Desktop Lighter - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Desktop Lighter

CNET Editors' review

Adjusting your computer's brightness just got a lot easier. Desktop Lighter offers users a way to quickly and easily adjust how brilliant their screen appears. The only concern is whether the majority of users will find a need for it.

This freeware program hides itself in the tray until you decide your computer needs an adjustment. Clicking on the program's icon brings up a simple purple and pink screen. So simple, in fact, the only variable on this control is a slider that moves up and down. As you click and drag this bar, a small window pops up to tell the user what percentage the display's brightness is at. Users need only to let go of the mouse button to maintain a selected level of brightness. There are a few added features to this easy-to-use program. One is a hot-keys option that allows you to adjust the settings with the keyboard; another is a way to make the display larger.

Desktop Lighter is a fantastic option for those looking to quickly adjust their screen. This tray icon saves users the hassle of searching through their computer's control panel to make the adjustment, especially if they find themselves making constant changes. If you aren't one of these people, though, you may not need this application. We recommend this download to anyone who needs to adjust display brightness.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.1 stars

    out of 18 votes

    • 5 star: 7
    • 4 star: 2
    • 3 star: 2
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 7
  • Current version:

    2.9 stars

    out of 16 votes

    • 5 star: 5
    • 4 star: 2
    • 3 star: 2
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 7
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-10 of 16

  • 3.0 stars

    "Use only if you know how to reset your colors"

    October 19, 2013  |   By lethalmud

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    Convenient
    I can tell by turning the screen towards the wall that the glare is a bit less

    Cons

    Like others said, it changes the colors, may or may not be easy to reverse

    Summary

    The negative reviews are kinda right, but it *does* take off some of the glare at night. Anyway, in my case, it seems like I'm able to get everything back to normal under "Graphics Properties" but ymmv. If your fn key brightness shortcut works then you don't have any reason to bother with this

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Permanently modifies your gamma - impossible to restore"

    January 6, 2013  |   By life359

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    Hotkeys (only reason I tried it)

    Cons

    Permanently modifies your gamma settings
    Shutting down, restarting, or uninstall does not revert changes

    Summary

    I signed up for a CNET account JUST to warn others before using this program. It permanently modifies your gamma and the changes cannot be easily reversed. I *think* I reverted them by using the NVIDIA control panel to modify the colour settings (changed from "Other applications control colour settings" to "Use NVIDIA settings").

    It's ridiculous that the coders of this software didn't code it to revert the changes when the program is stopped or at least revert when you restart or uninstall the program.

    DO NOT USE THIS GARBAGE APPLICATION. There are many other alternatives that do not PERMANENTLY modify your settings.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Doesn't work"

    November 8, 2012  |   By Wristbandlover

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    Can't think of any

    Cons

    Slide bar made no difference on my laptop

    Summary

    Don't bother

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Ruins your color settings. Disgusting."

    October 5, 2012  |   By JohnNathanShopper

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    None. There is nothing good about a program that irrevocably changes your color settings.

    Cons

    This widget changes the color settings on the computer--and I think it does it permanently.

    Summary

    If you haven't figured it out yet, Desktop Lighter changes the gamma, not the brightness. The brightness remains completely unchanged. That's false advertising.

    That wouldn't be such a bad thing, if it didn't change the settings in a way that's irreversible to factory settings, and in a way that seems invisible to the regular graphics settings of Windows and the graphics card.

    I don't know if I'll be able to get the laptop to look normal again.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "changes are not revertible"

    July 29, 2012  |   By un1QuEUsername

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    Changes screen colour (lightens colours to give you more WHITE on the screen)

    Cons

    changes are not revertible: even uninstalling does not set back your colour to the original settings. Also, the hint of a user here - to set the brightness back to 70% - does NOT revert to the former "normal" Clour setting.

    When you Use this tool, you will get washed out colours you will NOT get rid of by closing or uninstalling this tool

    Summary

    do NOT install or use.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Default is 70%"

    November 13, 2011  |   By Valionis

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    May be right for some people.

    Cons

    This program isn't really brightening the pc, it just changes screen colors. Adds white or black color. The worst thing is - after you change the screen "brightness" with this program, that is, distort the colors, you can't set them back to default if you don't know what the settings were when you installed the program, even after uninstall or computer restart. Default "brightness""of this program is 70%.

    Summary

    Distorts screen colors.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Couldn't get into pc with my profile. Required restore."

    October 13, 2011  |   By Meerkatdawg

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    None at all.

    Cons

    It turned the screen blue. When I adjusted the brightness it just adjusted the blue to lighter and darker. Mostly just bleached the screen.

    When I uninstalled and rebooted, I kept being put into a temporary profile. Had to do a system restore to get my username back.

    Summary

    Awful program. Useless at what it does and damaging to your system.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Not recommended"

    May 21, 2011  |   By iLeeW

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    Controls screen brightness to a degree

    Cons

    See below:

    Summary

    Summary: I realized that after a certain point, this program wasn't actually "brightening" my computer. What it was in fact doing was changing the colors on my screen; after having my screen brightness set to 100% through Windows, this program continued to affect my screen's "brightness" level beyond that, except it wasn't actually brightening; It was replacing lighter shades on my computer with the color white, and sort of creating the illusion of brightness by bleaching out lighter shades. The color of the blue side panel in Windows' folders disappeared completely when increased to maximum. Basically, instead of increasing illumination, it just starts bleaching lighter colors out after a certain point.

    I was also dismayed to realize during experimentation that if I set this software to minimum brightness and then uninstalled the program, my computer didn't go back to the brightness level it was at before the program was installed. The brightness level stayed dim even after this program was both closed and removed, and even though the brightness level as set through Windows was at maximum!

    Therefore, this software somehow affected my computer's settings in a way that wasn't actually fundamentally tied in to my operating system's brightness mechanics, but in some other way instead. I tried reinstalling and then readjusting before closing the program again, and wish I could know that I have my screen settings the way they were before I installed this, but now I'm not sure. I now regret that I ever used this.

    And FYI, I subsequently discovered through a bit of research that in Windows, you can change your computer's brightness levels with a simple hotkey/keyboard shortcut: Fn + up arrow/down arrow.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Desktop lighter software"

    December 7, 2010  |   By vancelecnet

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    My new LED is really bright. Digging into the monitor menu is a lot of work. This little software does the trick. I can adjust my screen brightness with a few key strokes. Amazing.

    Cons

    If it can adjust the contrast level. That will be awesome.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "This is a GREAT little program."

    March 16, 2010  |   By rini58

    Version: Desktop Lighter 1.4

    Pros

    It's great. It's fun. It's safe. Everyone should have it !!!! It's small but can really enhance your wallpapers/screensavers. It is cool. A true little gem. It cuts down on eye strain, very much. It's a must have goodie.

    Cons

    Can not find any, not a one.

    Summary

    Because my eyes are often sensitive from chronic sinuitis I have come to really appreciate this little gem. I can now run a low watt bulb in my desk lamp because this little gem takes care of my lighting needs in 2 heartbeats. Cllick on the desktop Icon, then slide the adjustment. Cuts down dramatically on eye strain for long hours computer useage. It's absolutely amazing in how much, this bit of adaptive lightting, can make a huge comfort improvement. Won't ever do without it now.

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Results 1-10 of 16

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Desktop Lighter