Apple remains mum as complaints mount over 2011 MacBook Pro GPU failures

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  • Reply 61 of 140
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    Originally Posted by jj1807 View Post

    My confidence in this company is really changing.

     

    Doubt it.

  • Reply 62 of 140
    ilouieilouie Posts: 1member

    I just had my early 2011 MBP GPU failure last month.  I brought it to the Genuis Bar and was quoted just under $700 to replace the logic board.  It was a little steep, so I decided to get the GPU re-balled with a local electronic professional for $180.

     

    It's been a month since the re-ball and everything is still working properly.  The solder that Apple uses which is green friendly cracks and brittle under high temperatures.  

     

    If you can't wait for a recall from Apple, I would suggest finding a professional solder to re-ball your GPU.

  • Reply 63 of 140
    It also happened to late 2011 MBPs. I asked for services last week and had its motherboard replaced.
    There were multiple symptoms : stripe booting screen, displaying irregular white dots while using and hang ( sometimes recovers from the state ), finally it showed blue screen of death, real blue without any messages. It's funny, on Mac, it should be semi-white screen of death with messages. And finally it couldn't find a booting HDD.

    I suspected Core Images/Video & thus GPUs. When I scroll web pages with photos, or when I changed UI for a project with Xcode, this problem appeared.

    This is very interesting. From GMA 2000 era of Intel Integrated Graphics Unit, similar white dots problems appeared. ( you can search it on Intel's support community sites. )
    If it's not GPU problem, probably it's about some component working with GPUs.
  • Reply 64 of 140
    I have a 17" early 2011 MacBook Pro that is not showing any of these symptoms yet. Looking at the system report, I see that Viseo Card is described as:
    AMD Radeon HD 6750 M GPU PCIe
    Intel HD Graphics 3000 GPU built-in
    The seems different from what is described here as "AMD-built GPUs" and identified as the source of the problem. Can we get some clarification on this? Do all early 2011 MacBook Pro laptops fit the profile of those that are likely to fail?
  • Reply 65 of 140

    I have a 17" early 2011 MacBook Pro that is not showing any of these symptoms yet.  Looking at the system report, I see that Viseo Card is described as:

    AMD Radeon HD 6750 M              GPU    PCIe

    Intel HD Graphics 3000                GPU     built-in

    The seems different from what is described here as "AMD-built GPUs" and identified as the source of the problem.  Can we get some clarification on this? Do all early 2011 MacBook Pro laptops fit the profile of those that are likely to fail?

  • Reply 66 of 140
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post





    Did you try gfxCardStatus.app?

     

    gfxCardStatus works great and in many ways saved me so I could backup certain items before taking it in for both motherboard changes, but at times, in order to get to select the Intel GPU, it would take a number of restarts as it has to go through the discrete graphics card first in order to get there, throwing a graphical hissy fit and freezing the Mac along the way.

     

    Still, after a while, not even gfxCardStatus will save you. You simply will not be able to get to that point. It's a hardware defect that once it has occurred, has no real solution unless you could somehow disable the discrete graphics card permanently, which would still be a temporary workaround really, since you didn't pay extra to only have the Intel chip on your MacBook Pro.

     

    The only real option is a motherboard change and that's still a lottery (I can attest to that 2 motherboard changes later). That's sort of fine (considering you can no longer trust your computer) unless you have to actually pay for it, which as AppleCare runs out for everyone, will be the only option apart from going out to purchase a new computer for a few grand and tossing the old one or selling it for a lot less than you would normally get.

     

    Just pondering...

  • Reply 67 of 140
    The miracle case.

    Kyiv, Ukraine. I was affected by this problems as well, and I didn't have Apple Care. The logic board has been checked by local Apple Service Provider and replaced after my email to Tim Cook and Phil Schiller.
  • Reply 68 of 140
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,405moderator
    I have a 17" early 2011 MacBook Pro that is not showing any of these symptoms yet. Looking at the system report, I see that Viseo Card is described as:
    AMD Radeon HD 6750 M GPU PCIe
    Intel HD Graphics 3000 GPU built-in
    The seems different from what is described here as "AMD-built GPUs" and identified as the source of the problem. Can we get some clarification on this? Do all early 2011 MacBook Pro laptops fit the profile of those that are likely to fail?

    It's the same model, they all have two GPUs. If you never used the dedicated GPU much, it might not fail because it would be using the HD 3000 most of the time. The 6750M only gets used for certain GPU-accelerated tasks.
  • Reply 69 of 140
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post



    I reckon there are around 3 million of the 2011 models in circulation. I'm not sure what levels qualify for a repair program but a 1% failure rate would be low yet leave 30,000 people with a broken machine. If a significant portion of that 30k went online to complain, it would seem like a huge problem.



