Weird problem with my macbook when I watch videos?

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This doesn't happen every time I watch a video, so I'm not sure what the problem is. A couple of week ago I tried to watch a video on an anime site, (I don't remember which one) and all of a sudden the video froze, but the sound didn't. Then the screen proceeded to keep going on and off, but I know my computer was still on since I still heard the sound which was still not frozen. Obviously I had to hard reset, and that seemed to fix the problem.

But then today while I was watching a video on a local news station website, the video and the audio froze. Again, I couldn't get anything to respond after waiting a minute or two, so I had to hard reset. When I turned my computer back on, it stood on the white screen with the apple logo for a minute, then suddenly turned off. When I pressed the battery indicator button after that, it didn't light up at all. But when I tried turning my computer back on after that, it came on but took a little longer than usual to start up. I also got the "your clock is set to a date before 2008" message and had to log back in to my wifi.

I have NO idea what is the problem here...I don't think it is my battery, since it is a brand new one from OWC with only 15 cycles. Running out of battery can't be the issue either, since I had around 53-55 percent of the battery left when this happened.

edit: Right after I wrote this post and went to eat dinner, I came back up to find that my mac had turned itself off...I pressed the battery indicator, and it showed 4 lights as I expected but wouldn't turn back on. When I plugged the charger in to try an smc reset, all of a sudden all the lights started flashing as if there was no battery. And when I did get my computer on, I did indeed see an X where the battery symbol is. And right as I was typing that sentence, a percentage showed back up on the bar, but the charger light is still green...but coconut battery shows it as charging as does the battery indicator. If an SMC reset doesn't work, what else can I try? I will seriously cry if it's my logic board. :(

edit 2: Well, it looks like I'm going to cry then. After an smc reset, it APPEARED to work at first since the charger light changed to orange, but then my computer starting acting as if it had no battery again. And it hasn't switched back like it did before the reset. Is there ANYTHING else that could cause this besides a bad logic board? If it is my logic board and a new laptop was the only possible fix, would it be possible to have it replaced with a refurbished 17" model the same as mine or newer at the apple store? I have bad vision, so the new 15" mbp's are not going to be doable...I've tried them every time I've seen them in a store and it just isn't going to work out. :(
 
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zippythecellist
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More weird stuff! I did an apple software update earlier this week, and I've randomly been getting this error message:

"System extension cannot be used

The system extension "/System/Library/Extensions/AppleUSBEthernetHost.kext" was installed improperly and cannot be used. Please try reinstalling it, or contact the product's vendor for an update."

And I'm still getting the weird issue about my mac recognizing the battery and then not recognizing it...not to mention that yesterday I was just watching a hulu video, when the activity monitor showed that my memory was using page outs and swaps...that NEVER happens when all I'm doing is watching a video or just surfing the net. Hopefully my genius bar appointment today will fix these problems, but what can I do if for some reason the apple store can't fix it?
 
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Wow, I would be interested to hear what the genius bar says. I am afraid it will be the logic board. If so I would balance the cost of a new logic board with a "new" used one from some place like eBay. Uses 17" do tend to be a bit pricy since Apple no longer makes them. Apple does not even offer refurbished 17" on their website.

If portability is not a factor there is always the iMac which would give you an even bigger screen.

Just some ideas. Let us know what the genius bar says.

Lisa
 
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The genius bar's "solution" was for me to buy an apple battery for $180 plus tax, since my owc battery can cause "massive damage." They refused to even look at it or run tests because I had an owc battery...what are the signs of a failing logic board? I don't think it can be my logic board, because I'd imagine things like my processor or ram wouldn't work right if that was the case. I think I may have to call owc and ask if they can exchange my battery for a different one since this one isn't always being recognized.

But buying a new computer isn't an option...and a new logic board would probably be cheaper than replacing the laptop, since the apple store told me that a new board would be like $500. I've never seen a mid 2010 17" with anti glare go that low.
 

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From what I'm reading...it sounds like there are two problems (or maybe they're related):

1. Video issues.
2. Battery/power issues.

For the video issues. Try connecting an external monitor...and see if this helps (see if the problem is duplicated on the external monitor).

As far as the battery. It sounds like it is not too old (10-15 cycles). One thought is it could be that the battery is defective (return & replace if possible).

I don't see it mentioned that you did an SMC Reset...so I would do that. It's possible that with all of the battery removal's & reinstall's that you've already done the equivalent of an SMC Reset:

Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC)

Lastly. Your 17" MBP has what is known as a "DC-In"/Magsafe board. This is a small board separate from the logic board where the Mag-Safe plug attaches to...and the power flows thru before it gets to the logic board. So with power issues...sometimes the DC-In board/Mag-Safe board can be faulty.

