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Ongoing debate: prefer regular or non-glare glass?


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Jun 13, 2002
Fingerlakes Region of NYS
This is a me-to-me debate:

Regular vs. Non-glare glass (uv optional)

I keep going back and forth on this subject.

Some pieces I really like with non-glare - but in most cases I still prefer regular glass.

Like my smart@ss customer when I asked him what kind of glass he preferred, his answer: "Clear"

Now, whether to mix regular and non-glare in the same room? That's another issue

Your thoughts on the subject welcome!


I like regular.

I was told that regular has about 60% pertection against uv and non-glare only has 40%.

I don't know if that is true or not but I just like the crisp clean look of regular. In my store I use conv. Clear so I can put things in the window safley.

Just my two cents
I like anti reflective or museum myself.

Cuts down on the glare without obscuring the image.
I dislike non-glare immensely. We carry it but never push it. When customers insist, we provide it (with a pout).

Non glare, to my mind, especially over matted pieces, makes things look too fuzzy; fine detail is often lost. It also mutes some colors especially in the yellow to red spectrum. Some people seem to be under the impression that NG by itself provides protection for UV. I can never figure out that one.

When they express a preference for NG, I try to steer them to ImagePerfect, but can rarely convince them that they can afford it without taking out a second mortgage.

Mix and match regular with non glare? … it wouldn’t be my choice, but why not?
That smart-*** customer that wanted clear? That's what I usually call non-etched glass.

I prefer CC clear. I don't like to see it mixed in a grouping - maybe in a room, since window placement will affect glare so much.

Some items really need opaque glass.
Not big on the non-glare at all, due to the fuzz.

I'm in the AR, Museum camp.

Barring that, UV clear.

I only have one customer that insists on using non-glare. I keep a box of it around just for them. Unless it is in contact with the image (not a good thing) the diffusion of the image is very distracting.
I usually sell ConClear and if the client asks about Non-glare (reflection control), I suggest thet try the CC and if they really have to have the RC I'll switch it out for the difference in the price of the glass. I have never had to do it. But that's only if they ask. If they specify RC, I'll be glad to sell it to them.
I usually prefer regular (CC). But, I show non-glare (Reflexion Control) and Museum as options and discuss their benifits/tradeoffs.

Bill, I don't pout. more $$!
Bill, is IP still being marketed? I still have one piece left. We actively steer away from NG for all the reasons above and have gone to AR whenever possible. The Museum glass is gorgeous but sticks in most folks' pocketbooks.

Do you sell much IP?

No debate here, I only sell non glare if they request it. I hold samples over the art so they can compare. But, I don't pout either if they go for it, they are spending more money after all.

That handy little sample w/museum glass from TruVue is making it easier to sell that stuff......
Originally posted by MerpsMom:
Bill, is IP still being marketed?
I hope one day it is no longer available. I have one customer who insists on using IP. Next time she is in, I'm thinking of blatantly lying to her and telling her it has been discontinued and I can't get it anywhere.

No where.

No How.

Give me regular or give me death!

Can't stand NG. Have it on hand as I do have customers who ask for it. They were told in the past (not here!) that it was "better" for the prints because it "blocked" the light from getting to the print.

If a customer asked for NG UV then I show them the Museum as I sell it at the same price! Since Idon't push UVNG I need to recoup the cost faster than I do for CC and Museum.
I had a chance to get boxes upon boxes of IP for free when Michael's switched to UV. I politely declined.

Bill, is IP still being marketed?
I believe so. We haven’t bought any in a while, but we get most of our supplies from Don Mar and their catalog still has it listed.

Do you sell much IP?
Not very much. We’ve got a few (very few) customers who swear by it; but most, because of sticker shock, settle for clear. I actually like DenGlas a bit better, but because of our inventory of IP, it’s hard to justify switching.
What is IP? Denglass?
Image Perfect, a micro-etched, low-glare glass that I find impossible to clean.

I don't believe I'm alone there.

Denglas® (one "S") is the proprietary name of a group of products similar to ImagePerfect i.e. micro-etched, very low reflective glass.