    I don't think Apple should charge so much for the repair. If the number of repairs is low then the hit they'd take is small. To spend $500 to fix a machine worth about $800-1000 is hard to justify. IMO, they should offer a couple of options: $200 for the repair (similar to a battery replacement cost) or the owner can get $500 credit towards the cost of a new or refurb laptop and have to give Apple their old laptop. They should make whatever rules they have consistent across their service staff too.



    There should also be a software/firmware update that allows users to manually disable the GPU entirely at boot time if they choose.



    If the failure rate is 30,000 units, the loss here for Apple should be no more than $15m. It wasn't necessarily Apple's fault, it could have been AMD like it was NVidia's fault before that.

     

    I bet the number isn't even close to to 1%.   If it was, they'd have already done something about it.  A 1% defect rate in a tech product like this would be astronomical.  

  • Reply 70 of 140
    ipenipen Posts: 410member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post





    Actually my 2008 is ancient, I'm just not ready to up grade. Hoping for something next generation real soon.

    You'll find that the new 2014 mbp looks so similar to your 2008 one. 

  • Reply 71 of 140
    profprof Posts: 84member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

     

    As Apple has had previous replacement and repair programs, I can only assume that the issue never hit critical mass.  That is, there probably aren't enough people affected to warrant such a program.  They are likely to content to deal with it on a  case-by-case basis. 


    Not sure that really is the case here. I think first they considered it a fluke concerning only few people and now they're scrambling to create a remedy that doesn't involve replacing many millions of devices with brand new rMBPs (and reimbursing all the ridiculous logic board swapping costs) or otherwise means losing their face... The most likely outcome will be that they instruct their service people to have the devices of very nagging customers replaced FoC (of course without admitting any general problem) so they will only have to burn a couple M$ instead of billions.

  • Reply 72 of 140
    profprof Posts: 84member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post





    Did you try gfxCardStatus.app?

    You're missing the point. gfxCardStatus.app needs the device to correctly boot up (which is often not possible with affected devices) and if it does it can only forward the users will to the OS without actually guaranteeing that it really will stay on the iGPU. Connect an external display or start any demanding application or browse some website (the flash plugin will be happy to help you out here) and it will switch to the discrete GPU whether you like it or not immediately crashing the system. The only known way in OSX to prevent access to the dGPU is to remove the drivers with said side effects...

  • Reply 73 of 140
    profprof Posts: 84member
    Quote:

    It's the same model, they all have two GPUs. If you never used the dedicated GPU much, it might not fail because it would be using the HD 3000 most of the time. The 6750M only gets used for certain GPU-accelerated tasks.

    True, but doesn't matter, the breakage occurs without or without heavy usage of the dGPU. Also note that the use of an external display automatically requires the use of the dGPU so even if you just do text document editing while connected to a second screen all day long it will put some on-hours on your dGPU.

     

    I'm definitely not a heavy GPU user (but I do have a second screen connected most of the time) and I do monitor the temperatures and have fan profiles optimized for lower temperatures rather than less noise and yet my dGPU broke twice already (and according to the shop replacing the logic board they've even received a dud on the second round, so this Unibody has seen 4 boards already)...

  • Reply 74 of 140
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    hentaiboy wrote: »
    Ditto. I've already be burned once by Apple's GPU failures (Nvidia 8600M GT).

    Same here. My MacBook Pro 3,1 died early last year from the nvidia GPU defect. The machine was fine otherwise. I cannot afford to buy replacements for defective hardware that should last much longer than this. Apple has no replacement parts any more for that model, so I couldn't repair it if I had the money to. I'm very worried about running my last MacBook Pro hot (5,5) fearing a similar problem will strike. These GPU defects are repeatedly screwing consumers of all brands of notebook computers, not just Macs, and it needs to stop. But who's going to regulate computer defects? No one. No lemon law exists. No consumer protection in the USA for computer tech.
  • Reply 75 of 140
    skimncskimnc Posts: 1member
    I wrote an article describing the issue, and how to proceed if it happens to you:

    https://people.cam.cornell.edu/~zc227/extras/early2011mbp_graphics.html

    Just hoping it helps anyone who was in the same boat as me a month ago...
  • Reply 76 of 140
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    sdw2001 wrote: »
    I bet the number isn't even close to to 1%.   If it was, they'd have already done something about it.  A 1% defect rate in a tech product like this would be astronomical.  

    No they wouldn't. It has happened before. It takes a lot to get them to be accountable. If the defect doesn't show itself until customer service contracts are concluded, they have no motivation to respond to it... unless it's a big PR problem.

