dark screen

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by zorba199, Jan 22, 2007.

  1. zorba199 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    #1
    The screen to my IBook G4 has gone completely dark. What's wrong?
     
  2. Reflow macrumors 68000

    Reflow

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    Mar 30, 2005
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    NJ/PHL
    #2
    Can you see anything on it? Did you adjust your screen settings?
     
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #3
    Try the brightness keys on the upper left of the keyboard (they're among the first few function keys). Maybe you held one down by accident?
     
  4. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #4
    Nope, it's not an issue of brightness. It just starts up all dark, no apple logo no nothing. I tried all kinds of startup options, pressing different keys, nothing helps. It's dark, when it goes to sleep mode it's dark but somhow a light is shining in the background. The hd is running all the time though. From all that I've read so far it must be either the backlight or the logicboard...
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
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    #5
    Just a dumb question, but when you start it up, and it's dark, but there's the "light shining in the background," if you look at the back -- the white plastic surface of the lid -- is the apple logo on it lit up or dark?
     
  6. mick4394 macrumors 6502a

    mick4394

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    Flyover country
    #6
    Sounds like a classic iBook logic board failure to me.
     
  7. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #7
    to mkrishnan,demigod: no the apple logo on the outside is not lit up.
     
  8. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #8
    Update to mkrishnan: actually you're right: once it goes to sleep the dark screen gets illuminated a bit and the apple logo visible from the outside is on.
     
  9. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #9
    Strange. That would suggest that your backlight is not the problem, right? It could be what Mick said (logic board). If that's the case, then it's going to be an expensive repair. :(

    EDIT: So... you tried all things like resetting PRAM, etc, right? When you restart the computer, do you get the loud system chime right after you press the on button (BOOONG sound)? Do you have an external monitor you can try it with, to see if it's a screen thing vs. a logic board thing?
     
  10. paintballer macrumors regular

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    Utah
  11. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #11
    thanks for all the responses!
    to mkrishnan: pram? Never touched anything inside, how do I reset the pram?
    I do get the loud chime at the beginning, that's where it ends, all is dark.
    (in the past I've had the following issue: my hd went dead(that was the most likely diagnosis). I've since booted up from an external hd(acomdata ondago). It has worked perfectly well since then(about 1 1/2 month).
    I do not have an external monitor that I could connect to the ibook, I mean there would be an hp monitor but that doesn't work...
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #12
    Wow, you have a lot of defective hardware!

    Try holding the following key sequence down while you turn the power on (press the power button and then press this right away, and hold it until you hear the BONG sound a second time).

    Apple-Option-P-R

    That's how you reset PRAM.
     
  13. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #13
    That's weird!!

    I went ahead and reset the pram as you suggested: after the 2nd chime came the apple logo with the churning wheel and then a blue screen with 4 1-inch square patches. And that was it.
    I shut it down and started a regular startup. It went through all the regular screens to my desktop screen with all the icons visible for a little bit. Then lines started coming down more and more until everthing was darkish- greenish. When I moved the lid or touchpad it changed a little, but that was it.
    So I'm thinking why not startup from the utitly disk, and low and behold it worked, I was able to repair permissions and disk.
    I exited and tried to start up as usual or from the utility disk and everything has remained dark since. And that's how it is...
     
  14. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #14
    Mmmm, try one more thing. It's similar but more intensive.

    At the boot prompt, instead of Cmd-Opt-P-R, instead type Cmd-Opt-O-F

    Hopefully you should see a simple grey text interface for Open Firmware. Type the following three lines, each followed by <return>, each exactly as shown.

    reset-nvram
    set-defaults
    reset-all

    The system should then boot up again.

    The lines showing up on the screen, though.... do you mean that you saw random bright lines vertical or horizontal lines superimposed over the screen? That actually is a typical indicator of a failing logic board.... :(
     
  15. mick4394 macrumors 6502a

    mick4394

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    Location:
    Flyover country
    #15
    Yep, sounds like his logic board is going down. This is the death nail of all good iBooks.

    Zorba, if you're not technically inclined, I'd say it's time to start shopping for a Macbook.
     
  16. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #16
    Yeah, sad. It's not *that* common on G4s, though.... that's why I was hesitant to diagnose. :eek: Knock on wood, mine at 3+ yrs is rock solid.
     
  17. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #17
    Well, you both are probably right, it may be the logicboard. I tried what mkrishnan suggested, to no avail.
    Thankfully it's only the second notebook in the last four days ruined(the other one was the lcd for a inspiron 1404, that's 318$ there(and that's a very good price).
    Thanks, anyway!
     
  18. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #18
    Wait, can I ask this? You have the following broken equipment:

    1) laptop HD on the Mac
    2) Now possibly also the logic board on the Mac, separately, since you've been using it successfully for some time now.
    3) The Inspiron
    4) The monitor.

    What's going on in your house? :eek: Did any of these break due to physical trauma, or did they just stop working? If they just stopped working, I really think it's likely you have some serious problem with surges in your electrical power....that's like being repeatedly struck by lightning.
     
  19. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    #19
    It's a little more complicated...
    The iBook I bought in May 04 and lived at a different place, namly in Barstow in the beautiful California High Desert. I was the one most likely who screwed it up, I disconnected my dv camera at least once without dismounting. In 05 my hd(most likely scenario) gave out more and more(even though the diagnosis wasn't totally clear). I didn't want to spend 350$ for something that might or might not work so I let it sit until recently when I realised a number of things I missed and bought the Ondago hd(even if that didn't work I still had an fine external hd).
    Meanwhile, in september 06, I bought the inspiron laptop(the same in Apple, it goes without saying, would have cost exactly double...) and regretably a few days ago(I'm using it in cramped quaters here and the powercord was dangling much wider and different from usual) after I put it on the desk I snagged the powercord with my foot and down it went-broken lcd(and in all fairness, unlike apple support, dell reacted beautifully and went down to 318(everything, including tax, included) to pick it up, fix it and send it back, even though I didn't have accidental warranty.

    So, it could be that there was something different or in adition to the hd in the iBook there when it stopped working(even though the external hd seemed to have done the job beautifully).
    The monitor finally that I'm using here belongs to the organisation I'm working at for the time being.

    So, yes, it is a bit devastading to going from the wealth of to good notebooks to the famine of none for 2 weeks, but really, I have to blame myself mostly. Even though it should be pointed out more clearly everywhere how important correct dismounting is.
     
  20. zorba199 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 3, 2006
    #20
    I've solved the problem(it was the logic board, which obviously is a widespread issue with G4s too, and it seems to have been resolved(for the last 1 1/2 days) for free. Yes I did have to go into the computer...). If your G4 suddenly gave you a dark screen you want to go to:

    www.coreyarnold.org/ibook/
     

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