Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Mar 13, 2013, 02:27 PM   #1
hackerwayne
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Possibly a prototype/fake MacBook Air? Update! It has a Core i3!

Umm.. Today i received a MacBook Air from a customer, he said the MBA can't power on and wanted to sell it as parts. So i bought the laptop from him. I tried to plug the MagSafe in and attempted to boot it, it shows no sign of life. MagSafe shows orange. Upon inspection, i see nothing odd about this MacBook, thinking that its a 2010 model since it doesn't have the backlit button. But then once i opened up the bottom case, i was shocked to find the board wasn't a C2D board, it has a thunderbolt controller on it and the SSD is 256GB, the battery is damaged/bloated. When i dig deeper, i found that the back panel has no serial number, and EMC number is left blank. Im in the process of replacing the battery. Ill update with pictures later. The logic board is black in color.

UPDATE!!!!!

I MANAGE TO START THE MACBOOK AIR WITH A REPLACEMENT BATTERY AND AFTER A SMC UPDATE & SMC RESET!
However, the original SSD seems to be dead. EFI showing can't find boot drive, and i can't boot ML installer, don't know why. It just showed a prohibited sign, and so i replaced it with another SSD(that has ML already on it) I WAS NOT ABLE TO BOOT IT DIRECTLY, it shows a prohibited sign, so i had to remove PlatformSupport.plist (like my hack guide) to get it to boot. Apparently, the board ID wasn't on the platformsupport.plist.

Booted it up. and wtf?! It has a i3 1.5GHz, never seen it on a Air before, and has NO SERIAL NUMBER. See pictures.

The Backlit keyboard looks crappy comparing to a standard 2011 MacBook Air. Again, see the pictures.

About This Mac.


Screenshot

Backlit keyboard compared to standard 2011 MacBook Air.
Standard one on the left, unknown one on the right.


Different angle showing the backlit keyboard. I have NO way of adjusting the backlit, it doesn't have the backlit keys. I turned off the lights to take this picture.

Close up on the keyboard, looks similar to the one on the 2010 MacBook Air, except this has backlit.


Apparently it shows its a Core i3 1.5GHz. I don't think that processor was ever used on a standard 13" MacBook Air. Only i5 or i7.

UPDATE! March 14 2013.

I took the board out for inspection, at first glance it look similar to a 2011 i5 MacBook Air, but then at close examinations, some of the connectors are not exactly the same. Keyboard flex connector is larger then a normal i5 one.

No serial number on the inside too.


Motherboard pictures. (I haven't put back all the screws yet)
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819

Last edited by hackerwayne; Mar 14, 2013 at 03:34 PM.
hackerwayne is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 03:40 PM   #2
Mrbobb
macrumors 601
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Or maybe a Chinese Fake!
__________________
Solution: FREE, Explanation: Is gonna cost ya.
Mrbobb is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 03:49 PM   #3
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrbobb View Post
Or maybe a Chinese Fake!
It runs OSX natively, has EFI. But hard to say.
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 04:24 PM   #4
sundragon
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Washington, DC
There's something wrong with this.

Your F4 Key is not standard on the 2011-2012 MBA (I'm typing on it).
sundragon is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 04:43 PM   #5
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by sundragon View Post
There's something wrong with this.

Your F4 Key is not standard on the 2011-2012 MBA (I'm typing on it).
It doesn't have the backlit control keys too. I can't control the backlit. It also has a "Eject" key.
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 05:03 PM   #6
jmoore5196
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: London
Given your location, I'd say its more likely to be a Chinese knockoff than a prototype. The quality issues you see do not "ring true" for a genuine Apple product ... especially one as critical to Apple's laptop line than the 2010-generation MBA.
jmoore5196 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 05:20 PM   #7
mike5411
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
When you had the machine open, what color was the logic board? Was it green or red?
mike5411 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 05:30 PM   #8
Brian Y
macrumors 68000
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
To pour some water on it - it's identifying itself as a 4,2 which is a mid 2011 MacBook Air. By that time, the keyboard would have had brightness controls.

Also, it has a 1.5GHz i3 with Intel HD 3000 graphics, this can be one of two chips:

- i3-2375M (launched Q1 '13)
- i3-2377M (launched Q2 '12)

Which would make it impossible/impractical to be a prototype. If you have a closeup photo of the MLB we can check it.
Brian Y is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 06:37 PM   #9
iMacC2D
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Has the Serial Number been blanked out from the screenshots, or does it actually not have a serial number? If it does have one, I may be able to check whether it validates as a recognised serial and if it has any listed specs or details at the time of manufacture. (I'm an Apple Repairer by trade, but not working for Apple.)