With the stuff I've seen, it appears to have fewer optical "flaws" than IP, but it is a bit more expensive.
Perfect View!!!! It is not as expensive as museum, clear than non-glare, and it is UV coated. I probably sell 80% Perfect View. I just put it into the order and dicuss it only if the customer asks about the glass. At that point, I show them my perfect view sample and very few customers go for something different. A good way to increase the final pricing.
Originally posted by J Phipps TN:
...I was told that regular has about 60% pertection against uv and non-glare only has 40%.
Non-glare glass is just regular glass with etched surfaces. That does not change the UV-filtering characteristics, as far as I know. Both diminish UV light by about the same amount -- but neither could be called "UV-Filtering glass."
Originally posted by J Phipps TN:
...I was told that regular has about 60% pertection against uv and non-glare only has 40%.
Non-glare glass is just regular glass with etched surfaces. That does not change the UV-filtering characteristics, as far as I know. Both diminish UV light by about the same amount -- but neither could be called "UV-Filtering glass."
Am I the only one that uses Conservation Reflection Control? We use it on almost everything, including stitchery, and frames with fillets, and multi-mats. It is a LOT more clear than it used to be, and I hate the way Clear glass looks like a mirror when the image is dark.

Don't get me started on IP, and cleaning it! YUCH!
Sue, I often use CRC. I ask where the piece is going to hang and then decide from there.

I sell a fair amount of Museum Glass - a nicer solution than reflection control - especially since Tru-Vue's price cut. I noticed that in the glass pricing survey that my pricing for Museum Glass was on the low side. When I finish with a box of Museum Glass, I typically find that my COG run about 40% giving me a substantially higher gross profit than from other glass products. Perhaps you all are missing an opportunity to raise your profits by pricing Museum Glass above an easy sale?

Pat :D
I like both CC and CRC. I also believe its great to have a mix of all glass products on the wall (oops)glazing I mean. The little TV window samples are nice, but nothing beats having the real thing when a client needs to see full results of the options.
Museum glass rocks.
FYI Bill, Don Mar is dropping Image Perfect. I don't like the nasty stuff, so I am happy about that.

I ask customers if they want "clear" or "frosted". I prefer clear, but I will advise them to put non-glare on dark pieces so their item doesn't look like a mirror.
We mostly use CRC and regular NG when price is an issue. I'm like Sue, CRC & NG is much nicer on dark pieces (especially those Elvis on velvet ones
Actually, NG has improved over the years, since I can remember when BOTH sides were etched!
Now, that was nasty!
But Mike, do you remember when both sides were sand-blasted instead of acid-etched? Closest thing I've seen to opaque glazing.

I sometimes still run across a piece of this - usually in an imported photo frame.

I don't actually believe it was sand-blasted - it just looked that way, and it is the basis for the common dislike among framers (including me) for non-glare glass to this very day.
Yeah Ron, that old "blasted" glass had a texture so rough you cold actually feel it. It was like the old bathroom window glass, just thinner.
Today's Reflection Control and CRC are so much better. Sometimes I get a lite that I can practically see across the room through.

This week I got in my first box of Conservation Clear that came on the Guardian low-iron glass. The sealing tape is clear with the new logo on it. Haven't used any yet, but looking forward to comparing it to the traditional CC.
:cool: Rick
At the sales counter I recommend RC or Conservation RC unless
a) there is more depth than a single mat,
b) the art consists of calligraphy, fine line work or fabric.
c) they have indicated that price is no object.

If RC is not being used, I offer AR or Museum (wouldn’t it be less confusing if Museum were called Conservation AR?)
If that is too expensive, then it’s back to Regular or Conservation Clear.

When new customers say, “I don’t like non-glare,” we show them a sample of what we don’t sell--the really bad etched glass, and then show them the RC and AR. They get it.

I liked clear glass until I framed one of my friend’s very intricate, subtle collages with it. The glare completely killed it.
<font size=5>I LOVE non-glare!</font>

I have a piece on the sample right above the large dark piece with the Museum.... both face the south facing windows and the street.

On summer days you can only see the frame and the white FOG.

I can't remember where I read it (maybe you can remind me Terry . . .) but NG causes a 19%degridation of color saturation and a 17% reduction in clarity.

If the customer puts the 45 to my head, I sell them NG. It is even priced higher than CC... go figure them apples.
I hate the way Non Glare looks, especially when not against the artwork (which it shouldn't be).

We were one of the few that loved IP and sold loads of it. Are we the only ones??? Now that LeWinter dropped IP we have no choice but to order it directly from Zuel which is a pain.

We are deciding whether to discontinue IP totally and switch to AR glass now that the prices are more within reach. After the NY show we will make a decision.
personally, i sometimes prefer the "softness" that etched glass gives to items. also, it can help hide small imperfections in photos and prints.
That was my thought exactly, Ron. But when I saw that you had responded I thought either
A.) The thread was going another direction all together or
B.) Something really interesting was being debated. (ooops - no offense to anyone)

Then I realized it is just one of those things that everyone has an opinion about. (about which everyone has an opinion - nod to Capt. English)

Let's see, hmmm, 32 replies - nearly 3000 registered grumblers - we got a few more to go...

OK, I am keeping this ongoing and could not refrain. I agree with Shopmonkey on the soft effect NG can have. A baby's photo looks so much better than with clear. We do stress CRC to our customers when the majority request NG over clear.
This thread is a sterling example of the need for some standardized terminology in our industry. So far, we have:

Reflection control
Museum glass
Den glass
Etched glass
Acid-etched glass
Frosted glass
Image Perfect

Some of which are brand names, some of which describe the product well. Add to this the confusion whether this type of glass is more UV-protectant.

Please support FACTS.
Most customers ask for non-glare. We do a lot of shadowboxing and for the previously mentioned reasons we stick with clear. Non-glare adds a great effect sometimes though. For example we have done some lithographs of pencil sketches and non-glare actually softens the look of the lithograph and it looks like an original sketch. I liked the effect so much that I did two of my own that way just for that reason.
Originally posted by Rick Granick:
Yeah Ron, that old "blasted" glass had a texture so rough you cold actually feel it. It was like the old bathroom window glass, just thinner.

:cool: Rick
That's what I used my NG scraps for. I cut them to single window pane size and used my glazer points to hold it in the bathroom window!

I was told that when then they do what ever it is to non-glare (etching into it or whatever) it takes away some of the pertective qualitys that regular has.

I just always tell my customers that so they can be carful where they hang their piece.(no direct sunlight)

I guess better safe then sorry.

If there is any difference in the protective qualities of ordinary glass and non-glare etched glass (and I doubt that there is), that difference would be moot. For framing purposes, neither of those types is considered to be protective glazing.

The "default" glazing in my shop is Tru-Vue Conservation Clear. If a customer is interested in reducing reflections, I demonstrate Museum Glass. Yes, it is more expensive, but more customers are buying it now that the price and iron content (green tint) have come down.

For those who want anti-reflective glass on a budget, AR does the job, but filters less UV light than Museum Glass.

You are right to caution customers against hanging in direct sunlight, because there is no perfect protection from light damage, other than storage in the dark. UV-filtering glazing is the best we can do in any case, but no glazing completely stops light damage.

All light is damaging; the amount of damage depends on the time of exposure and light intensity. Sunlight is many times more intense than artificial light, so it is the most harmful.
Jim, where does one find the quick and dirty percentages on the glasses? I thought I knew a lot, but you threw me with the idea that AR filters "less than Museum." I'd figure that AR is NOT UV filtering at all, just as would I think that about clear glass or the despised NG.

TruVue has a chart in their "Glazing Catalog" giving UV values as well as light transmission values.

So, according to their sales literature for their products:

Museum Glass, Conser Perfect Vue, CRC, and ConClear all have UV blocking values of 98%

Premium clear and reflection control are 45% Uv blockers and AR Reflection-free is a 78% blocker.

Hope these numbers help!
They do, Bob. Just off the top of the head: if a client won't go Museum due to cost, would you be comfy selling them AR as a half-way measure? No freaking out here, guys: it's just a compromise question. I actually haven't figured the cost difference in a lite of Museum vs. AR.

Brought this up coincidentally because my best designer client brought back two pieces we'd done with CC. Her customer hates the reflection and wants NG (in this case, would be CRC, right?) I hate NG, sight unseen. Now you can brickbat me for being obstinate. Candy likes Conser PV which I don't, but at least I OWN some from another job. I'd love to get rid of it. Sorry, Candy, I'm cranky from trying to fix computer problems all day.

Any glass thoughts?

That's okay. I know those computer problems....yuck.

However, when you put PerfectView next to CRC, PV is much clearer.
Originally posted by Jim Miller:
All light is damaging; the amount of damage depends on the time of exposure and light intensity. Sunlight is many times more intense than artificial light, so it is the most harmful.
What about fluorescent lighting? A supplier told me recently that the UV light from this type of artificial lighting is more damaging than the UV from sunlight?

A few weeks ago I had a piece of cardboard lying on the floor with some scrap matboard scattered on top of it. It was there about a week and directly underneath one of the fluorescent lights. When I was trashing the scraps, I couldn't believe the fade marks that were present on the piece of cardboard. Wow. I wish I could get every customer to understand that a few extra bucks for CC is worth it.

P.S. I prefer clear ;)