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  1. #1
    To fix or buy new

    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2014
    Posts
    3
    To fix or buy new
    Hi
    Just recently (last 3-4days) I have been having random graphics related issues and crashes. Symptoms include:
    Boot up fails with irregular dark grey graphics on the light grey boot screen
    Columns of "boxes" of graphics transposed laterally
    When it does boot successfully the system crashes after 15-20mins with major pixelation issues on screen

    I have tried:
    Time Machine to days before issue arose (no effect)
    Disk repair / permissions / Onyx - all of which did improve performance but the graphics issue still exists.
    Safe mode boot doesn't fix issue
    Benchmark tests show the system to be running at appropriate speed.
    I could not get as far a graphics benchmarking without a crash.
    I am loathe to do a full reinstall - I suspect it won't help anyway

    So I'm suspecting the graphics card is dying. My question is whether on a late 2009 27" imac this is worth repairing ( I have no idea of cost or even if it's possible) or whether I should just start afresh. Given that it'll cost ~$200 just to have it assessed if it's not practical to fix then I'd rather spend that money on a bigger hard drive on a new imac.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated

    Thanks

  2. #2
    To fix or buy new

    Member Since
    Oct 16, 2010
    Location
    Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
    Posts
    2,600

  3. #3
    To fix or buy new
    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Location
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    Posts
    20,020
    Specs:
    iMac i5 2.7GHz, 16GB memory, OS 10.10.5
    Agree with your diagnosis Zebitty and five years is a pretty decent run from a computer so the time may be nearing for an upgrade anyway. And the huge speed difference ah well!
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  4. #4
    To fix or buy new

    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2014
    Posts
    3
    Thanks guys

    In response the firmware update - it stated I didn't need it when I tried to install. also my imac was the first batch after those early flickering issues so I never had those. To be honest in my attempts to install the firmware I was having problems worse than ever before just booting up - so I think it is time to move on. It's just that we've been through so much together that it's sometimes hard to let go. But I know deep down that I can learn to love again and that there are plenty of other iMacs out there for me.


    Younger, faster, thinner iMacs.

  5. #5
    To fix or buy new
    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    31,466
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.7.5
    Quote Originally Posted by Zebitty View Post
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Before giving up...try two things:

    1. Booting the computer from an external hard drive with a fresh install of the Mac OS.

    If the problems remain...then the problem is definitely hardware. And if it is hardware...I would do one more thing:

    2. Open the iMac up & give it a good cleaning with some canned air. This will make sure the problem isn't from excess heat caused by dirt blockages.

    Two things worth trying before spending $1200-$1500 on a brand new computer.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  6. #6
    To fix or buy new
    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Location
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    Posts
    20,020
    Specs:
    iMac i5 2.7GHz, 16GB memory, OS 10.10.5
    Sounds more like a wedding ' been through so much together' than a lump of plastic and metal!!!!

    My Macs have been precious to me since the 1989 Original LC ~ when the &^&%$#@ things work well!
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  7. #7
    To fix or buy new

    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2014
    Posts
    3
    Thanks all for the suggestions.

    The external reboot changed the nature of the graphics issue but didn't fix it. The open and clean event was a bit more interesting. I haven't opened a mac in a long time - I used to fiddle with both mac and PC systems back when there was room to swing a cat inside the box. But as the cases got smaller it was a process of increasing frustration to meddle due to a condition known as meaty fists which limits my ability to get my hands in between components.

    But having got it back together I can report that there wasn't that much dust (which surprised me) and the fans now work fantastically, and I can feel the gentle waft of electronic air on the other side of the table. On the other hand, the graphics card seems to have died completely now. Unless I didn't reconnect it properly but I don't think that likely as it can only go in one way and clips into place.

    Anyway, off to the shops to buy a new 'un.

    Thanks all

  8. #8
    To fix or buy new

    Member Since
    Oct 16, 2010
    Location
    Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
    Posts
    2,600
    I thought Nick's suggestion was a very good one - but alas!!

    I guess you don't want to try replacing the graphics card which I didn't realize was a socket replaceable type:
    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/iMac+In...placement/9553

    I have no idea where or what the cost of one is these days, but just a possible option.

    Or as you suggested and as my parents told me regarding loving relationships - there are lots of fish in the sea!! Just make sure you get the right one.

  9. #9
    To fix or buy new
    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    31,466
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.7.5
    If replacing the graphics card is desirable. Give Powerbookmedic.com and eBay a try for the part.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

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