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

Macbook 3 Bars of Grey on LCD but External Monitor Fine


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Espvision

 
Member Since: Jul 14, 2012
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My black 2.2 Macbook Core 2 Duo A1181, 4Gb Ram
is working perfectly except the video display shows 3 bars of equal height shades of gray.
The external monitor works perfectly and shows all functions of the comptuer are fine.

Thoughts please?

History: Computer was working perfectly until it had problems recognizing and not charging the battery.

Pulling the magsafe would put the laptop to sleep.

Resetting the SMC and PRAM would only help temporarily. (SMC did the trick actually) Took to Apple.

They took it and then said they would charge me $755 because they found evidence of liquid Damage.
I declined and took the machine back.

When they gave it back, LCD screen was as above.

I told Apple that they should at the very least give me back the computer as they had recieved it. But they argued that the liquid damage was going to cause problems eventually anyway. I do not agree with them that the LCD was about to have problems. It always worked fine.

I did not check the external monitor at the time but hard drive was booting up (whirring and clicks)

Completely disassembled and cleaned computer and logic board (overnight soak and clean, 2 day dryout for board.)
Reassembled with care and thermal paste.
(not a technician but not really a novice either)
LCD screen still bad but battery problem completely gone

Read some info here and decided to test external monitor. It worked fine.

Because the backlight works, I am imagining that it is the data getting to the LCD that might be the problem.

(Tested booting from external drive, no changes, so assuming it's hardware) Also tried different resolutions on both displays,

The LCD would blink while changing (normal) then same output, sometimes a 4th shade of grey would show up. After running a program for a few minutes, the LCD screen would end up being a uniform grey, no bars. External monitor would be fine)

Skype works fine, so isight and mic working.

Really appreciate any suggestions.



Thanks



ESP.
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chscag

 
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Sorry, but it sure sounds like moisture got into the LCD panel. However, since you're handy with repairs, you can replace that LCD panel for under $200. Check eBay and other on line suppliers. Since you took the machine apart and cleaned it, it may last quite a bit longer with a new display panel.
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Espvision

 
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Chscag, thanks for your comment, what I did not make obvious, is that the screen has completely ran flawlessly up until the time Apple looked at the battery problem.

This is not a problem that appeared through normal use. It came back from Apple like this.
The LCD screen never had a problem.

I don't think Apple could have or would have let moisture get in to the screen.

I would think something to do with data getting to the screen?
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chscag

 
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I fully understand what you're saying. I don't know what Apple could have done when they checked your machine to cause that to happen. The symptoms you describe are indicative of moisture or damage to the LCD panel. What points to the LCD panel being at fault is the fact that the external monitor works OK. If it were a logic board or GPU failure, it would show up on the external monitor.

I would go back to Apple and speak with a supervisor. Explain to him or her that the LCD panel was working fine with no visible defect until they (Apple) disassembled it and returned it to you. Be polite but persistent. At the very least if they caused the problem, they should replace the LCD panel for free.
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Espvision

 
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I agree with you completely, I'll go in there in the next day or two and say exactly that.
Wish me luck.
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Espvision

 
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No joy from Apple, going to replace the data cables to the LCD display...Any thoughts as to which one chscag?
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chscag

 
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The one cable that is usually suspect is the LVDS cable (from logic board to display). Some of our members have been able to get one on eBay or you could try the folks at powerbookmedic.com. The cable is a tad expensive and may not solve the problem. LINK

You might want to give them a call (go to link above) on their 800 number and speak to a tech. They're an authorized Apple repair service center.
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