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View Full Version : Should I return my new Powerbook 15?




Neo-Maikeru
Dec 27, 2005, 06:01 PM
Just before I walked out of the door the other day to buy a Powerbook I read the thread on this forum talking about the horizontal line problem with many of the new revision of the Powerbook 15. After reading I was a bit more cautious before buying my laptop at the Apple Store. I looked at all three Powerbook's side by side up close and couldn't see much of a line problem with any of them. I was expecting much worse after reading all of the commotion stirred up on various forums. I ended up buying a Powerbook 15 and love the design, OS, etc.(This is my first Mac). Now that I have this "horizontal line" thing in my head though I always look for lines when I view any photo and it is annoying me quite a bit, I dont want to be even debating this in my head, lol. It is hindering my enjoyment even though I am not even sure if my monitor has a problem or not just by knowing that mine may have the problem. If I have my face pratically touching the screen I can see some lines but the same goes for many LCD displays that I look at up close. I really love the laptop and wish that I never read about the problem because I doubt that I would ever notice anything or look for anything of the sort otherwise. I really do not want to return it since I am not sure if the rep will even see the lines since I am not sure about them myself, and will more than likely charge me a re-stocking fee. I also have Apple Care for it and I am not sure if I can transfer that to a new Powerbook if I decided to exchange for a different one. My other problem is that I need a laptop now, I love the 15, the 17 is too big, and the 12 is too underpowered.

Point is...I can't wait longer for new models, I love the 15, and I wish I never read about the line issues since I would be not bouncing back and forth about this issue in my head for hours.



Daedalus256
Dec 27, 2005, 06:10 PM
I think you should stop being so paranoid about the lines thing and enjoy your new pbook. :)

I've heard that the ordeal is being blown out of proportion anyway so I wouldn't worry too much about it.

MattG
Dec 27, 2005, 06:21 PM
Don't worry about it and enjoy your computer.

MacFan26
Dec 27, 2005, 06:22 PM
I just decided to keep mine. The line issue I don't think was blown out of proportion, but perhaps calling the computer a "POS" because of it was a little excessive. It only bothers me when I'm looking at it, and with a little contrast/color manipulation it can be lessened a bit. I'm of course hoping there will be some "fix" in the future, but for now, it wasn't worth it for me to return it.

runninmac
Dec 27, 2005, 06:25 PM
If it was me I would keep it, especially because Im not to sure how the applecare works, it could end up being a huge headache if you decide to return it. Just have fun with it and don't worry about what Steve has up his sleeve (I know, easier said than done)

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 27, 2005, 06:26 PM
I could return it and get a 12 inch one but I am not even sure if the rep's there will be able to see the lines, I mean you have to be VERY anal to see them, I am not even sure if mine has them or not. The 12 is nice too and maybe better for me since I move around a lot but the thing that turns me off is the graphics card and the hotter surface.

mklos
Dec 27, 2005, 06:43 PM
I would stick to the PowerBook you have currently. If can't see the lines from a normal usage distance then taking it back to Apple will only cause you headaches and a bad reputation on your part of Apple. The 15" PowerBook has a lot of nice features that the 12" PB doesn't have like a better graphics, backlit keyboard, thinner, faster CPU, more HD space, etc... If you get a 12" PowerBook, you're basically getting a 12" iBook in an aluminum case as they pretty much have the same specs.

kwajaln
Dec 27, 2005, 07:50 PM
I am not even sure if mine has them or not
Is there at least one of the voices in your head telling you to keep the 15-incher? Because that's what you should do, and start enjoying it like Daedalus256 posted. No-Brainer!!

pianodude123
Dec 27, 2005, 08:05 PM
no, keep it...you will regret not having it. Get attached to it...BTW, 1st gen intels wont be out till summer, and they will be faulty first gens....yours is the most refined powerbook made...the last gen

MacFan26
Dec 27, 2005, 08:40 PM
....yours is the most refined powerbook made...the last gen
the most refined with the worst screen :confused:

MacNut
Dec 27, 2005, 08:52 PM
the most refined with the worst screen :confused:Id say the white spots on the first 15 inch Al was worse.

Deepdale
Dec 27, 2005, 09:47 PM
If I have my face pratically touching the screen I can see some lines but the same goes for many LCD displays that I look at up close.

The quoted excerpt is the key point here ... if one has to be that close to the screen for the problem to even be detectable, you are doing yourself a major disservice by continuing to fret over the issue.

I'll agree that others have pointed this out for a reason, but you are allowing yourself to be unduly influenced by prior messages you've read. Bottom line: It seems to clearly fall within your personal comfort zone and you concede that other LCD's would yield a similar faint line. It would be best to make peace with it and enjoy your PB to the maximum.

