

In most scenarios, the laptop magnifiers you may be considering will use high-quality Fresnel lenses to help reduce glare, add clarity and minimize distortion to your images and your text. Although the previous magnifier I mentioned typically comes in 3x magnification, you do also have the option at looking laptop magnifiers that come in magnification levels of 1.5-2x which could be better suited for your needs.

Alternatives Outside of Screen Magnifiers

There is always a plan B with low vision devices. If you know this just isn’t for you, you could turn to other options such as stand-alone magnifiers, the handheld magnifiers or even using the software we discussed previously to help enhance, enlarge and create more clarity on your images and text.

You could also consider just using a larger monitor to see if this helps provide any relief to you before springing and trying a bunch of different magnification tools. The choice is yours at the end of the day.

Pricing of Laptop Screen Magnifiers and Where to Find Them

From everything I have seen, it depends on the size of the magnifier you are looking to purchase but haven’t seen any options that are going to run you more than about 100.00 bucks. Most are in the 25.00-40.00-dollar range for the standard screen sizes such as 14-19 inches at 3x magnification levels or less.

Other magnifiers can also be relatively cheap such as the handheld magnifiers we discussed previously. These can run you anywhere from 10-25 dollars and provide a great deal of relief. Just keep in mind that they will require you to physically hold the item while it’s in use which can cause some not so fun arm strain over long periods.

Putting it All Together, Find the Best Option for You

It’s always about finding the best option that suits your needs and gets the job done at the end of the day. If that happens to be a laptop screen magnifier, that’s fantastic. Just be sure to check the sizing, so you don’t have to go through a lengthy return process.

If you always remember that several options exist for the applications that you are trying to perform, it shouldn’t be hard for you to find something that can provide clarity, reduce eye strain and eventually bring some joy back into everyday activities.

What’re your thoughts on laptop magnifiers? Have you personally tried any or recommended any specific model? Be sure to drop a comment below.

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