    Most big corporations will ignore a large percentage of defects and customers so long as it doesn't hurt their public image. With computer tech, unless the defects get regularly mentioned in magazines and high profile web reviews, where it seems to possibly affect future sales, there's rarely any accommodation or accountability for even mass defects.
  • Reply 77 of 140
    vaporlandvaporland Posts: 358member
    My wife had this exact problem with her early 2011 MBP 15": Sluggish performance, random panics, fan always running, screen distortion, freeze 'n go, extremely frustrating.

    But it was mavericks that put the nail in the coffin. I could not complete installation without a split screen crash.

    Showed this to the apple Genius Bar ( on something like the 7th visit regarding this issue - twice during all this they took it for over a week, but never could reproduce the problem) and the final response was "you're out of warranty, $800 to replace motherboard.

    Fortunately my wife had purchased a 3rd party service contract through her school.

    They replaced the motherboard and no problems since.

    Got really really tired of genius runaround and asking $800 to fix a manufacturing defect was totally over the top ...

    I'd definitely join a class action lawsuit. Apple's response was not acceptable.
  • Reply 78 of 140
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post





    It isn't Apple failure, but rather the GPU manufactures that design and run chips right at the limits of the process technology. GPUs just are not reliable. Think about it a bit, why did Apple under clock the GPUs in the new Mac Pro? I'm willing to state that reliability was a big factor.



    While not the same thing my MBP from 2008 is also showing signs of a GPU failure. In this case the internal display seems to loose every other column. It could be LCD related as external displays work fine. Sadly things are much better in the PC world.



    I wish this wasn't the case bu the fact is video cards go bad frequently.

     

    They could be more aggressive on cooling them. Note they had problems with 2010 models too. I'm curious how some of the recent integrated graphics chips will hold up. The reason I don't think that

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post



    I reckon there are around 3 million of the 2011 models in circulation. I'm not sure what levels qualify for a repair program but a 1% failure rate would be low yet leave 30,000 people with a broken machine. If a significant portion of that 30k went online to complain, it would seem like a huge problem.



    I don't think Apple should charge so much for the repair. If the number of repairs is low then the hit they'd take is small. To spend $500 to fix a machine worth about $800-1000 is hard to justify. IMO, they should offer a couple of options: $200 for the repair (similar to a battery replacement cost) or the owner can get $500 credit towards the cost of a new or refurb laptop and have to give Apple their old laptop. They should make whatever rules they have consistent across their service staff too.



    There should also be a software/firmware update that allows users to manually disable the GPU entirely at boot time if they choose.



    If the failure rate is 30,000 units, the loss here for Apple should be no more than $15m. It wasn't necessarily Apple's fault, it could have been AMD like it was NVidia's fault before that.



    It varies. Out of warranty they commonly offer flat rate repairs, which is usually $300-350. If offered they fix whatever is broken, but I don't think that covers expendable parts like batteries. This one seems to be a lead free solder issue. It's not like some of the alternative materials are much better for the environment anyway. I doubt they'll open a repair program for this one. Typically those offered repairs within 3 years of purchase. Many are already moving out of that window. In fact Applecare expired on mine.

  • Reply 79 of 140
    smallwheelssmallwheels Posts: 584member

    Apple needs to do better. Once the problem is known the company should from that moment on implement a policy that fixes this problem for all customers. Instead it seems that they haven't issued a company wide notice about this known problem and how to handle it. They let each store take their customers down this path where they must pay money and jump through hoops to get their machines functioning properly. That isn't fair or right. 

     

    Apple is doing exactly the same as other giant corporations. They stall, deny, and sweep under the rug their knowledge of what is really happening in order to keep profits up. This is not what an ethical company would do. 

  • Reply 80 of 140
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jj1807 View Post



    I have exclusively used Apple computers since 1999.



    Ironically, at almost the exact same time that this article was posted yesterday, I was editing a photo in Photoshop on my 2011 17" MacBook Pro when suddenly the screen went black. When I tried to restart the computer, my external Thunderbolt display looked very much like the 2nd photo above and the MPB display was light gray.



    I have taken it to an authorized Apple repair shop (we don't have a local Apple store), but after reading this article, I think I already know what the problem is. In order to keep up with my job, I'll probably have to go buy a $2k MBP for something that should be fixed by Apple. I'm also losing valuable work time while this is being sorted out. It's incredibly frustrating that Apple is not stepping up and resolving these issues. My confidence in this company is really changing.

     

    My ten year old Ford broke down, I was late to work I lost money, Ford should replace it.

     

    Enjoy your new Dell or whatever.

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