Apple to replace logic board, hope fix core shutdown

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mark34, May 20, 2008.

  1. mark34 macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    Well, I have finally come to the conclusion that the occasional core shutdown is just silly and brought my MacBook Air (first week 1.8 SSD) in to the Genius Bar. He ran a couple of tests and just said, "let's send it in and they will probably just replace the logic board".

    I will be anxious to see if this fixes the problem. Will they by definition deal with the thermal paste issue in this operation?

    Has anyone else been through this drill? I am curious if things were resolved afterwards and if there is less fan useage. I don't mind the fans coming on as much (I probably wouldn't have paid much attention expect for reading this forum), but core shutdown after an hour of video is unacceptable and clearly a "broken" machine and not a limitation of the specs of this product.
  2. 1rottenapple macrumors 68000

    Apr 21, 2004
    Well let us know how long is the turn around and the results. Im subscribing to this thread. :)
  3. mark34 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    I left it at the apple store yesterday afternoon. It arrived at the repair shop today... we shall see. They didn't futz around long at the Apple store. They pretty quickly said, lets send it for repair and they will likely replace the logic board.

    I have already seen its status go from DIAGNOSING to REPAIR IN PROGRESS this afternoon.

    Fingers crossed on improvement.
  4. n0de macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2005
    Hopefully they take the time to open it up even if the diagnostics come back clean. Maybe then they will clean up the thermal paste mess I am sure is in there and do it right. ;)
  5. orpheus1120 macrumors 65816


    Jan 23, 2008
    Doubt they will do anything to the thermal paste.

    Subscribed for the results.
  6. weeyao macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2008
    My 2 week old macbook air just refused to start up one day. No fan, no screen, no sound... nothing. I did a SMC reset with no response. I then sent it in for repairs and was had my logic board changed. Now it seems to run cooler (the left side is no longer significantly hotter), the keyboard inverted illumination problem is now gone, my fan has not spun up very much.... seems like my new logic board as sorted out most of the problems that I have faced with my MBA. Will need a little more time to monitor and play around with it!
  7. mark34 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    So, I got an email last night saying my repair was on hold pending additional information. I called and the guy said that the notes show that they ran it and could not duplicate the problem and wanted to know what usually caused it. ugh. So I explained that it was generally extended video play and told him that I would not accept an answer that included them not replacing the logic board, the computer, or doing some other significant step to alleviate the problem.

    We shall see what the techs say today. He gave them my cell and asked if it was ok if they call me.
  8. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    actually. The keyboard inverts the brightness when you're in a pitch dark room and your keyboard light is at max. Everytime I have this set, the keyboard seems to get confused and not lit up properly. If I set the keyboard brightness similar to the screen brightness, it works just fine.
  9. fredrickyoon macrumors regular


    Feb 14, 2008
    Seoul, South Korea
    Curious as well to see if replacing the logic board solves the numerous issues with the Air. Although, I have no problems with mine, just the occassional fan speed to 6200 when watching movies or trailers, that's about it though.
  10. SamoanDude macrumors regular

    May 22, 2008
    United States Now
    I thought mine had this issue! It would shut down every time I tried to watch any sort of video.

    Found out I was blocking the air vents which are in a wierd place while sitting on my lap and on the seat of my car.

    Maybe this will help some poor sod doing a google search or one or two of you here :(
  11. mark34 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    Interesting point about blocking the vents. I don't think I am doing that, but will check it out.

    As it turns out though, I just talked to apple. They WERE able to replicate the core shutdown and are in the process of determining and executing a fix. We shall see what happens next.

    Stay tuned.

  12. Particular macrumors member

    Nov 28, 2007
    The core shutdown you are experiencing is actually a "feature" of the CPU (even though it acts like a bug). The fact that Apple Support are replacing these machines just shows how poor the communication is between Apple's engineers and the support people. Probably the entire support function is outsourced.
  13. mark34 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    I have heard people describe the core shutdown as a "feature" and to some degree I get it, however it should not occur with normal light video viewing..... right? Of course they should replace / fix / do whatever in the case of core shutdown occurring in normal operation. This is not some crippled computer.

    The latest, btw, is that my unit is shipping back, "repaired". I am anxious to find out what that means and if I see any difference in performance.
  14. Garemz macrumors regular

    Feb 7, 2008
    Edmonton Alberta Canada
    I had the same problem they changed my board and the problem is still here.

    Its a poor design!!!!!

    MBA sucks!!!!
  15. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    If this replacement will fix the issue, Apple should do a big recall.
  16. steve31 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 20, 2007
    Edmonton Canada
    where did you buy it? West World or My Mac Dealer? Just curious.:D
  17. wordy macrumors regular


    Feb 26, 2008
    It is a 'feature' designed to reduce heat output under stress. Unfortunately, at the processor level it isn't implemented properly.

    What you consider "light video viewing" is nothing short of trivial for a processor handling poorly encoded video.

    Here are your Air's options when under stress (i.e. heating up):
    1. Shut down programs (users wouldn't be too happy)
    2. Increase fan speeds (this happens, but there is a fan speed limit)
    3. Shut down a core (compromise - less computing power, but programs stay running and chip produces less heat)

    If the processor was successfully able to switch the load from 2 cores to just one, there would be no core shutdown issue - but that isn't the case.
  18. mark34 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    So I got my Air back from Apple. It was actually quicker than it seems, but the 3 day weekend caused a longer elapsed time.

    They replaced the logic board.

    I am trying to put it through its paces and just use it normally. so far no core shutdowns, though, again, it wasn't easy to "make" it happen. The fan seems to be operating about the same as before. One thing that is interesting. It seems like I used to be either at exactly 2,500rpm or exactly 6,200 rpm most of the time. Now it seems to be at more random numbers like 2,853 or 5,720.

    As an aside, I was using my MacBook for the last few days. I never really noticed back when I used it a lot, but certainly the fan kicks on quite a bit there as well. I think I got hyper sensitive to the fan from reading these boards. I was using my Air today and felt like everything was great and nice and quiet. I checked the istat and realized the fans were at 6,200 ish. The fans really don't bother me is my point. They do their job.

    Here's to hoping that core shutdowns during normal use don't continue and that I don't have to restart my computer in the middle to continue watching a two hour program!

    I am happy that Apple replaced the logic board quickly and without a grumble or whine. I love this laptop.
  19. kockgunner macrumors 68000


    Sep 24, 2007
    Vancouver, Canada
    does your new one get really warm on the left side?
  20. weeyao macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2008
    Hey mark,
    can I ask you to have a look at your hardware overview....
    Have a look at the SMC revision (mine is 1.23f9) and your serial number
    What does it say? My SMC is 1.23f9 and my serial number says system serial #.

    I think mine used to have the serial number

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