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repairing components


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hwally

 
Member Since: Sep 16, 2013
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Does anyone know a a site or sites dedicated to diagnosing and repairing Mac computers and components. I was recently given a bunch of non-working imacs and would like to repair them. I don't want to just replace parts I want to repair the parts. I learn by doing and going through the process of troubleshooting helps me understand the component and its relationship to other components. Thank you for any help.
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pigoo3

 
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This is the closest website that I'm aware of:

- ifixit.com

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hwally

 
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Thanks Nick. I've spent a lot of time going through their tutorials. They are great for how to find and replace parts. Very helpful but I need more detailed information on the actual repair of these dead components. Thank you for taking the time to respond. I've been reading a lot of the posts on this forum and have found a lot of useful information.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hwally View Post
Thanks Nick. I've spent a lot of time going through their tutorials. They are great for how to find and replace parts. Very helpful but I need more detailed information on the actual repair of these dead components. Thank you for taking the time to respond. I've been reading a lot of the posts on this forum and have found a lot of useful information.
When it comes to repairing Macintosh computers (and maybe Windows computers as well)..."repairing" occurs mostly in the form of replacing bad parts with good parts.

I don't think that there are many folks out there actually repairing:

- worn out fans
- bad logic boards
- bad video cards
- bad laptop display panels
- bad keyboards
- broken mice
- etc.

I myself have attempted in the past to repair a worn out laptop battery and power supplies from older desktops. But honestly...most computer parts that go bad really aren't repairable by the average user...mostly because the circuits are too small on circuit boards...or the bad parts themselves aren't made of parts that are replaceable or repairable.

You may come across the "odd" webpage/blog/You Tube video where someone has repaired one single part...but I've personally never come across a dedicated website that has in depth content regarding how to repair broken/non-working computer parts.

Unfortunately...most non-working computer parts are made to be thrown away & replaced with good working parts...or the parts are just too complex for a human being to work on.

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- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
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bboggess

 
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Repairing circuit boards such as a main board can be done. They require very specialized test equipment, a dedicated soldering station, and most of all, actual schematics of the boards. While I have successfully repaired boards (41 years as an engineer for a major medical imaging company), I had access to all of the above. Some repairs can be made using an oscilloscope, digital meter, and a common sense approach to the problem.

If you really want to get into component troubleshooting, start with building a few simple circuits with a breadboard. Get yourself an understanding of how things are supposed to work. Build a power supply and poke around with an oscilloscope and a meter.

Above all else, LEARN ELECTRICAL SAFETY. There are voltages floating around that can kill you! Knowledge is great unless you are either injured or dead.

Bill
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Dogbreath

 
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...and if the voltages don't kill the amperage will!
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Quote:
Repairing circuit boards such as a main board can be done. They require very specialized test equipment, a dedicated soldering station, and most of all, actual schematics of the boards.
Having worked for the government for well over 30 years as an electronic and computer tech, it was just too time consuming to repair circuit boards. Many of the boards used in specialized equipment and main frames are multi-layer and expensive. I have handled boards that cost more for one board than the best iMac you can currently buy. We kept spares on hand in kits for swap out purposes. The defective boards were sent back to the factory for repair or to be scrapped.
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MacShane

 
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I just had the control board out of my wife's iPhone 4s and I consider myself a hero for attempting that and actually having it work when I put it back together. Any person who could diagnose and repair such a tiny board or the boards in any of today's hi-tech gadgets, with even the most specialized tools deserves SUPERhero status!
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techiesteve

 
Member Since: Apr 24, 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hwally View Post
Does anyone know a a site or sites dedicated to diagnosing and repairing Mac computers and components.
You won't find it as they don't exist. Apple do not make schematics available, nor custom IC's. Even if they did, the test equipment requirements would make repairs economically not viable unless there was a high volume of repairs.

In the 1990's I was a workshop supervisor working for a company component level repairing manufactures failed boards, our customer base was all of Europe. The biggest customer was Radius, who rebadged monitors, but manufactured typically video cards and accelerator boards for the Apple Mac. Two of us were trained by Radius in San Jose, was a great trip to the USA. We then trained the 15 technicians in our workshop when back in the UK. Although many boards were simply repaired with the use of a scope, Mac and surface mount rework station, for others we developed programs for our ATE equipment, thus reducing repair times and costs. The high volumes of repairs made this viable. This all related to nubus Macs, now long gone.

Current Apple products are many times more complex, and without manufactures support and high volumes, cannot be component level repaired. There are a few exceptions, there are repair companies who set themselves up to replace the Nvidia GPU in older MacBook Pro's, and anyone with soldering experience can replace defective electrolytic capacitors in early G5 iMacs. I myself will repair some Powermac G5 power supplies as they are no longer available from Apple. Generally, component level repair of recent Apple products isn't viable.

Steve Bell
UK
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