MacFan26
Dec 27, 2005, 10:33 PM
Id say the white spots on the first 15 inch Al was worse.
True, didn't Apple fix that though?

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 27, 2005, 10:57 PM
Well I ended up returning it tonite. I am just going to wait for a while and see if Apple fixes it in a new release or something. I would hate to have had it past the return date, only to see that a new version of the 15 is released with a better screen. The apple guy told me that when he looked the problem up on apple he said he saw a message stating that "apple is working on the issue" so hopefully there will be a new screen put in them soon. If no screen fix comes though I will most likely just get another 15, the lines didn't bother me much it was just that once they were pointed out to me every time I looked at the screen I got mad since I dropped $2,000+ on the machine. I hope it all works out for me soon.

MacNut
Dec 27, 2005, 11:04 PM
Ok first off, if Apple was aware of the problem Im sure they would of fixed it for you just like they did with the spots on the al books. Second if you were not bothered by the lines why did you let others get you upset over them, if it was that much of an issue it must of bothered you. It might be a while before Apple fixes the issue and even longer before you see Intel books so if that is what you are hopping for you will have a long wait.

ryan42
Dec 27, 2005, 11:42 PM
Definately just enjoy your PowerBook. As with all uniform screen anormalities (lines in a Trinitron, etc) you'll get used to it after a while (at least in my experience.)

Deepdale
Dec 27, 2005, 11:49 PM
The apple guy told me that when he looked the problem up on apple he said he saw a message stating that "apple is working on the issue"

Looking into it is fine, but has Apple ever acknowledged publicly that there is a problem with the lines on some 15" PB screens?

DIXIE
Dec 27, 2005, 11:51 PM
A thought that has been bugging me, since there apparently has been a considerable number of 15"PBs returned for refund or exchange; NOT "repaired". What happens to those retained PBs by Apple?

Are they recycled for parts, held for a possible future fix then resold as a "Refurbished, or I dread saying this: cleaned-up & repackaged as new?

Anybody have specific Apple policy knowledge? Have not seen this matter mentioned anywhere in the forums.

:confused: :(

DIXIE

runninmac
Dec 28, 2005, 12:01 AM
Just wondering about something with your powerbook.

When did you get it? Im assuming it was opened (since you saw the screen) so was there a restocking fee? How long is the return period?

runninmac
Dec 28, 2005, 12:01 AM
God not again delete this please... I really need to get use to this iBooks mouse button. Sorry

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 28, 2005, 12:13 AM
Just wondering about something with your powerbook.

When did you get it? Im assuming it was opened (since you saw the screen) so was there a restocking fee? How long is the return period?

I just got my Powerbook on December 26th(yesterday). It was opened but there was no restocking fee that I had to pay. The apple "genius" inspected my powerbook and I showed him a few pictures posted here that pointed out the horizontal line problem. He then looked at other 15's in the store on display to compare with mine and said something like "I see this problem in all of our 15's, its because we use different screens, I wouldn't call this a defect since it is not only your screen but the entire line of new rev. Powerbook 15's. I think you will still need to pay the restocking fee because your Powerbook 15 is no different from the other Powerbook 15's." There was no way I was going to pay a restocking fee to Apple for this though so I just acted a bit frustrated and talked to him some more and he got the manager to wave the restocking fee for me. The manager was awsome, she even let me return my apple care even though the box was open(though not activated yet). I got very lucky that I found a store full of nice and understanding employees.

I found that the best picture for displaying the line issue is the black and white line pic posted in an earlier thread here. Just showing them the blue apple default desktop probably will not do it for them since the lines are very subtle and hard to notice against it in my opinion. The black and white stripe picture clearly shows how every other row of pixels is lighter than the other.

Edit: Here is the picture I used: http://www.cameraid.com/art/quadrants.gif

Notice how the bottom two squares look the same but the top two look different from each other while viewing them on most a new-rev. Powerbook 15's. The reason for this is because the top left square has the black row of pixels one row above the black row of pixels on the top right square. This shows how every other row of pixels is a bit brighter which is what makes these lines from my understanding. I never noticed the lines until I looked at this picture on my now returned Powerbook 15 and then on my brother in law's new Dell LCD. It made the problem pretty evident.

Deepdale
Dec 28, 2005, 12:13 AM
When did you get it? Im assuming it was opened (since you saw the screen) so was there a restocking fee? How long is the return period?

