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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

MacBook (2007) won't boot - black screen of death


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vonjenkton

 
Member Since: Nov 30, 2011
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Hello all,

I purchased a used 2007 13-inch MacBook (Core Duo) a few weeks ago. It worked fine for a while, but will no longer boot consistently.

When it boots, I hear the hard drive spinning, and the screen briefly flashes. I do not hear the start-up chime, and the F6 key on the keyboard doesn't turn on.

If I attempt to boot it 10 to 15 times, eventually it correctly boots (sometimes). I also tried booting in safe mode and diagnostics mode to no avail.

I've tried resetting the SMC and the PRAM. The battery is fully charged.

I purchased this for my daughter, and her heart is broken. :-(

This is our first Mac.

I know I'm going to eventually have to take it to the Apple Store, but it's pretty far away and I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about the problem.

The first thing that popped into my mind was the logic board, which would be disastrous, effectively turning the MacBook into a pretty paperweight.

Is it possible the logic board is in the process of failing, which would explain the intermittent boots? Or could it be something else?

Thanks everyone!
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chscag

 
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The concern is the fact that no "chime" (bong) is being sounded when it attempts to boot. That could be the sign of a hardware defect. I really haven't heard of any problems with logic boards on the older MacBook models, usually the failing logic boards are on the older MacBook Pro models. I'm thinking that the machine has a failing power supply module that sometimes works.

Why don't you go to iFixit: The free repair manual and see if you can find the instructions for changing out the power supply module on your MacBook. Also check to see if they have them in stock. Of course the problem could be something else. Unfortunately a 2007 MacBook Core Duo is not worth very much and certainly not worth spending a lot of dollars on repairing.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vonjenkton View Post
If I attempt to boot it 10 to 15 times, eventually it correctly boots (sometimes).
When I hear this...my first thought is bad hard drive. Or the OS on the hard drive is messed up in some way.

- 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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vonjenkton

 
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Thank you for the quick response. I searched iFixIt for the power supply module and didn't come up with any relevant results. I also tried a generic Google search and couldn't find much info. Does this part sometimes go by another name?

Was it the MagSafe Board? That's the closest thing I could find.

Hopefully it's another issue besides the logic board. I've been checking prices -- they sell for $250 to $300, which is about what I paid for the MacBook...


Quote:
Originally Posted by chscag View Post
The concern is the fact that no "chime" (bong) is being sounded when it attempts to boot. That could be the sign of a hardware defect. I really haven't heard of any problems with logic boards on the older MacBook models, usually the failing logic boards are on the older MacBook Pro models. I'm thinking that the machine has a failing power supply module that sometimes works.

Why don't you go to iFixit: The free repair manual and see if you can find the instructions for changing out the power supply module on your MacBook. Also check to see if they have them in stock. Of course the problem could be something else. Unfortunately a 2007 MacBook Core Duo is not worth very much and certainly not worth spending a lot of dollars on repairing.
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vonjenkton

 
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At this point, I think that would be a relief, considering the price of a hard drive vs. a logic board. I suppose the hard drive spinning doesn't necessarily mean it's working.

I have a 1TB SeaGate external. I wonder if there's someway I could try to load it from that to see if it's the hard drive...


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Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
When I hear this...my first thought is bad hard drive. Or the OS on the hard drive is messed up in some way.

- Nick
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vonjenkton

 
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Here's an offbeat question: Would the battery charge if the logic board is bad?
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vonjenkton View Post
I suppose the hard drive spinning doesn't necessarily mean it's working.
Exactly. Sometimes (in fact many times) a bad hard drive will still spin...it's the read/write heads that go bad. There's basically two mechanical moving parts in a hard drive...the spinning hard drive platters...and the read/write heads that move back & forth to read/write the data.

- 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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