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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Jul 07, 2012
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    24
    Replacement keyboard / localisation question
    Hi chaps,
    I recently received a dead macbook pro 15" (2008, nVidia problem) for free, so I took it all to bits and baked the logic board at gas mark 6 for 7.5 mins with nothing to loose other than some time, and blow me if it didn't boot up and works fine. I chucked in a HD and some old RAM, and I now have a nice chuckabout laptop.

    The only thing is some of the keys on the keyboard seem to be dead, namely 7,8, volume keys, backspace and the keyboard illumination keys do work but require persuasion. Obviously, the quickest fix is just to replace the keyboard with a second hand unit. However, UK keyboards for A1260 units are quite expensive, and I'm not really willing to sink a lot of cash into this little project.

    What I'd like to know is this: are all keyboards (of the same era) the same underneath just with different keys and mapped correctly from the OS? US and other European boards are cheaper so if I were to buy one and transpose the keys over... would I end up with a UK board?

    Thanks in advance for any replies.
    Last edited by phjils; 04-17-2014 at 04:53 AM. Reason: Spelling and Grammar.

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
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    50,215
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, Sierra
    What I'd like to know is this: are all keyboards (of the same era) the same underneath just with different keys and mapped correctly from the OS? US and other European boards are cheaper so if I were to buy one and transpose the keys over... would I end up with a UK board?
    No, but if you can get hold of a US keyboard you would just need to know which keys to press in order to obtain the same result as on a UK keyboard. For example: I can press my upper case numeric 3 key on my US keyboard and get this: ##### but if I hold down the Option key while pressing the numeric 3 key I get this: £££££

    Nice work getting that machine in order again. Enjoy.

  3. #3

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    May 20, 2008
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    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Just a thought. Maybe the keyboard is bad...and maybe it isn't. That "baking the logic board" may work for a while...but who knows long-term.

    And who knows if the "baking" didn't cause the keyboard problem (the baking process can go both ways):

    - fixing some things
    - causing problems in other areas

    ...it's not an exact science.

    Or maybe the keyboard problem existed before you took possession of the computer. Of course the only way to know for sure...is to replace the keyboard with a known working one.

    Just wanted to throw this out there in case a new keyboard doesn't solve things. And don't be surprised if the video issues return. Many times the "baking" isn't a long term solution.

    - 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

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Jul 07, 2012
    Posts
    24
    Thanks for this...
    Thanks for the replies.
    I know that the baking method is something of an inexact science, and success varies - I once had an G4 iBook and an IBM Thinkpad, both with the ATI chip that has the same issue as the nVidia. Tried the internet fix of putting a silver foil cup of lighter fluid on the chip and setting it alight... quite something to do in a flat that doesn't have any outdoor space, and to the shock of my other half who walked in during the procedure! Neither of them ever worked again and got broken and sold for spares on eBay.

    Hence why I'm not really willing to plough cash into it. It's a toy, a plaything... but a plaything that I'd like to function completely. Who know how long it will be until the chip gives up again, could be a couple of days, months... might go on for another 6 years?

    I spoke to the original owner of the laptop and he said the reason it stopped working was because his 4 year old son, er... relieved himself over the keyboard. I'm so glad I cleaned this thing before I started doing anything to it!

    I'll see what happens when I get a spare.

  5. #5

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by phjils View Post

    I spoke to the original owner of the laptop and he said the reason it stopped working was because his 4 year old son, er... relieved himself over the keyboard. I'm so glad I cleaned this thing before I started doing anything to it!
    So this laptop could have stopped working (originally) due to the graphics hardare issue (mentioned in the original post)...or a 4 year-olds urine!

    You sound experienced enough to know that any sort of liquid on a laptop is not good. And that a liquid spill can effect many things. It's possible that the lquid damaged multiple things...and the logic board baking only solved one of them.

    Of course if you can come across an inexpensive keyboard to swap in...that would certainly tell you if the original keyboard/keyboard cable/logic board is the issue or not.

    - 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


    Member Since
    Jul 07, 2012
    Posts
    24
    Just a quick update on this. I'm typing this message on a cheap replacement keyboard bought on ebay. It was cheap because the guy selling it said it hadn't been tested, he was breaking a Pro the same model as I have got because of... yes, the nVidia problem.

    Well, after a small amount of time fettling and taking off a lot of tape, it all works! All the keys work again, the backlight works. Not bad for a £12 fix. Very happy.

    All I need do now is get some RAM - 1GB is fine for Snow Leopard, but I'd like to go to Mavericks, which I'll have to bump it up to over 2GB as I know 10.9 to be something of a memory hog.

    Thanks for all the replies guys.

  7. #7

    chscag's Avatar
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    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, Sierra
    All I need do now is get some RAM - 1GB is fine for Snow Leopard, but I'd like to go to Mavericks, which I'll have to bump it up to over 2GB as I know 10.9 to be something of a memory hog.
    Actually, Mavericks handles memory better than previous versions of OS X. I would bump that machine up to at least 4GB or more.

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Jul 07, 2012
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    24
    Thanks for that. The quest for cheap RAM starts here... and a replacement battery. The one I have lasts for 30 mins at best from a 'full charge'.

  9. #9

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Nov 28, 2007
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    Specs:
    Imac 27", i7 3.5GHz, 3TB Fusion drive, 32GB memory, macOS Sierra.
    There is no CHEAp Apple compatible memory. Do not use cheap eBay dealer and such memory. Buy from OWC or Crucial, both Mac specialists who have lifetime guarantees on their memory.


    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memor...o/Upgrade/DDR3
    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!

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Jul 07, 2012
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    DDR2 is DDR2 is DDR2... I think people that buy 'mac compatible' RAM are being exploited. As long as the numbers and the speed match, then RAM is RAM.

  11. #11

    MBP17•David's Avatar
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    MBP17 8GB/1.9TB 2xSSDs Sierra • MBA11 4/128GB • TC 2TB • TV3 • iPh6 128GB • iPadPro12
    It is true, that with RAM, unlike SSD, the compatibility is not so much of an issue, but the quality certainly is: personally, I wouldn't waste money on cheap memory, just as harryb2448 said - with the price of RAM these days, you'd only be spending a few quid more for a genuine, high quality stuff anyway.
    Dvid

  12. #12

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Nov 28, 2007
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    Specs:
    Imac 27", i7 3.5GHz, 3TB Fusion drive, 32GB memory, macOS Sierra.
    And it ain't DDR2 but DDR3.
    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!

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