Not sure as to the restocking fee and return policy, but his original post was dated 12-27-05 and he began by saying that he bought it a few days prior. Since he did return it yesterday, it was probably 3-4 days old.

Deepdale
Dec 28, 2005, 12:24 AM
... he got the manager to wave the restocking fee for me. The manager was awsome, she even let me return my apple care even though the box was open (though not activated yet).

It is good your situation ended the way it did because I have overheard people facing that same restocking fee getting into lengthy and sometimes vocal discussions with store employees, and some did not fare as well as you. Hope your next PB turns out to be pixel perfect.

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 28, 2005, 12:32 AM
It is good your situation ended the way it did because I have overheard people facing that same restocking fee getting into lengthy and sometimes vocal discussions with store employees, and some did not fare as well as you. Hope your next PB turns out to be pixel perfect.

I am pretty sure that anything bought from one Apple Store can be returned to another. If one store doesn't work for someone there are always other stores to try out. If anyone is in San Diego the store I went to was the Apple Store in the UNC Mall right near Scrips Hospital. Great people in there. I was a bit worried at first after the tech guy there told me I would probably need to pay a restocking fee but I the manager in there saw my problem and was great about it. It is a shame I do not know her name since I know there are probably multiple managers in there.

As for me at the moment I am computerless. I do not want to get another 15 since I know it will probably have the same problem and I got pretty lucky being able to return it this first time and all w.o much hassle. School does not start for me until January 7th though so I do not need a new laptop quite yet. I can manage to use the library computers until some announcements are made.

ortuno2k
Dec 28, 2005, 12:44 AM
Neo,
This is exactly the way I've been feeling about my new 15" PB all week, ever since I unpacked it (I got mine 12/19)
I'm still debating whether to return it or not, but so far I really like the damn thing. The backlit keyboard is very nice, and the PB it's fast for what I do, and great resolution. Like you, I only see the lines if I get real close to the screen or pull up some pictures. Faces in pictures are generally easier to show the lines, but normal browsing, emailing, iTunes and such doesn't show any lines. I was even watching a movie last night on it and there were no visible lines at all.
I agree, that after reading about the horizontal lines issue it made me very paranoid, and from really craving this machine for months, now I have doubts on whether to keep it or not.
If I hadn't read about it, I would not have seen it or thought it was a problem. I'm thinking about keeping mine, but still haven't really made it "mine" 'cause I haven't copied all my stuff to it yet. I'm still using my iMac for most of my stuff (even typing this) but I got to get myself to use the PB more often.
I think I'm keeping mine but still a bit unsure. Why let other unhappy people ruin our moment?
Good luck with your decision. :)

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 28, 2005, 12:59 AM
Neo,
This is exactly the way I've been feeling about my new 15" PB all week, ever since I unpacked it (I got mine 12/19)
I'm still debating whether to return it or not, but so far I really like the damn thing. The backlit keyboard is very nice, and the PB it's fast for what I do, and great resolution. Like you, I only see the lines if I get real close to the screen or pull up some pictures. Faces in pictures are generally easier to show the lines, but normal browsing, emailing, iTunes and such doesn't show any lines. I was even watching a movie last night on it and there were no visible lines at all.
I agree, that after reading about the horizontal lines issue it made me very paranoid, and from really craving this machine for months, now I have doubts on whether to keep it or not.
If I hadn't read about it, I would not have seen it or thought it was a problem. I'm thinking about keeping mine, but still haven't really made it "mine" 'cause I haven't copied all my stuff to it yet. I'm still using my iMac for most of my stuff (even typing this) but I got to get myself to use the PB more often.
I think I'm keeping mine but still a bit unsure. Why let other unhappy people ruin our moment?
Good luck with your decision. :)

Well my decision has already been made, I returned it. Even though I do not do graphics work it was still bothering me just knowning that the problem was there after reading the thread. The lines were not hurting my eyes but me knowing that I have an inferior screen to other powerbooks was, considering I just plunked down $2,000 for it. It is a shame because like you, I really love the machine. If you are having doubts about it yourself and are constantly thinking about it like you said you are I would do yourself a favor and return yours as well. No sense in not having a clear head about your purchase. You paid good money for it, you should not have to put up with debating things in your head, you should be in a totally positive state of mind about your purchase in my opinion. This is why I returned in the end, thinking about the screen issue of my Powerbook gave me a huge headache. I know that if a new rev. comes out and the screen problem is fixed I would be kicking myself if I hadn't returned mine. I felt pretty relieved after returning since I could finally stop thinking about the stupid screen. LOL.

ortuno2k
Dec 28, 2005, 01:39 AM
Thanks for your thoughts Neo.
Like you said, it really sucks to drop $2,000 for a new PB and have a defective screen, or even if not technically defective, still not perfect to you. And that's what really matters, that you (the buyer) is completely happy with it. Obviously, we are not happy with such a computer. It's still in my head "the lines are there." But my other side of the brain says "Yea, but you don't see them now, do ya..punk?" :D

Oh well, still debating. I'm afraid if I return it I might blow the cash on trivial stuff and miss the chance of owning a laptop for a long time, but I'd hate myself forever if I keep a defective (to my eyes) laptop.

