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

Dead graphics card or ?


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Travis959

 
Member Since: Jun 22, 2012
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I have an early 2011 Macbook Pro with an AMD 6750m and Intel 3000 graphics card, that I purchased a little over a year ago.

One night I woke up and the Macbook was sitting there with it's fans running at 100% and no display. I turned it off and the next morning when I turned it on, no display on the laptop or when using an external monitor and it's been like that ever since.

The charger has also gone on the fritz where I have to place it a certain way and rotate the Macbook Pro to a certain angle to get it to begin charging. After that, it charges fine. Not sure if it's related, but I believe it started happening at the same time.

So I turn the computer on and besides no display, the computer works fine. It boots up to OSX Lion and I am able to connect to it through SSH, SMB, and VNC. Through VNC, I can see I am defaulted to the AMD card and unable to pick the integrated one using gfxCardStatus - it just puts me back on the "discrete only" card. It does list my AMD card in the dropdown menu on gfxCardStatus, so as far as I can tell the AMD card is fine.

When I go to about this MAC -> Displays there is nothing listed. If I go to displays in the settings panel, there is the choice for resolution, but that's it. Detecting displays will not do anything. The Intel card is listed in the about this mac panel and in the system information application like it is detecting it, but I'm not sure.

I believe I have reset the PRAM and NVRAM, but it's hard to tell without a display. I also tried resetting the SMC, but I am unable to do this. Everytime I press the button combinations (left Shift + Control + Option + Power Button), the computer simple turns on like normal. As far as I can remember, it's not supposed to turn on while pressing this combination. The only other thing I've tried is updating the firmware and OSX Lion.

I'm sure I'll probably need to replace the logic board, but I'm just don't get why the display will not work if I do have at least one functioning graphics card, especially since that graphics card is supposed to control the external as well.

Anyone have any ideas they want to throw my way before I go spend $900 on a new logic board?

Thanks.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis959 View Post
I have a late 2011 Macbook Pro with an AMD 6750m and Intel 3000 graphics card, that I purchased a little over a year ago.
If you truly have a "Late 2011" MacBook Pro...then you could not have purchased it "a little over a year ago"...since it's not "late 2012" yet.

Late 2011 MacBook Pro's were released October, 2011. If you truly have one of these...then you still have some portion of the 12 months of complementary Applecare remaining. And if this is the case...just take your MacBook Pro to your nearest Apple store to have them look at it...or ship it to Apple if an Apple store is not nearby.

HTH,

- Nick

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Travis959

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
If you truly have a "Late 2011" MacBook Pro...then you could not have purchased it "a little over a year ago"...since it's not "late 2012" yet.

Late 2011 MacBook Pro's were released October, 2011. If you truly have one of these...then you still have some portion of the 12 months of complementary Applecare remaining. And if this is the case...just take your MacBook Pro to your nearest Apple store to have them look at it...or ship it to Apple if an Apple store is not nearby.

HTH,

- Nick
Early 2011 then, my mistake. I purchased it in May 2011, and for some reason I thought it was a late 2011 model, but I can't remember where I got that idea from.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis959 View Post
I'm sure I'll probably need to replace the logic board, but I'm just don't get why the display will not work if I do have at least one functioning graphics card, especially since that graphics card is supposed to control the external as well.

Anyone have any ideas they want to throw my way before I go spend $900 on a new logic board?
Ok...good to hear we have the MacBook Pro model identified correctly...since you certainly would want Apple to look at this (and possibly repair things) if you still had Applecare remaining.

As far as your question above. As you may know...many newer (last 3 years or so) MacBook Pro's have two graphics processors...the less powerful integrated gpu, and the more powerful discrete gpu.

It's my understanding that the computer automatically switches from the less powerful integrated gpu to the more powerful gpu depending on graphics processing needs (this may also be switchable manually via system preferences).

So what I'm suggesting is...if you feel that your logic board is damaged (presumably the video hardware)...and specifically only one of the graphics processors...the integrated (less powerful gpu) may be the one that is damaged. But just because this gpu is damaged...does not automatically mean that the computer will switch to the more powerful discrete gpu.

The MacBook Pro with two graphics processors is not like the Space Shuttle (which has backup systems)...where if one of the MacBook Pro's graphics processors "dies" that it automatically switches to the other one. The MacBook Pro switches from the integrated gpu to the discrete gpu depending on graphics demands...and not working vs. not working.

I should also mention that these sort of issues are VERY VERY complex. The trouble may be with the graphics hardware...or it could be something else on the logic board. In either case...a logic board replacement may be in order.

As far as $900 for a new logic board. Are you sure that it's worth it. $900 is a lot (I'm assuming parts & labor)...you may just be better off putting that $900 towards a new computer. Of course this is a newer MacBook Pro...so maybe there's enough residual value to make it worth while.

I think that if it were me...I would have Apple take a look at it...and have them diagnose the problem. This may cost you $50-$100 for the diagnosis...but it's better to know EXACTLY what's wrong BEFORE paying for $900 replacement logic boards. You certainly would not want to pay $900, replace the logic board, and boot up the computer to find out you still have a problem of some sort.

HTH,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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Ramimac1

 
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almost sounds like a Display issue instead of a Board issue. the only way to find out is take it to apple. Maybe ask apple if you can buy the applecare since you are only 1 month over. also did you buy it on a Credit Card like a Amex? Amex doubles manufacturer warranties. Just a thought.

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Travis959

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramimac1 View Post
almost sounds like a Display issue instead of a Board issue. the only way to find out is take it to apple. Maybe ask apple if you can buy the applecare since you are only 1 month over. also did you buy it on a Credit Card like a Amex? Amex doubles manufacturer warranties. Just a thought.
I used Apple's financing to pay for it.

I can't really take it to an Apple store as the closest one is over 3 hours away. I could ship it, but would like to explore my options first in regards to maybe there is something I missed or additional troubleshooting tips. Also I don't really want to pay a diagnostic fee on top of the shipping/new parts/labor as I'm fairly confident on what the issue is and could easily replace the parts myself.

I have another laptop in the meantime (not a Mac), so it's not my number one priority to get it fixed right away at this point in time, and I really don't want to spend close to $900 (parts + shipping) on a new logic board as I agree it may not be worth it in the scheme of things. I guess I could get a used one for $600 but there isn't really much of a guarantee there in regards to how long it would last.

All and all, I'm stuck with a $2,400 laptop that I was only able to use for a year and I'm not really sure what to do with it now. I would say I could wait a few years for the price to go down on the parts and fix it then, but even the 2008 logic boards are pretty expensive for how old they are.
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Ramimac1

 
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First thing i would do is call apple and see if they will let you buy apple-care for it. if they let you, $250 for apple-care is better than $900 for a new board. all it will take is a phone call to find out

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