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

Early 2008 Macbook Screen Flicker Problem


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mt6272

 
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I recently upgraded from 2gb to 6gb ram.
Now, my macbook has done this twice in the two days since upgrading:

Early 2008 MacBook Flickering Screen Issue - YouTube

When it happens, my macbook is completely unresponsive. I must hold down the power button to turn it off- when it books back up, everything works fine again.

Anyone know what I can do to fix this problem? (Hopefully besides removing the ram which has really sped up my macbook otherwise)
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chscag

 
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Quote:
Anyone know what I can do to fix this problem? (Hopefully besides removing the ram which has really sped up my macbook otherwise)
Yeah, sorry about that, but you're going to need to yank that memory in order to test whether or not the 6 GB is compatible. I know Mactracker says that model can utilize up to 6 GB but there have been reports of problems when doing so.

Where did you buy the memory from? Assuming you have 1 x 4GB + 1 x 2GB modules installed? Put back the original modules to see if the problem goes away. If it does, install 2 x 2GB modules instead.
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mt6272

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chscag View Post
Yeah, sorry about that, but you're going to need to yank that memory in order to test whether or not the 6 GB is compatible. I know Mactracker says that model can utilize up to 6 GB but there have been reports of problems when doing so.

Where did you buy the memory from? Assuming you have 1 x 4GB + 1 x 2GB modules installed? Put back the original modules to see if the problem goes away. If it does, install 2 x 2GB modules instead.
Purchased it from here:
eBay - New & used electronics, cars, apparel, collectibles, sporting goods & more at low prices
It is 4gb + 2gb

I knew there may be problems buying for such a low price and from a more less unknown vendor. Luckily i pounced on an item with a liberal return policy knowing I could either get a bargain or bad ram which I'd return.

Would it be worth a shot when I open my computer to simply switch the modules between the slots? Since this problem is so sporadic, I feel it could take a couple days of testing to confirm if it has been fixed Do you know if there are any diagnostic programs that could get me an answer within just a few minutes?
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vhaberkorn

 
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I have an early 2008 black macbook.
One year ago i upgraded my ram to 4GB and haven't faced that flickering problem.
You should test your ram.
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littlecody8

 
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Is it the entire screen or just the backlight? I had a white macbook where the backlight wasn't working but the actual screen itself was still on. Needed a new backlight converter power cable. The connection between the cable and the converter itself was loose. Order that on ifixit.com, I believe $20 but can't remember. Worked perfectly after that.
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mt6272

 
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Originally Posted by littlecody8 View Post
Is it the entire screen or just the backlight? I had a white macbook where the backlight wasn't working but the actual screen itself was still on. Needed a new backlight converter power cable. The connection between the cable and the converter itself was loose. Order that on ifixit.com, I believe $20 but can't remember. Worked perfectly after that.
Check out the youtube video in my original post - I have no better way to explain it.
My macbook will basically be working great for a while, then it will do what I have shown. If speakers are plugged in, it makes a very retched sound.... it just looks like the thing is getting electrocuted.

Speaking of youtube, I notice I run into this problem mostly when I am watching a youtube video, or some type of flash video on the web.

The consensus of opinions on the web is that taking out ram and replacing old is the only way to isolate the problem. Anyone know of any alternative testing methods, such as some kind of software that will test it?
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littlecody8

 
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Originally Posted by mt6272 View Post
Check out the youtube video in my original post - I have no better way to explain it.
My macbook will basically be working great for a while, then it will do what I have shown. If speakers are plugged in, it makes a very retched sound.... it just looks like the thing is getting electrocuted.

Speaking of youtube, I notice I run into this problem mostly when I am watching a youtube video, or some type of flash video on the web.

The consensus of opinions on the web is that taking out ram and replacing old is the only way to isolate the problem. Anyone know of any alternative testing methods, such as some kind of software that will test it?
Sorry I had missed the video. Not what I was talking about. I've never seen this problem before. Very strange.
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mt6272

 
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I think I have isolated the problem.

I first switched the modules. This worked well for a little while. Then, my macbook shut down in the midst of me running a few safari browsers. It started to blink with the front led and make a loud noise - 3 beeps/ blinks in succession, then a pause... repeating over and over.

I tried running just the 4gb module in each slot. No luck. Then the 2gb module - now my macbook works. It seems like a case of plain bad ram. Will be returning. Thanks for the help folks!
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chscag

 
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Sorry, a little late getting back to you. But it looks like you solved it isolating what appears to be bad or poorly RAS modules. Return them to the original seller and buy your memory from the folks at Other World Computing or from Crucial. Unfortunately the memory modules for your machine are a bit expensive because they're just not popular anymore.

If you need suggestions on a good memory testing program that's free, post back and I'll give you the URL.

Good luck with the new modules.
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mt6272

 
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Originally Posted by chscag View Post
Sorry, a little late getting back to you. But it looks like you solved it isolating what appears to be bad or poorly RAS modules. Return them to the original seller and buy your memory from the folks at Other World Computing or from Crucial. Unfortunately the memory modules for your machine are a bit expensive because they're just not popular anymore.

If you need suggestions on a good memory testing program that's free, post back and I'll give you the URL.

Good luck with the new modules.
No problems! Although a little nervous about trying 6gb again, I think i'm going to just pay up the 30 dollar difference for better quality stuff from owc and see how it goes.

I'm still interested in the memory testing program. I'd like to diagnostically compare how the modules I have now stack up to the owc ones i'll be getting.
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