Thanks :)

Neo-Maikeru
Dec 28, 2005, 01:48 AM
Thanks for your thoughts Neo.
Like you said, it really sucks to drop $2,000 for a new PB and have a defective screen, or even if not technically defective, still not perfect to you. And that's what really matters, that you (the buyer) is completely happy with it. Obviously, we are not happy with such a computer. It's still in my head "the lines are there." But my other side of the brain says "Yea, but you don't see them now, do ya..punk?" :D

Oh well, still debating. I'm afraid if I return it I might blow the cash on trivial stuff and miss the chance of owning a laptop for a long time, but I'd hate myself forever if I keep a defective (to my eyes) laptop.

Thanks :)

After reading this post of yours it seems pretty clear to me that the best thing for you to do is to return your Powerbook 15 and get a different model or wait for a new revision to come out. Don't keep something that you will regret not returning. If you are afraid of spending the money on trivial things then put the money into a savings account or purchase a Mac giftcard with it so you can't spend it anywhere else. If you end up returning it be sure to show them the picture that I linked in this thread, it was very helpful for me when I returned mine today.

Sic
Dec 28, 2005, 08:31 AM
i had the same dilemma as you and decided not to return it as i have faith that apple are going to sort it, and the computer is perfect except for the screen anomaly. i've spoken to apple customer sevices several times about it, and because i have logged my problem early on and gotten myself a reference, i have been told on a number of occasions that i'll be allowed to return it if they dont find a fix. i personally dont see how they won't though. even if it's going to be a case of everyone who cares gets a new screen.

Deepdale
Dec 28, 2005, 09:00 AM
I just spoke with a co-worker who bought a 15" PB two weeks ago and asked him for his assessment of things. He said, "It is great in all respects and I could not be happier." He did not detect any problem with the screen.

tristan
Dec 28, 2005, 01:28 PM
I was just about to buy a couple weeks ago when I found out about the line problem and then went to Apple Store to see it for myself. I ended up buying a refurb older model from smalldog, which I'm very very happy with. The price was great, and the machine is awesome - I use it every day and love it. It's definitely an option to consider.

Nspace
Dec 28, 2005, 07:16 PM
If you have the option still I would most definitely return it if you were not satisfied. Apple charges enough for their products, I'd expect the screens to be in perfect working condition without any problems. I was quite agrivated when I had to get my screen replaced and only found the new screen to contain a dead pixel. Of course I couldn't do anything about but at least you have that option.

BENJMNS
Dec 29, 2005, 01:19 AM
I'm all right with the scan lines and some of the black bars really... i would've never noticed if i didn't run into these threads.

but the thing is, if i ever plan on selling this unit and i probably will in the future, i don't want this to become the black listed units... like oh do you have the scan line 15" hi res version? as if it's the one to avoid. especially if apple doesn't provide a fix.

i don't like the 17" display because it's not nearly as bright as the 15" hi res. even if it did jump 45% from the outgoing 17" model. it also suffers a great deal from just fading at diff angles whereas the 15" hi res is much more consistent.

would i rather have the hi res with the scan lines and black lines than the lower resolution 15"? Hell yes.

pubwvj
Dec 29, 2005, 12:35 PM
My PowerBook 15 arrived yesterday. I bought now rather than waiting as I need a PPC notebook. No lines on the screen. It's beautiful - sharp and bright. I'm happy!

Chkalov
Dec 30, 2005, 11:38 AM
I am received my new PowerBook 2 days ago. It was produced on 52 week and IT HAS LINES! I can see them on all pictures that I look, even on the desktop. I am very unhappy and return it back to the Apple.

Victor.

GoCubsGo
Dec 30, 2005, 12:29 PM
I think you should stop being so paranoid about the lines thing and enjoy your new pbook. :)

I've heard that the ordeal is being blown out of proportion anyway so I wouldn't worry too much about it.