EDIT: Oh, right. No serial number. I'm taking a quick glance at this over lunch so I missed that part.

If you managed to install Mac OS X with no other modification than to remove or tweak PlatformSupport.plist, I'd be inclined to think it's a genuine Apple board at this stage.

A photo of the board may also be useful in identification. A screenshot of the "Memory" section of System Profiler may also be useful in checking whether the on-board RAM identifies as Apple supplied memory.

If I can be of assistance just let me know.
__________________
Apple Certified Mac Technician (10 Years Exp. 3.5 Years Certified)
Current Machine: MacBook Air (Mid 2012) - 1.8GHz i5 / 8GB Mem. / 512GB SSD

Last edited by iMacC2D; Mar 14, 2013 at 12:47 AM.
iMacC2D is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 07:05 PM   #10
Mrbobb
macrumors 601
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Backlit keyb except u can't see see what key is what.
__________________
Solution: FREE, Explanation: Is gonna cost ya.
Mrbobb is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 10:09 PM   #11
dbroncos78087
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Northern Virginia
Was the i3 available as an "upgrade" when they had the dual core?

I don't know enough to say they weren't but it might have been an upgrade at the time.

But it is odd that yours doesn't show a serial number is very suspicious.
__________________
13" MacBook Air Mid-2012: 1.8 GHz i5, 4 GB RAM, 128 GB SSD
Mac Mini Late-2012: 2.3 GHz i7, 16 GB RAM, 1 TB HD
iPhone 5, black: 32 GB
iPad Mini Retina, white: 16 GB
dbroncos78087 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 13, 2013, 11:57 PM   #12
shenan1982
macrumors 68000
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
It's from Malaysia, enough said.... (Fake)
shenan1982 is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 12:28 AM   #13
raniel
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ph
Made in china. haha
__________________
I used to be indecisive, but now i'm not so sure.
raniel is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 12:44 AM   #14
iMacC2D
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Quote:
Originally Posted by shenan1982 View Post
It's from Malaysia, enough said.... (Fake)
Then it's a very good fake. If what the OP has stated is correct, it booted into Mac OS X once the board identifier check was stripped out (OS X Mountain Lion won't boot on a board it won't recognise, such as an EVT/DVT board or earlier Intel - this is a common solution), with full driver support for WiFi, Bluetooth, the Intel HD 3000 graphics accelerator... all visible and detected as present and functional in the screenshot.

Not suggesting it isn't a fake unit, but I would like to see more before drawing a conclusion. At the moment, it's impossible to be sure either way. Perhaps it's an unusual hybrid of Apple and non-Apple components. Who knows.

It's rare for pre-production units to turn up outside of the US, but it's by no means impossible. The curious side of me is intrigued.
__________________
Apple Certified Mac Technician (10 Years Exp. 3.5 Years Certified)
Current Machine: MacBook Air (Mid 2012) - 1.8GHz i5 / 8GB Mem. / 512GB SSD
iMacC2D is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 01:10 AM   #15
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by iMacC2D View Post
Has the Serial Number been blanked out from the screenshots, or does it actually not have a serial number? If it does have one, I may be able to check whether it validates as a recognised serial and if it has any listed specs or details at the time of manufacture. (I'm an Apple Repairer by trade, but not working for Apple.)

EDIT: Oh, right. No serial number. I'm taking a quick glance at this over lunch so I missed that part.

If you managed to install Mac OS X with no other modification than to remove or tweak PlatformSupport.plist, I'd be inclined to think it's a genuine Apple board at this stage.

A photo of the board may also be useful in identification. A screenshot of the "Memory" section of System Profiler may also be useful in checking whether the on-board RAM identifies as Apple supplied memory.

If I can be of assistance just let me know.
Heres the memory section of System Profiler


----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by shenan1982 View Post
It's from Malaysia, enough said.... (Fake)
Title changed. Im in the process of contacting the previous owner asking him where this this thing come from.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike5411 View Post
When you had the machine open, what color was the logic board? Was it green or red?
Board is black. Ill take some pics now
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 12:13 PM   #16
Brian Y
macrumors 68000
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by hackerwayne View Post

Board is black. Ill take some pics now
If the board is black (or very dark grey/green) - then it isn't a prototype. Apple's prototype boards are red.