But...if you are also having video issues...then it may not be the Mag-Safe board...or maybe there are 2 issues (Mag-Safe board & graphics hardware).

Hard to say without more testing. Test with an external display...and think about the possibility that the battery is defective.

- Nick
 
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Yeah, the owc battery only has 15 cycles on it. But I did like 2 or 3 smc resets, and the problem didn't get fixed either time...in fact, it seemed to get worse with the first one since every 10-15 mins, the X battery logo would switch on and off with a battery percentage. It doesn't happen that often now, but it's happens enough to not trust my computer off the charger. What else can I try? I don't think it can be the MagSafe board since my computer has been fine working on the charger, (other than he battery randomly not being recognized) and I don't have an external display to test with.
 

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What else can I try? I don't think it can be the MagSafe board since my computer has been fine working on the charger, (other than he battery randomly not being recognized)

...and I don't have an external display to test with.

I've already suggested some things:

- SMC Reset (you mentioned no success)
- DC-In Board (You feel it is not this)…but who knows??
- Battery could be defective (you didn't address this)
- External Display (you don't have one)

If you don't have the "tools" to troubleshoot further…to see if we can figure things out…then you have 2 choices:

1. Pay a lot of money to have it repaired.
2. Buy a new computer.

I would suggest purchasing a cheap used external monitor to test with. Or find someone you can borrow an external monitor from.

Can't do much else unless the suggested troubleshooting ideas are fully explored.:)

- Nick
 

pigoo3

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But buying a new computer isn't an option...and a new logic board would probably be cheaper than replacing the laptop, since the apple store told me that a new board would be like $500. I've never seen a mid 2010 17" with anti glare go that low.

If the logic board is bad…this may be the solution. But…$500 for the repair + what you can sell the computer for…equals the amount of cash you have for a new computer (which will be more than $500)…and maybe enough to get a newer & better used computer (or a brand new one if you decided on that with additional cash).

- Nick
 
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Well, I definitely will be calling owc when they are open tomorrow to ask about a replacement battery...but it is kind of odd if it is indeed a bad battery, since it did work fine the past 3 weeks until I had to do that hard reset. What are some of the signs of a failing logic board though? Even though apple didn't run any tests, that's the other possibility they told me it could be.
 

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What are some of the signs of a failing logic board though?

You must realize that if the keyboard, trackpad, display, sound, optical drive, ram, DC-In board are working fine…there's not that much else inside of the computer…other than the logic board.

So if anything else is wrong…things start pointing strongly towards the logic board. Many of the things I suggested looking into are non-logic board potential problem areas. If all of these other areas are proved working fine…then this leads things closer & closer to it being the logic board.

This is why you much explore them. Since you don't want to do a $500 logic board replacement…and still have the problem.

- Nick
 
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Faulty battery i wouldn't use a owc battery they fail like crazy and display bad charging information which can damage your machine so have fun
 
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Unfortunately, when these beauties run all is good but when there are random problems, finding it or them and fixing them can make Sherlock Holmes put his hair out.

Just an idea - I work in IT for a church. We get a lot of desktops donated but very rarely get monitors, We have found a local pawn shop that has them for $15 to $25 and they are flat screens. Nothing fancy but for a test monitor it is a cheap alternative if you can't find one to borrow.

Lisa
 
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Yeah, it was definitely the battery. I put in the old apple one just like the genius bar told me to, and I haven't had that odd error. So this is a lesson learned the hard way...don't bother with 3rd party ANYTHING! Even if you go with a so called "reputable" source like owc, it isn't worth the aggravation of dealing with it when it doesn't work.

For people who find this on search engines...please learn from my mistake and don't bother with ANY third party battery, including OWC. Even if you receive a defective product like I did, YOU need to pay for return shipping and likely their restocking fee too. And THAT is assuming you are still in the 30 day window for a refund, so good luck getting your money back after that as OWC's customer support told me they give refunds after that "on a case by case basis." (meaning you are probably screwed if you find out too late you have a bad product!) I know it sucks to pay almost $200 including tax for a laptop battery from apple, but that's still less than a new logic board should the third party battery cause damage!
 
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chas_m

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Good to know the Genius Bar was correct, at least. Send OWC the details, they will likely make good. They are a very reputable company.
 
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Glad you figured out the problem. Sorry you had to spend the $200 for a new battery. Still cheaper than a new logic board. Hopefully OWC will make good on a refund.

Lisa
 

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Who knows.... seems like he had bad luck. We rarely if ever hear about a problem with something purchased from OWC; not that they're perfect, but they do stock quality parts including batteries. We've even had members who purchased a replacement battery from an eBay seller for $25 - $40 who stated the battery worked great - no problems.

What I'm saying is let's not be quick to condemn third party retailers based on one or two incidents. I personally would have no problem buying a battery from OWC. ;)
 

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