Agreed.

ortuno2k
Dec 30, 2005, 03:14 PM
Besides having faint lines, I also noticed that mine has also a dead pixel; possibly two. They are noticeable with a dark background, and I found it while running the flurry screen saver.

http://www.ortunox.com/images/deadpixel.jpg

Even though the dead pixel isn't noticeable 99% of the time, it's there!
Two things wrong with my screen, but I sure love this PB... maybe enough to make me keep it.
Who knows what else may show up wrong with it.

DIXIE
Dec 31, 2005, 08:35 AM
ortuno2k: try this Pixel Help download .... read instructions first.

(instructions):cool:
"Instead of just clicking the link, CTRL-click and download the file. Then open, set it to loop in View menu of Quicktime, and place the window behind the stuck pixel (you can resize it). It rapidly cycles through many colors/shades, and the idea is that it can force a stuck pixel to change."

http://itasor.com/pixelmurder.mov

Maybe you'll get lucky!!! ;)

DIXIE :) :)

sbb155
Dec 31, 2005, 03:37 PM
"shoud i RETURN IT"

answer: YES

And rebuy intel macs when out

you will thank us in a few years

BENJMNS
Dec 31, 2005, 05:51 PM
"shoud i RETURN IT"

answer: YES

And rebuy intel macs when out

you will thank us in a few years

wtf?

when's it coming out? you sure first-time notebooks won't come with their own set of issues? time is money

generik
Dec 31, 2005, 08:25 PM
wtf?

when's it coming out? you sure first-time notebooks won't come with their own set of issues? time is money

Time is money? Then buy something else, today.

Your time certainly is worth a lot, not everyone can afford to spend 2 grand on a lemon just because he is in a hurry.

MacNut
Dec 31, 2005, 09:03 PM
You can wait and wait and keep returning but Im sure there will always be a flaw of some sort in whatever you buy, Buying computers is like russian roulette you might win and you might lose. If you wait for every problem to be fixed you will never end up buying anything cause nothing is ever perfect.

ortuno2k
Jan 1, 2006, 07:24 PM
You can wait and wait and keep returning but Im sure there will always be a flaw of some sort in whatever you buy, Buying computers is like russian roulette you might win and you might lose. If you wait for every problem to be fixed you will never end up buying anything cause nothing is ever perfect.

This is exactly the same way I was thinking on my drive home today.
We're not happy with anything we get these days. Why scrutinize a product so much that makes us "make" defects on the product where others see none. My girlfriend couldn't see the horizontal lines or the dead pixel, which only shows on a black background.
I've decided to keep my PowerBook with its dead pixel and faint horizontal lines. I can't see either one unless I really look for it.
Who knows if I return it and get another what the next one may bring? How about more dead pixels or really bad lines? How about DOA or anything else that could be wrong with any electronic product.
If I start thinking about defects... let's see. My iMac has a shade that the dock has created at the bottom of the screen. Is that a reason to sell it and buy a new one?
My brand new car got a few scratches during the last hurricane here in FL (Wilma). Should I go return the car or buy a paint job for it?
My life isn't perfect. Should I go return it and get a new one?
I think, MacNut, you're right. We should settle for what we have.
Thank you for your post.

liquidh2o
Jan 1, 2006, 08:05 PM
If it were my money and there problems with the powerbook, I would return it. It's a big investment of $$$, and you should "get what you pay for."

BENJMNS
Jan 2, 2006, 12:24 AM
Time is money? Then buy something else, today.

Your time certainly is worth a lot, not everyone can afford to spend 2 grand on a lemon just because he is in a hurry.

dude that's what i'm telling him to do; not to waste time waiting for something that's not proven just yet

tribe3
Jan 2, 2006, 10:27 AM
Returning the PB because you hate the screen is coherent, but there are only very few people on this and other forums that first detected the problem -on their own- and decided that this screen was not for them. Than there's a big group that were perfectly happy with their PBooks until they read that others were not!...:rolleyes: Holly Jesus... Some people really need to work on some sides of their personality.

All your electronics and/or highly complex stuff are going to have a flaw somewhere; and you will find the flaws if you look hard enough or read enough about it. From the most expensive Pro DSLR camera to the most sophisticated audio equipment, and also your brand new Mercedes-Benz. In all the forums of all subjects you're going to find persons using and enjoying their stuff and others taking it back to the dealer every week for some new hitch that they found or read about.

My screen, like all other new PB's have the lines indeed. But they virtually go away with a 10 seconds calibration of the LCD and in the end I'm the happy owner of a beautiful machine that has too many good features to list, and ALSO a VERY nice screen ;) The extra real estate makes a big difference when working on my photos.

My condolences to those of you who deprived them selves of this great machine -even liking it- just because a small bunch of obsessed say that it's a POS.