Also, that RAM is identified as being made by Samsung. I believe (may be wrong since I'm going by experience here), I've never seen Apple use any soldered-on ram that wasn't Hynix.
Brian Y is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 12:38 PM   #17
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Update. Ive taken the motherboard out to inspect. It looks fairly similar comparing to 2011 i5 model, except a few connectors are not the same
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 02:16 PM   #18
mike5411
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by hackerwayne View Post
Heres the memory section of System Profiler
Image

----------



Title changed. Im in the process of contacting the previous owner asking him where this this thing come from.

----------



Board is black. Ill take some pics now
Very interesting that the board is black (or maybe a very dark green?). Typically prototypes have red logic boards from Apple. However, maybe this is a very very late prototype that Apple actually cut at the last minute?
mike5411 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 03:36 PM   #19
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike5411 View Post
Very interesting that the board is black (or maybe a very dark green?). Typically prototypes have red logic boards from Apple. However, maybe this is a very very late prototype that Apple actually cut at the last minute?
See pictures. I posted the board pics

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
If the board is black (or very dark grey/green) - then it isn't a prototype. Apple's prototype boards are red.

Also, that RAM is identified as being made by Samsung. I believe (may be wrong since I'm going by experience here), I've never seen Apple use any soldered-on ram that wasn't Hynix.
See board pic
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 14, 2013, 07:09 PM   #20
mike5411
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Does it have USB 2.0 or 3.0?
mike5411 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 2013, 12:21 AM   #21
laserbeam273
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Australia
When you're done inspecting, list it on eBay as a rare prototype! Starting bid $5,000!
__________________
2012 15" MBPr 2.6 GHz i7, 8 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD - OS X Mavericks
iPhone 4S 64 GB
laserbeam273 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 2013, 10:06 AM   #22
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike5411 View Post
Does it have USB 2.0 or 3.0?
Forgot to mention it has USB 3 but its MagSafe 1

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
To pour some water on it - it's identifying itself as a 4,2 which is a mid 2011 MacBook Air. By that time, the keyboard would have had brightness controls.

Also, it has a 1.5GHz i3 with Intel HD 3000 graphics, this can be one of two chips:

- i3-2375M (launched Q1 '13)
- i3-2377M (launched Q2 '12)

Which would make it impossible/impractical to be a prototype. If you have a closeup photo of the MLB we can check it.
It has USB 3.0. 2011 MBA doesn't have that
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 2013, 11:01 AM   #23
mike5411
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by hackerwayne View Post
Forgot to mention it has USB 3 but its MagSafe 1

----------



It has USB 3.0. 2011 MBA doesn't have that
I had a feeling it was going to be USB 3.0. Although the logic board isn't red, I am still thinking this is a prototype in a 2010 shell. Very interesting. Have you heard anything back from the seller regarding where they acquired this machine?
mike5411 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 2013, 12:03 PM   #24
hackerwayne
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
hackerwayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Send a message via MSN to hackerwayne Send a message via Skype™ to hackerwayne
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike5411 View Post
I had a feeling it was going to be USB 3.0. Although the logic board isn't red, I am still thinking this is a prototype in a 2010 shell. Very interesting. Have you heard anything back from the seller regarding where they acquired this machine?
At first when i tried to contact him, I asked him where did he get this unit, was it a fake or what. he picked up and said he don't know much history about this unit, he got it from a friend for cheap, then he said he got another Air so wasn't interested in fixing this unit. Now when i tried to contact him, he's unreachable. Quite suspicious.
__________________
Octo MP, MacMini 06, 13" MBA, iMac 06, rMBP13, iP4S
Hobby: Hacker, Creator of MLPostFactor
Life: Repair & Salvage Macs
Quote: Nothing is impossible. Twitter: @Wayne_819
hackerwayne is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 2013, 12:24 PM   #25
thadoggfather
macrumors 68030
 
thadoggfather's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Wouldn't it be a tremendous amount of effort and talent to make a 'fake MBA'?

'fake iPhones' are very easily distinguishable from the real deal.

Still, maybe just maybe he stopped replying because aren't there legal implications involved with selling a prototype?

Like I dunno, the whole iPhone 4 at the bar sold to a jouranlist-type fiasco?

Even though this is well beyond the announcement of the 2010 MBA re-design and didn't become the end all leak.
thadoggfather is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:13 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC