PROBLEMS WITH MY UNIBODY MACBOOK PRO
Hi, I have an:
- Early 2009
- 17 inch
- Unibody Macbook Pro (UMBP) (5,2)
- Intel Core2Duo 2.66GHz
- Nvidia GeForce 9600 GT 512MB graphics (kept on Performance mode – not power saver – because it usually sits on my desk plugged into AC wall-wart 85watt mag-safe power like an iMac), (Nvidia GeForce 9400M onboard too)
- I have an external 27” monitor connected and mirrored - with the internal screen off (brightness is all the way down – thus running cooler)
- (Note: all the problems existed before any/all my upgrades – including the external monitor.)
- I have upgraded to 8Gb’s of 1066 DDR2 RAM
- Upgraded to a 500Gb Seagate Hybrid HDD
- The UMBP is Running the latest OS 10.8.4 (with automatic updates) – and it had the same list of problems (below) with OS Leopard, and Snow Leopard too!
1) System Information crashes - “Quits Unexpectedly”! SOooooo frustrating! I can’t even get the current specs so you guys know what we’re dealing with! So I looked them up in a file I have kept since I did all my research online to buy this UMBP. So, I copied all the data that was just now sent to Apple (not that anything will be done with it – they don’t care – my Mac is out of warranty). This app crashing has happened *numerous* times in the past couple years and I just didn’t know what to do about all these problems (the list continues below) because it’s been out of warranty since before I bought it used on eBay.
2) It will not play youtube or other internet video (such as *Netflix streaming*) without stuttering, stopping, and hesitating in video and/or audio!! I have CHARTER Cable Internet which runs between 20-50Mb’s!! This is NOT slow internet!
And with my Windows 7 (64bit Intel QuadCore) Desktop PC using the exact same wifi internet connection there’s *No stuttering*, no stopping, no hesitation in video OR audio!! It’s an older Gateway desktop with a tiny USB wifi dongle. And the desktop runs *on-board* Graphics – no graphics card in the machine!...at least not until I upgrade the power supply – then I can install one. ;-)
3) I canNOT get Adobe Reader to run on my UMBP - it crashes within seconds!! I finally uninstalled it and re-downloaded it and then reinstalled it – still same problem! So, I waited a few months and then re-downloaded it and re-installed it again – still same issue! And I know that Reader had been updated in that time.
I think that the following is unrelated but I figure I should put in all the data I can. The battery never says 100% (it’s always between 97-99% full. When I first got the UMBP it kept telling me to get a new battery (for $250!) And the seller sent the UMBP with a 65 watt (not 85 watt) mag-safe power supply…which I didn’t even realize until months later (hey, this was my first and still is my only Mac, so ya gotta give me some grace here – I hate(d) Microslave *so much* after living with Vista for 2 years that I HAD to get a Mac!..and I don’t ever want to go back! ;-) The only reason I even have a Windows box is because a friend of mine (who was borrowing my then spare beat up old car for like 3 months) gave me one when he got it as partial payment for a job he did on a small business network (yeah, he’s even more geek than me!)
At first I was thinking that it was the NVidia GPUs, but now I’m beginning to think that all three: the CPU and both GPUs are in need of re-soldering to the Logic Board. It seems that I’m not the only one online that agrees that the system cooling fans are subpar in UMBP’s (lots of complaints about burned fingers, etc.) – so, I run a small 6 inch fan (on high) across the top of the keyboard 24/7 so that it won’t completely fry! Well, at night I put it to sleep so I usually turn off the fan then…but anyway. It doesn’t wake up at night to do any background downloads or Time Machine (USB ext drive) work – it would most likely wake me up if it did (I’m a very light sleeper). The fan does a good job at keeping the surface (aluminum) “warm” (as opposed to HOT) so that IF I were to use the built-in keyboard I wouldn’t burn my fingers (like I used to – until I bought an external Bluetooth Apple keyboard – those keyboards are so nice!).
So, yeah, I could send it to someone (along with $200) who will reflow or reball the chips to the Logic Board, but that seems to be a band aid on a situation that is quite likely to happen again…right?
As I see it: Apple didn’t put enough cooling into the system – the fans are too slow/small – and thus I have a serious problem with the Logic Board!
And I was just on eBay looking at Logic Boards and they cost at least as much as most of the UMBP’s like mine! So that would be way too expensive – I might as well just buy another UMBP like mine – but that’s not going to happen.
The closest Apple store is 2.5 hours drive away from where I live. And the closest authorized apple repair shop is about 1.5 hours away and it’s not likely that they will run system tests for free…and the Best Buy here in town is not authorized to work on Macs – they didn’t show up in the search results at locate.apple.com/service/….
So, what can/should I do??